– By Jaime Ganson

When you think of purchasing beauty and make-up products, department stores like Macy’s and Lord & Taylor, with branded counters, and Sephora come to mind.  Local shops in the Boston area also carry these staples and often with special discounts.  You can find unique brands and great customer service from these local shops, that you may not find in a mass retail store.  The next time you are looking for your next great eye shadow, hair spray, or fragrance, try the following:

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Hours: Daily 7 a.m. – 11 p.m.

Think of Ulta as the perfect mix of a neighborhood salon, Sephora, and drugstore. The big store on Route 9 east in Natick has all you need for makeup, skincare, fragrance, nail color, and hair supplies.  They have an in-house salon too for your cut and color needs. Sign up for their Ultamate Rewards and receive weekly discounts in the mail, as well as a catalog of specials.

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Hours: Mon – Fri 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.; Sat 9:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.

Just off the Coolidge Corner T-stop is the beauty supply store, Beauty and Style.  They carry all the brands you like for makeup, hair, and nails — 9 nail polish brands alone!  You really get the feeling of being a valued customer in a special boutique, as you will often find the owners milling around the store willing to help you by recommending products  – old and new – just for you.

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Hours: Mon – Fri 11 a.m. – 7 p.m.; Sat 10 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Sun 12 p.m. – 5 p.m.

Dubbed “a fine cosmetics boutique”, The Beauty Mark has more of an upscale feel to it. The shop carries various specialty beauty products and brands, as well housing a full salon with services for wedding day makeup and even eyelash extensions.  You may spend more on products here, but you’ll receive a true full-service experience.

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Hours: Mon – Sat 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.; Sun 11 a.m. – 6 p.m

When you think of great beauty bargains, you can’t help but mention Sally Beauty.  This is the Mecca for thousands of products and at good prices. You’ll find everything from shampoo and conditioner to make up and skin care.  Sign up for emails and up to three member rewards cards for even more discounts.  There are 8 other stores within 10 miles of the Boston area, including Watertown, Somerville, Lynn, and Quincy.

Jaime is a twenty-something blogger living, working, & shopping in Boston. Interested in all thing things stylish whether it be the latest fashion trend on the runways to the newest decor featured in home magazines, she blogs all about it, and tidbits of her life, at La vie…J’aime. Follow her on Twitter and Pinterest, as well.