Monday, August 11, 2014

The time I blew my car note on discontinued lipstick

Toilet paper. Water. Cereal. Office supplies.

Buying in bulk can be a wonderful thing.

But the most coveted (and unusual) item I’ve purchased in bulk is none of the above, yet I’d bet the farm that, you, too, would have done the exact same thing I did – if you had been given the chance.

We've all been there: Faithful to a particular cosmetic item; loyal as can be. We've grown to depend on it day in and day out, and it has come through for us – pun intended – with flying colors.

Then, one day...Poof!

In comes word that said item has been discontinued. Without nary a warning. To say that the disheartening news is crushing is a complete and total understatement: You are beyond hurt and even wonder – secretly – if this shrewd, illogical business move is somehow personal. How could they: Don’t they know how hard it is to find lip color that you can wear during a night out and to the store to pick up a loaf of bread?

This happened to me…

One fine day in 2004, I ran to the MAC store in my local mall to pick up a tube of my favorite lipstick called Bronx. Bronx is – I mean, was – a taupey matte that went with everything. As the clerk plucked what appeared to be one of the last available tubes, she says to me lackadaisically, “You know, this has been discontinued…”

I heard nothing else after discontinued.

I bought out her remaining stock and then took a seat on a nearby bench to wallow in my sorrow and collect myself for fear that the disturbing news had rendered me unfit to get behind the wheel and drive home.

My next move?

I called the MAC hotline. Apparently they had some program where customers could request to purchase discontinued items from their headquarters – but only for a limited time and only on a first come, first serve basis. The sum total I spent on this lipstick is now murky, as this was ten years ago. I was single back then and had recently purchased my first home. (Read: I didn’t have a lot of play money left at the end of the month.) When the clerk rendered my total, I remember thinking, Damn, this is more than my car note.

I paid it anyway.

Three weeks later, a box containing approximately 18 tubes of MAC Bronx lipstick arrived on my doorstep, and I’ve since guarded and cared for these gems as if they were Faberge eggs.

And I’ve still got several tubes left.

Honest to God, I store them in the temperature-controlled fruit cellar in our basement. And lest anyone reading this gets any fancy ideas, I'll have you know that the area is booby trapped.

What’s the most unusual item you’ve ever purchased in bulk?

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23 comments:

  1. If that's the color of the lipstick in the picture I am so jealous! I love brown colors and I prefer them in my makeup but for some reason I have a hard time finding the right shade of brown lipstick here.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good Morning, Ana Lynn! Yes, that is indeed "Bronx" in the photo. And it looks even better in person. (I chose a file photo because I didn't want to try to take my own photo of one of my tubes and then botch it up. :-/

      This color, Ana Lynn, is my everything. I am lost without it.

      It's one of those "anybody" shades, meaning, virtually anyone can wear it -- and it'll look good on them. I bet you'd have success with it. You may be able to catch a tube or two for sale on eBay, but I'm afraid the price would probably be high. :-(

      Thank you so very much for commenting!

      xo

      Delete
  2. I too, hoarded an avon lipstick that was going to be discontinued about 10 years ago. Courtney, it was the only thing I had ever purchased from avon! I know it was some kind of personal vendetta against me! I don't remember the name as I wasn't lucky enough to score as many tubes as you. I ran out years ago so of course I am still always looking for that perfect shade. You may want to look into store your coveted lipsticks in a fire/water proof box! A girl can never be to safe, ya know!!

    xxo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. "I know it was some kind of personal vendetta against me!"

      THIS. I feel the same way. These are cruel and planned shenanigans on behalf of cosmetics cosmetics companies, I tell you...

      And a fire/water proof box. YES. You're right: One can NEVER be too sure. ;-)

      xo

      Delete
  3. Oh dear, yes, I just ran into this with my eye shadow pallet... discontinued last summer by Clinique. *sigh* It was the perfect range of colors, and I bought the last one there. And alas, I didn't have the funds at the time to stock up.

    I'm not sure if I have a funny thing that I've stocked up on, but my husband's weakness is school notebooks when they're $.10 or $15 cents. He buys stacks of them. Well... used to. I curtailed the behavior after I pointed out that he doesn't USE the darn things at all anymore!!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, Dakota. I'm finding that so many of us women can relate to this post, unfortunately. My condolences about your eye shadow. Have you tried calling Clinique? If you come up empty there, you might want to try eBay?

      Okay, I'm totally understanding your hub's penchant for paper. Being a writer, I do the same thing -- with journals AND notebooks. It's like I'm hoarding them in anticipation of some sort of paper Armageddon. The result? I have a gazillion notebooks all over this house...and all of them are empty, save for the first page that has scribble on them.

      Great comment!

      xo

      Delete
  4. Oh, same! Same! That happened when my favorite lipstick was discontinued. I think it was called "Coffeebean" by maybelline? Maybe? I bought like... 20 of them. I still have them and I long since have learned I don't look good in the color.
    You, however, are surely rocking your Bronx lips.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Tamara! Hmmmmm. "Coffee Bean" sounds awfully familiar. I think my mom wore it...

      Oh, yes. I'm still rocking the Bronx -- and will until I did (or run out of my supply. Lol)

      The problem, though, is that I am too dependent on it. It has become the standard -- or compass -- by which all others are judged. I should rename the color "The North Star."

      Thank you for commenting!

      xo

      Delete
    2. Argh! I meant "die" not did. I cannot type on this phone worth a darn :-(

      Delete
  5. I'd probably pay any amount of money for MAC Spike eyebrow pencil. I can't live without it and I hope it never gets discontinued (knock on wood).

    ReplyDelete
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    1. If you think you can't live without that color, Louida, I have two words for you: Stock up.

      No. Actually, three: Stock up now.

      Better safe than sorry.

      Trust me. I know.

      xo

      Delete
  6. Kroger recently had my favorite soap (Kiss My Face Olive Oil) on closeout. So I bought the last three bars. Luckily, it is still available but I just have to go to the Vitamin Shoppe or Whole Foods.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Go further, Sonya. Go further: Are their any other Kroger stores near you? (I know here in these parts, they are clustered all over the place.) If I were you, I'd make a mad dash to the others and clean those out, too!

      Go for the gusto! lol Good luck!

      xo

      Delete
  7. Wow... that's some serious commitment to lipstick LOL. I honestly don't stockpile anything. When something's discontinued, I just go with the flow and embark on the challenge to find the next best thing!

    Thanks for sharing.
    xoxo

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. (Sigh). I wish I could be more like you, Jennifer: To the contrary, I'm the one in the corner who's curled up in the fetal crying her eyes out.

      Seriously, I'm a self-help book topic.

      But on the bright side, admitting the problem is the first step toward fixing it...

      Thank you for commenting. <3

      xo

      Delete
  8. Can't say that I've hoarded any products. I'm glad that you love the product!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Oh, April. You don't know what you're missing! If you lived in these parts, I'd invite you on a tour of the cellar with the devious intention of making you change your mind. ;-)

      Thank you for visiting.

      xo

      Delete
  9. Hi Courtney - hilarious post - thanks for the laughs this morning! My crazy bulk purchase wasn't for me but dear Hubby. A few months ago, they were threatening to shut down the Sriracha plant in California that makes his favorite hot sauce. I left the commissary that weekend with a grocery cart full of hot sauce. They never shut down the plant, and we are good on hot sauce until 2037. Yep. Hugs, Holly

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hey, Holly! Okay. I was reading the health section of my college alumni magazine and there was a piece about how putting hot sauce on everything actually speeds up your metabolism. I don't dislike hot sauce -- I can take or leave it -- but after reading that I started putting hot sauce on my scrambled eggs.

      That lasted for a few days. lol

      The hot sauce ended up going bad before I could finish the bottle, and I just realized that I need to buy a new bottle, you know, because hot sauce is always good to have on hand.

      But after reading your comment, I'll just swing by your place and pick up a few! lol (In exchange, I'll have Scott whip up some of his treats so that I don't come empty-handed.)

      Thanks for leaving such a unique comment!<3

      xo

      Delete
  10. I often stocked up on make-up when I was younger. I liked liquid waterproof eye-liner and it was hard to find. Plus, I stocked up on "The Sponge." Yes I'm that old. lol

    ReplyDelete
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    1. LOL Dear, Lexa, how many times do I have to tell you: You are not getting older! You are getting BETTER, my friend. And the items of yore that you cherish are not a reflection of your age, but of your excellent taste, and your ability to recognize quality. ;-)

      Thank you so very much for commenting.

      xo

      Delete
  11. I'm glad I'm not alone...this happened to me when BCBG discontinued my favorite aqua fragrance. I bought them all u...3 bottles left!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh, Kristen. You were lucky to nab those, indeed! Covet those bottles: Make sure you are storing them in a cool, dark place. Daylight is like kryptonite to perfume and can eat away at a fragrance, making it less potent. See? I did learn something from my hours toiling away on my feet as a Lancome cosmetics girl way back when! lol

      Thank you for commenting. :-)

      Delete

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