A recent Facebook story that linked to a news page announcing the Sephora acquisition of Ulta has been exposed as a scam thought to encourage sales of the skin care cream Vlamorous.
Consumers have been getting caught out by clicking on a Facebook news item that links to a story mocked up in the style of People magazine that suggests the intended buyout, with the headline, “Sephora Just Announced They Are Buying Out Ulta — Here’s How YOU Can Take Advantage.”
The story goes on to publish details of the supposed acquisition, while encouraging readers to attend Ulta’s closing down sales and to click on a link to purchase a sample of face cream ‘Vlamorous’, said to now be sold in Ulta. However, the article was exposed by fact-checking site Snopes to be a hoax.
It read, “Until recently, Ulta Beauty has always kept an amazing wrinkle secret called Vlamorous Cream reserved for their high paying celebrity clients. They reported that in order to clear the products off the shelves, they needed to give out free samples for everyone to try.”
However, Vlamorous skin care is known to be a scam, with the initial $4.95 cost for a sample being followed up by a hidden charge of nearly $100 just 14 days later.
Assessing the Vlamorous scam, a consumer statement on Ripoff Report stated, “They say that you can have a sample of it for free and the sample is supposed to last 30 days. Nowhere do they say anything about later charging you after a period of 14 days if you don’t return whatever is left. That charge for us was about $100. How businesses like this are allowed to exist is beyond me.”