Ask BEAUTYCALYPSE #5: How To Prevent Beauty Sample Hoarding?

Isn’t it time for another round of ABC Series, Adventurers? ABC as in: *A*sk *B*eauty*C*alypse.


A reader who wished to stay anonymous asked me not that usual, much-googled and greedy “where to get free beauty samples” question, nor the weird-to-my-ears but probably understandable – in times of Something-Box galore – question “what’s the beauty samples black market”. No. She – or he – asked a smart question:

Dear Beautycalyptique, how do I prevent ending up with drawers worth of cosmetics and perfume samples? I don’t even ask for them, but then I can’t throw them away because I keep thinking someone might want them, but I can’t give them to people because it’s kinda cheap-ish. Help!”
– Yours, Anonymous Reader

So here I am, joining you tonight with a glass of a wonderful vegan and histamine-free Merlot, accompanied by the purring vocals of early Annette Louisan and my own little samples heap.

The latter you can admire in the pictures.testers-opener


There are several ways to prevent hoarding, gollum, gollum! 😛

1. Say: no, thanks.
Yes, that’s right: tell the sales people or the online shop politely but firmly that you do not wish to receive samples.
Like so: “No, thank you very much.” Smile. Don’t explain (this, my friend, only leads to discussions).
When ordering online, you could add a line to your purchase, saying something like this:

“Dear team, I noticed that you kindly add several product samples to the ordered products. Sadly, the samples end up unused, clogging up my drawers, so I have to either throw them all away or to move house, which is decidedly worse. To spare me the space, time let alone costs for moving, please be so kind not to enclose any samples for me anymore. Thank you very much!”
Example: I asked an online shop that likes to send printed gazette-like catalogues with samples to stop doing so, saying that I love their online shopping experience but do not wish to receive paper post. They wrote me back, promising to not send those anymore (and explaining that I might still receive one or two mailings because of the planning process). I thanked them, to which they answered flabbergasted with a thank-you-for-your-thank-you note 😀

2. Ask for specific samples!
Most samples are purchased by the retailers, so they (the retailers) are more than pleased to invest in a useful testing. Tell them you don’t want their usual samples, but look for something specific. For example, when I was shopping with Amazingy, I asked for samples of their Hiro mineral foundation in specific, pale colours and ended up with this loot: testers-2Note: sometimes, nicely/conveniently packaged samples are even sold – you might remember me testing Everyday Minerals in great re-sealable bags (click!) or Farfalla Perfumes (click! click!), Acorelle (click!) or Balm Balm (clickety-click!) in mini spray bottles?

3. Use the N.O.N.-technique.
What technique? Ha! N.O.N.! It’s the nifty name I gave to a simple time management rule:
NOW OR NEVER. testers-1So you have your samples. Can you use those within a few weeks? Yes? For the next flight, maybe? Keep it.
Or has a friend been dying to test this very serum, oil, lotion? Ask them right away and keep the sample for until seeing them. No in both cases? —–> Trash bin, hit aaaaand sunk!
Example: when ordering my fave Wolkenseifen deos and this infamous brokkoli seed oil, I received a whole batch of deo samples in cutesy jars as well as a mini flask of the brokkoli seed oil. I know of a friend who wanted to test those, so I kept them for her in a sturdy envelope. (Image is the article opener up above) Some people even create complete blog giveaways with 5 kilos of samples!

Dear anonymous reader, I hope this has been helpful in fighting your inner hoarder gollum! Good luck with that, and thank you very much for your resourceful question! xoxo


Geeking out about all things truly green, healthy and ethical over at (Avatar illustration by A. Goncharenko)

10 Responses

Comments are closed.