Glossier has gotten quite a bit of attention over social media over the past year. Glossier’s advertising strategy is literally built around creating a ‘hype’. From their very ‘aesthetic’ Instagram feed, to their reps who show off how they use the products on their already-beautiful faces– Glossier seems to be advertising a lifestyle just as much as the products themselves. That lifestyle is the ‘chic makeup minimalist’– the girl who is busy and doesn’t have time to fuss with makeup but somehow always looks effortlessly gorgeous. Its the whole ‘model off duty’ thing. I don’t necessarily have anything against Glossier’s strategy, and it seems to be very effective…its just that I don’t find it particularly relatable.
I am not the “Glossier girl”– I have zits and fine lines forming all at the same time, and I really like makeup…a lot. My makeup strategy as of late has been just the opposite of minimalist. Heck, I will layer fifteen different products, all to create a “natural” look and I will enjoy the entire process. So, I am not going to disingenuously peddle a lifestyle that I can’t relate to with these reviews. Instead, I am going to look at some of their products, one-by-one, and review them for their own merit and how they fit onto my own imperfect face and beauty routine.
So I purchased the Milky Jelly Cleanser, the Stretch Concealer, Boy Brow in Brown, Cloud Paint in Puff, and two Gen G lip products, in Like and Jam. Lets start off with the only skincare product:
Milky Jelly Cleanser, $18
Having quite dry, sensitive skin as of late, this was the product that originally encouraged me to place an order. This face wash has a thick ‘jelly’ consistency that actually feels quite conditioning on the skin. It does not foam at all, but when rinsed left my skin feeling clean without being stripped (a product of leaving out sodium laureth sulfate, a frequently used foaming detergent, from the ingredients). Now, Glossier claims that this product can be used dry to remove makeup and wet as a typical cleanser. I found that this didn’t do the greatest job of removing makeup on its own– even non-waterproof. However, I really enjoy it as a morning cleanser and also as a second cleanser after removing all of my makeup and sunscreen through oil cleansing. If you need that foam and like a “squeaky clean” feeling from your face wash, then this product might not be for you. For sensitive skinned folks, though? This one is a win.
I use this product in the way that I have used Philosophy’s Purity Cleanser ($3/oz) and the Fresh Soy Cleanser ($7.45/oz). So, at $3/0z, before any 20% off discount (see bottom of page), I think it is priced fairly.
Stretch Concealer in Light, $18
I found that the shade descriptions on the Glossier site weren’t incredibly helpful…so I have included swatches of the shade light compared to other fair and light shades of concealer for reference.
This is a truly emolient concealer, which I figured would be nice for my dry skin. It is what I would describe as light-to-medium coverage. I enjoy light-medium coverage for my foundations, BB creams, and tinted moisturizers. However, if I have a zit or some serious under eye darkness to cover and I want to spot conceal– I want to be able to build coverage with a high-coverage concealer in those areas. So, for me, this product was kind of a bust. Because of the creamy texture, it didn’t adhere particularly well to my raised zits and was prone to creasing under my eyes. I think for now, I am just going to stick to my higher coverage alternatives.
One thing that I did like about the product is that the Light shade has somewhat of a peachy undertone, so I found that it did have some color corrective capabilities. I might use this for no-foundation, good skin days just under my eyes…but probably not much else.
This pot concealer is priced less expensively than other similar products like Benefit Erase Paste (higher coverage) and is almost half the price of the NARS Soft Matte Concealer (higher coverage, dryer), so I don’t find this product to necessarily be overpriced.
Boy Brow in Brown, $16
I love a good brow product, and this is a good brow product. It has a small spoolie brush, similar to Benefit’s Gimme Brow and Essence’s Make Me Brow. However, it has a much waxier consistency than those two products so I found that it holds the hairs in place better. The shade Brown matched my Anastasia Beverly Hills Brow Wiz in “Medium Brown” pretty perfectly. Because of the great shade match and hold, this has become a daily use staple for me. It looks great on its own for a natural, “windswept” brow sorta look (lol at my description, imagining my brows like this), or over a brow pencil for a more defined look. My only complaint is that a lot of product comes out on the brush, especially in the first few uses. I often have to wipe the brush off before use, wasting product, so that it doesn’t get gloopy on my brows– this could easily be corrected with a smaller stopper on the packaging. Considering that Benefit Gimme Brow is $24, and I consider this to be on par or better (depending on what you are looking for in a brow product), I think that this is also priced fairly well.
Cloud Paint in Puff, $18
So I am not a cream blush kinda gal– I just never have been! I have found cream color products to be difficult to blend easily and in the spots that you want them, and with a tendency to emphasize skin texture. So, I was a bit skeptical…but since this was a new release, I figured it would be worth a shot. It comes in a little squeezy tube, like acrylic paint– cute idea, Glossier. The product itself is very thin, almost watery but not quite.
I apply it by squeezing a tiny amount on the back of my hand, dipping my finger and dotting it onto my cheeks in exactly the spots where I want it. From there, I blending out with my finger pads. Because the consistency is much thinner than other cream cheek products, I found that this blended out easily and without any patchiness. It was also sheer enough where you can get a subtle flush (what I prefer) before building it up. This blended best over moisturizer or a non-matte foundation base (like a BB cream or tinted moisturizer)– definitely a product to use before powder products. I will definitely keep using this for more natural days, but it isn’t the sort of product that I would apply for a long shift in the hospital.
The shade Puff is a light, bright neutral pink that worked well with my skin tone. I am definitely interested in the shade Beam for a more peachy look.
Like the other products, this is priced lower than other cream cheek colors on the market.
Generation G Matte Lipsticks in Like and Jam, $18
I have seen these described as tinted lip balms– and these are definitely not tinted lip balms. Glossier describes them as diffused, sheer matte color intended to look like you have already blotted your lipstick. I think that that actually describes them perfectly. They have a normal lipstick “twist-up” tube, and feel waxy upon application. They are neither drying, nor hydrating– they seem to just keep in whatever moisture level is already there. On one swipe, the color is very sheer and can be built up for more color…but not really to full opacity.
Like is extremely sheer on me at first pass but can be built up to an exceptionally natural pink-y shade. I’m talking, so natural that it hardly looks like I have anything on my lips. For this reason, it is perfect for clinic and hospital days and can be found in my bag most of the time. Jam on the other hand is a really pretty bright berry– it is my wearable pop of color. Sure, they will transfer when you eat or drink. But my favorite part about these is that because they don’t have a ton of “slip,” they aren’t going to move all around your lip lines and travel around your face. I like these, much more than I thought I did. If you want sheer, matte, slightly buildable color than these are for you. But if you like the full “pow” of an opaque lipstick, I would look elsewhere.
These are the only products that I felt like were explicitly overpriced. There is a huge range of price points on lip products out there…however, those that are in a similar range like the MAC, Urban Decay Vice, and even Bare Minerals offer better packaging and pigment. Now that Colourpop is coming out with their “Blotted Lip” and “Ultra Blotted Lip” at $5 and $6 a pop, I wonder if these will remain relevant.
So here is my bare face, and then made up with only Glossier products. I am wearing the Stretch Concealer, Boy Brow in Brown, Cloud Paint in Puff, and Gen G lipstick in Jam.
I held off from purchasing Glossier products for such a long time due to the amount of hype. I’ve found in the past, with products that have that much hype tend to be disappointing. And if I’m being honest…I almost wanted them to not work for me. Despite this, for the most part, they really did. I actually appreciate how well-though and functional many of the products are. Am I a fan of their marketing strategy? Not really. But their products (at least 4/5 that I tried) actually receive my not-too-easily-acheived stamp of approval.
So, you are interested in trying Glossier for yourself? I am not a rep and have no aspirations to become one. However, when you check out Glossier does give you a link to share with friends. If you shop through my link, you will get 20% off of your purchase— and I also get a $10 credit. I will use this to review more products on here (if you are interested in a review part 2!). If you don’t want to use my link, no biggie! You can just head to the regular Glossier website and do your thing.
I hope that you found this helpful! Have you tried anything from Glossier? What are your thoughts on their marketing strategy? I’d love to chat more about it!
Have a lovely week!