If you didn’t already know, Sephora has opened its online store regionally on 1 Feb 2016. This is, I believe in Malaysia, Singapore and Hong Kong for now. The inclusion of Hong Kong surprised me, as Sephora stores had opened, and closed down there many years ago. The Sephora Australia online store launched late last year, to a bit of brou-ha-ha.
You see, what happened was that some time last year, LVMH (parent company of Sephora) bought over online shopping store, Luxola. Most of you would be familiar with Luxola, I’m sure. They are an online store based in Singapore, but which quickly spread its wings regionally and is quite popular. Luxola offered many brands that were hard to find within the region, with very attractive prices and generous discounts. I’d never purchased from them (personal vendetta) but I know many had, and were loyal to the store, and its discounts.
So, when I first learned of LVMH’s acquisition of Luxola, I had an inkling of what was to come. I therefore, wasn’t too surprised when Sephora announced that they were going to have online stores locally. It did make me wonder if, knowing what I know, whether I’d shop at Sephora online. After all, I already do a lot of online shopping.
The Luxola-Sephora hybrid store conundrum
While there was a lot of speculation about how the Luxola-Sephora transition would happen, it all became quite clear on 1 February, when the Sephora online stores went live. There was an email sent out to Luxola customers informing them of the switch over, and offering some form of discounts and conversion of points (I’m a little hazy on details, so if you have shopped on the site before, you will have gotten your email and be clearer about things)
However, when I checked out the Sephora online store out of curiousity, I was rather surprised to see that it was pretty much a rebranded Luxola site.
There were some new brands included, which are carried by Sephora locally e.g. Nudestix, Tarte and Marc Jacobs Beauty, but in the main, the brands carried by Luxola were still present. This should technically please most people, except it didn’t.
Many brands sold at Sephora stores aren’t available online e.g. NYX, Clinique, Estee Lauder, Dior, Caudalie, Too Faced, Shiseido, Guerlain etc. The online store is essentially a Luxola store with Sephora branding. Brands sold on Luxola aren’t available in Sephora stores. It was a bit of a strange mash-up, if I’m to be honest. I can buy Alpha-H on the Sephora online store, but I can’t buy it in the physical store. I can shop Guerlain and the magical Meteorites in store, but not online. It boggles my mind and begs the question why the lack of standardization of brands available.
Perhaps it’ll iron itself out, perhaps it won’t, but I know it didn’t sit well with those who were hoping for a proper online store with a proper representation of products sold at Sephora stores.
Stop! Price hike!
Also, with the change of ownership and rebanding came a price – literally. Prices of items literally shot up and through the roof! I had readers complain on my Instagram post, about prices of items they regularly buy on Luxola suddenly becoming much more expensive than they used to be. Zoeva brushes in particular, were suddenly very pricey in comparison to what they were before.
I also had people on Facebook tell me that they had such bad service with Luxola’s delivery service that they would rather just buy from the Sephora store now, since they’re one, rather than from the online store. Also, Luxola had an infamous problem with products being out of stock all the time, and it appears to still be the case.
Sephora online Shipping logistics don’t make sense
The online Sephora stores in this region will all ship from Singapore – which defies logic when there are stores in each of the countries (except Hong Kong). In fact, this was what irked Australian shoppers. Why were their Sephora goodies shipped all the way from Singapore to Australia, when there was a store in Sydney?! Similarly with us here in Malaysia – why ship from Singapore, when there are at least 8 Sephora stores in Malaysia at last count! While I understand how logistics and warehousing work, it still didn’t make sense to me. At least for Australia.
So logistically, it will take a few days (Sephora says 2-10 working days) for an item bought on the local Sephora website to reach your doorstep, as opposed to instant gratification buying the same item in store. Prices are the same after all. Not only that, there isn’t even next day delivery offered, which I might expect, if I did not know that the products will be shipped from Singapore. Malaysia isn’t very large – it is actually possible to send things overnight within the country – I’ve done it with the most basic of service, Poslaju.
So, with no extra benefits shopping at the Sephora store online as opposed to shopping in store, except for brands available only online (which brings me to my first point) I suppose the primary reason anyone would use the online store, would be if there was no Sephora store in your town. That is, if you didn’t mind that the online store was not really representative of what you could get at an actual Sephora store.
So that’s where I am at this time. I love shopping online, and I do so often. But because I had bad blood with the previous owners, I’m not likely to take my custom to this new Luxola-Sephora hybrid online store. That’s my personal beef. Does it make me a little biased? Yeah, I’m sure it does but hey, what does Sephora care? My business is but a drop in the figurative ocean!
Further, if it’s true that the prices were adjusted significantly to match in store prices or raise the prices (which I expected, as Luxola was very competitively priced before) then that would be another reason I wouldn’t shop there – ease of access to Sephora stores and alternatives. There are so many Sephora stores in town, you’re never too far away from one if you REALLY need something. And you don’t have to wait days or weeks for your purchase to arrive. As for other brands, I could just get them online elsewhere.
On the other hand, I can see how this might be exciting to those who do not have access to a physical store, or if you are in Hong Kong or other parts of Australia, where there is no store anyway. Something is better than nothing!
Where are you on this? Are you likely to be shopping at the new Sephora online stores or are you smarting over the switch?
I’d probably be blacklisted by Sephora over this, but heck. It’s not like they were terribly friendly with me to start! LOL! So, while I will still pop by the physical Sephora stores, I’ll be giving the online store a wide berth and take my online custom elsewhere. If I’m going to wait for days or weeks for a purchase to arrive, I might as well buy something that comes from further away! 😛 What about you?
54 comments ... Read or JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Ya Paris, I noted that too after I caved and snooped around the site yesterday. Not happy at all at the back story now that you mention it. Why wait for goods to come from Singapore when I can get it in-store? They need to get their act and products together!
Paris B says
I think the separation of website and store is a little strange, if I’m to be honest. While I understand that the online store makes many people happy, who may not otherwise have access to the physical store, the dichotomy just bugs me. Really, I don’t think they thought things through.
This could be long so bear with me.
1. First of all, like you mentioned, the shipping of products. It does not make any sense at all. Why would I want to wait for products to be shipped from Singapore (8 hours of flying away) when there’s a physical store 30mins drive from me i.e. in the CBD of Melbourne? Likewise, there’s a physical store in Sydney as well.
2. Secondly, when Sephora Australia launched, their facebook page was littered with information of the Singaporean store locations. It was like they “forgot” about us and just lumped us in with the Singaporean page. There was no information at all about store locations and opening hours of the Australian stores. I mean, when you want to launch and make your presence known, don’t do it half-heartedly on social media. It will cost. I took my beef to Twitter and tweeted them. Of course there was no response, why would there be?
3. Service in the store. When I was in Sydney last year, I made it a point to visit the Sephora store. It was kinda pathetic to be honest. Most beautyholics would be used to the wonders of Mecca Cosmetica. Service is friendly, there’s never pressure to purchase and samples are always generous. The staff at Sephora on the other hand were bored. When asked for help to pick a Tarte blush colour, I was told,”Whichever you want. It doesn’t matter.” I was appalled.
I can only guess the terrible attitude boils down to the fact that Australian consumers are so starved for Sephora that when Sephora finally landed, they thought they could do anything and treat us like dirt. Well, guess what? I’m sticking to Mecca.
It’s local. It’s Australian. The prices are fair. The loyalty system is top notch. The delivery is awesome (purchased on Monday, arrived on Tuesday), the service impeccable, the selection of niche brands are truly niche (unlike Sephora’s claims of niche brands. I mean, really? Estee Lauder?) but most importantly, I tell myself I’m supporting the local economy.
So Sephora or Luxola can seriously stuff it. I’ve been told repeatedly that Sephora has opened up in Melbourne Central. I’d always reply,”And?” and return to Mecca.
Until and unless they get their act together and stop acting like we owe them a living, there’s really no need for me to step into Sephora. Most of what I need (Estee Lauder?) can be picked up from Myer or Mecca if it was a truly niche brand.
Paris B says
I’m all for options and competition. To be honest, I didn’t think Sephora would survive here, so I’m actually surprised that they have lasted this long, and have opened so many stores here. Then again, I also realise that we don’t really have options. The cloest would have been Sasa and you know how what it’s like shopping in there. As for their logistics, while I get that they want to keep everything centralised, it just boggles the mind. It’s not like Net-A-Porter, that doesn’t have a physical store, so they can centralise their stores to different core countries. Sephora has stores in most of the countries they ship to. Then again, there’s no love lost between me and Luxola/Sephora so I’m not too hot up about it. As far as I’m concerned, I have options and I’ll use them 😉
Yes! I was thinking getting the liquid gold for 156 and whaddya know it suddenly shot up to 176 yesterday.
I was thinking omg is this because bad currency exchange rate now and was deflated.
I should have just bought it*cries*
Paris B says
It’s interesting, Jue because I see it’s now RM174 – now how would you have felt had you bought it at RM176? I think this whole yoyo-ing of prices on their website is terrible for the consumer who may not have noticed what was happening. While I personally buy my Alpha H from UK sites they are more expensive due to the exchange rate (unless there are good discount codes) so you might have to eventually suck it up and get it from them 😛
The price hike was downright ridiculuous, especially for the Zoeva brushes which I love, and I kid you not, it irked me for days! One of Zoeva’s face brush was initially around RM70 which I was planning to buy soon, has now shot up to almost RM90.
Would I continue to purchase them? Maybe, but only for Zoeva brushes and that’s because I have no idea where else I could purchase them.
As for other brands, I am better off making the trip to the physical store. Some of the brands (such as TheBalm) you can find cheaper at other stores (namely Sasa).
Paris B says
There are 2 sites you can buy Zoeva from – the official site (from Germany) and Love Makeup (UK based) but because they are listed in USD and GBP respectively, it might work out a little pricey, as their shipping is also a little pricey. I bought mine from Love Makeup a while ago, when they ran a free shipping promotion. I am not otherwise familiar with their prices pre-Sephora price hike, so it’s hard for me to judge. I did hear a lot of complaints before this that Luxola would delay in sending packages or send incomplete packages or just not have stock for months on end, so really, I don’t know how all that is, with the switch over. Hopefully better 😛
Personally I used to be a loyal shopper of Luxola, I bought from them at least 10 times and never had an issue with the shipping. they normally arrive in 1-3 working days. Concerning Zoeva I am also disheartened with the steep price hike. I bought 2 palettes from Luxola which were RM80 each are now selling at RM135 in Sephora if I’m not mistaken. a price hike of Rm50+ cannot justify the weak ringgit and it’s not like the will reduce the price when economy gets better.
As for some brands such as Urban Decay, I’ve compared Sephora prices and the UD outlet in KLCC, Naked Palette is exactly the same RM215 (used to be 175+ a year back or so tho). I checked the UD website and prices are relatively fair with the current conversion rate.
As Sephora is the only official supplier of certain brands in Malaysia, it is difficult to find it elsewhere locally. Conclusion: they’re monopolising the market (especially Zoeva) and would boycot the products that I find unreasonably marked up
Paris B says
I’ve heard about Zoeva and the rise in prices in that brand. While I concur with you that Sephora has monopoly over certain brands, I’d personally just look elsewhere if the prices do not justify the means. UD in Sephora is supplied by UD Malaysia so the prices in the boutique will be the same as that in Sephora. I haven’t paid a lot of attention to the brand, because it’s not one that really attracts me, but it’s good to know the mark up isn’t as drastic as something like Hourglass is 😛
I shopped at Luxola now and then (when there is very attractive store-wide discount and the product I want is not “out of stock”). Their price is much more competitive comparatively. I have considered to unsubscribe the newsletter but then I thought I’ll keep it for the time being to see what promotions they are going to offer. If they are not as good, why bother?
Paris B says
I have to admit the Luxola sales and discounts were very attractive. So many hard to find brands were actually very affordable. Now, absolutely not LOL That said, who knows what’s to come. I don’t personally care for the site or ex-company so I won’t bother with them, but it’s interesting how so many people are so angry at the inconsistent pricing!
I used to buy from Luxola, and do not foresee myself buying from the new website. The price hike is just ridiculous! I still recall when Luxola Singapore used to sell Sigma and Zoeva on discount. Then they became non-discountable. Then they came with a delivery surcharge unless you hit a minimum amount. At that point I stopped shopping with them! So, no, I’m not going back ( I’ve since switched to Beautybay for my online buying needs for makeup, and no regrets!)
Paris B says
Gosh, I didn’t know that about Sigma and Zoeva brushes not being available on discount! I always thought that it’s all anyone ever bought from Luxola LOL! Rather, that’s what I hear people buying all the time. I had shopped Beautybay before quite a while ago. They used to offer free shipping but I can’t remember why I stopped. Maybe because one of my packages took ages to get here LOL
It’s not just the price hikes. The points system also sucks – instead of RM416.67, you would now have to spend RM750 to reach 250 points because it’s now RM3 to a point and not RM5 for 3 points. And I’m one of those people who just buys during the members’ sale and/or whenever something runs out, and not some people who spend 3, 4 digits there.
That said, haven’t bought anything at Luxola for almost a year before this; what with the constant out of stock BS, and I didn’t really need anything. Other than that, I haven’t had problems with Luxola, so whatever.
I suppose it’s great if you don’t live near one or more Sephora stores, but really, like this tak payah lah. Give the Sephora personal shoppers some business lah.
Paris B says
That’s excellent research on the points, Synical. I think it might have been wiser for the people at Luxola and Sephora to have effected a gradual phasing out of Luxola benefits, instead of making such a big jump, while changing prices willy nilly and then hoping to rectify things as and when they are called out. As it stands, there’s still one palette on there by theBalm that’s going for RM350 – I read it used to be RM79. And they still haven’t rectified that – maybe because it’s not a popular brand/product? Still, there’s no excuses and no excuses for the changes in prices simply because there was a name change in the store (because that’s all there really is!)
Evan Chang says
Honestly, it just made me stop buying from them online immediately. I mean COME ON! Sephora obviously is playing dirty, downright, selfish, stupidly dirty. But to put up an online store that just is a rebranded Luxola website is.. is.. is… I’m speechless!! (Wow that’s a first)
It just made me lost interest in Sephora. NOT A FAN!
Paris B says
heh, I suppose you could just buy in store? I think the whole online blitz wasn’t well thought out. Sure, it would make many people happy – those who don’t have a Sephora store nearby, but really. What were they thinking alienating Luxola fans?
Unless they clean up their act, I’ve no plans on shopping on the new site at all. They should just iron out all the minor issues and ensure all brands available in-stores can also be bought online. Why launch when such basic standard aren’t there yet? And it doesn’t make any sense to mark up the prices of the Zoeva so much overnight. Out of curiosity I checked the Zoeva site, you can buy the set brushes + international shipping at a much cheaper cost compared to the Sephora site.
Paris B says
Thanks for highlighting that the Zoeva site now works out to be more affordable, Sara! I’d been wanting to get more Zoeva brushes, but because I didn’t want to shop at Luxola, I had no other way to haha! now I do, and a good excuse to as well! But yes, they definitely did not think things through properly, what with the random price hikes and glitches. I wasn’t amused and I’d have been less amused if I’d been a loyal Luxola customer before 😛
Victoria Shanti says
A very good piece and you certainly nailed it on the head :-). I live and work in the heart of KL and there is actually 2 Sephora stores near to my working place so I very much doubt I will purchase anything on this site. I bought Alpha Liquid Gold, Vichy Toner (which has been out of stock for more than a year), a Maybelline lipstick (which you cannot get in Guardian or Sasa), the RT blush brush and that is basically it. Was quite curious about the Zoeva brushes but they have marked it up so much now its no longer worth buying.
I do wonder who is their target market when buying the Luxola site as it totally does not make sense if you are going to make your Luxola loyal customers so unhappy with the price hike. I have to say this is such a strange acquisition and as one of your readers said on Instagram, it is probably to just buy out competition. LOL.
Paris B says
Thanks Victoria – seems to have ruffled feathers eh? 😉 I have a couple of Zoeva brushes (I bought them from Love Makeup – a UK site but shipping is expensive) and they’re actually quite nice for the price. I’ve been told by Sara, above that buying from the Zoeva website itself seems to be cheaper than on Sephora so it’s worth taking a look or hunting down some discount codes 😉 I did wonder too about those loyal Luxola customers – I’d have been royally pissed had I been one, but now I’m just kind of pissed on their behalf haha! 😀
When you say that Sephora may blacklist you and you aren’t afraid. *Stands up and claps*
Well I can’t say anything about the situation other than “Is that real Sephora?” I thought they only had shitty marketing and offers in Mexico (if you could only see the webpage). So now I’m wondering why it is so big? The exclusive brands?
It’s a shame that we don’t have another store like Mecca in Australia.
Paris B says
Haha I’m quite sure they’ve already blacklisted me Efrain 😉 But thank you anyway! 😀 Yes, it is the real Sephora, except in a very messed up sort of way. I think it’s actually the internet that’s made Sephora the popular store that it is because people associate it with the US site. Then, they realise it’s nothing like what they get in the US! 😛 I wish we had competition here too, but there wasn’t before and there isn’t likely to be any now that Sephora is here 🙁
bizarrely, my HG PTR serum is RM 90 cheaper online, so I am going to shop online there for some items that are worth buying, some prices are kept the same as in store to be fair lah, some are just hiked like there’s no tomorrow..yesterday, i saw the cover fx custom cover drops for RM 700 but they fixed the price today..i feel like i am being played as a consumer..
Paris B says
Good point about knowing your prices! Did you mean that the online price is cheaper than in store? That would have been weird (or a glitch so quickly buy before they realise it! 😉 ) As for the adjustment of prices to match the store prices, I expected that to be honest. Hence the outcry about price hikes of brands that are available in the Sephora stores. But yes, the theBalm eye palette I spotted at RM350 is still up and not price adjusted to what it was, which I hear is RM79. Now imagine someone who unwittingly paid more than Chanel prices for a theBalm eyeshadow palette – it’s irresponsible, that’s what I think this is.
Now I’m curious abt your beef with LVMH… what happened?
Paris B says
It wasn’t with LVMH, but with Luxola 🙂 Basically, I was very poorly treated by the then owners when they wanted to introduce it to the Malaysian market, when I was faced with a situation outside my control. I’ve blacklisted them ever since
I was actually really excited that Sephora went online. There isn’t a Sephora near me, unless it’s 200km away, so yes, this is exciting news. And you’re right to say, even though they don’t offer all brands, there’s still something, and it’s better than nothing. I’ve never been an avid shopper on Luxola, so I didn’t notice the price hike either. However, I have purchased some Zoeva brushes from them before, and the prices do look higher now. There’s also Burberry Beauty online now, which I think is pretty cool. You guys in KL have nearly everything within grasp, so I can definitely understand how this is not appealing.
To answer your question, yes, I will buy from the Sephora online store. However, if and when Sephora opens a store here (apparently it’s in March, but I’ll believe it when I see the physical store actually open!), I’d of course purchase from the store. Instant gratification!
Paris B says
Ah Sephora has confirmed the opening of the Ipoh store so there’s good reason for instant gratification now! 😉 I did notice Burberry being sold online which, like everything else, will be great for fans of the brand or those who don’t have access to the counters or stores where the items they want can be found. In that sense, the online site was a smart move. But the whole hiccup with the yoyo-ing prices didn’t really instil a lot of confidence, that’s for sure!
Sam Still Reading says
The Aussie site is shocking and there’s so many people who have complained about the shipping and poor customer service. Like LeGeeque, I’ll stick with Mecca. I can’t fault their online service (once they rang me to say nobody was home and could the courier drop it off somewhere else – same day, no charge). There’s only one grumpy store I’ve been in (which unfortunately is my local, but good for swatching then ordering online), So many things are out of stock at Sephora Australia…they send a lot of discounts, but every time I click, the things I want are never there…
Paris B says
I think you guys in Australia actually have options – Adorebeauty has good brands as well, and they’re Australian, like Mecca. We didn’t have that option, before Sephora came in so it naturally filled a void. It’s the same way that Sephora was drummed out of Hong Kong years ago – they just couldn’t survive the competition! I honestly don’t understand how Sephora can justify shipping items to Australia from Singapore. And it’s not like they’re even that cheap to start with 😛
Over at the startup/venture capitalist scene last year during the takeover, there was a lot of interest since Luxola is one of the biggest buyouts ever in Singapore. The sale price was estimated at less than SGD 50 million. The conclusion was that Sephora wanted a ready made online solution for their products. Luxola wasn’t in direct competition with Sephora as they sold more niche labels.
Luxola never really received much funding and was never really profitable. In order to carry all these new-to-market labels, they probably had to do a lot of liaising with foreign contacts. As a small company, its really not easy to manage all those labels and individual product units.
With 8 months since the sale, it’s understandable that they don’t have a full selection of Sephora products if you think about the absorption into the SEA distribution arm of a multinational chain. But it isn’t very responsible of a major brand like Sephora to launch with such a mismatched product selection with the intention to fix things as they go along like a startup. Luxola-only products may not have the demand or cachet for in store sale, but Sephora-only products definitely have the demand for online sale.
However, there is the possibility that the deals that Sephora and Luxola made with the brands were only for their existing retail channels, just like how Netflix can’t get some shows in Asia since the rights are with other companies. And with only 3 stores in Australia after a year and a half, Sephora is never going to have warehouse operations there anytime soon. With Luxola and Sephora SEA both based in Singapore, it probably makes more sense for all operations to be based here.
Paris B says
The business end aside, I do think Sephora-Luxola knew and should have known what they were getting into. It would only make logical sense, when a website of a physical store is launched, to have brands online that are also available in store and vice versa. Like with the Sephora site overseas, they do list some items as being online exclusives – that’s warranted. Some other online stores have online exclusive brands. Again, that’s warranted. But to not state so is, I feel misleading the consumer who doesn’t know better. I read of people who traipsed in store to look for brands they saw on the online site and didn’t find it. That’s just disappointment all around. I don’t think it’ll be accurate to say that Luxola wasn’t profitable. LVMH would not have bought a business that isn’t profitable. They were, just perhaps not making the big bucks, the way they did when they were eventually bought out. Also, when a business is bought over, so are the rights associated to it, unless the other brands revoke it, which I haven’t seen happening. Brands didn’t drop out, they added them e.g. Burberry and Urban Decay was added to the online store.
In the end, what I feel Luxola should have done is gradually transitioned and phased out their loyalty points and revised their prices before making the switch to being named Sephora. As it stands, they were still giving out their usual heavy discounts until the very end, while teasing a change. All in all, I just feel that consumers got a raw deal. That said, I doubt any of what I say really matters because Sephora, being the behemoth they are, will have their loyal fans as well 🙂
I’m not in Malaysia, but with the Canadian Sephora, I’ve only purchased online a few times. There are a few things that are slightly cheaper online, but overall they’re almost exactly the same.
The reason I enjoy shopping online is generally, when I go to a Sephora store, I’m always ignored by the sales associates. I could make eye contact with one, and they would still turn away and assist someone else.
It’s been better now (I guess I don’t dress like a student as much anymore) but I still enjoy shopping online. The store is always way too packed and it takes too long to wait to cash out.
Also, not to mention, if you spend over $35CAD, they have good beauty deals that I can’t receive in store. I still stop by in store if I want to check out a swatch, but if I could order online, I would.
Paris B says
I remember there was some kerfuffle with Sephora Canada too a while ago. Something about brands being pulled? I actually enjoy shopping online, as I tend to get very overwhelmed in a Sephora store, every single time. So, unless I enter with the intent to buy something, I usually walk out empty handed. I actually appreciate not having SA around, but I can understand how sometimes, it’s just necessary and poor customer service always sucks. For now, I think the online Sephora here has a ways to go. Perhaps, eventually it’ll iron out its creases but till then, and while I’m left smarting with the knowledge of what it used to be known as, I’m not likely to be a customer 😛
The prices are ridiculous. I even asked Sephora on their instagram about the sharp price hike for the products on the online store. Of course it was not answered. I will just go to the store and get what i need or better still just go to the other brands stores in the mall. I will need to be desperate to want to shop at sephora online.
Paris B says
I think they were giving out stock answers about price realignment until people told them to just stuff it LOL! So they just stopped answering comments on that. Not right, I feel. Then again, as I’ve not shopped at Luxola before this, I don’t feel that it’s a loss to me. But perhaps you might change your mind in a while? 🙂
yaaaa too bad zoeva brushh price gone up really bad!!! and my luxola points was disappeared as well…. urghhh.
Paris B says
I read about the disappearing Luxola points! That wasn’t nice of them to remove it. Did they not convert it into Sephora points for you?
Wow Paris! I wrote about this which is just a tip of the iceberg, but yours is very long! Another perspective, yay! To add to your statement, Luxola used to provide service to Australia, New Zealand, Singapore, Malaysia, Philippines, Hongkong, Indonesia and Thailand. All the countries have been converted to Sephora except for Thailand and they share the same design from Sephora.com. They all went live last Feb 1 (although there was already Sephora Australia before) and yes its funny you pointed out Hongkong because, in the Philippines, there’s no Sephora store yet but I’m hoping they do open one because it’s badly needed there!
As people have been pointing out, the complaint was the price (eg. Zoeva and Beauty blender). I don’t know if you noticed but after checking each of the stores online, they experienced a “price discrepancy bug” which was very evident in sephora.my. I only gave Tarte and Becca as an example when I published my post but, after the “boring tech” stuff, I did find more. I also tried to read comments in facebook and their response to the price was “realignment of prices” between sephora online and retail which to my geeky mind doesn’t explain why a Tarte blush is priced at RM350 hahaha, I could buy a luxury lipstick for that! Surprisingly, I got an email that they’re still working things out and by now they’ve fixed that blush brush; they should have a tech maintenance guy ready for all sites (they’re a global brand).
I’m still 50/50 because I feel it was rushed and yes you’re correct, things shipping from Singapore? Imagine if you’re from Australia, lol! But as I said, I’m really hoping for a Sephora Philippines hehehe
Paris B says
Hiya Bee 🙂 It’s interesting to read your viewpoint too! 🙂 I admit that perhaps I was a little biased but the price debacle was really something. That said, I fully agree with you that having access to “some” Sephora brands online where there are no stores or where people have no access to a nearby store is definitely a boon. Why shouldn’t it be right? 😀 But I do think that they could have implemented the switch better, and even made it a point to ensure that the brands available are more streamlined both for stores and online. Otherwise, this looks a little half-hearted, just making a mini Sephora hybrid out of a Luxola site, with higher pricing.