|Would buy this product again.||71%|
Age: 18 & Under Skin: Acne-prone, Fair, Cool Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Brown
While many reviewers on this site tell true horror stories of mean and nasty SA's whose looks could kill, I've had a rather different experience with my Ulta.
To begin, the SA's there are fantastic! There are some truly spectacular ones who go out of their way for customers. I was once on a desperate hunt for a specific NYX product, so the manager called another Ulta farther away, found out they had one left, and drove over to get it for me. That is service. The worst SA experience so far has been ones that are only average. I haven't the slightest idea what their training program is like, but they rock it.
But this is where my love for Ulta ends. I shop there for two main reasons; sales, and because they are the ONLY store within a 15 minutes distance that sells NYX and Essence. NYX happens to be one of my all-time favorite makeup brands, and Essence has some old standbys of mine. I love browsing around, but those two displays frequently look like a tornado passed through them. Customers test whatever whenever, despite signs asking them not to, and more than once I've had to exchange these products when I brought them home and discovered they had been tested. The displays are also frequently messy and not too well cared for. To solve this, I'll call ahead of time to see when the next shipment is due, so I can get my hands on my favorite products, and hopefully it'll be stocked to the point where if an item has been tested, it wont be the only one in stock.
I really wish Ulta would take care of this testing issue. While they have marked a few items as testers (like foundation and primers) other items like eye shadow are pretty much anybody's game.
Overall, I do love my Ulta. Where else can you get drugstore and department in the same location? I'm not sure, but I'll continue to shop there...just using more caution than should be necessary.
Age: 44-55 Skin: Combination Hair: Brunette Eyes: Green
A new Ulta sprouted up near our community and though I had heard of them I had never been in one of their stores, I had to check it out immediately! The store is huge, clean and organized, the SA are very nice and don't hover. I like that Ulta also carries the cheaper brands, being the bargain hunter I am, sometimes I just don't want to pay $20.00 for a mascara! I do feel the staff at Sephora is more in the know when it comes to the lines they carry though. I don't like that they don't do perfume samples, I love that Sephora gives out perfume samples, but some of the Sephoras do not carry some of the scents I want to try out and Ulta does (I decide on perfumes over a 2-3 day span). All in all, I do like the store but I like Sephora best.
Age: 25-29 Skin: Combination, Olive Hair: Brunette Eyes: Hazel
I went to the Ulta in Las Vegas when I was going through town a couple of weeks ago. It was a nice clean store, and they really tried to be helpful.
I thought they were lovely people but they really didn't seem to know much about any of the smaller brands they carry, and they also don't have a lot of stock in - the shelves are full on the big names and practically empty on any smaller brands. Since I like to try to support newcomers to the market, and I rely on the store people to help me with what's good and what they love, I was disappointed.
That said, the customer service was excellent - not their fault they have not been properly trained on the products, for sure! I wonder who is in charge of that?
Age: 25-29 Skin: Oily, Fair, Cool Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Green
I generally end up going to Ulta looking for their promos - BOGO 50%, get this when you buy X dollars from this brand, etc - but never end up actually buying anything because the promo doesn't cover a specific thing that I wanted, such as the Revlon Lip Butters or the Maybelline Colour Tattoos. I've had two memorable customer service situations there, one good, and one bad:
I went in to look for the Summer Limited Edition Colour Tattoos in lavender and seashore and the display was empty of them, so I asked the guy at the counter. He immediately went to see if there were any left and found a single lavender one in a storage drawer! It was a bit of a dig so I believe that one of the employees was trying to save it for themselves, but it was mine now.
On another day I went in to check out the new UD eyeliner colours and wandered toward where the store keeps box sets that have been either bashed in too much to put on full price or that have hung around too long. It's also near a bunch of skin care products. A seller for one of the skin care products pounced on me like a spider on a fly caught in the web and I was stuck there for 10 minutes trying to be polite as she tested some of her line on me! It was very creepy because she kept stroking my hand and arm and made me really uncomfortable. I almost decided right then never to go into Ulta again!
Given the choice I would much rather go into Sephora because they don't mind talking about their products, giving samples, or testing ANYTHING on you when you ask. (But not when you don't.) I wish my Sephora wasn't 45 minutes away!
Age: 44-55 Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Warm Hair: Brunette, Straight, Fine Eyes: Other
If Ulta weren't the only place around that carried LORAC and Mario Badescu, I would never go in this store.
It's bright and clean and nicely organized but most of the stuff is a pile of junk. And don't get me started on SAs who don't understand the meaning of the word "sensitive skin." Maybe I'm being sensitive but when I say I have rosacea, any SA working in a skincare store should know that they shouldn't push glycolic acid products on me.
The prospect of salon hair car products was intriguing until I discovered that they don't sell the two brands I use -- L'Oreal Professionel and Kerastase.
Age: 44-55 Skin: Other Hair: Other Eyes: Other
I was so excited when I heard Ulta was opening 5 minutes from my house. However....that didn't last long! Ulta never has anything I need since they are always "waiting for a delivery". The coupons are ridiculous since they are not for any of the desired brands but can be used only on drugstore things. They use them to entice you to come into the store. Their brands are low end and drugstore brands. I will not go back since the salespeople are rude and not versed on any of the products that they have. I totally prefer Sephora's! As far as samples go, I also was told they don't have any only to see them put some in the bag of the person after me. I have never used their salon services since I always hear the "salon staff" talking about other customers and I don't need them talking about me! Ulta needs to train their help both in the products and the way they treat people. I was going to apply for a job there and SO GLAD I didn't. Sephora is much more professional, will always give samples and, for the most part, have what I need. In my opinion...ULTA sucks!
Age: 25-29 Skin: Other, Fair, Neutral Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Fine Eyes: Brown
I can definitely understand where some of the negative reviews are coming from. Yes, sometimes the displays can get totally messed up/disorganized and oftentimes there are products that have already been tampered with. This can be frustrating. Yes, some of the Sales Associates have absolutely no idea what they are talking about and are probably going to be clueless about the product you are looking for. You might even end up educating them on something. I know I have.
But I look past these factors because I personally think Ulta has a great selection, good prices, good promotions (there is always some kind of coupon floating around), and they have the best return policy. I can shop with confidence at Ulta, knowing that I can try out a product and take it back if I am not pleased. The Sales Associates have always been pleasant with me and are never bothersome if I tell them I am just browsing. It really is one of my favorite places to shop and it's almost embarrassing how often I am there.
Age: 30-35 Skin: Normal, Fair Hair: Red Eyes: Brown
I used to be an avid fan of Ulta. Until one day I stopped by the York PA location...
I was looking for Ojon oil. A SA at another Ulta had recommended it for her 100% beautiful Hispanic/Puerto Rican ringlets. So I decided to head to York and ask the manager where to find. She was small talking and I told her about the SA who had GREAT results. This manager wrinkled her semi middle aged face as if I said something so beneath her and that she was disgusted.
Maybe she dislikes or knows the SA but I think something more sinister was the root cause.
I do not want the manager of a store I spend over 2 grand at a year to be a nasty racist. Or smug.
I am white but I have noticed Ulta does NOT cater to other ethnicities. I will not support this behavior. Sephora was the FIRST to carry ethnic products before some of them are now "mainstream".
Ulta's overall attitude is turning into a Wal-Mart of beauty. Trashy. I cut back ALOT simply because this encounter stuck with me so much I refuse to shop at Ulta.
Age: 56 & Over Skin: Dry, Fair, Cool Hair: Blond, Straight, Fine Eyes: Blue
Oh-reading the reviews by MUA'ers are so funny, I just had to add my own! I thought it was just my own Ulta that was bad. When it first opened, the service was good (of course), the ladies were helpful, not too pushy, and samples were offered to customers. They even had SA's that knew the product lines. That was years ago it seems. How times have changed.
It seems we all have horror stories and I'll tell you my own. I wanted a haircut one day. I went in around dinnertime and was told they "don't take walk-ins". Ok. This was about 6 p.m. mind you, early enough in the day, since they don't close till 9 p.m., so the SA suggested I make an appointment. No one was sitting in a chair, there wasn't anyone waiting, and no one else had their hair done while I was in the store. I said I'd check my calendar and call back. When I called back from home, I was told they don't take anyone after 7 p.m., even though they don't close until 9 p.m. "well, because we don't. We have other things we have to do in the salon." I asked what about people that work during the day? They said "those people would have to take time off to come in because we're that good and people do come in early anyway". Oh really? I never did get my hair done at an Ulta. I guess my hair wasn't good enough for their scissors.
Next story. It was my birthday and Benefit advertises a free brow wax for your birthday at Ulta. Just come in on your birthday. So I did. Guess what? No Benefit SA available. So another SA tells me to come back another day and tell them that the Benefit girl wasn't there that day. So a few days later I come back again (I live 20 miles away, mind you), and again, the Benefit SA went home early (at 7 p.m.). So I inquire, so when exactly is this brow thing available for the working class? Am I supposed to run here right after work? The girl says "Well, IDK, she's never here at night." By the time I was able to reach the Benefit SA, I was told too much time had passed after my birthday and the offer wasn't available, but I could pay for one if I wanted. I never did get it done.
Next story. I was shopping foundations. No testers. I'm looking at PTR's foundations and would like to match a color. I'm standing there looking for a SA. Finally, one comes around and I ask if I can get a match. She walks away and comes back with fragrance paper swatch. She sticks it in one bottle and then hands it to me and walks away. There's my match. Like it or leave it, I guess. On a piece of paper, no less. Here's your color. I felt like it had been torn out of a magazine.
I had made a purchase of close to 200 dollars and asked for some samples to be put in the bag. The cashier told me they didn't have any. After I just dumped 200 bucks and they don't have one sample? The manager overheard the cashier and runs over and tells her she's wrong, they most certainly do. She tells me to wait, she will make a special sample package for me after the cashier just treated me so rudely. And she goes into the drawers behind the register where there are piles of samples. Obviously samples that they don't give out to the customers.
In all the time I've been shopping there, there has only been one nice SA who knew the products, gave out samples (knowing customers that tried and liked would come back and purchase), and was genuinely friendly. Lately, anyone that works there is rushed and isn't interested in helping anyone out. Perhaps Ulta needs to re-think their sales model.
Last story: I was looking around the store (always on my own, they no longer have any help) when I finally found an SA to inquire about a product in a particular line. I asked questions about a moisturizer in Philosophy. She really didn't have any answers for me, was hemming and hawing and looking every way but at me. Finally, she said, "Well, you could buy it and that would tell you your answers." Yep, it would. I could also drive across the street to Sephora where they could tell me about the product, sample it on me, give me a sample to go home with it if I so desired, too.
Ulta still sends me coupons sometimes and if I'm so inclined I'll go there just to find something cheap enough that I might need to use that coupon on. Otherwise, I won't go out of my way to step foot in that store anymore. It's just not a friendly feeling anymore. And it's becoming more of a Bargain Basement atmosphere, too.
Age: 56 & Over Skin: Dry, Fair-Medium Hair: Blond Eyes: Brown
Waited for ages to get one in my part of the world after listening to so many talk about it on You Tube. Now I have easier access to it than to Sephora and at first I found myself going there often - using their coupons and gathering up "points" to use for other purchases. I do like the fact that they have these consumer perks and I also like the variety of products & prices of products they carry.
However, I have found over time that I am going back to Sephora more - for several reasons. First, I admit to loving some of the high end make up brands that Sephora sells (Laura Mercier, Dior & Nars) and I like how one can experiment with the products and easily get samples. Secondly, I find the Sephora SA's more informed, generally which is helpful. Finally, I get frustrated at the "prestige" vs other brands way in which the coupons apply. All that said, I still frequent Ulta regularly and find that they carry some brands (Nyx) that no one else does.
Bottom line is that it's not all that I thought it to be but I just love make up and so I enjoy the store!
Age: 44-55 Skin: Combination, Medium Hair: Brunette Eyes: Brown
I ordered from Ulta for years but in this day and age when companies are vying for your patronage I simply cannot imagine any place offering customer service as bad as Ulta so I will not continue to order from them. Actually, it's not just bad...it's nonexistent. You can find the products they offer here at the same price or less at many other sites on the net so there's no reason to put up with bad customer service. Even their points program is a joke compared to what you can get from other companies. Do yourself a favor, buy elsewhere. WORST CUSTOMER SERVICE ON THE NET.
Age: 30-35 Skin: Combination, Fair, Warm Hair: Blond, Straight, Fine Eyes: Blue
I love my nearest Ulta -- never had any bad experiences with SAs or the overall store. The SAs never badger me or try to sell a product (which is almost always the case with Sephora); because of this reason alone I will continue shopping there. I absolutely DETEST when a sales associate won't leave me alone. I'm usually the type that knows what I want when I go in there or I just want to browse to check out all the new products or plan future purchases. If I need help I'll ask for it! Anyway, my particular store is always clean and well-organized. Prices could be better (high-end stuff is on par with Sephora, but drugstore tends to be slightly higher than, say, Walmart or CVS. However, they always have some sort of BOGO or deal, so that works out if you wanna stock up your favorites from a particular brand. I also love that they carry brands like NYX, which aren't readily available. All in all, a wonderful store -- truly a girl's playground!
Age: 56 & Over Skin: Combination, Medium Hair: Blond Eyes: Hazel
The nearest Ulta from me is 20 minutes away. I go there maybe twice a year JUST to LOOK around. The store is clean except the clearance aisle which I don't touch, god knows how many people touch or tested them, ick. Where do they hire these people from??? The first time I went, I was looking for OPI Nail Envy. Not the nail strengthener or the top coat. The first SA I asked was clueless on where the OPI line is. She and I walked all over the store trying to find it. Then she took a personal phone call from her boyfriend and left me standing in the middle of the Essie line. Well, I have to say, I found it on my own by turning around and seeing the whole line of OPI nail polishes. There was the Nail Envy! But it was priced higher than I liked, and I can find it cheaper somewhere else. There was another SA who was drifting around doing nothing and there was a nametag on her chest "Smashbox", who proceeded to lead me to her line to "make me over", and I politely refused to her. She kept insisting. I kept saying no. Back and forth. Geez, leave me alone! She walked away in a huff. I went back to the front of the store to test out the fragrances and there were no testers! I asked another SA who was also doing nothing if she could open a bottle so I can test it. She said "No, we don't do that here" Huh? How am I supposed to buy anything there if I can't test it? The nearest Sephora to me is the one in JCPenney, in which they have limited stock and not all the new fragrances.. The free-standing retail Sephora is 2 hours away. Ulta was nearer, but if they continued to act like this to customers, they are doing a really good job of it! Sorry, Ulta, I will LOOK around but I will be buying online from Sephora. And I don't know how they can get away with the high prices on the drugstore line! And there's a Target next door to them!
Age: 19-24 Skin: Combination, Fair-Medium Hair: Blond Eyes: Blue
I love Ulta. The stores I go to are always clean and organized. I don't ask for help when I shop but whenever I check out the girls are always cheerful and friendly. It is true that the drugstore brands (Revlon, Loreal, ect) are waaaay overpriced, sometimes costing $2-$5 more than anywhere else. However, they also have brands that are a bit difficult to find (NYX, China Glaze) and often have buy one get one, or some other sales promotion going on. I have gotten some great deals here as a result of sales combined with a coupon. I can shop without getting hounded by employees and I've never had any trouble finding anything. One other downside is their coupons are a bit confusing, and sometimes exclude things you'd think would be included in the promotion.
Age: 36-43 Skin: Sensitive, Fair, Cool Hair: Red, Curly, Coarse Eyes: Hazel
There are two Ultas where I live; one gets a five-star and one gets ONE star. Guess which one is closest to my house? Yes, the one that is the most hideous. I go out of my way (and almost 20 miles) to go to the GOOD Ulta store. It's staffed by very young but very NICE gals who let me shop, don't ride my a$$, and are nothing but great every time I go in.
I have had an ongoing issue with the manager of the closer store. She is short, and has thin hair plastered to her skull in blonde, black, and pink tones. I only give this description in case she frequents the MUA boards and might perhaps recognize herself here. I can only pray.
Whenever I go into the "bad Ulta", this manager treats me like a shoplifter with a communicable disease. My first experience with her, I had to return an online order and she treated it as a return with no receipt and tried to force me to take store credit; um, no thanks. Open your eyes and read the papers in front of you! Halfway through our transaction she took a personal phone call and left another employee to 'finish it up'. That poor girl messed the entire transaction up and I had to wait for Hello Kitty Hair to drop her personal phone call. Several times I have been fruitlessly searching for something, and had to find someone to help---and there was HKH, putting on makeup directly from the high-end makeup testers! Dipping the brushes back into the testers, putting on her face, back in the testers: I was so grossed out. She did not even wash the brushes when she put them back on the end of the counter! She looked up to see me watching her and got a really snotty, snobby tone in her voice when she asked me if I was finding everything (as she kind of looked me up and down as she always does).
I once went in to see if I could find some curl styling cream, praying that she not be the one to accost---er, help--me. Sure enough she ignored me while I cruised the cheap side of the store (Cover Girl, Revlon) but as soon as I hit the Pureology section, she was on me like flies on poop. As she walked toward me hurriedly to ask me if I needed help (eyeing my hands and purse as she did so) I told her what I was searching for, knowing she would be clueless since her hair is so thin and straight. Mine is thick and curly and dry and looked a mess that day due to some crazy wind, I hoped that the state of it would show someone what I needed. Miss Kitty started leading me all over the hair care area, showing me stuff that would work on HER hair. I told her several times, I need some curly hair styling cream--she wasn't listening. So I found the Deva Curl area and she cooed, "Oh they have great shampoo!" But I'm looking for a styling cream. "Oh they have great hair gel!" But---I need a styling cream. As I found the bottle of cream MYSELF, she chirped, "Oh that's great styling cream!" YOU THINK??? Then---she said--"I have thick curly hair myself, that's great stuff!" I told her, I will get this and hope that it works. She said--brace yourself---"Well it can't look any worse!"
Really? I can see your SCALP, your hair is so thin and fine!! Maybe she is trying to 'relate' but I almost fell over when she said this to me. It took all I had not to react.
She also offered to carry the cream to the front for me--when has anyone at Ulta tried to 'babysit' what you picked up so that you don't shoplift it? This isn't the jewelry counter at Wal-mart! I'm probably old enough to be this twit's mother and she acts like I'm some kind of felon. (I have redeemed SEVERAL 1000 point rewards, obviously spending quite a bit of money in there)
Maybe all the times I've filled out surveys and specifically mentioned this woman's behavior, she's figured out that I tattle on her and she's annoyed? She never has a name badge on so I don't know what her name is, and I truly don't want to ask her because her entire demeanor is such that it seems like her lip is curling as she talks to me. I am not a confrontational person but I finally hit my saturation point with her and started talking to her like Mrs. Thurston Howell III when she approaches me. (Then I find someone else to help me if I need it) If she seems to be hovering while I browse, I no longer pay any attention to her. If she's watching me, she's not talking on the phone or putting on makeup from the testers and contaminating them.
Age: 25-29 Skin: Combination Hair: Brown Eyes: Hazel
This review is for the Ulta.com website. Truly one of the worst websites I've ever ordered from. Twice, they have screwed up my order and they were just languishing somewhere in Illinois. I talked to customer service several times and they assured me that I would receive them the next day. Well, I didn't so I filed a dispute with PayPal and I finally got my money back. I placed a couple more orders there and everything seemed ok. I placed an order on January 4th and have still not received it. I got the UPS tracking number and it said it would be here on Friday, January, 11th. Friday came and passed and nothing. I checked the UPS website again and it said that it had been transferred to my local post office for delivery. It is now Thursday, January 17th and nothing. Why the heck couldn't UPS just deliver it directly??? I checked the USPS tracking and it said it hasn't been updated since last Friday. So my package is lost somewhere in the Houston postal system. I really don't know why Ulta sets up their shipping this way. It is very very frustrating.
Age: 36-43 Skin: Combination, Fair Hair: Brunette Eyes: Brown
Love the stores, hate the website.
The Love for the Stores:
You can test out products before buying. The range is comparable to Sephora plus has drugstore brands which is a big plus. Rewards system is neat: I've redeemed enough to get three $100 shopping trips on their tab. They do offer frequent coupons, though be warned that many of the coupons will not work on the "prestige" brands, i.e., the really good stuff. At least Sephora offers specials on most of their products.
The best thing is the returns policy: they will accept opened cosmetics for refund/exchange, so I can shop without fear of being stuck with the wrong color/shade/product.
The Hate for the Website:
It takes FOREVER to get an order from the Ulta website delivered. I don't understand it: other online companies I've ordered from also use UPS for their standard shipping, and their deliveries get here fairly promptly. It's now going on almost two weeks, and I still don't see my order. It's as though Ulta sends stuff by the slowest possible shipping category.
Age: 18 & Under Skin: Normal, Fair-Medium Hair: Brown, Curly, Coarse Eyes: Brown
I love ulta ! They have a wide variety of products and brands . My ulta has everything seperated into sections making it easy to find what your looking for. The SA are very nice and helpful! They ask if you need help but they also give you space. They always accept my coupons, answer any questions i have , and inform me of any deals. Ultas a great store. I guess it just depends on the people who work there that decide whether your trip will be a happy one .
Age: 56 & Over Skin: Dry, Fair-Medium Hair: Brown Eyes: Hazel
ULTA is brand new in our city and the SAs are awful! I returned a product after 60 days and was purchasing new products and one SA said they cannot take it back after 60 days. I said I was applying it to newly purchased products and she said they could not do it. I returned to my car and read the back of the sales slip and it said after 60 days you could only get store credit, so I had to go back in and show the SA her own receipt so she could re-run my purchase to credit me with my return - she was not happy. Also, poor job on matching BE products to my skin. She looked at me and said "You're a medium" and that's the only color she applied all over my face. In the store it looked okay, but in the car I looked like a pumpkin! Every time I go in there with a coupon, they find a reason for me not to be able to use it on what I have in my shopping bag. And, they are ALL clueless about where to find certain products. Once they told me they were all out of something and I found it at the checkout counter on the travel size display! Another time I picked up Revlon lipstick - buy 2 get 1 free - and the SA argued with me at the register that it was buy 2 get one 50% off, until she ran it up and it said buy 2 get 1 free and she just blew it off saying "Oh I must be thinking of another brand." I'll take Sephora and BB&B any day!
Age: 18 & Under Skin: Acne-prone, Fair, Cool Hair: Brunette, Wavy, Medium Eyes: Brown
I like Ulta...I do. And I still go there, and will continue to go there mainly because of the wide selection of brands they carry and their cheap Stila travel palettes with the adorable designs on them. They carry Esscence, whose lipglosses I'm obsessed with, and NYX, whose Soft Matte Lip Creams and other lip products I adore. They also have a wide range of other brands that I like all in one place, and their mix of drugstore and high end cosmetics make it easy to get everything I want in one place. Now, this is about where the good things end. Ulta is insanely expensive! I know it may not look like it, but they are. Compared to Target, their Revlon Super Lustorous lipsticks are two dollars more. That might not seem like a lot, but those lipsticks are some of my favorites. I have around five of them, so I'd be paying ten dollars more for all of them at Ulta than at Target, and with that ten dollars, I could buy two more of those lipsticks at target. Before I shop at Uta, I check prices on the products I'll be buying so I won't get ripped off. Like others have said, they're very vague on their free gifts with pruchase. I've ordered online from Sephora before, and they've given me free samples I didn't know I'd be recieving, along with the promised free gifts. Also, at Sephora, the sales assistants are always very helpful and happy. They rarely look like they don't want to be there. At Ulta the other day, I was looking for my Exuviance concealer (I was in a new city and the Ulta was set up completely differently), and asked a SA for help. After aimlessly following her around, she called the manager and asked, who only told her what I had told her, that it was with Exuviance. After that, I told her it was around 22 dollars. She led me over to a different section and finally found it. All the while, she managed to look unenthused and annoyed. Not a very welcoming feeling.
I think Ulta needs to work on their welcoming atmosphere. My Ulta back home has a lot nicer employees, but after seeing other Ultas, I think I just got lucky. Most of their employees have no idea what's going on around them. I really can't understand their sour attitudes. Lastly, like many others have said, the store is very unsanitary. Especially the NYX section. That area is full of smeared lipsticks and broken shadows, andmost things are without caps or seals. I love NYX, so that's a big issue for me. Things around the store are very unorganized. I prefer Target for my drugstore makeup shopping nowadays. It's all very clean and less cramped. I will continue to shop at Ulta for NYX and Esscence and their mix of brands, and I do enjoy shopping there. They just have so many issues they need to have fixed. If there was a Sephora closer to where I live, I don't think I'd be going to Ulta quite as frequently.