Average Rating 3.0/5
Review by Kabuk1
Let me start by saying that I do not like being watched. I am an Aspie(Google it), and it makes me very uncomfortable to be observed. It is one of my biggest pet peeves to be stared at, especially when I'm trying to shop. Lately they've gotten better about it, but employees at my local Ulta used to follow people around the store & watch their every move like they're common criminals or something. I don't shoplift, and I really didn't appreciate being treated like a thief when all I'm trying to do is test some fscking lip gloss. I understand all about loss prevention, but be DISCREET or else you'll just run off the honest customers too. Example- One time about 6 years ago, the manager followed me around the store, literally standing about 8 feet away from me the whole time, with her eyes peeled. I wanted to say, "Can I help you, fatass?" but I'm a polite person so I held my tongue & ignored her. As I was paying for my items, I actually heard her say to another SA, "Well I didn't see her take anything, but maybe we got her on camera". I've never been so insulted in my life. I didn't set foot in that store for about 2 years after that. I actually wrote a complaint to the head office & got a level 5 gift certificate out of it, and believe me it was sweet redeeming it to the very same stupid fat bitch who thought I was stealing. That experience has stuck with me ever since and has really colored my impression of the store. I've gotten into the habit of always having my hands in clear view everytime I go in there, lest I get stalked some more. Like I said, lately they've gotten better, I will admit. I guess they had enough angry customers file complaints about being treated like thieves, lol...
The product selection in okay- they don't carry Kat Von D or Jane, which sucks. They carry almost the same low-end brands that Wal-Mart does, only they charge more. They really don't have much that I can't find at elsewhere for about $1 less per item. For example- my Cover Girl powder is around $5 at WM, at Ulta it's $5.99. Half the stock is always sold out, and its almost a guarantee that they won't have the one color that *I* want in any given item. The testers are health hazards, and most of the products have been opened & tested.
As for the salon- it flat-out SUCKS. I have gotten better haircuts at Fantastic Sam's. Hell, I do a better job by myself with sewing scissors & a hand-mirror. The first haircut I got there was in 2004, and when I got home I noticed that one side was shorter than the other. I got it cut again about a month ago after the HerStyler debacle(don't get me started on that damn thing!)- and when I got home I noticed that one side was shorter than the other, AGAIN. *sigh* For 50 damn dollars you'd think you'd get your money's worth right? Not only did I have to fix it myself when I got home, the idiot stylist re-fried my ends. The only reason I cut it to begin with was because it was really damaged from bleaching & using a shitty flatiron, so it really pissed me off to have this moron ruin my hair all over again. I had her cut it off to about where the damage ended, and then she started 'texturizing it', which translated to hacking random chunks out of it which I just found bizarre & unnecessary. After half-assing the blowdrying part(it was still damp when she was done), the ditzy bitch started spraying all kinds of gunk in it, babbling on about how I should always use 'protectant!'. Once my hair was crispy & loaded down with 8 pounds of styling shit, she then proceeded to flatiron it WHILE IT WAS STILL WET. I heard my hair sizzling, and expressed my concern over her scorching my hair, and she reassured me that the 'protectant!'(which was basically hairspray) would prevent damage. By the time she had wreaked her havoc, my hair looked and felt like a tumbleweed, and sure enough- my ends were burnt all over again. Dumb bitch. And it was the salon MANAGER that did my hair so I didn't even have anyone to complain to! Never again. The salon at Ulta is an effing JOKE, at least the one in Norman, OK is. I will go get my hair done at Supercuts for $12 from now on. Ugh.
Bottom line, Ulta is the dollar store of makeup stores. Not the good dollar store either(which would be Dollar Tree), but Dollar General, where you can get the same stuff as anywhere else, but where they round the prices UP & everything ends up costing more. Sephora is about 30 miles away & Ulta is only 2 or 3, so I said that yes, I'll repurchase only because it's much closer than Sephora. But still, I only go there when I have a coupon or if they're having a huge sale, or if I need something that I absolutely cannot find anywhere else. Like the Essence brand, or certain nail polishes.