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Working at Ulta??

post #1 of 45
Thread Starter 
Hello, I was at Ulta yesterday (I bought China Glaze Ruby Pumps and wow I love it!). Anyway, I noticed they were hiring for the holidays. What is it like to work there? Is it hard to get in? Last year I turned down a job at Clinque (I didn't want to, the training interferred with my full time job at the time and it really made me sad to - still does - to turn it down! ). I really can use the money, and have aprox. 10 years of retail/selling experience but always feel a little iffy about applying to places like that (like everyone there is so young/skinny, etc!)
Any thoughts or advice?
post #2 of 45
Thread Starter 

Re: Working at Ulta??

Just an update, I did apply. I know it's not the best way to get into the industry but I really like Ulta and really need a part-time job. (Imagine the discounts!) I will let you know if i hear anything.
post #3 of 45

Re: Working at Ulta??

Quote:
Originally Posted by BEA2LS View Post
Hello, I was at Ulta yesterday (I bought China Glaze Ruby Pumps and wow I love it!). Anyway, I noticed they were hiring for the holidays. What is it like to work there? Is it hard to get in? Last year I turned down a job at Clinque (I didn't want to, the training interferred with my full time job at the time and it really made me sad to - still does - to turn it down! ). I really can use the money, and have aprox. 10 years of retail/selling experience but always feel a little iffy about applying to places like that (like everyone there is so young/skinny, etc!)
Any thoughts or advice?
As a current employee of Ulta, I'll shed some light on my experience.

The hourly wage is fairly low, and unfortunately, there is no commission. However, with the retail climate as it is like the weather, frosty in many parts, this isn't necessarily a detriment and you don't have the pressures of the counter and boutiques with their high goals.

I work with a really great team that I am very fortunate to be part of, so it's the customers that are really challenging, as many of them aren't familiar with Ulta. Since Ulta is striving to be such a one-stop shop, it feels at times that there are a million products. I'm considered a 'prestige consultant' and since many of my co-workers are so young (which I notice to be a trend with Ulta), I do feel the age difference at times.

Our department carries Smashbox, BE, Urban Decay, Paula Dorf, Anastasia, Stila, Pop Beauty, LORAC, Bourjois, Napoleon Perdis, Elizabeth Arden, Studio Gear, Sue Devitt, Iman, Too Faced, and many skincare lines. Some stores carry Philosophy and we're rumored to be in talks with Benefit.

As I used to work at Sephora a few years ago, I'm particularly sensitive to the Ulta vs. Sephora snobbery that goes on. Unfortunately it doesn't help that Ulta seems to be snapping up the brands that Sephora is no longer carrying, but Sephora seems very fickle with their vendors, in my opinion.

Brand support is fair to moderate with our store, and you do get some specialized training in the lines, but it's more along the lines of benefits, ingredients and features rather than specific makeup techniques, save for some of the Bare Escentuals, Smashbox, Napoleon, and Lorac trainings that I've experienced.

Oh and it doesn't seem to be too hard to be employed with Ulta, especially compared to Sephora, but I'm sure that it depends on your area and store need.

Positives for me are that the Ulta private line for makeup was a surprise in the richness of pigment and quality of the brushes. Not too shabby, especially for the price, and I've used everything out there practically. Another benefit of employment of course is that you get advance notice of new lines and products and collections within those lines.

My main issue with Ulta besides the wage is that we really don't get very much gratis at all (especially compared to Sephora), so that's a little bit of a downer. Most of the gratis I've received seems to be from the actual vendors themselves and only happens during trainings, which are infrequent.

The regular employee discount is 25% and sometimes we get friends and family and employee appreciation days that range from 35-40% off.

Another factor that is a drawback is that sometimes you won't get your actual schedule until 2 days before the following week starts. Yeah, I know it's retail, but STILL.

Many hours get cut on subsequent schedules due to the lack of previous week's sales, so it is very likely that your personal schedule will sometimes change the day before you come in, so you need to check it and ask lots of questions. Major peeve of mine, but I've been fairly flexible for a few months.

One last thing is that Ulta has those circulars and catalogs with coupons that they send out to their Beauty Club members (with certain restrictions), and I've noticed that not all of the employees are on the same page about what items are actually advertised, restricted, limited or even carried in a particular store.

You'll have everyone and their grandmother coming in for the BE $9.99 doorbuster, for example, and you won't have an idea of what they are talking about until you stay super savvy on the Ulta circular.

Wow, what a sermon. TMI, eh?

Good luck and let us know how it goes.
post #4 of 45

Re: Working at Ulta??

Not TMI! This was great and you shared it on Christmas Day, no less. Thanks. I am glad that you are able to look at the positives and to enjoy the experience for what it is. That is what life is all about.

I am curious, though, about your experience at Sephora. Did you like it? Why did you leave?

And getting back to Ulta, what was the traffic like this holiday season?

Thanks again, good luck and keep up that positive attitude. It will go a long way!
post #5 of 45
Thread Starter 

Re: Working at Ulta??

thanks so much, i actually applied too late for the holiday season (they were nice enough to call and tell me they liked my app but they have no openings now - i was impressed they even bothered to call, to be honest)
I do not have a local sephora - there is one about 35 min away but too far for a part time job.
I like ulta a lot - i recently have gotten into them. i recieved a make up kit from them as a christmas present and was also very impressed with the pigment in their eye shadow.
again, thanks so much for taking the time to answer me.
post #6 of 45

Re: Working at Ulta??

I could not agree with June more. I work as a Prestige/Fragrance consultant as well an everything she explained is

right on the dot.

I really like working at Ulta, i've been with them for almost 2 yrs now. It's such a fun job and can be very laid

back to work at, but not too laid back because your managers put you to work. Thats the thing, I'm supposed to be

in Prestige mainly, because that's the hours they give me. They have a certain amount of hours for each dept. you

work in, but there's lots of times i have to jump on the register to get the line down esp. around holidays it gets

all the way to the back of the store and customers are hot, frustrated, give you dirty looks if you're not on the

register but on the floor lol. I also do some tasking which is stocking, filling, all that stuff which requires

more heavy lifting. I'm an all around good employee cuz i can do everything there with good effort, but my main

responsibility is to work in my dept and sell, demonstrate and do makeovers and make the goals and book

appointments, maintain the esthetics and make sure customers are getting their help.

Although i do all this work, i feel like im not getting paid enough. And that is a big part of why i want to leave

and go elsewhere. I don't do makeup applications everyday which i would enjoy greatly, but i have a bitch of a

manager who's always eyeing me when i do makeup on someone and making sure i get all of the application/sale done

within 15 mins..she can kiss my ass. She says that Ulta is all about making the sales and doesnt focus as much on

artistry...which i think i bullshit..we carry over 30 prestige brands and we can't take advantage of it as much as

we should? Yea we have tons of events n all and its mainly for the vendors to do the makeup, but i feel like i have

something to offer and for her to put me down like that really upsets me and sorta hurts...so if i get this job

with mac, i'll show her!

Ulta is a beauty destination..and i wish i could make a change in Ulta's reputation because a lot of customers are

unaware that we do makeovers and that we even have a salon. I want Ulta to be more known for talent and for

customers to want to keep coming to us for makeup like they do come to Mac. Maybe one day it will happen...but it

wont be for a while.

Whew sorry for the rant..

I really love the trainings because i love learning about ingredients and skincare and behind the lines as well. I

agree we don't get much gratis which sucks because we work so hard...i heard sephora gets a bunch of gratis every

month from this one vendor i know who used to work there. Gratis also helps us sell better because we can utilize

the products and feel more comfortable with selling it..i know i get that way when i get gratis or buy something

from Ulta which i do a lot! lol

The discount is 25% off but like 4-5 or more times a yr we get friends and family events where we get 35-40% like

june said and we can tell a certain amt of our family or friends to come in and use our discount. Like we just had

one on Christmas Eve..they told us the day of which pisses me off lol because i was unprepared and now im broke til

my next paycheck comes. That was strictly for employees though. Lately with the friends and family discounts they

wouldnt tell us til like 2-3 days before when they used to tell us like 2 wks ahead of time and we would be

prepared. Also we used to get 35%-40% off for fragrances and mass brands (like l'oreal) but lately they have only

let us use our usual 25% off fragrance and mass brands but we were surprised we could use 40% EVERYTHING on

Christmas Eve..i took advantage of the fragrance lol.


Oh and the hours..ugh dont get me started on that! The hours reflect on our weekly goals..if we make our goals or

go over we get the hours we want, if we don't then your next schedule looks like crap OR it looks decent, but then

your manager calls you while you're getting ready for work or what not and tells you not to come in that day..or

when you're working, they tell you to leave 2 hours early..yea its like that and it really pisses me off. The

economy has been so bad this yr that i did not work as many hrs as i did last yr wit Ulta...they actually cut hrs

around the holidays which they never did last yr. I can go on n on but ill stop right there..

Yea ive been mad with Ulta lately because of the hrs and pay...and unfair promoting.

But overlooking those negative thoughts on Ulta..it is a nice place to work, you get along with everyone, the managers are cool (except i can really dislike this one manager at times because she's bipolar), the beauty events are so much fun, the trainings are great, it's a very simple job, but then again customers can be very frustrating and spoiled with the coupons, samples and free gifts (thats a whole other story).

I guess i told tmi lol..just wanted to put my 2 cents in, but Ulta does have a lot of positives too!


Sorry i wrote so much! =P
post #7 of 45

Re: Working at Ulta??

dont know why everything's double spaced!
post #8 of 45
Thread Starter 

Re: Working at Ulta??

thanks so so much for the details! I really like ulta, last time i was there they had someone doing eyebrows for free. how cool is that seriously? and she was awesome and i booked a repeat appointment for her.
i rather go there than my mall because it's faster and i can get my paul mitchell shampoos as well as sally hansen nail stuff in the same place, which i like.
also, it supports my biggest obsession, which is essie, china glaze and opi nail polish!
i never had my make-up done there but i have had purchased urban decay a lot there, as i love their eye shadows as much (sometimes more!) than mac. i also sometimes do not like to make-up counters. why? i have no idea i find them a bit intimadating but never feel that way in ulta (or serphora either for that matter)
post #9 of 45

Re: Working at Ulta??

I'll try to reply here all at once because I don't want to be that annoying person that replies to everything individually.

Quote:
Originally Posted by BEA2LS View Post
thanks so much, i actually applied too late for the holiday season (they were nice enough to call and tell me they liked my app but they have no openings now - i was impressed they even bothered to call, to be honest)
I do not have a local sephora - there is one about 35 min away but too far for a part time job.
I like ulta a lot - i recently have gotten into them. i recieved a make up kit from them as a christmas present and was also very impressed with the pigment in their eye shadow.
again, thanks so much for taking the time to answer me.
Sure, no problem.

Too bad the Sephora near you is so far away. My opinion is that every person that's into makeup who can afford to work there (meaning lower wage, part-time hours) should do so. It's quite the experience.



Quote:
Originally Posted by SallyPal View Post
Not TMI! This was great and you shared it on Christmas Day, no less. Thanks. I am glad that you are able to look at the positives and to enjoy the experience for what it is. That is what life is all about.

I am curious, though, about your experience at Sephora. Did you like it? Why did you leave?

And getting back to Ulta, what was the traffic like this holiday season?

Thanks again, good luck and keep up that positive attitude. It will go a long way!
I liked working at Sephora, but was hired on a seasonal basis and declined the full-time offer to stay on because I went to esthetician school and then started working in a medical spa. As a corporation, they are very professional and are generally a good company to work for. (I worked for them when I still lived in Los Angeles)

As with any major conglomerate, it depends on the region and the particular store that you work for. I found the Sephora that I applied to in Seattle to be extremely snotty and unprofessional (worse than anything I encountered in L.A., which was very amusing), so I didn't follow through with the process. Thankfully there's another much nicer store not very far away so I will be giving them my business instead. Hello MUFE and Nars.

The traffic was terrible this season at Ulta, from a combination of poor sales and also this freakish snow storm that started over a week ago. We'll see what it's like when I come in later today, but I suspect that there will be the doorbuster crowd and the returns/exchanges crowd.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mslips View Post
I could not agree with June more. I work as a Prestige/Fragrance consultant as well an everything she explained is

right on the dot.

I really like working at Ulta, i've been with them for almost 2 yrs now. It's such a fun job and can be very laid

back to work at, but not too laid back because your managers put you to work.....etc.
Thanks so much, mslips, for your .02. It's good to hear from others who work at Ulta elsewhere. Sadly, Sephora is tops with their gratis. Most of us used to average about 20 pieces a week in addition to what the vendors provided, so working there actually saved me money because I hardly had to buy anything! I was so grateful to really be able to explain a lot to the customers, having had tried most items in the store at home.

One has got to be positive when you are dealing with the public. I can't seem to do any retail jobs other than working for Ulta or Sephora, and fortunately, I haven't had too many psychos, although.....

The other day this week, a woman came in being all bitchy and was staring other employees down. I ended up helping her in B.E., and then she became more comfortable and then asked me to help her find stuff in other depts.

We get to the personal care appliances section when she just turns to me out of the blue and asks if Ulta carries sex toys?

I think that she wanted to shock me or something, but I've seen and heard it all and just said no without missing a beat. She looked very disappointed!
post #10 of 45
Thread Starter 

Re: Working at Ulta??

thanks again - i have a full time job but would like to find a part time in the beauty world because i need money but also i would like to get my foot in the door and eventually change to doing this full time.
post #11 of 45

Re: Working at Ulta??

I just love Ulta to go shopping, but Sephora IMO is better.I have a couple friends who work at Sephora and 1 at Ulta.I applied to Ulta, but due to my school schedule I couldn't take the job because they were looking for certain hours.My hours were jacked!
I stopped going to Ulta for awhile one time because of a hair stylist who was trying to beat down my decision about how I want to cut my hair (long story), but now I just go there to get my nail polishes.I have a Ulta card, but I'm still confused about their beauty program..
post #12 of 45

Re: Working at Ulta??

Quote:
Originally Posted by junefontaine View Post
I'll try to reply here all at once because I don't want to be that annoying person that replies to everything individually.



Sure, no problem.

Too bad the Sephora near you is so far away. My opinion is that every person that's into makeup who can afford to work there (meaning lower wage, part-time hours) should do so. It's quite the experience.





I liked working at Sephora, but was hired on a seasonal basis and declined the full-time offer to stay on because I went to esthetician school and then started working in a medical spa. As a corporation, they are very professional and are generally a good company to work for. (I worked for them when I still lived in Los Angeles)

As with any major conglomerate, it depends on the region and the particular store that you work for. I found the Sephora that I applied to in Seattle to be extremely snotty and unprofessional (worse than anything I encountered in L.A., which was very amusing), so I didn't follow through with the process. Thankfully there's another much nicer store not very far away so I will be giving them my business instead. Hello MUFE and Nars.

The traffic was terrible this season at Ulta, from a combination of poor sales and also this freakish snow storm that started over a week ago. We'll see what it's like when I come in later today, but I suspect that there will be the doorbuster crowd and the returns/exchanges crowd.



Thanks so much, mslips, for your .02. It's good to hear from others who work at Ulta elsewhere. Sadly, Sephora is tops with their gratis. Most of us used to average about 20 pieces a week in addition to what the vendors provided, so working there actually saved me money because I hardly had to buy anything! I was so grateful to really be able to explain a lot to the customers, having had tried most items in the store at home.

One has got to be positive when you are dealing with the public. I can't seem to do any retail jobs other than working for Ulta or Sephora, and fortunately, I haven't had too many psychos, although.....

The other day this week, a woman came in being all bitchy and was staring other employees down. I ended up helping her in B.E., and then she became more comfortable and then asked me to help her find stuff in other depts.

We get to the personal care appliances section when she just turns to me out of the blue and asks if Ulta carries sex toys?

I think that she wanted to shock me or something, but I've seen and heard it all and just said no without missing a beat. She looked very disappointed!

LMAO..that's crazy!! i never got that one! Who in the hell would think Ulta carries sex toys? lol! Did you laugh when she asked that? I would have lol!


Yea I worked today..expecting it to be very busy, but it wasn't! I asked fellow employees if the morning was busy and they said no..i was sorta upset because that makes the hours suck for us..which i got my sched. for next wk and am disappointed...but i knew it was going to happen! I just dont understand why all the cashiers'task get more hours, when prestige drives the business...we sell and make the money! Task i can understand, but cashiers? not really..at my Ulta we have 3 lead cashiers and 6 regular ones..we really don't need 3 cashiers on the register when the line is going to be so short and one person on the floor? that's how it was for me today..very irritating. my prestige manager was in the office most of the time. and for some reason ppl were super moddy/bitchy today..which just made my mood turn down and worsened my headache.


Yea i want gratis!! i really wish ulta would get gratis like sephora does! and i wish we could carry make up for ever! its one of my favorite brands!! i heard we might carry philosophy? i also heard we used to? some ultas have the beautiful benefit boutique/brow bar already. No fair!

Today i was putting new too faced testers out (since we're having a confessions of a shopaholic event coming up)..n throwing out whats old and that glamour to go compact we got two brand new ones in and my manager told me to book 5 ppl in my shift in order to have one..i was so mad, but i got 7 people so i have it now =) She's making it harder to get gratis, she used to just give it to me, but now shes making people work for it..and it made me think of sephora n how lucky they are lol
post #13 of 45

Re: Working at Ulta??

Quote:
Originally Posted by lovesong View Post
I just love Ulta to go shopping, but Sephora IMO is better.I have a couple friends who work at Sephora and 1 at Ulta.I applied to Ulta, but due to my school schedule I couldn't take the job because they were looking for certain hours.My hours were jacked!
I stopped going to Ulta for awhile one time because of a hair stylist who was trying to beat down my decision about how I want to cut my hair (long story), but now I just go there to get my nail polishes.I have a Ulta card, but I'm still confused about their beauty program..
It's taken me a bit to figure out, but since a bunch of people have been coming in to redeem their rewards certificates, I think that I've finally got it.

Every time you make a purchase and use your card, you earn one point for every dollar that you spend, and this is on every single purchase, no matter what the item, price or dept. that it's from.

The program is quarterly, so the points accumulate on a quarterly basis, but unfortunately, don't carry over to the next quarter. Example, during the 3 month period of July-Oct, you earned 300 points. You would be a level 6 and would get your certificate mailed to you with your Ulta catalog after the quarter is over.

Every 50 points that you accumulate within every 3 month period earns you a level. The levels are unlimited and the neat thing is that you can combine levels. Example, you are a level 6, but you might want to get a couple of gifts, so you can get one gift in the level 2 category and also one gift in the level 4 category. As long as it equates to whatever level you've reached, you can mix and match.

Some of the gifts are pretty neat and can be a hair dryer, a prestige hair care item, etc. Obviously, the more points earned, the better the gifts, but even the level 2's have something useful to offer like Ulta nail polish or Neutrogena eye makeup remover, stuff like that.

I've noticed that many of our members get a free gift during their birthday month, which is a small token of appreciation that Ulta likes to show to their loyal customers. With the catalogs sent to beauty members, and if you sign up for Ulta's email promos, you can get advance notice of new products and sales from the warehouse before they are printed in the circular, which can come in pretty handy if you're a serious beauty junkie on a major budget.

The program is entirely confidential and your name isn't sold or traded anywhere, which is important in this identity theft-ridden society nowadays. Privacy is key and spam does suck. If you do ever forget your beauty card, you can always be credited later for the points that you've earned, and apparently you can add them yourself on Ulta.com, although I haven't tried it yet.

If you use your beauty club card and combine it with a sale like a BUY ONE GET ONE FREE, etc., and also throw in a vendor/manufacturer's coupon, the savings can be unbelievable. We do accept coupons as long as they are not expired and aren't a Target only, common sense stuff, but you would be surprised at what people try to pull off. Haha.

Hope that this helps shed some light on the beauty program. Happy shopping.
post #14 of 45

Re: Working at Ulta??

I love Ulta more than Sephora. In my Ulta the customer service is much better than the Sephora in my city. I also like that they always have sales and that the sales people don't bug you. In my Sephora I've been too many times if I needed help on anything. Hey if I need help you'll certainly hear from me. hehe! Oh and they are having a friends and family sale starting Jan. 15-19! 20% off entire purchase (exclusions apply).
post #15 of 45

Re: Working at Ulta??

Quote:
Originally Posted by junefontaine View Post
It's taken me a bit to figure out, but since a bunch of people have been coming in to redeem their rewards certificates, I think that I've finally got it.

Every time you make a purchase and use your card, you earn one point for every dollar that you spend, and this is on every single purchase, no matter what the item, price or dept. that it's from.

The program is quarterly, so the points accumulate on a quarterly basis, but unfortunately, don't carry over to the next quarter. Example, during the 3 month period of July-Oct, you earned 300 points. You would be a level 6 and would get your certificate mailed to you with your Ulta catalog after the quarter is over.

Every 50 points that you accumulate within every 3 month period earns you a level. The levels are unlimited and the neat thing is that you can combine levels. Example, you are a level 6, but you might want to get a couple of gifts, so you can get one gift in the level 2 category and also one gift in the level 4 category. As long as it equates to whatever level you've reached, you can mix and match.

Some of the gifts are pretty neat and can be a hair dryer, a prestige hair care item, etc. Obviously, the more points earned, the better the gifts, but even the level 2's have something useful to offer like Ulta nail polish or Neutrogena eye makeup remover, stuff like that.

I've noticed that many of our members get a free gift during their birthday month, which is a small token of appreciation that Ulta likes to show to their loyal customers. With the catalogs sent to beauty members, and if you sign up for Ulta's email promos, you can get advance notice of new products and sales from the warehouse before they are printed in the circular, which can come in pretty handy if you're a serious beauty junkie on a major budget.

The program is entirely confidential and your name isn't sold or traded anywhere, which is important in this identity theft-ridden society nowadays. Privacy is key and spam does suck. If you do ever forget your beauty card, you can always be credited later for the points that you've earned, and apparently you can add them yourself on Ulta.com, although I haven't tried it yet.

If you use your beauty club card and combine it with a sale like a BUY ONE GET ONE FREE, etc., and also throw in a vendor/manufacturer's coupon, the savings can be unbelievable. We do accept coupons as long as they are not expired and aren't a Target only, common sense stuff, but you would be surprised at what people try to pull off. Haha.

Hope that this helps shed some light on the beauty program. Happy shopping.
Great info! I have been wondering about that too. Do you know if I can check how many points I have? And when I should expect to get a certificate for free stuff if ever I get the minimum points? I am not sure if the quarters are like january-march, april-june, july-sept, oct-december?

Thanks!
post #16 of 45

Re: Working at Ulta??

How long have you been a club member? I'm sure you can check your points at Ulta.com.

The certificate comes every 3-4 months
post #17 of 45

Re: Working at Ulta??

Hello girls!
I have a job interview on wednesday in Ulta. Can somebody tell me how does the interview look like? What can i expect?

thank you
post #18 of 45

Just thought I'd add to this since it helped me so much when I was applying at Ulta.  I guess I'll start at the beginning.  I started working for MAC in a Nordstrom in December of 2009.  It was a great experience and the most rewarding job I've had to date.  Great pay, great team, great gratis, great training, great discount - all around wonderful.  Unfortunately, I was let go in April of 2010 because of a status I posted on Facebook.  Long story short, either don't be friends with your managers or leave social networking sites to social networking and leave your job out of it.  Anyway, in May of 2011, I decided to get back into the retail side of makeup because honestly, gas is expensive and if I'm going to work a part time job, it should be in a field that I'm interested in.  I applied at Ulta.  A few weeks went by and I heard nothing so I decided to call the store and I talked to the manager who told me that my application was lost somewhere on the internet and that I should come in for an interview which we scheduled for the following weekend.  I went in for the interview which was pretty basic - What is your employment background? Why do you want to work for Ulta? What would you do if you were dealing with a difficult customer? etc.  I thought it went well and spoke to the Prestige manager who seemed really interested in hiring me.  A week went by and I decided to call to check on the status but the manager was out and I was told to call back which I did every day for the following two weeks.  Finally one of the other managers got a little tired of hearing from me and informed me that the General Manager was on vacation and that she would return the following week. I waited that week and called back and finally go a hold of the general manager who offered me the job as a Prestige Consultant.  I had asked for $10 an hour but received $9 an hour which I guess is the max starting pay for Ulta.  I've been working there for a month now.  

 

Good: 

  • I work with a great team.  Everyone is really knowledgable and willing to help you find your footing.
  • Gratis is surprisingly good.  I didn't expect it to be anything like MAC because of how awesome MAC is about gratis but I was pleasantly surprised.  We get gratis every time there's training from a makeup brand.
  • Really relaxed atmosphere.  No sales goals, no quota you have to meet.
  • You essentially get to play with makeup all day and they pay you for it.
  • Flexible schedule. I often have photo shoots or weddings on weekends and have not had a problem getting the time off. 
  • Dress code is really good.  Black pants, black shoes, black or white top.  No restrictions on what kind of shoes, pants, tops etc.  I usually wear capri pants, a t-shirt and some flip flops.  

 

Bad: 

  • Coming from the world of MAC where everything is go go go, to be thrown into a job where you literally spend hours doing nothing is kind of a shock.  Time seems to drag on in Ulta where a 4 hour shift at MAC goes by like nothing.
  • Discount is only 25%.  Yes I know it's better than nothing and I should be grateful for it but again, spoiled by MAC's 60%.
  • I literally only work 4 hours a week.  
  • $9 an hour at 4 hours a week is only $36.  Take out taxes and that's only $24.  I'm not sure that's even worth the gas to get there.  
  • No real artistry or skill required.  I do often feel like my talent is wasted.  We have brush belts and I make a point to wear one every time I work in the hopes that someone will as me to put eyeshadow on them so I won't feel like it's a waste of time.
  • I hear gratis doesn't come that often.  I've only worked there for a month but we have about 6 weeks of training coming up.  As I understand it, after that, we won't have training or get gratis for a long time.  
  • When products are discontinued, we have to throw them out.  Even though they're going in the trash, we can't take them with us.  Too Faced just recently decided to discontinue a bunch of stuff and it's all sitting in this bin in the back room waiting to be thrown out.  What a waste!
  • I understand theft is an issue but we have to carry all of our belongings in clear bags that get checked when we leave.  uhh, not everyone needs to see my tampons.

 

Overall: Although I went into this knowing that I'd only be working a little bit of time during the week and that I'd only be getting $9 an hour, it's kind of disheartening to actually experience it.  I've only worked there a month and already feel like I've gotten as much out of it as I can.  There's only so many times I can play with Urban Decay's stuff or any of the other makeup and skincare they have on that side.  I applied to work for a studio where they do hair and makeup for weddings, photo shoots, and the like and was hired today.  I think I'm going to wait until training is done at Ulta and then leave.  I imagine it would be a really great job for someone who is really just starting in makeup or retail sales.  It's just that I realize what a huge step down I took coming from MAC. 


Edited by lilqtpy85 - 7/21/11 at 9:44pm
post #19 of 45

Does anyone have information on the "prestige manager" position? I'm thinking of applying for it and would like to know what responsibilities set it apart from "prestige consultant." Are they also responsible for applying/selling makeup? 

post #20 of 45

They are, it's the same thing as prestige consultant you are on the floor selling and you are responsible for all the goals.

post #21 of 45

Thanks!

post #22 of 45

How did you get your job at Ulta? I know you have to apply online, but did they call you or did you call them and ask?

post #23 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by junefontaine View Post

Quote:
Originally Posted by BEA2LS View Post
Hello, I was at Ulta yesterday (I bought China Glaze Ruby Pumps and wow I love it!). Anyway, I noticed they were hiring for the holidays. What is it like to work there? Is it hard to get in? Last year I turned down a job at Clinque (I didn't want to, the training interferred with my full time job at the time and it really made me sad to - still does - to turn it down! ). I really can use the money, and have aprox. 10 years of retail/selling experience but always feel a little iffy about applying to places like that (like everyone there is so young/skinny, etc!)
Any thoughts or advice?
As a current employee of Ulta, I'll shed some light on my experience.

The hourly wage is fairly low, and unfortunately, there is no commission. However, with the retail climate as it is like the weather, frosty in many parts, this isn't necessarily a detriment and you don't have the pressures of the counter and boutiques with their high goals.

I work with a really great team that I am very fortunate to be part of, so it's the customers that are really challenging, as many of them aren't familiar with Ulta. Since Ulta is striving to be such a one-stop shop, it feels at times that there are a million products. I'm considered a 'prestige consultant' and since many of my co-workers are so young (which I notice to be a trend with Ulta), I do feel the age difference at times.

Our department carries Smashbox, BE, Urban Decay, Paula Dorf, Anastasia, Stila, Pop Beauty, LORAC, Bourjois, Napoleon Perdis, Elizabeth Arden, Studio Gear, Sue Devitt, Iman, Too Faced, and many skincare lines. Some stores carry Philosophy and we're rumored to be in talks with Benefit.

As I used to work at Sephora a few years ago, I'm particularly sensitive to the Ulta vs. Sephora snobbery that goes on. Unfortunately it doesn't help that Ulta seems to be snapping up the brands that Sephora is no longer carrying, but Sephora seems very fickle with their vendors, in my opinion.

Brand support is fair to moderate with our store, and you do get some specialized training in the lines, but it's more along the lines of benefits, ingredients and features rather than specific makeup techniques, save for some of the Bare Escentuals, Smashbox, Napoleon, and Lorac trainings that I've experienced.

Oh and it doesn't seem to be too hard to be employed with Ulta, especially compared to Sephora, but I'm sure that it depends on your area and store need.

Positives for me are that the Ulta private line for makeup was a surprise in the richness of pigment and quality of the brushes. Not too shabby, especially for the price, and I've used everything out there practically. Another benefit of employment of course is that you get advance notice of new lines and products and collections within those lines.

My main issue with Ulta besides the wage is that we really don't get very much gratis at all (especially compared to Sephora), so that's a little bit of a downer. Most of the gratis I've received seems to be from the actual vendors themselves and only happens during trainings, which are infrequent.

The regular employee discount is 25% and sometimes we get friends and family and employee appreciation days that range from 35-40% off.

Another factor that is a drawback is that sometimes you won't get your actual schedule until 2 days before the following week starts. Yeah, I know it's retail, but STILL.

Many hours get cut on subsequent schedules due to the lack of previous week's sales, so it is very likely that your personal schedule will sometimes change the day before you come in, so you need to check it and ask lots of questions. Major peeve of mine, but I've been fairly flexible for a few months.

One last thing is that Ulta has those circulars and catalogs with coupons that they send out to their Beauty Club members (with certain restrictions), and I've noticed that not all of the employees are on the same page about what items are actually advertised, restricted, limited or even carried in a particular store.

You'll have everyone and their grandmother coming in for the BE $9.99 doorbuster, for example, and you won't have an idea of what they are talking about until you stay super savvy on the Ulta circular.

Wow, what a sermon. TMI, eh?

Good luck and let us know how it goes.

How'd you get the Ulta job? I applied online to a couple stores near me who are hiring and I'm wondering what to do next. Any advice?

post #24 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by amahoney View Post

How did you get your job at Ulta? I know you have to apply online, but did they call you or did you call them and ask?

if they are interested they would call you

post #25 of 45

Have you read the reviews on Ulta on glassdoor.com? I will keep my opinions to myself, but this is a good read if you are considering this company.......

 

http://www.glassdoor.com/Reviews/Ulta-Reviews-E9466.htm

post #26 of 45

how much did you get paid hourly at MAC? Did you get comission? ughh i wish i could work there..

post #27 of 45
Quote:
Originally Posted by lilqtpy85 View Post

Just thought I'd add to this since it helped me so much when I was applying at Ulta.  I guess I'll start at the beginning.  I started working for MAC in a Nordstrom in December of 2009.  It was a great experience and the most rewarding job I've had to date.  Great pay, great team, great gratis, great training, great discount - all around wonderful.  Unfortunately, I was let go in April of 2010 because of a status I posted on Facebook.  Long story short, either don't be friends with your managers or leave social networking sites to social networking and leave your job out of it.  Anyway, in May of 2011, I decided to get back into the retail side of makeup because honestly, gas is expensive and if I'm going to work a part time job, it should be in a field that I'm interested in.  I applied at Ulta.  A few weeks went by and I heard nothing so I decided to call the store and I talked to the manager who told me that my application was lost somewhere on the internet and that I should come in for an interview which we scheduled for the following weekend.  I went in for the interview which was pretty basic - What is your employment background? Why do you want to work for Ulta? What would you do if you were dealing with a difficult customer? etc.  I thought it went well and spoke to the Prestige manager who seemed really interested in hiring me.  A week went by and I decided to call to check on the status but the manager was out and I was told to call back which I did every day for the following two weeks.  Finally one of the other managers got a little tired of hearing from me and informed me that the General Manager was on vacation and that she would return the following week. I waited that week and called back and finally go a hold of the general manager who offered me the job as a Prestige Consultant.  I had asked for $10 an hour but received $9 an hour which I guess is the max starting pay for Ulta.  I've been working there for a month now.  

 

Good: 

  • I work with a great team.  Everyone is really knowledgable and willing to help you find your footing.
  • Gratis is surprisingly good.  I didn't expect it to be anything like MAC because of how awesome MAC is about gratis but I was pleasantly surprised.  We get gratis every time there's training from a makeup brand.
  • Really relaxed atmosphere.  No sales goals, no quota you have to meet.
  • You essentially get to play with makeup all day and they pay you for it.
  • Flexible schedule. I often have photo shoots or weddings on weekends and have not had a problem getting the time off. 
  • Dress code is really good.  Black pants, black shoes, black or white top.  No restrictions on what kind of shoes, pants, tops etc.  I usually wear capri pants, a t-shirt and some flip flops.  

 

Bad: 

  • Coming from the world of MAC where everything is go go go, to be thrown into a job where you literally spend hours doing nothing is kind of a shock.  Time seems to drag on in Ulta where a 4 hour shift at MAC goes by like nothing.
  • Discount is only 25%.  Yes I know it's better than nothing and I should be grateful for it but again, spoiled by MAC's 60%.
  • I literally only work 4 hours a week.  
  • $9 an hour at 4 hours a week is only $36.  Take out taxes and that's only $24.  I'm not sure that's even worth the gas to get there.  
  • No real artistry or skill required.  I do often feel like my talent is wasted.  We have brush belts and I make a point to wear one every time I work in the hopes that someone will as me to put eyeshadow on them so I won't feel like it's a waste of time.
  • I hear gratis doesn't come that often.  I've only worked there for a month but we have about 6 weeks of training coming up.  As I understand it, after that, we won't have training or get gratis for a long time.  
  • When products are discontinued, we have to throw them out.  Even though they're going in the trash, we can't take them with us.  Too Faced just recently decided to discontinue a bunch of stuff and it's all sitting in this bin in the back room waiting to be thrown out.  What a waste!
  • I understand theft is an issue but we have to carry all of our belongings in clear bags that get checked when we leave.  uhh, not everyone needs to see my tampons.

 

Overall: Although I went into this knowing that I'd only be working a little bit of time during the week and that I'd only be getting $9 an hour, it's kind of disheartening to actually experience it.  I've only worked there a month and already feel like I've gotten as much out of it as I can.  There's only so many times I can play with Urban Decay's stuff or any of the other makeup and skincare they have on that side.  I applied to work for a studio where they do hair and makeup for weddings, photo shoots, and the like and was hired today.  I think I'm going to wait until training is done at Ulta and then leave.  I imagine it would be a really great job for someone who is really just starting in makeup or retail sales.  It's just that I realize what a huge step down I took coming from MAC. 

How much did you get paid hourly at MAC? Was it comission??

post #28 of 45

how do you normally dress?

I was hired as a cashier and I was wondering what can I wear to switch it up from just a pair of black pants and a simple black shirt

Capris? Skirts? Dresses? Sleeveless?

Tshirts? Sandals? Sneakers? Flats?

post #29 of 45

no capris

skirts yes but not short

sleevless yes but not spaghetti strap

thsirts like plain ones no

pants can't be skinny they have to be dress pants

sandals yes but they have to look professional and if you wear open toes you have to have pedicure done

no sneakers

flats yes 

 

this is official dress code but it depends a lot on your managers too 

post #30 of 45

Thank you! that was very helpful and full detail :)

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