What did I tell you? I just knew there would be a problem with my Big Sexy Hair hairspray order on Amazon, I’ve been chasing a genuine version of this product for years.
OK. So in the grand scheme of things, this doesn’t seem like a big deal – but if you’re short £10.79 for your shopping, you’re not going to get it, are you?
This is how it went down and it’s also a warning to avoid the seller Irene Beauty UK on Amazon UK.
When the hairspray arrived (on 3rd June, right on time, filling me with false hope, dammit), there was a tiny rip on the shrink-wrapped label at the bottom of the can. The last time I used a can of this hairspray it wasn’t in a shrink wrap, but then that was years ago. I understand that some products are repackaged for the European market, but also it might be disguising a fake product. I started to unravel it wondering if I would reveal a plain silver-coloured can underneath.
Instead, it was a can with Chinese characters on it. Now, this could well be a genuine product (I’ve not tried it), but I didn’t feel comfortable that the seller chose to disguise this. I wrote to them and asked for an explanation, this was their reply:
Thank you for your email,
It is with great concern that I address an incident you experienced with our Product which you have received. After hearing of this issue, I would like to make an apology on behalf of our company. We are taking all the necessary steps to make sure that this type of problem does not happen again.
It is a serious issue that you have received the incorrect/damaged/missing item, please take a photo of the product and send it to us so that we can initiate for further investigation, our company values all of our customers and any feedback that is provided.
Please feel free to contact us to discuss any concerns that you may have in the future. We look forward to continuing our relationship with you and hope that we can serve you once again.
Excellent, I thought, it’s a standard reply, but they’re acknowledging that there could be a problem. So I emailed the photo above.
Thank you for your email
We have checked all our stock and we can confirm that none of the product is in Chinese language. The product which was sent out had a different barcode. Please check the pictures we have attached.
The thing is, I would have taken any other reply seriously if they had not stated that none of their products had Chinese characters on them.
I checked my label and fortunately, you just about can make out the barcode. Guess what? It’s the same as Irene Beauty UK.
Annoyed, I fired off this:
Hi Irene Beauty,
The photos of your stock show that the hairsprays have shrink-wrapped labels with the barcode on.
My hairspray has the EXACT same barcode, please see the enclosed photograph. Therefore it is your stock.
I am very upset that you are implying that the photo of the hairspray I sent you was not yours. Why would I do such a thing? That would be dishonest.
I think if you peel off the wrapping, then you would see Chinese characters underneath.
If you will not send me a return label and refund my money, then I will ask 5 friends with different Amazon accounts to purchase more hairspray. They will peel off the labels to reveal the Chinese characters and we’ll report you to Trading Standards. Then you won’t be selling any hairspray.
I look forward to the return label and my refund.
I was bluffing of course, but they’re made of tough stuff at Irene Beauty UK, I got this back:
Thank you for your reply,
The picture you have sent previously is completely different as compared to this picture. We can clearly see the barcode in that picture.
Keeping calm, because I hate being taken for a ride, I replied:
The barcode is different because the first photo shows the hairspray can UNDERNEATH the shrink wrap.
The second shows the barcode ON the outer shrink wrap which is how the barcode is printed on your photos.
I am opening a dispute.
I ‘chatted’ to an Amazon advisor online. They can see all the correspondence between us, and my refund was settled within 20 seconds ie the time it took for the advisor to read through the emails.
I wonder if Irene Beauty UK will send me a returns label now?