It is an old practice apparently but I thought I looked for Terms & Conditions when I furnished my debit card number to pay the shipping for a trial jar of the cream. There was NO agreement that I saw that committed me to notifying the company in a limited period of time, the lack of which would trigger automatically the shipment of a product that cost $74.98, sight unseen. I would never have agreed to such terms. The company knows that almost no one would, so it either lies outright about the Terms & Conditons or it hides them very cleverly with prior intent to deceive.
It should be illegal to do what Stages of Beauty (SOB) does (perhaps routinely). The only proper role of government constitutionally in our economic affairs is to keep markets free from force and fraud. This is a good example of a misleading offer so the company can get credit card numbers and debit card numbers which it then uses in a very unethcial way with the full knowledge that any honest company will contact any customer BEFORE ever shipping an item. Nothing should ever be shipped without a specific order, explicitly providing name, order number, price & date. I never once saw a price for the actual product.
Anyone who justifies this practice, berating the customer for not noticing the details of some obscure Terms & Conditions, is working for the company and has the integrity of a flea--with apologies to all fleas. A legal contract requires a meeting of two sides (two minds) and that requires a specific order with all the pertinent information up-to-date and fully compliant with ethical business considerations.
I returned the product unopened immediately -- RETURN TO SENDER; RECIPIENT REFUSED ITEM-- and sent a certified letter (tracking) to Customer Service at 105 Commerce Drive in Aston. PA 19014 since I cannot find the names of any human beings who take responsibility for this company's practices. I also attempted to find the Aston, PA location at the Better Business Bureau website but could not, so I used the only address that the BBB had and that was 24 School Street, Suite 301; Boston, MA 02108 to file a complaint with the Better Business Bureau. I urged the BBB to give this company an F.
If I don't get a refund, then I will proceed with legal action in small claims court. If anyone has any experience suing one of these companies for fraud and unethical and deceptive business practices, I would welcome any advice and recommendations. The cream itself was nice enough and absorbed quickly but it did nothing that far cheaper creams don't do just as well. It is a basic moisturizer.
A company worth patronizing will never depend on such unethical practices.