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Post in Customer Support

Wrong Samples

I received entirely different samples than the ones I’d picked. This was my first ever purchase from Sephora and I have to say I’m very disappointed. Upon googling, I see how often this has happened to other people aside from myself. I don’t think this should still be a common cause of customer dissatisfaction after so many years of it happening.


I understand substitutions have to be made if there is unavailability at the time of fulfillment. I also understand these are free samples. However, I would assume a company this large with such vast resources has already automated inventory data collection, separated inventory control duties, established material handling standards, and optimized the delivery/receiving process to prevent this kind of thing from happening.


The option to choose these samples should have never been available. Customers are given the illusion of choice when randomizing samples could entirely avert any letdown. If it isn’t guaranteed, the choice to pick your desired samples should be presented as a preference (in a way that is super apparent, not hiding somewhere in fine print) instead of a selection. The customer should also be asked to make 1-3 backup picks in case their chosen samples are (very likely, it seems) out of stock. At the very least, the customer should be notified. Then they will know what to expect as opposed to opening their highly anticipated order, only to be met with disappointment.


This was a huge letdown and I think there are many ways Sephora could have gone about this to improve the shopping experience and remedy this problem. I know I am not the only one who is frustrated and I think this problem could have long been resolved instead of having customer service placate every single customer. I've also noticed that everyone with this same predicament has not received consistent treatment. Some are PMed, some are reimbursed with points, some are given the same copy and pasted apology, and some are not addressed at all. I am not assigning blame to anyone in particular. I know everyone is just trying their best to do their job. On behalf of everyone who has experienced this issue, I'm just wondering why it seems no steps have been made toward improvement.

Re: Wrong Samples

I’m in the same boat.  I ordered several time this month, keep selecting the When The Rain Stops and keep getting samples of foundation in the totally wrong shade for me.  

I’ve been a Sephora Customer for over 15 years and the inability to get the samples I select has been worse these past 2 years.  Pretty sure those samples are being pocketed by the folks in the fulfillment center.  

it’s gotten so I’d rather spend my money at Ulta where my accumulated points can be used for a bigger discount or directly with the brand where I KNOW I’ll get a sample I’ve chosen.



Re: Wrong Samples

Me too, don’t even use foundation but for some reason Sephora inundates me with sample of it 

Re: Wrong Samples


I've been a Sephora member for years and early on I never had an issue but over the last year if I choose a high end sample 99% of the time I don't receive it I receive replacement of a product I would never choose.

When I contacted them about it, I informed them this is how I decide if I be want to purchase a product, but I'm politely dismissed. The sad part is I check the currently offered samples and it's usually still being offered, someone at their fulfillment center is keeping the samples they like access replacing them with their overstock samples. I have no proof of this, why offer the samples if they are gone from every fulfillment center at the same time.

I'm sorry I know how frustrating and disappointing it is, it doesn't matter that it's a "free" item, we spend good money and the samples are supposed to be a thank you for shopping with us. 

Re: Wrong Samples

@berryb00p We appreciate this feedback and I will share it with the appropriate department for future improvements. 

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