Survey Says… May 15th, 2019

Happy Wednesday! Here's this week's survey, which you can copy and paste and share as a comment.

  • Your skin tone/coloring:
  • Do you find sales associates useful?
  • What was your best experience with a sales associate like?
  • What was your worst experience with a sales associate like?

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Your skin tone/coloring: Light-medium warm yellow undertone, dark brown hair and eyes

Do you find sales associates useful? It varies from person to person, can’t make a general statement. But a well trained sale associate can be an useful tool. I just think that some stores should invest more in hiring sales associates with good social and sale skills, along with knowledge of products; and constantly invest in further educating them (especially new hires, who might lack those skills at first). Most stores seem to hire just to fill position for cheap money.

What was your best experience with a sales associate like? I can’t pinpoint a specific one. My best experiences are with sales associates who read the `cues` and let me alone while I look around without bothering me a lot, but are readily available and knowledgeable once I have a question.

What was your worst experience with a sales associate like? Again, I can’t pinpoint a specific one and I actually don’t remember very awful ones. Just people keep bugging me with unwanted help or sales associates who knew less of the products than me being just plain useless. 😆 I didn’t have a very rude encounter yet, but I’m just not the easily offended type.

Haha, my worst experience with a sales associate was in the Sephora at King of Prussia outside of Philadelphia. This pile of hair extensions and visible eyelash glue walked over to ask me if I needed help, and when I said I was just passing the time, she said, “you really ought to think about blending that eyeshadow. Some girls can do avant garde looks, like, real fierce sharp girls can do whatever they want and it looks good. Because your face is so round you want everything to be pretty subtle.”

Seraphine, the worst thing is that I said the DUMBEST thing in reply! This is true, but it wasn’t strategic at all, like, not a good comeback: my eyes are so small that blending makes everything disappear, so I like it the way it is.
Like, I wish I had just said, “your nose contour is way too green for your fake tan,” or whatever.

WOW! SaffyTaffy, that was one super rude one! As in; someone might knock her (or him?) OUT next time they pull that crap! 🤬👊

Fun questions today!

Your skin tone/coloring: Light neutral, green eyes, salt & pepper hair

Do you find sales associates useful? Sometimes…

What was your best experience with a sales associate like?
A Saks Fifth Avenue SA suggested a lipstick shade I never would have chosen for myself. I didn’t even want to try it on, but she was so sweet and funny that I gave in. And she was right…it was a fabulous color for me! It is now a few years later and I still adore this shade. I’ve also been back to her quite a few times over the years. She obviously loves what she does and really knows her makeup.

What was your worst experience with a sales associate like?
Ugh, that would be all the snobby sales associates who don’t want to be bothered helping me, even when I ask for help! Last year, I was looking for a specific Chanel lipstick shade. The SA at the department store counter couldn’t find it in the drawer, so she told me I had the shade name wrong (she didn’t bother to look it up). I told her I was sure I had the name right because I had almost bought it a year earlier. The SA then rolled her eyes and said, “Ohhh, last year. Well, Chanel doesn’t keep shades around that long.” Ummm, ok. After I left, I found that shade available in two other stores, plus Chanel’s own website. And seriously, what lipstick brand discontinues all their shades after one year?!

That’s not even accurate! Jean Godfrey-June wrote an article in Lucky mentioning the Chanel lipstick shade ‘Boy’ in 2009 and it’s still available.

Your skin tone/coloring: Very fair with neutral undertones, grey hair and deep brown eyes.
Do you find sales associates useful? Overall, no. I really don’t like be bugged all the time when I am shopping and I prefer to seek them out and ask any questions that I might have and then leave me alone again.

What was your best experience with a sales associate like? Greet me with a hello at the door. Ask me if they can help me find something. Leave me alone until I ask and let me leave empty handed if that is my choice. In my personal experience the best places in terms of SA’s are small independently owned businesses. Bigger businesses put so many pressures on their SA’s that it is almost impossible for them to meet the goals.

What was your worst experience with a sales associate like? It is a toss up between two Sephora visits. The first involved a Sephora inside a JC Penny’s and the associate had followed me around the store for quite a while. I was looking for a specific skin care item and knew where I was going but was just “checking all the new stuff out”. When I went to actually purchase the product they were sold out. At this point I asked if there was a chance that they had any product in back as I live 3 hours away. She told me “no” and then proceeded to try and sell me a “similar product that works better” than the product I was looking to purchase. I kept telling her I wasn’t interested as I had been using this product for some time and wanted to continue with it. She gave me the nastiest look and wouldn’t help me any further. She literally avoided me throughout the store. The second incident involved a Sephora also and I won’t go into details but the SA was clearly bigoted and since my daughter is of mixed ethnicity she was downright rude and we left, vowing to never use that Sephora again.

Your skin tone/coloring: Next to my name! (blue-green eyes)

Do you find sales associates useful? Sometimes. Like if I don’t see a product out on display, then I can ask the SA for info about where it is or if it’s even in stock.

What was your best experience with a sales associate like? When SA’s treat me respectfully and are friendly, yet not overwhelmingly so. The ones who care enough to actually take the time to help me (and others!) find the right shade or formula for me, personally. Especially when it pertains to foundation and other base products, as I don’t have the easiest to match skintone. So far, I have always been lucky with at least one SA over at our local MAC store that has those skills down pat!

What was your worst experience with a sales associate like? Whenever I’ve had to deal with a pushy or know-it-all SA! Even worse are the ones who trail me through the store. This gives me a very specific bad vibe towards those types of SA’s. This is a very common occurrence at Ulta more than anywhere else I go for cosmetics.

Your skin tone/coloring: See above!

Do you find sales associates useful?
Sometimes, the good ones who obviously try out products or try to learn more about what they are selling.
What was your best experience with a sales associate like?
When I asked for a recommendation for a new brow product as I wanted to branch out of my comfort zone but still find something with good performance, the woman I asked was quick with a few suggestions, and in multiple options-like highend to drugstore versions. She was so open and honest and I didn’t feel like she was just trying to make quick commission on me that I ended up trying the higher end product she told me about and I loved it.
What was your worst experience with a sales associate like?
Probably when I have asked for help and been told oh I have never heard of that or we don’t have that without them checking for me/acting like I am inconveniencing them for asking

Skintone/coloring: Light neutral, dark hair and eyes.
I sometimes find associates helpful. It’s pretty hit or miss.
My best experiences with sales associates are with people who are patient and not condescending. It’s great when I meet an associate who seems passionate about makeup, and can relate to my interest in a product. It’s also greatly appreciated when they’re honest! There used to be an associate at a Sephora who I could count on to help me out and not upsell me!
I don’t have a particular encounter with an associate that was particularly bad. I’ve met plenty of rude, snobby associates, though. Most of them at Mac counters or stores.

Your skin tone/coloring: Light medium, yellow undertones. Dark brown hair & eyes.

Do you find sales associates useful? No. I do most of my beauty shopping online and when I do visit high end counters, I generally know as much about their products as they do, with some exceptions.

What was your best experience with a sales associate like? It was a Dior rep who used me as a demonstration model for a launch night. She used very few products, seemed to just barely touch my face or use any pressure when applying my makeup and as she was speaking to the rest of the audience, she was very much about highlighting what was “good” as far as technique and application went rather than pointing out my acne scaring, etc even when she was concealing it. I didn’t buy anything but she still gave me a gift.

What was your worst experience with a sales associate like? Oooh, it was at a Clinique counter in Wellington in my early 20’s – the rep was hungover and had dirty fingernails and spent a lot of time telling me about her wild night out instead of listening to what I wanted. Then she tried to upsell me a bright orange lipstick that was completely the wrong tone and when I pointed that out, she said I should just be adventurous and try it, so I let her put some on on me (that part of it was done hygienically, at least) and when she finished, she stepped back, looked at me very critically and then went “Yikes!”. I cringed so hard.

Your bad experience reminded me of a MAC SA who talked me into trying a grayish shade that I knew would make me look dead, but hey, I’m adventurous, so I said ok. Well, it made me look like I was a reject from a Walking Dead zombie casting call, but the SA insisted that it looked great and I should keep it on for the rest of my shopping day. She seemed so enthusiastic that I couldn’t tell if she really thought it looked good or if she was planning to laugh behind my back if I actually walked out with it still on. I wiped it off, of course.

Your skin tone/colouring: Porcelain, with pink undertones

Do you find sales associates useful? Sometimes if they are demonstrating how to use a particular beauty product and providing useful advice re my skin type.

What was your best experience with a sales associate like? It was an EA MUA quite a few years ago now, who showed me how to apply my eyeshadows to bring out the best in my eyes. She was really good and I have kept on with her suggestions.

What was your worst experience with a sales associate like? When an Estee Lauder MUA, whom I told I had sensitive skin, and without informing me, applied a lot of toner on my face – I was trying out their Double Wear foundation. Immediately my face began to burn and blister. She tried to tell me it was because I hadn’t exfoliated enough….. Anyway she applied the foundation and it looked so awful on my peeling cheeks that I had to go home and get it off. It took a couple of days for my skin to heal.

That’s horrifying Genevieve! I’m so sorry that happened to you. Clearly Estee Lauder needs to train their MUA’s better. You can’t just go slapping things on people’s faces.

Your skin tone/coloring: above, with green/gray/blue eyes, warm brown hair,

Do you find sales associates useful? It really depends on the situation.

What was your best experience with a sales associate like? I had a very positive experience with a Sephora SA. She was able to help me find what I was looking for and also gave me a few samples of other products that were similar to try and see if I liked them.

What was your worst experience with a sales associate like? I was out shopping with my mom at the mall in my hometown once, and the SA at a clothing store we were about to go into told us we needed to give her our bags so she could hang on to them while we looked around the store. Needless to say, we did not shop there that day or ever again.

Your skin tone/coloring: medium-deep/deep
Do you find sales associates useful? Yes, they’re able to point me in the right direction to an item and/or provide more knowledge on a product.
What was your best experience with a sales associate like? I love the associates at my local Sephora. They’re all so kind and super helpful. I don’t feel like they’re trying to sell things to me unnecessarily.
What was your worst experience with a sales associate like? Being racially profiled and followed around Zara to make sure that I wasn’t stealing *hard eye roll*… this happened twice. The first time, I thought I was being overly sensitive and imagining things. The second time, I knew for sure that I wasn’t imagining it. I’ve never shopped there again. Their clothes are overpriced anyway so it wasn’t a loss for me.

Do you find sales associates useful? Helpful, but not usually useful.
What was your best experience with a sales associate like? A manager in Sephora who knew her products inside and out, and had the rare ability to select the right colors/shades for anyone. And, she was honest and never pushed anything. A real gem.
What was your worst experience with a sales associate like? One I remember was at a Bobbi Brown counter in a large Nordstrom. She was so busy discussing her boyfriend with an associate, that I was invisible to her until I finally interrupted (after several minutes of just standing there) and asked for assistance. She looked at me and barked, “What do you want?” (No joke! Like how could I be so rude?) I said nothing and just walked away, and took it to the cosmetics manager in the executive offices upstairs. I told him what happened and he accompanied me down to the counter. I loved how he said nothing to her, at least not while I was there, but just walked behind the counter, helped me and rang up the sale. I thanked him and left. I didn’t look at the woman to see her reaction. I ignored her as she had ignored me. I’ve never done that before or since. But, it felt good.

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