Sephora Confirms It Can Ban You From Making Returns

Sephora has long been the mecca for our hair, skin and makeup needs, with plenty of benefits to boot. The arguably biggest perk is its flexible return policy, which allows you to return products–both new and used–within 60 days of purchase, in addition to getting an exchange for anything (in that same time frame) without a receipt.

It’s truly a godsend for anyone who just doesn’t have time to read reviews or sample the product beforehand. And although it’s assumed that most of us are respectful of the return rules, time has taught the Sephora higher-ups that there are just as many shoppers taking advantage and doing the most, like returning twice as much as they purchased.

For that reason, a service called “The Retail Equation” is being used to vet the bad seeds, so they can be banned from doing just that in the future. According to the “TRE” website, its specific purpose is to “identify the 1 percent of consumers whose behaviors mimic return fraud or abuse.”

A Wall Street Journal feature (by way of Racked), says TRE does this by tracking customer returns and behavior via driver’s license and calculating a score based on frequency of returns, cost of said return and a few other factors. Once the shopper reaches a certain number set by the retailer, a ban can be authorized.

In a statement to Racked, Sephora confirmed its participation and emphasized why it’s joined over 34,000 other stores (including Best Buy and Victoria’s Secret) to use the TRE system:

“Sephora is dedicated to providing all of our customers with an excellent shopping experience. We make every effort to accommodate returns, but a small fraction of customers take advantage of our policy, in many cases returning more than twice as much merchandise as they purchase. This limits product selection and unfairly impacts other clients. When we identify excessive return patterns, we notify those customers that we may limit future returns or exchanges if no proof of purchase is provided.”

It’s long been rumored that Sephora has always tracked customer behavior, but now they’ve got an official system backing up their practices. This is sure to ruffle a few feathers for frequent shoppers, so if you’re on the fence about whether to buy something or not, remind yourself of this not-so-secret return tracker, too.

20 Under-$20 Foundations for Coverage That Lasts

One of the biggest misconceptions regarding beauty products is that the bigger the price tag, the better the results. The drugstore wants a word with whoever spread that vicious lie. Coverage comes in many forms, but we can’t deny the security of a foundation that disguises our blemishes without making the skin look too cakey or unnatural.

Although a lot of our favorite formulas tend to cost at least $20, there’s also a slew of budget-friendly options that are just as useful. We do wish some of these had a wider shade range, but hopefully that’ll change now that inclusivity is finally becoming a vital part of the beauty industry. Check out our favorites ahead.

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Nyx Total Control Drop Foundation

NYX Total Control Drop Foundation

The glass dropper allows you to closely customize exactly how much coverage you want, from sheer to full and everything in between. Available in 30 shades.

$14 at NYX

Photo: Nyx

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Almay Best Blend Forever™ Makeup

Almay Best Blend Forever Makeup

This SPF-infused formula doubles as a moisturizer, offering lightweight, buildable coverage.

$16.99 at Ulta

Photo: Almay

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Black Opal Even True Flawless Liquid Foundation

Black Opal Even True Flawless Liquid Foundation

An oil-free and fragrance-free range created with darker skin tones in mind.

$11.95 at Black Opal

Photo: Black Opal

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Burt's Bees Goodness Glows Full Coverage Liquid Makeup

Burt’s Bees Goodness Glows Full Coverage Liquid Makeup

This 98.9-percent-natural formula is made with meadowfoam seed oil, which is known for its moisturizing benefits.

$17 at Burt’s Bees

Photo: Burt’s Bees

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Col Lab Meet Your Matte Velvet Foundation

Col Lab Meet Your Matte Velvet Foundation

Get medium to full coverage atop shiny skin with this matte finish formula.

$14.99 at Sally Beauty

Photo: Sally Beauty

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Covergirl Vitalist Healthy Elixir Foundation

CoverGirl Vitalist Healthy Elixir Foundation

Vitamins, antioxidants, and sun protection collide to bring you one of the most hydrating foundations out today.

$9.09 at Amazon

Photo: Covergirl

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Wet n Wild MegaCushion Foundation

Wet n Wild MegaCushion Foundation

Tap the cushion once for sheer coverage or press down on the airtight compact again to build even more.

$8.99 at Wet n Wild

Photo: Wet n Wild

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Elf Flawless Finish Foundation

Elf Flawless Finish Foundation

A matte-finish formula for covering oily skin and brightening your complexion.

$6 at Elf

Photo: Elf

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | L'Oréal Infallible Pro-Matte Foundation

L’Oréal Infallible Pro-Matte Foundation

This demi-matte formula promises more than 24 hours of coverage and lightweight wear.

$12.99 at L’Oréal

Photo: L’Oréal

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Maybelline Fit Me Dewy and Smooth Foundation

Maybelline Fit Me Dewy and Smooth Foundation

Fragrance-free and dermatologically tested, this SPF-infused formula is a must-try for anyone with sensitive skin.

$7.99 at Maybelline

Photo: Maybelline

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Models Own Pro-Foundation Stick

Models Own Pro-Foundation Stick

This easy-to-use stick also doubles as a primer, so you don’t have to worry about creating a smooth base beforehand.

$13.83 at Models Own

Photo: Models Own

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hydrating Tint

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Hydrating Tint

The oil-free foundation is infused with hyaluronic acid so you don’t have to worry about staying moisturized underneath.

$14.44 at Neutrogena

Photo: Neutrogena

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | No7 Stay Perfect Foundation

No7 Stay Perfect Foundation

Although this foundation is meant for medium to full coverage, the transfer-proof formula doesn’t feel too heavy or cakey.

$15.99 at Target

Photo: No7

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Physician's Formula The Healthy Foundation

Physician’s Formula The Healthy Foundation

This one’s infused with an exclusive Brightening Complex, hyaluronic acid for moisture, and plenty of vitamins. What more could you want from a light-coverage formula?

$14.95 at Physician’s Formula

Photo: Physician’s Formula

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Revlon ColorStay Foundation

Revlon ColorStay Foundation

Made specifically for oily or combination skin, this 24-hour-wear foundation promises to leave behind a shine-free finish.

$11.43 at Rite Aid

Photo: Revlon

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Rimmel Lasting Finish 25HR Breathable Foundation

Rimmel Lasting Finish 25HR Breathable Foundation

This lightweight light-coverage foundation promises to stay put for up to a whopping 25 hours.

$7.99 at CVS

Photo: Rimmel

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Sephora Collection 10 HR Wear Perfection Foundation

Sephora Collection 10 HR Wear Perfection Foundation

Available in 37 shades and free of parabens, Sephora’s house foundation disguises blemishes for 10 hours and is buildable, according to your favorite kind of coverage.

$20 at Sephora

Photo: Sephora

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | The Ordinary Coverage Foundation

The Ordinary Coverage Foundation

Although this vegan formula is available in an impressive number of shades, you can also mix different colors to find your perfect match.

$6.90 at The Ordinary 

Photo: The Ordinary

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Wet n Wild Photo Focus Foundation

Wet n Wild Photo Focus Foundation

This foundation underwent testing under seven different photo lighting conditions to ensure that it actually delivers filter-friendly coverage.

$5.99 at Wet n Wild

Photo: Wet n Wild

STYLECASTER | Best Under $20 Foundations | Revlon PhotoReady Insta-Filter Foundation

Revlon PhotoReady Insta-Filter Foundation

The built-in blender makes this silky formula a dream to apply on the skin.

$13.49 at Amazon

Photo: Revlon

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25 Recipes That Will Get You
Excited to Cook with Spring Veggies

25 Recipes That Will Get You
Excited to Cook with Spring Veggies

MAC Cosmetics Accused of Copying Blogger’s Shimmer Setting Spray

In 2016, ‘all about that glow’ is exactly what Joelle Phillips was thinking when she DIY-ed a shimmer setting spray with the help of MAC products and posted it to her Instagram. After her invention went viral, she was warned to take down the photo in fear of larger companies stealing her idea (two years too early, but a warning to be heeded, indeed).

In 2017, just one week after posting another viral post–this time a video of her creating the mist — Phillips came out with her own line of shimmer setting sprays, aptly titled Omglo. This time around, instead of mixing MAC pigment in with MAC Fix+Finishing spray, she told Revelist she now sources all her own materials while still mixing them in her house.  

Fast forward to last month, and TrendMood1 posts about MAC Cosmetics latest product: shimmer Fix+ shades in Matte, Gold Lite and Pink Lite. Before you rebuttal saying shimmer sprays can’t be owned by one woman (Phillips, that is), Revelist pointed out that MAC collaborated on the sprays with makeup artist, Jun Jun.

The collaboration by itself wouldn’t be a big deal, except that MAC is denying credit where credit is due. The brand could have easily partnered with Phillips, another budding MUA, rather than than Jun Jun, who already has over 300K followers. While we appreciate MAC working with an artist of color, Phillips is right when she says black women are usually an “afterthought.”

When Revelist asked Phillips if she was upset by MAC stealing her idea, she responded perfectly. “It would have been nice to have been reached out to by MAC. I would have gladly taken up the opportunity because I really feel like black women, especially in the beauty community, are always the last to be heard.”

But Phillips isn’t letting MAC get her hopes down because she has something they don’t and that’s shade range. The setting sprays put forth by MAC barely scratch the surface, while Phillips formulated her’s specifically for black women.

She said, “Now, my products are for everyone, but I have shades specifically for women of color. I created them for us. The shades I’ve seen aren’t going to fit anybody past J.Lo. I would never be offended by that.”

She also has an incredible group of people standing behind her. There were tons of comments on TrendMood1’s post calling out MAC for “playing catch up” and copying a woman of color. People even tagged Omglo and told people to make their way over there for “more shades” that are “vegan and affordable.”

It’s no surprise a black woman came up with something first, then a conglomerate came along and claimed it as their own. But if the big brands aren’t going to pay attention to all women— or cosmetic wearers in general— it’s a good thing black women are taking matters into their own hands and making the beauty lines themselves.

Benefit Cosmetics Brings Back Its Recalled ‘Gimme Brow’ Gel

Updated on March 13, 2018 at 12:00PM EST:

After a long five months of recall, cult-favorite Benefit Cosmetics’ Gimme Brow+, is officially back in stores. In October 2017, the company voluntarily recalled the OG gel brow volumizer, “Gimme Brow,” saying it didn’t meet their standards. This time around, the formula is essentially the same, but with upgraded and updated ingredients, which means you’ll get great brows without the irritation they once feared.

According to Teen Vogue, the revamped ingredient list complies with “the latest standards set by Benefit’s parent company LVMH.” And that little plus sign tacked onto the end of the name? Well, a representative says it’s meant to emphasize the fact that you’re actually getting serious volume with this gel.

The long wait is over, so head over to a physical Benefit Cosmetics store, the brand’s official site, Sephora, Ulta, Macy’s or Nordstrom to snag the product for its longstanding price, $24.

Original story published on October 30, 2017 at 10:30AM EST:

Benefit Cosmetics prides itself on being the eyebrow authority, so when one of its products is abruptly pulled from shelves, we notice. Just before the weekend, the brand recalled its Gimme Brow Gel, explaining that recent batches of the product didn’t meet “stringent quality standards.”

The best-selling product is a brush-on formula meant to volumize and enhance the appearance of sparse brows. It’s available in three different shades: light, medium and deep.

The full statement reads, “Benefit Cosmetics is committed to the highest levels of quality and doing what’s right for our customers. Out of an abundance of caution, we have initiated a voluntary recall of our Gimme Brow product after discovering that certain batches of the product did not meet our stringent quality standards.”

Although a Benefit employee confirmed to Glamour that this is a voluntary recall, they advise using with extreme caution, since it could lead to irritation or other adverse reactions for some.

For now, Gimme Brow has disappeared from online retailers like Ulta and Sephora. The brand is also working to remove it from brick-and-mortar stores and urges customers to return their tubes as soon as possible for a full refund. And although Benefit has no plans to reformulate their hero product, the goal is to bring it back  “as soon as possible.”

In short: It’s better to be safe now than sorry later. So step away from the spoolie brush and sit tight until it’s back on shelves. And if you have more specific questions regarding the Gimme Brow Gel, visit the Benefit website for more deets.

18 Badass Beauty Bosses You Should Be Following on Instagram

International Women’s Day may have passed, but it’s still Women’s History Month, so the celebration continues. Our Instagram feeds are chock-full of inspiring women we may not know personally but whom we look up to for all kinds of inspo and advice.

And if you count yourself as part of the beauty set, chances are you’re familiar with some of today’s most badass (and hardest-working) hair, skin, and makeup experts. The entrepreneurial spirit of the beauty industry is stronger than ever, and although there are hundreds of thousands of woman-owned businesses out there, these 18 bosses are at the top of their game and taking us all along for the ride.

If you’re contemplating a big idea of your own and need a little motivation to start working on it, add these women to your Instagram feed and they’ll help keep you on track.

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Emily Weiss

Emily Weiss

Glossier is by far one of today’s buzziest (and best reviewed) beauty brands, and we have Weiss, its founder, to thank for that. You may recall her journey started back in 2010, when she birthed “Into the Gloss,” a blog about grooming routines that’s still going strong in 2018.

Photo: instagram / @emilywweiss

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Ursula Stephen

Ursula Stephen

Stephen’s famous clientele list includes Zendaya, Bebe Rexha, and the iconic Rihanna (that iconic black pixie was her work). However, you may not know that the hair guru also runs a successful hair salon in Brooklyn, New York.

Photo: instagram / @ursulastephen

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Rachel Roff

Rachel Roff

The aesthetician is responsible for the creation of Urban Skin Rx, arguably the biggest skin care brand for women of color. Her products are endorsed by a slew of black celebs, and the cleansing bar line just became available in Target.

Photo: instagram / @urbanskinfounder

Jessica Alba

We’ve loved watching Alba’s evolution from movie star to bona fide business owner. Her company, Honest Beauty, is leading the charge in providing more eco-conscious, yet affordable, beauty options to men, women, and children everywhere.

Photo: Instagram/@jessicaalba

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Myleik Teele

Myleik Teele

Teele is the founder of curlBOX, one of the first subscription services for women with natural hair. Her business is still going strong, but we also love following her on social media for advice on entrepreneurship and living a more purposeful life.

Photo: instagram / @myleik

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Lauren Napier

Lauren Napier

Napier’s expertise spans makeup and skin care, but when it came time to create a product of her own, she decided to go with something we all need: a good makeup wipe! Her “CLEANSE” products are made with natural ingredients and are perfect for the woman on-the-go.

Photo: instagram / @laurennapier

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Marianna Hewitt

Marianna Hewitt

The Los Angeles–based fashion blogger can now add “beauty expert” to her résumé, thanks to the just-launched Summer Fridays Jet Lag Mask, which she created alongside Lauren Gores Ireland.

Photo: instagram / @marianna_hewitt

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Huda Kattan

Huda Kattan

If there were an actual totem pole for beauty-bloggers-turned-beauty-juggernauts, Kattan would be sitting pretty on top. Her line, Huda Beauty, is a top seller in Sephora, and Kattan herself remains a force to be reckoned with in the blogger community.

Photo: instagram / @hudabeauty

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Charlotte Tilbury

Charlotte Tilbury

Not only does Tilbury have a successful beauty collection of her own; she’s still one of the busiest makeup artists in Hollywood, with an A-list client list that will put all others to shame.

Photo: instagram / @ctilburymakeup

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Wende Zomnir

Wende Zomnir

Obsessed with Urban Decay’s cult favorite “Naked” palettes? They’re the brainchild of brand owner Zomnir, whom many refer to as the “original beauty junkie.”

Photo: instagram / @udwende

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Jinsoon Choi

Jin Soon Choi

You’ve probably painted your nails at least once with any of the colors from her long-running lacquer line. Choi also manages a group of spas and still works behind the scenes at runways during Fashion Month.

Photo: instagram / @jinsoonchoi

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Rihanna

She really needs no introduction. Oh, and you were probably following her long before she came for everyone’s bank account with the affordable and inclusive Fenty Beauty.

Photo: instagram / @badgalriri

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Charlotte Cho

Charlotte Cho

She’s the cofounder and aesthetician behind Soko Glam, one of the biggest websites for discovering the best in Korean beauty.

Photo: instagram / @charlottejcho

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Jen Atkin

When she’s not styling the manes of Hollywood royalty, such as the Kardashians, Atkin is developing products for her hugely successful hair care line, Ouai.

Photo: instagram / @jenatkinhair

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Kat Von D

The tattoo artist and beauty guru made cruelty-free products more accessible when she created her namesake collection, Kat Von D Beauty. Today, it’s our go-to destination for colors that pop and makeup that stays put.

Photo: instagram / @thekatvond

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Lora Arellano

Lora Arellano

When we’re not staring at her stunning tattoos, we’re shopping the Los Angeles–based makeup artist’s Melt Cosmetics, a line of unconventionally colored makeup products.

Photo: instagram / @lora_arellano

STYLECASTER | Beauty Bosses to Follow on Instagram | Taylor Frankel

Taylor Frankel

Frankel and her sister were just teenagers when they launched their NUDESTIX line, and today its multiuse products are top sellers in Sephora and beyond.

Photo: instagram / @taylor_frankel

Drew Barrymore

We never expected this A-list actress to gift us with one of today’s most popular drugstore beauty brands, but now we can’t imagine walking through Walmart without spotting Flower Beauty.

Photo: Instagram/@drewbarrymore

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The Best Dark Spot Correctors
for Zapping Blemishes

The Best Dark Spot Correctors
for Zapping Blemishes