A shade of the dramatic, where different is all there is.

Posts tagged “Ipsy

“Red Carpet Ready” the February Glam Bag by ipsy

Red Carpet Ready glam bag

In honour of the Academy Awards, this month ipsy put out a Glam Bag called Red Carpet Ready.  Focusing on the creation of a smoldering smoky eye this glam bag helps you on your way to creating a sexy look for your evenings out.

ipsy February 2013

The little bag this month was very slim, sleek and ultra glossy.

Red Carpet Ready

The items this month were all very small in size, so there was a tonne of room to spare inside this months glam bag.  And honestly, my impression of this glam bag by ipsy was less than impressive.  Let’s take a look at what I received:

February 2013 Glam Bag by Ipsy

It was neat that I received all products from brands that I haven’t tried before and “Coastal Scents” being the only one I’ve ever even heard of.  Please forgive my ignorance.  Unfortunately, that also meant, there wasn’t anything I was super excited to try either.

Flawless & Poreless by Pixi Beauty

Pixi Beauty is a line of cosmetics founded by the very famous beauty blogger Petra.  Started in the UK, the website has a site for the UK as well as their US customers.  They ship internationally and have a shipping calculator in their shopping cart to let you know what charges you can expect.  She also has an entire line of Tinkerbell products on her website due to a collaboration with Disney, for all of you fairydust lovers.

This face primer called Flawless & Poreless is said to “creates a seamless, silky canvas with a beautiful no-shine, cashmere finish. The formula’s skin-loving ingredients clear and unblock pores to allow for utterly flawless, long-lasting makeup application.”

face primer

I’ve never been able to tell much of a difference between high end facial primers.  NARS, benefit, tarte all seem to feel and work the same with my skin…so I really wish that if I was going to try a product from Pixi Beauty that it had been something a little more telling or unique to their line.  Regardless though, I have no doubt this tube of facial primer will get used eventually.

The 30 mL full size version retails on their website for $29.00 US, making this 15 mL deluxe sample a $14.50 value.

primer for your face, by pixi

Black Gel Liner by MICA Beauty Products

The next item I pulled out of my February Glam Bag was a black gel liner by MICA Beauty Products.  Definitely unfamiliar with this brand I had to do some research.  Turns out that MICA started in 2001 and launched their line of 100% natural cosmetics, entirely cruelty free.  They currently have a presence in 15 different countries throughout North America and Europe.  If anyone has used their products before, please let me know what you think below, because they have some really cool items on their website and I’m wondering about overall quality and value.

Micabeauty Ultra Smooth Gel Eyeliners make it easy for anyone to apply eyeliner without dealing with smudges, uneven lines, or fading.”

They come in 6 beautiful colors too: black, brown, bronze, green, blue and purple.  Being a big fan of gel liners already, I already have too large of a collection (2 black, 1 brown, 1 purple and 1 blue), so it will likely be some time before I have to reach for this one.  If only I’d gotten the green one!  😛

gel liner by MICA beauty

I hate that ipsy never includes a card stating the items you are actually receiving, or how much product of each.  I mean, this gel liner looks pretty big, I thought it was full-size, but the packaging on  MICA Beauty’s website looks totally different (with a built-in application brush), so I’m guessing it isn’t full-size.  But I have no way or knowing that for sure.  Even on ipsy’s website where they profile the items you received and show you how to get preferred discounts for the brands, no where does it mention size of the samples received.  If I’m wrong about this and just don’t know where to look, can one of you lovely readers fill me in?  Because it’s driving me nuts.  I can only guess that this product is about 2.5-3g (based on similar products this size).  The full-size version of this product is 5g and retails for $30.00 US, giving this sample a rough estimated value at $15.00 to $18.00.

MICA Beauty - black gel liner sample from ipsy

Coastal Scents Eyeshadow Quad mini

I had heard of Coastal Scents eyeshadows before, but had never tried them.  They aren’t known for being super high quality, but their low price point and decent quality makes them a good value.

The quad I received features 4 monochromatic shades perfect for a sultry, sexy, smoky eye. There is a decent amount of product in each, more than enough for several uses.

eyeshadow sampler from ipsy (Coastal Scents)

Candlelight, Gunmetal, Incognito and Ashen.

Gunmetal, Candlelight, Ashen and Incognito eye shadow samples from ipsy (Coastal Scents)

The two darkest shades were a little too similar for my liking, whereas another mid tone shade would’ve been ideal.  They do feel nice and creamy though, so I’m interested in trying them out in a look.  Here is a swatch of the shades:

Candlelight, Gunmetal, Incognito, Ashen swatches

Ashen is really pretty and a unique addition to my collection, I don’t have something quite like that one.  And what’s cool, is their website does sell the colors individually in pan form, so I can always grab just the one shade if I’m interested.  This mini quad holds 2g of product and is valued at $3.07.

Smoky Lash KAPOW mascara by POP Beauty

Pop Beauty is again, another line I wasn’t familiar with.  Starting out in London, POP beauty has now extended into the US market as well.  “Famous for bright colors and innovative formulas.”  

The mascara mini is Smoky Lash KAPOW, in shade “Smoky Black”.

Smokey Black mascara - KAPOW

Personally I found their website the least user-friendly of the bunch, with no search capabilities and poor product information.  For the life of me, I couldn’t find the size of the full-size mascara.  And if you click on “application” or “ingredients” the window where you can actually purchase that item, disappears making it impossible to purchase from the individual product page…without going out and going back in.

So, in order to calculate this sample’s value I had to do some more estimating.  My other full size mascaras range in size from 7-9mL, so if we call the average full-size mascara 8 mL, I can estimate this samples value at $11.04.

Smoky Lash KAPOW mascara by POP beauty


The last item I pulled out of my February Glam Bag was this pack of Lashcards.


So the idea is, you put the lash card in between your lid and your lashes while you apply your mascara.  To prevent smudging and clumping.

Personally I think the idea of these is okay, but in reality, who is going to spend this much money on lash cards on a regular basis?  They aren’t reusable  and to use them everyday would be an exorbitant expense.  And really, if you  have a nice quality mascara (or even some of the drugstore brands are awesome) you don’t have these problems anyway.

This sample set includes 4 cards.  Normally you can buy packs of 10 for $6.99, making this samples value about $2.80.

lashcard.com, ipsy

Total value of February’s “Red Carpet Ready” was roughly $46.41.

So overall, okay products this month, but nothing that I can’t wait to try out either.  Am I alone in not really liking the “Red Carpet Ready” bag?  Did other people really like this month’s Glam Bag?  Please let me know your thoughts below.

February 2013 Glam Bag by ipsy "Red Carpet Ready"

Thanks for reading!


For a look at last month’s Glam Bag, click here.  If you are interested in subscribing, click here.

Topbox’s First “Prive Box” – Clinique

Clinique Prive Box, January 2013 Topbox

A couple of months ago Topbox announced that they would be adding a Prive Box to their offerings.  The Prive Box is a beauty box featuring products all from one brand, Topbox members would be able to see the box ahead of time and decide if they wanted the Prive Box that month, or the regular mystery box.  For January though, as their first Prive Box, it would be a surprise and everyone was to get one.  No one knew who the brand was ahead of time or what would be inside.

So when I saw the little cylindrical box in my mail box last week, I wasn’t sure what to expect.  I unwrapped the brown shipping paper to find personalized paper featuring the name of a high-end brand – Clinique.

Clinique Prive Box - January 2013 Topbox

In Canada, Clinique is available at both Sephora and department stores and generally speaking costs a pretty penny.  The only time I purchase Clinique is during the bonus time’s where you spend a certain amount of money and get a beauty bag for free.  So, over the years I’ve ended up with a variety of Clinique samples, some of which I’ve used until they were gone, others I have hardly touched.  But nevertheless I was happy to see a well known brand in January’s Topbox and knew before opening it, that the value would be there this month.

My shipment didn’t have a tag # this month, so I’m not sure what box # I received.  But it was definitely customized for my combination skin.  Let’s take a closer look at what was inside:

Repairwear Laser Focus

Clinique Topbox

Said to be “A second chance for skin against sun damage and wrinkles.  At 12 weeks, the visible wrinkle-reducing power is remarkably close to a dermatological laser procedure.  63% to be exact.”  I guess that is how it gets its name.  I actually received this exact sample in my last Clinique Bonus Time beauty bag (months ago) and I haven’t even given that one a try.  So it will likely be some time before this seal gets cracked, but at least I have it for when I need it.  And honestly I probably should start incorporating these types of products into my regular routine.  This wrinkle and UV damage protector is 7mL in size.  The full size (30mL) retails for $57.00 CAD which makes this sample valued at $13.30.

Clarifying Lotion 3

Clinique Topbox (Prive - January box)

Part of Clinique’s 3-step skin care program this is actually for step 2 (the 3 refers to the skin type).  This is to be used after you wash your face and before you apply your moisturiser.  Again, this is my second time receiving a sample of this.  I received a larger sample (double the size actually) of this quite a while ago during a Bonus Time and still use it a few times a week.  So it’s nice to know that I won’t need to rush out and a buy a new one.  I can use this up as well…  This sample is 30mL in size and with the full size being 200mL and retailing for only $16.00 this puts this sample’s value at  just $2.40.

Rinse-Off Eye Makeup Solvent

Clinique Topbox offerings - January Prive Box 2013

This eye makeup solvent is to be used for quick removal or quick change.  It says that it leaves no oily residue so fresh makeup adheres immediately.  To me, that sounds like MAC’s Pro Eye Makeup Remover (the purple bottle) which is okay for some products, but won’t work well on anything with waterproof or waterproof like formulas (because of the lack of oil).  If you’ve tried this product already, let me know what you think of it below?  I’m curious about it and I have no doubt I will try it.  But considering I have both an oil-free and waterproof makeup remover on the go right now, I don’t have an immediate use for it.  This sample is the largest sample in the January Topbox, at 60mL.  The full size is 125mL and retails for $25.00, making this sample valued at an even $12.00.

Color Surge Eye Shadow Duo in 02 Like Mink

Clinique Topbox

Clinique Prive Box, by Topbox

This neutral toned eye shadow duo contains two “go-together” shades in a chrome slide compact.  I’m not sure how much use I will get out of this, given that I am such an eye shadow hoarder and already have far too many, but it can’t hurt to try it out…I just need to remember I have it.  🙂  The full size 2.5g version of this product retails for $25.00, so this 1.6g sample is valued at $16.00.

Total value of January 2013 Prive Box featuring Clinique = $43.70.  Not bad for a $12.00 investment.

Clinique Prive Box for January 2013

Overall, for this month, I see myself using 2, maybe three of the products regularly and can’t really say that I’m disappointed, but I can’t say that I’m super excited about it either.  Just sort of content with it I guess.  The value is there, the products are definitely high quality and generally speaking I love Clinique.  There just wasn’t anything in this box that put a giant smile on my face that I couldn’t wait to try out.  It’s just a variety of useful high-end products.  But really, that is good enough for me!  If you’d like to sign up to become a Topbox member, you can.  It is $12.00 a month with free shipping and you can cancel at any time.  Join here.

For February, they are featuring three different Prive Boxes.  One of which contains the highly sought after brand benefit.  They don’t have enough for everyone though, so I believe the people who receive it will be selected randomly from the people who requested it.  Should be interesting…I really hope I am lucky enough to get one!

Were you happy with your Beauty Boxes this month?

I signed up for Ipsy as well, so I should be receiving my first glam bag from them soon!   Can’t wait!



To see what I’ve received in my last few Topboxes, feel free to follow these links:

October 2012 Topbox

November 2012 Topbox

December 2012 Topbox