Sunday, January 18, 2009

They win a lawsuit, we win free makeup, revisited

Hello, chickadees. I wanted to remind all of you that beginning on Tuesday, January 20, many department stores will be giving oodles of free makeup on a first-come, first-serve basis due to a lawsuit that was filed a few years ago in regards to cosmetic price-fixing. I've re-posted my article on the topic that I published a few months ago just to let you all know what's exactly going on. Don't forget!

Being married to a future litigator, I catch wind of many happenings in the legal sphere. Much of it is fascinating, a teensy bit of it is dull, and once in a while there will be truly fabulous gems that stand out. And so, I thought it be only apropos that I share some great news! Don't worry, I'm not about to lose you in a legal diatribe, but how does free makeup at Nordstroms, Macy's or Lord & Taylor sound?

As you all know, those big-name department stores and more (including Bloomingdales, Neiman Marcus, et. al.) always charge the same price for every kind of cosmetic, right? Clinique and M.A.C. products, for example, never go on sale, and usually in-store coupons never comply with the cosmetic counter. Well apparently that's called price fixing and apparently it's highly illegal! How so? The suit alleges that shoppers (meaning moi, and all of you) were cheated by the big, bad retailers (along with specific makeup brands, such as Chanel, Prescriptives, Clinique, etc.) who all made a pact (i.e. price fixed) that the stores would only sell makeup at the retail price suggested by the brands. That's why, as I mentioned a second ago, no coupons or discounts ever applied to the long-coveted YSL lip gloss you had your eye on at Nordstroms or to the Dior makeup you wanted at Macy's. Well as it so happens, price fixing is a volation of anti-trust laws! You learn something new everyday, no?

The suit started back in 2004, so it's all old news, but a verdict finally came to fruition recently: Beginning in 2009, the retailers and brands involved in the whole debacle will have to give away $175 million worth of makeup to consumers who were taken advantage of (along with paying $24 million in attorney fees).

The metaphorical gauntlet has finally been thrown down and (obviously) no more price fixing will happen at these stores or with these brands.

I know what you're all thinking: Point me to the free makeup! One caveat is that each consumer only gets $25 back in cosmetics, but that's $25 in powdered bronzer that I'm fully entitled to! Although it's not 2009 yet, start bandaging those vulnerable "I-paid-way-too-much-for-Chanel-lipstick" scars by taking proactive steps to earn back what's rightfully yours.

To be eligible for the money, you must "currently be a resident of the United States who purchased department store cosmetics in the United States between May 29, 1994 through July 16, 2003."

For a list of which stores are involved in the suit, and how you can redeem your $25, visit the official lawsuit website at http://www.cosmeticssettlement.com/ .

Guess it really does pay to be in the know, huh?

4 comments:

MoneyMateKate said...

I don't trust "while supplies last". That has always meant they have 3, and too bad for everyone else.

Can't figure out how they know you qualify, or have already claimed your one product. I mean, I have 5 of those stores within a 5-minute walk of my apartment. I wouldn't even feel all that greedy, because my sisters deserve this settlement but don't live near any department stores. Hmm...

Courtney said...

There is one place where it's a couple bucks cheaper. That is on Military installations. Lol, but unfortunately for me they don't sale Clinique on my base. Boo! I am going to take a look and see if Belk's (the only place that sales it in Valdosta, GA) is on the list. I sure hope so.

Kim said...

I heard about this awhile back and though it was fake. Too good to be true, ya know. Goos to know it isn't! And since you totally made my day I have given you the Lemonade Award. Find out what to do here: http://frugalgossip.com/wordpress/2009/01/20/omg-my-first-award/

Emilita said...

Damn I missed that. But btw, I love the Target McQueen looks above. So chic, and hopefully things I can budget into my entry-level salary. :)

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