Ordering from Sephora Online from South Africa

Hi Ladies

Sephora, The Beauty Authority which is sort of a unicorn to us in South Africa is now within reach!

Sephora South Africa

Yes, you heard me right! You can now order from Sephora Online. Yay!

I have been lucky enough to travel overseas a couple of times and found myself standing in that black and white money gulper surrounded by all things beauty. But, that is at most once a year, and that is obviously not enough to get my beauty fix. Yes, I am a beauty addict, and no I do not have a problem.

Let me give you the breakdown of what I ordered from Sephora, and how you can do the same:

Sephora deliver to South Africa

I bought the Becca Opal Glow on the Go set, which contains the Shimmering Skin Perfector Opal in both pressed and poured. A Tarte Cheek Set, Makeup Forever Eyeliner Duo and Urban Decay Eyeliner Pencil Travel Set.

sephora international credit cards

I also got a couple of samples, which is what Sephora is known for!

Ordering from Sephora Online from South Africa

Now, let me break down the process for you:

1) Register for Aramex Global Shopper (AGS) here. (You will get 14 addresses in different countries from New York to Hong Kong). There is a once-off lifetime membership fee, which I think is about $45. If you are not happy with the service you can cancel for a full refund within 12 months, which is pretty awesome.

2) Sign up on Sephora.com

3) Add your US New York Aramex Global address as your default billing and shipping address

4) Use the telephone number provided by AGS as your telephone number on sephora.com

5) Put your AGS account number in one of the address lines on sephora.com, this is so AGS can identify your parcel when it arrives at the hub.

6) And Shop! Add everything you want to your basket, choose your samples, and go all the way to checkout at the end, because taxes will only be added at the end. I ordered enough to qualify for free shipping, which always helps. But if your order is under $50 you will be charged shipping. Try and buy enough to qualify for free shipping, since you still have AGS shipping to pay for.

7) Now you need to buy a Sephora Gift Card, which you can do here. The gift card buying service is operated by another site which accepts Paypal. Because Sephora does not accept International Credit Cards or Paypal directly, using a Gift Card is the only way to make payment.

8) Choose the value of the gift card based on the value of your cart. Remember to go all the way to the checkout page to include taxes! I bought a gift card, and then I had to buy another one, because I didn’t have enough for taxes. Luckily you can use more than one gift card per order.

9) Enter your email address, and soon you will have your gift card.

10) Then go back to the Sephora Checkout Page. On the right of the payment box, there is a section for Promo Codes and Gift Cards. Click on Use a gift card, enter your card number and pin from your Gift Card email.

11) You can also find Promo Codes here to get some extra goodies! You just enter the Promo Code above the Gift Card Number.

12) And that is all! It is a bit of a mission, but it is so worth it!

13) You will get an email from Sephora once your order has been shipped

14) You will get an email from AGS once your order has arrived at the US hub

15) You will get another email from AGS once your package is on its way to South Africa. You can now make payment. All shipping and custom charges (if any) can be paid at once. I luckily didn’t have to pay any customs charges. The shipping cost for the first 1/2 kg is R175 and every additional 1/2 kg is R99. It isn’t the cheapest, but considering you get your order in less than a week, from stores that don’t ship to SA, I think it is worth it! Just bear in mind the shipping cost when you are adding heavy items to your cart. My order weighed more than 1/2 kg, so I had to pay R274 shipping costs and I got my order in less than a week, with updates along the way.

Happy Shopping Ladies!

I have rejoined Twitter, so follow me and let’s chat.

P.S. Please bear in mind that this was my first and only time so far using Aramex Global. I do intend placing another order from Sephora Online soon, and I am hoping it works as smoothly again. I can’t say for sure that Sephora will accept your order, or that you won’t get charged customs, but it worked for me.

I have since ordered again from Sephora using Aramex Global, and this time it wasn’t as smooth, it was stopped by customs and needed a commercial invoice. And I had to pay 50% of my order value in customs and vat charges. But, I received my package, you can check it out in my March Haul.

UPDATE: I have ordered more than 5 times from Sephora using Aramex Global, and I have had to pay customs every single time. My one package ended up in India so I only received it 2 weeks later. Delayed delivery and bad customer service seems like the norm these days. If you haven’t already signed up with Aramex, I would recommend trying out Post Box Courier, it is more expensive, but the service is way better, and you can combine orders into one shipment.

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This Post Has 78 Comments

  1. Roselyn Veerasamy

    I want to buy cosmetics online

  2. safwaan Moosa

    Nice !!

  3. Chrissy Wilson

    Live in KwaZulu-Natal and would be so excited to have the opportunity to buy online

  4. Hedri

    Hi, I was just wondering if everyone knows about https://www.cultbeauty.co.uk/ ? I have ordered from them roughly four times now, and it takes about 3 weeks for my order to arrive. I use Paypal to pay, and I quite like that I seem to get all my favourite brands like Anastasia through them. They also now stock TooFaced. If you order from them before midnight tomorrow, they have a code that will give you £5 off… it is FAVOURITE15. Some of their brands have free shipping, but otherwise you need to buy for £40.

    1. admin

      I haven’t, but I know of a few people who have. They have a great selection of products!

  5. Dipuo

    Hi. Can you please recommend places I can buy international brands in South Africa. There’s so many, and I’ve seen some that look dodgy. Any reputable resellers would be much appreciated

    1. R

      hey, you can try @thelittleblaqboutique on instagram!

      1. admin

        I haven’t heard of them before, thanks for the information. I prefer to buy overseas, as so many of them sell fake products.

    2. admin

      Hi, I have heard that Muse S.A. and Samika are legit, but I don’t buy any international brands locally as I just don’t trust any to be honest. I prefer to buy overseas. I do have a few items on my blog sale though if you are interested.

  6. Hedri

    I have used ABSA and FNB recently, and then the order would get cancelled, but if I called them thereafter to do the same order, they would process without a hitch… Which banks card did you use?

    1. R

      called who? your bank or sephora

      1. Hedri

        My apologies, that was confusing. I called the Sephora helpline. Waiting was roughly four minutes, but the sales consultant that answered was really friendly. She recreated my exact order, and warned me that the actual processing takes up to 48 hours, and that I would then get the shipped email. I placed the order on a Friday afternoon and the shipped email came through on Sunday.

        1. R

          Thank you for clarifying. So how did you make payment and which address did you use ?

          1. Hedri

            I made payment with an Absa credit card and shipped it to a friend that lives in the states.

    2. admin

      I have been using PayPal which is linked to fnb. And it works perfectly!

  7. Zakeeyak

    Hi! I recently ordered from Sephora (it’s shipping to the US – I have a friend there) but I decided to take a chance and use my credit card. It went through without a hitch (although the bank called a few times to confirm). Seems like they’re starting to allow other cards? At least that saves the whole gift card schlep.

    1. admin

      Hi Zakeeya! I have been using PayPal recently and it is pretty easy and less of a mission. Glad it worked for you! X

  8. monkie lekaba

    Do you sell 3D makeup?

    1. admin

      Hi, no I don’t sell makeup. I do have a blog sale though, but no 3D Makeup.

  9. monkie


    do you guys have a 3D make up?

  10. Muazza

    Hi. I tried the gift card method however my order was cancelled as the Aramex address was picked up as a Freight Forwarding Address. Did you perhaps hack your address to include an extra symbol or word so as to not match their system check?

    1. admin

      Hi, nope I used the address exactly how it was on Aramex. Not sure how they pick it up, two people tried it recently and it worked.

  11. Kirshnee

    Hi, loved this post. Would love to give it a go, did you have to submit an importers code for customs clearance with Aramex?

  12. Revishka Rupan

    Hi, I’ve also tried to order and it has been cancelled, but on checkout I used pay pal. Does your shipping address on pay pal have to be your AGS or your south african one? Also are you using a debit/credit card and do you think using an american express card would make any difference? also quite skeptical to use the gift card method since its non-refundable. Thanks x

    1. admin

      My PayPal shipping address is the same as AGS. I used a visa fnb. The two people that if worked for recently used a gift card, so I am not sure. And when I first tried it I used a gift card too.

  13. Vidur

    Does your paypal account have to be registered to your AGS address ?


    1. admin

      My PayPal shipping address is the same as AGS. I used a visa fnb. The two people that if worked for recently used a gift card, so I am not sure. And when I first tried it I used a gift card too.

  14. Merce

    OMG! Prettiest hack around Sephora’s tight rules that I have ever seen.
    I came across this when I googled “Sephora in Africa”.
    Now i will certainly follow your blog for these & more, thank you.

    1. admin

      Oh pleasure, I am glad it worked for you! What did you get? Haha, I don’t know if it is a good thing or a bad thing, since I am not shopping way too much 🙂

  15. Bahiya

    Hi, have you ordered recently? Does it still work?

    1. admin

      Hi. Yes, I just ordered yesterday. It does still work.

      1. Bahiya

        Did you use PayPal this time or still the gift card service?

        1. admin

          I have used both in the past 2 weeks and both have worked.

  16. Sally

    Hi I was just wondering if you have shipped from Sephora recently as I have just tried and they said it was unsuccessful basically they didn’t like the shipping address I used aramex
    Anyway was just wondering if you have used either aramex or post box courier recently with an Sephora purchase?

    1. admin

      Hi Sally, yes I bought about 2 weeks ago and it worked 🙂

      1. Sally

        Hi thank you so much for getting back to me:)

        Which company did u use ? Aramex or post box?

        And did u pay with the gift card again?

        1. Benita

          I successfully place my eGift Card order on Sephora and pay via PayPal but I keep on getting an email from Sephora/ Cashstar saying “We’re sorry. We were unable to process your eGift Card order from Sephora”. Do you perhaps have any idea why I keep getting that response?

          1. admin

            Hi, unfortunately I have no idea, I have never had that issue

        2. admin

          I used Aramex, and the exact same method using the gift card etc. 🙂

  17. Benita

    Hi there,

    Have you ordered from Sephora again since your post and if so, what address do you use? I am so afraid to purchase the gift cards (which are not refundable) and then my order is declined by Sephora due to the address being from a freight forwarding company (I have contacted them and they replied saying they do not allow shipping to freight forwarding addresses)…

  18. zara

    Hi my name is Zara I also live in south africa I’m trying to follow ur steps but when I go to buy my gift card and put the zip code they say the code is invalid any idea what does that mean or how should I sort it out
    Many thanks

    1. admin

      Hi. Uhm I have no idea. But you shouldn’t need a zip code to buy a gift card. Are you buying it off the cash star site?

  19. Hedri

    I have managed to get the Becca/ Jacklyn Hill champagne pop highlighter from Sandton Beccacosmetics . They dont always get everything, but you at least have a chance to get some Becca stuff…

    1. admin

      Yip they have a good range of the permanent collection, but I wish they had the limited edition products! ?

  20. Karen

    What is the exact address you usec when you ordered?

    1. admin

      I used my Aramex Account Number, and then the Aramex New York Address, and the Aramex phone number.

  21. Anye

    Hi, came across your blog while looking if Sephora ships to SA. I already have an Aramex account and used it to buy Colourpop cosmetics. Worked out great. My only concern is if you buy a makeup palette that it would break during shipping. Can you recall if they repackaged your packet? I did email Aramex, but its been a week and they have not responded. (They did not repackage my Colourpop package, but it did not contain anything that could break.)

    1. admin

      Nope, they don’t repackage it as far as I know, well they haven’t for my orders. I just bought the Becca Jaclyn Hill Palette and it came in one piece, thankfully. Perhaps give Aramex a call?

      1. Anye

        Thanks for the quick reply. I was looking to buy that exact palette! That one is packaged quite well, so think it might make it.

        1. admin

          It came packaged in bubble wrap, so it should be okay. 🙂

      2. Euneen


        i also want to buy the Jaclyn Hill Becca pallette. Did you use your Aramex address? Cause i am now worried about Nomonde’s comment above about not being able to ship to an aramex address. 🙁

        1. admin

          Hey Euneen, yup I used my aramex address. Well as far as I know you can get a refund for the gift card if they won’t ship to you.

  22. Nomonde Ntinga


    I followed your advice step by step. WEELLL… my order keeps being cancelled because the address i was given by AGS is not a residential address. I called Sephora and they explained to me that they do not deliver to shipping addresses, only residential and USPS.

    Spent so much of money and now i cant get my products here. Its so fustrating.

    1. admin

      Hi Nomonde, I am sorry it didn’t work for you. That is why I put at the end of the post that I cannot guarantee that it will work. You can ask Sephora for a refund for your gift card though, or if you know anyone overseas you can get your stuff delivered to them. Sorry 🙁

  23. Jess Harper

    What was the value of your order?
    I know customs in SA is really hectic so I would like to avoid paying it.

    1. admin

      It was about R600, definitely over R500. Customs is so temperamental.

  24. Marné

    Whaaaaaaaat, clever girl, this is brilliant! Will bookmark this post of yours for easy access when I eventually decide what to order first 😉

    1. admin

      Hehe thanks! Good idea, oh my shopping list is so so long!

  25. Jamie

    How much did you have to pay in taxes/customs

    1. admin

      Hi Jamie, I didn’t pay customs on this order.

  26. Bell

    I will like to purchased some makeup products.

    1. admin

      Hi. What would you like to buy?

  27. Euneen

    Love your creative solution to the “problem”! I signed up for Aramex a while back and have been wanting to make a purchase from Sephora when I heard you cannot pay with Paypal or credit card. I will definitely be trying your way. Thanks for sharing!

    1. admin

      Good Luck Euneen! Let me know how it works out 🙂

  28. Lucinda Singh

    Thanks 4 letting us know your experience. I have the membership but im yet to use it… will def give it a try soon 🙂

    1. admin

      Awesome, lemme know how it goes!

  29. Valencia

    Sounds a bit complex but will give it a try

    1. admin

      It is complex, but so worth it!

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