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Ipsy Glam Bag Ultimate Review – January 2020

Ipsy Ultimate January 2020 makeup and beauty subscription box review

Ipsy Glam Bag Ultimate is a monthly makeup and beauty subscription box. Each month includes 8 full-sized items & 4 deluxe samples, in addition to a beauty bag! 

open peach colored box with hot pink interior

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

large group shot of all items

About Ipsy Glam Bag Ultimate

The Subscription Box: Ipsy Glam Bag Ultimate

The Cost: $50 a month + free US shipping. Save with an annual subscription.

The Products: 8 full-sized products & 4 deluxe samples

Ships to: The US for free and Canada for $2.95

Our Ipsy Glam Bag Ultimate January 2020 Review


We didn’t receive much of an info booklet this month which was kind of a bummer because I like to read through each of the products and this has no product info.


This month our bag is a white and grey marble print with pink accents. Very polished and chic!

Now, on to the items!


essenHERB Tea Tree Toner Pads, 20 pads

I immediately liked these little pads for a few reasons. They are resealable and utterly portable. They are also a more gentle tea tree formula, which suits my drier skin just fine. It is nice to get the benefits of this clarifying oil without the dryness I have experienced before. This pack contains 20, so I plan on keeping them tucked away in my purse for those days I am feeling gross and need a face refresh.



Avette Daily Fresh Squeeze Mask Pair – Retail Value $4.00

I am a sheet mask addict, so I am always happy to see a few in a box, especially if it is a new-to-me brand. These are distributed by TONYMOLY, a brand I already know and love, so I was pretty excited. I received a coconut and a lychee pair. Both were wonderfully hydrating and refreshing without being sticky. They were both well-fitting and have a clear serum with loads of coconut water.


F.A.R.A.H Brushes 160F Face Brush – Retail Value $12.00

It is so cute that the brush handle ties in perfectly with our cute bag. The head is dense with blush pink and white synthetic bristles and the shape is angled, meaning it works really well for blush, bronzers, or a dusting of your favorite highlighter.


AHAVA Time to Hydrate Essential Day Moisturizer, 2.5 fl oz – Estimated Value $66.18 (Buy 1.7 oz for $45.00)

AHAVA products can be hit or miss for me because I don’t always love the scent. This one is quite nice, lighter than their normal fare, clean, and oceanic. The weight of this moisturizer is on the lighter side but still packs a punch, making it ideal for day use. The finish is also nice, slightly powdery and velvet, which works well under my makeup or on a fresh face.


Touch Flesh Highlighting Balm in ‘Startle’, 0.13 oz – Retail Value $18.00

I was really curious about this brand because I find the branding half cute and half uncomfortable. Flesh? Hmm… I like little cream sticks like this a lot, especially for the days where I go makeup-free and just want to enhance my already pretty clear skin. I like this stick a lot! The finish is really dewy and natural, and not noticeably “shimmery” if you will. It looks great on the highest points of my cheeks and down my nose. I love it on bare skin and even underneath liquid foundation for an inner glow. This was a winner for me!

Very smooth and pretty!


Pretty Woman Nail Polish in ‘Don’t Be Jelly’, 0.3 fl oz – Retail Value $7.99

I am always curious about new (to me) nail polish brands, especially now that I am doing my own nails (poorly). This shade is very pretty, and looks like a blackened jam with lovely red and purple overtones. It applied really evenly and could certainly be a one-coater. The brush was a good size, even for my little nails. My only complaint is that it didn’t dry very fast, and I ended up denting the coats when I put my hands into my pockets after about 10 minutes.

Still painting my nails like a 5-year-old.


Sweet Chef Kale + Vitamin B Serum Shot, 30 ml – Retail Value $20.00

First off, how cute is this brand? I love the super cute green kale theme. The serum itself is thicker and has a lavender scent that I loved. As far as serums go, this one wasn’t as heavy-hitting as I prefer, but I do have really dry skin. This is probably suited more to normal to oily skin. The main trip of ingredients in here are aloe, kale, and vitamin B. While I passed this on to a friend with lighter skincare needs, I am really curious about other items from this affordable brand.


Thisworks Deep Sleep Pillow Spray, 75 ml  – Retail Value $29.00

I feel like this product is pretty regular in subscription boxes, though I think this is the first time I have gotten a full-size bottle! Will has always had trouble sleeping, and though he doesn’t think anything ever helps, I like to spray down the sheets with lavender because I find it soothing, and I always want it to help him however it can. At the very least, it really sets such a peaceful tone to the bedroom, so I am happy to have more of this.


Thrive Causemetics Liquid Lash Extensions Mascara, 0.38 oz – Retail Value $24.00

I am so thrilled that this was in my bag!! One of my favorite local makeup artists swears by this mascara, so it has been on my ‘want to try’ list. The tube itself is metal and has a lot of weight, adding to the luxe feel! The brush head is a silicone type, with little bristles that taper to a point. I loved this mascara. It is certainly not one of those over-the-top volumizers, but it gave my lashes length and a wispy feel, coating each lash in pure black pigment.


Hey Honey Take the Drama Away Peel Off Mask, 60 ml – Retail Value $49.00

What a pretty mask! It looks like liquid bronze when you apply it, and dried down to a paper-thin wafer finish you can peel away. I am always a little selective about where I apply masks like this because I have a “furrier” face and if I use this too close to my jawline it really, really hurts to remove! I saved it for my nose and forehead, and I absolutely saw pore size reduction. It left my skin feeling very soft, and—thankfully—not dry.


theBalm Alternative Rock Vol. 2 Palette, 7 fl oz – Retail Value $27.50

Finally, our last item is a palette with 6 shadows and a bronzer, blush, and highlighter. I like all the colors here and think this is a great purse type of palette because it really has most everything you would need for a nice natural look all in one place. The pigment levels are great and the colors of the face powders all work really well for me. The blush especially is quite lovely, and a lot more demure than I usually wear, making for something new for my cheeks this spring. The highlighter is smooth and very natural, and that bronzer is on the lighter side and a little more neutral, which actually really works for my pale skin.

Here are the eyeshadows top to bottom: Let Me Zinc About It, Don’t Give a Schist, Sodium Fine, Amirite?, As Xenon TV, The Parents Argon

And here are the bronzer, blush, and highlighter: None of Your Bismuth, Bare Minimum, Nickel Buy You Dinner

Verdict: This box was hard to calculate value-wise, but I know there is at least $191.49 even without the AHAVA and the tea tree pads. That is a great value for a $50 box. I thought this box had a lot of good stuff inside, and I feel like Ultimate is finding its stride a little more as we go along. The highlights for me here are the Thrive mascara, palette, pads, and the Flesh highlighter. I also was really impressed with the serum even if it wasn’t for me, and I thoroughly enjoyed the masks, pillow spray, and day cream. All in all, I thought this box was a lot of fun and I enjoyed it very much.

To Wrap Up:

Can you still get this box if you sign up today? Possibly! As of publication, there was no Ipsy waitlist. Check here to see what month you’ll get first.

Value Breakdown: This box costs $50 so each of the 11 items has an average cost of $4.55 (not including the bag!). I counted the pair of masks as a single item, but if you split them up the estimated cost per item drops even more!

Check out all of our Ipsy Glam Bag Ultimate reviews and the best beauty subscription boxes of 2020, as recommended by our readers!

Keep Track of Your Subscriptions: Add this box to your subscription list or wishlist!

What do you think of the January Ipsy Glam Bag Ultimate? Which items did you get?

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Written by Megan


I love natural/vegan beauty products, Korean skincare, unique jewelry, and weird candies from far away places. When I am not waiting for my next exciting box you can find me painting or taking photographs of interesting people. I never leave home without pug hair somewhere on my shirt and a bold lipstick on my smile.

Posted in Beauty Subscription Boxes, Ipsy Glam Bag Ultimate Reviews, Makeup Subscription Boxes, Subscription Box Reviews, Subscription Boxes for Women| Tags: ipsy glam bag ultimate | 22 comments

Comments (22)

  1. Does anyone have the January glam bag ultimate, just the bag, that they would be willing to sell me. I’m trying to find it to use it as a bag to hold my stuff when I go back and forth to the NICU to visit my new baby girl

  2. When I first saw the Ahava moisturizer I missed that it was a facial one and used it for my hands. It works great for dry hands and to use as a good hand lotion to carry around in your purse.

  3. As mentioned above this box was definitely missing an item. The sheet masks counted as one item. I did receive a detailed booklet that listed the price of each item.

    • Hmm, I will have to see if we can reach out and figure out what we were missing. Thanks for the heads up!

  4. I think this is a pretty great box! I would have been happy with this mix of products.

    • Me, too. Great mix.

  5. I should have picked up that highlighter when they had those second chance add ons. So pretty 😍

  6. My box as the same. So far, the worst ultimate in my opinion.

  7. I absolutely LOVED my January Ultimate Box too! I received an exceptional value for my $50! I even added on a few things like the Huda Emerald Obsessions palette, that adorable snowflake key chain which was allot larger than I was expecting it to be! I chose the mini flat iron as my monthly choice item. Love the bag itself, the Kale serum is one of my favorite items actually. Instantly absorbed & hydrated my face with zero stickiness or icky scent. I also received the Hey Honey mask, Ahava, that beautiful brush, toner pads, sheet masks, the “Matt(e)” Balm palette & more. Thrilled with this month’s bag for sure.

  8. I’ve been drooling over theBalm Alternative Rock palette for EVER. If anyone is looking to swap theirs… I’ve been on swapcation since October, but I could be persuaded to come back sooner!

  9. Don’t hurt your hairs trying to pull off a mask! If it doesn’t come off easily, just use a wet cloth, towel, even a paper towel to get it off. Especially if it’s your eyebrows where you don’t want to pull out the hair.

    I too find Pretty Woman nail polish slower to dry. It’s kind of thick. Just settle down to a tv show or movie and do your nails if you’re using something like this.

    • A coat of Seche saves me from myself every time!

    • I always forget I don’t have to just pull masks like this off. There is something so satisfying about pulling it off in one sheet! I need to def. be more gentle next time.

    • Question for those that received the Eden Breeze body butter. Unless I’m misreading the EXPIRATION DATE appears on the back exactly as: 18/09/22 does this mean it expires on 09/18/22 OR did it expire 09/22/18? Anyone?

      • It’s just the European/rest of the world date order, so September 18, 2022.

  10. I had almost this exact box but I think you are missing an item? I had 12 and you have 11. The masks only count as one sample size and you should have one more sample.

    • Thanks for the heads up! I will see if I can reach out and figure out what went missing <3

  11. That vitamin b kale serum is amaaazzzing! It absorbs so quickly and I already see a difference in my skin. Plus you mix it with their other serum for even better results!

  12. I was disappointed that there was not a card either. I liked to know the great value I am getting for $50. I’ve gotten 2 nail polishes so far even though I marked them as rarely wanting or whatever the least amount is so that went in my donation box. Same with the peel mask, not a fan of them in general. Still happy with the value of the box overall.

  13. I tried a packet sample or two of that Ahava day cream last year, and they were enough for me to instantly realize I was in love with that moisturizer, and if the day ever came when I actually need to purchase a day cream (ya, right! 😀 ), that one would be toward the top of my list. 🙂

    I’ve never subbed to Ultimate, but this does look like a fun box!

    • what did you love about it? i got it but didn’t break the seal because i planned on gifting/selling it. but i might just keep it if it’s truly worth keeping…

      • Honestly, my thoughts were the exact same as what Megan said about it! It has a really nice light weight to it, but yet it’s very moisturizing… but not in a heavy sort of way, and it leaves a smooth finish/feel to the skin. 🙂

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