My Interview At Benefit Cosmetics

Monday, 29 May 2017
Last week I was lucky enough to score an interview at beauty super-brand Benefit Cosmetics. As one of my favourite makeup brands ever, I was incredibly excited at the chance to prove myself and score my 'dream career'. A little spoiler alert - I'm pretty certain I didn't get the job for reasons I will expand on later, but I did end up learning a lot about both myself and Benefit as a company throughout the whole process.

Applying for the role

I spend a lot of my time at Benefit counters chatting to the Benebabes who work there, so I've been encouraged several times to apply for a position after mentioning it would be my dream job. On a whim, I finally took the plunge and decided to apply online after noticing vacancies in my local Doncaster and Meadowhall stores. 

The online form itself was basic, so I made sure to really get my passion for Benefit and their products across in my attached cover letter. I did find a little strange how they required a photo to be uploaded as part of the application, however Benefit girls are known for being absolute babes, so I understand they have an ideal image of the girls they like to work there.

The telephone interview

The next morning, I received an email stating that Benefit were really impressed with my application and that a member of the recruitment team would be in touch shortly. I was horrified when I had to answer my phone to an unknown number two days later, but luckily the lovely Abi was really chatty and friendly over the phone.

I was asked a few questions about why I wanted to work for Benefit, then I was caught off guard with a "what product would you be and why?" Lord knows how, but I suddenly had a stroke of genius and came out with Dandelion blush, as I'm soft and sweet, but when you build up my layers I can be quite striking.

Hell knows how I managed to conjure that up, but I managed to pass the telephone stage and my one-on-one interview was arranged for the next week, where I was asked to come in all black.

Meeting the regional manager

I was incredibly nervous to be interviewed by Amy, who is the regional manager for Benefit Cosmetics. She was absolutely lovely, however made it clear that the job was primarily a sales position and I would have to work every weekend (ew.) I was asked to describe scenarios such as dealing with difficult customers and she also commented on my spotty black dress, stating how I would have to wear plain black if I successful in the interview. 

Once she told me I had passed the one-on-one interview and was to come back an hour later for the counter audition, I ran straight to Primark to pick up a set of black trousers and a black t-shirt - I wasn't taking any chances!

The counter audition

This is where everything went swiftly downhill. Myself and two other girls made the cut for the audition, and so were given a quick run-down on some of the popular products by Jaime, the area manager who is one of the most adorable people I have ever met. She explained that we had to go out into Debenhams and get shoppers to come back to the Benefit stand for makeovers. I had read so many blog posts on the audition stage that I thought I was adequately prepared for the traffic-stopping activity. Nope. 

Nobody wanted to come back with me. Over the course of two hours, I must have asked sixty women, but only one girl agreed to let me try some products on her (thank you Hannah! You are a true saviour) however by then I think it was pretty clear to management that I wasn't cut out for the primarily sales-based role. I had managed to sell two products to customers who were already browsing the Benefit counter, however the purpose of the activity was to 'get bums on seats' and I just wasn't capable of doing that, no matter how much I love the products.

Two hours later...

When the audition was over, I was simply told to get my bag and that I did great and was free to go. I waited outside for the other girl to come out so I could chat to her (the third interviewee disappeared halfway through the audition), however after ten minutes I realised she wasn't coming out, and that she had got the job. 

I made my way across Meadowhall to the Benefit counter in Boots, where I told the girl who had encouraged me to apply about the whole disaster. She did the verbal equivalent of stroking my hair and cuddling me better, telling me that it's a difficult job and that I'm still beautiful and fabulous and all those nice things. I realised it wasn't my dream and I really did not want a job so stressful, followed her on Instagram, and bought a Starbucks frappรฉ to cheer myself up.

After talking to some blogging friends, I've been asked whether this means I'm going to boycott the brand. My answer is of course not. I still absolutely love the makeup and the ethics of Benefit, so I see no reason to stop buying from them just because I'm happier in front of the counter than behind it! At the end of the day they are still a business and I'm a beauty blogger, not a saleswoman. 

My dream job would actually be at LUSH anyway.
20 comments on "My Interview At Benefit Cosmetics"
  1. The important is that you gained a new experience and hey there is always a new opportunity right around the next corner.

  2. Well done for doing it though, the Benefit audition can be really harsh! ❤️
    Daisy xx

  3. So glad you wrote this post! That sounds like a really rigourous interview process! You did incredibly to get that far! I interviewed for a sales type job similar to that before and it's so hard to get people to interact with you! I think you did incredibly, you should be very proud of yourself for getting that far!
    PaleGirlRambling xo

  4. Well done for going and getting so far that's an achievement In itself! Xxxx

  5. Well done on getting so far! I used to work at Lush and it's pretty similar so I know how stressful it is! You sound like you gave it a great shot, and you now have that experience and knowledge to take forwards onto whatever comes next.
    Beth xxx
    Adventure & Anxiety

  6. Thank you for writing this post, I never knew what the Benefit interview process was like, it sounds really tough! I've considered applying for a job there myself but honestly reading this I don't think I will, it's rigorous! Congrats on getting so far, it sounds like you did amazingly well! It's really tough to get shoppers to interact with you xx

    Dolly Rocker

  7. Sounds like such a stressful experience; Interviews are always stressful but this one. This audition thing is so weird... I mean the probation period is what is here to test you on how good you'd be for the job, not the interview itself. Weird. ANyway, if you're dream job is elsewhere, go get it! xx corinne

  8. Well done on getting so far into the interview process! It sounds like an emotional rollercoaster, and I'm so proud of you. It sounds incredibly stressful and I'd hate to do that everyday... I had no idea it was like that in the makeup industry!

    Lizzie Bee // Hello Lizzie Bee

  9. You got further than me my love, I would have been stumped at the 'what product would you be'.
    At least you got the experience and you know how the process works.
    Loved this different type of post!

  10. It can be so disheartening but you will have learnt so much from the experience though! And something better will always come along xx

    Sophia x

  11. Well done for writing this post and sharing your experience. You are no doubt a stronger person as a result. Go get that job at Lush ๐Ÿ˜Š, Chloe #TeacupClub

  12. A lot of retail roles comes with sales now, it's so stressful it makes my brain hurt. The two retail roles I've worked in in the past both had sales in them, one of them quite a lot. You have to say things that really don't come naturally to you and it's just not for everyone. It certainly wasn't for me! Don't feel bad, you're still awesome! Also, I think it's bloody amazing that you stuck out the whole thing as I think I would have scarpered like the other interviewee.

  13. That last line absolutely cracked me up! I never realized how intense the pressure is when you apply for one of these jobs, either. The audition process is intense! I'll never turn down someone trying to get me to try on makeup again.


  14. Sorry to hear that you didn't get the job. But I believe everything happens for a reason. That interview sounds nerve wracking. Well done you for going for it and I hope you land your dream job soon ๐Ÿ˜Š๐Ÿ’–๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿป Xx

  15. Its always good to get experience from different interviews at different companies, so dont let it get you down at all! Keep chasing your goals and you'll get there :) X

  16. It sounds like you did a fab job to me! Sometimes we are meant to experience things so we know what we want. I think you should definitely still see it as a positive experience!

    Amina xx |

  17. Giggling at your little LUSH comment at the end! Definitely an experience you can learn from and you've taken it so positively - inspiring post xo

  18. Oh lord that actually sounds like hell! But well done for getting so far
    I work in recruitment so it always fascinates me reading about interviews away from the 'norm'

  19. It's a shame the job was so sales heavy, it's a difficult area to be good in, I've noticed you either have the knack for it or you don't. I am sure you will find something else that will suit you better in future!

    Lauren :) x

  20. What an interesting post! I had no idea an interview for Benefit would be so intense - you'd have to be really good at sales!

    JH |


Every single comment means so much to me, thanks for making me smile! :)