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The Counter Culture: The Other Side Of The Experience – Assistants Tell All Part #2

By Beaut.ie | January 16 2012 | 37 Comments

Sex and the City girls

Last week we had part one of beauty and fashion sales assistants telling all about the horrific things customers do. Have a read if you haven’t seen it already – Thai brides, dirty protests and pervy perfume purchasers abound. This week, we’ve got the frustrations of a beauty counter gal to be humbled by.

“I’ve been working in a prestigious cosmetics hall for eight  years and I think I’ve seen it all. I do love my job really. 99% of my clients are lovely. It’s the few people who make you feel like a servant – that’s the worst feeling!

“One of the worst was when a customer threw a lipstick at my face because we were out of stock. It was Christmas week and somehow the tester was left out. Customer picked it up and waited to be served. I went up to her and she had the tester and asked for it. I said ‘sorry we’re out of it’. She threw the lipstick at my face and said she couldn’t believe she’d been waiting 10 f**king minutes and we don’t have it! She didn’t even give me a chance to say we had one almost exactly like it in stock!

“Another lady came up to the counter one day looking really ill. She asked would I do her make up. I said of course. She sat down and began to tell me that she just had swine flu and felt like crap and couldn’t sit in the house any longer and wanted to feel better … now I felt sorry for her but come on! Then she sneezed on me … And that’s actually a common occurance! Lots of my colleagues complain of clients coming in with cold and flus. I’ve been sneezed on more than once -  we are people too! We pick up colds too!

“Another thing that we see a lot is clients coming in to get their make up done for an event. I always ask if they are wearing make up as I’ll have to cleanse it off. The response … ‘only what’s left over from last night.’ Yup!

“I’ve had clients eat the head off me because something’s been discontinued. I know it sucks but it’s not our fault.

“But one of the worst things clients do is the following, and again really common occurance. I come accross it about twice a day: Client sitting on the chair getting make up done … phone rings in their bag … cue major search in the bag to get phone and then continue to have a conversation while I’m standing there waiting like an eejit. I have been in the middle of doing eyeliner and next thing the head is down looking for phone, without a sorry or warning. I feel this is one of the rudest things a person can do. I rarely get a person who won’t answer the phone when it rings during make over.

“The worst story comes from a hairdresser friend who said a client answered her phone while her hair was getting washed over the basin! Just got up mid wash went to her bag and got her phone … then complained her back was all wet!”

If you’re a beauty or fashion sales assistant and would like to let us know about some funny/awful/jaw-dropping experiences you’ve had, we’d love to hear them! We know from talking to sales assistants and makeup artists over the years that there are many more clangers out there we’d love to tell. It’s totally anonymous of course, and you can email your stories to info@beaut.ie. Cheers!

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