How could consumer-written reviews improve?

I would like it to be easier to indicate what shade was purchased/is being reviewed for products with a lot of shades. It should also be clear that the review is from a verified buyer (someone who actually bought the product), and I’d like a way to sift through/omit reviews from services like Influenster if I desire. It would also be great if more understood that “one star, wrong color” kind of reviews are limited in usefulness–it’s great to hear that X color didn’t work for Y coloring but what about the formula?!

— Christine
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Keep it objective. Make comparisons–like “this is the most expensive, and is/isn’t worth it because…” Descriptions of texture, buildability, lasting power (a lot of the same criteria used here on Temptalia!)
Eliminate the phrase “it doesn’t disappoint”–it’s meaningless. I don’t know if you have high expectations or low ones. How can I tell what disappoints you or doesn’t? Also, eliminate “gamechanger,” for the same reasons. It’s over used and come on now–it’s 2019. This looks just like several other products on the market, and it probably is but maybe better/worse in different ways?

I think it would be great if AI was applied to remove the “damaged in shipping” and other one word or irrelevant reviews. I don’t think people are going to put more effort into writing them, but tech can help us weed out things that aren’t relevant or are fake. Banning bots and looking for fake reviews that are all similar, coming from the same IP address.

I have pretty much the same concerns as you. A one-star rating with the simple line “bad color” or “didn’t work” is so useless we should collectively have the option to remove that particular rating. Same with reviews of “I hate the name”….seriously? That’s why you gave a product one star? I have seen that come up before without any indication the reviewer ever actually touched the product, much less purchased it.

I wish Sephora/Ulta would have a “verified purchase” next to the name of the reviewer, so we know that they at least bought the item… I don’t know what “verified reviewer” actually means. Does that mean they have a valid email or they bought the product?

I don’t know about Sephora but Ulta does have verified buyer next reviews I believe. Doesn’t make it a thorough, objective and meaningful review though

Swatches and ingredient list. Most of the people doing reviews in their bloggers don’t put the ingredient list, which is important for us with allergies.

Actually, many brands don’t do it either, which is a reason I don’t buy products from them. We shouldn’t have to hunt the net for something that should be available on their site (looking at you Make Up For Ever).

Why is so dificult to make foundations/concealers reviews in blogs or YT videos and put swatches? Put some drops of foundation in your hand and show it NEXT TO THE CAMERA. The same with concealers. If you won a PR package don’t just show your shade, but all of them.

Some of us don’t have a Sephora nearby to try these things. Mine is like 5h driving away.

PS: I am not considering reviews in the brand or store sites. These are filtered in my book.

This question was actually trying to get at how regular consumers could improve their reviews or how retailers who facilitate those consumer reviews could improve, not bloggers/YouTubers/influencers 🙂

But I would also add be objective of course. Talk about the pigmentation, wear time, scent, texture, blendability. How a product works badically

This is an interesting subject and I agree with everything you have written, Christine. I am more and more finding reviews don’t really do anything for me. Unless you know the person, such as your blog, most of what they write is out of context. I mean even if Jane Doe purchased the product, it is verified and she give the product a glowing review, we don’t know anything about Jane Doe. The option to list colouring doesn’t tell me anything either as there are vast differences between skin tones that are grouped under the general terms of fair, medium and dark. Undertone, eye and hair colour also play a part but most importantly individual preferences, skin type and general expectations are not known and they all influence reviews. Having followed the blog for awhile now, I know that different shades within a line can have vastly different reviews so I most agree with your opening statement. I would love to know which shade you are reviewing. I just feel like unless the vast majority of reviews are really negative or positive, I am going to have to make my own decision and I use Temptalia and my own experience to guide me.

If the writer:
1) Waits till they own and use the product. “I’m a big _____ fan, and this looks sooooo pretty!!!! I can’t wait till it’s released!!!!” 5 Stars.
2) Doesn’t trash items for non-product related reasons. “I hate this color on me,” “I was sent the wrong item,” “Shipping took too long,” etc. 1 Star. None of that is the product’s fault.
3) Is honest, and gives real information about the product. “I love this lipstick color on me!” and nothing else isn’t helpful. Saying, “I love this lipstick color on me! Also, the formula is really creamy and long-lasting. The scent seemed a bit strong, but I didn’t notice it after wearing it for a few minutes” is.
4) Include skin-tone, skin-type, eye color, etc. if relevant to the product. It helps those of us with similar features figure out whether the product will work for us.

I would like to see swatches more often of products – there are some reviewers that don’t swatch but just rave.
Secondly, less about forthcoming sales and more of reviews would be helpful too.
And the whole issue of fake positive comments on retailers websites makes them less credible too.

Yes to nearly everything listed above.

I’ve sometimes wished that vendor websites were programmed with two rating systems: one for the vendor and the other for the product, that way if you wanted to rate very high for the product but low for the service (or vice versa), you can state your feelings without feeling like you’re compromising.

If you are going to take the time to leave a review, go into detail. Color, texture, wear, blend-ability, fragrance, compatibility with other products if relevant. Comments like “it works for my fine hair”, is helpful. Or “it didn’t work for me because of this”. I find these kind of reviews helpful.

I rarely read user reviews as most of the aren’t helpful at all. I agree with what most everyone has said already, and the two system mentioned by Alecto is such a good idea.

Ban tap-to-talk submissions that are unedited walls of text without punctuation. Most sites seem to moderate this OK but I’ve seen it slip through on Amazon lately.

I agree on more filtering for things like item shade and review source. Also, maybe there could be a separate section or at least a filter for complaints in the wrong color/damaged item/bad shipping vein?

I think it’s so goofy when a consumer review says “I won’t be repurchasing” for something like a lipstick- there are about six people on the planet who need to repurchase lipstick shades, and that’s because they’re married to one shade. A better way to say it, and the way Make Up Alley set up reviews originally, would be, “if I could do it all over again, I wouldn’t have bought this.”

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