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I first came across Fragrance Direct when I was working for lastminute.com, they visited our office for the day and set up a stall promoting their service. Fragrance direct are a company dedicated to keeping fragrance costs low, therefore offering exceptional value for money and I really feel that they do offer this.
A bit about Fragrance Direct
Fragrance direct launched in 1993 with direct sales visiting large companies and workplaces to try and increase their customer data base, this was extremely successful as they went on to launch their first website in 1999 which led them to massive growth and have since been able to expand on their product ranges to include make-up and skincare products.
A bit about some of the brands
Chloe Cacherel Ralph Lauren Clinique Clarins Christian Dior Anna Sui David off Coty Calvin Klein Diesel Dolce and Gabbana Yves saint Lauren Benefit DKNY
Are just some of the brands featured.The difference with Fragrance Direct is that they offer the majority of their products as testers.
What are testers?
These are the products sent to stores to market each individual manufacturer's fragrance. They tend to come in a plain box and will have "tester" or "demonstrator" somewhere on the bottle, maybe not so ideal if you are looking for a gift for someone but for me this is perfect as it enables me to get a larger product for often less than the retail price of the smaller bottles. Sometimes they can come without a lid or box but this is clearly noted on the website next to the product and I always tend to double check when I see the same item listed 3 times as the majority of the time one will be fully boxed as you would receive from the shop and another will be a tester and then possibly a tester without a box. (Hope this is making sense) In short, the cheaper the product is the more likely that it is a tester or incomplete but the product still comes unused and 100% of the contents.
Do they offer any other products?
Yes, the offer boxed gift sets and also the product as you would buy from the shop and on numerous occasions I have compared them to Boots and they have always come out cheaper. They stock skincare products which include the Clarins and Clinique range, Calvin Klein Make-up products along with the Benefit products which are quite costly to purchase from High Street retailers. They also stock miniatures which are ideal if you are unsure on a certain scent and they offer great value for money and are also great ideas as an extra to someone's birthday/Christmas present. As well as selling aftershaves and eau de toilette they do stock accompanying soaps, deodorants, shower gel and bath foams so you may find a little addition that you might not necessarily come across in the high street stores.
How can I order?
You can order on the website.
By telephone 01625 432565 9am-5pm Mon-Fri By Fax 01625 435311 By email firstname.lastname@example.org In writing Fragrance Direct, Southern Unit, Artillery House, Gunco Lane, Macclesfield, Cheshire, SK11 7JL
I usually place my order on the website as I have registered on there so that I receive updates on new products and special offers that are currently running, this I find quite handy as they offer so many products I can never find the time to sit there and look out for a special offer on one particular product. The website is designed to be easy to use and believe me it is the home page has items that jump out and bite you cos they are so clearly labelled in order to take you to the section that you need.
There is a search bar that appears on every page of the website to enable you to search for a particular fragrance.
There is a special offers section that will take you to all the discounted fragrances at that time and there is also another section that offers the deals of the month and on the front page the deal of the day is reguarly updated on this particular day the offer was for Calvin Klein Obsession for men 125ml Eau De Toilette for £19.99 a saving there of £20.01!!!!
The website is in one of my favourite colours purple and the fragrance direct logo is always green. There is a gift wrapping service available and you have the chance to be put on the "Willing to Wait" list which will email you when a particular product you have requested has come into stock and you have absolutely no commitment to buy.
Most recently I have seen the Barefoot Doctor added to the site offering great value gift sets which would be ideal for christmas gifts.
There is a very simple key in place to identify the products that you are purchasing which is a small handbag with a letter inside which is colour coded:-
If the product has no lid then it will be coded a dusky pink If the product has a damaged box it is coded in green If the product has no box then it is coded in blue If the product is a tester then it is coded in bright pink If the product is a gift set then this is coded in purple
If you find this hard to remember then just hover your mouse next to the item and it will tell you what the product is as above without you having to decode yourself!!!
Today I decided to do my Christmas shopping a little early and went on to buy a gift set for my boyfriend which I had been carefully sussing out for a good few weeks and had a look on the boots website, the perfume store in the high street and also on the bargain basement known as ebay and none had been as low priced as on the fragrance direct website, I had made a saving of £10.01 by purchasing on the website and I decided that I would then treat myself to a 50ml tester of Kenzo flower for £19.99, still a lot cheaper than the high street and I am in desperate need of some new fragrances.
I added the products to my basket in order for to continue with my bargain shopping and when there was nothing else that I immediately needed (as I am saving my pennies) I decided to proceed to checkout.
This is where you will be asked for your login details if you are a returning user, this consists of a username and a password or if you are a new visitor you will be asked to register, you can opt in and out of the email subscription at any time so this is really good. Once I had logged in I was taken straight back to the checkout page and there my address was kept on file and was asked to confirm that the details were still correct and then I proceeded onto the form of payment they accept the following:-
Maestro Mastercard Visa Visa Electron
Goods sent within the UK incur a £1.00 charge per item and are sent as standard Royal Mail Delivery this means that on average they will take 5-7 working days to be delivered to your desired address.
I purchsed a giftset and a bottle of Kenzo Flower and the postage and packaging was only £2.00 standard royal mail, this is cheaper than ebay or shopping at a store directly!!
Alternatively you can opt for the next day delivery service which is £3.00 additional per order and the £1.00 charge per item is also applicable and will be delivered by courier between 9am and 8pm the following day provided your order is received by 2pm Monday-Thursday as this service cannot be guaranteed on weekends as with most postal services.
Delivery within europe takes up to 10 working days and 14 working days for any other destination outside Europe.
A full list of postage costs can be found on their website or alternatively contact Fragrance Direct and I am sure they could advise you of actual postage costs.
Finally a bit of security information....... As always never provide your credit/debit card/bank details on a website unless it has the padlock symbol on the bottom or first checking that it belongs to a registered organisation. Fragrance Direct is a member of safebuy and Government Trust UK initiative. Safebuy ensures that web retaillers follow set regulations. The Scheme, amongst other things, requires web retailers to:
Adhere to the terms of the Sale of Goods Act, the EU Distance Selling Regulations and the EU Directive on Privacy and Electronic Communications;
Conform to the Data Protection Act 1998;
Provide security for the processing of credit card transactions; Include physical location and contact details for themselves on their website;
Display the total price consumers must pay for goods including delivery costs and provide a clear explanation of the delivery procedures;
Advise the consumer if 'cookies' are required for the processing of data;
Not use 'spam' for marketing purposes;
So as you can see this is a good little site and a right bargain basement if fragrance is your thing!
I recently suffered a set back on the internet whereby I was unable to retain items in my shopping bag and pay later as they kept disappearing, so I emailed the sales team to explain the problem and to place my order manually, the order was taken and I was asked to contact them in order to confirm my payment details, this just goes to show that they do put their money where their mouth is and commit to customer satisfaction, this is and always will remain in my favourites and is always my first port of call when looking to get a gift or treat myself as you can stumble across so many bargains.