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Vine Vera/Orogold Cosmetic Scam--BEWARE!
Those pushy people who almost attack you at the mall from their kiosk are gypsy thieves so you need to avoid them at all costs. They pull you in with a free sample but then proceed to try to sell you some trashy, cheap products they claim will work miracles. With parabens and mineral oil...really?
The prices are made up as they go along and then they discount it and throw in some "free" stuff. The gypsy mentality is like shopping in Mexico...you end up with a bunch of junk at prices that are ridiculous. They try to say that a mask is $2,000.!!! Really??? They start off at $2,000 for something that is worth $2 and then start with their negotiating. Who does that if they are legitimate? When is the last time you haggled at Nordstrom's?
I bought some of their face stuff and trust me...it is THE WORST PRODUCT ON THE MARKET. I would prefer L'Oreal over this stuff. A friend is an esthetician and she laughed at the ingredients. Resveratrol isn't going to penetrate the skin by putting it on your face. A joke! If wine could do that we wouldn't need to drink it would we?
The worst part is that although they don't mention it to you there IS NO REFUND. They will exchange the product from one AWFUL product to another. But how do they know how much the exchange is for because all the prices are made up on the spot? Don't waste your money on this junk...go to a reputable store with proven products who will stand behind the products and NOT RIP YOU OFF.
Sure you can go to the website and they have ridiculously made up prices there too. Their website is just to make it look like they have a real business and not some shady scam that preys on shoppers in the mall. They have no business. No results. No store. No integrity. Only a band of gypsies who lure you in and take advantage of poor, unsuspecting fools.
Oh, by the way, they also scammed my credit card and overcharged me a lot of $$$$ because I didn't have my glasses on so I could check the amount before signing. A totally illegitimate con that this company uses to get your money. STAY AWAY FROM THESE LIARS!
Re: Vine Vera/Orogold Cosmetic Scam--BEWARE!
Please read this post I found online about what a scam this is.
Dec. 4, 2012. Update.
I’ve done some more looking into Oro Gold Cosmetics, and it appears to be an offshoot (perhaps even a shell company) of the “Dead Sea Cosmetics” businesses that have been under investigation by the US and other governments, as revealed by a cable from the American Embassy in Tel Aviv released by Wikileaks.
These companies recruit young Israelis who have just finished their military service. They send them to America (and other countries) on tourist visas, put them up in apartments (for which they charge room and board) and set them to work on their stores and kiosks on a commission basis. I think this explains why the sales people are so aggressive and manipulative, and so willing to lie to customers. After a few months, the employees go back to Israel.
In addition to scamming consumers and exploiting workers, these companies seem to also be involved in organized crime, including drug trafficking and money laundering.
Here is an interesting article about how these kiosks work in England.
But it gets even more interesting than that. I decided to take a look at the ingredients for the peeling product that the salesman had applied to me. While I couldn’t find the ingredient list at the Oro Gold website, others listed water and polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) as the two main ingredients. It’s been a long time since High School chemistry, but Wikipedia was helpful enough to explain that PVA is used mostly for its film-forming and adhesive qualities. In other words, it’s a glue. A quick search for PVA and glue, quickly confirmed that PVA is the main ingredient in household glue.
Do you remember what happens when you get some glue on your skin and let it dry? Come on, give it a try and then rub it off! Yep, the glue you rub off looks very much like skin and your actual skin feels much smoother and softer. Their $100 peeling gel is just a trick.
It would appear that Oro Gold is not just literally scummy, but also scammy.
Dec. 15th update
I found a New York Times article about the lack of benefits of gold in cosmetics. It’s worth a read.
Also, apparently the Oro Gold peel does not contain PVA (see comments below). Instead it contains carboner, a thickener, which when combined with cetrimonium chloride and rubbed on the skin, forms white beads. The colorant in the product is probably meant to make these look like skin. This combination does help remove dead skin, but then again, so does glue.
Jan. 22 update
Last week I had a long phone conversation with Judy White, the Costumer Service Manager with Mazal Enterprises, the company behind OroGold. This is what I learned from the conversation:
- Mazal Enterprises is the manufacturer and distributor of a number of different beauty lines, including OroGold, HerStyler, VineVera, Lionesse and Vivo Per Lei among others.
- They are a private, family-owned company and they are not related to Death Sea Cosmetics or another company.
- They have both company-owned stores and licensee stores. I think she said there were 200 stores world wide, but she couldn’t tell me which proportion was each or which companies were running stores with the Oro Gold name. She did say that their licensees agree to only do business with their company. But not knowing who the licensees are, it’s impossible to know if they might be the same people connected with the “Dead Sea cosmetic mafia”, to give it a name
- She blamed all the bad customer service to licensees who were not doing their job correctly She says they have been closing down kiosks (which she claims have never been operated by Mazel) as well as OroGold stores that have caused problems. She said all stores in Vegas have been closed down.
- She said they don’t have any stores in the Philippines. If there is a store there, they don’t know about it.
- She says they are trying hard to deal with the customer service problems in the company by making all their stores company-run. But she claimed that took time.
- She says that she will be happy to send a refund to anyone who contacts her. Her e-mail is email@example.com
Unfortunately, there were other things she couldn’t explain:
- How is it that OroGold sales people throughout the world use the exact same selling techniques, and how come those techniques are the same ones used by Dead Sea Cosmetics and other companies. She tried to argue that it had to do with individual sales people getting over enthusiastic, but couldn’t explain why they would all say the same things, show the same products, down to the same trick of folding the receipt so people can’t tell the products cannot be returned.
- She couldn’t explain why so many people throughout the world have reported that OroGold sales people are Israeli (or otherwise have an accent that might indicate that they’re from Israel).
- She couldn’t explain /why/ the chain had a “no returns” policy on unopened products. She brought up having bought some make up at Nordstroms – I imagine to make the point that she wouldn’t be able to return it – and was surprised when I told her Nordstroms would be more than happy to take it back.
As Judy kept emphasizing that the company wanted to change its image, but that would take time, I mentioned that they could eliminate most complaints if they accepted returns on unopened products (she says they will take back open products if they cause an allergic reaction). After all, the biggest complaints are that people feel ripped off. Accept returns and that goes away. She seemed to get the idea and said she’d bring up to her superiors. Personally, I think that the whole hard sale/overprice/lying/no-refunds method is the intentional modus operandi of Mazal, but she genuinely seemed to be unaware of that. Meanwhile, however, if you want a refund do e-mail her (and then let me know if you’ve gotten it).
Re: Vine Vera/Orogold Cosmetic Scam--BEWARE!
I got scammed and I am not proud of myself because I usually don't fall for this stuff! I too was at the mall. It was exactly as the previous author described it. A kiosk with a very pushy sales person. I was waiting on a friend so I stopped to listen. WRONG!
There are no prices on any of the products. They have the Vine Vera showcased but that is not what they are selling. They show you a website for Vine Vera however they are selling a product called Vito.
They promise results and if you use the product up or anything happens to the containers within 2 years you will be given a free refill no questions asked as long as you have the receipt. The sales person talks so fast and has an answer for everything you ask and they will tell you exactly what they think you want to hear. They are very well trained.
They will throw in free products based on how much they charge you for the items you are actually buying.I bought 2 items they gave me three fulls items for free. You are not informed that there are no refunds until the receipt is in your hand. They show you on the receipt how to get your free refills which distracts you from seeing the NO RETURN policy. I took the products home and went online and saw this report.I also tried to locate a website for this Vito product, it was not listed on Vine Vera or anywhere via google. I thought I was in a good mall, however the mall is all about revenue/sales making money, don't forget that!
I went back the next day to return the items and a woman was buying the same products I had purchased for half the price. I demanded a refund and they said that was not possible, that it would come out of their pocket. I said I wasn't leaving until I received my refund, they threatened to call the mall police.
Then they told me to call the customer service number listed on the receipt, I did and I had to leave a message as no one answered. I called 5 times and each time there was no answer so I waited at the kiosk for a return call
. Finally, I received a call back.
They agreed to a full refund since I had returned the items within 24 hours and I had an apparent reaction to the products that were put on my skin the previous day by the sales person.
By the way I need to mention that prior to going back to the mall, I put some red food coloring in a spray bottle and sprayed the two places they had put the product on me the previous day which was the back of my hand and my arm. I wiped off just enough coloring to resemble a rash, then I returned to the mall. I had no intention of using the "rash" unless I had to. I did and it worked.
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