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IPSY Glam Bag Plus Review – December 2020

Megan K.
ByMegan K.Jan 15, 2021 | 51 comments

Ipsy Glam Bag Plus
4.2 overall rating
247 Ratings | 33 Reviews

IPSY Glam Bag Plus is a $25 a month subscription box from IPSY. Every month you’ll receive 5 full-sized beauty products. The box will have a retail value of at least $120. (This box was voted as a best makeup subscription box and a best beauty subscription box by MSA readers!)

FYI, COVID-19 Update: Keep up-to-date on Ipsy shipping delays right here.

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

About IPSY Glam Bag Plus

The Subscription Box: IPSY Glam Bag Plus

The Cost: $25 a month (free U.S. shipping)

The Products: Full-size makeup and beauty products every month.

Ships to: The U.S. for free

Our IPSY Glam Bag Plus December 2020 Review


Here is our info card for the month. No specific item list this time.

My drawstring bag arrived with a deep red, boucle fabric.

Now, on to the items!


Smith & Cult Nail Polish in ‘Bitter Cashmere Daydream’, 14 mL – Retail Value $18.00 (this color looks sold out, but there are others!)

This was my choice item!

Anytime I see a Smith & Cult polish as a choice in any box, I snag it!! I don’t have a great relationship with nail polish. It barely sticks to my nails for more than 2-3 days. But something about the S&C formula can usually get me to 4 or 5. The coverage is always great with this brand too, and I have never needed more than 2 coats. This minty shade seemed like a great choice for winter, spring, and even summer. It does look like this shade used to be called ‘Bitter Buddhist’ before it was changed to ‘Bitter Cashmere Daydream’ (what a mouthful). So if you are looking to track this one down, you might need to search for the older name.

Here it is on my nails.


IBY Fireside Palette, 9 shades – Retail Value $15.00

IPSY chose this item for me!

I have a ton of palettes… but somehow I still love getting them in boxes. Seriously, they just make me happy. This one feels very much like a fall palette, but it would totally work for winter too. There are 5 shimmers and 4 mattes inside and other than the green and ruby shade, they are all pretty neutral. I thought the shimmers had incredible coverage and a buttery smooth feel. The mattes weren’t as easy to swatch but performed well on my actual lid and with a brush rather than my fingertips. The shimmers worked better with my fingers as there was a lot of fallout with my brushes. I especially loved the pale ‘Below Zero’ shade right under my brow.

Top to bottom: Below Zero, Snowbunny, Hot Cocoa, Nippy, and S’mores

Top to bottom: Evergreen, Hoodie, Cozy Up, and Black Ice.


Pūrlisse Matcha Green tea Antioxidant Priming Moisturizer, 1.7 fl oz – Retail Value $35.00

This was my choice item!

In hindsight, I should have researched this a bit more before I chose it. It is best for “oily, combination, normal, and even sensitive” skin, where mine is dry dry dry. It is understandable that I found this to feel almost too light to make a difference on my face. It has the feel of a gel moisturizer, which is going to be great for skin that isn’t mine. I think I got too excited about the green and white tea inside! If you don’t have super dry skin, you might just love this. The formula is full of antioxidants from tea, vitamin E, and marine plant extracts. I did see that Isopropyl Palmitate was the second ingredient, and this stuff is decently comedogenic. So if you are acne-prone, just take note!


Complex Culture Fill Out Brow Gel in ‘Warm Blonde’, 3 g – Retail Value $18.00

IPSY chose this item for me!

Complex Culture is an IPSY brand that people have strong feelings about on both sides, but I have yet to dislike a product from this line. This brow gel keeps that trend going because I thought it was quite nice. Would it beat my absolute HG brow gel? No. But it isn’t that far off and I would happily use this between tubes of my favorite. Using brow gels like this couldn’t be easier. Just use the spoolie to flick your brows into the shape you want to add a tint of color. Easy! I find this works best for someone with at least some brows and even better for someone with some fluffiness up there!


Dominique Cosmetics Skin Gloss in ‘Golden Dew’, 5 g – Retail Value $25.00

This was my choice item!

2020 was a year of me totally ignoring foundation. This was mostly because I went deep into masks as *fashion* and didn’t want to get makeup all over the inside of them. Ew. Highlighters, however, I have never used more. This extra time at home has given me even more time to focus on my skincare and while 2019 Megan would have been terrified of a cream highlighter due to my larger pores, 2021 Megan is into it. Just a few pats or swipes of this stuff right under my eyes, on my forehead, and down the center of my nose makes my skin look like I have been getting some great sleep (spoiler: I haven’t). It creates a radiance that looks more dewy than shimmery, and more natural/subtle than blinding. I am very happy with this choice.

Into it!

Verdict: I liked this IPSY Glam Bag Plus. The only item I wasn’t crazy about was totally an oversight on my end, and, hey, my mom is about to have a fun new primer. I loved the skin gloss, the nail polish, and even the brow gel. The palette was very pretty and performed well. The total value here is pretty awesome too: $111 for a $25 subscription. I will take that any day. 

To Wrap Up:

Can you still get this box if you sign up today? You’ll likely start with January as your first month. As of publication, there was no IPSY waitlist!

Value Breakdown: This box costs $25, meaning you are paying approximately the following per item:

  • Smith & Cult Polish $4.05
  • IBY Palette $3.38
  • Pūrlisse Primer $7.88
  • Complex Culture Brow Gel $4.05
  • Dominique Cosmetics Highlighter $5.63

Alternatively, each of the 5 items has an average cost of $5. 

Check out all of our IPSY Glam Bag Plus reviews and our favorite beauty and makeup subscriptions!

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

What do you think of the December IPSY Glam Bag Plus? Which items did you get?

IPSY is a personalized beauty subscription. Members take a short quiz to personalize their beauty preferences, then choose between two memberships. Glam Bag subscribers receive 5 deluxe samples for $13 per month, while Glam Bag Plus subscribers receive 5 full-size products for $28 per month. IPSY fe... read more.
Megan K.
Megan K.
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.

Megan K.
Megan K.
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.
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Hi! I’m looking to sign up for the ipsy glam plus bag but as a new member I don’t see where I can go to choose my three choice options. I messaged them directly to ask but thought it wouldn’t hurt to see if I could get some advice here. Also, if anyone cares to share, how would you compare ipsy glam bag to boxy charm? Thank you to anyone who might have in site on this!


Glam Plus bag choices are on first of the month. You will see them on February 1.


I thought it is on the 2nd.


I just got my December glam bag. It got stuck in a warehouse and then the tracking number disappeared. Ipsy resent December and credited 10 dollars for the smith and cult nail polish and the eye cream that were two of my choices, which were no longer in stock. But I love the rest! R&C Central hair mist, I’m sure I remembered the exact name incorrectly but you all know what I mean 😏, the Lovecraft blush trio and the Trestique eyebrow duo. All great products. Still worth 55 more than I payed even without the two items I missed.

I may be so excited because this is my first plus bag after years of the original Ipsy and it is so nice to get full size items. Plus with 3 choice picks available, it just made sense to upgrade.

I recieved January’s Plus bag already, and I like the Sarah Geller Tinted Moisturizer and the mascara a lot. Two lip oils were not that exciting and the peel off mask looks intriguing, but I have not tried it yet.

I updated my style quiz so that hopefully I will receive more skincare and an eyeshadow palette. Looking forward to February’s bag. I thought I would only allow myself 3 months of Ipsy plus and then quit them all together because how much more do I need? But this is too much fun. Maybe six months is better. lol


Thank you Megan for pointing out ingredients that are comedogenic. Would you mind listing again the main culprits to watch for? I have combo/oily skin so everything that works great for you doesn’t work well for me so I appreciate you mentioning suitability for “skin type” in your reviews since most manufacturer’s descriptions are usually vague & say “ALL types” & we all know too well that “one size does NOT fit all”! In anything! We even have individual preferences in water & air, the very things we can’t survive without! So I really like Ipsy allows choices. Though somehow this nail polish wasn’t even on my list to choose from & neither was this green tea moisturizer. I had blue lotus (which I picked as it specifically said for oily skin). I see that some products repeat from month to month on the “all sampled” list but I have not received repeats at all last year. So I am very happy with both Ipsy Glam & Plus bags. I cancelled my Ultimate after 4 months & have not subscribed for X due to product overload.


Well, I cancelled my glam bag x. I definitely have Fomo, but the more spoilers that come out, the more I realize it’s probably not for me. The beauty tool was probably the thing that really made me cancel. I don’t really mind getting makeup/skincare that I’m not going to use… but I don’t really want devices that I know will just sit around. Looking forward to my plus bag 🙂


Anyone know when Glam Bag Choice for February is? I can’t find it anywhere! Thanks!!!


Jan 25th. if you check your timeline, in your acct, it shows there. Plus choice is always on the 2nd and 3rd.


Ohhhhhhhhh I see where to find it now!!!!! Lol brilliant 🤣🤣🤣🤣 thanks!!! I learned something LOL.


Thank y’all so much!!!


If you’re looking for Glam Bag Plus choice time, I have bad news for myself, at least, if not you. Choice happens from the 1st to the 3rd of the month now.


This is a nice bag!

I recently picked up a couple of IBY palettes and I am impressed with the quality. Those colors aren’t really for me, although the green is lovely. I love that Purlisse moisturizer (I don’t understand how it is a primer, because I don’t wear foundation and usually use a silicone primer). I usually layer it with a gel-type hydrator. I’m definitely going to look for that Skin Gloss. I love cream highlighters, even though I have a ton of them lol.

Appreciate your review!


I got that polish and the cap came apart and it was clumpy as heck.😣

Christie Phillips

Mine fell apart too. I had to glue it back together. And is the cap supposed to have a dent in it?


All Smith and Cult products have dents. Its something about how nothing is perfect, or every thing is flawed in some way.


Yes! The dent is for aesthetics. Also the top is supposed to come off otherwise it’s very top heavy to actually paint your nails with the gold part of the came on. Think design form first, function second 🙂


There’s something about cream highlights that makes them so fun to play with. (I didn’t receive this one as a possible choice, though. 🙁)

I usually really like IBY shadows, but I haven’t been able to get this one to perform the way I’d like. My looks all end up a little muddy.


Awhile back, Megan, you posted something about how the Ordinary 30% AHA + 2% BHA peeling solution has helped you a lot with your skin. I have been having some stubborn issues of my own and decided to try it and it has helped me tremendously.

I think your reviews are fantastic and very thorough. Thank you for all the helpful information you have provided over the years.


Meghan, I love that you included a link to your HG brow gel! I haven’t opened my palette, but your swatches have peaked my interest


I can’t wait for your review! I signed up for X immediately, but in recent weeks I realized how much I already have (lol) and I’m thinking it ‘might’ be more makeup centric so I made the tough decision to back out. Plus is SO good! I’ll live vicariously through your box! I love your reviews.


I also asked to cancel X. I already have one of the “big” spoilers (Huda Rose Gold — Sephora once sent it to me by mistake 🤣), and I don’t like the look of the beauty tool spoilers that have surfaced.


what is the spoiled tool? pls?


How did you do that, did you have to contact IPSY support? I’ve been thinking about backing out as well after seeing some Plus spoilers that I liked a lot better but I didn’t see an easy way to change it through the account settings.


Yes, you need to message Ipsy support. I sure wish they would have placed a simple method to opt out on the site. I liked Plus spoilers better, too!


I pulled back out, too.


I’d think you’d be safe as long as you do before billing (Feb 1). I emailed customer service to back out.


I’m thinking of doing the same! Do you know when would be the last day?


Thanks for another honest and great review Megan. You are truly appreciated! I always enjoy reading your reviews, as well as the other authors on MSA.


The bag is pretty cute! I still haven’t got my regular Ipsy for December – it got stuck in a nearby city and hasn’t moved 🙁 But a lot of places are having shipping issues right now.

A good variety of products inside, too. I haven’t gone for plus since I don’t need that much new makeup every month, but I am going to try out X this February!


Mine got stuck too and it was shipped Dec 16! I reached out to CS and they are sending me a new December bag. I got my January GB today.


I still haven’t received my December plus. Ipsy finally agreed to send another one. Mine was mailed by dhl.


Personally, I would like others to review, other than Megan. Sorry “Snow.” You have had an overwhelming response to pretty much all of Megan’s reviews. Hmmm….Megan should not have full on reviewing boxes at the price point.


While reviews from different perspectives are cool, there’s a lot to be said for having one person reviewing a lot of boxes that have similar products, as they can “compare” the products to others they have tried.

When I first started getting into subs, it was like every product wowed me because it was better than the cheap stuff I’d tried before. Now that I’ve been using skincare and makeup regularly for a few years, I have a lot better sense of what makes a quality product – at least for my skin, or if a product is good and I’ll use, but not so great if repurchase again, etc.

Megan puts a lot of that time/experience based expertise into her reviews, so I look forward to reading them!


Completely agree. I would love to have Megan give me a facial and do my makeup! (I’ve never had a facial nor a professional do my makeup.)


A completely unnecessary remark.

Megan K.

Hey Ashley! We have been introducing new reviewers over the last year, so I hope you can find one who you enjoy. 🙂


Where is Marne? Did she get assigned to a type of box that I don’t read?


I prefer that one person reviews all the “big” boxes because I know that the perspective is consistent. Thank you Megan for what you do!


I think it’s completely fine that you do most of the big box reviews. You write well and although you have a positive overall vibe, you do tell us when something wasn’t for you (see the purlisse item in this bag). Liz did most of the main subscriptions, and now you do. I think it’s completely fine with most of us. There are plenty of reviews on the internet if someone wants a different POV.


And I’m regarding the numerous beauty boxes that are expensive (which I partake) in which Megan reviews. Your face can feel great when you cleanse, tone, spray, essence, moisturize, prime..and eye cream. But if you’re reviewing so many boxes, how do you have time? Do you have a full time job?


It isn’t any of Your business if Megan has a full time job or not. If you don’t like the reviews or MSA then don’t read the reviews.

Megan K.

This is essentially my full-time job. I am also a licensed and practicing esthetician.


Nice. I miss they hadn’t lost mine, then made a huge deal about replacing + everything is “sold out” so they didn’t even replace with other items. Second month in a row.


I always love my Plus. In fact, I have opted out of Ipsy X for February to stay with my Plus.

Megan K.

I am signed up for X, and I am very, very curious to see how it looks. I am hoping it lives up to the hype, but like you, I agree Plus is hard to beat!

Joy-Not the Other One

Megan would you mind sharing which category you have marked for this particular IPSY Plus bag that you receive every month? What I’m referring to is the 3 levels they ask you in the IPSY Beauty Profile at the beginning regarding your comfort level with make-up. They are something like this:

1. I’m a beginner-I’m not very comfortable with makeup
2.. I’m Somewhat comfortable-still learning
3. I’m a Pro-I Never leave the house without a full face

I know that’s not the exact phrasing above but it’s something close to that. I recently cancelled all of my IPSY bags but if I decide to sign back up I just wanted to know which category you went with because your bags are always excellent in my opinion while mine were always miles off the mark for me. If you wouldn’t mind sharing I would really appreciate it. Thanks!


I can’t wait for your review! I signed up for X immediately, but in recent weeks I realized how much I already have (lol) and I’m thinking it ‘might’ be more makeup centric so I made the tough decision to back out. Plus is SO good! I’ll live vicariously through your box! I love your reviews.


That brow gel is great!


Thanks for the review! I also got the IBY palette and was pleasantly surprised by the shadows, although I agree it was probably more of a fall color way. I liked my bag, and although I didn’t have any highlighters, I want to second that I love them as sometimes you can see the highlights above the top of my mask, and I might be able to trick someone into thinking that I have cheekbones. I did get blush in my box, which while fun to play with, will probably sit on a shelf for a while.

Megan K.

YES! I am so happy someone else is all about that mask + highlighter combo. Somedays it is all I can manage to even do, haha.


Megan, I did your ‘mask makeup’ today with the highlighter!

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