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Post in Beauty Advisors

Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

   

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

"I went on a shopping spree 6 months ago and bought soooo much stuff. Some I knew I wouldn't use and returned within a month or two."

 

really? Really? 

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

Yes. Really. Hope my pm clarified what i'm assuming was an incorrect assumption.

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Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

Why would you buy something you knew you wouldn't use?

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

Not the original commenter, but I believe she decided that AFTER purchasing. Like bought stuff, came home, and realized she wasn't going to use it. Then returned it as soon as she had a chance. 

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

That's the impression I got as well.  Plus, some things you buy hoping that you'll be able to use them and then realizing after that you just can't or won't.  While samples are great, you can't get a sample of a sponge or brush.  Those items are tough to be sure about too since there aren't as many reviews, you can't swatch them, and the only real way to know if you'll like/use it is to try it after buying it.

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

A million times yes, thank you. I replied to both of these ladies in PM since I couldn't actually 'reply' on this thread earlier

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

this comment makes the most sense out of all of the rest. There is no max on returns, its all up to discretion. 

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

There actually is a max on returns without receipts.  The SA may agree to do the return, but if the system rejects, it cannot be returned.

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

I also want to add, for those who return a lot like me and for those who are mulling saying the return policy sucks (depending on stores, except I will still refuse to shop at Wet Seal and Forever 21 for their return policies) 

This is America. We're more liberal on the returns and consumer friendly. In Taiwan, they get really mad and lecture you according to my mom and no one really returns in Australia according to my cousins. 

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

Not that this relates directly to the OP's story, but I wish we could reach a happy middle ground, as I tend to think we are too consumer friendly. We let people take advantage of polices and get their way if they cause a fuss. I worked in retail for years and saw so many people abuse our system because it was absolutely unacceptable to corporate if we received ANY negative feedback about customer service, regardless if the customer was being unreasonable. Yet of course, when numbers were bad, we were also blamed. 

 

Unrelated and slightly tangenty, but its crazy how many grown adults with throw tantrums in stores because they don't get to use an expired coupon. It's even more soul-crushing when you see managers give in and give them the discount PLUS some to try and make them happy. 

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

I agree! All it does is re-enforce that type of behavior! So now, that person will continue to act like that because they know it will get them what they want. 

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

I agree re: the middle ground.  As someone who has worked in retail and has seen both the best and worst of customer complaints, I think there's a fine line between a reasonable request for proper customer service and outright bullying of CS reps/abuse of store policies.  The U.S. really does have the most accommodating CS practices that I've seen; I think some customers here take that for granted and forget that "good customer service" does not necessarily mean always getting your way, especially if "your way" goes beyond what can be reasonably expected of a store. 

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

I agree so much I cannot stand it.  Bending over backwards no matter how unreasonably entitled a customer gets makes me so frustrated.  I've seen customers get just about every ridiculous thing they concoct just to keep them happy.  When I rule the world, I will put an end to this.  There's no excuse for the way SAs get mistreated...over nothing...over less than a dollar.

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

Annec, you have my vote for supreme world leader. 

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

Yep, in Australia most return policies are void once you open the product, or only valid for unopened products for a very short period of time (often as short as a week). Obvious exceptions would be if there's actually a fault with the item, etc. I've returned things incredibly rarely, and never in the cosmetics/skincare arena. Once it was a top I bought for an event I didn't go to, so I returned it under the 'change of mind with tags attached' clause, and from memory I once returned something with obvious flaws such as buttons coming off the first time I used it or something. Since I've been in Canada I've been very grateful for the great return policies, so I'm more willing to try things out with a view to returning them if my skin reacts or something. I don't abuse it, but it's nice to know the safety net is there if something goes wrong.

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

I'm from Canada too, and I was a bit shocked when I found out that Sephora has such a, shall we say, generous exchange policy. Most other places won't accept items back like you said, once they're opened (for sanitary reasons more than anything else, as well as the fact that they wouldn't be able to sell them to someone else). I agree with other posters that there should be a middle ground for Sephora's return policy, too.

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

So many opinions. I would like to reply to some, but my computer is against me in that one Smiley Sad

 

I don't think anyone is bashing the returning something. I think you should shop happy and return just as happy. My sister works in retail, and the tales of returns are terrible and shameful, at the point I couldn't believe someone would do some of those things.

 

The sad part it's that my sister is required a daily sales quota, and every time someone returns something to her she is penalized just for taking the return, even if she wasn't the sales girl.

 

I can tell for Sephora, as I think the losses are on the manufacturer, and then on us consumers, as the manufacturer raises prices to cut losses.

 

But the fact is we as consumers should use good judgment while returning, and keep in mind we're not affecting Sephora, the big guy, but many little people that work for Sephora and the brands.

 

As always, using is good, abusing is not.  

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

It sounds like the customer service interaction/communication was less than ideal (although you may be presenting the situation in a skewed manner based on your perception of the situation).  But even if the customer service was not ideal, it doesn't change what you did, which was return $200 worth of products!  That seems like a lot to me, especially if you consider that if everyone did that, Sephora would likely not be able to have the awesome return policy that they have.  It's one thing to return products that have never been used or opened, but it's an entirely different scenario to return hundreds of dollars of products that have been used (even if it's slightly used or just opened).  I have to hope that Sephora discards all items that have even the slightest indication of being used, so that means that all the items you returned that are even slightly used, will get thrown away.  Like I said before, if everyone did that and treated Sephora like a library, it would no longer be financially feasible for them to have the return policy that they have now.  In my mind, to walk into Sephora with a ziplock full of used items with the purpose of returning them for store credit in order to "purchase more desired items" is incredibly wasteful and selfish.  

 

Now, do I return things and take advantage of Sephora's awesome return policy?  You bet I do, but I'm extremely discerning with the items I buy and return.  If at all possible, I get a sample of the product first to try it out before buying it.  Or I read reviews, check ingredients, look at shades, etc. to find out if it's a product I'm likely to keep.  Yes all those things take time to do, but I feel like it's better than buying things at the drop of a hat just because you can return it later.  Sometimes I do end up with a product I thought would work out, but ends up not working out, so in that case I do take advantage of the return policy.

 

I apologize if I've repeated what others have said, which I'm sure I have.  But I think it's helpful to hear things repeatedly from different people so that you can see it's more than just a few people ganging up on you.  We're not trying to gang up on you or make you feel bad (although everyone is entitled to their own feelings). We're just trying to make you aware of what you're doing.  So, OP, I would suggest that in the future you be more discerning with things you buy, because the choices you make don't just impact you- they impact all of us.

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

I also want to add that in my 'old age' (I'm 29), I've become more discerning about buying things and spending money in general.  Looking back to when I was a teenager, I definitely wasn't as appreciative about how much things cost, the cost of luxury items/extracurricular activities, etc.  It's a life lesson that comes with maturity and life experiences.  I've definitely become more aware of the value of a dollar (ok, now I feel REALLY old Smiley Happy ) and I think that awareness allows me to take a step back and assess my purchases.  

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

Even when I make a purchase, I try not to open/use it unless I am confident I will want to keep it!  As a result, I actually make some returns to my local store for items that are brand new and unopened (with the seal intact if there is one).  The employee that was processing my return one time was super excited to see some of the fabulous finds I had gotten from the online sale section.  She told me she was going to purchase the brand new MUFE Wild & Chic palette I was returning Smiley Very Happy

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

I think the takeaway here should be that returning is not a right, but a privilege.  Sephora has a generous return policy, but we should remember that they can revoke that privilege at any point if too many people abuse it.  Let's just try to be reasonable with our purchases and returns. Smiley Happy

 

Also... I haven't worked in retail, but I used to be a waitress.  The customer is NOT always right, and it's really unfortunate that American culture/society seems to enforce that idea.  I wish that more people had experience working in the retail/service industry.  Waitresses, SAs, managers, etc. are all human too.  Try to imagine how you would feel if you were in their shoes, and cut them some slack if they were not super sweet/pleasant.  Maybe you were wronged, maybe you weren't.  Either way, it's best to just let it go.

 

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

I disagree, and I'm not even a habitual, self-entitled returner. I rarely return, but if Sephora stopped their return policy you would have a lot of chargebacks & disputes, and less purchases. Part of the point for the return policy is so that you can feel confident buying from the company. Also it's not my job to be understanding if a Sales Associate isn't happy w/my business, it is their job however to positively represent Sephora, and give good customer service. 

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

While I see your point and I understand the importance of good customer service, as a human being, you should understand everyone has bad days as well. If you make their job more difficult on top of that, you should be understanding that they may not necessarily bend over backwards or bow at your feet just because you're buying from the store they're working at. You can't expect people to always keep a happy face, no matter how crappy they are being treated just because it's part of the job description; they aren't robots.

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

If Sephora were to make a decision to change their return policy, it would be because it is no longer profitable for them.  Sure, many of us choose to purchase from Sephora instead of elsewhere because of the return policy.  But remember that they lose money when you return a product, and you have to spend a lot more than the amount of your return to make up for it.

 

It is a sales associate's job to represent Sephora, but it is not their job to give customers anything and everything they demand.  It is part of their job to protect the company.  You would be surprised what some customers try to do... I had a woman eat her meal one time, and then call me over to say that it wasn't what she ordered.  

Re: Horrible Sephora experience... :( just had to share...

I've seen this happen before at Burger King! A man went up to the register and said the burger wasn't the one he ordered but he ate it all anyway. The guy at the register asked if he liked it and the man goes, "no." So they gave him a new one! I was baffled.

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