One of the ways I try a lot of products without spending a ton of money is by sampling the hell out of anything that looks interesting. I have no qualms about asking for samples in-store. Sephora in particular has made it easy to try before you buy, both by encouraging in-store play with products and by giving generous amounts of samples with purchases. You can also use your Sephora points to buy select deluxe samples and full-size products at any time. And until 11:59 PDT Saturday night, Sephora is having a Beauty Insider Appreciation Event where you can earn up to four times as many points as usual on all purchases. So here’s what to buy while it’s going to pay off in extra points—and here’s how to maximize your sample haul now and with every purchase.
One of the ways I get more samples is through Sephora’s website. I almost never buy in-store at Sephora, and neither do many of their employees. Several of them have told me, “We all buy online,” because the bonus incentives to do so are bigger. Here’s how you can get the most out of those Sephora online purchases:
- Join the Sephora Beauty Insider program if you haven’t already. Those points add up, and you get free products on your birthday.
- With every online order of $25 or more, Sephora gives you three free samples. Plus they have codes for bonus products with every $25+ purchase. BOOKMARK THIS PAGE.
- Split your orders into separate ones that are as close to $25 each as possible, to maximize your samples and bonuses, as you get three free samples and one deluxe sample (with promo code) with every purchase.
- Buy skincare from the Travel Size section of Sephora’s site. You can get very modestly priced products from premium lines in smaller volumes. So instead of paying $63 for a giant cleanser you might not like, you can pay $14 and use it for a month to see how it suits you.
If you want to take advantage of the Sephora Beauty Insider event, here are 10 skincare products worth investing in during this promotion:
- Algenist Genius Ultimate Anti-Aging Melting Cleanser—one of the silkiest, most fragrant cleansers on the market
- Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Daily Face Peel—the gold standard for daily chemical exfoliation
- Eve Lom Morning Time Cleanser—a luxurious balm cleanser that pulls double-duty as a soothing balm for irritated skin
- Kate Somerville Goat Milk Moisturizing Cream—a superb day moisturizer for dry or combination skin
- May Coop Raw Sauce—one of the most pleasant essences Asian skincare has to offer
- Peter Thomas Roth Retinol Fusion PM Night Serum—use retinol or your face will fall off; start here
- REN Glycolic Renewal Radiance Mask—a pampering yet effective exfoliating mask
- Sunday Riley Good Genes—you will feel this lactic acid serum start working as soon as you apply it
- Tarte BB Tinted Treatment 12-Hour Primer Broad Spectrum SPF 30 Sunscreen—light SPF with pretty decent coverage and a smooth look for even the most humid days
- Tata Harper Refreshing Cleanser—she makes some of the best cleansers on the market, but they’re not cheap, so now’s the time to buy
Jackie Danicki created one of the first and most popular beauty blogs in 2004, and has consulted some of the world’s most iconic brands on digital content strategy and innovation. Jackie blogs at http://burnedoutbeauty.com, and you can find her onTwitter, Instagram, and Snapchat as @burnedoutbeauty.