May I have a sample please?

by Juliette

Hello everyone.

Sorry, this is going to be me rambling again, I’ll try to make it short. It won’t be short.

I just wanted to go more in depth on a subject I touched on in my last article, The Perfect Canvas?, asking for a sample before buying beauty products. Please bear in mind this article applies primarily to high end brands.

While in the US it seems like customers can return unwanted products for a refund, it isn’t the same here in the UK and so I think it would be wise to ask for samples so you get a chance to try the products before buying them.

So, how do I get samples?

1. The ladies at beauty counters are generally happy to help and to ‘demo’ de product on you. Just ask ‘May I have a sample please?’ when you feel like you might want to buy a foundation straight away. They should give you a sample and write down the shade and the name of the product on a card.

And because it doesn’t always go that way, here is an example of what shouldn’t happen :

I was doing some shopping with a friend a few weeks back, we walked by an Urban Decay counter. The lady stopped us and insisted on applying their new Naked Skin foundation on me. I was curious, I agreed. When she finished, she handed me a mirror so I could have a look all that while asking if I’d like to buy the foundation there and then. I asked for a sample, she said they didn’t give any out, she lost a sale right there and then.

I’m sure she was a very lovely lady, and she wasn’t rude at all, maybe she genuinely hadn’t been given any samples for her customers, the trouble is I really don’t think I (or anyone else) should be forced to buy a product after only having it on for a few minutes.

2. When you are buying some products at a beauty counter, ask for samples if they haven’t given you any. They always have moisturizers, perfumes, etc. to give out to customers.

3. High end brands often have deals, ‘spend £40 on skincare and get a free gift!’, generally a makeup bag with larger samples of makeup and skincare products. These free gifts do come at a price but I managed to avoid buying eye cream for a while that way!

4. There are always perfume and shampoo adverts with samples in magazines! And of course the monthly freebie.

5. Some online stores do have sell/give samples. I recently found, they have free samples that you can order for free, you will only need to pay the delivery charges. Just be aware that it is £3 for the delivery (if you spend less than £30)and each order can have up to three samples.

6. I’m sure many of you have heard of sample boxes like Glossy Box and Jolie Box, these are excellent ways to get to try new products. I would however point out that while they are good schemes, you still need to pay for them and you don’t get to pick which samples you get.

Below are samples I’ve picked up in the last few week. And yes, I did get my hands on a Naked Skin sample in the end, it came free with an  order I placed online. Ha!

Where do you get samples from? Can you think of any other way to get samples?