Free makeup while it lasts

January 20, 2009 4:35:23 PM PST
In case you haven't heard, you can get free makeup starting Tuesday from several big name retailers. The giveaway is the result of a class action lawsuit. Around $175 million in products are being handed out for free. The giveaways last as long as the supplies do and judging from what we saw at several stores today, the products will be gone soon, so don't wait.

Mention free makeup and as we saw, you'll get a line outside the Dillard's at Memorial City Mall. It was one of several around the city. It is not just Dillard's giving away free beauty supplies in our area, so is Macy's, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom and even Saks Fifth Avenue.

"I think it is a good idea, it makes people happy and the economy is poor," said consumer Angela Nguyen.

The free giveaway is the result of a class action lawsuit that alleges businesses conspired to keep the price of high-end cosmetics artificially inflated. To get some makeup for free, all you have to do is sign a form that says you bought make up at the store and then pick a product.

According to the terms of the lawsuit, anyone who bought makeup from one of the participating stores from 1994 through 2003 is eligible to get the products. The settlement allows consumers to get one free product from one of the stores, but many of the women we spoke with are going to multiple stores to get one free product from each.

"We all got what we wanted and we will hit Neiman Marcus and all the other stores," said consumer Clemi Villarreal.

The stores admit no wrong doing by agreeing to the $175 million product giveaway. While it may seem the stores are taking an economic hit by handing out makeup, many of the women getting their free supplies were leaving the stores with a bag of merchandise not on the free list.

"I know my husband will be really happy about this, but Clinique has a special promotion right now that includes eye shadow and blush and it's $25," said consumer Michele Chapa.

The free makeup is for specific items from nine different product lines that include items from Clinique, Chanel, Christian Dior, Estee Lauder and Giorgio Armani.

We have a full list of the exact products being given away and the stores participating on my consumer blog.

The giveaway lasts for one week or as long as supplies last. We doubt those supplies will last the full week. Some stores were already running low Tuesday on certain items.

Houston Consumer Blog | Consumer channel | Angels | Green Team | Stretch Your Dollar| Headlines at a glance