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FYI – So Choix is Canceled – Contact Your Bank

Liz Cadman
ByLiz CadmanMay 12, 2017 | 91 comments

 

UPDATE: As of May 12th at 10 PM ET this was posted on the SoChoix site and their Facebook page:

Dear So Choix Customers,

We regret to inform you that due to the difficult economic environment we must close our doors. Despite our best efforts, our last day of business was May 11th, 2017.

We are sorry for this outcome and for any inconvenience you experience as a result of this. Please know we are working to address this with those that are affected.

If you have any questions in the meantime please contact us at [email protected]. We want to thank you for all your support and for having been a part of this journey with us.

Management Team

So Choix

[email protected]

1288 Columbus Ave. Suite 145, San Francisco, CA 94133​

So sorry to share this news. So Choix sent the email above on April 23rd. This month, they have deleted their site, their social network accounts, and all posts founder Ellie Bolus made on Medium and her profile on Crunchbase.

If you have a subscription with this company I recommend filing a chargeback with your bank.

If you've had any luck getting a response from So Choix, please let us know.

(Check the forum for discussions on this as well.)

 

Liz Cadman
Liz Cadman
Liz is the founder of My Subscription Addiction. She's been hooked on subscription boxes since 2011 thanks to Birchbox, and she now subscribes to over 100 boxes. Her favorites include POPSUGAR Must Have, FabFitFun, and any box that features natural beauty products!

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91 comments

Robyn Miles

The bank is refusing to refund the money to me because it’s been over 60 days. I spoke to a manager and it has been denied. I have lost out on $80. What can we do? I say a class-action lawsuit is in order.

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Julie

I got the same email today. She’s basically telling us to do the work of getting the refunds we are entitled to, which is fine…but if she had cared about doing this in a considerate, ethical manner it could have been done differently. Lost a lot of customers who may have followed her to her next enterprise. And next time someone sends rambling emails making you feel guilty for complaining…cancel the sub!

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Deb

I got the same response, and I’m glad. If their assets are locked up and they legally can’t give us refunds, having them put it in writing will make it easier to state my case to my bank.

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Shoppergirll

I finally got a response from them today. They are not issuing any refunds (not surprising):

We sincerely apologize for the frustration and are working hard to resolve all issues. We want to make things right where we can but unfortunately there are legal claims to our assets from specific creditors, and this process will take some time.

In the meantime it is highly recommended that you reach out to your credit card company for assistance in addressing the issue. Ask for a chargeback and they should reverse the transaction since you did not receive the goods you paid for. Sorry for this inconvenience but this will be the quickest and easiest way for you to receive your money.

We hope this information helps and thank you for having been a part of this journey with us.

So Choix

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catbert

In all honesty, though, I got more $ from my bank than I otherwise would have, because the bank just refunded me for the whole transaction (or plural transactions in my case), without deducting any months I’ve already received from So Choix.

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Jeniferlyn

I canceled my Play and Allure to save money by choosing my own samples. I live in a rural area 4 hours to the closest department store which sells YSL, Chanel etc. I subbed for a Year with SoChoix. Very pleased with my first shipments (January-March) then I received a very sloppy/very skimpy shipment early April. I wrote them and received an apology along with an inquiry as to which cream samples dried out too quickly (so they could resend them). Then the “please be aware your shipment may be delayed” email which I just skimmed. I should have canceled! I just received a letter obviously printed on a printer Running out of ink!! I’m out $64 as it is too late to dispute on my cc and feeling-yep-Scammed And Naive!

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catbert

I also received two letters from them in the mail today, one for each subscription, saying exactly the same thing they posted on their website. I wonder what on earth they were thinking, or how they thought it would go over with their customers, when instead of any mention of a refund they “thank” us for having been a part of their journey. [eyeroll]

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Jess M

I had a three-month sub, which auto-renews, but I temporarily suspended it in March (because I just had too many samples to use and my queue was bare bones). So technically my next payment would be in June. I wonder if I have anything to worry about? I hope they won’t take any future money out of our accounts? What can we do to prevent that?

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Mary K

My interest in sub boxes is already waning & scandals like this don’t help bring me back. No more annual subs for me!

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Julie B.

Same as others, I got a reply to my email saying they’d get back to me early next week, pointedly not using the work refund. I filed a credit card dispute. But while I understand why people are skeptical about their quality control, labeling, etc. I will choose to believe they were honest about what they were doing (until proven otherwise.) The samples I got, mostly eyeshadows and foundations were so specific in color and texture that it would have been near impossible for them to figure out dupes for every item.

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Ragan

I will say, the specific samples I got that I purchased again (elsewhere) in full size had the same quality, texture, color, and consistency in full size and (So Choix) sample size, so I do believe the products were authentic.

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Jay

Even if everything was authentic, I still highly doubt they had permission from these high-end luxury brands to re-package their products as tiny samples. It goes against the “brand experience” Chanel, YSL, etc have spent decades establishing.

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catbert

Same way as I chose to believe their statement about sterile conditions and tools for the product transfer. 🙂 Simply because misleading the public on that would have resulted in a legal nightmare for them (but looks like that happened anyway).

I mean, deluxe samples would have been better, but there is no beauty box subscription in existence where you can pick and choose which exact samples you want to receive, so what are you gonna do…

I wish there was one, btw, especially now with So Choix out of business.

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Julie B.

Yes, I would sign up for a pick and choose deluxe sample sub. Through So Choix mystery bags, I got great deluxe samples of creams from Dior, Chanel, Burberry, etc. And as for the monthly samples, I like to think of it like a friend had expensive makeup and scooped out a bit for me to try. Now I just wish they’d give me the rest of the Chanel eyeshadows I sampled!

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Layla

I am so disappointed! I really loved this sub!!! I would watch my fav beauty gurus then sample what they were using and see if I wanted to splurge on the product. So Choix was such a great concept. Sad to see it go and sad I had to spend an hour on the phone with my bank. 😢

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Layla

After just going through this with with Cohorted, my bank is like are you serious? Same thing, just closed down with no explanation at all or notification nothing tho. The kept accepting money too! I had a long fight and i still ended up losing out on 44$.

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Ks

At this point, I think closing subscriptions abruptly is an actual business plan. They run a bunch of promotions, close their doors, and laugh their way to the bank. And get away with it.

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sher_w

I got badly burned with my sub to the SeasonsBox fiasco … I learned my lesson and now only sub long-term with established names.

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catbert

Oh FFS! I thought I found the greatest thing ever when I first learned of So Choix, and now they do me like this?? I had three different subscriptions with them! (one for my mother and one for my sister in addition to mine)

Now I have a bunch of phone calls to make…

I really should have canceled my subscriptions the day they sent out that preposterous email.

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Scout

Update: their Facebook page just reappeared with the following message:

Dear So Choix Customers,
We regret to inform you that due to the difficult economic environment we must close our doors. Despite our best efforts, our last day of business was May 11th, 2017.
We are sorry for this outcome and for any inconvenience you experience as a result of this. Please know we are working to address this with those that are affected.
If you have any questions in the meantime please contact us at [email protected]. We want to thank you for all your support and for having been a part of this journey with us.
Management Team
So Choix

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emily

Their website is back and I was able to email customer service as well. I got a reply fairly shortly afterwards with further info to come next week. I’m not holding my breath, but hopefully I’ll get a refund for the 4 boxes I never got!

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catbert

I also got a reply from them assuring me that they received my email. How does that help me exactly? They don’t mention anything about a refund anywhere.

At least my bank already posted a refund, so I know I am covered.

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Karen

I notice they are very very careful to not promise or mention giving refunds or fulfilling orders.

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Liz Cadman

Thanks for letting us know. I’ll update this post with that info.

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Sarah

I never subscribed but I have been burned by other fly-by-night subscription boxes. I have learned never to pay for more than one month at a time and stick to the usual round up of long lasting boxes.

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RandiLu

Subscribed 3/31 to a 6 – I’m on the phone with Discover & they’re being pretty good about it (when the guy went to do research, he actually found this post!) Only problem is that they asked for the email saying it was a 6 month contract – I deleted that & since it’s been over 30 days, it was auto discarded. They still are going to investigate & give me an initial credit, but I think that email makes it easier! Lesson learned.

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catbert

It’s interesting to note, btw, that I contacted them on 5/5 because I received my shipment then and a couple of the items arrived dried out. They apologized profusely and issued me 5 credits (i.e., one free additional box). How generous with the credits when they had literally less than a week to go, huh…

I did pay with my debit card, but at least Chase refunded the money without any problems.

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Jay

I never subscribed, but I was always skeptical of this box’s legality. I just don’t see a world in which Dior, Chanel, and comparable brands were on board with their products being sold as manually re-packaged samples in unlabeled packages. I wouldn’t be surprised if the company shut down due to a cease and desist order.

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Stefanie

Exactly. I never subbed to this company for this exact reason. No idea how or where these unmarked sampled were packaged, could be the old bait n switch as one would never even know. Kinda made me shudder with the thought of smearing an unknown all over my eyelids.. nope. I do hope everyone owed $ is able to get it back tho….

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Shana

This would make a lot of sense.

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Karen

Not to mention no idea how or where it was packaged. Did they have a health permit? For all you guys know your samples could have been packaged at a filthy kitchen table by someone using their bare hands. Gross. I never understood why so many women were ok with this company. I also wondered how you guys knew you were getting what they claimed. I emailed them and asked once how do I know that I will actually get Dior and not Elf. They never answered me. I also asked to see the proof that these companies were ok with their products being repackaged and sold like this. No surprise they ignored that too. Shady all around.

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Jet

Jay and Karen I had the same thoughts, concerns. Even if they were more transparent showing how they were packaging, where they ordered from, I’d still be wary as they could easily, unethically switch product, send anything. They weren’t company direct samples in their rightful packaging so who knows. I often thought soon enough they’d get a cease and desist order or sued immediately, since high-end brands are well known for going after counterfeiters, which is essentially what you’re doing if not an authorised retailer using approved brand name packaging. I know from experience (a nasty split with my biz partner who stole merch she wasn’t authorised to sell) even small boutique brands just establishing themselves are ultra-protective, will go after unauthorised retailers. I don’t know all the laws but ever notice how samples say “not for resale”? I think they were on very shaky ground. 💄⚡️Jet

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Kelly

That was my reaction when people on reddit were suggesting this as alternative to Birchbox, once they ended the points system. I was ready to sign up until I saw that it was just someone filling vials and jars and making their own labels. One reason I love Ipsy and Birchbox is the cute packaging. The so choix samples just looked so sad.

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Ingrid

I received the first box of the $60 6 months deal and really liked it. I received the delay email on 4/23, and when there was no update by 5/2, I emailed asking for an ETA. When not received by 5/6, I sent a cancelation request. The next day I received a very polite apology for the delay in response and was promptly refunded for $45. I liked the concept, and I am sorry that they could not make it but specially sorry that they did not refund all customers prior before going MIA.

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Julie B.

I remember now that their welcome page changed recently to show they weren’t taking new members. I thought this was a good thing as it meant they could take care of current members’ orders in a more timely manner. All it really meant was they were good enough not to take money from new memberships they wouldn’t be fulfilling.

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Ragan

I canceled this a few months ago. I realized I was paying $10 a month for samples I might eventually get around to using, just so I could get $10 off my favorite Chanel powder. It didn’t really make sense, since I don’t buy the powder monthly. I just order it at full price from Macy’s now. Comes more quickly, too, and I’m not accumulating more samples.

That being said, I enjoyed it while I had it. I discovered my favorite foundation from Bobbi Brown and also the aforementioned Chanel loose powder.

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Julie B.

Oh no I paid $60 for six months and only got two. I suppose it could have been worse since I thought about getting a full year. One annoying minor thing is I had five foundations at the top of my queue so I spent a lot of time researching shades on various sites. I can’t believe they’d just vanish without a word.

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Sofie

My last email from them

I sincerely apologize for the delay in receiving your order and the delayed response to your email 🙁 We’ve been experiencing a high volume of orders, which has led to fulfillment being backed up and delayed, and unfortunately, your order has been impacted by this delay. We know that this is super inconvenient for you and it is not the experience that we want you to have with So Choix. I went ahead and instructed them to prioritize your order so that it is sent out hopefully by Friday. Also I wanted to go ahead and combine all three orders and send them out to you to avoid any further delays but I noticed two different address. Could you verify which address you would prefer? Please let me know asap so I can make sure your order gets out to you.

Best Regards,
Antoinette @ So Choix

http://www.sochoix.com

They said they will sent out my order by last Friday and I finally got my shipment email this Wednesday and got delivered today. Luckily I subscribed just last month with a free month trail. By I’m not okay that they have my cc informations… Luckily it just a temporary cc with $$ limited and usages till June.

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Deb

In trying to find out how they went from “What I don’t want is for you … to think your being scammed.” (quote from Ellie’s April 23rd email) to completely vanished, I dug around on LinkedIn. I found the following professional profiles to list themselves as being associated with So Choix:

Odile Roujol (Current: Advisor at So Choix)
Mary Anderson (Current: Member of the Board of Directors at So Choix)

Plus, there is a LinkedIn Member with hidden name who identifies as being a current Growth Marketing at So Choix.

I can’t send them an InMail since I’m not connected to them and I don’t have a paid LinkedIn membership. If anyone does, perhaps reaching out to them to see if we’ve been scammed is in order.

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Scout

Their crunchbase page has also been deleted. From a Google cached version of a crunchbase.com page, these are two other So Choix board members:

Noah Gift
Consulting CTO @ Noah Gift Consulting CTO

Mike Soby
President & CEO @ CumuLogic

https://webcache.googleusercontent.com/search?q=cache:jVCnWQzFw1IJ:https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/choix+&cd=1&hl=en&ct=clnk&gl=us

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Loretta

Apparently Lorinda “Ellie” Bolus is an Australian poker player. Damn she played those Venture Capitalists!
Other founders are working day and night putting their own money in businesses . Due to the lack of funding , no $$ for marketing, they fail . I always tried to support startups who don’t have these big VC fundings, I know they put their heart into. They might not afford fancy packaging but they do their best.

Here is our babe:
http://www.cardplayer.com/poker-players/41066-lorinda-bolus/photos/18429-lorinda-bolus-wins-appt-ladies-event

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Loretta

This woman Odile Roujol was the ex CEO of Lancome,; I assume she invested in the company and is an advisor. She should advise on business ethics first of all. I found her twitter account. You can tweet to her @Odile_Roujol

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Deb

Ooooh, thank you, and done!

@Odile_Roujol , Now that the So Choix website has vanished and emails to CS bounce, do you have any insight? #didwegetscammed

(included screen shot of the April23 email with “What I don’t want is for you to feel mad or frustrated, or to think you’re being scammed.” highlighted)

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jill

I like your stalker skills 😉

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telenerd

Thanks, but that’s nothing. If I put my husband on it, there’s a decent chance he’ll have phone numbers some in no time.

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Ks

I liked the SoChoix box that I got but recently dumped a small foil sample into one of their containers and it nearly overflowed. I don’t think paying for a foil-packet-worth is for me.

My box came within a couple weeks. I try really hard not to be a part of instant gratification movement. However, if people had to wait for weeks, perhaps it was time for them to create a waitlist? Growth is good. Not being able to keep up is not.

I am learning not to trust Ellies anymore.

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Bella01

This concerns me. I am waiting on boxes from two other companies that I paid for over 2 months ago. And it wasn’t cheap.
But companies like this hurts other companies who are legit. I won’t pre-pay anymore.

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Mandy

WHAT! Another one! 🤦‍♀️

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Beth

Things happen and companies go out of business. I understand that. But to try to disappear is inexcusable! What on earth led them to use that approach? How could it possibly help anything? And even more mind-blowing for me is how you could even face your family and friends after doing such a thing?? Terrible.

I have about 7 months left on an annual so choix sub. Between that and LLB (bank says it’s over 60 days and they can’t do anything), it’s been a bad year. Definitely going to limit my subscriptions now – 1 month for most, absolute max of 3.

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Shree

I so agree with you on disappearing all of a sudden 😞

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Kathleen

Every couple years I see a bunch fail,The rest do well afterwards(less competition) So it gives people the false impression its easy money…So a bunch start up again…And a bunch fail again.Over and Over.The more boxes there are,the harder it is to compete for items to wow us with.I think the longer you subscribe to boxes,the more cynical you get about whats a deal or not too

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Layla

I completely agree!!

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Jami

I know when I first started subscribing to boxes, I was so impressed with getting anything from Urban Decay, Tarte, etc.
Now, it seems like I am just like- meh….
I also feel like if I don’t get at least 4x my money’s worth, that I don’t feel like it’s a good deal. So I definitely agree that the longer you subscribe, the more jaded you get. Which makes me think that maybe it is time for a break. But the FOMO is just so strong,lol.

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