Monday, November 8, 2010

My first purchase with Hop Shop Go.

After trying to work my way through many unsatisfying concealers in recent months, I decided to finally bite the bullet and buy the one I really like - Physician's Formula Concealer Twins, the one that's a normal concealer on one end and green on the other. I rocked into Priceline only to find it was $21.95. COME. ON. MAN. This is a drugstore product, and I am sure that the last time I bought one about 18 months ago it was about $16. And even that annoyed me. I left empty-handed, muttering my oft-repeated rant about cosmetic prices in this country and how we get totally gouged. Recently I'd read a blog post or a Tweet from The Belle Lumiere, where she mentioned using a new parcel service called Hop Shop Go, run by the owners of Paypal (I believe). I decided to look into it, and see if it was worth just buying some cheap drugstore products from the US and give Priceline and its ilk the heave-ho once and for all. ships to "over 50 countries". New Zealand is one of them, but apparently Australia isn't. I wonder if that isn't a fault on the website though, because I looked at their site once before and they had shipping to Australia. However, all the good stuff had notes saying "This product cannot be shipped internationally" or some such. Honestly, what is the point? What
else is an Australian going to want to buy from besides cheap makeup? Anyway, I looked for the price of the Physician's Formula concealer and it was $6.95. SIX NINETY FIVE. AS OPPOSED TO TWENTY ONE NINETY FIVE. RAAAAAAGE.

I decided to go for it - to just buy a whole bunch of stuff I'd been wanting to try but didn't want to pay overinflated prices for here. Cover Girl mascaras, Revlon eyeshadows, Tom's Of Maine deodorants - in they went. It took me hours because I checked out a number of sites that sell the same kind of things - Walmart, Walgreens, Target and so on, but I came back to because they had the most of the products I particularly wanted. I chose 20 items for a total cost (with free shipping to Hop Shop Go) of about $122AUD. At least half (and probably less) than what I would have paid buying the equivalent items here.

Hop Shop Go can either ship something you buy and pay for yourself, or buy the products for you if you want something from a site that doesn't accept international payments. This was the case with, so I filled in the form for HSG to purchase everything for me. It was very time-consuming - rather than clicking a box labelled "add to cart" I had to literally type out the name of each item I wanted, and fill in relevant boxes like colour, size, number of each, etc. I also had to copy and paste the URL of every product. However, it wasn't complicated and by then I was on a mission, so I didn't mind.

I did my order on October 21, I received an email about 30 hours later to say they had placed my order for me. My order arrived at HSG October 30, and they sent me an email to tell me it had arrived. I had the option of shipping it by standard post, which was about $29AUD, or by express, which was $36AUD. I figured I might as well go the extra mile and pay for the express shipping. It arrived at my house on Friday - November 5 - but of course I was at work, so I had to get it redelivered. Probably shouldn't have bothered paying for that express delivery...

The shipping cost goes by weight, and I believe I may have had a 10% discount because it was my first order with them or something. I never pay much attention to those things (I probably should!). HSG charges a small
fee if they buy the products for you - it was only about $7, I think - so all up my 20 items cost me $173.23AUD. As usual Paypal gouged me a little on the exchange rate (95 US cents when I think it was closer to 98 US cents). However, even with that factored in, that means each of my items cost me an average of $8.66. That probably doesn't look so fantastic written down - and certainly not to Americans who would not dream of paying $38 for Revlon ColorStay foundation - but let me break it down for you with a few individual items: 

CoverGirl Eyeshadow Quad  $2.50
In Australia  $13.50

CoverGirl Lash Blast Mascara  $7.50
In Australia  $17.95

Maybelline Stylish Smokes Quad  $5.49
In Australia  $15.95

Maybelline Color Sensational Lipstick  $6.49-$7.49
In Australia  $16.95

Maybelline The Colossal Mascara  $4.99
In Australia  $19.25

Tom's Of Maine Toothpaste  $4.99
In Australia (eBay from US)  $8.53

Tom's Of Maine Deodorant  $2.75-$5.49
In Australia (eBay from US)  $8.33

So you see what we're dealing with here. In all honesty, I don't need any of these products,and I although there were a few things I was very interested in trying, I haven't really been hankering after any of them either, but they are things I've had in the back of my mind for a while. I just wasn't willing to pay the price for them here.

Overall, I was pretty happy with Hop Shop Go. It took a while for my order to arrive, but that's more than them. And it wasn't a ridiculous amount of time anyway. The shipping was pretty reasonable, and it opens up a whole new world of internet shopping. But there is a downside - it's only really worthwhile if you are buying a lot of things, or something expensive. There's no point in paying $25 or whatever the minimum shipping is for a couple of $4 mascaras - you're not really going to come out ahead. And of course, you can only pay with Paypal, which doesn't bother me as I usually do that anyway, but I know a lot of people hate Paypal. On the plus side, you could buy MAC at reasonable prices, and have
access to otherwise off limits stores like Bath and Body Works

Some of you may have noticed that there are in fact only 18 items in that photo above. That was the other downside:

I don't know whether that was caused by, Hop Shop Go or the courier. I'll give HSG the benefit of the doubt, since this kind of thing is usually caused by packages being bashed around in transit, and
frankly,'s packaging leaves a bit to be desired - this was all just chucked in a box with no attempt to cushion anything. Therefore, I'm not judging HSG for that bit. I'm disappointed though - these are two of the items I particularly wanted. The Eye Studio quad just has a broken highlight colour, which is not so bad since I probably wouldn't use that much anyway. But I REALLY wanted that Emerald Smokes palette. SAD FACE.

I don't really intend doing much shopping in the immediate future - let's face it, I just blew $170+ on cheap makeup - but when I am on the hunt to buy things again, I would definitely use Hop Shop Go. Two thumbs up. I do wish I'd ordered more than one of those concealers though...


  1. Ouch at the broken eyeshadows. That's the problem with buying eyeshadows and having them delivered to you. The chances of them shattering are high :(

  2. Yes, I never even considered that possibility because I've only ever bought eyeshadows from places that wrap them up tightly in bubble wrap. Which, you know, would be the sensible thing to do. :-/

  3. Oh no the broken eyeshadow :( I Purchased a stylish smokes quad last week and am SO impressed! Will probably post a look using it soon

  4. Interesting and infuriating to see how much we get gouged price wise, I need to save a wad of cash and go in for a bath and bodyworks order mmm hehehe, though major bummer about the squashed quad :(

  5. Oh, great shopping! I've been very tempted to use Hop Shop Go, especially with the great $$ and the stupid prices we get charged here.

  6. I think once you've signed the slip to give them to leave the packages at your door you never have to worry about it again. :)

    Nice haul!

  7. Tea, which of the Stylish Smokes did you get? There were a couple I liked the look of.

    Jade, it is infuriating indeed. I'm tempted by BBW with everyone talking about it recently, but I need to save up for a splurge on that too. Maybe after Xmas!

    GQ, I thought they were really easy to use and as you say, that dollar is just calling to us, lol.

    Jessica, did not know that. Thanks for the info. :-)

  8. oh. my. god. $21.95?! for the concealer?! that's mental! I kinda feel bad for all my bitching about what we get charged in the UK and to be honest it's no where near that bad.

    The site sounds fairly good - just a shame about all the little extra costs that seem to mount up :)

    Oh and I've heard LOADS of good things about that cover girl mascara, we cant get cover girl stuff in the UK though :(

  9. Ah well, at least the little extra costs added on still come out well cheaper than buying the same stuff here! :-)

  10. Wow - nice drugstore haul! I have some of the Revlon quads myself - did NOT pay full price for them either - good lord - the over charge on products in Oz is disgusting :(
    That's a bugger about the smashed items too...had that happen to a too faced palette - was gutted!

  11. Wow thats awesome !
    The price of drugstore brands are ridiculous in Aus and with the dollar the way it is, why not get hauling :)

  12. Melbournite, isn't it awful when you really look forward to something and it arrives broken? :-(

    Stella, I think pretty much everyone I know is hauling like crazy at the moment!

  13. This comment has been removed by the author.