Why You Shouldn't Buy (or Sell) Cosmetics on eBay

August 13, 2015

I'm the self-proclaimed queen of eBay. I've scored designer digs at way less than half the sticker price, and I've sold an item here and there as well. I love me a good "Buy it Now" sale, and there's hell to pay when someone outbids me on that pair of Kate Spade earrings I've had my eye on for seemingly fifteen years.

But through all my years of wheeling and dealing on eBay, there's one thing I've had to cut myself off from, and that's... makeup. For a ton of different reasons.


First of all, it's really hard to spot a fake... until it's too late. That $30 Naked Palette you've been thinking of adding to your cart might look convincing, but once it shows up at your door it's more chalk pastel and craft-store glittery than you remember swatching at Ulta.

Once you've got a fake, it's a tough road to get your money back. You've got to prove to eBay that you've got a dud on your hands, and things can get nasty. The seller might only offer a partial refund, or nothing at all. Worst-case scenario you're out that $30 that you could've saved toward that authentic shadow palette, but I know it's hard to resist a deal.

The worst part is, you really have no idea what you're getting until you get it.

Super convincing, right?

A few months ago, I had a profoundly dumb moment. I saw that quite a few sellers were pricing the Too Faced Chocolate Bar palette pretty cheap, so I thought I would be safe to go ahead and grab one. Boy, was I wrong.

The palette not only arrived to me broken, the product and the packaging smelled harshly of chemicals when it was supposed to smell like chocolate. There was absolutely no pigment to the shadows, and just smelling them gave me a headache. I was super upset, but in retrospect, what was I expecting? You really do get what you pay for.

I ended up buying the AUTHENTIC Chocolate Bar Palette shortly after, and I love it.

You can find out about the authenticity of products with a simple google search, but I found some good "how to spot" posts from Behind Green Eyes. The internet is your friend!

*Another thing to note, it's a million times safer to buy products from direct retailers because you have no idea what kinds of chemicals/pathogens are added to these fake products. There's also no way to guarantee cruelty-free status, even if the brand the fake is based off of is cruelty-free!


This perfume was so cute, but it just wasn't for me.

There are people out there that are capitalizing on the fact that these products are being counterfeited so often. If you're thinking of selling an authentic product, beware. There might be someone out there looking to screw you over, big time.

A few years ago, I bought the Miss Dior Cherie perfume, but it just sat on my shelf for a while. Once I moved house to go to college, I decided it wasn't really my thing, so I put it up on eBay. I hadn't used much of it, so I posted it for around 60% of the price I paid for it.

Not a day later, someone messaged me to ask for a deeper discount. I didn't have a chance to respond before they purchased the item, so they bought it without a discount - at the price I set.

After they paid, they asked for another discount in the form of a 20% refund. I was slightly annoyed and ignored their request. If they had not wanted to pay my price for it, they never should have bought it in the first place. I brushed it off.

Less than a week after I shipped the item, the buyer reported my item as a fake. I knew for a fact it wasn't a fake, as I'd purchased the item from Sephora with my own money. Yet, eBay took their word for it and suggested I offer them a return.

Rolling my eyes and considering this a case of buyer's remorse, I issued a refund allowed the item to be returned to me. Then, somehow, the buyer deactivated his account. I never got my item back, and the man got to keep his $60.

And that, my friends, is why you shouldn't by or sell cosmetics on eBay. 

Have you ever been burned by an eBay transaction?
What would you do if you found out your makeup was fake?

1 comment

  1. Oh wow, I can't believe that person took advantage of you on the perfume- that's so frustrating! I have only bought makeup from eBay a handful of times but never anything expensive. I once saw that the Naked Palette 2 was being sold for about $30 and the seller had good reviews but I went around and messaged a few of the recent buyers who had purchased a palette and asked them if the seller's item was good. They all replied saying it was but I still had my doubts and ended up telling the seller I made a mistake and luckily they refunded me. Recently, I saw all the Naked Palettes for sale on LivingSocial for only $20 each- if only I had waited instead of buying mine 3 years ago haha.

    Anyway, wow, that was a long comment. Btw, I am totally the same with eBay- I religiously search for deals on designer/other items that I didn't get to buy the first time around (i.e. Target Designer clothing collections)


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