I decided to be nice and make an entire list of places you can shop for makeup in NYC so if you live here or are ever visiting you can plan out your shopping day! I know a lot of tourists often want to know where to shop for makeup in New York City, and since it’s a little running joke among my friends that I know all the makeup spots in town, I hope this helps someone else. If you can’t make it to NY then I also included the website links so you can shop online instead!
322 West 49th Street (Between 8th and 9th ave)
This tiny gem of a store is my favorite shop to go in! They are located in the heart of the Theater District and I love them, the staff is super friendly and helpful as well as knowledgable in the products they sell – I can be in and out in under 10 minutes if I have a list ready to go! The prices are very fair without any pro discounts and they carry their own brand that is the same professional quality makeup we all know and love, in super cute packaging! Make sure to pick up their makeup remover wipes and do not miss their disposable sponges, they’re like little disposable beauty blenders! This is their main location, but they also have a warehouse in Long Island City that is open to the public during the week.
590 Broadway in SoHo
*This is just my favorite location, they have a ton of stores in the city
Ricky’s reminds me of Alcone’s laid back little sister, they carry a nice mix of products but they specialize in hair more than makeup. They sell hard to find Special Effects hair dye and specialty hair care products. For Halloween they offer a ton of Special F/X makeup such as Mehron, Ben Nye, and Graftobian at pretty great prices and they offer a huge selection of false eye lashes too! This is my go to store when I am looking for products people consider “online only”, they also just started carrying Dose of Colors!
Kenig + Alcone
638 6th Ave
Ricky’s NYC and Alcone had a baby and this store is it! A two story sophisticated gem in the city well stocked with hair care products down stairs, and makeup upstairs. They carry a great variety of hard to find brands and unique hair clips, you can often find Ricky Kenig himself at the register and helping customers along with his daughters in store. You always feel welcome walking in here, and everything is so neat and clean it makes shopping a breeze. They also have a salon inside if you need to get your hair done.
*Union Square is my favorite.
We all know and love Sephora, so no lengthy descriptions here. The Union Square and Time Square staff know how to handle their crowds and still offer friendly service. The selection here is huge and sometimes never ending, but at this location the nail bars and testers are always stocked and readily available. There seems to be a Sephora in every zip code in Manhattan so you’ll be sure to find one easily.
60 E 14th Street
Located right in the heart of Union Square this little hidden gem of a place keeps loads of NYX products in stock (regular prices), as well as Urban Decay, Lorac, Too Face, OPI, Stila and other brands products all at a discount price! This location is pretty small but well stocked and easy to find the products you want, the selection is always changing so if you live in the city come often for the best deals. I have scored $60 palettes for $15 plenty of times!
505 8th Avenue
(No online shopping)
A little hidden gem right around the corner from Penn Station, this place is well stocked full of wigs, hair products, makeup and much much more. The prices are great and kept fair and some things are downright cheap. This is the place to get Essie and OPI polishes! They not only carry hard to find colors but they offer both brands at $5 and $6 a bottle! They have a huge selection of NYX products and Jordana and have testers for both! The staff knows their store and can help you find anything you need. This place closes pretty early for a NYC store though so make it one of your first stops!
15 E. 37th St
(No website or online shopping)
Another hidden gem but this one is near Grand Central Station, I like to think of this place like a TJMaxx for makeup, you never know what you’re going to get, but it will be cheap. This store is for the bargain shopper and not the place to go if you want top customer service (the staff is very nice but they are not very knowledgeable about cosmetics) Some items have been known to be open or ruined, so shop carefully but you will be happy you did because they offer fantastic prices especially on drug store brands but, you can find high end brands at drug store prices as well!
Makeup Forever (MUFE)
8 E. 12th St.
Most people know this brand so not much description here, but this store carries almost the entire line of MUFE products, has a friendly and knowledgeable staff, and its easy to apply for a backstage or pro card here. Pros get 40% off!
Obsessive Compulsive Cosmetics (OCC)
174 Ludlow St
Small store, but well stocked, they offer makeup lessons (call ahead) for a fee and then let you trade in the fee for OCC products! One of my favorite makeup lines ever, bring lots of money and definitely stock up on their lip tars and pure pigments.
My favorite eye shadows! Inglot offers a setup similar to MAC and they only carry their brand. This store is often out of stock of a few of the more popular colors but the ability to try and see every color at once is not only amazing and can be downright overwhelming if you never been here before. The store is small for being in Times Square but it’s always clean and organized and the staff is great here. The quality of their products is highly comparable to MAC but at a fraction of the price! They carry their stuff in the Macy’s down on 34th street as well and they also have a location in the Chelsea Market building over on 14th and 9th Ave (5th floor) that is better stocked, offers a mixing pigment station, nail bar, and a beautiful view of the city.
413 Bleecker St
Another favorite of mine, I stay away from here because it’s dangerous to my budget! This store is beautiful because it is always neat, clean, and organized. The store is a bit small and I found this store wandering around SoHo one day! The staff here is great not only are they really friendly but they are also very helpful if you don’t know what you really want, I have never been here on a weekend but I hear it can be a zoo!
99 Greene St
Sephora’s European cousin! You can find a lot of hard to find brands and products here and they carry a bigger selection of brands like Laura Mercier and Nars than Sephora does. I mostly come here for Kevyn Aucoin and Oribe products because I don’t really find them anywhere else. Nice little pit stop if you have some free time or need something specific that isn’t carried anywhere else
There are actually way more stores for makeup shopping in NYC including local beauty supply stores and free standing brand stores but these are my top favorites! We also have Benefit, MAC, ELF, Kett, and don’t forget to visit the Container Store, IKEA, and Muji to score makeup organization to store all your new purchases!