anyone work at nordstroms? HELP!!!


Well-known member
i don't know if topic belongs in here or not, but it kinda has to do with mac. i REALLLY want to work at the mac counter at nordstroms but if i get any cosmetic counter, i'd be happy about that too.

i applied online yesterday and they said that they would get back to me after reviewing it but from past experiences, they never call you back. so i was wondering if anyone who works at nordstrom can give me pointers on how to get the job.

when should i call them back about the status of my application, etc.

thanks so much!


Well-known member
now let's hope it's not the same for the other counters.
20% off mac stuff sounds pretty bomb.


I worked for Nordstrom in cosmetics for 3 years...

I just quit in December. Here's what I can tell you, it's only from *MY* experiences. Different stores and managers may be different!

First, they are trying to really use the web-site applications. We were told to direct people to that, rather than page a manager or send them up to HR. So it is your best way to go, and if you don't hear back from them, there is probably a reason. (No openings, not enough experience, whatever.)

MAC used to be very picky about who they hired, they had to have cosmetics and artistry experience, and also pass the interview process, which includes a make-up application as if you were doing it on a customer (which means explaining what you're doing, the product you're using, why you chose it, and in general, selling it.). I think they have loosened up a little in the past year or so, but if there is someone with experience, they will take them over the inexperienced every time. And the latter part of that statement above is still true, you have to get through the interview and make-up application stuff. Also, since they are owned by Lauder, I wouldn't be surprised to see them add a personality test called "talent plus" in the next year. Slowly all the other companies have added it, I believe MAC is the last one to not have it.

If you put on your Nordstrom application that you only want to work at MAC, you may have to wait a very long time. Anyone that works in the store gets 20% off MAC, by the way. MAC employees get much more off, if they order their product, and of course they get gratis, but purchases at the store are still only 20% off for them. Not that they ever need to make them! But depending on the turn-over and amount of applications, you are putting yourself at the bottom of the stack by picking only one company that you'll work for. I'd leave it open and then during the course of your first interview they will ask you which companies appeal to you. You can *always* turn down a job if it's offered, but if they think you are being too picky they won't be very interested.

And lastly, I know many people would love to work for MAC. I probably would (if I could stomach retail anymore) too. But you should realize that the reason they want seasoned salespeople is that they put more pressure on their people than any other line to sell and sell a lot. They have to keep their average IPT (items per transaction) above 3...doesn't sound hard, until you see how many people just come in to get a refill of a favorite product. Their AUS (average unit sale) goal is higher than most other lines, and the prices are often lower. Their goals are very high, and if you don't make them, you won't be happy. This is why they are most likely to hire people they think can meet and exceed their expectations. And honestly, it's probably not the best place to start out in cosmetics because of the pressure. You might be better off, if you're serious about working for MAC to start out with another line. But be warned, Nordstrom is *very* serious about the one-year committment they will ask you for. If you start with a line and then there's an opening in MAC but you've only been there 8 months, it's a very rare situation where they would allow you to move. After 12 months, all bets are off and you can go to another line, but you have to recommit for a year. (This is mostly for the sake of the lines that spend a lot to train you.)

In a nutshell, my advice is to be very friendly to everyone at the counter (because if they find out you applied, they *will* tell their manager whether they think you'd be a good employee); be flexible with what you ask for (line-wise) and flexible with when you can work; and know what you're getting in to. After 3 years of nights and weekends and ever-higher expectations and lower benefits, the 20% became so not worth it to me. But it can be fun, and I really miss some aspects of it. Just not enough to go back--yet at least!

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