"Can I Return This, Please?"

by PJ on Tuesday, July 3, 2007

in makeup,skincare,What do you think? Beauty topics and thoughts

Drying lipsticks…mascaras that clump like crazy…moisturizers that break you out…I am sure you have come across things that are simply not good enough for you.

What can you do? Well, apart from putting them on eBay, it depends on where you are.

I live in the UK. Here, in almost all cases, once I open the packaging of a skincare/makeup/haircare product, I am not able to return it and get any money back (not even store credit). I can only get a full refund (within 28 days with the receipt) if the product is unused and the packaging is intact. (One of the exceptions that I am aware of is QVC UK, which obviously inherits the return policy from the US.)

It can be worse than this. I once bought a pressed powder in Debenhams (a chained department store in the UK). A couple of days later, with the outer packaging still completely intact, I decided I wanted to return it.

I couldn’t. I could only have an exchange. Their store policy says that, once purchased, no cosmetics item can be refunded.

I find it rather ridiculous, even though I have always been used to the fact that, cosmetics-wise, once I buy and start using something, I am basically stuck with it.

I have never lived in the US, and I remember being surprised when I came across people from the US on makeup forums saying that they were going to return products they ended up not liking.

I think it probably has something to do with the health and safety regulations in the UK, so I don’t expect things to change overnight. I am also aware that the return policies vary from retailer to retailer in the US. But certainly shops in the US are generally much more customer-friendly in this respect, I have to say…

What about the situation where you are? Any interesting/ridiculous story?