Sunday, July 4th, 2010

Choose or Lose

Do you prefer to buy online or in-store?

  • In-store (73%, 2,049 Votes)
  • Online (25%, 697 Votes)
  • Other - I'll tell you in the comments! (2%, 44 Votes)

Total Voters: 2,790

Feel free to elaborate on your answer in the comment section!

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85 thoughts on “Do you prefer to buy online or in-store?

  1. Online – because it’s cheaper :)

  2. Online for most things but instore for foundations

  3. Ren

    Yup, it’s practically all online for me. We have a CVS. That’s it. Oh well, that’s what I get for living in a small town…on an island. XD There’s a Target on the mainland, but I never really go over there much. Closest Sephora is an hour and a half away. XP I make sure to do my research before buying online though because I refuse to be ripped off.

  4. Azaza

    I prefer to see the product in person before I buy the product but if I cant help it then I will buy it online but only after I have read reviews and seen swatches of the product I want

  5. Valerie

    Basically, I am a free shipping ho. I won’t buy online unless I have a free shipping code, otherwise it’s in-store for me (mostly at Nordstrom).

  6. Jakara

    I buy most of my products online b/c it is cheaper. I tru mu foundations on in store and mostly purchase from the store or online depending on price. All my drug store products I go to the store.

  7. Online. I am a painter so I am a pretty good judge of color so I don’t have a problem matching. I like to really mull over my choices carefully because my collection is so big. Also I am really busy so I need to shop at like 2 am sometimes. Also I hate to say it my MAC girls closest to me aren’t very friendly or attentive so I always buy from there online.

  8. Sharon

    Even with your amazing swatches christine, I prefer to buy in store when I can. I need instant gratification. Also some things you need to see on your own skin (back of hand, lol) to determine if it’ll really work for yo. My exception is nail polish, which I never buy in store.

  9. AnGeLwInGz

    I swatch in-store and buy online. I’ve seen salespeople put open/ returned products back on the shelves before so I have a fear of getting a used product.

  10. Lea

    I do shop online usually, but just because we have NOTHING here. There are only drugstores here and the next perfumery is about an hour away, the next MAC, Chanel and Dior counters are about two hours away. So I usually rely on YouTube and your site for swatches/reviews of things. But the online store where I get my stuff from has an amazing return policy, so that’s a plus.

  11. Amy

    I actually do a mixture of both. I like to research a little on more costly buys then I make a list and go shopping. I still walk out with some impulse buys but I find this way helps me from spending to much time and money on all non informed buys :)


  12. Michelle

    I mostly buy in-store but I get the LE items that will sell out quickly online.

  13. Carey

    I prefer on-line prices, hate the wait and possible disappointment. Then store purchases instant happiness, but horrible prices or not always available.

  14. holdenismine

    I like to browse in store, and possibly buy, but for the most part there are a lot more deals, free gifts and samples available when you buy online. But of course nothing beats going to a shop and getting what you want in your hand when you need it

  15. sillylilacs

    I do research online for products and for products that I really like, I buy online, the products that are on the fence for me I need to goto the store and swatch. And if I like, I buy online lol, if not, then well, I’m not buying :p

    But yes, online is my usual goto. I live in Chicago, and the sales tax is 10.25% which is ridiculous =(

    • Paige

      I live in chicago also, and its a pain to buy instore because I feel like I spend so much more!

  16. Leenie

    I like to shop both ways, But when It comes to buying makeup that I haven’t seen yet It’s a must for me to go in person

  17. Shontay

    Online! No pressure to buy and I have all the time in the world to decide and research. I would love to have mt stuff asap but I love receiving my little package and it cuts down on impulse buys.

  18. rowena cariaga

    i often buy stuff online but i still prefer to buy most makeup product at the store because you can actually see what the color looks like and feel the texture..i find if i buy cosmetics online, there are always the possibilities that the color isnt right for my skin tone or that the color isnt exactly what i saw online…swatches given by most bloggers are helpful but then again, because of differences in our skin tone, it will still differ…so i would say, 70% at store and 30% online…

  19. Dawn

    Wherever possible, I like to see things in person before I buy. Whether I then buy in store or online depends on cost, including postage.

    Unfortunately with things like MAC and Stila I have no choice but to buy online as there are no shops or counters anywhere near me that sell them (Too Faced has just gone from here, too) and I can’t really afford to pay out for train or coach fares to London any time there’s a new MAC collection out, let alone find the time, since I am a Carer.

    Because of this I have to rely heavily on reviews and swatches from Temptalia and other Youtube ‘gurus’.

  20. Taylor Ruszczyk

    I like going to the store to see the true color, and its pay off. But, if I know I like a product or it’s limited edition, i go offline to insure I’ll get the product :)

  21. High-end online, and low-end in drugstores 😀

  22. Kajsa

    Like the international person I am, online is the only way for me..

  23. Tori

    In store so i can see the products but i actually purchase the majority of my makeup online, even with sephora and everything within walking distance from my house lol :)

  24. Jenn

    I’ll go in-store to make swatches and stuff (or find on!), and then I’ll go home and buy what I want online. It’s cheaper, I can find coupons, and at many times, freebies are included for online purchases. 😀

    For me, the downsides about online shopping is the wait and the impulse purchases I make to get free shipping!

  25. Colette

    In general, I prefer to buy in store because I like seeing the product in person. But I will buy things online on occasion, such as when I need to re-buy concealor/foundation.

  26. Thincspot

    Both! For certain items (makeup and jeans especially) I need to see and try the item first. But most of the shopping options available to me are fairly redundant…I can only go into the GAP or Forever 21 so many times. When I want to find something different or unique, I find that shopping online makes those types of items much more available.

  27. Katrice

    I prefer to shop online for makeup. It’s easier to separate with my mula that way. lol

  28. Julia

    As much as I love the ease of ordering online, I love the satisfaction of walking out with my products when I shop in-store. But then again, I love getting packages in the mail too, so both are fun!

  29. I have to buy online a lot since I live in a small town, but I love purchasing in store. I like to purchase in store because then I can see all of the colors up close and swatch them on me. Generally purchasing in store is a more satisfied one, and then I also don’t have to wait the 5+ days for the products to come in :)

  30. Ashley

    I’d rather buy in-store, but it depends. For things like cosmetics, skin/hair care and clothing, I’d obviously only buy in-store unless I’m repurchasing something I’ve used in the past that I can’t get in-store. With these items, it’s difficult to really see what the product is from a picture on the screen, and it’s harder to exchange and return products. With things like accessories, jewelery, music/DVDs, etc I will gladly buy online, especially since a good deal of artists I like don’t have their music available locally.

    Things may be cheaper online, but when you consider having to wait for it to arrive, paying shipping, possibly having to deal with the hassle of returning products (either from them not working or showing up defective), it’s a lot easier to buy in-store!

  31. vickie

    Both. I like the instant gratification of buying in store. But if its an online only item and if I want it bad enough I’ll usually buy it but only if I can get free shipping.

  32. Both? I prefer to see and feel the item most of the time. But sometimes with Mac, I want to order online. I just can’t stand being over-bugged by the ladies/guys at Mac, plus, the items are behind a counter and I have to ask for every item I want anyway. It really makes me re-think what I’m purchasing.

  33. Marcia

    I love both but since I buy sooo much mac for example, every time I go, I have to deal with the sales girls say, ” you buy sooo much”. That takes the fun out of it :-(

  34. Hayley

    Online, unless I amtrying out a new shade. I am a sucker for up selling, I always get talked in to this :P. Plus I find especially at MAC I get ignored :(, I look younger than I am-I am told one day it will b a good thing lol- so I find they treat me like some lost pre-teen :(

  35. Melissa

    some of the deals, promotions and samples entice me to buy online…usually I only buy in store on impulse…also for new releases or limited products I can snag them easier as soon as they launch

  36. Jayna

    Online if it is free ship and easy return. I do not really like having to buy large amounts to get free ship either. Online saves them money over brick and morter stores, so they should offer better deals on free ship. For example, at Chicos, once you become a passport member (I think you purchase about $400 or something like that, you get %5 off every purchase(online and instore) and always get free ship. I generally just return to the store, faster credits.

  37. raven

    I prefer online, i find everything I need and desire without wasting too time. the only draw back is the delivery time; but when the package arrives, it’s like opening a present each and everytime :)

  38. CeeBee

    I do prefer to swatch stuff in person if possible and while I don’t mind going in store (but not while it’s super busy!) it is actually a bit of a hassle for me so I do most of my shopping on line. Plus makeup in NZ is WAY expensive and the range is fairly limited, so on line is cheaper.

    I just wish Sephora shipped internationally!!!!

    PS. I have ordered stuff on line and over the phone after seeing swatches on Temptalia (we have similar skin tone and colouring) but otherwise sight unseen, so thanks heaps Christine! :)

  39. Julie

    It depends. If I want to know how it’ll look on me before I purchase, I go to the store, swatch, then either purchase it there or online.

  40. I just hate paying for shipping. Plus colors can be off when you are looking at them on the screen. Now, for things like the Urban Decay Alice in Wonderland palette online was fine because I wanted it and shipping was free I think. But if I want anything from MAC I go to the store b/c there site swatches never match the actual shade.

  41. Lauren

    Online if I know I for sure want it- because you don’t have to wait for a salesperson.

  42. I buy clothing online but for cosmetics I try to buy it in-store!

  43. Abi

    I prefer buying instore because i can see what the product is like before buying it. but i also like buying online because i love getting things in the post lol :)

  44. ali

    Online for makeup/MAC. The girls at my MAC counter are so rude! I hate dealing with them. Whenever I’m around the counter they act like I’m going to steal something or act like I’m going to get my germs all over everyone. I mean really! But for anything else, I like buying it in-store. :)

  45. Jess

    Find the product in the store, test it out, think about whether or not I want the product, and then buy it online with coupons 😀

  46. Marina

    Sephora is so far away from me. It’s the same with Ulta. So usually if I really want something and don’t want to drive an hour, I’ll just order it online. The downside is that some things should be checked out in person first…but it’s always so much fun to wait for your package!

  47. Jennifer

    Foundations and face powder I have to go in the store to try out, to get my color.

    Most anything else since I’ve found temptalia, spektra, and youtube, I can usually tell if it will work for me or not. In fact in a years worth of 99 percent make up online shopping I’ve had maybe 2 or 3 misses, which weren’t that big of a deal. That’s how good temptalia swatches and reviews are for me!

    Believe me I’ve spent a couple thousand in cosmetics in a year, and two and three little lipstick/e/s items misses is nothing big deal.

  48. Valerie

    I LOVE liquidation Sales, I’m from Montreal and we do have twice a year a L’oreal, Clarins and Guerlain sales and those are my favorite time of the year!!!

  49. Katey

    makeup in store. everything else online

  50. Sarah

    I prefer in-store but I don’t have a lot of time to waste shopping anymore so I usually shop online when I’m home long after all the store are closed.

  51. Bel

    Hummmm Other……If I know exactly what I want, or it’s the second, third time I’m buying such product, I’ll buy it online….But if I need to check color, pigmentation, how it looks like on my skin, smell, etc…and especially if no one has done a review or swatch, then I’ll buy it instore!

  52. Yumi

    In store because when I buy online it never works for me, and I’m super indecisive so I literally NEED to see it before I buy.

  53. Erica

    I like the instant gratification of buying in store….but when I am at Sephora or a make up counter, I always end up coming home with more than I went in for. If I order online, I tend to buy just what I really want and know I don’t already have a dupe for. But darn it, I’m impatient and hate paying for expedited shipping!

  54. rosalie williams

    online when there is free shipping and samples

  55. Evelyn

    I sit & work out the cost with shipping & tax. If it’s free shipping and the usual tax I pay in my state I’ll order online. If there’s shipping on top of tax I’ll buy stuff in the store. I also prefer to swatch things first before I buy because some things look so nice online but totally hideous in person.

  56. dani

    i do both because when i can’t get to the store right a way then i order it online. if i’m in the store i’ll check it out and if i like it i’ll buy but if i don’t i just skip it.

  57. Penemuel

    I prefer to buy online for most things — every time I go to a store the things I’m specifically looking for seem to be sold out. Also I don’t get pestered every two minutes by SAs asking if they can help me when I’m just browsing. The main times I prefer to buy in a store is when I’m trying to determine a specific shade or when online descriptions are inadequate (such as the lack of specific dimensions on retractable brushes — I needed one small enough for my bag and none of the ones online actually said how many inches long they were!)

  58. Monet

    I swatch in store and do tons of re-search – THEN i buy online. so sorta both i guess lol

  59. If i already know what I want, or if I’ve seen it on your blog I usually buy online because you can get better discounts and no pressure from the sales clerk. Otherwise, I go in-store because colors are so different on screen than in person. And sometimes I do need help from a sales clerk in deciding!

  60. I like buying online because there are better deals, but if I don’t already know what shade I want, I try to look at the actual products first.

  61. Lolly

    Online because I can browse for as long as I want without looking creepy! Plus my local department store does not have much of a range…

  62. Nayeli

    Definitly at the store, I have to see the product in person, and I hate having to pay for shipping and handling, it just makes things a lot more expensive, at least for me, so I prefer to go to the store, plus luckily for me I live near the mall, ulta, and all the stores I like to shop at

  63. tg

    Online. It’s easier to find what I want, no pesky salespeople or busy malls to contend with, sometimes cheaper, can get free samples and always a bigger variety. (For instance, I can’t get Illamasqua at my local Sephora, so I usually only go there for returns.)

  64. I only purchase things online when I have to (like friends & family sales)!

  65. Nools007

    Tend to research on line and then go and actually look at the products in store. You can check colours, foundation texture , you can feel see if product is right for you. If unavailable in store then would buy online.

  66. Hilana

    In store. I like to see exactly what I buy and how it tests on me first.

  67. amy

    I prefer online. There is almost always a coupon code for a nice extra or something additional that you normally do not get in the stores. Online is better access to more stores and places that are not necessarily within driving distance for me. I like knowing a package is coming too! In some instances, there is no tax so its actually cheaper. Since most places have free shipping, there is no difference in price.

  68. Jennie

    I’m really torn between the two. I do most of my shopping online. You really can’t replace going inside a store and seeing the products in person. You have the chance to build your own opinion. But sometimes when I go into stores like Sephora, I feel so overwhelmed. Sometimes I loose focus of what I went there for and start to get disinterested. There’s so much there and it starts to feel impossible to look at everything. But when shopping online, everything feels so much more put together. I can see each product individually for what it is and not just another soldier in an army of cosmetics. I can read reviews and see swatches and weigh the pro and cons. But then sometimes it’s really hard to avoid the hype of certain products. But overall, I really enjoy both, even though I tend to do one more than the other.

  69. Lisa

    I usually buy it online, because its the most convenient. and sometimes i have the horrible urge to buy stuff in the middle of the night while i’m checking out the sephora website. But when i do buy in stores I always go and swatch foundation colors so i know what color i am.

  70. Marissa M

    In store! So I can see what I’m buying!

  71. Suzy R

    On-line, mostly, with no pushy, nosey sales people around!

  72. Cherokee

    I prefer to make all my purchases in store than online for a host of reasons. However, I will buy online if I can’t find something in the store but it is online or if an item is cheaper on line. Recently, I have taken to ordering MAC online because I feel like I learn so much from beauty blogs like Temptalia and youtube that I can make a well informed decision. Especially since to me, the MAC makeup artist aren’t as helpful as I would like and they are very short just to make a sale. But, I prefer buying in store.

  73. piggles

    If its from Sephora, I try in-store and buy online because I get reward points with my bank AND it’s good for when I just need to pick up a staple product real quick. It usually arrives like the next day. Plus free shipping for $50 and over.

    If its MAC, usually in-store. Gotta test the colors first!

  74. Erin

    I like swatching in stores, but I LOVE getting a great deal with coupon codes, samples, and free shipping online!

  75. Abby

    I usually “scout out” products in stores, then shop around for something cheaper online (can usually get things like bottles of nail polish for $1 or $2 less, if not more, even with shipping). Sometimes the shops have crazy good clearance sales that I just can’t pass up, though!

  76. Cassie

    Shop online; buy in-store. That way I am (slightly) less prone to impulse buys since I’ve done my research, but I can still keep my money local and make sure things look good in person. I also like that since I am a frequent shopper at the local MAC counter, most of the staff are extra nice to me since they know I’m a cash cow.

  77. Michelle

    I’m mostly a drugstore beauty, so I stick with those type of brands that are instore, but for the more expensive stuff, that’s online only.

  78. Janis

    Depends. When I know the product or at least I’ve seen swatches of quality, with detailed comments, so I prefer to buy online because it is more practical and I have more freedom to choose, easy payment and gifts without being subject to pressure seller. Here in Brazil, we have more variety of brands and beauty products in the sales sites. Therefore, the swatches and reviews of TempTale help so much!
    The good news is that we had a Sephora will open a virtual shop in Brazil. The Brazilians love cosmetics and makeup, so the expectation is great!

  79. civa

    I prefer to see the product in person but sometimes ordering online feels much relaxing without some one trying to sell me more stuff I don’t need. I make sure to do my research before I buy online and even when I’m in store, if I don’t feel comfortable I would go home and order online – customer service is key besides I have more time to decide if the product is worth buying.

  80. stephanie

    for me, i like to but most things in store, but i dont have a mac or sephora near me, so i like making lists of things i wanna swatch in the store if i do go, and then order online. if its palettes or stuff like that, i get online.

  81. Taylor

    In-store of course. Swatches online never seems to be the same in person.

  82. Randi

    In store when I need to get color matched or try something I’ve never tried before. Online for the days i dont feel like going out to the stores, or to repurchase something I know I love and know the color is right.

  83. Rosie

    I prefer in-store by a long way. Buying online can be so frustrating because you have to wait for your product to arrive, even for a free delivery service, it can arrive later than usual. I once ordered an item over a week ago and it still hasn’t arrived. When I go into stores I can buy it and I have it, no problem at all.
    And shopping online is not always cheaper. In stores they have a special offer frequently and you can get a whole collection of books/dvds/cds/records/misc projectors and stuff like that for a good price which you may get in bargain shops. Websites like Amazon and Ebay have other buying options which can rip you off tremendously. It’s better to stick with a local company that all charge the same price. The good thing about online is material goods you can get that can’t sell out in a shop but would do well on the internet market.
    But also it’s the same for stores. Overall I like shopping in stores. I also think that buying online is quite lazy because you don’t get out.

  84. Lauren

    I like shopping in-store more so I can see what I’m buying and whether the item is worth getting. If I purchase an item online I don’t always know what I’m getting and I end up being disappointed because they didn’t display any details of it. When you’re in a shop you have the full detail. You can see what it looks like and if it’s a book, look inside it, whilst on the internet, you can’t do that. You have to order it first and wait for it to arrive. Also I get to chat to people in stores which makes it better ^^