Tuesday, November 27th, 2012

Temptalia Asks You


How do you feel about brands that only/primarily release limited edition products? Love or hate? Depends?

Temptalia's AnswerI don’t mind, as long they’re the same quality as the permanent range. The one thing I don’t like is limited edition skin care.

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55 thoughts on “How do you feel about brands that only/primarily release limited edition products?

  1. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of rebecca blueraccoon

    It depends on two things: one, whether the quality is there, and two, whether they have enough product to satisfy demand (I’m looking at you, MAC). If the products are good quality and getting them doesn’t involve waiting up all night to pounce on the website or store at first light, then I’d be okay with it, but I’m not going to stalk a counter or website to get the next LE blush or highlighter. I prefer brands that release products as part of their permanent range (hey, Burberry and Illamasqua) instead.

    • Meg

      I really dislike the impulse “buy, Buy, BUY!!!”, especially when the quality is not there. Some of these releases just seem thoughtless and horrendously low quality when one really expects the LE products to be anything but.

      Black Phoenix Alchemy Lab (really nice fragrances) does much the same thing, TONS of LEs, lots of different themes, and when something strikes a chord, it comes back next year, or at another time in the not-too-distant future to allow those who didn’t have a chance, or those who fell in love to have a go at the product(s). I think its just good business sense, and even though there is a degree of “holy cow, grab it NOW!” this sort of sales tactic has never made me feel disrespected as a consumer.

  2. I tend to like the rapid-fire Limited Edition companies a bit less than the folks who will discontinue a product only when the ingredients are no longer available / when there’s zero continued demand / when they reformulate the product to be better. When I first started buying makeup the “limited edition” cycle was fun, it was neato, it was a special thrill. Now, I’m just exhausted. I like Meow Cosmetics’ approach, which combines the thrill of “ooo limited!” with the stability and security that, if you missed buying full sizes of a seasonal collection this year, it will be back next year. (And it will bring friends.)

  3. This is a MAC bashing waiting to happen LOL

    Overall, I don’t really mind. I rarely repurchase makeup colours; once I use something up I usually want to try something new, not buy the same colour again, so I don’t mind if the original is no longer available.

  4. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Amy xamyx

    I’m not a fan. I feel a brand should be able to stand behind a product long enough to allow the consumer to buy it; not everyone has the time, desire, or money to buy the item immediately.

    I think NARS has the perfect approach. There are only 4 collections released in a year, and often the products are rotated into the permanent line. Also, the LE items are available for a while online. I love the idea of a quality core collection, and being able to replace a product should it be lost, damaged, etc.

    • Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Marie Marie

      I agree with everything you say. I dislike any strategy that encourages impulse-buying. So LE products that sell out in a few hours, I hate! I end up not buying from these brands at all.

      About NARS, don’t forget LE gift sets / palettes for holidays and sometimes LE items for summer. ;)

      I love that I can have a little (or a lot of) time to decide whether or not I really want something. I’d rather be treated as a well-informed careful consumer than a brainless cash-cow.

      • Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Amy xamyx

        I consider the gift-sets & palettes to be a bit different, though. At least they tend to be products that are available in the permanent range. I may have to spend a bit more, but at least I can spread it out, buying one or two products at a time, instead of stalking ebay to buy an item (that may be fake) at 3X the price.

        Also, there have been a few palettes that have shades I have already, or don’t want, so although they are very nice, I prefer the individual products. Besides, my OCD won’t permit a palette of a different size, LOL. My NARS products are stored in drawers, either in single shadows, or duos & blushes.

  5. I find it annoying. Spontaneous or time pressured LE buys have typically been accompanied by a sense of letdown for me. I am far more pleased and excited about making quality purchases and receiving products that have been proven performers. It is so much more gratifying.

    • hawaii girl

      I so agree with you. Hype just for the sense of hype. I only buy LE products if they are something ultra trendy and I just want to try something wildly different as a special look. If it’s something that is in my usual palette of wear I ignore it. Why fall in love just to never see it again!

  6. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Veronica Veronica

    If it’s high quality and produced in adequate numbers, then I’m fine with it. MAC’s method is one that generally turns me off, though I understand the underlying financial strategy there. For the most part, I prefer a solid permanent line with seasonal LE collections that are well-supplied, such as how Guerlain and NARS tend to approach it.

  7. Ugh I will NEVER understand limited edition skincare (*hinthint* MAC!! *hint*). WHY??!!

  8. As long as the quality is good, I don’t mind. I do find limited edition brushes a bit ridiculous though. I’d assume the company is testing the waters, but sometimes a good one just never comes back!

  9. Sharon

    hate it! Because if the quality is not good as my expectation, I will be hesitate to return.

  10. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Mirian Vermeulen Mirian

    I don’t mind at all as long as there are enough available to last more than a few days on shelves. Chanel does a great job with LE collections, but MAC is terrible. the quality suffers and there is NEVER enough to go around

  11. Yellowlantern

    As long as there are adequate quantities to not have to stalk websites at midnight and buy immediately I don’t mind them. Generally I don’t mourn not being able to buy the color or product again since I know that eventually something similar or even better will come out either from the same brand or a different brand.

  12. I’ve honestly started to ignore the LE collection with the exception of lip products because MAC make the most flattering shades of lipstick for pale girls like me in only the LE lunches in my favorite Cremesheeen formula …. Why can’t Ever Hip be permanent!

    I’m particular LE eyeshadows I try to avoid as it’s great colour but if I end up liking something I want to share and i sucks not having it as an option.

  13. It really depends. As mentioned by others, if the quality is on par with their permanent line then that is fine, but if they offer sub par LE products or they intentionally create an extreme shortage (there is a difference in LE and low numbers meant to spur mass hysteria). I also tend to feel like there is a reason some companies rely on LE releases…and it makes me wonder if they are afraid to stand behind an LE line because they know that long term it wouldn’t fair well. If the only way you can create high sales is by constantly churning out LE lines it seems like you know you don’t have much to offer in the fan loyalty department (as in certain products that a customer may swear by and use for years…a repeat product buyer).

    I do hate when a foundation or skin care item in LE because if it is the perfect fit for certain customers and they can’t re-purchase it then you don’t create a happy customer…you create a frustrated one that is more likely to avoid getting attached to anything you offer that they know would be a repeat purchase (foundations…skin cleansers, moisturizers, etc).

  14. felicity

    I like when a company puts out limited edition collections every week like MAC does. It gives you something new to look forward to every time and that’s a good feeling. And so what if there are misses? People don’t have to buy it. That’s why you read reviews. I don’t get why people throw hissy fits at products that didn’t get good reviews they HAVEN’T even purchased! The way they complain, it’s like they actually bought it. It’s not like they’re being forced to buy it. But yeah I like the fast turnover of collections.

    • Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Amy xamyx

      In the case of MAC, the issue is that so *many* items have been complete “duds”, although some have been great; the problem is sometimes, by the time a review comes out, the collection is sold out. Also, just because a review says one thing, I may find it to be the opposite, which is why I like to see it myself. Not everyone has the time (or money) to stalk the website or ebay.

      I realize this is pobably the influence of Estee Lauder, who with their model of “exclusivity” when they first hit counters, single-handedly edged other brands out of the market (ie, Ultima II, Borghese, etc).

      • felicity

        No that’s not true with Temptalia. Christine almost always puts out reviews before the products appear on MAC website. In fact I’ve not purchased anything from MAC LE collection this year that Christine didn’t review few days prior to release. I almost exclusively rely on this blog for MAC releases.

        I do understand your frustration about the collections selling out fast though. I didn’t get Candy Yum Yum and Moxie lipstick but I don’t blame MAC. It’s just a fact of life there are women who wanted it more than me and they put more effort than I did to get it so good for them that they got it.

        • Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Amy xamyx

          Well, that still doesn’t address the issue of differing opinions, or lacking the time to stalk the website. Just because someone has a job, a family, etc, doesn’t mean they don’t want a product as much (or more) as someone else.

          Also, regardless of when reviews/swatches go up, I still like to see a product in person. As much as I trust Christine’s work, I also realize there may be some discrepancy in color (due to my screen). There was actually a collection that I saw here that I got very excited about, and although the quality ws there, the color wasn’t what I expected.

          I also realize this marketing model is likely the work of Estee Lauder, as this is how they work; they’ve actually edged several high quality brands out of the North American market using this same strategy.

        • Miss J

          Um. MAC has released collections early (in some cases an entire week) online with no warning. When Watch Me Simmer came out with Shop Shop Shop, my counter had two. TWO. What the fuck? I was lucky enough to get one, but WMS sold out before the counter even opened. MAC has become notorious for failing to stock adequate amounts for LE collections. By Request…those lipsticks were sold out before they even showed up on the site. The ONLY way to find them when they came out was through a link Christine put up on the blog, but there was no other way to locate them on the site.

          So, no, it’s not just because someone else “wanted it more” or “put more effort.”

          • felicity

            “Limited” means restricted in unit. Expect that not everyone will get it. That’s just the way it is. The By Request lipsticks created such hype it made their website crash. The lipsticks ran out the next morning and the items “showed up” a few hours after the initial crash that night. It’s not possible for it to have been “sold out” before it showed up. What’s that, magic? Those people who “put alot of effort” like my roommate were the ones who kept refreshing the website for hours and asking other users if it showed up. So yeah they put THAT MUCH MORE effort than me and they were rewarded. Good for them.

            • I have to admit that a few times the MAC website would list the new product and it would immediately be listed as sold out (if someone was stalking the site and snatched the product supply up within seconds of it posting then they are incredibly amazing). I also know that this year for some reason MAC seemed to supply their counters with very little LE product to sell. I’m talking about 2-3 of each item…one of which would be the display. The MUA’s complain that they can’t demo some items on customers because they are told that they can’t use the one sample and they only have 2 available to sell. Not saying this is the norm across all MAC counters but it is in the region that I live in based on several MAC MUA’s I know in several cities across 3 states. I don’t stress it so much because honestly, I’ve been disappointed in 85-90% of the MAC LE items I did venture out and purchased or tested this year so selling out quickly probably saved me a lot of money that I might have spent first and complained later if the items hadn’t sold out lol.
              I will say that the way you describe limited sounds more like “rare”. Yes, limited means confined/restricted but the term is a bit vague. Anything with a pre-determined number can be called limited (the capacity of an arena is limited and therefore tickets to that concert can be deemed “limited edition”). It’s very possible that MAC could be intentionally producing abnormally low inventory to create the frenzy of customers rushing to buy the product before it sells out with out regard to if the product is truly worth it…and would explain the high number of limited edition products they seem to release annually. Or…people really are stalking the sites and counter every chance they get much like Apple customers wait in line for days for the latest iPhone release (with the exception being that technically, the iPhone has never been called LE lol).

        • Miss J

          Also, it makes sense people would bitch and feel disappointment over a product they haven’t purchased. It makes sense because people did used to look forward to MAC collections, but now they predominantly suck. What’s to look forward in that? Ohhh, NOTHING. So, if someone was looking forward to a MAC collection then it turned out to totally suck… Bitching is expected there.

          • Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Amy xamyx

            Exactly. As I said earlier, this is the work of EL. They did this sort of thing as far back as the 80s & 90s. EL is the reason we lost several brands altogether, and others were relegated to DS status. As much as I like EL, I just can’t bring myself to buy from them, and my purchases from subsidiaries is *very* limited.

  15. Adeline

    I don’t like it. That’s the reason I stopped buying MAC. I don’t mind occasional LEs though. I prefer it when brands release a few collections a year with high quality products and add these to their permanent range.

  16. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of chris chris

    I am used to it since becoming a MAC girl. If I fall in love with a particular shade, I just buy 2 or 3. I also troll ebay sometimes for hard to find shades. This Summer, I lucked up on three more Cyndi L. Viva Glam lipglasses. I love that shade.

  17. Monica!

    I agree with Christine regarding LE skin care, like when Mac rereleased the volcanic ash exfoliator I didn´t purchased it because what if I loved it only to be unable to get it again? I hate that! as for makeup and as my collection grew I am less drawn to LE, I try to spot the really special items but otherwise I prefer to shop the permanent lines

    • casey23

      well volcanic ash sucks anyway so no harm done :) (when I say “sucks” i mean doesn’t worth the hype..)

    • casey23

      But also gotta say that, and this is only for MAC limited editions products, they usually bring it back at least in a year in another LE group so I mostly find any LE product I buy from MAC in a year or sooner..

  18. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Brenda Brenda

    I have come to dislike it overall. I feel it creates too much exclusivity and consumerism, which I feel has put our entire society out of whack with what matters in life. (Exclusiveness and consumerism has displaced priorities, i mean).. Just my opinion.

    • VickyM

      I think the same way you do, there are more important things and I feel society in general is becoming more and more superficial, sadly.

  19. Kate

    I personally find it extremely irritating. Quality issues aside, I just hate it. If I fall in love with a palette/lipstick/blush/etc. from a limited edition line, then I’m just screwed and feel like I have to use something sparingly. No matter where I go to purchase my makeup, I almost always buy from the permanent range so I can be sure that if I fall in love, I can always come back and repurchase. :)

  20. Dawn Reed

    I think of LE collections as a supplement to a permanent line. I prefer brands that have a robust line of permanent colors that make a good basic collection. I tend to dislike and get confused by brands that have too many items that are permanent…..they all can’t be of quality and style longevity. Limited editions collections should supplement with trendy colors or items that have a shorter window of desirability. They do need to be available in quantities that make them accessible to anyone who wants them for a decent amount of time.

  21. Kelbelt

    Bobbi Brown comes to mind and I hate it. Her products are so overpriced and bland, I feel that people only buy them on impulse. Her palettes always look so lavish and fun and I want to grab them because they are limited edition. After I do my research online, I find that they are of poor quality.

  22. Julia

    Personally, I cannot stand it! To me, ‘limited edition’ is a big marketing technique to get us to buy multiples of a product due to a fear of running out. If the product was permanent, would you still buy 3 backups?

    • Hannah

      It definitely is a marketing technique. If things weren’t “limited edition,” people wouldn’t buy backups and they probably wouldn’t rush out to buy the product at all. I know that I wouldn’t have bought several of the LE products that I have if I had more time to think the purchases over and really test the products out. Or I would have just lost interest in the product knowing that I could always go back and buy it later if I felt like it.

      • Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Amy xamyx

        It’s also a way to get you to the store/counter; they figure since you’re already there, you’ll pick up something else. It’s also a way to get the consumer to “set aside” their beauty budget for an anticipated collection, therefore not buying from other brands. Estee Lauder has been doing this for years, and it’s actually worked. Now, it seems they’re using MAC in this strategy.

    • Nikki

      I totally agree that limited edition products are all about making big bucks which is one reason I rarely buy them. I don’t like the feeling of being pressured into purchasing multiple products for fear that I’ll never get my hands on it again. I REFUSE to buy back ups of limited edition items because there is always something new to try! I’ve just decided that if I indulge in a limited edition product, I’ll just have to find an alternative once it’s all gone!

  23. Lauryn

    Personally and Professionally..I hate it. Clients ALWAYS want to use something color that they love and it turns out that it was “limited”.. And if i don’t have it anymore (*cough*PLEASUREFLUSH*cough*) then they seem so disappointed. Also, skin care? REALLY? who does that? Yes, MAC does.. And it makes me INSANE. My skin is so b*tchy as it is.. Find something that works and voila..POOF..GONE. I have the Volcanic Ash, LOVE IT.. why its not perm? I do not know. Same thing with the Honey Lust.. so many people loved that line of skin care.. and its gone. Nothing is more frustrating, maddening and irritating..

  24. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Quinctia Quinctia

    I mostly don’t mind LE things, as long as it’s a) available for a reasonable amount of time so I don’t have to rush out and get it and b) a type of product it takes me awhile to go through, anyway.

    Eyeshadows and lip products…by the time I’d use up any of those, even if they were general catalog shades, they’d often be discontinued. I think my most well-worn lipstick right now is Urban Decay’s Midnight Cowboy, which wasn’t LE, and now the entire line is discontinued.

    Things I don’t really want to pick up LE versions of: foundation, setting powder, primer, my everyday bronzer/highlighter, natural colored mascara, brow gel, daily cleanser, daily moisturizer.

    LE skincare that doesn’t bother me: masks, toner (I only use it as a cool pick-me-up after a hot bath), scented scrubs, basically anything that I use occasionally rather than consistently.

  25. Amber

    Sometimes LE products are a fresh and or unique addition to a brands permanent line. In a perfect world more LE items would be available in large enough quantities that would allow people a better opportunity to purchase them. I wish LE heavy brands would realize that in this economy sometimes cosmetics purchases can be a luxury that may have to be postponed due to more pressing financial matters. However in the case of most LE items two words come to mind EXHAUSTING (i.e. waiting up for pink friday to go on sale) and FRUSTRATING (i.e. finding rave reviews for the msf metal rock only to find out it was LE and I had better chances of finding a talking unicorn)

  26. VickyM

    I don´t like limited edition products in general, because if I loved the product it would be nice to repurchase. I don´t even own one single limited edition product as of now, I might in the future if I really like a limited edition product, but I dislike them in general.

  27. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of Leigh Leigh

    I used to buy LE products from lots of brands, but for the most part, I don’t get sucked into that trap anymore. The exception are my favorite brands like Chanel and Dior, and I usually plan for those, with the help of Temptalia!

  28. Nikki

    Personally, I’m not a fan of limited edition collections. I usually avoid them at all cost because I hate the idea of falling in love with a product only to use it all and not be able to repurchase it. In fact, the only limited edition items I own are some MAC lipglasses that were released in the Fashion Sets. The only reason I purchased them was because I prefer gloss, and I was planning to buy many of the shades in lipstick form anyway. I doubt I’ll ever shop limited edition again. =/

  29. Profile wp-user-avatar wp-user-avatar-60 alignnone photo of JuliGrace JGR

    I don’t like buying things that I will never see again. Like some others who’ve posted before me, I’m afraid of really liking something and then being disappointed because I can’t replace it.

    I also feel that when I buy limited edition things, I find myself having a strange kind of buyer’s remorse in which I wonder if the only reason I bought the thing in the first place was because it was limited edition. I hate the feeling that I’ve been caught up by a marketing ploy and made to buy something that I would not otherwise notice if it were part of a permanent collection.

    I like to think a lot before I buy anything (especially products $50 and over), and having something limited edition doesn’t give me enough time to think about my purchase first.

  30. I agree that they should be the same quality as the permanent range. It really burns my cookies when a company rips off customers by including sub-par product in their limited edition sets. That said, I think limited edition stuff can be really fun when it’s done well.

  31. I actually really dislike them. Why not focus on creating a solid permanent range instead?