I was given free products to test out during my last visit to Clarins at The Curve. I found that the products actually suit my skin. Coincidently, Groupon came out with “RM30 for RM60 StrawberryNET Cash Voucher for Luxury Cosmetics, Skincare, Haircare and Fragrances for men / women”, which caught my attention. I went into StrawberryNET to check if they have the products that I wanted. I even called up Clarins to check on the price of one product, which is “Toning Lotion – Oily to Combiantion Skin 200ml/6.7oz”. It cost RM 90, according to the sales person who picked up my call, while StrawberryNET was selling it at RM 79.50 (Sept 7, 2011).
After few days of thinking, I finally bought three vouchers (as it limits every user to three vouchers). Also, I have only three products to purchase. The vouchers were supposed to be ready by Sept 11, 2011. However, Groupon was late. On Sept 12 morning, I actually messaged them about the vouchers, which I had no reply. Only about 4 pm on Sept 12, my vouchers were ready. Well, I could understand that they might be busy handling the thousands of vouchers sold, but I don’t get it how Groupon has been irresponsive, which shows some lacking in their after sales service.
So, I made my purchases as per instruction on the same night (Voucher numbers: #SNETGOM5293213, #SNETGOM5247966 and #SNETGOM5318078). During the purchase, I was stunned to find out that each of the product’s price has been increased by RM 1.50 within few days (which I wasn’t too happy about it). Nevertheless, it was still cheaper than if I were to buy it at Clarins (not to include the Groupon discount). The additional payments needed were made via credit card. I had to make three separate purchases; so it was filling up the details thrice (which can be able troublesome but understand that they want to avoid some administration hassle). As the deal promised, I was allowed to choose a free gift for each of the purchase, where the free gifts are limited to eye shadow and lipstick. Immediately after submitting the purchases, confirmation emails were sent to my inbox (which include order confirmation number), while on the next morning, I received the emails on the shipment status. Days later I tracked it and it said that the products were sent out on Sept 14.
After waiting for few days, the products finally arrived on September 22. After minusing one day of public holiday and two days of weekend, it actually took six days (which is also their promised policy of 4 to 6 days). Actually the day before I did email to HongKong Post to track my parcel, as I started to get anxious, but there wasn’t any response from them.
There were three separate packages, which were all packed properly. When opened, the products are in good condition and the free gifts were attached. I was also worried about the expiry of the products, but later found out about the expiration date from Clarins website, which say “In March 2005, a law went into effect regulating the labeling of cosmetic products. Products must now have a pictogram illustrating the length of time it may be kept after opening (when stored and used in proper conditions). This information is not required for products with a shelf life exceeding 30 months. You will note that on all of Clarins products, there is an ‘open jar’ pictogram containing a number followed by the letter ‘M’. This number indicates the amount of months, or ‘M’ that a product may be used after opening.”
Overall, I am satisfied with the deal. It has helped me saved RM 90 (from the Groupon voucher), which does not include the lower prices offered by StrawberryNET. Only thing that took me by surprised was the minimal increase in prices by StrawberryNET in less than five days. Also, I feel that Groupon should be more responsive even after the deal is closed, and that we have bought it – it really reflects the quality of their after sales service. However, I do look forward for such deal again. And, even there’s no more such deal, I think StrawberryNET is sort of a reliable online beauty discount store.