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Lifecell and other wrinkle cream ripoffs

There are many fake review sites out there that seem to provide unbiased, independent reviews of various wrinkle cream products.  Unfortunately, many of these sites are setup by affiliate marketers trying to generate commissions for the products they are shilling for (see the explanation of affiliate marketing here).

A typical format for an affiliate page would be a review site comparing 3-10 products, with one product getting the best rating (e.g. 5 star) and another product getting a mediocre or bad rating (e.g. 2-3 stars).  Making all the products 5 stars doesn’t work because people will pick up on that.  Two-sided reviews tend to be more effective.

The product that makes the affiliate marketer the most money gets the top spot, followed by the next most profitable, etc. etc.

So do these products really work?  I don’t know because I’m not a woman or a dermatologist.  But I can tell you that you need to be very careful when it comes to these products because a lot of deceptive practices are used to market them.  Here are a few of them:

Fake comments

Some sites will add fake comments from “visitors” to add an element of social proof.  We tend to be more likely to do something if everybody else is doing it too.  If this trick didn’t work, affiliate marketers wouldn’t be using it.

The following example is from wrinkleserased.com/lifecell-skin-cream/.  In this particular case, all the commenters’ websites point to http://none/.  Clearly these aren’t real comments because real people won’t post the same broken link.  This is a case where the affiliate marketer didn’t do a good job at making the comments look realistic.

wrinkleserased-fake-comment

Geo-targeting

Some websites will also personalize the landing page to its visitors so that the author of the page appears to be from the same city.  For example, Suppose I go to the site riyawrinklefree.com and I am browsing the Net from Toronto, Ontario (ON).

I see the following comment on the site:

riyawrinklefree-geo-targeti

This is performed by a Javascript on that site.  (Disabling Javascript will cause that script to not work and show blanks instead.)

What a coincidence!! I'm from <b>
                          <script src="http://j.maxmind.com/app/geoip.js"></script><script type="text/javascript"><!--
document.write(geoip_city());
// --></script>, <script type="text/javascript"><!--
document.write(geoip_region());
// --></script> </b>too! How long did it take to ship?

Sneaky bastards.

Appeal to authority

A lot of these sites will post logos of major media outlets on their site (e.g. ABC, CBS, New York Times, CBS, National Post, etc.) to give their product some credibility.  But chances are, none of these media outlets talk about the specific product being sold.

Similar appeals are made to celebrities and to TV personalities such as Oprah and Dr. Oz.  Affiliate marketers will find weak excuses to claim a connection to make the product sound more credible.

Some other products in this space

  • Lifecell
  • Dermajuv
  • Belisi RX
  • Revitol
  • Athene 7 minute facelift
  • Alphaderma CE
  • Strivectin SD
  • Freeze 24/7
  • Murad Resurgence
  • Hydroderm
  • And many more

Be careful out there!

10 Comments

  1. cathy wrote:

    We should create a website that truly offers reviews without compensation to the person reviewing the products. This way, there is no hidden incentive to review s product because one is being paid.

    Tuesday, August 31, 2010 at 10:42 am | Permalink
  2. Michelle wrote:

    I don’t get the current business attitude off ripping customers off and zero customer service. Personally I would think it makes more sense to look after a customer who is already spending money on a product and have them return and recommend friends than have to pour time and money trying to get one off buyers onto the product.
    Guess that’s long term thinking, they’re all in it for a quick buck.

    Tuesday, October 5, 2010 at 6:50 pm | Permalink
  3. Tania S wrote:

    I agree. I bought MD Visage antiwrinkle cream. No instant results. I rang for a refund since they offered “free trials” and got abused. I also bought a $260 dead sea cream from London sales in Aus and found the contaioner empty and got the run around for replacing it. I’m still buying skin creams but certainly never again from those two companies!

    Tuesday, October 5, 2010 at 6:55 pm | Permalink
  4. Derek wrote:

    Quite ironic that you are blabbing on about affiliate sites, moaning about affiliates making money yet you have adsense sprawled across the top of your page promoting the very sites you are bitching about – Don’t pretend you care about the consumer you muppe

    Wednesday, October 6, 2010 at 5:41 pm | Permalink
  5. THANK YOU wrote:

    THANKS FOR POINTING THIS OUT. THERE ARE WAY TOO MANY OF THESE OUT THERE. LOOK AT http://WWW.WRINKLE BEST.COM IT HAS THE SAME PRODUCT LINES THERE I CANT BELIEVE IT. THAT WAS THE ONE THAT GOT ME AND I WAS RIPPED OFF.

    Thursday, December 2, 2010 at 6:59 pm | Permalink
  6. Randy wrote:

    THIS SITE IS A JOKE, YOU DON’T UNDERSTAND WHAT AFFILIATE MARKETING IS, NOR DO YOU READ DISCLAIMERS THAT ARE CLEAR ON THE MOTIVE OR PURPOSE OF THE WEBSITE.

    Sunday, January 30, 2011 at 10:21 pm | Permalink
  7. 1-Sobelabs – wrinkle cream – need another number besides 1-888-304-4940.

    The wrinkle creams advertised on all sites, are a rip-off.They have charged my account for $74.95 TWICE. With a 14 day free trial (@$3.95) and 30 days return policy. They have my email address as well – no delivery notification or debit notification, the 30 days are up. I never signed for either package and found out they were delivered to the next door shop. I have called them repeatedly and they say, “Well you should remember that you ordered a package and keep up with the days.” I have returned both packages today (unopened) and I am only getting back one $74.95.I guess they need the $74.95 more than I. Happy Monday!

    Monday, March 7, 2011 at 4:49 pm | Permalink
  8. jen wrote:

    sooo many cheesy comments lol who would beleive those cult comments lol

    Sunday, March 13, 2011 at 11:50 am | Permalink
  9. Katja wrote:

    LIFECELL:

    I think it’s a terrible cream with even more terrible results! I’m from Europe and I was very curious the first time I read about it. So I bought it from a UK store though the price was very high, about 120 GBP. But anyway I just wanted give it a try and what else can I say…it smells terrible and the worst: there are many grainy little particles in it who scratches the skin. After a couple of day my skin looked the worst ever! I was really shocked and didn’t expect such a bad result. I don’t think I bought a fake cream. Maybe someone could confirm the grainy particles in it like mine had if that’s normal? It’s the worst cream I ever bought in my whole life and I could cry I spent a lot of money for such a crap! never again!!

    Tuesday, June 19, 2012 at 3:03 pm | Permalink
  10. Rose wrote:

    The affiliate you are referring to are trying to make a living, just like you are.

    The first piece of content on this page is an advert for an anti aging product.

    Pot – Kettle – Black

    Saturday, April 20, 2013 at 11:01 pm | Permalink