I mentioned earlier that I went to the mall recently. Anyone who's been to a mall has probably seen all the kiosks that scatter the walkways with eager salespeople trying to pull people over.
I had finally finished my sweater shopping and was heading back to meet my sis at the food court. As I was walking by this kiosk, I briefly made contact with the salesperson so gave a friendly smirk. Now that I think back on it, I should NOT have done that because apparently, that was an opening for him to come over to talk to me about whatever he was selling.
He actually walked over and handed me this sample and I was gonna graciously take it and be on my merry way. Unbeknownst to me, this was his sales pitch and he chided me over to his kiosk. I was annoyed with myself because I should have just told him I was meeting up with someone. I guess I was mad that my sis wasn't answering her phone (after countless times calling her) so I thought I'd kill time until she called me back; And here was a shiny opportunity to do so! Yeah, I'm a horrible person sometimes.
So he goes through all the basics, starting with the hand scrub/lotion because it's the easiest and most sanitary thing to sample. He talks about how smooth my hand feels after using it and blah blah blah. I've had a fair amount of salespeople try to sell me hand scrubs from the USA to as far as Singapore and all their products have the same effects in the end: smooth and silky hands. I've even bought a really cheap hand scrub from Big Lots for under $10 just to see how similar it was and hey, same effects immediately after using it!
There wasn't really anything that intriguing or amazing about the product besides the fact that it had "24K Gold" infused into the formula. "Yeah sure," I thought. Afterward I just wanted to get him off my back because sistah was starting to call. I tell the salesman that I'm not interested in buying hand scrubs/lotions right now because I have an abundance of that already. He keeps pushing it and asks me if there's something else I use and I say facial moisturizers. It was a stupid move on my part. He now starts rambling about facial moisturizers and facial scrubs and even goes as far as lying and exaggerating about whatever 'slightly' dry skin or 'slight' acne I may have on my face and how Oro Gold facial scrub can remedy that.
From that point on, I was completely put off from whatever he was talking about. First of all, my face is quite clear, I've even had people tell me that I should be working at the Lacome counter because my skin looks so nice (of course it was makeup too but still). With that said, am I really going to believe that my skin is dry or has acne? Hell no! I know that my skin is on the oily side so how does that give me dry skin and I didn't even have acne that day. Obviously, the guy is trying to play on whatever insecurities I may have so that I have a dying need to buy the product he's selling. I completely lost my faith in the dude after he mentioned that obviously false statement about my skin (how much more of a douche can a person be?); I was starting to question his credibility in the beginning after he said the product was made in Italy and yet after glancing at one of the boxes for the moisturizers, it stated clearly, "Made in Japan."
As for the salesguy's false, insulting comment about my skin, I'd like to mention the 'Platinum Rule' (and the platinum rule does exist btw). This rule states that salespeople should treat others the way that person wants to be treated. In a nutshell, it means: Avoid insulting the customer at ALL costs! So for all the salespeople selling health/beauty items, don't ever point out your potential customers' flaws!!! It's insulting, degrading, and makes the customer feel bad about not only themselves, but also the salesperson who had the audacity to say that. It's like a person saying, "you're overweight so I think you should wear this color instead" or "you've got really bad acne so I think you should use this product to improve your skin." It's better to compliment people and point out the benefits of a product instead of blatantly saying that 'a person NEEDS this because (insert flaw)'. The only time it's okay to go with the 'improving-your-flaws' technique is if the customer points out that fact themselves.
Anyway, back to the Oro Gold shady stuff. The salesman told me that he was going to show me something *special* about what he would be selling me. He took out his iphone and went to the Oro Gold website to show me how much the product 'actually' costs compared to the price that he would give me which was a bit more than 50% off. He told me that he would give me a hand scrub and hand moisturizer both for $48 when the actual value is around $116. I still wasn't really convinced by this because I've already found that outlet malls use this same seedy practice where they will mark up the 'original' prices of items by a lot and make it seem like the customers save so much more than they actually are. I wonder why Oro Gold even bothers with having ridiculously high prices online compared to their kiosks and stores. It makes the whole establishment seem so much more suspicious and non-credible. I mean, the average person should know that marking down items from the OFFICIAL website by that much is too good to be true. I eventually got my chance to escape by telling the guy I had sensitive skin and wanted to do more research on the product before I bought it.
I always, always, always do research before buying any kind of cosmetic. It is my rule of thumb and keeps me out of trouble with my skin. ABSOLUTELY NO impulse buys allowed, at least for cosmetics. After doing some searching on the Oro Gold products online, I came across Beauty Snob's Blog.
Kat in the comments stated this which really disturbed me:
"Oro Gold products are made with colloidal gold. The sales pitch
promoting the use of 24k gold in their products doesn’t mention that
there is probably only a fraction of 1 cent of gold in the entire tube
or jar – certainly not enough to justify the inflated prices. Colloidal
gold used to be used to treat very severe rheumatoid arthritis in the
past, but because of the possibility of serious side effects, it rarely
is now. Long term use of colloidal gold can cause a condition called
CHRYSIASIS, which, besides causing problems such as kidney failure, is
famous for turning your skin blue, mauve, or grey! Use of colloidal
silver causes a similar condition called argyria. While reported cases
of chrysiasis are usually caused by colloidal gold being injected (for
rheumatoid arthritis) or taken internally, medication and toxic
substances can be absorbed by the skin (think of nicotine patches or
other trans-dermal patches such as those for sea-sickness). While
short-term use of Oro Gold products is unlikely to cause any problems, I
would be very cautious about using them for any length of time. Next
time you are grabbed by one of their snake oil salesmen, shout
“Chrysiasis!!!” in their ear and walk on."
I looked up this info in more detail and what she says is true although most researchers find that the use of colloidal gold on skin doesn't really produce any serious ill side-effects compared to the many benefits of using colloidal gold. Most researchers found that it was the injections and oral consumptives that should be taken carefully because there is a possibility of overdose and complications. The only real caution for colloidal gold in cosmetics that I found was that if a person were allergic to gold, they should be aware of possible allergic reactions.
Kat could be right as metals can build up in the body over long periods of time if a person regularly uses the product. One can't say that it's impossible for a person to develop Chrysiasis or any other negative complication even though there's a rare chance of it happening.
There are a number of other blogs talking about the 'Oro Gold Scam'. Another informative blog can be found on Marga's Vox Publica.
I'm just really proud of myself for not giving in and buying a product that I don't need. And after further research on the Oro Gold products, I'm REALLY proud of myself because of the horrible reputation this company has of scamming its customers.
Here are a list of traits I found that give this company a bad reputation:
1. Ridiculously pushy salespeople who may be claiming things that aren't credible
2. Unethical practice of highly inflating prices on original website compared to prices in stores/kiosks just to create a sales pitch
3. False return policy where the salespeople claim they accept returns yet at the bottom of receipt it clearly states "no returns"
4. Bad return policy for salesperson's mistake of charging items wrong
5. Salespeople have poor knowledge of the benefits/effects of gold in the cosmetic product (The salesguy I met with only talked about 'vitamins and minerals' in the products but made no specific elaboration about the benefits or effects of gold even though the brand is called 'Oro Gold'..)
After finding all kinds of bad things about this company, I would personally steer clear. I honestly don't care about people making the excuse that angry customers talk smack about the company and give them a bad rep. The company is responsible for upholding a good and credible reputation, with or without vengeful customers. There are so many bad comments about Oro Gold, even going as far as multiple negative blog reviews, that I start to believe Oro Gold truly is an unethical company.