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Have you ever purchased an average (or worse) product because of the packaging?

I can’t recall deliberately buying something I knew wasn’t going to be good just for the packaging but have inadvertently purchased many things that have been duds with pretty/interesting packaging, LOL.

— Christine


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Deborah S. Avatar

The Two Faced holiday release in 2015. My daughter wanted them so I purchased even though I knew the quality wasn’t there. I had read reviews both here and on YT and the ratings were low. This past holiday I asked her if she wanted the release to go with the previous years and she declined saying the palettes were terrible. Lesson learned although I have been tempted!

Tammy Avatar

I immediately thought of Too Faced, lol. No, I can’t actually think of anything right this minute, but I’m pretty sure I’ve done this before.

Kubbymo Avatar

Yes! Just recently I got my Marc Jacob’s featherlight powder foundation for the big mirror compact. I’m a little disappointed that it isn’t as heavy as their eyeshadow palette, but it was $20 at TJ Maxx so I’m not too bothered.

Erica Avatar

Nope, not intentionally. I never buy anything knowing it’s going to be bad or underwhelming and I don’t usually buy things bc of the packaging

LindaP Avatar

My reaction to packaging seems to dance to a different beat than many. I could not care less about it. I prefer function and quality over frill. I actually have not bought some products because of fancy packaging — I’m thinking here of Guerlain’s Meteorites. Packaging turn off. It makes me think — charge me less or up the quality/quantity of what’s inside. Every single time I use my favorite Givenchy Lipstick, it bothers me that the tube is covered in leather. What? WHY?

Just my opinion. It’s a losing battle in the world, I know. 🙂

Mariella Avatar

Linda, at least amongst this crowd, you seem to be in good company. I have Guerlain Meteorites and I’ve lamented many times that you cannot get refill “beads” for it at a lower price. Ditto their lipsticks with in the gorgeous cases with the mirrors. I am old enough to remember when Estee Lauder, Ultima II and the few other “prestige” companies that were around then did offer refills for their lipsticks, powder compacts, etc. And this was LOOOOONG before the awareness we’re supposed to have now about reducing packaging and putting less cr*p into land-fill sites.

Steph Avatar

Unfortunately yes!! I frequently choose packaging aesthetics over product quality (a symptom of being a previous art & graphic design student). It may mean products go unused but my vanity is so beautiful and I just love to look at all the pretty things, it makes me happy so I think it’s worth it!

Deborah S. Avatar

I am a sucker for pretty packaging also. I love to display beautiful pieces on my vanity. I am with you. Life is short and we should enjoy beautiful things around us. Makeup makes me happy and is really my only splurge item so I think I am worth it and glad to hear that it makes you happy also.

Silvia Avatar

I fall for pretty packaging too! All the time my pleasure. Lol! I love seeing them each time and rotate often but I’m happy with my purchases actually.

Mariella Avatar

Nope, never. Packaging is so not a big deal to me – all I want is for it to be practical and as “unbulky” as possible, so “novelty” or “special” packaging means nothing to me unless the product inside is good quality.

xamyx Avatar

No, although I most likely would have been swayed by Andy Warhol X NARS if the packaging were special (heck, I was tempted by the “plain” packaging, LOL!).

I have, on the other hand, skipped great products due to “bad” packaging. It takes *a lot* to get me to buy higher end products in cardboard, and I can’t stand “cutesy”, juvenile designs…

AB Avatar

xamyx — Now that you mention it, I realize I too have skipped products due to poor packaging, especially when it seems almost childish.

Eileen Avatar

No, if the product isn’t going to meet my needs, I don’t care about the packaging especially since I keep my products in drawers rather than on a vanity. On the other hand, I have been completely turned off by packaging that I’ve found childish, gimmicky, or completely impractical no matter how many raves the product received.

Julia Avatar

Every Guerlain Meteorites I have, haha! It’s the combination of packaging/ presentation that gets me, but if I’m honest I don’t think they are that great of a product when it comes down to it. Especially considering the price-point. At least they look beautiful on my vanity ?

Rachel R. Avatar

I would never buy an outright crappy product just for packaging. For example, I passed on the NARS Andy Warhol collection.

Average quality: Maybe. If the theme were something I were really into AND I knew I could get it to work on me with an eye or lip primer, glitter glue, or whatever. Even then, I’d probably wait till it went on sale cheaper (as I did with UD Full Spectrum).

However, I was fully prepared to buy a couple of things from the UD Basquiat collection just for the packaging, which is really rare for me. I know I can usually make less than perfect UD products work for me, though, so still not a big risk.

Pearl Avatar

Yes, but thankfully I don’t consider what I’ve bought to be average or mediocre. I’m a sucker for packaging (especially if it’s luxe), but won’t buy it unless the quality (for me) is there. Some notables are Guerlain Meteorites, Shiseido Future LX Loose Radiance Powder, Tom Ford quads and palettes, and various LEs from MAC and I’ve been happy with all of it. The only one that comes to mind that I just loved the packaging but didn’t care for the product was the Burberry eye cream colors. I gave it a solid month of working with it and in the end, returned it. I love how sleek the Burberry packaging is but the products are comparable to other brands I like so I just stick with those (for now, ha!).

Anne Avatar

I don’t purchase many items without seeing them in person, so I think I can safely say that I have never deliberately bought something in person just because it had pretty packaging. I have bought a few things, however, from web sites that I thought were worth the risk (and their pretty packaging didn’t hurt I’m sure), but I can’t remember choosing any of them just because of their packaging. I’m not a collector.

janine Avatar

No if anything I shy away from it. The Mariah collection was one example the main things I liked sold out right away and god knows I love nude lipsticks but bought nothing. I don’t fall for hype I usually plan,review the items and get what I need lol. Lately need=all the highlighters! Lol

Lulle Avatar

Oh yeah. I mean I always have the hope that it will work for me although the reviews are not very good, and sometimes it does.
The last things I can think of are highlighters: the Lancome La Rose and Too Faced Blinded By The Light. I bought them despite average to poor reviews everywhere I’ve looked, and it turned out that they both work for me really well.
In other cases I haven’t been so lucky, but I can’t think of anything very recent.

Ziwei Avatar

I was thinking really hard but I think the only thing that fits this category is a double ended brush set from sephora. I was a sucker for off white packaging. The brushes were subpar for sephora.

Lea Avatar

I’m wracking my brain, but the only thing I can think of is a pair of lip balms I bought two or three years ago on BeautyHabit in retro pill case packaging with a fox on it (my last name). Obviously I own a lot of things fox and needed these. I recall the lip balm being okay at best, but it was irrelevant since I got them with the intention of cleaning out the balm and actually using them as pill cases. So yes I have done it, in the spirit of the question, but it would have been an added bonus and a delay on what I was doing if I had actually liked the balm. I may see if it was actually a meh balm or if I just decided to chuck it and get on with my plan – I only emptied one of the two I bought, so the other one is in my beauty closet still.

Donya Avatar

NOT “exactly” but when I was around 18, and coming off of high school where I was picked on for being poor, I switched all of my makeup to Chanel, solely for the prestige of having a Chanel compact when others had Clinique. It wasn’t the right makeup for me, and it didn’t sway the bullies, either. Lol. After about a year, my self esteem improved and so did my makeup savvy. About that time, Prescriptives came out.

Genevieve Avatar

Never! For a start, I only purchase products that have been reviewed here (eyeshadows) or have a pretty good rating across the beauty blogsphere. Cosmetics are so expensive in Aus (as well as international shipping rates) that you have to choose wisely.

ShirlJ Avatar

Estée Lauder Pure Color Envy lipstick (Insolent Plum) cuz the salesperson pointed out the magnetic case. I’m a gadget freak. That’s all it took. The lipstick is meh. Not terrible, but a similar shade to many others I own and it wears off quickly.

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