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Post in Beauty Confidential

Would you return a beauty product gift?

It's the holiday season and the age old dilemma: Do you return gifts? What about beauty product gifts? If you do return, how to decide where to return to?

With the rise of wish-lists, it seems easier than ever to get something someone will use, if you're going to buy practical gifts. 

A friend recently gave me a BareMinerals loose eye color in a purple color that would normally be all me - it's sealed, it's new but I've had allergic reactions to BareMinerals products in the past and will never use this, partially out of fear of my face blowing up into hives.

When is it okay to return a beauty gift? Do you return gifts? Re-gifting? (I'm going to assume we all say thank you and are grateful to have been given anything at all. I just hate to waste a gift by not using it!)

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

I think it's fine to return things, why keep it if you won't use it? Same with regifting, I will give it to someone else if I know that they will like it more than I did.

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

Last year my mother-in-law gave me a really big set of Philosophy Unconditional Love.  I'm really weird about scents.  It had a full size scent, a smaller bottle, a big tub of cream, a smaller tube of cream, and a big bottle of the wash.  I tried it once, and knew it wasn't really my thing.  I thanked her (of course!).  I have a good friend who LOVES trying all sorts of scents, so I gave her the bigger bottle and the tub of cream (both never opened).   She knew where I got it, and didn't mind at all.  She was excited to have them!  I should have given her the wash, too, because I've never opened it.


So, if you know someone who will enjoy it, why not re-gift?  I'd rather a friend enjoy it, than it go to waste.  I have no idea where I would have returned/exchanged it, because she lives in a different part of the state, with different stores (she probably ordered online).  But if you know where it came from (like it has one of those stickers from the department stores), I think exchanging would be fine, too

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

I'm super-weird about scents, have migraines that are scent-triggered, _and_ have allergies to common cosmetic ingredients (along with a kid with a very severe soy allergy) - buying stuff for us can be very difficult! 

I wish I knew someone to re-gift beauty products to. I always feel weird about re-gifting in general because I don't want people to think I'm not giving them something I'd think they'd like. 

Maybe I'm just weird about gifts. Smiley Very Happy 

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

Yes, I return -- to the place that is the least crabby about it if you don't have a receipt - i.e. Sephora (or maybe Nordstrom?)!  I have also returned gifts to Ulta but by me they are SOOO obnoxious about it.


I actually LOVE regifting -- I am happy to get a regift if it's something I can use or like, bothers me not at all even if I know.  


I also just love to give gifts and find things a home where they are useful, to me having things go to a place to be used and not a landfill is awesome.  Regifting included.

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

I'm a huge fan of practical gifts and giving things that you know someone wants and will use - that's why I love wishlists so much, I think. 

It's good to know that others don't mind re-gifts, as well, because I keep seeing stuff about re-gifting being tacky. I don't mind it a bit!

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

I don't return ever. I might pass it on to someone else. (Not a regift in a sense bc I wouldn't do it for a birthday or a holiday--no rewrapping, just a pass along).

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

Any particular reason on no returns? Just don't feel right? 

I feel weird giving re-gifts, I don't mind getting them at all. I have been known to say, "Hey, I know you use X and I've got a spare one, want it?" 

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

If I don't like it/it's not me, doesn't fit... I return. Most of my family members always include a gift receipt for clothes.

As far as beauty products go; if it's sold at Sephora, they'll take it, so just return it without a receipt. 

I'll regift items like wine, bath products, soaps... 

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

Lucky you getting gift receipts! I've only ever seen them for kid's toys when they're too small to open them on their own. Nice family members! Smiley Happy 

Re-gifted wine sounds like a missed opportunity to have a bottle of wine. Smiley Wink (I have allergies, so I know why this happens - I re-gift wines containing sulfites and other things I can't have.) 

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

If I knew where the product was purchased I would maybe exchange it. If I was unsure of where is was bought I would pass it along to someone else. I have passed MANY gifts on to my mother actually.

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

I see it looks like many of us feel weird about returning somewhere that the product might not have been purchased - I totally get that. 

I wish I had more folks in my social group to pass beauty products on to. Organic bath products, sure, but not so much with the beauty products. 

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

I agree with the idea that wasting a gift is the worst thing that can happen to it.  I try to include gift receipts when I can. As far as I am  concerned, it is acceptable to return any gift as long as you know where it came from and it is unused.  Re-gifting is fine as long as it is unused and you think the recipient would actually enjoy it.  If someone who is close to me gives me a gift that I exchange I will be honest about it if asked. For instance if my sister gave me a bottle of fragrance that I do not care for asked me how I like it and I had exchanged it, I would let her know what I did so that she doesn't purchase it for me again.  Most people would be glad to know that you got something that makes you happy. 

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

I'm with you on being honest about my opinion of a gift! Of course, I'm tactful in how I give that information and make sure they understand how much I appreciated that they got me something that seemed like it would be in my general taste preferences. 

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?

Great topic for the holidays!


I seldom do returns because it's usually not worth the time I would spend on the effort. My friends and family also know not to buy beauty products for me unless it's a go-to item.


With that said I keep a gift closet to put holiday/birthday purchases in for people on my list throughout the year. I have a section specifically for re-gifts. I make sure to put a note on it with who gave it to me and the date received so I don't do what my MIL did to me. Then I have a "stock" of ready, last minute things so I don't scramble around for a gift for someone I barely know.


That cheese plate and spreader that goes with nothing in my home? A hostess gift with cheese, crackers and fruit for the next neighborhood get together.


That beautiful angora/merino scarf that will give me hives? A beautiful alternative to a wine bag to someone, that I hope, isn't allergic Smiley Wink.


That crappy set of free knives you got for spending a certain amount at the grocery store? My Dad, he has more stuff than anyone I know and he will not know where it came from since he doesn't know what the inside of a grocery store looks like. Smiley Happy


In all seriousness, I am so appreciative of anyone giving me a gift but, sometimes things just don't work. Anything left in the re-gift section of my closet on January 2nd is either given to the men's/women's shelter or Goodwill.


I don't consider it re-gifting when I pass along something to close friends/family that I know they like and it is not attached to a special occasion.

Re: Would you return a beauty product gift?



    This is a great question..I'm curious about what other people do too..

I personally just keep them.. 

just because I feel bad about returning them, especially if its from a close friend.. because its so awkward telling him/her that i had to return it.. just in case the person is super sensitive and thinks their idea was bad.. 

I don't regift it either because I feel like it might get around to the person who gave it to me and i don't want to suffer from feeling guilty.. 

I sometimes give it to my cousins though just because they're abroad and I know my friends are not going to come across them.. 

but other than that,,, i just keep it in my "to be used" collection in a drawer so that when and if by any chance the friend/gifter comes over or asks I have it..


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