March 29, 2010

Yay or Nay: Sephora Stores

I love Sephora. Don’t you?

When I was younger visiting Toys R’ Us was like heaven. All those toys, aisles and aisles of them! When I grew up bookstores and electronic stores and..ahem…office supply stores (yes, I have a thing for office supplies, sue me) held the same exciting appeal as Toys R’ Us did and actually still do. I actually have a Kindle 2 and a Sony Reader plus I have an Ipad on the way but I can honestly say there is nothing in the world like a stroll and a browse through Barnes and Noble. I love the quiet, peaceful aisles, the smell of new books combined with a hint of some flavored coffee drink from the cafe. In my minds eye, this must be what heaven is like if it exists.


And…Sephora…oh Sephora. It’s a candy store for adult women isn’t it? And men in some cases. All that color, all those brands, all that product, housed under a single roof to tempt, entice, tease, and delight us. There isn’t anything else like it. You can’t get this experience from counters in my opinion, only Sephora.

How about you?

Sephora Stores, Yay or Nay?

It’s a yay for me. Although I like shopping online more than I do in store in most cases (SA’s are a little too pushy sometimes at the store and I don’t like feeling watched while I shop) I still give Sephora a solid YAY!

Any nay say’ers out there? If not Sephora, what store or counter gets a yay from you?

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About the Muse

Isabella MuseIsabella is just an average everyday geeky girl who doesn’t blend her eyeshadow correctly, wears too much blush, and hopes she never finds her holy grail products because she likes the thrill of the chase so much. Her mission is to bring you super honest reviews on makeup, skincare, fragrance and all things beauty. She’s in no way an expert on the topic and she sure as hell isn’t a super model. But she’s passionate about makeup and is seeking like-minded individuals that like pina coladas, getting caught in the rain, and ones that enjoy spending hundreds of dollars at Sephora without feeling buyer’s remorse. If you’re that person feel free to reach out and leave a comment or follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Bloglovin‘.

Leave a Comment


  • Heidi Walker

    Being biased ( Yep I am an AVON lady) I would say the AVON & MARK books get me going.

    I can look and dream in bed all cuddled up and they have a 100% guarantee so I can try makeup and get a refund if it is not for me. All coming to and from my front door. Guess I am lazy but I love delivery.

    Last I never have to worry if something is sanitary.

  • Kristina

    I could spend hours in Sephora sniffing, testing, and playing with makeup. It’s quite sad isn’t it? I suppose it’s fortunate that I have small children with me all day and therefor don’t have the time!
    I like office supply stores too. All the organizer bin type things really inspire my inner neat freak. Of course, my small children thwart that too.

    • the Muse

      LOL kristina I hear ya, the container store is my BFF 😀 god yes, I spend way too much time at sephora, rather sad LOLL

  • Selenite

    Definite yay. I like that they have stuff for a wide range of needs to vegan friendly(Urban Decay) mature(Laura Mercier) to teen friendly(Too Faced, used to have Eyeko).

  • mayrei

    I think I have to give them a Yay, because even though the SA’s can be very annoying and often very unhelpful, they’re not nearly as bad as the banshees that I’ve been accosted by at dept. store counters.

  • mercedes

    oh my gosh i totally agree on theres nothing like walking down the the aisles of b&n, its so soothing and relaxing,the quietness is amazing! i havent been in a sephora yet (the people who work there terrify me) we only got sephora’s in our 2 malls here in albuquerque just last year (i know what your thinking only 2 malls?! well all the other crap we have here makes up for it) plus i hate when people are constanly on your case about ‘do you need help’ every two seconds,so i tend to chicken out of walking in there.haha

    • the Muse

      lord yes Mercedes 😀 B&N or any bookstore does it for me 😀 I hate that too I can totally relate 🙁

      no likey!

  • Jinnzor

    I really like Sephora. I go there every time I’m in the US. Your prices are way more reasonable as well!

    • the Muse

      oh lord yes jinnzor! we are way cheaper 😀 extra suitcase for you eh :)D

  • Jane

    I agree with you about Barnes and Noble and sitting there with a warm drink, and the sephora stores I love going shopping in sephora but I do agree with you about the SA they always seem to be watching you. Plus i enjoy the fact I can shop in comfort.

    • the Muse

      hey jane that’s the best thing in the world 😀 one B&N I go to that’s located upstate has a fire place!!!!!!!! now that’s comfy 😀 sadly yes, 🙁 I love sephora but the SA’s are overwhelming!

  • Hithlain

    Lol, I’m a ulta girl myself because they don’t have any sephoras where I am from. However, I can sympathize with those people who said that they liked shopping online. I hate going over to the urban decay section and looking at some eyeshadows and suddenly there is a women at my elbow telling me about their newest sale and creeping me out. I just want to look gosh darn it!

    Both Ulta and Sephora have cheaper “drugstore” makeup lines than Walgreens does so I always end up buying all my makeup from them 😉

    • LorraineER

      Have you been to a Sephora before someplace else? I’m just curious how Ulta & Sephora compare because we are traveling to the state capital soon and while we have Sephora at the closest mall, their mall has an Ulta and I’m going out of my way to check it out. If it’s basically identical then I’d skip it, but I’m hoping they will offer a few different brands and I’m wondering about Ulta-brand as well.

      • the Muse

        hi lorraine very different experience as sephora carries all high end and ulta carries both high and drugstore ends. def check out Ulta as it’s a different experience entirely imho!

  • Johanna

    A definite Yay to Sephora! Those Beauty Insider gifts really have me hooked.

  • Samantha

    I LOVE sephora!! Also, how’s the ipad? I’m considering getting one!

    • the Muse

      hey Samantha 😀 me too! mmm it’s good, I had the chance to test it out a few months ago. I like it alot but I actually love my kindle even more 😀 nothing beats the simplicity of downloading a book and just reading minis the bells and whistles of an ipad!

  • Angela

    Yay, of course! I feel like it’s some kind of magical happy fun land of colours.
    I would buy online if there is a severe discount from retail or if I can’t find it in store, but I am always more than willing to brave pushy salespeople to check out the texture and colour firsthand.

    • the Muse

      angela 😀 me too, I hate it to be honest (pushy sa’s) but I still brave it just so I can test, swatch, and play 😀 it’s relaxin’!

  • Reyna

    I love sephora, just don’t like that they don’t change there testers often and I’m sometimes afraid to try out products. They can really look scary sometimes 🙁 at least at my sephora.

  • Angela

    I give Sephora a big YAY! We only got them last year here in Vancouver, and even though the SAs can be annoying, it’s still easier to deal with then cosmetic counter gals. I love being able to play with products without being pestered too much, or pressured to buy. I still love MAC, they’ve been here longer then Sephora, and I often spend more money and MAC and am happier with my purchases. Sephora SAs aren’t always so great at colour matching, especially when they’re just looking for a sale. My only gripe is the number of products not available in Canadian Sephora stores, even when they’re not Canada restricted. What gives?

  • Lori

    I love sephora stores!!! You could find professional help and advice if you want, or you could just explore for fun without a scary sales person breathing down your neck. I tend to avoid department store makeup counters unless i’m absolutely dying for a certain product and it’s not offered at sephora


    sephora is such a yay!!!

    I remember the first time I went in their ahha I hated it like I vowed never to go back in their but under 2 months I was back 🙂 now the sales asstiance now my twin and I by name so They are never pushy or anything.

  • donna

    I could spend all day in Sephora. I am a total junkie but the SA’s are terrible. 🙁

  • Hillarie

    I love Sephora. I can’t say enough good things about that place 😀

    There are only 3 things I dislike about Sephora: sometimes the SA’s do get offended if I don’t want something they’re trying to sell me (not usually, but it’s happened), I have to drive 40 miles just to get there, and the only full-sized Sephora in my area *gasp* doesn’t have Urban Decay. All the mini JC Penney ones in my area have Urban Decay, but it’s not the same (they are also 40 miles away… grr)

    But everything else about Sephora is great. I always end up spending an hour in there just because everything is so inviting.

  • Marina

    LOVE Sephora. Any makeup store really. I was on a drive today into a part of the state I’ve never been to and saw an Ulta and flipped. I had no idea we had one here! I get all giddy every time I go into Sephora, though I feel like they’re watching me as I swatch colors…I feel a little awkward. But it’s still overwhelming and fun to see all the colors.
    But…shopping online is the best. Just the wait for the products to arrive…it’s pretty fun. It’s pretty backwards. You can’t WAIT for the stuff to get to your door, but at the same time you enjoy the anticipation =)

  • thedogismine

    YAY! Too bad I have to drive east to the next county to go to one. So I’m glad my local JCPenney is remodeling to accommodate a new, local, 5 minutes away Sephora.

  • Kelsey

    OH, B&N!!! I love how serene it feels in there, or ANY bookstore. Even just the smell of it.. MMM.. lol. That and office supply stores. I have a big thing for pens and clean paper.

    I’ll give Sephora a Yay, even though I very rarely shop for makeup in an actual store. If I could actually see well in them, I would be there more often. It’s just that it’s too bright for my very sensitive eyes. :\

  • Lauren

    Book stores are my toy stores! Unfortunately we don’t have Sephora in the Philippines and the last time I was in the US, I didn’t care about makeup and took Sephora for granted.

  • Janet

    I’ve only been in a Sephora once but I loved it! All the testers~
    But compared to SAs here in Korea, SAs in America are wayyy laidback. In Korea, they STALK you around the store. I hate that ><

    • the Muse

      lol janet never been to korea but it’s the same in Japan 😀 but they are really cute when they do it at least it was a novelty for me :-D!!!!!!! I didn’t mind a buncha of sweet Japanese SA’s following me around 😀

  • Tohnia

    I love the smell/feeling of a bookstore. We don’t have Barnes & Noble in Canada, but Chapters (our version of B&N) is a good dupe. Its nice to get a cup of Starbucks and just read in quiet. I love Sephora also. Its so much fun to just wander around and test stuff. Some of the SA’s at Sephora scare me. And I WORK at a Toys R Us! ironically. :b Babies R Us FTW!

    • the Muse

      god yes tohnia that’s my fav 😀 cuddled up with a warm drink and a book at the store! LOL DAMNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNNN toys r’ us around the holidays=AHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

  • Samara

    YAY to everything you mentioned but I can’t forget TjMaxx and their wonderful deals!

    I’m a little addicted to shopping and if it is a great deal I feel like I hit the lottery hehehe.

  • Helen

    Well a few times I purchased a lotion or cream from Sephora store and took it home and it just smelled horrible. Few months later I heard reviews about the product again and decided to give it another go. I ordered online that time from Sephora and it didnt have the bad smell like the first time. I think its all the lighting in the displays. It most likely builds up heat and causes the lotion or whatever product to go bad if it hasnt been rotated out enough. The lotion I got was all natural no fragrance, for sensitive skin stuff so I think perhaps no preservatives? I love Sephora to go browse, match color, and play with the make up but when it comes to acually buying the product I just order it online.

  • Robyn

    LOVE sephora i have been there twice when i was in paris

    before i was under the impression sephora was kinda like boots here in the uk with drugstore brands, haircare etc aswell etc then i went in and was OMG my mother had to give me a shove before i could move again it was HEAVEN

    and at the entrance of the one i was in they had these giant bottles of perfume which were like over 1000 euros it was insanely awesome

  • jonnie

    I love love love Sephora! Maybe I don’t mind the salespeople because I don’t have a Sephora close enough to me to g in there a lot. I like talking with them sometimes actually. Probably because I don’t know anyone who likes to talk about makeup. Last time I went to one I asked when they’d have tokidoki and they were all excited I knew about it, and it’s also nice when they compliment my skin. 😀 maybe I’m just a lonely person… I spend a lot of time alone.

    As much as I adore Sephora though, I must say bookstores get the win for me. Especially when they have coffee shops attached! Coffee and books are things I love even more than makeup, if you can believe it! 🙂

    • the Muse

      Aww jonnie your Sephora SOUNDS nice 😀 alot of my sa’s are downright rude!

      I love books WAY more than I love makeup 😀 I’m with ya!

  • PinkyKathy

    YEAH!!!!!!!! love sephora b/c I can play around with all gorgeous makeup but i don’t purchase much just b/c I love Asian makeup more. ^____^

  • Lilo

    I agree 100% YAYfor both BN and Sephora. LOVE LOVE LOVE both stores. I like walking through the stores, the SA’s here in Miami actually leave you pretty much to yourself unless you ask for help. But there’s nothing more exciting than when you get your order in the mail. It’s like Christmas!!

    • the Muse

      oh hells yes lilo like christmas indeed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Eileen Prescia

    I like Sephora but sometimes it’s frustrating to find what you are looking for. If I read about something online and I go to buy it, the item is usually sold out. Don’t stress about pushy sales people, once you turn 50, they just waltz right past you. I guess they see me at the Kat Von D or Urban Decay counter and think I am buying something for my daughter. Too funny!

    • the Muse

      aw eileen!!!!!!!! don’t say that!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 50 and fabulous right?! 😀

      I have this prob at my sephora normally it pops up online WAY before it’s in store which frustrates me!

  • Wendy

    I like Sephora, my only negatives with them are that the nearest one is 20-25 mins away (where I live, that’s far… I have 3 malls within 15 minutes of my house) and that their SAs are usually rude. Also, gross testers!
    Does any other store have that problem? My god, the ones at my store are just straight nasty. It’s beyond the fact that they sit out for so long… it’s almost like people get them wet and purposefully make holes in the cream products, etc.
    I think the final issue I had was when I bought a Clinique set for my mom for Christmas. I could have gotten a similar one from Macy’s (I work there) but I had a coupon so I went to Sephora… my mom opened the mascara and it was waaaaay bad. There was no suction pulling the mascara off from the wand so she just had a massive gob of mascara. I went to return it and it took me 30 mins just to return it (kept questioning me, etc)

    • the Muse

      aw wendy that’s way off 🙁 yup here too with sa’s and testers le sigh!

      Aw I’m sorry 🙁 normally Sephora is ok with returns in my area however gross testers for sure and rude sa’s 🙁 sigh! I’ve been known to purchase stuff and come out of it with used things though…so can related. I purchased two urban decay lipsticks once and one was smashed inside the tube, needless to say I was peeved, but they returned it quick and easy thankfully!

  • Vonvon

    I so wish that we have Sephora here in Malaysia, but looking on the bright side, we don’t, so that means quite a bit of money saved, and less pocket pain 😉

    Btw, I like stationery too!

    • the Muse

      like vonvon stationary=my down fall 😀

      and hells yes ALOT of $$ saved!

  • Amanda Koker

    I’m South African and live in Korea. I can’t lie. I do all my research about a product online first so I can go to a store and know what I want. I HATE SA STALKERS. I was an SA myself once in souh Africa and we were trained to keep an eye in our customers from a distance. Checking that they don’t steal, but stalking them was out of the question. Sale fail of the century.

    I do wish Korea would get a sephora. Mors make my life easier.