Monday, July 23, 2012

Why I Canceled my Glossybox Subscription

I don't usually do rant-y posts like this, but I feel it's necessary in this case.  I received terrible service from Glossybox, and I know I am not alone.  My experience with Glossybox has been awful, and I feel compelled to share it with others who might be considering the service.  This will be a long post.

Like many others, I was excited to hear that the Glossybox beauty sample subscription service was finally coming to the U.S.  Glossybox had received fantastic reviews from many European bloggers, and I recall that one time they included in their box a full-size Rouge Bunny Rouge lip gloss.  That was enough to pique my interest.  Priced at $21 per month, they charge more than other sample services (such services average $10-$15 here in the U.S.), but they promised to include larger travel-sized samples.  I thought it was definitely worth checking out.

I didn't make it in time to get the May box, which was a bummer because it was a fantastic box that included a mini Burberry lipstick (and if you have read my blog you know all about my love for Burberry), but I was able to sign up for June and was certain June's box would be just as fabulous.

I paid for my subscription on May 14.  It wasn't until 6 weeks later on June 28 that I received confirmation that my June box had shipped, which irked me but at least it was finally on its way.  I clicked the tracking information, and it said that my box had been received by their third party shipper in Kearny, NJ on June 22.  That was the last update the tracking information would receive.

Although I was annoyed, I waited patiently for my box.  I checked the tracking information daily, only to see that my box was still in Kearny, NJ.   I contacted Glossybox about the issue and was told that the boxes had shipped out late and that's why I still hadn't received mine (no kidding!  I figured that much out myself), but that the box was on its way and I would receive it soon.  Despite my repeated questions, no one addressed the issue of the tracking information saying my box had been in NJ since June 22.

On July 2, I still had not received my box and the tracking information still had not updated, but I received an email from Glossybox confirming that I had been charged for a July box.  This upset me, because I had been counting on evaluating my June box before deciding whether I wanted to continue with July.  This was why I had selected the month-to-month option as opposed to a 6-month or 1-year membership.

Many others were upset as well at being charged for July's box before they received the June box.  Several people complained via Facebook about this, and Glossybox merely stated that it's their policy to charge in the beginning of the month and ship at the end; they were not at all apologetic and did not say anything about fixing the problem in the future.  Their Facebook page became inundated with unsatisfied customers who could not get an adequate response from customer service letting Glossybox know how they felt and asking to be refunded.  I was one of those people, and Glossybox deleted my comment.

I again contacted Glossybox via email and was told that it was their policy to charge in the beginning of the month and ship at the end, which was why I was charged for July before I had received my June box. I was finally able to get the July charge refunded after threatening to file a dispute with my credit card company.

In the beginning of July, reviews of the June boxes started to trickle out.  A lot of people were disappointed in their boxes.  Many reported that one of the samples, a small bottle of body wash, had leaked all over the inside of the box while it was in transit, coating everything on the inside of the box and ruining the box itself.  Glossybox was requesting that anyone who had this complaint send them photo evidence of the damaged box.  In several cases, people reported on Facebook that instead of replacing all the damaged contents of the box, Glossybox merely sent a replacement body wash sample.  I was very disappointed to hear all of this was going on, and I was growing more anxious to see in what condition my box would arrive.

On July 10, almost two months after I had paid and two weeks after it had shipped, I still had not received my June box.  I again contacted Glossybox.  I was told that they looked at my tracking info (FINALLY), and a replacement box would be shipped to me ASAP.

On July 18, I still had not received an update or tracking information for the replacement box, so I contacted them again regarding the replacement.  I  have not received a response.  It is now July 23, two weeks after I was assured that a replacement would be sent, and I have not received any update or tracking information for the replacement box.

I called customer service today to tell them to forget about sending the replacement and to just refund my payment.  I was told that my replacement box had in fact shipped on July 16 (a week after I was told it would go out ASAP) and they could not give me a refund for a box that has already shipped.  For some reason, no tracking number was ever sent to me even though Glossybox said that it should have been sent.  The replacement box is now somewhere in Indiana and is still making its way to Seattle.  I am fairly certain that if my June box ever arrives, it will not make it here until August.

I have been a Birchbox subscriber for about six months now, and have never once experienced a problem.  Some boxes have been better than others in terms of my personal taste, but I would say that in terms of quality, overall the boxes have gotten better over time.  I receive my boxes in the same month that I am billed, and the boxes always arrived nicely packaged with nothing leaking, missing, or otherwise.  From what I have heard from others who have experienced problems, Birchbox has addressed the issue immediately and to the customer's satisfaction.  All of this, and Birchbox is only $10 per month.  I haven't even been able to get a box from Glossybox.

Glossybox has stated that in response to overwhelming customer demand, they will start charging people closer to when the boxes will ship (they will charge second week and ship the third week, I believe).  On their Facebook page they said that everyone will have their tracking information this month by July 25.  The way I see it, with how extremely slow their shipping has been, most people are still likely to receive their boxes sometime in August.  It is also likely that many will again be charged for August boxes before they receive their July box.  Although I hope it does, I do not see how this new policy is going to change anything at Glossybox.

Glossybox has been all too eager to part people from their money, but very reluctant to provide the product or adequate service related to the product.  It has been 2.5 months since I paid for my June box, and I have yet to receive it.  The replacement that they told me they would send two weeks ago is still nowhere near arriving in Seattle.  Any response Glossybox has given to my requests has been after repeated attempts on my part to contact them, and their responses in general have not adequately addressed my concerns.  I have canceled my Glossybox subscription, and I am not likely to return.  It would take a major turn-around for me to consider purchasing a subscription in the future.  For the record, in case it isn't clear, it is not necessarily that I have had problems, but how poorly Glossybox has handled those problems, that made me decide to cancel and will keep me from going back.

If you are trying to decide whether to join Glossybox, I urge you to do research beforehand!  Check out their Facebook page, where many customers have posted their dissatisfaction with the service (although I know that Glossybox sometimes deletes these comments), and check out what bloggers have to say.  And finally, understand that while not everyone has had problems with the service, in the strong likelihood that you are one of the many who do encounter difficulties, Glossybox will probably not be of much help.


  1. I'm sad to hear they haven't learned anything from the complaints in the UK. They have a bad reputation when it comes to customer service and I've heard many people have struggled to obtain replacements, cancel or receive refunds.

    I will be interested to hear what you got in your box when it finally arrives. I suspect it would be hard to enjoy it, even it if it is good, simply because of all the hassles.
    Jane x

  2. Jane i didn't know that they had a bad reputation for customer service in the UK! I should have looked a bit harder. Even though I hadn't seen much, everything I had seen was good in terms of the samples themselves, so I just went ahead with it. I will definitely be more wary in the future. I'll be sure to share the contents of and my thoughts on the box when it comes, despite the fact that I really no longer even want it.

  3. I'm in the US, but I too have had horrendous customer service with Glossybox. So horrendous to the point I had to report them to the Better Business Bureau. Did so a few days ago and just waiting for their reply. They have a pretty good success rate, so I suggest you too file a complaint. Such a shame because they could have so much going for them..

  4. Thx so much for your review. I just joined Glossybox after reading an article on instyle really promoting them.. Low and behold I never received my box and the customer service is lackluster at best - they dont even respond. I ordered the box in April and its nearing a month and still no product or response. I know the mail can be flaky but regardless having no word from Glossy even to say sorry or will get that fixed is just pitiful. I have left voicemails with them and emails to no avail. Unfortunately I now have to wait until the my Paypal disputed clears (a few weeks) but at least Paypal stands up for buyers. Thats just pretty pathetic. I have to go through a third party to correct this. A replacement box would have been fine, but they didnt even give me THAT option. Honestly it sounds like they are just getting worse. Birchbox looks great I will totally give them a shout!

  5. I'm so glad I found this page. I was just in the process of signing up for glossybox and decided to look for a promo code. After reading this, I won't bother. Thank you!

  6. I should have read this before I sign up. Now I can already feel the lack of their costumer service. Hopefully my may box arrive before new new month starts and charge me and have to wait for ever.

  7. To bad I didn't read this last week when I signed up for glossybox! I would interested in knowing if u received your box or your replacement box?

    1. I did receive a box in early August 2012, but I was so unimpressed I think I tossed most of it. Nothing was remarkable, and it was definitely not worth the frustration. I hope your experience is better than mine!

  8. I also had bad experiences with glossy box. Their boxes NEVER! arrive on time but they are so quick to take your money. I changed my address and i did not receive 2 boxes. I emailed customer service amd their statement to me was "Thanks for writing in! Unfortunately, all address changes must be made by the first day of the month in order to take effect for that month's GLOSSYBOX shipment. This is stated under the terms and conditions on In order to retrieve your GLOSSYBOX, you must contact USPS to have it forwarded to you. This is BS! Because i did change my address before the begining on the month. They are just crap, i cancelled my subscription and i will NEVER return. DO NOT SUBSCRIBE TO THEIR BOXES!

  9. I wish I had read this blog post before ever bothering to try out Glossybox. I was so disappointed with my experience and because they take your money so quickly, had to pay for a month even after cancelling because they had already went ahead and charged me. My first box had a shampoo and conditioner set in it and they had leaked all over the box and never did they respond to my complaint on that issue. Their customer service is such a huge turn off. I have tried out Birch Box and if I decide to continue any subscription box (I have been testing out a bunch), it will definitely be them and I will not pay for a Glossybox again!

  10. Oh dear. I got reeled in by all the lovely instagram photos and signed up in March. They charged me for April before I received March's box and, last week, when I inquiries about when they intended to ship March's box and, after a few days, they told me my address was incomplete. I went back to the site and found that my street name was missing. No matter what I did to add it, it just wouldn't stick. I'm Canadian and figured it must be a system glitch but nobody contacted me to let me know. I wonder how long that would have gone on for... They changed my address for me but I had to reach out again to inquire about when they would ship my March box, this time mentioning that I'm a blogger and can't wait to review their products and services. They say it was shipped out the night of the 13th. We'll see. I'd better not be charged for May before I get both March and April.

  11. Yep, I am trying to cancel. I ordered a March box for the first time. I received it and was not happy. Sorry i do not think products are worth $21. I went to cancel because, i thought why am I spending $21 on samples??!! and when I did go to cancel my sub, of course a tiny note saying I had to cancel by March 15, if I do not want to receive the April 2016 box. Seriously!!?? I do not want another box of junk samples, that companies give a way for free. My march 2016 box, had a junkie hand cream, which I can get for the same size for $2.00 at the drugstore. a sample of too face lip product. 2 tiny vats of some kind of cream with no info on what is in it. a eyeliner, which I could get a comparable one for $5 dollars at the drug store. And a luxie brush, that they say retails for $15, when I see something like that should not be selling for more then $5.00 for a brush. Was just at TJmaxx, and they had a comparable one contour brush for under $5.00, practically the same handle in black and silver. I contacted my CC to let them know that if they do charge, that it was unauthorized for the month of April. These companies are in it to make money. when they claim those product values are more, they are most certainly over exxagerated items of crap.

  12. I love my BoxyCharm so much it seriously got me addicted to sub boxes LOL So I figured I would try out a couple more. Glossybox.. HA. What a nightmare. I waited until after their crappy June 2016 box passed and joined in July. They took it upon themselves to charge me on the 2nd and again on the 4th. I thought this was an accidental double charged and emailed them about it. No response. Randomly I get the June box in my mail 2 weeks later. I'm like wtf I didn't order this. So I email the company again. Got a response of basically eff you we told that's what we were doing, even going as far as to claim they had sent several emails regarding this. Which they definitely had not, they didn't even send tracking. I told them I want a 100% refund and to cancel my sub all together. If they don't Ill just call my credit card co(cap 1) they are awesome about handling disputes like this. And just cuz, in the box the 3 full size products were a no name crap mascara $20, a no name junkie bright red lip gloss $20 and a $3 nail polish. The rest was samples. A tiny hair oil sample, a pore cleanser which had burst open all over the place and some hair whipped cream.. Absolutely horrible. Especially when you have BoxyCharm, also $21 a month sending you 5 full sized products AND its brands you know like Farmacy and OFRA etc.. they set the bar high they did lol

  13. I ordered 7/25 and their website indicates the box has not even been packed yet for shipment. It is now 8/15. I contacted them via email and got an automated email back that it would be 14 days until they can respond to my email. I cancelled for August just in time! Maybe one day my July box will show up!