Sephora V. Ulta : The Great Debate

In this great country we call America, we have so many freedoms.  That freedom even extends to where you can buy your beauty products.

Of course there are your choices of drugstores, plus higher end makeup counters (ie. MAC, Clinque), but for many beauty lovers it’s either Ulta or Sephora, which both carry higher end brands, including Benefit, Too Faced, Urban Decay, Etc.

People seem to be very Coke/Pepsi on this one.  Loving one and hating the other.

Living in the great commonwealth of Massachusetts, I am fortunate to have each store in the vicinity.

Personally, I can never pick a favorite, but hopefully the few tips about each that I have can help you make better decisions as a shopper.

The Selection :

This is probably the toughest category to talk about for each store.

I really enjoy Ulta for all my lower end needs.  Firstly, they’re the only place around (for me at least) that carries NYX.  In case you’ve been living on another planet, NYX is super affordable and really great for the price.  I love to buy (hoard) their lipsticks, and their blushes are fabulous as well.  Ulta also has great great great deals on other drug store products.  For many brands, they’ll be “buy one, get one half off”.  This is how my ridiculous collection of the Maybeline Vivids came to be.

As far as high end products go, I hate shopping at Ulta.  I find that the selections are much smaller, as well as unorganized.  In particular, the Benefit section, which is one of my favorite brands, is hardly stocked with any of the products I’m looking for.  However, Sephora did recently stop carrying Lorac, which Ulta still does.

The sad thing about Sephora is their lack of drugstore products.  But, for higher end needs, they have huge selections.  They usually always have whatever I am looking for.  If I run out of something like my Bareminerals foundation, I’ll always head to Sephora.

The Service:

Honestly, I can only speak for my area.  But all in all, I have a better experience service-wise in Sephora.  Sure, in Ulta they’ll answer any questions I have.  Yet, they tend not to be as friendly.

Sephora, on the other hand, is amazing.  As soon as you walk in, an employee is asking if you need help, and if they can assist you in finding products that you’ll love.

The Points System:

The Sephora points system is great.  You get a point for every dollar you spend, and once you hit one hundred or five hundred you get a prize worth one of those values.  Wham, bam, thank yah m’am, easy, you’re done.

When I first started shopping at Ulta, their point system was like Sephora’s.  But then it changed to receiving a prize once a quarter.  Now I think you’re wracking up dollars as points?!  I’m not even sure!!  What I do know is that Ulta has completely lost me on their loyalty program.

Honestly, both stores are great, it just depends on what you need to buy.  Hopefully this post can help y’all figure out where you need to go for all your beautylicious needs.

Until next time.



Trying to Live That Blogging Lifestyle

Hey y’all!!

Welcome to Monograms and Makeup!  I’ve tried to blog countless times before, and after using WordPress in a journalism class, I knew this was the platform for me.

I love writing.  I’ve dabbled as a journalism major for the past year, but seriously flopped at doing actual reporting.  So it’s the business route for me.

But, what I love infinitely, more than writing, is buying beauty products.

I’m the ultimate girly girl.  If it comes in pink, I buy it.  If I can monogram it, I do.  Glitter it, bedazzle it, make it glam.  I aspire to be an everyday Elle Woods.  So, it was no surprise that during my junior year of high school,  my interest in makeup came about.  I’d watch countless youtube videos of collections and hauls.  That’s when it happened.  That’s when I became the makeup hoarder I am today.

Don’t get me wrong, I believe strongly in using everything I buy.  But of course I can’t help getting the same shade of a lipstick from different brands.  I love comparing and contrasting (it’s like science, right?).

I won’t lie and say I’m the best with makeup, but I do love trying out looks and products.  You can’t except any tutorials out of me, but I have countless reviews.

I hope through this blog, I can save busy women time and money by testing out different products to see what’s worth it, and what you should leave at Sephora.

Until next time!