Color Me Pretty

By: Michelle Drown

I’m no beauty maven, but when I lived in San Francisco I liked to head downtown to Sephora every now and again and spend an hour (or two) sampling the makeup, lotions, and eau de toilette sprays that fill the store. By the time I exited, I was a colorful, greasy, stinky mess, but oh the fun I had getting that way. Since moving to Santa Barbara three years ago I’ve missed perusing Sephora’s beauty product smorgasbord. Come September 29, however, I’ll only have to go as far as Paseo Nuevo to get my paws on the latest the cosmetic industry has to offer, for that’s when Sephora opens its new store in our wee burg.

The 5,192-square-foot funhouse will occupy the old Victoria’s Secret space next to Nordstrom, and, according to the company’s press release, “Santa Barbara will now have a place for all that is joyful and fun about beauty.” I’d venture to say that S.B. has gotten along just fine with the numerous excellent beauty product shops in town already, but Sephora’s try-before-you-buy policy does separate it a bit from the pack. They carry myriad brands for sampling, including makeup from Smashbox, Stila, and Bare Escentuals; hair care products from Cosmedicine, Murad, and Beauty Juice; and fragrance from Marc Jacobs, Stella McCartney, and Chanel. (Sephora even sells Britney Spears’s perfume, for those feeling “Toxic.”) Go forth and get pretty.

4•1•1 Store hours are Mon.-Fri., 10 a.m.- 9 p.m.; Sat., 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Sun., 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Visit

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