Although the industry has made great strides in the past few years, natural hair products that you can find on the ground are still few and between. Many of us opt to order our favorite products online and take no issue with sometimes waiting weeks to receive them. Some of these indie vendors have wonderful customer service — going above and beyond for their consumers to solidify their place in the natural hair community for at least the next few years. Others…not so much. I asked my curlfriends on my QFTPC Facebook page about their best and worst vendors for customer service. Here are some of the best and worst, in no particular order:
1. Bobeam Natural Products:
I’ve personally never ordered from this brand, but Laquita’s shampoo bars have a cult following across the natural hair community. The intricate ingredients keep customers coming back for more and the customer service makes them want to stay. Although Bobeam is a smaller brand, shipping times are stellar and the bars even come packaged in a nice little plastic case to keep them from getting wet in the shower. A personalized, handwritten note with each order adds a touch of charm.
2. Oyin Handmade
We’ve seen Oyin grow from a small space in Baltimore to the shelves of Target and Whole Foods. The products are natural and versatile, the shipping times are accurately reflected on the site and they are generous with coupon codes. I personally cannot recall having an issue with any of my orders over the years and I’ve placed several. They’ve even improved on shipping prices and processing times!
3. Curl Junkie
Curl Junkie may not be free from mishaps, but it’s their transparency and quick to resolve attitude make them one of the best when it comes to customer service. When issues with a new product arose, customers were alerted in a timely fashion and replacements were issued as necessary. If you have a question about any of the products, shoot an email over to customer service — the owner, Marsha Coulton, often answers emails with product suggestions based on your hair texture and needs.
I’ve personally never had an issue with Soultanicals, but I haven’t used their products in years and perhaps with good reason. Several curlfriends reported a vicious cycle of delayed shipping times, out of stock items and store closings to catch up on orders. They somewhat allude to this on the shipping policy site though, stating that they have an average two week lead time and during sales you may experience delays. I might be able to handle the long shipping times, but the inquiries on their Facebook about not receiving orders gives me pause (and you all know I’m quick to file a claim).
From products supposedly having mold to issues with customer service resolutions to claims of non-receipt of items, it’s unclear what this company is doing right. Again, I haven’t purchased from this company myself, but there are several horror stories about other’s encounters documented on the web. I’m going to leave this one alone too, ’cause…drama.
**Afroveda and Ashthepainter were initially on this list for worst customer service, but their online presences seem to be on hiatus.**
But hey, you may want to take this list with a grain of salt — customer service stories have a lot of variation and who knows? Another person’s vendor nightmare may be your dream customer service experience. It ultimately depends on how badly you want the product.
What are some of your best and worst customer service experiences?