How To Get Ulta Cosmetics Shipped To Canada

April 1, 2020
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Shipping Ulta cosmetics and beauty supplies to Canada used to be a hassle, but not anymore. This post lays out a dead-simple process for getting your order from Ulta—or any other U.S. retailer—shipped right to your doorstep in Canada with zero trouble and minimal fees.

Ulta is one of the largest and most well-respected beauty retailers in the world. Founded in 1990, Ulta operates more than a thousand stores across all 50 US states. Each Ulta store also has its own salon, brow bar by Benefit, and skin bar by Dermalogica. Ulta employs over 35,000 store associates, nearly all of whom are female. 

Ulta sells thousands of unique products within skincare, fragrance, nail, bath, body, and haircare. It carries the big brands you’d expect, like MAC and Estée Lauder, plus hundreds of small and boutique brands, like Kylie Cosmetics and The Ordinary.   

Ulta Canada

Does Ulta Ship to Canada?

No, Ulta only ships within the USA. However, I’ve designed a process for getting any Ulta order shipped to Canada with zero headaches. Here’s that process, explained step-by-step.

How To Get Ulta Orders Shipped To Canada

Since Ulta doesn’t ship to Canada directly, you need to use a package forwarder: a warehouse in the United States that will accept your Ulta package and forward it on to you in Canada. Here’s how to make it work.

Step 1: Choose A Package Forwarder

Choosing the right package forwarder is a big deal, because that decision will determine how quickly you get your Ulta order, and how much you have to pay for the service. I spent many hours doing some deep research on eight different package forwarders, scoring each of them on a wide variety of relevant metrics. Here are five of the main metrics I looked at:

  • Service Fees: How much do they charge to provide their core service of accepting and shipping packages, plus ancillary services such as long-term storage, re-packing, package consolidation, and more.
  • Monthly/Annual Fees: How much do they charge in monthly or annual fees, if at all.
  • Pricing Transparency: How much do I know about their pricing structure before sending a product to their warehouse.
  • Speed: How quickly will they process my package.
  • Customer Service: How satisfied are other users with their service, and how thoroughly/quickly do they respond to my questions.

After reviewing the data I collected on these and other metrics, it became clear to me that Planet Express was the best choice. Their customer service team responded to my emails quickly and thoroughly, they have thousands of 5-star reviews online, and their fees were consistently lower than all of the other package forwarders I looked at.

Planet Express Canada
The Planet Express homepage

Here are a few other things I like about Planet Express:

  • Planet Express has a tax-free warehouse in Oregon, so you can avoid paying sales tax on your orders.
  • Planet Express will consolidate multiple packages into a single box, saving you a significant amount on shipping when you make multiple purchases.
  • Planet Express sends you free photos of your package as soon as it arrives at their warehouse.
  • Planet Express offers extremely cheap storage for your packages. Every package receives 10 days of free storage, but after that, Planet Express only charges one cent per pound per day. That means storing 1 lb of Ulta products—perhaps some foundation, a can of hairspray, and a few different colours of nail polish—in their warehouse for a month would only cost you $0.30!

Step 2: Ship Your Ulta Order To Planet Express 

As soon as you’ve signed up for Planet Express, you’ll receive a unique mailing address at their warehouse. Once you find the Ulta products you like, just enter your Planet Express mailing address instead of your home mailing address and you’re all set.

Step 3: Forward Your Package

As soon as your Ulta order arrives at Planet Express’ warehouse, they’ll send you photos of the package to let you know it’s arrived. You’ll also be given a series of shipping options to choose from. I find that there’s generally at least 4 shipping options corresponding to 4 different price-speed combinations. Sometimes there can be as many as 10 or more shipping options—it just depends on the weight and size of your package.

Planet Express Shipping Options Canada
Four of the shipping options I was presented with for my order. There were much faster shipping options available as well, but I chose a slower, cheaper option, since I wasn’t in a rush.

My Personal Experience Shipping Ulta Beauty Products To Canada

I’ve used Planet Express a handful of times to ship Ulta beauty products to Canada, and the experience has always been very smooth. Here’s how things went the last time I did it.

First, I found the products I wanted on Ulta.com. Since I’m buying the products for a cousin of mine and not for myself, I generally just ask her to send me a few links to what she wants—Ulta has such an incredibly large selection that choosing something on my own would be next to impossible.

Ulta Canada

Second, I ordered the products to my unique address at the tax-free Planet Express warehouse in Oregon. Less than 24 hours later, I received an email from Planet Express letting me know that my order had arrived. This remarkable speed is partly due to Ulta’s extremely fast shipping, and partly due to Planet Express’ extremely fast processing. Some of the other package forwarders I tested took 2-3 days just to process my incoming packages, so this is very quick. 

Third, I filled in Planet Express’ super-easy customs declaration form with the four pieces of information required:

  1. The item being shipped: “Makeup”
  2. The number of items: “1”
  3. The value of the item: “$50”
  4. Whether the item contains batteries: “No” 
Planet Express Customs Declaration Canada

Then I chose the shipping option I wanted from a list of eight. Prices ranged from $6-$35 USD, plus insurance at an additional $2 USD, so I chose the cheapest one ($8 USD, including the insurance), and I was done. My order was shipped out later that same day. When it arrived, I didn’t have to pay duties upon arrival, and it was in perfect shape.

The Costs

In my experience, the price I paid ($6 USD + $2 USD in insurance) is pretty standard for shipping Ulta beauty products to Canada. I’ve never had to pay any import taxes or duties on my Ulta orders, though it’s possible that you’ll have to, especially if you’re placing a large order. 

Ulta + Honey = Greater Savings

Honey is a browser extension that automatically finds you coupon codes for thousands of online stores. It crowdsources coupon codes from users and the Internet at large to offer you the best deals every time you shop online. Honey is completely passive and completely free—just install the Honey plugin, and whenever you reach the checkout page of a store Honey has codes for, it will automatically apply every code in its database to find you the best deal.

Honey Browser Extension Canada

On top of working on Ulta.com, Honey has discount codes for over 5,000 online stores, including marketplaces like eBay and Etsy, big-box stores like Best Buy, Walmart and Target, online titans like GoDaddy, Microsoft, Udemy and Adobe, and even offers the odd discount on Amazon. You won’t find a working code every time you try, but I can’t count how many times I’ve saved 10% or more thanks to Honey.

Sign up for Honey (free!) using this link and you’ll receive an extra 500 Honey Gold (worth $5) after your first purchase using a Honey discount code.

In Summary

Overall, shipping Ulta beauty products to Canada using Planet Express is extremely easy and smooth. The costs are low, and in my experience you’ll actually end up saving money, since Ulta’s prices can be much lower than those of Canadian beauty and cosmetics retailers. If you’re shopping on Ulta.com, or any other retailer that only ships to the USA, I highly suggest making use of Planet Express.