This wouldn't be the first time I'm kvetching about Sephora. Maybe it's my fault for still occasionally shopping there, because it certainly looks like the company has lost interest in me as a costumer. I can still remember that ten years ago Sephora was a lot more fabulous. The stores (at least the ones I frequented in NYC and NJ) were better maintained, the brands offered were more interesting and even the perfume selection was better- more prestige/luxury houses, less mass market. They used to offer the entire range of Cartier perfumes, for example, not just the latest/bigger sellers. There was more Chanel (including makeup!) and Guerlain parfum extraits- can you imagine buying L'Heure Bleue at a Sephora store today?
There were also smaller high quality makeup brands that weren't necessarily geared towards teenagers. I first discovered Skin by Alison Raffaele at Sephora. The same goes for Paula Dorf makeup, Becca Cosmetics and Anna Sui nail polish. All of them are no longer available there, and the bad news keep coming: Both Cargo and Laura Geller makeup brands are being withdrawn from Sephora. You'd be able to find them on QVC, but seriously, I'm not a fan.
But beyond the kiddy brands, the disappearance of old favorites and the clueless SAs (what else is new?), the biggest turn off is the state of the makeup displays. It's the same in every store I visited over the last year or so, from Paramus to the brand new store on Times Square. Testers are broken, missing and dirty. The general feel is that you're going to get a serious case of cooties if you touch anything there, and that, my dear LVMH friends, is the total opposite of luxury.
Photo by me.