Jaclyn Hill Cosmetics: What options do you have?

Saturday, June 15, 2019

Used under U.S. Fair Use.
First, let me preface this by saying I’m not an attorney and I don’t work for the banks. I am a business owner myself and have had a few incidents where a customer had initiated a payment dispute (aka a chargeback). Two most recent ones were because they got pissed off that we didn’t want to refund them (our computer store policy is no refunds after 90 days on hardware and no refunds on software or service). They didn’t get their money back because we disputed their dispute with our store policies showing that they signed a form knowing our policies.

We’ve had some crazy customers over the last 15 years including one who called up SCREAMING because the custom computer we built wouldn’t work. Turns out she didn’t have the computer monitor plugged into the outlet so it wasn't getting power. Come to think of it, a lot of the crazy stories usually revolves around a customer not having something plugged. So glad that chapter of our lives is pretty much coming to a close but I digress. As a consumer, I’ve also have had to initiate some chargebacks against companies in the past and some bank and credit card companies make it easy to file a chargeback and some make it hard to do so. Not impossible, just hard.

With the issues with the Jaclyn Hill lipsticks, you do have options on what you can do.

  1. Request a replacement. You can contact Jaclyn Hill Cosmetics via email at help@jaclyncosmetics.com. Just be aware that people who did request a replacement are currently getting the same coded (GC05A) lipsticks as replacements. These lipsticks are presumed to be old. Based on Jaclyn’s video we know that at least one lipstick ("That Girl") made in May 2019 has a batch code of 135H which does not match the batch code on the lipsticks sent to people in late May and early to mid-June, 2019.
    Image from Twitter user @NoThisIsEllie
    Image used under U.S. Fair Use
  2. Request a refund directly from Jaclyn Cosmetics. Unfortunately, this may not be easy because there are people on social media claiming a few things:
    1. The company isn’t offering a refund only a replacement.
    2. The company won’t refund them without the customer sending the product back at the customer’s expense (meaning the customer must pay to get the products sent back).
    3. The company isn’t answering emails, not even with a generic “we received your email and will get back to you as soon as possible”.
    UPDATE: June 15, 2019 7:49 PM Eastern It's come to my attention that people are now getting only PARTIAL refunds. Due to these partial refunds, some banks will not allow a dispute or chargeback to made for the remaining amount owed. These banks are telling people to contact Jaclyn Hill Cosmetics to rectify the situation. IF this happened to you and you live within the U.S. PLEASE contact your state's Attorney General's office, CA State ATG, FL ATG, and the FTC. You have the right to a FULL refund, including shipping, due to the fact these products are contaminated!
  3. File a dispute with your bank or credit card company. Disputes and chargebacks are typically known as a “payment dispute”. If you used Paypal visit their Resolution Center for more information. For our business we use Square so I’m familiar with their merchant policies so I know that the dispute codes for goods that are damaged or defective (e.g. contaminated) are as follows:

    1. “Goods/Services Damaged or Defective” (American Express)
    2. “Not as Described or Defective Merchandise” (Visa)
    3. “Cardholder Dispute – Defective / Not As Described” (Mastercard).
    Under AMEX, Visa, and MasterCard you can file a payment dispute due to having contaminated and/or damaged lipsticks.
  4. File a complaint with the California State Attorney General’s Office. Jaclyn Cosmetics/Jaclyn Hill Cosmetics is doing business out of California. Due to the nature of these products where THOUSANDS (as mentioned by Jaclyn Hill Cosmetics on their Instagram page) of customers received lipsticks that were not as advertised. Some were damaged by transit, some contaminated. Based on the fact that all 20 lipsticks share the same batch code one has to presume that ALL lipsticks are contaminated even if no signs of contamination are visible.
  5. File a complaint with the Florida State Attorney General’s Office. Due to the fact that Ms. Hill is the presumed owner and face of her company and has been posting on social media the quality of her products she is liable, regardless of her LLC, for making those statements such as the products are not contaminated (when clearly it is) or 100% safe (when she offers no proof that the contaminated lipsticks were tested by a 3rd party lab).
  6. File a complaint with your state attorney general’s office. If you live in the U.S. you also have the option to file a complaint with your state ATG.
  7. File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission. The FTC regulates consumer protection laws. Even if you’re OUTSIDE the US, the fact that the company is based in the U.S. allows you to be able to file a complaint.
  8. File a complaint with the Federal Food & Drugs Administration. Again, even if you’re not in the U.S. you can still file a complaint. The FDA WANTS people to report to them if you experience any one of these things:
  9. Screenshot from the U.S. FDA website.
    1. A reaction after using a cosmetic, such as a rash, redness, burn, hair loss, headache, infection, illness or any other unexpected reaction, whether or not it required medical treatment.
    2. A problem with a cosmetic product, such as a bad smell, color change, other sign of contamination, or foreign material in the product.
  10. File a complaint with the Better Business Bureau. Just be aware that the BBB has no legal authority to do anything or even get your money back. Businesses don’t even have to respond to them unlike businesses must respond to the state attorney general’s office or even the Feds.
If you live abroad (outside the U.S.) you can also contact the regulatory agencies in your country.

Please make sure your document the lipsticks with lots of photos in the event that the bank, credit card company wants those as well as to provide those photos to any other regulatory bodies you may want to contact.

Just remember this, the company didn’t send you the product you were expecting. The products came damaged and/or in many people’s cases visibly contaminated with foreign material embedded deep into the lipsticks. Due to the fact that ALL 20 shades have the GC05A batch code, there is absolutely NO WAY to be sure if one of the lipsticks is safe or not even if your lipstick shows no visible sign of contamination.

You shouldn’t have to pay to send the product back and you shouldn’t have to be forced to get a replacement. Based on Jaclyn’s video about the situation it’s clear that she doesn’t care if people’s products were contaminated with unknown substances that may or may not be toxic.


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