Beauty Spy ~ October 2016 Report

A monthly round up of what I have been up to, and what is coming up…

As Christmas approaches, the beauty companies are starting to release coffrets, limited editions, advent calendars, and make-up kits and brushes to tempt us, and indeed for a beauty addict it can be an expensive time of year. One thing I have noticed is that customer service levels are becoming too casual, less professional, and taken for granted. It has prompted me to review the recent customer service interactions I have encountered, because it does reflect on the company and the brand. Standards have dropped, and it’s disheartening to see genuine issues and complaints ignored or brushed off with vague excuses. It’s not acceptable, and companies need to be aware of this and up their standards. Professionalism matters.

I recently came across a brand called @The Hero Project and I tried a sample of their moisturizer, which was pretty dreadful, and I ended up using the rest of the sample as hand cream. Everyone deserves a second chance, so I decided to give another product a go, and asked them for a sample of their serums for me to try and to review, along with a press release. The very casual reply I received got my name wrong, was written in poor English, and said there were no samples (even though I know there are sachets of serums going out in beauty boxes), but all I got was a link to a form to fill out so I could register as a tester. First impressions last, and it isn’t a good one. #epicfail

Currently I’m trying out the latest skincare range from @Aldi, the Lacura Cuvée Royal collection. Aldi promptly sent me a press release, photos, and offered to send me some samples. That’s how a good PR company works (and I used to work in a PR office), and so far, the products are excellent. Two of the three items are heading for a high rating, and one may even get five stars from me, which is no mean feat. I’ve recently had a couple of skin reactions, so I have been gently getting my skin back to normal which prompted my article on how to deal with skin reactions. You can never predict what you will react to, and investing my own money to buy a product from a brand that didn’t impress and that is new isn’t a sensible consumer decision.

I’m still waiting for a response from the customer services @BirchboxUK regarding the elusive free Rituals Hand Balm offered on each order on their Customer Appreciation Day. I’m not holding out for much hope after reading all the other comments on social media, but the official response is that they ran out at 6 p.m. and it was removed from the website. Now, as I placed a couple of orders, one at 6 p.m. and another later on I know that isn’t true. Still, I will wait until my support ticket (in the queue) is answered. Birchbox PR doesn’t seem to have handled the situation well with many unhappy customers.

My next project is setting up a site that is more international, featuring brands and products that can be found worldwide, with interviews from those in the industry, and focusing on knowledge based articles. In the meantime, I’m waiting to see what Black Friday offers the companies come up with…

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