In October 2015, a Californian woman by the name of Elena Davoyan claimed to have contracted oral herpes through a lipstick sampler from a local Sephora in Los Angeles. After being diagnosed by a doctor and realising the lifelong effect of the sexually transmitted disease, Davoyan has recently sued Sephora over “what is labelled as intentional infliction of emotional distress and negligent infliction of emotional distress,” according to a source.
The allegations have yet to be properly verified by the authorities, but a few professionals in the medical field are countering the woman’s lawsuit over the “incurable lifelong affliction,” naming a few other sources that could’ve contributed to the disease. “Herpes virus is very prolific and over 60 percent of the adult population is positive from herpes simplex one and they didn’t get it all from lipstick,” said Dr. Amesh Adalja, member of the Infectious Diseases Society of America’s Public Health Committee.
A Sephora spokesperson responded to the crisis with:
“While it is our policy not to comment on litigation, the health and safety of our clients is our foremost priority. We take product hygiene very seriously and we are dedicated to following best practices in our stores.”
However, as clean their practices may be, or how skin-friendly a brand claims to be, there’s still a possibility that our bodies will react to a product if it’s filled with nothing but chemicals. It is after all, an industry saturated with beauty-conscious people and a heck ton of ingredients, sourced from various corners of the world. So other than worrying about when is the next big sale, we should worry about what we put on our bodies, so here are four fool-proof methods of shopping at Sephora to avoid mishaps you can’t reverse.
Don’t test the product on your face
It’s hard to resist piling up free makeup testers on your face – especially when a particular lipstick shape is calling your name – but push that thought aside and swatch everything on your arms, especially products that are used on the lips, so any sort of bacteria or debris won’t be passed down to you. Opt to swatch foundation and concealer shades on your neck or jawline, and don’t forget to wipe it all off afterwards with the makeup remover that’s available in store. The tools available in every Sephora counter can also be used to sanitise the product if you really insist on testing it on your face.
Don’t be shy to ask for beauty samples you can take home
Apparently, shoppers are entitled to try out three samples from three different categories (perfume, skincare, cosmetics). Though I’ve personally never packed up that many samplers, I’ve taken home one trusty sampler that helped me decide on an expensive product. So let’s say you have your eye on a pricey bottle of Givenchy or Estee Lauder foundation but you’re unsure if it’ll fit, just let a Sephora assistant know and they’d be able to pack a small sample for you to take home. If you really suck at hunting for the correct shade and finding your undertone, let the Sephora assistant know too.
Online shopping has its perks
Long-time Sephora shoppers would know that the web store always offer users free samples, though they vary according to season and promotions. Plus, you also get free shipping when you purchase above RM80 (highly possible considering the average price of a Sephora item). Ultimately, shopping online will be useful because you have a designated shade-finder that helps you match your shade and a detailed description of what you’re getting yourself into. Besides, the user reviews under every product will go a long way in determining whether it’ll work for you, so read them thoroughly.
If all else fails, you have 14 days to return the item
Allergic reactions can be hard to tell, however, once a symptom pops up you’d have to check if there’s any correlation between it and the product you’re using by a medical expert who will provide you a solid doctor’s note that enables you to get a return or exchange from Sephora. Remember, you can’t sue a company if your claims are shady so be sure to know what you’re doing. With that being said, keep your receipts and packages in case you need to return it. But if you adhered to step one to three on this list, you should be good.
Christmas season is almost here! Keep your eyes open for discounts and sales on Sephora Malaysia on Facebook.