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The Secret Of The Himalayan / Swindled by pushy sales girl

1 San Francisco, CA, United States Review updated:
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2/5/10
I had the same complaint as the other two people about this cart in the Westfield Mall in San Francisco. I walked out of a store and this girl tries to give me a little "sample" of juice. I was soon roped into a long winded schpeal about skin and Goji berry. She puts some sea salt stuff in my hand and is soon spraying it with water to see how smooth my skin could feel. I told her it was "nice" and she said "my Grandmother is nice, this is AMAZING!" She then lathers me up with lotion and tells me how this is a luxury that I only have to use once a week. I told her that I really needed to get going (as I was on my lunch). She told me that I looked so young...what do I use on my face to make sure that it isnt filled with make up and pollutants. I told her I was in love with my Murad products and I really didn't need face stuff. She is then rubbing on the peel and showing me how many impurities were being rubbed away. She tells me she can give me an amazing "weekend" special. I told her I am buying a house so I can't spend money. She gives me a song and dance about how you can buy a house whenever, but when are you going to get new skin. Then she asks me how many jackets and pairs of jeans do I have in my closet, but when do I pamper myself with good skin. This went on for 20 minutes when I finally told her I couldn't afford it and I needed to go. She went on and on and of course, 15 minutes after that I am buying the peel for $59 with the scrub free. As she is ringing me up she tells me I need to have the body butter for it really to work, throws it in the bag and says she'll give it to me for $20, and rings it up without me saying yes. I walked away with my heart racing and feeling faint. I got back to my office ashamed that I got taken and completely defeated. I am in Sales and these are the type of people that make me HATE salespeople. I am hoping that I can talk to the Westfield Mall concierge after reading other's reviews and get my money back. Iris was the "Manager's" name that hooked me up. I wish I would have just ordered my friend's gift online (which I didnt end up getting because she wasted my whole lunch). I don't even want to go back to the Westfield Mall anymore. I hope they can help... :(

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Comments

  • Tl
      30th of Apr, 2010

    Here, here! I had virtually the same experience at the Westfield Mall in Tukwila, Washington - only I was conned into spending $342! I tried to extricate myself from the salespeople (they were tag-teaming so I was just that much more intimidated) for nearly 30 minutes and they just simply wore me down. I knew that what they were telling me was CRAZY TALK, but I buckled under the pressure - I just had to get out of there. I finally said, "If I buy this from you, can I leave????" I walked away - nauseous - with a huge bag full of what I'm sure was at least mediocre skin care products . I intended on returning them, but saw that the receipt had been rubber stamped "NO RETURNS. EXCHANGES ONLY." The receipt itself, was hand-written in a foreign language (what's up with THAT?). I tried to sell the products on eBay at a drastically reduced price, but didn't get any hits, let alone any buyers. Ultimately, I took the products to work, told my friends the whole, ugly story, and GAVE THEM AWAY. The experience was so demoralizing that there was no way I could look at them, let alone USE them. I also submitted a complaint to the corporate office of the mall - no response. Live and learn.

    +1 Votes
  • Ch
      8th of Jun, 2010

    You think that's bad!

    I was on holiday (vacation for you Americans) from England with my fiancée who was doing some work. The same hand scrub crystals thing happened but the sales girl 'accidentally' touched her boob with my hands when she was rubbing in the cream/crystal/scrub stuff. I was alarmed but thought it was an accident until it happened again. While still shocked and frozen, she did it again. I was afraid she was going to shout that I was a perv or something so I said I really have to go. She insisted that I bought something and I gladly handed over cash. I told my fiancée and she thought it was hilarious... I stayed well clear of those things for the rest of my visit. I have no idea what to do with it now. Still... at least it smells pleasant and I didn't end up in a cell.

    +1 Votes
  • Ri
      14th of Jun, 2010

    It sounds like a bad company and marketing scheme . I wonder why no one complained to Westfield Management about this? And if there is why are they still continuously being able to do the same thing in Westfield Mall?Isn't there any consumer regulatory body that can protect consumer's from this kind of schemes? I wonder what kind of legal liability a company faces for being in a way associated in such wrong doing if complaints like this already exists and yet they still let them sell their products in such established mall? I'm sure this "no return no exchange" transactions are never explained to these consumers during this transactions.

    +1 Votes
  • Ri
      14th of Jun, 2010

    It sounds like a bad company and very suspicious marketing scheme. I wonder why no one complained to Westfield Management about this? And if there is why are they still continuously being able to do the same thing in Westfield Mall? Isn’t there any consumer regulatory body that can protect consumers from this kind of schemes? I wonder what kind of legal liability a company faces for being in a way associated in such wrong doing if complaints like this already exists and yet they still let them sell their products in such established mall? I'm sure this "no return no exchange" transactions are never explained to these consumers during this transactions. The workers in this kiosk wether they like it or not also has legal responsibility if this is indeed a scam. I wonder if anyone complained about them as well?

    +1 Votes
  • Sh
      24th of Jun, 2010

    I have to say, I had the same bad experience here in San Diego. It must be an across the board training they receive to be pushy and annoying to the point people will buy their product just to escape their kiosk. My experience happened around Mother's Day. I was with my oldest daughter, and they went through the same song and dance, even trying to pull my daughter into their manipulative scheme. While trying to convince me to buy their product, the guy proceeds to tell me he is the manager and will give me a discount. Then after 20 minutes of trying to escape and feeling like buying something was the only way to get free, the girl working at the kiosk tries to up-sell me and says she is the manager and will cut me a deal. I escaped with paying for one product and getting one free, but I too felt completely harassed and abused. If you see them coming your way, save yourself and run!!!

    +1 Votes
  • Fr
      1st of Oct, 2010

    Yes this same thing happened to me yesterday...
    I of course went on line and to this webpage to read reviews and get feedback concerning this obvious scheme.
    It's strange for me to think of the incongruence of some lady holding a tray of shots of goji berry juice. It was really sweet juice, i asked about where to get this juice. She replied "in a grocery store" This alerted me as to there being a strange marketing scheme going on. Perhaps the juice raises peoples blood sugar level enough to handle the full press sales techniques they're about to be subjected to.
    For this lady to give me a shot of juice. Then having her lead me to her skin care area where she gave me a hand full of grit, she instructed me to start rubbing it into my hands, this was a little strange for me. I mean I'm a guy, and i don't usually go around buying skin care products. In addition the fact that the water was a bit dirty when she rinsed off my hands made me a little bit uncomfortable, and was slightly embarrassing. I just wanted to get out of there. The grit sure made my skin feel good though...
    At this point the lady showed me some skin moisturizer, she told me i could rub it over my entire body, my arms, legs, knees, etc. You get the point, a persons mind can't help but wander. I jokingly told the lady that she should come to my place and help me apply this product to my entire body. She said she would...
    She certainly did have a large arsenal of sales techniques, i noticed that even her facial expressions were so, well, expressive. She used her entire body and mind to try to make a sale. She was good. Very good. She at first avoided telling me the price of these products. Acting like her presentation wasn't about money, or making a sale. I kept asking 'how much'?
    Next she showed me a skin exfoliating cream. She started rubbing it on my inner wrist.
    She showed me that it did actually do what it was meant to do...
    At this point she insisted that i needed this product.
    I finally was told what the price was. She started at a price of $60.00 per product.
    I told her i might come back and buy it later. She insisted i buy it right away, with the rational that this was the sale price. If i was to come back later the price would be much higher. I was sure that something wasn't right about her story. I surely wasn't going to buy anything i didn't need right away without at least doing some price comparisons online...

    She started in with some psychology concerning money. Why was i in the mall? 'Food', i responded, i was possibly going to buy some food. Next she commented about my clothes, saying i would spend money on clothes. Why not on my skin?
    She asked me how much my shoes cost. To tell you the absolute truth, i purchased my shoes at a thrift shop. So I know there's a lot of ways to get nice things without paying exorbitant sums of cash. I didn't tell the sales girl that though...
    I told her i had to get going, and she insisted i stayed. As a matter of fact it was very hard to extract myself away from this person.
    The worst part was when she started whispering in my ear. " For you, i will sell it to you for thirty dollars. This is a secret, shh. Don't tell anyone" This was absolutly ridiculous. A secret? Thirty dollars for a jar full of goo? Are you [censor]ing serious? I certainly would have kept it a secret had i purchased that stuff. She had already contradicted herself about the "$60.00 sale price" The entire experience was unreal, i couldn't believe any of it.
    I was lucky to have gotten out of that place with my wallet intact.
    I avoided that location like the plague on my way outside of the mall

    0 Votes
  • Ca
      12th of Oct, 2010

    THE SAME PEOPLE THAT ARE SELLING THE HIMALAYA PRODUCTS ARE ALSO IN CHARGE OF "ONSEN" AND "DEAD SEA PREMIER" PRODUCTS. THEY ARE A SCAM FROM ISRAEL. THEY HAVE KIOSKS ALL OVER WESTFIELD MALL INCLUDING A KIOSK THAT SELLS SUNGLASSES BY A VERY PUSHY SALESMAN. THEY ARE A SCAM. PLEASE SPREAD THE WORD ABOUT THEM. THE PRODUCTS THEY SELL ARE [censor]. THEY ARE A SCAM. STAY AWAY FROM ISRAELI SALES PEOPLE AT KIOSKS IN WESTFIELD MALL, OR ANY MALL FOR THAT MATTER. PLEASE SPREAD THE WORD AND HELP RAISE AWARENESS. BY THE WAY, THE OWNER OF WESTFIELD MALL IS ISRAELI. HE IS ALSO BEHIND THE SCAM. I KNOW FROM PEOPLE.

    -1 Votes
  • Ca
      12th of Oct, 2010

    THE WOMAN THAT TRIED TO SELL ME "ONSEN" SKIN PRODUCTS TOLD ME THAT THE POWDER TECHNOLOGY PRODUCT $400. I WENT ON THE "ONSEN" WEBSITE AND IT TURNS IT OUT THAT IT IS ONLY $129!!! I WOULDN'T EVEN BUY IT FOR ONE SINGLE DOLLAR, BECAUSE THE PRODUCTS HAS BARELY ANY INFORMATION IT, AND IT IS OBVIOUSLY A SCAM. STAY AWAY FROM KIOSKS AT WESTFIELD MALL. DON'T STOP FOR ANYONE TRYING TO SELL YOU ANYTHING. KEEP MOVING!!

    0 Votes
  • Ca
      13th of Oct, 2010

    DON'T RUIN YOUR SKIN WITH WITH UNTESTED PRODUCTS THAT HAVE CHEMICAL INGREDIENTS. DON'T BELIEVE THE CLAIMS. YOU'RE BETTER OFF SPENDING $1000 AT SEPHORA THAN ONE SINGLE DOLLAR FOR SOMETHING THAT IS TERRIBLE FOR YOUR SKIN AND IS A TOTAL AND UTTER SCAM. LET US ALL SUE THEM. WE ALL DESERVE TO GET OUR MONEY BACK AND SHUT THESE SCAMMERS DOWN.

    0 Votes
  • Ca
      13th of Oct, 2010

    http://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:hz8p0u_EN9MJ:waronyou.com/forums/index.php%3Ftopic%3D17510.0+onsen+scam+westfield&cd=10&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us

    THE LINK ABOVE WILL TELL YOU WHO EXACTLY THESE ISRAELI SCAMMERS ARE.

    -1 Votes
  • St
      10th of Nov, 2010

    While these may be o.k. quality products they are offered for a fraction of the price on Amazon.com. I was tired and had already spend all I could afford to spend and then they offered the juice and said they had a free gift for me. I was so tired and overwhelmed that I folded to their pressure. Americans are not used to this sort of sales pitch. My recommendation is "buy the products on Amazon.com" if you like them and you will be amazed how affordable these products actually can be. And in the future I will know to just walk away and ignore these sales people, realizing I can always check on line. SERIOUSLY I COULD HAVE SAVED 60% if I had been stronger and waited to check on line. Now I don't know how I will pay my other bills!

    0 Votes
  • Ta
      25th of Nov, 2010

    I have one of those faces that strangers want to talk to. On buses, trains, walking along the road, in supermarkets etc. I don't find it that terrible until I have been bombarded by these people on every single visit to the Westfield. The bloody eyeshadow girls and the salt boys. I quickly realized what they were up to and managed to avoid them but what about the days when I'm wandering aimlessly (zombie style) scanning shop windows with time on my hands. Yes, I have fallen prey to their genuinely awesome sales techniques. I thought I'd learned my lesson from the sparkly eyeshadow booth as 3 of them sit unused in my drawer back home, but no. Today I was fooled by the salt sellers. I was adamant that I was not gonna buy anything even though my hands were now soft and silky, and I was on a Christmas present mission. These people are too good at what they do and they charge through the roof. Be very aware folks. Don't even look at the booth, or the sellers...not even sideways. Walk briskly past as soon as you see them in the distance. Seriously.

    +1 Votes
  • Am
      1st of Dec, 2010

    Wow the exact same thing happened to me yesterday. I knew I got suckered into buying products that were nothing special but it was really tough to leave. You literally have to be very rude in order to avoid buying anything. She sold me the Goji peel for $59 and gave me the salt scrub for free. However, after looking on Amazon.com I see that I pretty much got it at the same price as they are being sold on the website, but it sucks that there is no return policy. I only wanted to buy it if it would help my hand eczema, but I'm not sure if it will even work or not. I thought I learned my lesson after the first time being suckered into buying a hair straightener and hair extensions at a kiosk in Stonestown shopping center, but I am such an easy target after all. I feel safer shopping online now than in shopping malls, after these experiences. Never again.

    0 Votes
  • Cb
      7th of Feb, 2011

    the other day my mother and i were sucked in to the whole spiel as well, half an hour they hounded her, but she was having none of it. we know b.s when we smell it. she just kept telling them no. over. and. over. again. don't let them intimidate you or part you from your funds. with people like that you have to stick to your guns, which is exactly what we did. 'course, for the rest of our day, i had terrible visions of the two salesladies(yes, they tag- teamed us as well), running after us throwing product our way yelling "it's an excellent product! don't you want to look young forever?!?!" well, yeah, but not for $6oo a pop. i think i'll stick with burt's bees, thank you very much.

    0 Votes
  • Ch
      19th of Feb, 2011

    I was a victim also of these pushy sales people at a kiosk in Pleasanton, CA. I ended up buying several products I could not afford totaling several hundred dollars! While I love the smell of the moisturizer and the body butter (apricot scent), and my skin felt softer, I did not even end up using the other products. I still have them but when I saw Amazon.com had them for about 1/10 the cost, I was mad at myself for allowing myself to be swindled! I avoided the mall after that incident but should have filed a complaint with the Better Business Bureau and called the local TV station to fight for me! Complaints might work here but I doubt it. Media like local TV stations reach the masses and raise awareness of frauds out there. Anyway, this was my experience. This happened about a year ago but I still remember it like it was yesterday!

    0 Votes
  • De
      2nd of Mar, 2011

    Get some backbone ladies. If you don't have time, if you don't have the money or you don't want to buy THEN DON"T. You all act like you were taken into an alley, beat and robbed. TAKE SOME PERSONAL RESPONSIBILITY. I got the hard sell as well, spent money I didn't really want to spend. It's a nice product but I CHOSE TO PURCHASE, grow up there are real people with real problems where there free will really is taken away.

    +1 Votes
  • Re
      12th of Jun, 2011

    Im sorry to all of those people that can not say no. I had a great time with the sales girl and she did not push items on me when I said no. And by the way the products are made in the USA, if fact in Houston, TX not in Isreal. But that doesn't matter and you would have to open the package to know that. The products work good if the people that are complaining would try them. My husband has a skin condition and uses the oil from the Hunza Apricot Treatment on his extreamly dry skin and it works wonders. I say stop complaining and say no if you truely do not want the products.

    0 Votes
  • We
      14th of Jul, 2011

    I work in Centre Management in a shopping centre. The Kiosks being referred to are leasing the space casually which is the practice at almost every shopping centre which is managed by a property company like Westfield. Just like any other retailer in the shopping centre the centre management have no control over the reurns policies of casual leasing clients, HOWEVER a standard rule is that casual leasing clients ARE NOT ALLOWED TO APPROACH YOU unless you have approached them and are taking an interest in their product because in the terms and conditions of the casual lease they have to ensure they maintain the customers right to 'quiet enjoyment'. They can say 'Hi' but that's about it. If one calls you over you can make a complaint to centre management, or my favorite, which ever shopping centre I am in, is to tell them I'm from centre management and they aren't allowed to call me over/harass walkers by. They will immediately eave you alone. They are also not permitted to hassle any centre/store staff. If management get three complaints in our shopping centre the client has to pack up and leave. I wish more people knew about these rules because it can be very damaging to other retailers situated near the kiosk who pay rent 12 months of the year to have people putting their head down and running past these idiots. Taking care of these clients used to be my job and was the bane of my existence, thank goodness I don't have to deal with it anymore!

    0 Votes
  • Ca
      18th of Aug, 2011

    same thing happened to me in a London, UK Westfield in Hammersmith. hate these people, and y was i such an idiot to give in?! what can we do about this scam????

    0 Votes
  • Em
      9th of Sep, 2011

    Effective salesmanship is NOT a scam. Pushy people? yes. Scammers? No. A scam would be if you spent $60 on body lotion and it turned out to be Jergens lotion that they put in their own containers. I can't believe some of the comments posted on here. Those of you insinuating that they are Israeli spies are f-ing nuts. It they WERE spies, what kind of information could they possibly get in a mall?? All they could learn about is the excessive consumption habits of the American shopper. Face it, they are good at what they do. Regardless of their race, they are normal people trying to make a living. Face it, you have buyers remorse. Try growing a pair and learn how to say no and walk away. You claim you talked with them for half an hour and bought their products because you didn't want to be rude. Sort of ironic that you're making complaints that they are scammers and tarnishing their image. Is that not rude? I have bought their products and they are decent. I wouldn't spend that much money on them again but their prices are comparable to those you would find in a high end department store. Ultimately you have a choice in the matter. Take responsibility for the choices you make.

    0 Votes
  • Fr
      5th of Feb, 2012

    I just came back from Ls Vegas and had a terrible experience at the Fashion Walk Mall.I too was harrased into buying a 78.00 bottle of Himilayan eye cream. The sales guy was pissed because that was all I bought. He wouldn't let me leave and he told me I was a very tuff customer. I'm glad I got out of there buying only one product. But he left me frazzled and anxious and very upset with myself. I should have ran, not walked away from him. I wish that these malls would send there own people out there, incognito, and let them experience the negative tactics that there customers have to endure

    0 Votes
  • To
      10th of Feb, 2012

    If the sales person calls you over as you are hurriedly walking on a mission someplace else, to give you a free sample, then grabs your arm as you reach for the kind offer, and talks a million miles an hour about how fabulous you are, free products and their last client sale of thousands of dollars, and suddenly you are cornered on a stool that they push you into, and physically block your view of the door with no way out without pushing them out of the way - that's INTIMIDATION. That's not sales. And it is RARE in the US. I've seen it, and expected it in other countries where bargaining and sales are aggressive, and it can be totally frightening if you are not mentally prepared for such tactics. I've even used defense moves in other countries to get out of a wrist lock a sales girl put on me to keep me from leaving. The physical touching and blocking of your exit is NOT good etiquette in the US malls. That's what happened to me in Los Angeles with this company. They are super friendly with words and smiles and attractiveness, but there is a huge difference between CHOICE and INTIMIDATION in sales. This company trains their reps like this. It's definitely a Westfield thing - anyone spoken to Westfield corporate? If you feel icky after buying something you didn't want or need, likely you have been intimidated in some fashion. It can be subtle, clever, or abusive and physical. Please report this company if you have had similar experiences.

    0 Votes
  • Pr
      20th of Aug, 2012

    I have very rarely fallen victim to sales intimidation, and never felt the need to write a comment about it, but I will be writing to Westfiled Stratford (London UK) about the apalling people at the Onsen Kiosk. I do not want to be shouted at, lied to, touched, intimidated, and eventually fleeced when I have come to enjoy myself and spend money in a shopping centre. Yes, you can say no, but if you a re normally a polite pleasant person shouting NO in someone's face does not come very naturally. Also, I have not spent years researching and perfecting my 'No', as they have on their sales technique. Telling me i can easily 'beat' them is like saying I should be able to out debate a career politician (you know, a good one), which no preparation. I cannot believe Westfield allow these vultures to prey on their customers. As if the £3 Pretzels aren't insult enough. I feel sick to my stomach that I spent £30 on an exfoliator. It seems alright, but frankly, it could be a hotel freebie as far as I know. However I urge EVERYONE, to dump the guilt. You are a good person, THEY are the guilty ones! Be proud you are not like them and don;t intimidate people with smailes for a living. Just put the stuff in the bin and move on. Life is way too short.
    I will however, write to Westfield's management I encourage EVERYONE on this board to do the same. Tell them you do not want to go into Westfield again, and consider writing to the shops located near the kiosk to tell them you avoid that area of the shopping centre because of the Onsen vultures. Wait vultures is a little too passive, Hyenas is more accurate. If the shops who pay vastly more rent than the kiosks can pressure Westfield to think again maybe we will get somehwere..

    0 Votes
  • Vi
      12th of Dec, 2012

    Omg... My heart sinks as I keep reading... I'm travelling from overseas to London for a week and I got suckered into the onsen kiosk and ended up spending 360 pounds on products that I didn't need. What do I do to get a refund?

    0 Votes

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