Sunday, December 23, 2012

December Ipsy vs. Birchbox

Well, well, well, it's that time again girlies.  Time for the December Ipsy vs. Birchbox comparison! 

I just love doing a good compare-and-contrast on these subscription services because people often ask me which one I like better and why.  The answer is that I really like both of them, and that some months are better for one than another, noting that this is all based on personal preference.  Seeing the boxes together only helps people make smart decisions about which box may appeal to them more.  Hopefully you find this month's comparison helpful!


L to R:
Cartier Baiser Vole Eau de Parfum
Frownies Eye Gels
The Balm Hot Mama! Blush/Eye Shadow
Ahava Dermud Intensive Foot Cream
Number 4 Clarifying Shampoo
Cartier Declaration d'un Soir (Birchbox Man)
 I was pleasantly surprised by this Birchbox, because I finally felt like I received a good number of quality samples.  The Cartier perfume sample was fine, but nothing that I was wowed by.  But in all fairness, it takes a lot to wow me when it comes to perfume.  Hubs didn't care for the mens sample and threw it in the trash immediately, so I guess he won't be buying the full-size version!  I loved seeing a package of the Frownies eye gels because I bought some of these for my mom last Christmas.  She loves them and feels like they help her under eye circles.  Since my dark circles of made a reappearance, I think I'm going to give these a try tonight.  The Clarifying Shampoo was a good size and made my hair feel clean without completely stripping the oils.  I just don't love low lather shampoos, because the lather is what makes me feel like it's doing something!  I know, it's totally psychological.  The Hot Mama! blush/eye shadow is pretty nice, but the sample pan is too small to use as a blush (I can hardly get any of it on a fluffy blush brush).  I like it as a shimmery neutral eye shadow though!  I also gave the Ahava foot cream a whirl and it's both pleasant smelling and incredibly moisturizing.  I loved how it absorbed quickly and didn't leave my feet feeling slick.
One little bonus in the box this month was a $50 coupon for Rent the Runway!  Thanks Birchbox!
Ipsy Glam Bag
L to R:
Mirabella Prime for Face & Eyes
Urban Decay 24/7 Glide-On Eye Pencil - Black
Bombshell Lip Gloss - Hot Mess
NYX Loose Pearl Eye Shadow - Mocha Pearl
Mai Couture Highligher Papier
I thought this was one of the best Ipsy bags to date!  The Mirabella primer was great, but I'm a newbie to primers so I don't have much to compare it to.  It gave my skin a nice finish and my make-up layered on beautifully.  The UD eye pencil was a big score for me because I've been wanting to try this for awhile.  While I don't need yet another black eye pencil, this formula really does glide on easily and it LASTS.  I mean, it does not come off without scrubbing with soap and water, so it wins my prize for best eye pencil longevity.  I totally see what the hype was about.  The Bombshell lip gloss was full size and is a nice sheer red.  While I did feel like the color made me look a bit "tarted up", that's only because I don't typically wear such bright lip colors.  The formula was smooth and wasn't too sticky, so those are pluses.  The NYX loose eye shadow was... well, it reminded me of why I usually hate loose eye shadows.  I always make a huge mess with them, meaning that they get all over my counters, my shirt, my face, everything.  And this time was no exception!  I think the color is dramatic, though, so I may be able to use this again if I can learn to control the mess.  Finally, the Mai Couture highlighter paper was a nice alternative to my usual Benefit High Beam highlighter, and was fairly subtle.  I think these will get used a lot!
Finally, I love the silver bag that the products came in this month.  This has become the new make-up bag for my purse because it's simple and well-made.  Ipsy has really upped the ante by improving the quality of their bags over the past few months.  Hats off to you, Ipsy!
The Verdict
This month's decision was a tough one because both had great elements.  The winner is... Birchbox!  Kudos to Birchbox for sending me a great mix of products this month and leaving me anxious for next month's box.  I also think Ipsy has done a great job with improving the quality of it's products over the months that I've been subscribing, and the offerings get better each month.
Which box/bag did you prefer this month??

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Tampa, Florida, United States
I'm a wife, daughter and amazing twin sister. I'm a mom to my adorable dog, Bella. Loves: Shopping, cooking, baking, good grammar and Dave Matthews Band. I'm also a Bath and Body Works addict, a Michigan State Spartans fanatic, and an iPhone aficionado. I see beauty in simple things and little things make me ever-so-happy. Welcome to my world!

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