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Ipsy Review – January 2016

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Ipsy is a monthly beauty and makeup subscription box. Each month you get full size or deluxe-sized products, plus a cute makeup bag. I think it’s one of the best value beauty subscriptions and a great way to build out your makeup collection on the cheap!


(FYI – Just like Birchbox, Ipsy sends out many different variations of their bag each month – so my review is just one of the bag variations you might receive!)

My Subscription Addiction pays for this subscription. (Check out the review process post to learn more about how we review boxes).


The Subscription Box: Ipsy

The Cost: $10 a month (free shipping)

The Products: Full size and samples of makeup and beauty products. (Plus a makeup bag!)

Ships to: US and Canada

Delivered via: USPS

Check out all of my Ipsy reviews and the Beauty Subscription Box Directory!

Visit the Ipsy Swap Page to swap for any of the items you see in this review!



Mr. Write (Now) Eyeliner from theBalm Cosmetics in Jac -FULL SIZE! Value $17

All subscribers received a shade of this eyeliner for their January glam bag. (Kind of amazing since it covers the cost of the subscription with just this one item!) I love that the shade I got isn’t just another black eyeliner. (I get way too many of those in subscription boxes). This shade is a bronze, and it goes on SO smoothly! It has good staying power too. (Swatched in lower photo).

Beau Gachis Paris Smudge Brush – Value $12

Ipsy tends to send out a lot of makeup brushes – and I love it! I can’t remember the last time I bought eyeshadow brushes. (Thanks, subscription boxes!)


Hikari Cosmetics Cream Pigment in Mink – FULL SIZE! Value $13

Here is a closer look at the eye shadow:


This is a cream-to-powder shimmery eye shadow. I like the coloring, and it isn’t super pigmented, so you can get a subtle look if you prefer. I swatched it below (the color shown took 3 swipes to get that amount of color).



Pur-Lisse Blue Lotus 4-in-1 Eye Adore Serum – 7 ml Value $30

Wow! The full-size version of this serum is 15 ml and costs $65! I was not expecting this little sample to be so valuable! The formula itself is refreshing and gentle on my skin, so this is a win!

Mitchell and Peach Body Cream in English Leaf – 1 oz Value $8.30

I’m on the fence with this body cream. The formula itself is great – moisturizing and absorbs quickly. I’m just not sure I like the fragrance, though. I keep smelling it trying to decide, so I definitely don’t hate it…

Verdict: This box has a value of about $80! That’s amazing for a $10 subscription box. (And that’s not counting the value of the makeup bag!) I’ll use everything with the possible exception of the body cream, so I’m happy. What do you think of the January Ipsy Glam Bag? Which products did you get this month?

Written by Liz Cadman

Liz Cadman

Liz is the founder of My Subscription Addiction. She’s been hooked on subscription boxes since 2011 thanks to Birchbox, and she now subscribes to over 100 boxes. Her favorites include POPSUGAR Must Have, FabFitFun, and any box that features natural beauty products!
All views in this review are the opinion of the author. My Subscription Addiction will never accept payment in exchange for a review, but will accept a box at no cost to provide honest opinions on the box. This post may contain affiliate/referral links. Read the complete My Subscription Addiction disclosure.


  1. February 2016……..Ipsy bag was quite a disappoint to me..I got 4items an a brush…….it seems whoever is packing the bag is ripping me off…..saw on Facebook everything…very very very upset……thinking of ending my subscription been a year or two…an items are getting less an Les……

  2. For those of you who are happy with their subscriptions, what does your profile look like? What did you select as your must have makeup? What were your skin concerns?

  3. Our bags are identical, except I received Open Your Eyes Eye Contour Lifting Fluid instead of the 4 in 1 eye serum. I love everything in the bag except the lotion, because I can’t get past the smell! :/ This bag still rocks, though! 🙂

  4. Hated Ipsy. My first bag was alright and it’s nice to see some people items other than eye makeup. They didn’t listen to my style profile at all. The theme seemed to overtake everything else. When I contacted customer service they pretty much said oh well hope the next one is better. I canceled after that. They also push way to much for advertisement from their subscribers.

    Pretty much everything is post this on Facebook Instagram, twitter. It got annoying fast

  5. I received the lip balm, eye shadow trio, smudger brush, Hey Honey eye lift serum and the purple eyeliner. This was my first bag and I thought it was cute. Although, I had hoped the bag would be a little sturdier – with a metal zipper instead of plastic.

  6. Absolutely disliked the scent of the lotion. I thought it was because I wasn’t feeling well and at the time all smells got to me. But nope, tried it again when I was better and still didn’t like it. It’s gone. Loved everything else I received.

  7. I received an OFRA universal brow pencil which really isn’t a “universal” color. I think it’s a little too dark for me but it’s okay. I got the same eyeliner in the bronze color, an eyeshadow from J Cat that I do really like, skyn wipes which were okay I guess, and Jelly Pong mascara that I had an awful reaction to 🙁

  8. Ok now I feel guilty…I received this exact bag except I somehow was slipped two samples of the eye cream. So my bag has a $120 value 🙂

  9. I loved my first Ipsy bag! I wish I had received the purple liner and the Hikari shadow. I got the bronze liner, the body cream and eye serum which have been mentioned, a City Colors eyeshadow trio, and an eyeshadow brush from Coastal Scents which had a 25% off coupon for their site.

  10. I got that lotion too and I hated it! About 10 minutes after I put it on I thought, “what the heck smells like flea medicine?!?!? Ewwww the lotion!” Lol

    • I actually thought the lotion was awesome. I like how smooth it went on. It was not greasy feeling at all. It had a pleasant clean scent that didnt linger.
      Guess the smeller is different on people. I liked it.

  11. Maybe you guys have received these or tried them in the past?:
    Peek – Natural Stain Eyebrow Powder Expresso
    Hey Honey – Eye contour fluid

    I also got the plum colored Mr. Write eyeliner, Hanalei lip scrub, and the Binkle eyeshadow in Tangerine.

  12. I’m wearing the bronze eyeliner today and I really like it. It’s not a shade I would have picked myself so I’m glad it was in my bag.

    • I got the bronze eyeliner too. I have never wore eyeliner before and the shade is not something I would have chosen for myself. It has been fun wearing it and seeing how much I really do like it. This is my first ipsy box. I am so ready for February’s box…..

  13. I couldn’t be more happier. First totally awesome Ipsy bag to date for me! I received the Purlise, The Balm Eye Liner, Jelly Pong Pong mascara & Marsk mineral eye shadow. I think all of my items were full size. Not sure though because I gave my mother the lip scrub (I have Philosophy so I didn’t need any more) so I didn’t get the size before I gave it to her. So figure $69 with Purlise, Pong mascara & the Balm liner. $22.50 for the Marsk mineral eye shadow & don’t know about the sugar scrub. But wholly moley! That’s $91.50 in things plus the sugar scrub. Hot damn!!!

  14. This will be my first Ipsy, it arrives on Saturday, I am very excited!

    • This was my first bag also. I was extremely!y pleased with it. I think you will be too.

  15. I got a crazy high value bag, too! AND I got the one thing that I really wanted: the Jelly Pong Pong Fairy Lashes mascara. I have Problem Lashes (but only on my right eye – weird) and this is the ONLY mascara that doesn’t flake or smudge off. Believe me, I’ve tried just about everything.

    JPP mascara = $22
    Pur-lisse Blue Lotus eye cream = $30
    The Balm eye liner = $17
    City Color eyeshadow trio = $6
    Lasting Smiles lip balm = $4
    Total = $79!! Holy moly!

    • I got the exact same bag as you and was blown away at how great it was — I had almost cancelled after December! So glad I didn’t now. I hope ipsy keeps it up!

  16. My bag matched yours this month. I liked everything I received. However like you I’m on the fence about the body cream. I keep smelling it hoping it will grow on me because I do like the formula and it’s a good sample size.

  17. My Mr. Write Now eyeliner, despite being wrapped in plastic, was all dried out and crumbly. Anyone else have this problem?

    • Mine wasn’t dried out or crumbly (although the plastic wrap was a pain to get off). You might want to email Ipsy customer service about getting a replacement. I don’t think it’s supposed to be dry and crumbly.

    • yep, my eyeliner broke —i emailed customer service, saying that i thought it was probably an old product. they responded and said they are sending me a new one, sorry, etc. haven’t received it yet, but i wonder if the new one will crumble also.

      • Do let us know what condition the one is in when you get it.

      • I took y’all’s advice and emailed them, and a nice man responded to me within 5 minutes (wow!). He said they’d ship me a replacement immediately. I wonder if it was just an old batch of the plum? My friend got the bronze-y one and it was perfectly good. I’ll let you all know what shape the replacement is in!!

        • Today, 1/30, I got my replacement Mr Write Now pencil. It is so much better! Creamy & smooth. I definitely had a bad batch before! Glad I took this advice!

    • I really do not care for the eyeliner. It does not glide on easy for me. I couldn’t figure out what it was but I think it must be dried out as well.

  18. I was skeptical of that Hikari cream eyeshadow “Mink” – in the jar, it seems like just another blah metallic brown, which is so overdone in sub boxes. But it’s actually a subdued bronze-pink, as shown in the swatch in Liz’s post. Very weird, but REALLY wearable. Plus, I wore it with a primer and it stayed all day, no creasing or disappearing, which is a miracle for cream shadow. Worth the whole box right there.

  19. Loved my bag! I received the Ofrah eyebrow pencil and it’s one of my favorite things. I didn’t think I would like it but I love it. The make up wipe I will save for travel, and I loved my eyeshadow duo. Haven’t tried the eyeliner yet but I agree with the previous comment, my bags keep getting better and better!

  20. My bag this month was very disappointing. I got the eyeliner in bronze, which is fine. But, the eyebrow pencil is awful. I also got the City Color Cosmetics Eyeshadow Trio and the tre’StiQue Lip Crayon – both of which I’ve received before (the lip crayon only three months ago, in the same shade, the other about 6 months ago!) and an Aveeno moisturizer. Seriously? Aveeno? Seriously thinking about cancelling – I update my profile and review products (I gave the lip crayon a terrible review, yet still got a duplicate!) Ugh….

    • I had this problem last month and I cancled. I never get anything in the spoiler or anything matching my quiz what so ever. When I asked them why they said to update my quiz but why when it’s the stuff I want & never get. I had a melted lip liner and a lipstick that was melted and when I took the cap off it fell on the floor because it was broken too. I also got the aveeno lotion which is less than a doller at target and I’m with a beauty box for new amazing products to try. Not stuff I can get a the dollar store or melted broken junk.

  21. I got the bronze eyeliner, which is great. And also an Ofra eyebrow pencil (not great), the city colors eye shadow trio and I can’t remember the other two items. I’ve gotten a few of these cruddy Ofra eyebrow pencils before and the eyeshadow was crumbling right away. They are both throw aways for me. I finally cancelled Ipsy.

    I enjoy the eyeliner so that makes this month okay for me. I would have loved getting the Purlisse eye serum

  22. I got the same eye serum and eyeliner along with a mascara, a lip balm, and an eyeshadow trio. Mine also ended up being around $80 in value, and I’m extremely happy.

  23. I got the same eyeliner color. I love theBalm! This eyeliner is so much better than the Be A Bombshell mechanical eyeliner I received in my November Ipsy bag. It goes on 100 times easier for one thing!
    I also got:
    City Color Cosmetics Eyeshadow Trio–wasn’t impressive on its own but I got good results by using a bit of the IPKN primer I got from my January Birchbox on my eyelids first and then putting the shadow over it.
    Hanalei Lip Scrub–really liked this, glad to have it.
    Skyn Iceland Cleansing Wipes–Not super exciting but these will definitely get used.
    Crown Brush Brow Duo Brush–I wasn’t excited for this because I don’t use brow products, but I had a Pixi by Petra brow powder I never opened from my September Ipsy bag so I gave this brush and the powder a try and what do ya know? the results were pretty nice. I may have to rethink the lack of brow products in my make up routine!

  24. Bag twins!

  25. Nice bag !! I’ve got : Eyeliner in bronze (17$), the island wipes (7$), the body cream (8.30$), the crown brow brush (3.28$) and the City Color Cosmetics Eyeshadow Trio in Falling Leaves (5.99$). Total bag : 40$ without the value of the bag ! which is really good for a 10$ bag ! + I love everything in it !
    Ipsy usually has higher value than Birchbox but the point system from birchbox is so awesome that I keep going with this 2 subscriptions !!

  26. Same feeling here about the English Leaf scent. I just use it on my legs, where the smell doesn’t reach my nose… LOL

  27. i like my ipsy bags also i think i have only had one month since april that i was kind of meh about… but i wish i could get the makeup brushes i have received one since i started in april and that is it

  28. I got the exact same bag, except a different shade of liner, and finally for the first time in ages it feels like there is a relatively cohesive feel to my bag. I like the scent of the lotion personally. It grew on me pretty quick and doesn’t stay too strong once on.

  29. I received the Mr Write (Now) in the purple shade – it’s really pretty! I also received a Hanalei sugar lip scrub, Burt’s Bees Cleansing Oil, Pixi eyeshadow duo, and a Skone smudger brush. I think my bag’s value is around $40-45, well worth the $10 (which my husband pays anyway as my birthday gift, ha!) but the huge variation in value is so odd. I really want to try that eye serum as what I’m currently using isn’t my fave.

    • I got the exact same bag as you!
      I also agree, you’d think it would be a little closer in values… but either way I’m still happy

    • This is exactly what I got! I’m glad I got the purple liner; it really sets off my green eyes.

  30. You got a great bag this month! I would’ve loved to have received that pur lisse eye cream! I really like ipsy too. Great value for $10. 4 out the 5 things I got are full sized too! Jelly pong pong mascara ($22), mr write now in the bronze shade ($17), ofra universal eyebrow pencil ($13), blinkle eye shadow in tangerine ($4.99), and skyn Iceland wipes 10 ct ($7). Great bag this month.

  31. I have been very happy with all of my Ipsy bags. Granted, I am new to subs, just started Ipsy in October. I since added Boxycharm, and this month decided to try out Birchbox.
    I see a lot of others complain about getting things they don’t like in Ipsy, but each month mine seems to get better. Maybe I just am happy with anything, since I don’t have a big collection. Plus I finally saved up enough points to get the Brazilian leave in conditioner, which I am so excited to receive next month!
    I think Ipsy has been great, because I am forced out of my comfort zone into trying new make up tricks, which has greatly improved my day to day looks!

  32. I got the exact same bag as you did, and I feel the same about the lotion. Its nasty when you first put it on, but after about 10 minutes I kind of like it. I can’t describe it.

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