As someone that’s not exactly rolling in cash, there’s nothing I hate more than having to purchase a full bottle of a product when I haven’t been able to really put it to the test. Product samples are my jam so I decided to try the top two beauty boxes: Birchbox and Ipsy. Keep reading to see how they compared.
Ipsy April Bag
- $12 a month
- A combo of drugstore brand/semi premium brands
- Skin and Makeup products – no hair stuff
I ordered the Ipsy Glambag, which, I’m disappointed to say, arrived almost a month after I ordered it. I do love that Ipsy sends their products in makeup bags, though, because I’m always hunting for toiletries bags when I travel. This is a bag I’ll definitely keep.
In terms of the products, here’s the rundown:
- FEEL Harmony Rose Petal Facial Mask– This was a brand I had never heard of. My skin felt so hydrated after using this, but the scent was so strong it left me with a headache. I love that it includes rose essential oils, but the scent is definitely not for me.
- MERCI HANDY Hand Cream Hello Sunshine– I was pretty impressed by the size of this hand cream. Definitely something I can throw in my handbag that’ll last a couple months. The downside? Another intensely strong smell. Way too floral for me. Bummer because I really loved how soft it made my hands feel.
- THEBALM COSMETICS Petal to the Metal in Shift into Overdrive, Turbo– I really love this product. The color is a pink-neutral and goes on so smooth, since it’s a cream shadow. It blended so well with my other eyeshadows!
- ILLAMASQUA Antimatter Lipstick in Cosmic– Another brand I hadn’t heard of, but also another winner with this one. This color is a gorgeous light pink, and despite being matte, keeps my lips moisturized.
- IT COSMETICS Your Skin But Better Primer + Oil-Free– I was so excited to try this, but the sample was so tiny. I could barely get a few uses out of it, which was a bit disappointing. Despite that, I love the way the primer set my makeup. My pores look crazy small! I just wish I could get a few more uses out of it.
I’d rate this Ipsy bag a 2.5/5. On some samples, the strong scents really posed the problems for me, and the products I did like were a bit too small. I wasn’t familiar with any of the brands in the box, and while I do love to try new brands, I was hoping to try at least one brand I had heard of. I really love having that brand diversity: brands I’ve heard of, and brands I haven’t. I think if Ipsy sent sizeable, mildly-scented products from a bit higher-end brands, I would have enjoyed it more. It wasn’t my favorite month of products, but maybe Ipsy has some better ones.
- $15 a month
- Mid – High end brands
- Skin, Makeup AND hair
I really felt like Birchbox sent me what I was looking for. I got a mix of makeup, skincare, and hair products, which is great for me, as someone who doesn’t wear a ton of makeup. This box offered some higher-end brands, and I loved being able to try those.
The samples I got in my Birchbox were:
- MALIN+GOETZ revitalizing eye gel– This gel has been my saving grace since I started using it. It completely combats my dry under-eye and leaves it totally moisturized. I’ve never even heard of this brand, but I’m happy I found it. Definitely an addition to my skincare routine.
- R+Co HIGH DIVE Moisture + Shine Crème– This creme is perfect for all the flyaways I get during the day due to my frizzy hair. A lot of my friends love R+Co, and after trying this product, I get why. A little goes a long way, so I know this sample will last. It’s perfect for the hair that needs a little extra moisture. The only thing I’m not a fan of is the scent. If R+Co came up with an unscented Moisture + Shine Crème, I’d buy it in an instant.
- too cool for school All-in-One Egg Mellow Cream 5-in-1 Firming Moisturizer– I’ve always wanted to try this brand. This moisturizer makes my skin feel like I just had a facial. It moisturizes the skin without being too oily and couldn’t be better for my dry winter skin.
- Marcelle Micellar Water – Normal Skin– This micellar water has been the only thing, next to coconut oil, to take off my insanely waterproof mascara. On top of that, it makes my skin feel clean. This sample will be perfect for my next redeye.
- Beautaniq Beauty Butter Lip & Cheek Balm – Mauve Lychee– I love two-in-one products. They save time, and space. This balm blended seamlessly on my cheeks and gave my lips a pop of color. The color was a bit too pink, but it’s perfect for those who are going for that accent-pink look.
- Comptoir Sud Pacifique Vanille Abricot Eau de Toilette– This scent is to die for. It smells like I rubbed vanilla beans all over my body. What I love is that, despite such a sweet smell, this product does not trigger headaches. I am so picky when it comes to scents and shocked that Birchbox could pick one that I actually love. This perfume has found a home in my purse. Plus, perfume samples count as a bonus, so in this box, I was able to try to 6 products instead of the usual 5!
I’d rate this Birchbox a 4.5/5. The box felt personalized, the samples were large, the scents didn’t bother me, and all the brands were high-quality. It’s $3 extra, but honestly, for better personalization, I think it’s worth it. Plus, with the mix of makeup, skincare, haircare, and perfume, there’s something for everyone in each box.
If you’re looking to get the best beauty box personalized to your unique beauty profile, I suggest Birchbox: