Boss Up Your Beauty Buying Techniques

Make these beauty buying techniques at the cosmetics counter and you’ll never buy the wrong product again.

buying techniques: woman having her makeup applied at a beauty counter by a professional makeup artist.

Do you love going to the beauty counter? If your answer is an affirmative no, then it’s likely you haven’t been looked after by trained professionals or you may have walked straight into the lion’s den without considering the risk to your wallet. Beauty counters are places that should leave you with a bounce in your step, not a chink in your armour. If you’ve been put off by your previous experiences, here’s our step by step guide to using our beauty buying techniques that’ll help you get it right the next time you visit your favourite brands in the store!

Buying techniques before Your Visit

Know your problem (so they can solve it)

woman touching her face whilst looking into a handheld mirror

Why are you visiting the counter? What do you want to achieve? This is your opportunity to get tailored advice, so make sure you direct the interaction to get what you want. For example, if you’re looking for a new foundation, have a think about how the last one let you down and make a non-negotiable product performance list before turning up at the counter. Preparation is key.

Know your budget (so you’re not seduced beyond it)

Upselling is an inevitable part of your experience; remember the person you are seeking help from is a sales assistant and they will most likely be working on commission.

buying techniques: close up of a woman holding an open purse, showing the money inside.

Every product you purchase should have value and use in your life. What’s the point in buying another palette that’s just going to sit in your collection and you will never use? Avoid the seduction into buying across the brand unless the product recommendations align with your list or they solve a big beauty problem. And as for “too good to miss” offers – you’ll know when you come across one of those when you have zero internal debate, it’s just a quick – “yes, please put it in my bag now” (because you’re thinking someone must have made a big mistake), and that rarely happens. To anyone. Got it? Just say no, thank you!

Suggested Article: How to Build an Affordable Makeup Collection on a Budget.

Make a shopping list (your mission is to stick to it)

Now you know your budget, what are you spending it on? How many products do you want? What brand are you heading to first? Where are you going to invest your time? If you’re set on one brand – make an appointment first.

buying techniques: a woman, close up on her hands, writing a list on a sheet of paper.

Buying Techniques during your Visit

How to spot a 5-star beauty consultant:

  • They present themselves well – if they can correctly use cosmetics to enhance their natural beauty then it’s likely they can do the same for you.
  • The consultant makes you feel comfortable and encourage you to browse.
  • The consultant gives you more compliments than criticism – you want to be hearing what’s great about your face not how they can change it or why certain products won’t work for you.
  • You are asked questions about your lifestyle – to recommend the right products for you, your consultant must find out how makeup and beauty products feature in your life. They need to know how much time you have to get ready, if you wear makeup every day, what makeup you currently own, what your existing skills are like and if you have an active lifestyle etc.
  • They recommend competitors – Beauty professionals know the best products and if they are happy to tell you their competitor makes a better one – you’ve struck gold. Take their advice.

Alarm bell comments you may hear include:

  • “For best results, you need to use this product with the matching blah blah” (cover your ears and stop listening. Avoid buying across brand).
  • “This will remove wrinkles” (run now! You’re smarter than that. This person will tell you anything for a sale and knows nothing about skin biology).
  • “I don’t normally work on this counter, sorry” (then there’s no help for you here – move on).
  • “If you buy 4 products, you’ll get a free gift” (You’re not a moth and it’s not a flame, so stop! It’s probably just another makeup bag you don’t need and tiny samples you’ll probably never use. Stay focused on your mission).

woman looking away from the camera, with her hand/palm raised in a rude gesture.

If they are rude, simply walk away.

Never tolerate anyone being rude to you and don’t engage in negative interactions. Rude staff may ruin a lovely shopping day in seconds if you let them. Walk away and spend your hard-earned cash elsewhere. Consider giving their head office an email with feedback about your experience. Also, never be afraid to leave the counter for any reason! If you want to go, say thank you and walk away!

Ask for samples

It’s totally acceptable to ask for a sample of a product you are debating whether to buy or not and they should happily give it to you. It isn’t acceptable to go around counters looking for freebies with no intention of buying. It’s a two-way relationship.

rihanna fenty makeup samples with mini brush, all contained in a white card leaflet upon a fluffy material.

Suggested Article: The Cheapest Beauty Subscription Boxes You Need to Sign Up To Right Now.

Buying Techniques after Your Visit

If you’re not happy with your experience or purchases for whatever reasons, it’s probably best not to go back to the counter and instead deal with the head office if you have a complaint. Check their returns policy and get their contact details from their website. Brands take customer care seriously and want to know where they go wrong – so, they will happily deal with your issue. It’s especially important to inform manufacturers of allergic reactions or any skin irritation you experience after using their products.

Conversely, if you’ve had a positive experience and love your products – why not let them know how well they’ve served you? Get in their inner circle, follow them on social media and subscribe to their emails. Get to know exactly what they can offer you and take advantage of promotions and free advice, you’ll also keep ahead of trends being informed by industry leaders.

a makeup artist applying makeup to a client.

Let us keep you informed by subscribing to our beauty feed. On signing up, you’ll get a free copy of our “Feel-Good Goals” workbook – the ultimate guide to up-levelling your life in all areas.

We’ll leave you with something interesting to consider. As a result of the current national lockdown, brands are moving their consultations services online. It’s likely that if successful, beauty consultations with your favourite brands in the future will be entirely virtual! Imagine the colour matching technology to come!

Talking of the lockdown – have you seen our lockdown lifehacks and list of 50 things to do when self-isolating Enjoy!

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