Friday night…

“You should get the Grouper.  You love Grouper, and it’s the catch of the day!!”

I scowled at him.  “Are you kidding? It says ‘Market Price’!!  I totally don’t know how much that is!”

“Oh come on.  You can ask if you’re that hung up about it.  I’m sure it’s about the same price as all of the other entrees.”

“Nope.  I’ll just get something else.”

Saturday morning…

“Didn’t you want to get some strawberries for the kids?  Here they are.”

I looked all around.  “Yes, but… I don’t see the price anywhere.  I’ll just wait.”

“You’ve really got a complex about this whole shampoo thing, don’t you?”

I calmly promised.  “Mark my words.  I will never buy anything. Ever again. Without knowing the price first.”

Backing up to Friday morning…

I needed more shampoo and conditioner.

I went to my favorite salon store to browse through their half-off room.

(Being that I have long, thin, easily breakable hair, I find it necessary to use nice shampoo in order to keep it from looking like four-day-old roadkill.  And since Chris is the one who insists that I keep it long, he gives me an unlimited hair product budget.)

(However, I do all of our bills and budget, and I can’t stand paying full price for much of anything, hence my obsession with the half-off room.)

I didn’t have the kids with me, so I decided to go ahead and stock up for a few months while I had full use of all of my limbs.  I found a couple of conditioners that would work, but I was having trouble finding a shampoo that was color-safe.  I picked up a bottle that said it was perfect for every type of hair and every follicular need.

Sure it is.  I’m sure they all say that.

However, it looked promising, so I took it – despite the fact that it didn’t seem to have a price marked.

That’s okay – all liter bottles of salon shampoo cost about the same – $30 full price, $15 half price.  I’m sure it’s right around there somewhere.

I took all of my products up front.  I asked the girl at the counter (who had excitedly tried to help me when I came in so as to earn her commission) if she thought that the shampoo would be okay on color treated hair.

She half-laughed, and said, “Oh yeah.  It will be just fine.”

I puzzled over her laughter, but let it go.

She rang up all of my products, and as I had my hand mid-air to swipe my card, she called out my total.

Unfortunately, by the time my brain registered the too-big-to-be-on-Sesame-Street number she had just spoken, my hand had already completed the swiping motion.

“Whoa.  Wait a minute – that sounds way too high.”


She handed me my receipt.Receipt2


A HUNDRED AND FIFTY DOLLARS!?!?  What in the world was a hundred and fifty dollars???”

“Nothing was.  But that shampoo was originally $150 – you only paid $75.  It’s the most expensive thing we’ve ever carried in this store.  It’s probably the most expensive shampoo in the world.  That’s why they quit making it.”

“I don’t want a hundred and fifty dollar shampoo! I want to return it.”

“It was seventy-five dollars.  And you can’t return it.  (she motioned to the ‘NO RETURNS OR EXCHANGES’ sign behind her)  But I know a few people who use it, and they say it’s awesome!!”

“No.  I. Do. Not. Want. That. Shampoo.  I haven’t left the store, and I barely finished my purchase before I said I didn’t want it.  There has to be something you can do.”

“Well…since you haven’t left the store…I guess I can exchange it for some other products.”

“Oh good grief – I’m going to have shampoo for a year.  Maybe next time you might consider telling someone that it’s the most expensive shampoo in the world before they buy it?”

“I guess so…”

That wasn’t very convincing.

I left my two week’s worth of groceries shampoo up front and went to find reasonable things to exchange it for, carefully checking all prices first.  I came back  with a gigantic armful of hair care to equal the amount of that sinfully expensive bottle.

“Look how much shampoo you were able to get!!  Isn’t that great?”


So great.

Because I totally planned on coming in here and dropping that kind of cash today.

Thank you SO much for your awesome help.

Enjoy your commission – buy the Catch of the Day on me.

32 thoughts on “Price As Marked.

  1. I would feel sick about that sort of thing for days….barely feeling better with the stock up of ‘cheap shampoo’. Good story though :)

      1. I would have never forgiven myself for not asking the price. I’m such a cautious buyer that I feel guilty if I overpay by a few dollars, let alone $100. I bet my hair would look much better if I actually went to a salon and asked for help with what to buy. I wonder if they all have 1/2 off rooms.

  2. And of course it was the $150 bottle that didn’t have a price on it. Good lord, $150? You should have kept it, just to see if there was a genie in there; can’t imagine why it would be worth it otherwise.

  3. Oh girl, I am with Amy on this one. I would have thrown one more hissy fit and there would be no way I would be paying for all that shampoo. And I hate confrontation with all my being. Now I am all mad for you! :)

  4. What a crock! I would have been so mad. I think stores and restaurants purposely leave the prices off some items. I’m forever asking for a price check, which is so irritating.

  5. I would have at least asked to talk to the manager to see if they could refund it since you had not left the store yet. That is crazy, I need higher price shampoo for my curls or they look bad but not 150 dollar shampoo.

  6. That is crazy!!! I wonder if they put gold in it, or crushed diamonds ha! On the positive side at least you won’t have to see that lady for a longlong time.

  7. $150 shampoo?? I would have been cancelling my transaction with the credit card company ASAP. I’ve found that Suave shampoo paried with Pantene conditioner works great on my also long, thin, easily breakable hair.

  8. Holy cow!!! That is insane! I don’t care what the little sign says. The price wasn’t marked, and that was ridiculous. She should have refunded your money. Boo on her. On the up side…I guess your hair care needs are totally met for the foreseeable future.

  9. Who in their right mind would spend $150 on a bottle of shampoo?!?!? I guess people with more money than me! Well, look on the bright side, you won’t have to worry about lugging the kiddos along shopping for shampoo for a very long time now!

  10. Jaw dropping in amazement as face is contorting in horror!!!

    Finances make me ill, especially if someone takes the control of them away from me, hence I pay all the bills and take care of the budget in our house. She would have had to call security for me for $150 dollar bottle of shampoo, I would think you need an armed escort home to take the bottle out of the store. And then it probably would have been in my house forever since it would only be used for super special hair washing occassions as it obviously is too nice for everyday, regular hair washing…on second thought, the bottle wouldn’t have come home with me either! :)

    Thank you for postings, I look forward to them. They give me a little mommy outlet. :)

    1. It was a bizarre situation, for sure. I wish I were more confrontational and insistent in situations like that, but I’m not. Therefore, I have a year’s supply of haircare!!

      Thanks for the encouragement on blogging – it’s so appreciated!! Being a Mommy Outlet is quite a high compliment – I know I need them regularly!!

  11. Wow, I have had a few wish-I-would-have-seen-the-price-before-I-swiped but never quite that bad. I can’t believe she didn’t refund your money when it happened two seconds before. I’m sure that policy was put there for people who went home and tried it and didn’t like it. Well at least you won’t have to buy shampoo for a while!

  12. I, too, buy the gold-digger color-preserving shampoo so I don’t have to color my hair as often, but I also hate paying retail, which is why I snap it up when it’s half price at Target.

    I came here via the Mom Jeans post and I cannot thank you enough! I never knew the secret before but now I do! Pocket placement, waistband height, and inseam. I will never look dumpy in jeans again. PS The owner of the consignment store where I bought some Lucky jeans for $15 told me that they “lifted and separated.”

  13. Oh my word! I can’t believe there’s $150 shampoo anywhere, that she didn’t tell you that’s what it was when you bought it, and that she wouldn’t refund it to you since you didn’t even leave the counter, let alone the store! My (joking) motto is that if I can’t find a price, it’s free! I’m diligent about watching the price when things ring up most of the time but now I’m going to have to step it up to make sure the craziness doesn’t spread cross-country!

    Side note: I went to Babies R Us this weekend and decided to stock up on breast pads since all Avent breastfeeding accessories were BOGO 1/2 off. They rang up full price and only discounted it after I said something because the sign happened to be right in front of them…not because of what they were. They told me breast pads are NOT a breastfeeding accessory! Who on earth uses them if they’re not breastfeeding!?!?

  14. my husband once had this happen to him over a sweater. He was probably 19 or 20 (before we were married) and had gone into Structure and found a sweater he just had to have. It was on sale (cuz everything we bought back then was on sale) and he went to pay for it and it turned out to be on sale for $100. Unfortunately, being young and embarrassed (and actually having enough money on him) he paid for it. It became his favorite sweater (by default). It was really soft.

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