After months of staying indoors and shopping online for all of our much needed beauty products; beauty stores such as Sephora and Ulta have opened their doors to their customers but with restrictions. Shopping before COVID-19 was easy, you could just go in and ask a beauty advisor their suggestion on what was the best product for you. You could test it out, get samples, and event get makeovers at the stores. I have enjoyed being a loyal rewards member of both Sephora and Ulta. To say the least, I was excited to go out and buy some new beauty products, such as the new Huda Beauty Mascara (which I am still unable to purchase due to unavailability). My first stop was Sephora.
Shopping at Sephora:
First, I was stopped outside of the store and had to wait in line. The floor was marked with spots of where to stand. Good thing was there was only one family ahead of me on the line. Before entering the store an employee came up to me and asked that I wash my hands with hand sanitizer. It was then explained that I was not allowed to touch anything in the store. An employee/beauty advisor must touch the products for me and put it in a basket for me. I also must be wearing a mask to enter. When it came my time to enter (the employee held the door opened for me, they are really keen on us costumers not touching much). A beauty advisor was standing as I entered the store. She handed me a basket and away I started asking for the products that I needed. When I was done, I headed to checkout. Because of them limiting how many people could enter the store, I was the only person in line to check out. When checking out there is now a glass between you the customer and the employee. The woman who checked me out had a small black spray bottle and she told me she was sanitizing each item before putting it in the the famous Sephora bag. I checked out and when I was right by the door, an employee opened it for me to leave.
It was much faster shopping due to limited amount of people. All the employees I encountered were nice. I was also happy that I didn’t have to wait long to enter the store. Overall, it was quick, easy and fast with the new Sephora shopping experience.
Sephora is pretty keen on not much touching, which for me takes away the more fun from getting to see the products. It was awkward having to ask the employee to touch everything for me. I also felt like I had all eyes on me because they wanted to make sure I was following social distancing rules and no touching (I thinking I had emphasized it enough now).
Shopping at Ulta
When I arrived there was no line and I just simply walked in. No one was holding the door for me, which was different to say the least. Once I entered, there was a beauty advisor standing at the front. She had hand sanitizer and explained that I am allowed to touch and shop without a beauty advisor and that the whole store is constantly being sanitized. She told me the hand sanitizer was just there that I didn’t have to put on before shopping. Then I simply started shopping. I felt like the staff was friendly and nice. I did not feel the same pressure that I felt in Sephora. I found the two beauty products that I needed and headed for the check out. The floor was marked of where to stand. I was the only one on line and simply walked up to the cashier. There was glass protection at the cashier. The lady did not sanitize my products like they did in Sephora. When I left I washed my hands with the hand sanitizer. Overall, my trip to Ulta was fast.
I did not feel the pressure like I did in Sephora. I was able to walk around the store and find all the beauty products I needed. There was barely anyone in the store. The staff also was very kind and made me want to return.
I did not like that they were not sanitizing my products like Sephora before putting it in my Ulta bag at checkout. Also, I felt like the beauty advisor in the front was very laxed about cleaning. I did not see anyone cleaning the whole time I was there.
Overall, I was happy to be out of the house after a long quarantine. I love shopping for makeup. Personally, I enjoy shopping at both Ulta and Sephora and will continue to shop at both. Let me know your experiences shopping at both stores? Was it similar and/or different?