The Future of Cosmetics in Beauty Supply Stores: Rise of the MUAs

When purchasing cosmetic brands in beauty supply stores, you’ll find they are mainly low-priced products, which appeals to cosmetics demand of quality inexpensive makeup. With the growing demand for these products like Crown Pro, NYX and KISS, beauty supply store cosmetics are growing competition for department and cosmetic stores, such as Macy’s, which sells MAC and Dior cosmetics and Ulta and Sephora beauty stores, but there are still some differences between the two.


The most notable difference between buyers who purchase cosmetics at beauty supply stores and buyers who purchase cosmetics from the non-beauty stores is receiving makeup services and education about application of the products. All cosmetic brands, including MAC, Bobbi Brown, and Nars, offer makeup services at their selling locations that were earlier listed. Most of these makeup services are made up of similar systems at all of their different store locations.


For example, let’s refer to Sephora, the mega beauty house, which carries a plethora of popular beauty brands like Kat Von D, Urban Decay and NARS. Makeup services are provided at 706 Sephora stores nationwide and the full cost of a makeover is $50. Where it benefits the customer is not spending the $50 for the application service, but in fact, buying $50 worth of product. Customers purchase a $50 gift card, which gives the customer the opportunity to purchase those items used in the makeover. This is beneficial for event purposes, like prom, where customers can buy products to reapply during their event, like lipstick, blotting papers, or a highlighter. So, Sephora essentially offers this makeup service for free.


Another difference we’re seeing between buying products in beauty supply stores and department stores is the consultation process. When purchasing beauty products in beauty supply stores, rarely do the employees consult you on what you’re buying and color matching. In department stores, consultations about the customer’s skin type, color matching, makeup application and one-on-one teaching is done. During the consultation process, the makeup artist introduces the ideal makeup products, skincare methods and products suitable for the customer. Customers can purchase the product themselves through the information gained through personalized consultation, which leads to the purchase of the product. On the surface, it can be considered a free service, but it is becoming a powerful marketing that raises sales and image.


This is one of the major factors, which separates buying beauty products in beauty supply stores vs. department stores and we’re seeing beauty supply stores take notice of this. With the rise of beauty purchases and drop of hair products, beauty supply stores should be able to provide the minimum service, counseling and makeup services that are provided at beauty department stores.