Date of arrival: November 14, 2013. Better, but DHL still sucks. My bag went to like 6 states before getting here again.
Packaging: Still the beloved pink envelope. I love these things because I reuse them like crazy. This month's theme is "Glam It Up", which makes sense because the bag I got is pretty much the poor man's Sephora Favorites Glitz & Glam kit. In addition to the theme card with the monthly brands, we have a very special em by Michelle Phan card. I was wondering how long it would be before we finally got em goodies, yay!
Contents and mini reviews: My bag contained the Cailyn mineral eyeshadow in Champagne, Nailtini nail polish in Caviar Cocktail, be a bombshell lip crayon in shameless, Starlooks eyeliner in Topaz, and em pillow plush cushiony lip balm in strawberry. UPDATE: I realize now that my bag was missing the pixi bronzer and everyone was supposed to get 6 items this month. I contacted ipsy, hopefully they will send me one!
The Cailyn mineral eyeshadow ($15) seems nice enough. It's a pretty gold shadow that applied smoothly to my hand. I definitely like the design of the sponge tip, it makes me think I might actually use this instead of getting annoyed with it getting all over my sink and tossing it in the back of my drawer. I always watch the ipsy YouTube channel and it looked really nice when Sam Schuerman applied it, so I am looking forward to playing with it myself. Tentative B+.
This is my fourth Nailtini polish ($13)...Frappe is one of my all time favorite polishes ever, so I am definitely a fan of the brand. I love those gunmetally type colors, so I am excited to get this. Tentative A+.
I am also enjoying the be a bombshell lip crayon in shameless ($14). The color is right up my alley, and the formula is nice. I haven't worn it to work yet so I'm not sure if it's long lasting or not, but I have high hopes. Tentative A.
I am a little skeptical about the starlooks gem eye pencil in Topaz ($14). First of all, it's not topaz...it's straight up metallic silver. But wikipedia tells me "Pure topaz is colorless and transparent but is usually tinted by impurities; typical topaz is wine, yellow, pale gray, reddish-orange, or blue brown. It can also be made white, pale green, blue, gold, pink (rare), reddish-yellow or opaque to transparent/translucent." so I guess it's fine. I still can't really picture myself wearing this color. The pencil is much harder than the kind of pencils I like, which is the same problem I had with the last starlooks pencil Ipsy sent me. Not a fan. Tentative C-.
I am excited to try the em pillow plus cushiony lip balm ($15). I have been veeeeeery tempted by the professional life palette, but I will settle for a nice squishy lip balm. It's nice on the lips but it's not super long lasting or nourishing and doesn't have a ton of color payoff. This is the kind of balm I'd keep by my bed just to put something on when I'm bored, but not something I'd reach for when doing my makeup. Tentative B.
Value: With 5 full size products, this bag was valued at a whopping $71. Am I missing something? Is something not full size? That is insane. Definitely one of the highest Ipsy bags in a long time. Considering I paid $10, I am impressed. A+++.
Overall impression of the bag: While I am not madly, madly in love with anything in it (yet), this was a solid bag. It's not as great as the Sephora Glitz and Glam, but it's ten freaking dollars so I shouldn't expect it to be. I am happy to finally get my hands on an em product, but I have to admit, I am super bored with all of the other brands. I am pretty sure this is my FOURTH Cailyn, Nailtini, and be a bombshell product from Ipsy, and it's my second Starlooks (two is enough). Still, I'd give this thing an A. Good work, Ipsy.
Overall impression of the service: Still an A-, and dangerously close to getting dropped to a B+ due to ongoing DHL issues.