This is a topic that not many people really talk about but a few people know about. With my John Kuckian post, I hadn’t been directly affected by him so couldn’t give my personal experiences, but this time I’ve actually been scammed by UrbanDoll and want to speak up about my experiences.
You can bet your bottom dollar that this post will get to her and she’ll post something on Twitter about how rude I am etc but you know what? I don’t care. I’ve been scammed, my friend’s been scammed and another girl I’ve met through this debacle has been scammed.
You may have heard of the Twitter user @urbandoll and may have even entered her giveaways. She seems legit right? Posting receipts when she sends things out, retweeting when people get their goods… this was what drew me in to buying one of her “UrbanDoll Bundles” in October last year.
£14.88. It’s not a lot, right?
Not to most but for me, that was a lot at the time but for the amount of makeup you were promised, it seemed a bargain.
Perhaps, too good to be true.
So I ordered my bundle and was due to get one free, paying via PayPal because I was under the impression I had buyer protection. I only ever make purchases online via PayPal because I object to giving my card details out over the internet.
I ordered on October 23rd and received my email in early November telling me that my order had been shipped. I was pumped and ready to receive my makeup but nothing came.
Mid November arrived and I was informed (via Twitter) that my bundle had in fact NOT been shipped yet but was going to be sent out that weekend, due to arrive in late January.
Warning bells started ringing loud and clear because delivery from the US doesn’t take nearly 2 months, even with Christmas.
So I started to do some digging and boy, I hit a gold mine of information.
A handy page is this one at Pretty Ugly Liar (I have contributed) and I learnt all about her past scams but people change, right? I was willing to give her a chance.
I was wrong and as the weeks went on, I got caught up deeper in this web of lies and scams.
After a long Twitter rant, @urbandoll posted that she was refunding everyone and that we’d still get our orders. Sure enough, I got my refund email… for $0.
OK, her Tweets said the money would be in our accounts in a couple days…
So I tried contacting her and her assistants but got ignored so I took my claim to PayPal.
At this point, I was pissed.
Being bank staff and having not worked for 8 weeks, I was struggling to afford to travel to work so this £14.88 was the difference between me getting to work to earn money and having to stay home. I was in a desperate place but @urbandoll just wouldn’t help out.
What a way to run a small “business”, huh?
So yeah, I ring PayPal and after navigating their horrific automated system, I got through to an operator who delivered quite the blow to the gut.
I’d made a personal payment to her… not a goods and services payment.
They couldn’t refund my money.
As we discussed on the phone (despite the bad news, the operator was very friendly and helpful), the use of a PayPal.me link and to tell me to make a personal payment was a very deliberate attempt to make sure people COULD NOT get their money back by opening a claim against her.
Well played, UrbanDoll, well played.
I told them the PayPal email address I sent the money to and they are investigating the account but I was referred to my bank to try and get my money back.
So I rang up Lloyds Bank and they put in a direct debit indemnity claim as the money had been taken via direct debit. But because this was classed as a dispute between me and another individual, my claim was dropped and I was sent to the Lloyds dispute department, then the counter fraud department and still nothing.
It is a situation that nobody quite knows how to deal with.
God knows how many months on, I have no bundles and no refund.
I’ve rung my bank again and also reported her for the second time to PayPal and they’ve told me that they will investigate her account.
It’s not just me who has suffered.
One of my followers on Twitter (@cloudyemss) reached out to me when I Tweeted that I was writing this and told me that she’d suffered the same scam. She ordered in September and is yet to receive a refund or her large bundle.
My close friend Ella also bought some bundles and has yet to receive a refund or her bundles and when she confronted UrbanDoll on Twitter, she was blocked and UrbanDoll was rude to her for even asking for her refund.
I have to accept I’m never going to get this money back. Ever. I am no longer with Lloyds Bank because the way they handled this was appalling and I want my money somewhere more secure thank you very much. So that £14.88 is lost thanks to a scam.
The money, right now, isn’t the issue. I earn enough that £14.88 is pocket money really (compared to where I was financially at the time, this isn’t bragging) but it’s the principle. Someone took my money for a product that I never got. They stole it. And used underhand tactics to make sure I wouldn’t get my money back. Personal transactions on PayPal aren’t easier to track- that’s bullshit. It’s the only transaction that doesn’t hold buyer protection.
So stay clear of her. I don’t know if she’s still doing bundles and giveaways (I think she is) but don’t enter the giveaways or buy from her. I’m sure US people maybe get their stuff (sometimes lol) but every single UK person I’ve spoken to has never received their items and had problems claiming back money.
If you want to take the risk, go for it.
But I do not recommend trusting her. I’ve lost money thanks to her. Money I couldn’t afford to lose. My hard earned money. My friend is a young mum. She lost money too.
So UrbanDoll, if you’re reading this… Screw you. Say what you like about me on Twitter (because lord knows you will) but you never helped get my money back, you lied and its not just me. This is disgusting and a lot of people see through your lies.
You should be ashamed.