Though I love to walk around glammed up with my face “beat to the GAWDS”, there is nothing more refreshing than a makeup free day. It’s something about not having to worry about accidentally rubbing away my eyeliner or whisking away 30 minutes to an hour worth of work. Makeup free days just make sense running errands such as shopping for makeup at my favorite makeup counter. Or so I thought.
Back in my beauty consultant days with Clinique, I always viewed clients arriving makeup-less to the counter as a blessing. You may want to try stuff on, so why not? And lord knows how trying to remove thick layers of makeup off someone with thin tissues and makeup remover could be. Showing up with a clean canvas really makes the job easier for the consultant and the client. To me personally, it makes sense.
YouTube is full of makeup counter horror stories where women detail horrific experiences while shopping for makeup at their favorite brand’s counters. One thing, in particular, being treated much differently when they don’t have makeup on versus when they do. Many women find when they shop for makeup without makeup on the consultants are pretty standoffish and act as if they were bothered by helping them.
On the otherhand, when these same women shopped for makeup with makeup on, the service they received were top of the line. I decided over some months and some semi-unnecessary trips to buy makeup to explore this theory for myself. Low and behold, my experiences were much like the women’s stories that I’ve heard previously.
I showed up at my nearby makeup counter dressed comfortably and fresh faced. I really didn’t feel the need to get glammed up fo this. Apparently, if I want good customer service there actually is. I pretty much knew what I was looking to restock and open to buy but naturally, I had the urge to browse around. After maybe 10-15 minutes of being there, a consultant finally decided to “grace” me with her presence. Here’s how one particular trip went. I won’t say any names but 9 times out of 10, you can guess the brand it was.
I was invisible
There weren’t many customers there but still it took about 10 minutes or so for anyone to acknowledge my presence. While yes, I am a perfectly functioning human being that is very much capable of asking for someone’s assistance, it was very clear that I was being ignored while the girl who came in 5 minutes after me with her face fully done was approached by more than one consultant a number of times.
It was like pulling teeth to have the associate answer questions that I had
I just wanted simple answers to questions about color options that I didn’t see on display but have previously purchased. As the associate popped her gum and cleaned her makeup brush on a paper towel as if her life depended on it, she seemed annoyed by the fact that I was in her presence. Meanwhile, she didn’t feel annoyed by the women who had a full face’s on and appeared knowledgeable.
I began to feel rushed as if I was over staying my welcome
Apparently not wearing makeup means that you know nothing about it though no one actually wants to come help you figure it out. After I asked the consultant to grab a product for me she essentially began to rush me to the register to shorten my visit in order to attend to another customer. When I said I wasn’t done and wanted to browse some more her annoyance meter shot right back up.
The more products I bought, the less annoyed the consultant became.
It’s no secret that the beauty consultants are there to sell product but they are also there to help customers and not to treat them differently due to their appearances. Apparently not having on makeup determined how much money I would possibly spend according to the consultant.
Low and behold, when I visited the same counter completely glammed up 2 weeks later, I had the most remarkable shopping trip and everyone was so obliged to assist me. Now, ain’t that something?
While I personally found joy in a customer’s showing up to my counter without makeup on to shop (when I worked as a beauty advisor), it is very clear that not all beauty advisors feel this way. Instead of looking at it as an opportunity to teach from scratch, it’s looked at by some BA’s as “more work” or a waste of time. As if selling and sharing knowledge about beauty products isn’t a part of their job description…interesting.