July 12, 2017

Here’s What the 2017 Sephora VIB Rouge Renewal Gift Looks Like

The 2017 Sephora VIB Rouge Renewal Gift popped up a few months ago on their website and it’s a Sephora Pro Mini Flawless Airbrush. Did I hear a possible sign of disappointed? If I’m honest I got more joy out of the Sephora 2016 VIB Rouge Renewal Gift and of course, from mini Bite Beauty VIB Rouge Creme Lipstick they give (or gave) in the VIB Rouge Welcome Kits.

So, I spent over $1000 at Sephora and I got a mini makeup brush? This reminds me of one of those bad t-shirts that reads, “My family went to Hawaii and all I got was this T-Shirt!”

I hit Rouge status a few months ago but only just recently did the 2017 Rouge Renewal Gift pop up online so during a recent order I popped it into my cart. Because hey, free is free right? It comes in a bright red draw string bag and is a little smaller than a MAC Holiday Mini Makeup Brush. It has a short bright red handle with very densely packed synthetic bristles. It’ll be good for foundation application but powders or blushes are a no good as the bristles are a little too tightly packed for such application. The bristles are soft and had no issues with shedding.

It’s a nice brush, I have no complaints but I use my fingers 99% of the time for foundation application which renders it useless for me.

I’m, of course, willing to rant about the fact I spend a stupid amount of money at Sephora every year and the the thing they’d thought I’d like as a renewal gift is a really small makeup brush?

I think they could do a bit better than this.

Did you get your renewal gift?

Were you happy with it?

Do share!

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‘.

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  • Eraser

    I’m VIB, not Rouge, but I sympathize – I think Sephora and, for that matter, Ulta have gotten really cheap with their membership benefits. I no longer even try to make it and if I do, it’s only coincidentally. Just as an example, Rite Aid gives me 20% off every day for being a gold level customer (I get prescriptions there so it adds up), so I never buy drugstore brands at Ulta any more. If they offered discounts like this instead of chintzy gifts, I’d be happier.

    • Michelle

      I have to disagree about the Ulta perk system. The new money system is terrific. The more points you save the higher your dollar value off is. PLUS if you use the Ulta credit card you get Ulta dollars on every purchase. Those points equal dollars of purchases and if you save them you can land yourself a nice chunk of money off a purchase. NEVER just cash in at the $3 off!!! Save those points!

      • Lisa C

        I totally agree Michelle! Ulta is awesome if you save those points! I wait until I have 2000 pts before I cash in. That equals $125 worth of free stuff! Sephora can’t even compare. If only Ulta carried more of the prestigous brands, I would never shop at Sephora again. They are a Joke!!!

  • Dominique

    I hit VIB Rouge two weeks ago and received the brush last week. i too was dissapointed. It’s cute but they should something way better or include a lipsticks or a bunch of deluxe samples with it and I would’ve been happy getting this instead of a mini brush. We get better thing with our points.

  • Niche

    Different people, different strokes (no pun intended).

    I actually rather get this brush than yet another Makeup Forever red lipstick or pencil. I love Nars but have no interest in the red blush from last year and didn’t even bother to get it. I’m at the point where I’m really picky when the gift is a colour cosmetic. Like the recent 100 pt liptsticks from amazing brands that are all hot pink…great idea but no thanks.

    • Michelle

      I completely agree. I never use the teeny tiny unflattering makeup products they have offered years past (accept for that red nail polish, that was very pretty) or the compact mirror they did the first year rouge came out. This brush I use every day as my go to concealer brush and love it. Now a little set with a few more brushes would have been nice!

      • JenCz

        I was disappointed at first, but I guess I have to agree as well. I’m tired of throwing out yet another black eyeliner or red lipstick I’ll never use or can’t even give away at this point.
        However I do have to say that Sephora has been dropping the ball in terms of their customer service, free samples, and 100- and 500-point bonuses since that 1000+ point giveaway fiasco a few years back. Although I’ll still keep shopping there because of the brand selection, I’m not impressed with them or their rewards program at all lately

  • yelena

    tsk tsk. it’s getting hard to keep shopping at sephora over other retailers with better rewards…ie. points for dollars at ulta.

    i haven’t gotten the VIB rouge gift, and I understand that they don’t have to, but even the 100pt and 500pt perks are a joke now. I have been buying everything at Ulta unless it’s exclusive to sephora. Sorry sephora, you were my first makeup store love but I think we want different things, it’s not you it’s me….ok wait maybe it is you…lol

    • Tara

      I am 100% with you, Yelena. I’ve had 1500 points at Sephora for a while now (there isn’t ever anything that I want to redeem them for). On occasion, when I have redeemed a 500 point reward, I’ve held it in my hand and thought “Is this really what my $500 spending got me?” (And good luck ever getting your hands on a perk higher than 500 pts)
      Ulta may not have all of the brands that Sephora has, but their point system is leaps and bounds better and they do 20% (including prestige brands) a few times a year…up against Sephora’s dreadful point “perk” program and two measly sales a year.
      I too only shop at Sephora if I have to. Now, if only Ulta would start offering free shipping for it’s Platinum members…

      P.S…I also subscribe to the Sephora Play box and you can definitely tell that the items are just leftover 100 point perks that they have laying around! Get it together, Sephora!

      • yelena

        yes! I was doing the sephora play and was quickly disappointed. I did ipsy and sephora boxes concurrently and for the same monthly price, I was getting better stuff through ipsy. granted there were a few indie brands thrown in, but the name brand things I got from ipsy were great products that usually led me to purchasing a full size. needless to say i cancelled sephora play box cuz it was just not worth it. ( i tried it for 3 months.) i cancelled ipsy after a year only because I have way too many products in general and had to go on a no buy.

    • kjh

      Yeah. Exactly. As a person who got free Mod Ren and abh Aurora, from Ulta, I no longer see the point in Sephora. If there’s a choice, I go Ulta every time. K skin? Ulta. S has overpriced high in etoh and fragrance ingredients stuff, like Son and Park Beauty Water. Really? Trendy, but not really a skin friendly choice. Gimme a low to midrange Cosrx any day. Checking Cosdna and EWG proves me right. I spent decades and gobs of $$$ on Sephora. Foolishly. Now, if there is a Nars powermatte set for xmas, I’m there. The point stuff is a joke. I have over 5K and never use them. S.t. I wonder if the big point items actually exist. As to this brush, ??? Usually use fingers. I think a small Sephora striped Z with maybe only 2 or 3of your Sephora brand choices….you’d have to fill the rest with purchases…would be nice. It could expand interest in their house brand, and you’d get what you wanted. But S doesn’t listen. And they don’t publish most non-favorable consumer reviews. U actually does.

  • Kelly

    I receive this brush as well and it is sitting in a drawer somewhere not being used… They couldn’t offer something better? I’m pretty disappointed overall with the Rouge gifts and “perks”. Nothing they offer is incentive enough to keep Rouge status. Especially when they do events in-store. Empty cosmetics bags you have to buy something to get, not enough exclusive access to presale access to gifts… I could go on and on but have started shopping at other stores (Nordstrom, Ulta) rather than wait for Sephora to improve the Rouge perks.

    • Isabella Muse

      I won’t admit the amount of points I have but it’s a lot and you know? Because there is absolutely nothing worth spending the points on LOL!

      • Tina

        Hi Muse,

        I have an embarrassing amount of points as well, and you are absolutely right…nothing worth spending more than occasional 100 point perk on. I also notice that the really big perks are sold out even before you have a chance to look at them. I love Sephora, but they should really find a way to treat their best customers better and more often.

    • Deb

      You really nailed it Kelly! I’ve been rouge for a few years but only because I was buying all of my skincare and fragrance from Sephora. I also bought my makeup from them too but I’ve started branching out to Nordstrom more often. I like Nordstrom notes and it’s nice getting an actual cash coupon to use with them. My biggest complaint with Sephora is their reward system. The only rewards that I’ll occasionally use are the 100 pt rewards. The crap they offer for the higher points are a joke. I and I really, really hate how they do samples with purchase. I literally can’t remember the last time I actually got the sample I chose. Substitutes every damn time. I don’t understand why they can’t track their inventory of samples more accurately so you can decide if you want a substitute for something that is out of stock. I’ll probably lose my rouge status this year and I can’t seem to care.

      • Natalie

        Girl…YASSSS! THIS. I was about to write them and email about this because only one out of the last like 15 orders I have placed has even contained 1 sample I actually requested. Pretty sure the people who pack stuff up just grab 3 and call it a day. I know they are free but I rather pass all together if they are just going to send me whatever they want. For example my husband is super sensitive to frangrancw to I RARELY ever get to wear perfume and yet 97%!of the samples I get are frangrance!!! I feel bad for wasting it and rather just have them keep it!

        • Deb

          Go for it Natalie! I did but never got a reply. Maybe they need to hear more of it. And your story kinda cracks me up because I usually order all fragrance samples and never get them! I get some card with three dots of foundation or lipstick in colors I could never wear.

      • Kelly

        Don’t get me started on the samples. I rarely get what I requested and they do t even try to give you something similar. I don’t need three of the same old perfume samples they’ve been giving out for years…!

  • Em

    It’s not very much for spending $1000. You think they could at least spring for a whole brush set?

    • Isabella Muse

      haha I wouldn’t ask for a whole brush set but a full size item of some sort would be nice? I’d settle for a tote bag that said sephora on it!

    • Thea

      Heck, I’d be happy if it was just a full-size brush. I find mini brushes annoying to try and use, and I can’t store it in my brush stand cause it’s too short.

  • Christina D.

    I’m just about at the renewal level and I gotta agree, can’t they come up with something better for us nut cases that have spent most of our disposal income at Sephora?

    Or maybe it’s a sign that we (me!) need to stop spending so much money on makeup. It’s different for you, Sis, since you are a beauty blogger. My SO thinks I’m running a cosmetic shop out of my closet.

    • Isabella Muse

      lol! It’s ok, I’m there with you! It’s our retirement! When we’re old and gray we can sell off out LE palettes 😀

  • Sarah

    I’m not even going to use that brush, what a silly reward. 🙁

    I feel like there is less and less incentive with keeping my VIB Rouge status. The free two-day shipping is nice, but…that’s not worth spending $1,000 a year.

    I may hit Rouge again this year, I may not. I just wish Sephora did MORE to make Rouge feel like it carries actual status instead of sending you a little brush and the same coupons VIBs get.

  • Heidi

    That’s seriously what you get? I haven’t spent as much as I have in past years so I’m not at past levels, but that’s kind of skimpy. What would be a really nice renewal gift would be a free Play box or something like that. I haven’t been wild about Sephora or Ulta’s rewards lately. It’s like they tried to draw me in and then got lazy.

  • Miranda Wood

    I have been VIB Rouge now for several years and yes I have been disappointed with Sephora for a very long time but where else can I walk into a store and get the one stop shopping experience that I do. I love Ulta but even they don’t carry many lines that Sephora does. I hate the 100point items that have Maybe 2-3 uses of product in them and I hate the reward system they have (I love Ulta’s) but what is a girl to do? They continue to sale millions of dollars a year ~ its a losing battle. LOL!!

  • blee

    ITA, I like my mini blush I got this year. Nars? I just put an order in 5 days ago and one of the eye shadows was in stock when I put it in and a “WEEKLY SPEICAL” I had added to my cart. but did not ship because the eye shadow went OOS and the WS did too but I still see it there. ? I also added my B-DAY gift and a 500 point one. I guess I over loaded the system. LOL 😀

  • Susan Phillips

    FYI…I just got an email from Sephora yesterday saying that points will expire in 18 months if not redeemed (or a purchase is not made). I have been saving mine forever for something fabulous .

    • Isabella Muse

      omg seriously? I’ve had like 25000000000000 stored up forever! that sucks!

      • MN Diamond Girl

        Just curious……Is there a certain item or brand that you would redeem your points for? Or a tour/trip?

        • Isabella Muse

          I’d love a unique gift sets and not something that was recycled or already available in the perm collection. Some sort of cool vault that’s uniquely available for Rouge members with a possible exclusive shade. As for a trip, I’d totally love something that didn’t involve get your makeup done by so and so. They had a Kat Von D meet and greet which sounded brilliant. I’d love to meet my favorite brand’s creator.

  • Maria

    That is pathetic Muse. The brush is made in China and is probably worth maybe 3 dollars. I am just a beauty insider. I prefer ulta over Sephora. At least they have sales and coupons.

  • Fran

    Since Ulta is getting some more popular brands (MAC, Nars, etc.) I’ve been tending to buy my make-up/skincare there, since the points turn into money off. I would rather get money off than get tiny rewards that are only half-way full! The only things I buy at Sephora are the brands that I can’t buy at Ulta (Fresh, Sheisedo, belif).

  • Sara

    I qualified for my gift a few weeks ago and was also kind of “meh” about it. The brush itself is fine, but the teeny handle makes it hard to grasp. With e-tailer competition, Sephora might have to do more to keep their high spending customers happy. Nordstrom is starting to offer more gifts with purchase. I’ve had good luck with gifts from Blue Mercury and Birchbox is always offering % off or nice gifts.

    • Isabella Muse

      Blue Mercury has some nice GWPs, I agree Sara lots of places are doing MUCH better!

  • Agona

    I liked this brush much better than I thought I would. My Real Techniques stippling brush I had been using was streaky in comparison–I actually tossed it recently in favor of this brush so I’m pretty happy.

  • Kimberly

    Let me put it this way I could have hit Platinum twice at Ulta this year already…and I just renewed my VIB at Sephora last month. That says something, I never use to go to Ulta or shop online, but honestly they have better coupons and while some of the perk samples aren’t as good overall it’s a better experience. You earn money based off points and can get triple points and sometimes x5 points (Hi Lipstick Queen) and then they have the spend like $75 get a bag of items, I got a travel size it’s a 10 and full size mascara once. So yes I do think Sephora could do better with their point rewards and Rouge renewal gift and overall rewards for Rouge members.

  • Kristin

    That’s almost…insulting. As long as Platinum keeps giving (for free) the same caliber of samples Sephora wants 100 points for, I’ll continue shopping at Ulta. (I might already be Platinum through 2018 anyway…)

  • Natalie

    The primary reason I stay away from Ulta unless it is a product I already know is the lack of free returns. To me it is has a real chilling effect on experimentation.

  • Karen

    AGREE! I’ve been VIB Rouge for awhile now but lately I don’t care to hit that status anymore. Yes the free 2-day shipping is nice but come on, $1000 spent a year. Anyone can join the free shipping perk for less. The samples are disappointing; maybe let Rouge input 2 of the promo codes instead of 1. Also in regards to early access, meh… I can live without it. I’m buying everything off Ulta & Nordstrom nowadays. Sephora is no longer my love.

  • Tracy

    Sigh. Color me not excited. I’ve been Rouge for a few years now and this year has been the longest it’s ever taken me to hit Rouge again (almost there, not yet). I don’t use this sort of brush so now I’m totally not psyched. Will I still hit Rouge before the end of the year, yes. But I’ve gotten to the point where if the product is available at Ulta I’ll buy it there instead because their rewards system is far superior to Sephora’s.

  • Emily

    Sephora, I hope you are reading these comments. We think you can do better. I actually like some of the 100-point perks this month (Fresh soy face cleanser, I love it but never want to buy it, but I keep getting those travel sizes and I really enjoy it) and some nice lipstick options (I got the Hourglass lip stylo in an unexciting but wearable color, which allowed me to try the formula without shelling out the big bucks). I do think it’s obnoxious that the higher value point perks are in such limited supply, you’d have to stalk the site and then get lucky to redeem anything 1000 or above. I’m Rouge now but like others, always check Ulta, Dermstore, Nordstrom first and will almost always buy from one of those before Sephora if possible. I did appreciate the trial size Drunk Elephant Umbra Tinte I got as a weekly special GWP from Sephora last week (and then confirmed that Umbra is not for me).

  • Kimmwc03

    I got my free brush last month. I like it; I used it to apply my foundation this morning. It’s not exactly the most exciting thing (a not really exclusive) but I’ll take it. The exclusive shades of blush (last year was NARS) or lipstick is more exciting, even though the sizes are tiny.

    I completely agree about Sephora needing to improve the points perks. I have about 5000 points but there is usually nothing I want to sample. I usually wait for a new mascara to pop-up.

  • Brandy

    I haven’t shopped at Sephora in 2 years so that tells you how much I like them. I love Ulta’s reward system and the fact that I always seem to get a free gift when I go. Someone else mentioned getting 20% off at Rite Aid, which I also get, so I shop there mostly. Sephora just doesn’t give me any incentive to shop there like Ulta and Rite Aid.

    • Kitty Moon

      For me it’s the opposite. I’ve been an Ulta member for over three years and have spent less than $300. I don’t use walmart brands, so that’s a factor. I love the perks at Sephora, could be why I spend enough per year to make Rouge.
      It’s kind of astounding how much bitter “disappointment” is being thrown at product miniatures that would cost an easy $20. I mean, what do you people want??? Here’s an idea – appreciate things!

  • Brenda Cremer

    Yes, I totally agree, the brush is sitting in my drawer not being used. Very disappointed. Not much more to say than that. I live in Canada so I don’t have the option to go to Ulta, so I’m stuck with Sephora.

  • Deborah

    Just putting in my two cents worth, since I find it rather intriguing how almost everyone feels that the point redemptions aren’t worth it. From a South-East Asian perspective, it wasn’t until last year that they brought in the white/black/gold card (equivalents of your vib and vib rouge) memberships. In a region where in-store samples and goodies are limited (if even any) and also noting how heavy the exchange rate can be, offers like what you are getting (PS. would love it if we had Ulta or an equivalent) would have been very quickly snagged since they seem terribly worth it here and gives us the opportunity to try stuff without splurging on a full size. That too being somewhat a mediocre range of choices since we get only certain brands via Sephora here, though fortunately the store has been more updated and on time with the latest releases lately

    • Isabella Muse

      I think we’re a little more spoiled in the US 😀 If you’re in a country/area that’s a bit stingy with freebies and samples I can imagine this is a nice gift but when in our market it’s fairly common to get gifts with purchase, rewards, etc..so when we do get something like this we kind of shrug and get disappointed. We should consider though that others aren’t as lucky!

  • Kitty Moon

    I rarely meet a makeup brush that “renders useless” in this house! I mean even the worst brushes get used as knick-knack dusters! But this is a VERY nice brush. I constantly switch up how I apply makeup – sometimes with brushes, sometimes sponges, sometimes fingers…. I do love this brush though, so much that I bought two more elsewhere. It’s densely packed, which I love. I use them currently for contour, blush, and bronzing. I’m all about the “mini/travel size” too.
    Did I initially feel that the “gift” was kind of chintzy? Yeah. But I do love it and I use it lots. I love how it feels and what it can do.