I have been a loyal Ipsy subscriber since July 2013, well over a year. I just received my November Glam Bag and I have since cancelled my subscription. There are a few reasons why I cancelled, and I’m going to try to go over them one by one.
1. Exhaustive Repetition of Brands
I get these bags because I enjoy trying new brands, and I want to see if I like products so I can buy and enjoy the full sized versions. Unfortunately, Ipsy has sent me too many brands repeatedly for me to be excited about trying the products anymore.
I compiled the contents of my Ipsy Bags over the last 16 months and got the same brands over and over. For example, I received “Pop Beauty” 3 times, “Sexy Hair” 3 times, “NYX” 3 times, “Elizabeth Mott” 4 times and “Be a Bombshell” 5 times. There were several other brands I received twice or three times, and sometimes I even received duplicates of products I had previously received (as with Sexy Hair’s Hair Spray).
2. The Quality of the Brands
I think that either Ipsy is having a hard time finding different brands to work with them, or they court the cheaper brands because they think their customers would rather have a large sample from a “national brand” than a small one from a “luxury brand.” I would take the tiny sample from the luxury brand every single time. But Ipsy rarely features even modestly high-end brands or products. I’ve received a Benefit product a couple of times and Bare Minerals a few times, I also liked the Urban Decay liner I received and I got a Dr. Brandt skin product once… However, upon reading over my list of received products, it looks like each month I received on average either one or none of these products. For example, I do love NYX’s Butter Glosses, they’re pretty great. They’re inexpensive ($6-ish), come in cute packaging, and the formula is pretty much perfect. However, if I want one, I’ll just go to Ulta and buy one. There’s nothing special about getting one- even a full-sized one- in my Glam Bag. But that’s the type of thing that happens every month in my Ipsy bag. I would much rather get the mini “They’re Real” Mascara sample by Benefit, like I got in my July 2014 Glam bag, than the full-sized NYC Mascara that I received in my October 2014 bag.
3. Too Many Glam Bags
This is probably trivial, but I actually don’t love that they send a new cosmetics bag with every month’s Ipsy sampling. I have too many of them, and part of me is curious as to whether more money could be invested in sending out better products versus sending out bags that aren’t getting used all that often (or at all, by me, at least). I think that they’re cute, and of overall decent quality, but I’d rather they spend that two dollars on better, or at least different, brands. Considering the selections I’ve received- it seems as though they could use it.
4. Colour Selection
Having reviewed my Ipsy bags over the past little while (you know, 16 months), I noticed the “uniqueness” of many of the colours of eyeliner and shadow I received. I don’t mind trying something different now and then, but honestly, I don’t wear burnt orange eye shadow, orange nail polish or purple eyeliner regularly, Halloween, maybe… I’m also not super into brown lipsticks. Some of these products seemed like things that were not selling well for the companies, so they just gave them away.
5. Customer Service Quality
Back in July 2014, I received an Ipsy bag where one of my samples had exploded all over all my other samples and the “glam bag.” I was able to clean it all up, and salvage everything except the exploded sample. However, it turned the experience of receiving a Glam bag from fun, to a chore featuring wasted time and paper towels. The sample’s cap had not come loose, the packaging had actually come apart at the seams and was broken. I threw away the sample and contacted Ipsy’s customer service. They apologized and apparently sent me a new sample, which I never received. However, honestly, after the ordeal of having to clean their mess, I did expect more. I thought that perhaps, given the opportunity to make it up to me, that they would have sent me an entirely new box- so as to recreate the fun and excitement that is supposed to go along with the experience of receiving an Ipsy Glam Bag. (And after reading this tweet today, I guess I’m not the only one who thinks that’s the appropriate response) That experience is what ruined the brand for me- Ipsy used to be fun, now they were a brand that required me to clean up messes and didn’t send me the product that they said they would. (Or maybe they did and I didn’t receive it? Either way, I was still not a happy customer.) I did want to avoid comparing Ipsy to their competition, but given a situation in which I ended up using BirchBox’s customer service they just sent me a whole new box. They were extremely courteous about the whole thing too. In fact, I was able to chat with them on the phone, while Ipsy’s customer service is available via email only. I’m sorry, but they really set the bar for me, and when the bar is set high, you’ve either got to step your game up or quit playing.
I hope that Ipsy improves their customer service. Mine is actually a very mild example. I just didn’t receive a sample, I’ve heard stories about people not receiving their entire monthly order- or of it being delayed for weeks.
Note for people who do want to cancel: After you click “cancel” on their website (and they’ll ask you to confirm three times), don’t forget to click the confirmation email too. I made that mistake and remained subscribed for an extra month by accident.
What do you think about Ipsy? Are you a subscriber? Do you prefer the national brands or the higher-end ones- but smaller samples? Why are you subscribed and for how long? I would love to hear some opinions, maybe this is just me? 🙂
Thanks for reading!
I decided to include photos of my IPSY bags so that you could see all the brand repetition and products I received if you were interested.