If you have to buy it, get the best deal!
-Read articles regarding Ulta: Birthday Gift 2015, 21 Days of Beauty Spring 2015 Butter London, March 2015 FabuFinds, 21 Days of Beauty Spring 2015 Too Faced, Beauty Break Macadamia Professional, 20% off Prestige, 16 piece GWP, Best of Becca, Beauty Break Prada, 18 piece GWP, Love Your Hair Spring 2015 Alterna, L’Oreal, and Wella, Love Your Hair Spring 2015 Tigi and Matrix, 5x Points Too Faced, 10x Points Platinum Summer 2015, 21 Days of Beauty Fall 2015 Anastasia Beverly Hills and Platinum Urban Decay, Redeeming 2,000 points, Hot Deals for Christmas, Black Friday Deals 2015, Birthday Gift 2016, Launch of The Glowing Skin Event Winter 2016, 20% Off Prestige, Dew the Hoola GWP, In Store Clearance, 21 Days of Beauty 2016, Lancome 5x Points and a Laura Geller Beauty Break, 21 Days of Beauty Spring 2016 Purchased steals from Ulta, Too Faced, Benefit, and Philosophy, My 2016 Birthday Gift, Benefit Brow Bar Free Service, 2016 Birthday Gift Part Two, Ulta GWP Beauty Bag, March 2016 FabuFinds, 20% off Prestige and a 2000 Point Redemption, Gorgeous Hair Event Spring 2016, Gorgeous Hair Event Spring 2016 Haul with a Pureology Beauty Break, Buy Two, Get Two Free Ulta Brand, All About Ulta Coupons, Summer Time Beauty Break, NYX Beauty Break and Urban Decay Gwen Stefani Eyeshadow Palette, eBay Gift Card Flash Sale, Glowing Skin Event Summer 2016, Fourth of July Deals, The July 2016 Liter Sale, Free Gift and GWP Offer, 20% off Prestige, a Beauty Break, and Lipstick Queen Let Them Eat Cake, Free Gift With Any Purchase, Tips for Getting the Best Deal, FabuFinds July 2016, Ulta Forever Fabulous Flash Sale Exclusive Platinum Member Offers and Over 30 Deals For Everyone, 10x Points for Platinum Appreciation Day 2016, 21 Days of Beauty Fall 2016, Free 20-piece Beauty Bag with a $60 purchase, Julep Product Launch, 21 Days of Beauty Platinum Steal Becca Mineral Blush, Beauty Breaks September through October 2016, 21 Days of Beauty Platinum Perk GWP Beauty Bag, 21 Days of Beauty It Brushes for Ulta, Gorgeous Hair Event Fall 2016, How to Refer a Friend, A Gorgeous Way to Give, Ulta Double GWP Bag and 5x Points on It Brushes for Ulta, Julep Meet Your New Beauty Bestie Maven Meet-Up, Clearance, and GWP Offers, Double GWP Bag AGAIN, Bonus Point Offers with a GWP, FabuFinds October 2016, Beauty Breaks November through December 2016, 2017 Birthday Gift, Liter Sale, Love Your Skin Event 2017, Bonus Points 2017, Platinum Perks 2017, Beauty Breaks January Through March 2017, Ulta Collection Try Me Kits and Samplers 2017, 5x Points offers for 2017 on Specific Brands, Products, or Services, General GWP Beauty Bag Offers 2017, Affiliate GWP Beauty Bag Offers 2017, Sweepstakes Opportunities, and Targeted GWP Offers 2017.
-Ulta has a number of minor and major promotions throughout the year. All promotions with set expiration dates cut off right at midnight central time. Only in rare scenarios will offers work even a minute past the deadline. The major promotions take place around the same time each year while the minor promotions can pop-up randomly at any time. Read below for details (and date predictions). Tips For Getting The Best Deal is a great place to start for those looking to maximize their deal shopping this retailer.
-Join the UltaMate Rewards Program. If you’re new, get $10 off your first order with this referral link. Send a referral link to your friends. Earn 1 point for every dollar spent. Platinum members earn 1.25 points for every dollar spent and get exclusive Platinum offers throughout the year, including a bonus birthday item. All members get a birthday gift plus 2x points in their birth month and additional multipliers sporadically throughout the year. Members also get an offer for 5x points during the month of their account anniversary (the date they signed up under the original program, not the new one), and that multiplier is good for one week. Cash points in for a credit to use on anything. The more you bank, the more valuable the points are. Spend $450 a year, and you will be upgraded to Platinum. Your Platinum membership will be valid from the date you earn it through the end of the following year. Points do not expire while you’re in Platinum status, but use them within a year of earning them if you’re not.
-Point values are calculated when you redeem, not when you earn. The only way to get maximum value is to redeem in 2000 point increments. 4000 gets you there, because it is divisible by 2000. 3000 is not. Redeeming 3000 at once will get you $125 on 2000 and $50 on 1000. Redeem 2000 at once for $125. Cashing in 1000 points twice gets $50 for each order instead of $125. When redeeming points, you still earn points on the amount you spend. If you redeem $125 and spend $75, you get points on the $75. It will divide the $125 redemption across all items and calculate points based on the amount left for each item, so items with better multipliers will not get special weight. You can redeem up to 4000 online and 5000 in store, but I suggest only redeeming 4000 in store and saving the remaining 1000 until you get to 2000.
–Multipliers can be combined, but there are two basic rules:
-If you’re Platinum and have a 5x multiplier combined with a 2x multiplier: you will get 5x for the first offer + 1x point for the second (deducting the base since it is already factored into the 5x offer) + 0.25 Platinum bonus for a 6.25x total.
-Read articles regarding Ulta coupons. Ulta takes a lot of Coupons. I go over all types, how to receive the offers, and rules for the coupons. Ulta carries drugstore and prestige brands. Drugstore brands are priced higher than your average drugstore, because they run constant promotions and almost all Ulta coupons are eligible. You can even use manufacturers coupons if you shop in person. If you shop during a promotion with a coupon, you can get a better deal than most drugstores. Prestige brands have competitive pricing, so you tend to get an even better deal with sales and coupons.
-Ulta always has a bevy of brand specific GWPs that can be combined with any general GWP and a coupon code (assuming the items you are buying qualify for the coupon you are entering). I always type in Gift With Purchase (so my links do that as well), because it pulls up one extra item than when you visit the GWP section. There can also be pop up gifts available with any Ulta purchase that are not always emailed out.
-Check all offers, including: sales and special offers before purchasing anything. There is no official clearance section online, but there is one in every Ulta store. Store clearance tends to have deeper discounts than the sale section online, but selection is very limited and differs from store to store. It is not in the same place across different stores, so ask an employee if you cannot locate it.
-Try not to order more than one nail polish at a time online from Ulta. It comes loose inside a bag with no bubbles. They have broken on me in multiples but not singles. Ulta branded polishes are great quality, and I have a lot of nail polish brands.
-Ulta also tends to send offers for point multipliers (frequent offers for 2x points, 3x points (usually for Platinum), and 5x points (usually on specific brands), free gifts, GWP offers, Hot Buys, Platinum deals, Platinum Perks, Beauty Breaks (mostly on Wednesdays from 8am-12pmPST), Steals, and unique coupons. Be sure to check your mail and read all of your emails, because the special promos hide at times in otherwise normal looking ads. If you get a special offer (these are usually targeted based off past order history), you must activate it from the email or from the My Rewards section of your online account. It never hurts to check My Rewards before placing an online order, because offers appear there before the email arrives.
–Flash Sales happen throughout the year. These are usually one-day sales that offer a single item or a lot of items.
-Read articles for the Love Your Skin Event, previously called The Glowing Skin Event. The Love Your Skin Event made its debut in early January 2016. Winter is a great time to pamper skin. This replaced the less impressive Love Your Skin Event. It is a 21 day event where skincare is featured. So far, there is no indication this event will repeat twice a year.
-Read articles for the Liter Sale. The Liter Sale, also known as the Jumbo Size Haircare sales take place in winter and summer. In the winter, it usually started in early to mid January. The summer event usually starts in early to mid July. It offers the cheapest prices of the season, because this special does not take place during the Gorgeous Hair Event. Both sales last 21 days and unlike promotions with steals, items are usually on sale throughout the event. Popular items will run out of stock before the event ends.
-Read articles regarding 20% off Prestige. Unique promo codes for 20% off prestige brands (excludes: Lancome, Clinique, Benefit Brow Bar, NARS, fragrance (at times), and brand new releases (at times) are available late January, early April, there was a bonus offer for some Platinum members in late June 2016 (so it could make 6 offers for some Platinum members in 2016), early July for UltaMate, late July for Platinum (this is the normal time but some members who received the June bonus offer did not receive the July offer), late October, and Mid December. The July offer was reduced to 10% for non Platinum members in 2015 and 2016. In 2016, the early April offer was also reduced to 10% for non Platinum members.
-Ulta started sending $15 off $50 coupons in 2016. These usually coincide with the 20% off prestige event. The trend has been Platinum members get 20%, UltaMate members with recent purchases get 10% (or 20%), and UltaMate members without a recent purchase get $15 off $50 to entice them to come back. This is a 30% discount if you only spend $50. I never stop shopping long enough to receive this offer, so I have no articles to link on this.
-Read articles regarding the 21 Days of Beauty. The 21 Days of Beauty happen in the spring and fall. At least one new steal is released everyday for 21 straight days. In Spring, the event usually runs mid March to early April. The fall event usually runs in September, but it does extend into early October at times.
-Read articles regarding the Gorgeous Hair Event. The Gorgeous Hair (previously Love Your Hair) Event happens in the spring and fall. This is the hair products equivalent of the Days of Beauty. It also runs 21 days. Most days release a new steal, but certain specials will be available for the duration of the event. In Spring, the event usually takes place in May. The fall event takes place in October. Most jumbo sizes have better deals during the Liter Sale.
-Read articles regarding 10x points. Platinum members get a one day 10x points event in late August. Only select items and brands participate, and they are not announced until the event starts. All items not included in the 10x points are 5x points. This is a great way to boost points if you’re interested in the covered items.
-Read articles regarding giveaways. There are a number of giveaways throughout the year, and I find moat Ulta giveaways fruitless (there are very few winners, even with winning coupons). The A Gorgeous Way to Give supports the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. This is my favorite giveaway, because it supports a great cause even if you walk away with nothing.
-Read articles regarding Bonus Points. There are times when Ulta offers a fixed number of bonus points for a specified minimum purchase. These are targeted offers. Some members will not receive them. Others will receive a variety of possibilities.
–Any general free gifts with purchase I am aware of are listed below. If your cart meets the purchase minimum, and the charge for the item is not removing, that means the free offer expired. Remove it or they will charge you to send it.
-All major offers are tracked. Active offers are listed below. If you wish to see a chronological history (or details on the most recent promotion) of specific offer types, view their respective articles: Birthday Gift, Liter Sale, Love Your Skin Event, Bonus Point Offers, Platinum Perks, Beauty Breaks, Ulta Try Me Kits, Specific 5x Points Offers, General Beauty Bag Offers, Affiliate Beauty Bag Offers, Sweepstakes Opportunities, and Targeted GWP Offers.
–Beauty Breaks are only available for 4-6 hours at a time, mostly on Wednesday mornings starting at 8am PST. To track all Beauty Breaks and trends, I will update this article every time a new one releases. Surprise Beauty Breaks (offers outside of Wednesdays) do not usually get emailed. I will put a note here when I see a surprise offer.
-Receive a 27-piece skincare beauty bag with a $70 skincare purchase. Working past the expiration date.
-Receive a 0.07oz Urban Decay Original Primer with any purchase. Emailed 01/17/17, but this is in the general GWP section.
-Receive a Sona Gasparian Beauty Bag with a $75 purchase. This bag got delayed again. It was scheduled for 01/08/17 but was pushed back to 01/12/17. It was working for the first few hours on 01/12/17 but got delayed again. . On 01/13/17, it officially became available, but it now requires a promo code SONAGASPARIAN. Sona’s Youtube video on this bag posted 01/13/17 as well. Working past the original expiration date, but it did start late.
-Receive a 1oz bliss Fabulous Foaming Face Wash with any purchase. Expires 01/21/17.
-Receive a 0.05oz Drybar Hot Toddy Heat & UV Protectant with any purchase. Expires 01/28/17.
-The 365 Days of Beauty Sweepstakes runs throughout the Love Your Skin Event. Enter daily. Win coupons, gift cards, Ulta points, and more. Ends 01/28/17.
-Use code 407548 for $3.50 off a $15 purchase. Expires 01/28/17.
View my main page for the guide map to the site and deeper deal exploration.
Disclosure: Referral and Affiliate Links