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Face Off Of The Beauty Retailers: Sephora vs. ULTA Beauty

Beauty Retailers: Sephora Vs. ULTA Beauty

Sephora and ULTA Beauty are the most well-known beauty retailers who aim to achieve one goal: to make women around the globe feel beautiful just like they’ve stepped out of a salon. Both the beauty houses engage in a fierce battle to win over the beauty addicts. However, the divas have always been unable to make up their minds about which one of the two stores is better.

Mostly, the arguments in the Sephora vs. ULTA Beauty debate are based on the word of mouth rather than any substantial research or study. A common perception is that the makeup beginners flock to the ULTA beauty while Sephora is for the more accomplished makeup junkies.

The Beginnings

Beauty Retailers

Founded by Dominique Mandonnaud in 1969, Sephora offers a wide variety of cosmetic brands to choose from several of which are high-end makeup brands. The in-house brand Sephora has also generated quite a hype among the makeup aficionados.

Beauty Retailers

Founded in 1990, ULTA Beauty is a relative newcomer but took the makeup industry by storm and now claims to be the largest beauty retailer in the USA. Unlike Sephora, ULTA Beauty caters to a larger segment of the beauty artists as it houses relatively cheaper brands as well.

Makeup Offerings

With more than 17,000 products from more than 300 makeup brands Sephora inventory is quite rich. The in-house Sephora brand adds to the variety of makeup options available for the makeup addicts. However, most of these brands are listed under the luxury category and are not easy on the pocket. On the contrary, the 22,000 products strong ULT Beauty has a wider variety to offer. With the aim of All things beauty, all in one place, ULTA Beauty includes everything from MAC to L’Oréal.

Rewards and Gifts

The Beauty Insider Sephora rewards program offers 1 reward point against each dollar spent. The members can redeem these points for free products at the Reward Bazaar or custom makeovers etc. The best thing is that Sephora Beauty Insider reward points never expire.

ULTA beauty also offers one reward point against one dollar spent under the Ultamate Rewards program. However, the points are valid only for one year.


Both ULTA Beauty and Sephora pricing is nearly the same and the brands follow the brand pricing. However, the women who prefer higher-end makeup and do not worry about the price tag tend to opt for Sephora while those in search of drug-store makeup mostly end up at ULTA Beauty.

It’s quite difficult to declare a clear winner in this beauty retailers war. However, the fact remains that both Sephora and ULTA Beauty have played a solid role in giving a boost to the beauty industry.

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