It was a bright and sunny afternoon and I skipped off to the market, following a fruitful visit to the bookshop to get my law books. I was happy, clutching the N1500 in my hand, imagining the beat face I would be able to achieve when I purchased this certain product. Though I had a negative experience in the past with this product, I was determined to make amends.
I decided not to go to my usual place, but to try a new place instead. It wasn’t entirely new – I’d visited the shop before and told the owner I’d come back one day to actually buy something. As my eyes scoured the green coloured shop, they fell upon the treasured item – the Classic Liquid Foundation.
It came in a small tube, enclosed in a black box. A few minutes and -N1500 later, I had my foundation. The future looked bright, I could already envision the nice photos I would have. I was ready to say goodbye to the dodgy ‘medium’ foundation I always bought which made me look orange especially when I applied powder on top. I was ready to watch an array of YouTube videos in order to get tips for perfecting my look. I was ready to repent from some makeup sins, ready to say goodbye to foundations that would make my face look like somewhere you could fry plantain on. I couldn’t wait to apply the foundation, which would match my skin tone perfectly.
Happily, I got on an okada (motorcycle) and went on my way home. Stumbling into the house, I felt light and positive. I sat on my bed and brought out the foundation, slathering a tiny dollop on my face. It looked great. Something in me, however, prompted me to bring out the almost-discarded packaging from the last time I bought this same product. I placed the boxes against each other, and it all went downhill from there.
The box from last time had distinct features, the most obvious being that the drawing of the foundation was blue-black in colour, with a little shine on the edges. The drawing on the box from the product I just bought was simply black. Panic and anger arose in me as I noticed other things – the different font sizes, spacing and placement.
Dazed, I quickly scratched the box to get the pin used to verify products. I awaited nervously as I sent the code to the number, only to have my heart fall to the bottom of my stomach when I got the response. It was fake. I felt betrayed. I felt like all my hopes had been dashed. And most of all, I felt like I would not get my money back.
I’m quite a timid person and I hate confrontation. I tend to shy away from conflict, though this doesn’t always work for me. I have been put in situations where I was disadvantaged but refused to speak up. I thought today would be the same, but I was wrong.
Devastated, I typed in several texts to my friend, telling her how mad I was that I lost N1500 like that. She said I should go and collect my money, and for some reason this gave me the momentum to get up and go. I was in such a hurry that I forgot my wallet, not remembering until I was half way to the market. After going back to retrieve my wallet, I landed. The confrontation could’ve gone two ways:
- I walk in all angry, throw a couple of chairs and tables around and scream like a mad person. Curse the shop and say it should burn to the ground, then demand my money.
- Walk in calmly and explain what happened.
Of course, the first one isn’t really me and so I walked in calmly, explaining to her what happened. I thought she would be doubtful, I thought she would yell and challenge me, shout at me to get out, shout at me that I had lied and swapped the packaging (considering it was her neighbour who had sold it to me in her absence).
However, she simply calmly listened to me and saw the text message I had been sent which stated the foundation was fake. She started scratching her other Classic products and sending the codes to the number, then gave me back my money in the end. It made me happy that I was able to get my money back without causing a scene.
I went to my normal shop to buy the product again, and the product was watery. It was literally like someone had poured water into a tube and slapped the name “foundation” on it. My friend walked me back to the shop and in the end; I was able to get a bottled foundation instead. It was usually N2000 but since I’d had such a bad experience I was able to get it for N1, 500. After this much trouble, I will make sure this foundation lasts a LONG time (until it reaches the expiry period, of course).
Anyway, from my experience today, I learnt a few things:
- Stay away from Classic liquid foundation that comes in the black tube, especially in that market (Not all will be like the ones I experienced, but I’m not playing myself anymore. 3 times is enough please)
- Rather than buy something because its cheap, sometimes you need to save up to get the quality product. Sometimes though the cheap one can do just fine, but when you need to save, you need to save.
- Don’t let yourself get cheated – try your best to speak up. There are some situations that will make you have to let go and let God, but there are also situations where you must speak up. Fight for yourself, you don’t deserve to be treated like crap or to be cheated. I really need to incorporate this into my daily life, because I’m so shy and so quiet.
- Stay Calm – If I’d stormed in angrily, I’d probably have embarrassed myself instead of embarrassing the shop owner. Try and dissect the situation with a clear mind, don’t let anger cloud your emotions otherwise you might regret it. I’m sure she didn’t know it was fake, because while the scratch codes are helpful to verify, you scratch the products after buying the product and this can be very problematic. If she did know, however, then I hope she learned her lesson. I thank God I had the other box of the original product with me!
- Buy safe – always look well at what you’re buying before letting go of your money. As a slightly broke person, N1500 really hurt me today so of course I was mad! This applies to everything especially second hand clothes – there are some things that can be fixed e.g. broken zip, but things like rips etc. must be checked for. I keep playing myself in this area, and I have resolved to buy safe in order to save myself from unnecessary heartache and frustration! It’s not every time you buy something from a place so close to your house that you can walk back in case any problem arises.
Now that I’ve learnt these lessons, let’s hope this foundation actually works for me and I can make a happy post about it soon!