Posted in Rants & Raves

Rants & Raves: My 2013 Birthday Giveaway


I turn 35 on the 13th of September 2013 and to commemorate this significant occasion, I’d like to be generous and do a giveaway of some Vanity Trove boxes. Sorry, I jest. I mean you WILL stand a chance to win some Vanity Trove boxes but I’m not doing it to celebrate my birthday and I don’t think turning 35 is a big deal. Also, I didn’t really do anything to be born. As my mother’s firstborn, I think it’s a day that’s more significant to her than me.

This giveaway is too generous for my shallow pockets but I’d like to turn something crappy into a fun exercise (more on that below).

Anyway, here are the rules for this giveaway:

1. You must never ever purchase a subscription from (How am I going to police this? Who am I kidding? I’m giving them free publicity, silly me!)

2. You have to be based in Singapore. (This is 1 of the reasons why I can’t utilize my credits.)

3. You have to LIKE my facebook page

4. Share a shopping horror story on the related post on this giveaway. (It can be anything related to hardsell tactics, products that never arrived, deleting important emails about your purchase, recurring payments you forgot etc)

It’s that simple! Once I’ve picked the winners, I’ll get your Singapore-based mailing address and send you a box. Or actually, my sister will because I’ll be back in Las Vegas.

The story behind this giveaway:

I wrote to Vanity Trove on 16 August 2013 when I realised I haven’t gotten my July box and was wondering if August was going to be the same – emailed, twittered and facebooked. I also was concerned becaused I wasn’t going to be around anymore and really wanted to get all the boxes I paid for before I left.

Before I got any responses (that being a weekend), Paypal deducted another $300 recurring payment – my fault for not remembering to cancel. But I got a reply on Facebook yesterday morning (19 August 2013) to inform me that their subscription model has changed and it’s no longer a curated box – also my fault for deleteing all their emails as they spam me with product launches and events so often that I stopped reading. I was told that to get my July and August (and subsequent boxes) I needed to log in to “buy” what I wanted. Anyway, I tried the personalized model and clicked randomly. I now had about $400+ in credits because of cycle ONE and the new cycle that was credited. I “bought” 5 boxes and was left with $300 which really, I wanted to have refunded as this was for the next cycle. I explained that I won’t be around in Singapore to enjoy them. Whoever answered me on Facebook told me to give them my email and a follow-up with this message – “I have informed my CS team about the refund and they will be contacting you soon”.

Instead of the nice, friendly voice on Facebook, I got a very corporate sounding email this morning that told me “We do not have a refund policy for paid membership made, therefore you have to utilize the credits before the expiry date stated on your VanityTab.”. And that was that. I don’t think I have time or energy to do more than explain to them my situation. I’ve asked for help and the ball is in their court. As you can see, it’s largely my fault, so that’s all I can do. I really can’t afford to do thi$ right now but really, I don’t think I have a case against corporate sounding emails. *koffkoff* And as friendly as they attempt to make their brand more appealing by creating a false persona to front it (i.e. Victoria Tan), they’re still a money-making entity at the end of the day (and I get it, they are entitled to whatever T&Cs and don’t have to practice goodwill in customer service if they don’t wish to). I am thoroughly frustrated but I have more urgent matters at hand so please enjoy and partake in this!

I have 5 boxes coming and another $300 more credits. A box is about $25 on average, so I guess if they won’t be refunding me the $300, there will be more boxes I’ll be giving away!

Learn from my mi$take!!! Read the fine print, be aware of what you’re buying, cancel recurring payments (you really don’t need it because it’s easier to decide after 1 cycle if you want to re-subscribe) and join my giveaway! There are at least 10 Vanity Trove boxes to win as long as you promise not to ever buy from them (try to resist it or suffer the folly of my ways).


I produced an indie music festival in Singapore for 7years before I moved to the US to be with my indie game dev husband Tom who made Axiom Verge and Axiom Verge 2. We live in Los Angeles, California with our son Alastair (named for Alastair Reynolds) and our dog Goliath (named for his size).

5 thoughts on “Rants & Raves: My 2013 Birthday Giveaway

  1. My story is I sign up for the cheap voucher citispa offer at $25 at one of their roadshow at atrium of the shopping mall . Since i sign up for it , I decided to give it a try and went for my first ever facial spa treatment . But after I finished it they will try to persuade me saying how good their package are and how bad my face condition are and I really needed the treatment . Under their pressurize persuasion I decided to sign a student package for few hundred dollar ( quite expensive) . But when the package going to end , they psyco me to sign again but this time more aggressive I kept saying no , I going home and consider again .but they kept talking to me , as I came alone I’m afraid they don’t let me go so in the end I agree with regret . But I only pay 30$ or $40 deposit . After this experience I don’t dare to go back again .while they kept calling me to book appointment with them . I liked ur page fb Id :xiaowanzi 😉

  2. Thank God I haven’t encountered any uber bad shopping horrors! My worst shopping horror is to purchase clothes that I can’t fit into. I was in Korea where I went to my very first shopping location, I immediately snapped up tees that were only $5++. There were so many cute tees and they were so cheap that I bought 6 at one go, of which in the end I could only fit into one :/ Oh I remembered my very first purchase from Asos a couple of years back, I overestimated my size and bought from the Curve range which turned out way too big for me.

  3. This happens in other country, where the nomination number for each bill is high, sometimes i need to check triple times if im holding the right note.

    i was checking a lovely ring at small standee along the street of Jakarta, and my friend is calling me up because its almost time to gather for dinner, i quickly handed the salesperson 2 purple-ish colored note which i thought was 10.000 rupiah, then receive back the balance of 2.000 rupiah, then i went. Turns out after checking my wallet at the dinner, i handed out 200.000 rupiah for a piece of plastic ring! and its too late and tiring to go back and find that store again! It is definitely the most expensive plastic ring ive bought. and im not sure if i feel cheated or i feel ashamed.

    my wise friend said to me, “Consider you paying the experience, cos it is never cheap, my friend.”

  4. Tried at qq to buy a dress,that the website is good and usually no delay in delivering.Only when i did not receive anything after 3 weeks then i tried to contact,also tried to go to the office but it was a fake address. Learnt that there are always black sheep around.

  5. I don’t really have much of a shopping horror story. Most of the times I tend to get lots of clothes I can’t fit into or got the wrong color because it was too dark in flea event (Ok those fleas don’t allow trying plus they are located in a club).

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