You know the deal. We've all casually bellied up to the makeup counter looking to buy a brand-new lipstick, only to walk out with a brand-new lipstick, foundation, face cream, and serum.
Call it a lack of willpower, or a lack of confidence, or a combination of the two, but the tendency to overbuy at the beauty counter isn't entirely our fault. Sales tactics have a lot to do with it, too. The ugly truth is, sales representatives are usually instructed to hit certain quotas — to sell this many products, and this dollar amount, by such and such time. "It’s turned into what I call 'fast-food makeup,'" says Angela, a makeup artist (our sources preferred to remain anonymous). "How much can I sell customers in a short amount of time?"
Of course, the reps are just doing their jobs, and many of them do keep their customers' best interests in mind. But there's also a fine line that they must walk; an impressive balancing act that keeps them from teetering into pushy or aggressive territory — a major turnoff. "From what I know, companies don't actually like that," says Caroline, a former sales representative. "They don’t want to lose the trust of the customer."
These tactics make it easier for customers to feel seduced, to let down their guards, and to loosen their purse strings. So, we decided to ask a dermatologist, a makeup artist, and former sales representatives to share their tricks of the trade, and to help us recognize when we're being offered legit advice and when we're being taken for a ride.
Ahead, 13 lies you'll hear at the makeup counter (and the few noteworthy exceptions).