First, SKINCARE! · Let's Make Up! · Unboxing / Unbagging

ChooseDay : Battle of the Subscription Boxes – Ipsy vs. Play by Sephora Bag

Heard a lot about Ipsy and Play by Sephora bags but always hesitated to subscribe?

If you wanna know if these 10-dollar subscription boxes are worth giving up your two or three cups of Starbucks a month, keep reading!

I have always watched and enjoyed unboxing videos on Youtube. I have told myself once or twice, okay! maybe Ten Thousand times that I will subscribe to these boxes as soon as I get the chance. And so, I did!

Ipsy and Play by Sephora are just two of the most talked about monthly subscription beauty boxes. Basically, you pay $10 a month and in return, you get a bag with 5 to 6 goodies every month.

In this blog, I will be sharing with you what I got from my October Ipsy and Play by Sephora bags. Take a closer look and see if they’re worth it. IMG_3352.JPG


Ipsy Bag – I think it’s pretty cool to mention that one of the founders of Ipsy bag is Michelle Phan. If you are a makeup lover, you should know who she is. If not, where have you been? Since she was where we are at one point, she definitely knows what one would want to get from each month’s bag.IMG_3353

The monthly Ipsy Bag will give you:

  • 5 items from different brand tiers (could be makeup, haircare, skincare, tools, etc.)
  • a card to tell you more about the month’s theme
  • and of course, a really cute makeup pouch. We’ll talk more about the bags in a few.

This month’s theme is Spell Bound.

There are 5 items include in this bag – 2 makeup, 2 skincare products and a makeup brush. This bag features It Cosmetics, Tony Moly, Tarte Cosmetics, Firma and Hanalei.

Play By Sephora – This is a bag inside a really pretty black and white stripes box that you get in your mail every 3rd week of the month. Each month you will get the following:

  • 5 deluxe samples from high end brands that Sephora carries a perfume sample
  • a Play Pass card that will give you extra 50 Beauty Insider points if you show it to a Sephora branch but this requires a purchase of any full sized product
  • a beauty FYI card (I just made up that name because I don’t know what it’s called and I don’t wanna call it a piece of paper) that will tell you more about the month’s theme and the different products included in the bag. This is very Sephora! It includes basic details about the products and tips for using them.
  • Lastly, you get the bag of course.



This month’s theme is Complexion Companions.

There are 6 items included in this bag – 4 makeup, 1 skincare product and a perfume sample. This bag features Sephora, Make Up For Ever, Dr. Brandt, Stellar, Cover FX and Tory Burch.



Here are the products I got from this month’s bag:


  •  TARTE COSMETICS deluxe lights, camera, lashes™ 4-in-1 mascara
  •  HANALEI Papaya Enzyme Powder Cleanser
  •  TONYMOLY Peach Hand Cream
  •  IT COSMETICS Bye Bye Pores Pressed Powder
  •  Firma Beauty 201 Tall Blender Brush


  • SEPHORA Instant Moisture+ cream
  • DR. BRANDT Pores No More Luminizer Primer
  • STELLAR Loose Powder
  • COVER FX Custom Enhancer Drops
  • MAKE UP FOR EVER Ultra HD Foundation
  • TORY BURCH Bel Azur Perfume Sample



If we are gonna give a score based on the number of products you get in the bag, that’s definitely going to be Sephora’s first point. You get 6 products in the Play bag while Ipsy will offer you 5 items.




Since we are comparing these two very famous bags, I thought it’s important to point out that Ipsy features samples from high-end, mid-tier and drugstore brands so you are definitely getting a taste of different beauty worlds. Play by Sephora on the other hand, only features high-end samples. If you are brand conscious and you appreciate getting samples from high end brands only, the Play bag is the perfect fit for you.



Now, let’s talk about the bags! Ipsy are known for their super duper kaduper glam bags. In my opinion, the cute monthly bag alone can be sold for 10 bucks. The monthly themes are well thought of and their creators are still able to find ways to keep it interesting and fun.



While Sephora also gives you a free bag each month, I am honestly not the biggest fan of the actual Play bag. The designs are cute but I would still choose a clutch type makeup bag that has a zipper over the ones Play by Sephora gives out each month. I just don’t see myself putting all my makeup inside the Play Bag and bring it to work. I may take it with me when I travel but it won’t be my go to bag. So for the bag, I am giving Ipsy a solid point.



This one is an easy decision for me. I love Sephora’s packaging but I appreciate the consistent and stellar shipping/delivery services of Ipsy. Last August, I got my Play bag really early and then I got it kinda late in the month last September. This month, I received it last October 24th. I just feel that their delivery sched and email notification is a little bit inconsistent. Ipsy on the other hand will send you email notif when they have received your order, when they prepare your bag and when they ship your bag which I truly appreciate.


This one was a bit difficult to score especially this month. I think both bags stepped up their game this month. But I asked myself many times, “Will you use this?” in order to identify the winner for this category. I find myself loving the products in the Play bag more than the Ipsy bag. The only product that I may NOT use in the Play! bag is the perfume sample. It is just a bit strong for my liking. I got so excited when I saw the IT Cosmetics powder in the Ipsy bag but the rest were just OK products for me. I appreciate that they included a makeup brush. I have a lot of mascaras and hand creams in my stash so I don’t see myself using the Tarte mascara and the Tony Moly hand cream anytime soon. And, I am a little bit weirded out by the Hanalei powder cleanser but I am willing to give it a shot. Play! by Sephora definitely deserves a point for this category.

Quick recap before I share my final verdict for this month’s bags.

  • # of items – Play! by Sephora
  • Quality of Bag – Ipsy
  • Shipping & Delivery – Ipsy
  • Personal Value – Play! by Sephora

Clearly, each bag has its pros and cons. I don’t have anything bad to say about the value of both bags. You can never go wrong with these beauty bags. It’s $10 a month and you get amazing samples. Honestly, it will all boil down to which one you prefer. So, FOR THIS MONTH ALONE, my beautiful vote goes to the Play! by Sephora bag. This is a surprise for me too because I wasn’t so obsessed with the previous Play! bags I received. I primarily received more skincare or haircare products than makeup. You know I’m always craving for more makeup. But 4 out of 6 items from this month’s Play! bag are makeup. That’s why, I am choosing Play! by Sephora bag over Ipsy for the month of October.

My monthly fave may change depending on the items I get in my bags. I hope this helps you get a glimpse of what these bags offer. Let me know in the comment section if you want me to keep doing this kind of blog. Also, if there are other categories you want me to include in our scoring system aside from the ones mentioned, also type them in below. Should you have other questions, don’t hesitate to leave them below.

Feel free to share your own experience with these subscription boxes. If you decide to give any of these bags a shot after reading my blog, keep me posted by leaving a comment below.

Thanks for dropping by my page and I’ll chat with you again in the next one!

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Enjoy the rest of your day dolls!

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