If buying lipstick and concealer in a drug store is fun, walking into a Sephora store is like finding the holy grail. It’s a truly magical place full of more beauty products than you could ever hope to own or try, and you can literally spend as much time as you want there. Well, okay, the store does close eventually, but besides that, you really can indulge in your beauty product love anytime that you want.
Have you ever thought about what it would be like to work at Sephora? Maybe you’ve been a cashier there in the past (or maybe you work there right now). Maybe you have big makeup artist ambitions and want to work there in that capacity, or maybe you’re just a loyal customer. No matter which category you fall into, you’ve probably wondered about what life is like for the employees. You probably have a lot of questions, like do employees get free makeup (yes, they do) and is there a uniform (yes, again). Want to know even more? How about the rules that everyone has to follow? Yup, there are rules. Read on to find out 15 strict rules you won’t believe Sephora workers have to follow!
15. They Can Not Show Up To Work With No Makeup
There are a bunch of forums out there where girls discuss what it’s like to work at Sephora, and one major theme that comes up is the fact that you really do have to wear makeup on the job. Blush, foundation, and eye makeup seem to be a must.
Of course it makes sense that girls working at Sephora would have to wear beauty products since, well, that’s the entire point. It would be kind of weird if you showed up at one of their stores and everyone was totally bare-faced. It is kind of a strict rule, though, since maybe some girls wear a light amount of makeup on a regular basis and their employers can’t even tell that they’ve got anything on. It could get kind of complicated, right? Who knew there was so much to makeup?!
14. They Have Corporate In Their Ear Telling Them What To Say At All Times
If you’ve gone to a Sephora and have had the cashier talk to you about surveys, that wasn’t something random. Apparently that’s another rule that employees have to follow.
The whole survey thing is probably annoying to some people and seems like no big deal to others. If you’re someone who hates following the rules and is a total rebel, then everything that you have to remember about working at Sephora might feel like a lot. You wouldn’t really want to wear a uniform or be told that you have to wear makeup. And you definitely wouldn’t want to mention a survey all the time. You would just question it all. Of course, it sounds like you would hate this job so maybe this isn’t your dream career…
13. They’re Critiqued On Their Appearance Down To Their Fingers
A forum called Purseblog.com gives a lot of details about working at Sephora and one strict rule is a number of rings that employees are allowed to wear. On each hand. Yes, there’s not only a rule about rings but rings on each hand.
Here are the deets, according to an employee: “Only 2 rings per hand are allowed. There are a LOT of rules when you work there.” There was a super long, serious discussion about this on the forum, and the general feeling was that there are two sides to this issue. One way to look at it is that if you’re going to be an individual, then you should express yourself, and that includes wearing whatever jewelry that you want. The other way to look at it is that it looks silly to wear so many rings. Hmmm
12. Ranking Each Employee Is The Norm
According to a story on Yahoo.com, the employees feel that employees are basically ranked depending on the position. The explanation: “As with any job, there’s a ranking that determines what you do and where you can go (literally)… We have our top manager and then our assistant managers, whom are called CELs. CELs are usually the ones who make sure everything is running smoothly on the black tile (Sephora grounds), while the manager is taking care of things in the office. Managers also have access to certain areas that other Sephora employees are restricted from, such as the stock room and the trash bin room.” Pretty strict if you ask me!
11. It’s Implied That What You Look Like Is More Important Than Anything Else
The same employee who shared the rule about only wearing two rings on each hand also shared that they ended up quitting their job because looks are so important. They said, “That’s ultimately the reason why I left, I hated looking and feeling just like everyone else.”
On the one hand, it sucks to think that employees at any store or company would think that their looks are super important, since that can make people feel kind of bad about themselves and can foster a lot of unhealthy comparisons and competition. But… on the other hand, this is a store that sells beauty products, and, therefore, it only seems logical that employees should look good. Hey, this is just the world that we live in. And, well, if anyone has a problem with it, then maybe it’s not the best job for them.
10. They Don’t Get Compensated For Any Extra Work
Some sales jobs allow employees to make a commission, which is a reason that a lot of people like these types of positions. That’s apparently not the case when you work at this store. There is no commission when you work at Sephora.
As one anonymous person told Msn.com, “There are hourly goals, and toward the middle of the day, if we’re not reaching those goals, you start to feel pressure from the managers.” Usually, people want to reach goals because they’re getting a commission and so they’re totally motivated by money. It does sound kind of strict to still feel that pressure but know that you’re not going to get a commission. There’s nothing that anyone can do about this though, of course, if they want to work at Sephora. This is just their rule and the way that they do things.
9. Being Unique Is Frowned Upon
On the forum MakeupGeek.com, one girl spilled the beans on what you have to look like when you work at Sephora. She said of the uniforms, “It is all black, but the unfortunate part is, there’s no room for individualism like you can have while working at MAC or any beauty counter. They were fine with us wearing black (nice) slacks, black closed toe and heel shoes (glittery toms are the norm at my store), and a nice black fitted T until we were able to get our uniforms (it takes a few weeks). Then we were required to wear the black slacks and jackets provided for us.”
It’s basically the definition of strict to say that employees all have to look the same, and a lot of people feel that because it’s the beauty industry, there should be more of an emphasis on looking unique and creative. That does make sense.
8. Want To Wear A Nail Polish? It MUST Be One That Sephora Sells
Yup, this is an actual rule. So it’s pretty lucky that Sephora sells a lot of nail polish, right?
This is an interesting rule since there’s no question that it’s strict… but at the same time, it kind of makes sense. It makes a massive amount of sense, actually. If employees wear some of the beauty products that are sold in the store and customers think that they look awesome, they might want to ask about the shade or brand, and they might buy some of the products. That’s basically the dream scenario and it probably happens all the time. Like every day. After all, girls love nothing more than getting the chance to talk beauty and makeup with each other, and Sephora provides the perfect place and opportunity.
7. Piercing And Visible Tattoos Can Be Forbidden
According to different forums, including Reddit.com and Makeupgeek.com, there are certain Sephora locations that absolutely don’t allow employees to have piercings and tattoos. Former and current employees seem upset about that since they think that people should be allowed to express themselves however they see fit and that tattoos and piercings are part of that.
However, some locations do seem to allow that stuff, as some employees wrote on the forums and said that their manager didn’t have a problem with it. So it seems like while this is a strict rule, it’s not always enforced. It’s kind of interesting to think about. If this rule isn’t in place at every single store, then honestly, what’s the point? Why is it even necessary in the first place?
6. The Employees Have To ‘Act’ All Day Long
A piece on ’30ontap’ talks about the particular words that Sephora employees use. The store itself (aka where you’re helping customers) is called a “stage.” When you go to the back (aka the secret employee area) it’s “off-stage.” In keeping with the theatre metaphor, the managers of every store are “directors” and all of the other employees are “cast members.”
If that’s not enough, everything is a “world” as well, from the areas of the store that sell perfume to products for the face and skin to, of course, makeup/beauty products. While this is absolutely a strict rule since the company is literally telling employees what words to use, it’s kind of cool, don’t you think? Calling a store a “stage” is just so magical and fun. It sounds so much better.
5. Employees Are Favored Over Others
In the same Msn.com story, that anonymous person shared that although you don’t get paid a commission for working at Sephora, you just might win some kind of prize. Which might be just as good or even better, right?
They said, “There used to be a game where we’d have charts with our name in the back and whoever filled up the chart with power baskets—baskets worth $150 or more—first would win a prize. The cast members responded much better if it was a game-related thing as opposed to ‘I need you to sell this much in this amount of time.'” The prizes could be a European vacation. Although winning prizes sounds super fun, it’s still a fairly strict rule that you have to play a game in order to get a prize or some kind of bonus.
4. They Have To Wear All Black, No Matter What
If you’ve ever been to a Sephora (which of course you have — it just might even be your all-time favorite store, right?!), then you know that employees wear all black.
No, this isn’t a personal choice on behalf of the employees. Everyone has to wear black uniforms. This isn’t the strictest rule that could ever exist, but it’s still pretty strict. You can’t really get harsher than telling employees exactly what they have to wear to work. It’s not just that employees have to wear black clothing and can choose items from their own closets. It’s that they have to wear an actual uniform. Oh well. At least it makes getting ready for work fairly easy since you always know what you’re going to be wearing.
3. Being A New Employee And Going Through The Training Process Is Hell
What kind of training do you do in order to get hired at Sephora? Apparently training takes an entire month, according to some employees. That sounds pretty intense… Although, if you love makeup (and you probably want to love makeup if you’re even thinking about getting a job at Sephora), then it would probably be pretty fun.
You watch a lot of videos as well and some employees have said that you are basically still in training mode all the time. It’s totally possible that this doesn’t happen anymore and that training is faster, because not everyone seems to agree on how long training is, but maybe it depends on what your job is going to be. If you’re going to be a cashier, then you do some “basic” training, and if you’re a makeup artist, then yours is a bit more extensive, which only seems logical.
2. Underage? Don’t Even THINK About Applying
On the forum MakeupGeek.com, one girl who has worked at Sephora for a long time has shared a lot about what it’s like, and she also mentioned that you have to be at least 18 if you’re going to be hired at Sephora. Her explanation: “Sephora will ONLY hire at 18 or older. It’s unfortunate, but it’s due mostly to hours. We are there from anywhere from 6:30am to 2am, so they need people who can work those hours at anytime. Laws where I work prohibit underage workers working past…10 I think? I think it’s just to avoid hassle honestly.”
Although a rule is a rule and saying that you have to be 18 to work somewhere is super strict, at least this is something that makes a lot of sense. Of course, this probably upsets a lot of high school students who would love nothing more than to indulge their love of makeup and get an after-school and weekend job at Sephora. At least it’s something to look forward to?!
1. Employees Are Required To Wear Their Hair Up Like They’re On A Cheer Squad
Now that you know that Sephora employees have to wear black uniforms, makeup, and not much jewelry, do you think that their hairstyles are mandated, too? If you guessed yes, then you’re totally right. That’s exactly what is going on.
You can wear your hair in a bun or ponytail but it seems like you absolutely have to have your hair up. This is a bit of a confusing rule when you stop and really think about it. You can still look really put together with your hair down. Sure, if you have really wild and crazy curly hair or something, maybe it would make sense for you to pull your hair back. But what if you have super straight hair that looks polished all the time?
So what do you think? Are you sending in your resume to Sephora?!
Sources: Yahoo.com, Reddit.com, Makeupgeek.com, Msn.com, 30ontap.com
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