Home FashionBeauty products What Is the Difference Between Sephora and Ulta? (Explained)

What Is the Difference Between Sephora and Ulta? (Explained)

by Logan
sephora vs ulta

If you’re an avid beauty buyer, you’ve probably been to an Ulta or Sephora — maybe even both. Many people recognize the two stores as one-stop shops for everything from makeup to skincare to haircare and all else in between. 

Ulta Beauty allegedly intended to open at least 100 new stores in 2018, as many other retailers closed their doors. To stay relevant, the cosmetics company is expanding into new regions, opening outlets in existing markets, and refurbishing existing stores, according to CNBC.

Ulta carries nearly twice as many brands as luxury beauty rival Sephora, with prices ranging from $3 to more than $100.

Since its stores offer a full suite of beauty services, Ulta competes with other beauty retailers, drugstores, and salons. Recently, a report by research firm Piper Jaffray revealed that Ulta had become the top beauty destination for average-income teens, overtaking Sephora for the first time in a year. 

Another reason Ulta sees success is that 90% of its locations are in suburban strip malls instead of enclosed shopping malls, meaning that it isn’t heavily affected by the ongoing decrease in shopping mall foot traffic.

Sephora has more locations in shopping malls than Ulta, though it’s taking action to move out of malls and open smaller areas called Sephora Studios to supplement decreasing mall traffic. 

Sephora is known for selling more high-end cosmetics, but Ulta has traditionally been associated with drugstore goods. The truth is that these two stores aren’t that dissimilar. Both stores provide a terrific shopping experience.

We were trying to figure out where you should go to obtain what. We’ve covered membership programs, rewards, product and brand selections, and shopping methods to help you choose the best store for you.

Keep reading to know more about everything you need to know about Sephora and Ulta.

Sephora

Sephora offers high-end cosmetics, whereas Ulta is known for selling drugstore items. These two stores aren’t all that dissimilar. With competitive loyalty programs, broad options, beauty treatments, and more, both stores offer a fantastic shopping experience.

Sephora carries several brands in addition to its own. The cosmetic firm offers weekly specials on trial and small sizes and two free samples with online shopping. Beauty Insiders can also save a lot of money on well-known products during Sephora’s annual spring sale.

sephora
Sephora

Ulta

As many other retailers closed their doors, Ulta Beauty supposedly planned to open at least 100 new outlets in 2018. With prices ranging from $3 to more than $100, Ulta carries nearly twice as many brands as luxury beauty rival Sephora.

The store’s in-house label, Ulta Beauty Collection, sells affordable beauty products ranging from skincare to beauty tools, including sheet masks starting under $1. Ulta makes it simple for people to shop for discounted beauty goods in-store and online, and the firm is constantly launching new deals, encouraging people to purchase, save, and sell more.

Difference Between Sephora and Ulta 

Difference Between Sephora and Ulta 

Selection of brands and products

Both stores have a large selection of products in all price ranges, and there is a lot of brand overlap between them. Sephora carries more high-end brands, whereas Ulta carries more drugstore brands.

Sephora

Sephora sells a variety of brands as well as its private label. The store’s in-house label, Sephora Collection, offers cheap beauty goods starting at $1.

Dior, La Mer, and Chanel are among the mid-tier and high-end brands carried by the store. Some of Sephora’s notable brands that aren’t available at Ulta include Fenty Beauty, Huda Beauty, and Charlotte Tilbury.

Ulta 

Ulta Beauty Collection is the store’s in-house label, selling affordable beauty products ranging from skincare to beauty tools, starting under $1 for a sheet mask.

There are lots of mid-tier brands to be found at Ulta, but what sets it apart is its selection of cheap cosmetic brands. Some drugstore brands you won’t find at Sephora include:

  • NYX
  • e.l.f. Cosmetics
  • L’Oréal.
ulta
Ulta

Sales and deals

Online sale areas and limited-time offers are available at both beauty stores. Ulta has frequent promotions, but Sephora offers more significant discounts during special events. Also, like many stores, the discounts are much more valuable if you join their membership programs.

Sephora

Weekly promotions on trial and petite sizes are available at the beauty business, and online orders come with two free samples. Sephora also has a vast yearly spring sale where Beauty Insiders may save a lot of money on well-known brands.

If you sign up for the rewards program, you can get a 10% discount on practically every product Sephora sells if you apply an exclusive coupon code. The discounts are even better for Rouge and VIB members, who save 15% and 20% on their purchases. With the coupon “FREESHIP,” anyone may obtain free shipping right now.

Ulta

Ulta makes it simple for individuals to shop for reduced beauty products in-store and online, and the company is continually releasing discounts, buying more, saving more, and selling items.

Its major sale events, such as the 21 Days of Beauty, the Gorgeous Hair Event, and the Love Your Skin Event, are known for offering Beauty Steals, where shoppers can save up to 50% on leading brands like Tarte and Glamglow, with discounts on changing every 24 hours.

Memberships

Both stores have membership systems that reward customers with points and provide them privileged access to deals and other benefits.

Sephora

Sephora’s is a membership program. To become a VIB Rouge member, that number goes up to $1,000 yearly.

sephora
Sephora

Ulta

Ulta’s loyalty program is called Ultimate Reward. Membership is divided into three categories: member, platinum member, and diamond member. To become a regular member, you do not need to spend a certain amount. To become a platinum member, you must pay $500 annually, and to become a diamond member, you must spend $1,200 annually.

Rewards program benefits

Beauty Insider and Ultimate Rewards programs offer great perks to shoppers, whether you’re spending lots of money at the store each year or none. Sephora offers its members more promotions while Ulta offers more birthday perks, but ultimately both programs reward shoppers similarly. 

Sephora

Becoming a Beauty Insider has numerous advantages. One of the most noticeable features is the rewards system, which converts your purchases into points that can be redeemed for merchandise at the Rewards Baazar. The following is a list of your benefits at each membership level.

Insider1 point for every $1 you spend, two free birthday gifts, and 10% off during seasonal savings events.
VIB1 point for every $1 you spend, two free birthday gifts, 15% off during seasonal savings events, and exclusive gifts with a monthly purchase.
VIB Rouge1 point for every $1 you spend, two free birthday gifts, 20% off during seasonal savings events, exclusive gifts with a monthly purchase, free standard shipping, access to exclusive events, and first-in-line for new product launches.
Sephora

Ulta

Ultimate Rewards members get many benefits that make future shopping hauls more affordable. Unlike Sephora, where points are redeemed as products, Ulta points are redeemed as cash discounts for future purposes. Here’s a breakdown of the rewards at every level:

Member 1 point for every $1 you spend, a free birthday gift, and double points during your birthday month.
Platinum1.25 points for every $1 you spend, a free birthday gift, double points during your birthday month, a $10 birthday coupon, and points that never expire.
Diamond 1.5 points for every $1 you spend, free birthday gift, double points during your birthday month, $10 birthday coupon, points never expire, everyday free shipping on orders of $25 or more, annual $25 beauty service reward card.
Ulta

Final Thoughts

  • Sephora sells high-end cosmetics, while Ulta is the drugstore of sales products.
  • Both stores provide a terrific shopping experience, with competitive loyalty programs, a wide range of products, beauty services, and more.
  • The cosmetics sector of Ulta, according to CNBC, is expanding into new nations, opening stores in existing areas, and remodeling old facilities to stay relevant.
  • Ulta has nearly twice as many brands as luxury beauty rival Sephora, with prices ranging from $3 to more than $100.

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