Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Adventures in discount beauty shopping: eBay

After staying at a St. Regis for the first time ever (yes, I know, but I was/am pretty committed to the Four Seasons), I discovered Remede bath soap. It is lovely. It smells heavenly, cleanses beautifully, and leaves me very well moisturized, squarely displacing my current soap, Savon de Luxe, which is made of goat's milk, honey, and crushed almonds.

Despite my counter of La Prairie (purchased during Saks' F&F of course), I still had a very hard time ponying up $10.13 per bar of 2 oz soap (after beauty.com's F&F discount), and faced an even bigger crisis when I ran out: do I pay full retail (that would be $12.67 per bar)? Economically, that is nuts. Nuts. Is a bar of soap ever worth more than $7? And mind you, this is a teensy bar, not Bliss' ginormous clown soap or even Fresh's generous turkey eggs.

So, reluctant to find a gem only to let it slip away, I did something I have never done before: I went on
eBay. I had my reservations, but it's soap, I figure. It can't be that bad. Even an expired bar shouldn't burn my skin off or leave me with horrible chemical reactions. So I went for it. 9 bars for $50 ($57.50 after shipping, which equals $6.39 per soap). I was pretty pleased, but at the same time, afraid. Is it too good to be true?

The soap arrived today, and unluckily, maybe, I had it shipped to my office. Let's just say they handled it with suspicion because it came in a box used for packaging ground beef. It actually had beef expiration stickers on it, was scribbled over in permanent marker, and 'finished' with a flourish of 2 rubber bands. Upon handing it to me, the mail person
said, make sure it's not ticking!

The product: these things definitely came from TJMaxx, scraped off price tags and all. Boxes banged up all to hell and the soaps themselves are probably old but thankfully unmolested and intact (and still smell great!). Would I do this again? Probably not. I'll just have to go back to my more affordable goat's milk soap. Lesson learned: only gamble on beauty products that won't horribly disfigure you, but even still, it may not be worth the risk.

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