Having to a write a post like this about a company that I loved saddens me so much. But I believe when a company treats a customer as they have treated this situation itshould be available on the internet as a word of warning to other makeup artists or consumers that consider buying from them.
This post will be a simple recounting of my and JD Makeup’s experience trying to get help about our missing order.
On 20 Feb a friend (JD Makeup) and I put in an order with Concrete Minerals. They were having a huge sale in preparation of their rebranding campaign to get rid of stock that still had the old labels on. Considering South Africa’s bad exchange rate we were incredibly happy about this opportunity. Our order was just over a $100 which translates into about R1200 (South African Rand). We got the order confirmation immediately and noticed we’d accidentally added one shadow we had decided not to get. With Emily’s (Concrete Mineral’s owner) help we swapped it out for one we rather wanted. So far so good and the customer services seemed great. So we settled in for long wait till our package would arrive.
It’s worth mentioning that I’ve ordered from Concrete Mineral’s twice before and never had an issue with their customer service, but then those orders had no hiccups to them.
This order however had a major hiccup.
After about a month I started getting worried. I order from international sites every now and then and have gotten used to the time periods and possible delays. I found some contact addresses for staff at customs and set to mailing each asking if they can check whether our package had arrived in South Africa yet. I also went to my local post office and asked them to check for me. But to no avail. Eventually it became apparent that this package was most likely lost.
I mailed Concrete Minerals on 10 April:
I just want to follow up on this order. It’s been almost 2months since this was sent.I’ve checked with the local postal services; Nothing has been received yet. Usually a package from the US takes less than a month.
Can you maybe investigate from your side what has happened to it?”
And again on 15 April:
Hi. Any feedback on this yet? See my query below that I sent 10 April.
When posting to their wall got no response, I commented on some of the images they were uploading. I think I left about 3 before I got a response. Not on the page mind you. All those messages were deleted, before being resolved!19 Days later! I finally received a response from Emily on 29 April:
My social media manager asked me to reach out to you regarding a missing order! It looks like your last order left us February 23rd and was last scanned by the USPS at the Los Angeles international shipping facility on February 26th. This is typically the last time tracking info is updated for orders en route to South Africa.
Were you ever contacted regarding import duties/fees owed on this package? I know the fees in South Africa are pretty steep, somewhere around 40% for cosmetics! You’ve ordered from us before, have you ever had to pay import fees for previous orders?
We’ve gone ahead and opened a claim with the USPS regarding this package and they typically respond within less than 24 hours. Thanks so much for being patient, I’ll be in touch with you shortly!
All the best,
Yes i have ordered from you before, twice in fact, and I am aware of the procedure here. I have followed up with the South African Postal Service, but they still have no record of that package entering South Africa (as stated in one of the previous mails I’ve sent regarding this issue). Then again it’s been more than 2 weeks (first mail sent on 10 April) since I started trying to reach your company regarding this issue, so I’ll mail them again to see if this has changed.
Fyi, the customs fees are 20% and 14%VAT on cosmetics, and there’s still handling and admin fees; yes, it’s steep, so I do not make orders like this lightly. Also why myself and another MUA, ordered together on this order.
And I’m only patient still because I have little other course of action, if i have a hope of retrieving our order. But seriously, it shouldn’t take 3 emails, and just as many messages to your facebook page, over a course of 2+ weeks, before a person can get some feedback on an issue like this.
I followed up with the SA Postal Service and it was confirmed that there was no record of the package being received in South Africa.
So I sent another mail to Concrete Minerals on 5 May, forwarding the response from the Postal Service to them:
2 Days later I left a message on their Facebook page again asking whether I’ll have to wait 2 weeks again before I get a response and making it clear that I hated having to use tactics like this to get any form of Customer Service. The next morning I checked whether I had gotten any response from them.
They had deleted my post and blocked me from posting on their Facebook page!!
To date (10 May) I have not received any response and to my knowledge neither has JD Makeup. Not by email or through Facebook. If this changes I’ll update here.
This is truly horrible non-existent Customer Service and I can’t believe Concrete Minerals would treat their clients like this. The irony of it all is this is what they post on their website’s FAQ section about possible missing orders:
Well myself and JD Makeup has been left hanging in a horrible show of incompetent Customer Service.
If Concrete Minerals reaches out to us to help us salvage this situation we will welcome it. After all we love the product be we no longer the love the company after how they’ve treated us.
The BBB didn’t manage to get a response out of them and unfortunately the chargeback wasn’t allowed as the bank said it had to happen within the first month after purchase. As we had to wait at least two months to be sure our package was well and truly gone….needless to say we have no refund and no product.