Ulta, Bath & Body Works, CeraVe, Elf Cosmetics and SheaMoisture among teenage beauty favorites, survey finds

  • Ulta is still the most popular beauty store for all teenage girls, according to a biannual survey.
  • Bath & Body Works is the first choice for perfumes and fragrances.

Ulta, Bath & Body Works, Elf Cosmetics, SheaMoisture and CeraVe are the most popular beauty retailers and brands among teenage girls in the United States, as revealed by Piper Sandler’s biannual Gen Z survey.

The investment bank’s ‘Taking Stock with Teens’ report tracks brands’ preferences, behaviors and habits – including spending on cosmetics, skincare, fragrance and haircare – and where teens love most do their shopping.

Of all the beauty categories, teens spent the most on skincare: $103 per year. Cosmetics followed at $96, but those who report wearing makeup every day spent $155 a year on cosmetics. This rises to $187 for upper-income teenage girls; 50% of them say they wear make-up every day.

Here are the most popular beauty stores and brands ranked by teenage girls in the United States.

Favorite beauty store: Ulta

Ulta ranked as the most popular “beauty destination” for 42% of all teenage girls surveyed.

Other popular beauty retailers for teenage girls in the fall survey are: Sephora, Target, Walmart, Amazon, Shein, CVS, Walgreens, Elf and Sally.

The survey found that 39% of teenage girls are members of a beauty loyalty program, with Ulta’s ULTAmate rewards accounting for 62% of the total. Beauty loyalty program memberships at Ulta are down slightly this season compared to the Spring 2022 survey.

Favorite cosmetics brand: Elf Cosmetics

elf beauty

The top 10 cosmetics brands for all teenage girls, including the richest and most affluent, are: Elf, Maybelline, L’Oréal, Tarte, Fenty Beauty, Sephora, Rare Beauty, Charlotte Tilbury, Ulta and Morphe.

Elf continued to rank as the most popular makeup brand for all teenage girls, maintaining its rank from Piper Sandler’s Spring 2022 survey and overtaking Maybelline from the Fall 2021 survey.

Favorite skincare brand: CeraVe

Ulta, Bath & Body Works, CeraVe, Elf Cosmetics and SheaMoisture among teenage beauty favorites, survey finds
Smith/Gado/Getty Images Collection

CeraVe, which is owned by L’Oréal, grew in popularity this year compared to 2021 and ranked as the most popular skincare brand for 42% of teenage girls, far ahead of the second favorite brand, Cetaphil, at 9%.

The top 10 is completed by: The Ordinary, Neutrogena, Drunk Elephant, La Roche-Posay, Curology, Clinique, Dove and Aveeno.

Favorite perfume brand: Bath & Body Works

Ulta, Bath & Body Works, CeraVe, Elf Cosmetics and SheaMoisture among teenage beauty favorites, survey finds
Mary Meisenzahl / Insider

A new category in Piper Sandler’s fall 2022 survey was teenage girls’ 10 favorite fragrance brands. Bath & Body Works ranked first among the wealthiest and wealthiest teenage girls. Of the 6,670 teenage girls surveyed, 29% of high-income teenage girls and 40% of middle-income teenage girls chose Bath & Body Works as their preferred source of fragrance.

Then come Bath & Body Works: Victoria’s Secret, Sol de Janeiro, Ariana Grande, Chanel, Marc Jacobs, Dior, Gucci, Yves Saint Laurent and Burberry.

Upper-income teenage girls spend slightly less on fragrance at $62 per year, compared to $67 per year spent on fragrance by middle-income teenage girls.

Favorite hair care brand: SheaMoisture

Ulta, Bath & Body Works, CeraVe, Elf Cosmetics and SheaMoisture among teenage beauty favorites, survey finds
Shea Moisture products are under Sundial LLCBennett Raglin/Getty Images

There was only a minor difference in annual hair care expenditure between teenage girls with middle and higher incomes. While higher-income teenage girls spent $93 last fall on hair care products, middle-income teenage girls spent $91 a year.

SheaMoisture launched Olaplex as the top choice for all teenage girls, including those with higher incomes. However, Olaplex was the most popular hair care brand for 14% of upper-income teenage girls and the second most popular for middle-income teenage girls.

Also on the list of top hair care brands for teenage girls: Pantene, Aussie, Dove, L’Oreal, Garnier, Cantu Beauty, Moroccan Oil and Redken.

Donovan B. Sanford