Since I got into makeup, I have been envious of our US and European counterparts. First of all, they have access to most mid- to high-end products at lower prices (did you know that a MAC lipstick only costs about P600 in the US as compared to P1000 here in the Philippines). Then, they have better customer service and online shopping options. To further the envy, most department store brands generously provide samples whether you buy anything or not; in the event that you do buy a product, use it and just don't like it, you can return it too.
However, since Sampleroom launched, the green-eyed junkie residing inside me has been somewhat appeased. In fact, I still can't get over the fact that for once, we Pinays are actually enjoying something even better than those subscription sample boxes which are such grab bags. I recall being so envious when US bloggers began talking about Birchbox and Jolie. Ironically, now that we do have sample boxes here, I just haven't been interested in getting a subscription because I'm getting my fix with Sampleroom.
If you haven't joined or heard about Sampleroom yet (WHY???) it's a genius of an idea. You simply open a free account at their website which will automatically earn you 100 points. These points can be spent by choosing from any available samples, which will be delivered straight to your door upon payment of a shipping fee. Metro Manila members are charged P100 for a maximum of 3 samples (with extra charges for the 4th sample), while provincial members have to pay P130. You can avail of samples as long as they are in stock and you have enough points for them. You will be posting a short review for your samples after using it and thus, earn back the points you have used to get them in the first place. You are also given two extra points just for adding a rating and submitting a review.
Being an online shopping veteran, I now that the courier they use (XEND) only charges P49 for Metro Manila deliveries. Which means that about half of the shipping fee I pay goes to Sampleroom. But really, for the convenience and value that they provide, I don't begrudge them that. In fact, I think it's more than fair considering all the logistics they have to go through in order to pull off something like this.
Since becoming a member when it first launched (yes, the website crashed that day!), I have gotten total of P2500++ worth of beauty products divided in three shipments. P300 paid for samples/full-sized products that I want to try based on my needs and preferences. How great is that? The five images in this post are all products that I have availed using only my initial 100 points.
You can use Paypal or credit cards to pay the shipping fee. BPI or BDO also work, if you prefer over-the-counter transactions. For more information, head on over to Sampleroom and create your account.
Happy holidays! Stay pretty.