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to be annoyed and feeling a bit upset at this shop assistant's attitude today?

(21 Posts)
MinesaBottle Fri 19-Apr-13 13:46:06

Really annoyed this afternoon as I popped into a perfume shop near work in my lunch hour, and asked for a sample of a perfume I’ve been considering buying. They have always been happy in the past to make up a sample or two and I have been going there for years so it’s not as if I never buy anything! – more often than not I do.

The assistant was very snotty and told me their policy had changed and I would need to have a consultation to decide which perfumes were suitable for me and then I could have a sample of them. I was a bit nonplussed by this and told her I already knew which one I wanted to try – she just looked down her nose at me and I felt really awkward. No advice on how to go about booking a consultation either. I felt really awkward and as if she was just trying to get rid of me, and left.

I’m fuming now. I appreciate they might not want to just go giving away samples and never selling anything but I have bought loads there over the years and anyway I’d be happy to pay for a sample if necessary. My name is on their database ffs (they keep a record of everything you buy) so they could easily look up what I like anyway without the need for a consultation. Grrr.

The staff there have always been so helpful and welcoming in the past and this woman was just so snotty and uninterested. I’m getting paranoid now thinking that because it’s casual Friday and I was wearing jeans and a (albeit naice) hoody that she just didn’t want me there.

Should I complain? I'm rubbish at complaining.

Wishiwasanheiress Fri 19-Apr-13 13:48:52

Complain. God I hate women like those. Or go back and run her face in the lipstick counter...? (I'm joking obvs here not actually advocating violence! Before someone flames me....)

SenoritaViva Fri 19-Apr-13 13:50:00

She must be new as you didn't say you recognise her from the past. She sounds like she needs to work on her customer service certainly but if they've changed the policy they've changed it. I think 'fuming' is probably an over reaction. Enjoy your weekend and pop in next week to see if you can get someone else more helpful.

Katisha Fri 19-Apr-13 13:50:31

They are not going to sell much perfume if you have to book an appointment are they?

3littlefrogs Fri 19-Apr-13 13:50:38

Write to the MD.

lborolass Fri 19-Apr-13 13:50:44

Which perfumes are suitable for you? What a nonsense, surely the only factor is whether you like the smell, unless they are worried about you being allergic but if that's the case she could have told you that.

I think I'd be finding a new perfume shop.

MinesaBottle Fri 19-Apr-13 13:51:49

Thanks, I'm a bit stressed in general at the moment so probably prone to overreaction! I was just really surprised at her attitude, she was really dismissive. Still, there are other places to buy perfume, they're not the only game in town!

HoHoHoNoYouDont Fri 19-Apr-13 13:51:53

Wander in, hoody up, eating a Greggs pasty and crumble pastry all over the counter grin

iwantavuvezela Fri 19-Apr-13 13:52:04

Minesa sorry for this. A few years ago I was in quite a fashionable little boutique store looking for a jacket. It was a difficult time for me, i was undergoing fertility treatment, feeling a bit crap in general, and had popped into the shop. Two assistants treated me with such contempt, and when I asked if i could try on the jacket that i was looking at in a smaller size, the women practically sniggered and answered that the size i had on (a 12) was my correct size. I felt so humiliated by this treatment that I wrote to their head office. I explained that this was the worst treatment i had ever received, and that I had in fact bought the jacket which was around £130. They wrote back to me and said that the two staff members would be sent on a training course, and they also included a rather lovely top for me by way of apology! I had the last laugh!
If I was you I would complain in a letter .....

MrsHiddleston Fri 19-Apr-13 13:53:24

A perfume consultation... How ridiculous!

Having said that I have never heard of decanting perfume for samples before, a quick spritz to wear for the day and see if the scent lasts and you like it is surely enough?!

MinesaBottle Fri 19-Apr-13 13:55:19

It's a specialist perfume boutique, they have always decanted samples from the tester on request (as long as you don't ask for loads!) Their philosophy is that you should try out a perfume a few times before committing to it. I'm happy to spritz but as I find my sense of smell changes a bit throughout the month I like to try something I'm thinking of buying 2 or 3 times. Especially as I tend to really splash out on perfume so I want to be sure I like it!

daftdame Fri 19-Apr-13 14:02:42

Maybe somebody complained because they sold them an 'inappropriate' perfume! grin. How do you think they organize them? Does the 'expert' match your personality to the perfume? Hmmmph! I can just see the shelf sections now...

They don't want to have too many open sample bottles floating about so have decided to do something that makes sure (bullies you) to buy, buy, buy! Except I think it'll mean bye! bye! from a lot of us just wanting to check out a new perfume before we buy it.

whistleahappytune Fri 19-Apr-13 14:18:18

OP you must complain! That is terrible treatment. As to the consultation - what rubbish! Of course, she may just mean more of a discussion - likes and dislikes, what have you. But her attitude (pardon the pun) stinks!

MrsH, I second the idea of decanting samples within a specialist perfume shop. It's not done in a department store, but in a specialist boutique it will. Often, as OP points out, you need to try it on a few times (during the day, in the evening etc) to really "get" the scent. Also, a quick spritz won't necessarily last until you see your beloved, whose opinion you might want.

OP good luck complaining. Perfume freaks support you!

MinesaBottle Fri 19-Apr-13 14:23:55

I have complained. Well actually my friend who was with me, was so irritated that she tweeted them and they have now apologised and replied asking for more details! I am rubbish at complaining but will do my best.

treas Fri 19-Apr-13 15:23:02

Have the staff not seen Pretty Woman!

Moominsarehippos Fri 19-Apr-13 15:35:12

Consultation? Which shop was this for goodness sake?? If an assistant offered me a consultation I would think they were taking the mickey?

MrsTerryPratchett Fri 19-Apr-13 15:35:23

I tend to really splash out on perfume YABU grin

I speak as someone whose Christmas present was a discontinued Kenzo bottle, about 5 times the price it was on the shelves. <sigh>

MinesaBottle Fri 19-Apr-13 15:46:37

Haha, I don't splash out on much but I blame my mum for teaching me that perfume is one area where quality costs and is (usually) worth it!

Anyway I have heard back from them, they apologised, said the staff member was being a bit too strict (the policy apparently is not to have a full-on session with a staff member trying perfumes, but to discourage people from coming in with lists of samples as long as your arm, and what they would usually do for a regular is just enter the name of the sample into their records so they have an idea of what you like - NOT sit you down and tell you what you should be wearing every time you want to sniff something new!). They were very gracious and are sending me a sample grin

ClearlyDad Fri 19-Apr-13 16:43:13

Write a polite letter to the management. (just like you did here) Explain you're a good, loyal customer (quote a figure... manager's like hearing things like "I have spent in excess of £200 in your shop this year alone" or "my custom has been worth hundreds of pounds to your store in recent years"). Then say that your opinion of their shop has changed dramatically following this incident as you don't expect any customer (especially not a professional who is a source of repeat business) to be treated like a scrounger, and that you feel uncomfortable going in and will take your business elsewhere. Tell them that this is a shame as you were really hoping to buy "perfume of choice".

Laws of human nature will probably see you get a sample/free gift in the post ;)

Icelollycraving Fri 19-Apr-13 16:52:42

Ok,I'm in the industry. She was perhaps a little over zealous,her service was a bit on the crap side but I kind of understand her reluctance to decant. She just didn't hide it very well!
Glad the company are sending you a sample,imagine it'll be a small size saleable size that you receive.

Icelollycraving Fri 19-Apr-13 16:53:44

Ps not saying she was right in her behaviour btw.

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