3 Women Told Us How They Successfully Navigated LuLaRoe’s Returns Program
When Karen Schmauss first starting buying clothing from LuLaRoe retailers, it was like an adrenaline rush.
She was a hunter, and her prey of choice were leggings and dresses and skirts with wild patterns she saw during live online sales. It was possible for dozens and sometimes hundreds of other people watch live sales broadcasts showing the newest patterns, but only the first person to type “SOLD” could purchase items.
“It was fun at first,” Schmauss said. “Thrill of the hunt, looking for pretty patterns, being first to type ‘sold.’ Now, not so much.”
That’s because after spending thousands of dollars, she had a pile of clothing she couldn’t wear.
She ended up with six pairs of defective leggings. Some ripped or developed small holes. Others were several inches smaller than others, even though the tags all said the same size.
And that wasn’t all.
Two of Schmauss’ T-shirts were fading and pilling — developing tiny balls of fluff on the surface of the fabric — and unfinished seams on a cardigan, a kimono and a skirt were all unravelling.
Schmauss was one of the customers who participated in LuLaRoe’s “Make Good” program, a return policy put in place shortly after a class-action lawsuit was filed on behalf of customers who were dissatisfied with the quality of the clothing and the inconsistent return policy.
She has received a check for $212 and is expecting another check for more soon.
How LuLaRoe is “Making Good”
Schmauss was not the only person having problems with the clothing sold by the multilevel marketing company.
That’s why the Make Good program was created in the first place.
The program promised that customers would be able to get their money back if poor craftsmanship — not normal wear — was behind their wardrobe malfunctions.
At first, it sounded great to us — that was, until we saw the details.
LuLaRoe wanted receipts or bank statement screenshots — some more than a year old — to prove your purchase. It wanted customers to track down the original retailer who sold them the items or find a new retailer if the original had since quit the business. It even asked customers to send back old clothing so employees could inspect it for damage and determine if the problem was truly poor manufacturing. (How would they determine this? We have no idea.)
And even still, that didn’t guarantee that the company would approve the return and grant a refund.
The full process was so cumbersome that one of our Penny Hoarding employees said she didn’t even want to try to make a return. The possibility of getting $25 back just wasn’t worth the trouble.
Making the “Make Good” Process as Painless as Possible
We don’t want you to be like our coworker. We want you to get rid of crap clothing and get the cash you deserve.
That’s why we reached out to Schmauss and two other women who successfully completed the process and got their money back. We want you to know exactly what the process was like and what corners you can cut to make it as easy as possible to get your money.
You’ve only got six weeks left to file. So here we go.
1. Don’t Go Through Your Retailer If You Don’t Want To
The directions on the Make Good page on LuLaRoe’s website really want you to go through your original retailer. If that person has shut down their store or can’t be reached, LuLaRoe would really love it if you would let them find a new retailer to help you.
This was the part of the process that gave us the most pause, so we’re happy to say that you can totally ignore that and just file your return directly through the company.
Schmauss and the two other women we spoke with — Jessi Mae Benkelman, who got back $298 so far, and Shelby Lee Terebesi, who received $147 — all skipped the retailers and filed directly with the company.
If your retailer is your bestie, I guess you can go through them if you want. But you definitely don’t have to.
2. Don’t Send Your Items Back Until You Get Your Money
Benkelman chose this option.
She returned one dress with a zipper that was falling apart before she could take the tags off. A skirt she bought made it only from her bedroom to her living room before her floor was covered in sequins. Other items were full of threads that were pulling and bunching, and of course, she too was a victim of leggings that were ripping and developing tiny holes on the first wear.
She said she printed her shipping labels and sent back her clothing only after she got her checks in the mail to make sure she actually got paid before sending anything back.
She sent back most of her items, but the company still owes her a $50 check for two pairs of leggings. She’ll send them off once the check arrives.
3. Filed For a Return But Haven’t Heard Back? Try Complaining on Twitter
This is what Terebesi did after filing for a return on May 9 and hearing nothing back for almost two weeks although other people had already gotten checks.
She tweeted the company to ask how long it would take to get her money back. LuLaRoe responded within a couple of days, and, after a bit of back and forth, the company approved her claim. Her check arrived on June 5.
If you’ve filed a claim and haven’t heard back, try prodding them on Twitter. No one likes bad publicity.
4. Grab a Glass of Wine and Settle In — This Could Take a While
The time it will take to file your return really just depends on the kind of person you were before now.
For Benkelman, who says she is generally pretty organized, it only took a few minutes because she already had all the receipts she needed in a LuLaRoe folder in her email inbox.
If you’re less organized (like me) it could take hours to dig up all the information you need. If that’s you, grab a glass of wine and think about all the extra cash you could get back with just an hour or two of searching and picture-taking.
Hopefully those tips cut down on the annoyance of the return process and help you get some cash in your pockets soon. Remember, you have to file your claim by July 31 to qualify for the Make Good program.
Desiree Stennett (@desi_stennett) is a staff writer at The Penny Hoarder. For the disorganized among us, Desiree would suggest heading to Trader Joe’s and picking up a bottle of Malbec. You’ll be able to afford it with your LuLaWoe cash.