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Here’s What’s Worth Buying at Sephora’s Beauty Insider Holiday Sale

Photo-Illustration: The Strategist

It’s a great time to be a Sephora Beauty Insider: Holiday savings for members started up last Friday and are running through November 7. The first few days are exclusively for VIB Rouge members, meaning people who spend upward of $1,000 a year; they will get 20 percent off their entire purchase. Today, Tuesday, November 1, the sale opens to VIB members — Insiders who spend at least $350 a year — for a 15 percent discount. The sale opens to all Beauty Insiders on November 3, and they’ll get 10 percent (but that’s anyone who signs up for an account with Sephora). And if you’re lacking in both status and an Insider account, no worries — you can still take 30 percent off the entire Sephora Collection of beauty and personal-care products until November 7; no account required.

This is arguably one of the best beauty sales of the year, with lots of discounts on some of our time-tested favorites, making it a good time to restock your staples or get a head start on holiday shopping for your beauty-obsessed loved ones. Just use the code SAVINGS at checkout to see the discount that applies to your tier. (There’s also free shipping for Beauty Insiders and up.) We’ve applied the 15 percent VIB discount to all of the products below, so if you’re a VIB Rouge member or Beauty Insider, your price will differ slightly.

To ensure hair stays healthy, we recommend this hair mask from Briogeo, which Strategist beauty writer Rio Viera-Newton has said is a solid dupe for the more expensive Christophe Robin masks. According to Viera-Newton, it’s ridiculously moisturizing without being heavy and leaves her hair bouncy, soft, and tangle free.

Another expert-recommended pick is this hair mask from Verb, which Stylebox Salon founder Stephanie Louis says works for every hair type, is paraben and sulfate free, and won’t dull color-treated hair.

This cult-favorite lip mask is a favorite among Strategist readers and is one of Sephora’s best-reviewed products. The K-beauty balm contains hyaluronic acid and retains moisture in the lips, creating a seal that helps to nourish even the driest, flakiest lips. Dermatologist Cybele Fishman recommends this for anyone dealing with dry lips in particular, noting that it’s great for preventing water loss overnight.

Paula’s Choice AHA/BHA serum has been one of the breakout skin-care stars of the year. Long loved by beauty editors and Skin-care Twitter, it is often credited for giving its users an otherworldly glow. It uses gentle but powerful chemical exfoliants to resurface the skin, which means a more even (and brighter, a.k.a. the glow) skin tone and less acne.

Topicals exploded on the skin-care scene in summer 2020 and quickly became a must-have in skin-care routines everywhere thanks to its skin-inclusive ethos, cute packaging, and highly effective products. The products were so efficient that they were often sold out and hard to find. But now you can snag them at Sephora. Opt for the fan-favorite Faded serum, or pick up the Faded body mist, which Viera-Newton recently said was incredibly impressive in fading her eczema scars.

This eye cream from Ole Henriksen is a favorite of both dermatologists and Viera-Newton, who says her dark circles have become “less corpselike, more French” after four months of continued use. An added bonus: It layers nicely under makeup.

Benefit global brow expert Jared Bailey says that everyone needs a pair of sharp, slanted tweezers like these. “It’s really about finding tweezers with a tight closure, as brow hairs can have a light coat of oil on them and tend to be a little slippery,” he says. The tapered end of the Tweezerman tweezers makes it easy to grab hairs one at a time without having to apply too much pressure.

Sephora is also discounting its in-house brand, Sephora Collection, offering 30 percent off everything from eye-shadow sticks to makeup brushes. That includes this eyeliner pencil, which makeup artist Janice Kinjo told us comes in an array of great colors and lasts a long, long time.

Another Sephora Collection favorite: this liquid lipstick. It looks good on virtually everyone thanks to its slightly cool blue base. It’s also a favorite of the Cut’s beauty director, Kathleen Hou, who says it’s basically “Ruby Woo in liquid form.”

We’d be remiss not to mention this Advent calendar because, well, ’tis the season. This one, from Benefit, includes some of the brand’s biggest hits, like Hoola Matte Bronzer, along with minis of its much-loved mascaras.


SPF is essential even in the winter months. We’ve written about this one from Supergoop! a bunch. It doubles as a makeup primer and is a good option for oily skin. Plus it dries clear, so you don’t have to worry about a white pasty cast.

It’s a good time to buy splurgy skin-care tools like the NūFace, which sends soft microcurrents through the skin that increase the body’s cellular energy. This helps to tone and sculpt facial muscles over time. It’s a favorite of dermatologist Dr. Corey Hartman, who says he’s “yet to see anything surpass the efficacy and design of NūFace Trinity” in terms of defining and contouring the face.

Dyson recently released a new colorway of its cult-favorite blow-dryer that is beloved by curly-haired people everywhere. It reduces the potential for heat damage thanks to its ultrafast dry time, and it’s impressively quiet, too. We suspect that this limited-edition hue will go quickly, so if you’re thinking of grabbing this — or the beloved Airwrap — don’t dillydally.

Also on the expensive-skin-care-device front, the Dermaflash is on sale. It simulates an in-office procedure called dermaplaning, which removes all the peach fuzz on your face. This physical-exfoliation process also removes dead skin, revealing a brighter, hair-free glow. It’s a favorite of Strategist writer Tembe Denton-Hurst, who uses it about once a month and says she always get compliments on her skin a few days later.

Tower 28 makes some of our favorite beauty products for that sun-kissed, back-from-vacation glow — and they also happen to be formulated for sensitive skin. The brand’s cream blushes in particular come in an array of hues that work on a variety of skin tones. They’re also a makeup artist and makeup enthusiast favorite. Teen Vogue director of development Mi-Anne Chan says it’s “everything you want a cream blush to be.”

Denton-Hurst also loves Tower 28’s lip gloss, which has a nonsticky-but-still-glossy feel: “I keep the clear in heavy rotation but also like the nude shade, Cashew, which gives my lips the slightly pink tinge I’ve been searching for since I saw Christina Milian’s glossy lips in Love Don’t Cost a Thing.”

The Strategist is designed to surface the most useful, expert recommendations for things to buy across the vast e-commerce landscape. Some of our latest conquests include the best acne treatments, rolling luggage, pillows for side sleepers, natural anxiety remedies, and bath towels. We update links when possible, but note that deals can expire and all prices are subject to change.

Everything to Buy at Sephora’s Beauty Insider Holiday Sale