Why I loved Ipsy, but cancelled it anyway.

Monday, October 12, 2015

If you're one of the people I convinced to join Ipsy, I'm sorry for abandoning ship.
Yes, I cancelled today. But do I regret signing up to get my glam bags in the first place?  No, not really.  It was a good year, filled with copious amounts of makeup.  
But sometimes you can have too much of a good thing.

It started out great (as most relationships do).  Every month I would see that shiny pink envelope in my mailbox and become overwhelmingly excited for new products.  It's like a mini Christmas each time.  Then I would open it to find that sometimes its contents were awesome...and other times not so much.  

But we can start with the good times.

For one, I personally think that the sizes of the samples Ipsy sends are perfect for its intended purpose.  It's a subscription service that's supposed to provide users with new/beloved products to test out, based on the quiz that the subscriber takes before receiving their first glam bag.  If you're not satisfied with the sizes that Ipsy provides, maybe you shouldn't be subscribing to a service at all.  Shop at a retail store that sells makeup in regular sizes.  I mean come on, it's only $10/month and you're getting 5 products each time.  And for the most part, they seem to be high quality.  This also isn't the subscription service for you if you're only into high-end makeup.

Product wise, the best was when I would find my favorite Smashbox Photo Finish Foundation Primer or an NYX Butter Lipstick.  Or any lipstick, for that matter.  This month there was a Delectable Miracle Material lotion that smelled deliciously like coconut marshmallows.  I also read recently how important exfoliating is for healthy skin, so I'm happy that I've had a few different exfoliating facial cleansers sent to me in my Ipsy bags to try.  The pink Milani (I love Milani) Color Statement Nail Laquer only needs one coat and is pretty resistant to chipping.  I had a super moisturizing Jersey Shore Cosmetics Coconut "Lip Conditioner" chapstick that I adore.  I also got the Tarte Amazonian Clay Waterproof Bronzer.  The Keratherapy Daily Smoothing Cream is something I would actually buy again for my hair.  The Luxie Beauty Tapered Blending Eye Brush was one of the few brushes I received, and I really like it for contouring.  I took the Pur Lisse Gentle Soymilk Cleanser & Makeup Remover on my Europe trip with me.  It worked extremely well and was the perfect size for traveling.  I still use the ModelCo Blush Cheek Powder from my February bag every day, as it's the perfect shade for my skin tone.  I found one of my very favorite mascaras in Tarte Deluxe Lights-Camera-Lashes.  One of my first Ipsy loves was J. Cat Beauty Wonder Lip Paint (great color, not too thick either).  There were also decent sized eyeshadow and eyebrow palettes I was very happy with.

These were just some examples of the things I loved, but there were definitely other Ipsy products that I had good experiences with.  I was always happy when they would send me products from brands that I was already obsessed with (and I love A LOT of different brands; Smashbox, tarte, Milani, NYX are examples of some that they did send).  Unfortunately, these incidences were few and far between.  I also had many experiences where I found products I really liked from brands that I had never heard of, which are also many of the other products I listed above.


Then there was the bad.

The worst was when they would send me those stupid lip glosses where you're expected to drag a gooey wand out of the container and apply an unappealing color to your lips.  You know, the kind that your hair gets stuck to on a windy day.  Not my fave.

I would tell people this and they'd say, "go back on the website and change your preferences!" and apparently all would be fine.  You REALLY think that if I hated lipglosses so much that I would say I preferred having it sent to me in the first place?  Absolutely not.  And trust me, I tried to give every lipgloss I received a negative rating on my Ipsy account in the hopes of not getting one in the future.  I told myself that the next time I received one in my Ipsy bag would be the day I cancelled my subscription.  Guess what happened.

You might think I'm overreacting about the lipgloss thing, but I felt the same way about the hair volumizing or "sea salt" sprays that did nothing for my hair and highlighters that didn't seem to show up on my skin at all.  I am a huuuuuge fan of highlighters, so this was particularly saddening.

Then there were the things I just received too often, like blush.  At first it was cool, but how much blush does a girl need?  Not one every month, that's for sure.  I went onto my account to make sure I unchecked blush, yet I continued to receive it.  Same with lotions (which I love, but again, I don't need more of this).

Overall, there was a handful of things that I received that I started rating very negatively for different reasons.  Either I hated what they were sending or I was receiving the same type of thing far too often.  I still was sent at least one of those negatively rated things monthly.  

In the end, that wasn't even what propelled me to cancel my subscription.  Because even though I was unhappy with some of the things I was receiving, I still loved many of them.  It came down to the fact that I was only loving about 60% of the items I'd find in my glam bags.  The other 40% was either "eh" or I hated it and would end up giving it away.  Then there was also the fact that I was still needing to buy other types of makeup that I wasn't receiving in my glam bag.   This made made it very hard to justify spending $10/month on Ipsy when I could walk into Sephora and buy the products I know I like.  

Ipsy was fun for a year.  I really did enjoy it, and I meant what I said when I recommended it to other people!  It just gets repetitive and old after a certain point, but I don't think that's Ipsy's fault.  I have 3 glam bags piled up on my desk that I haven't even had a chance to really use yet.  I think what Ipsy has to offer is a great subscription.  What started out as an exciting shiny pink bag in my mailbox that I couldn't wait to rip open ended up turning into, "really? has it already been a month?"  Same with the idea of getting a makeup bag every month.  At first I was so thrilled, until I realized I don't know what to do with 12 makeup bags that don't fit much more than the 5 items that came inside of them.  And Ipsy eyeshadow palettes are great, but when you notice that all you ever use for eyeshadow are your current Naked palettes, there's no point in paying the monthly fee.  

I found it all entertaining for about a year, but I think at this point Ipsy and I have just grown apart.  
It was time to break up, sorry!  Good times were had and I found many new faves.
Maybe someday we'll meet again, Ipsy.  Or maybe I'll try something new since there are a plethora of subscription services I've been eyeing up for some time now.  

One way to get sample sizes that I've always been a fan of is shopping Sephora.com.  Basically any time you shop, you get to pick out a certain amount of free samples.  GOOD samples, like high end brands of things you've always wanted to try.  Sometimes around holidays they even create a little glam bag of their own that you get for free if you make a purchase.  Also, you can almost always get free shipping if you wait and buy all the things you need at once.  And if you're a Beauty Insider you'll rack up points to receive MORE free samples.  Of course I know things like this, Sephora is where I learned how to online shop back in middle school ;)

I would love to hear thoughts on this topic, from current subscribers or even ex-Ipsters.  
Did you/do you think it's worth it?  LEMME KNOW.


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