Deception—Package the Goods Honestly Please!

Deception: The act of deceiving someone.  A thing that deceives.

We’ve all experienced deception.

Perhaps it was that boyfriend who cheated on you.  To make matters worse, perhaps he did so with your best friend—or any friend.

It’s happened to most of us!  Deception!

Or maybe it was someone who took an idea of yours and made it their own.

No. Stealing ideas can’t be legally taken away–but people do it all the time. It’s deceptive and dishonest and vile. But it happens to the best of us!

Perhaps it was a coworker who stole a project from under you, took all the credit and you were left standing like an idiot.

The look you have when you realized a coworker screwed you over!

People deceive.  People steal, and they steal intangible from you to make themselves appear better, bigger and more creative.

It happens to us all and makes us trust less. It makes us jaded.  It makes us a bit harder.

Seriously?  Yeah.  I’m becoming jaded with all the deception that surrounds us!

And in my deeply shallow thinking, one of the worst deceptive crimes is packaging.  Yes.  deceptive packaging.

It happened to me the other day and I cannot shake it off.

Who would think that a $6.00 bottle of face primer would trigger me into a frenzied state about deception?  But–It did!

I was getting ready to prime my face with my e.l.f. Tone Adjusting Face Primer.  I happen to be a huge fan of this primer.  Anyway, I pumped and just a bit came out of the bottle.  I pumped again. Nothing.  It was odd because this was a relatively new bottle—I hadn’t gotten it that long ago.  Perhaps something happened to the pump.  And so, I opened the bottle.  And I found the most deceptive packaging of my life. Inside the bottle was a cylinder. The cylinder was a very light lavender. The bottle, frosted plastic, gave the illusion of the lavender cylinder being the actual product.  Inside that cylinder was another cylinder.  This small cylinder was where the product was held.

After turning the bottle upside down, things appeared suspicious.  Cylinder one was inserted to make fools like me believe there was more product than there actually was….

Cylinder two–see that small, slender little thing of a cylinder?  THAT’S where the product was. And it wasn’t much at all! .47 ounces?  That’s less than a half an ounce.  At six bucks it is no bargain!

Now—there was no mention of how much product was in the bottle.  It was on the box that the primer came in.  Add to that, I never bothered to inspect the bottle by turning it upside down when I purchased it and took it home to use.  I trusted e.l.f. as a brand.

And after researching, I did find out that only .47 oz. of product is in this bottle.  More bottle.  More packaging. Less product. At a cost of $6.00.  So basically, the e.l.f. primer isn’t as inexpensive or as great a value and bargain as I thought it was. Deceptive.

I have another bottle of this primer that I opened. I will use it because I purchased it.  However, I will be more educated next time around.  This e.l.f. primer will not be a part of my routine after the present bottle is used up.

This is what drives me up a wall.  I want to see how much product has been used and how much I have left before I rethink a repurchase.

I’m visual. If I can’t see how much is in the bottle or container, then please tell me how much product is inside!

The Ordinary has great packaging. It is honest packaging.  A great many products from the company are packaged pragmatically.  You can see how much product is left.  And for the squeeze tubes, the amount of product is in clear sight.

My The Ordinary bottle of Hyaluronic Acid.  Look!  I can see how much is in the bottle. Same with The Ordinary liquid primer.  The Ordinary places many items in bottles like this.  

And when the products are in squeeze tubes, at least the amount of product is clearly displayed on the packaging!

I’m a fan of my Skin Actives.  I like products in jars. When I open the jar, I can get a visual of how much product is in the jar.

My jar of Skin Actives Dream Cream is almost at the bottom–and that’s a nightmare!  I need to order!

My beloved Je Ne Sais Quoi Vitality Lip Flush (of which I have three) by iT cosmetics.  I can see how much product has been used, and by God, I’ll scrape every iota out of that tube!

Chippy also likes this.  He tried to eat the tube but I saved it!  See how much product is left?  I’m scrapping that barrel!  I LOVE this stuff! And–I know when to repurchase!

My point is simply this, don’t deceive me with your fancy packaging. I’m tired of it.  I don’t care about your frosted plastic or glass. I don’t care about the ridiculous amount of money that was spent on packaging your product to make it look nice and appealing.  I want product. How come a company like The Ordinary can be a success without the ribbons and bows?

Be honest.  Be truthful.  Be real.  Be transparent.

The same goes for food items and recipes.

It’s that time of year when the comfort food gets placed on the table.  It’s also that time of year when I’m on the lookout for good, hearty dishes to make for our Saturday evening feasts.

Bonaparte has had a hankering for Escargot lately.  We used to buy frozen escargot in the shells from Wegmans.  However, and I think it may be due to some bizarre law that you can’t buy snails in the shell in the State of Pennsylvania anymore, the store no longer sells them in our area.

Bonaparte ordered these babies through the internet. And we got what we ordered!!!

Naturally, my Gallic hero did some online sleuthing and found them at Gourmet Food Store, an online entity.  This online store is amazing! He ordered two plates, spent a ton of money on shipping, and we received them within two days.  We had one plate last night and they were spectacular!  Earthy, buttery, garlicky little nuggets.  This is an online company to be trusted.  They were honest in their online description of the dish and what we received was better than expected.  No deception here!

Such goodness in a little shell!  Miam Miam!!

You can hear Bonaparte talking about these snails!

And then there was the Daniel Boulud’s Chicken in Cream recipe that I watched him make on Mind of a Chef.  It looked freaking awesome.

Chef Daniel Boulud  sure knows how to make a great chicken dish. And now it’ll be on my regular winter rotation!

With pen in hand, I perused the internet and found a YouTube video, but I needed more. I needed an actual recipe and found it on Elle Décor. 

The recipe looked inviting and Bonaparte, knowing who Boulud is, suggested I try it out.  His one concession was that I cook the mushrooms separately because Bonaparte cannot stand mushrooms. I had no issue with it.

I’m a self-proclaimed “Herb Whore”.  I can’t just use a little herbs. I need to use a ton. And this recipe called for a bouquet of herbs that was very petit by my standards. Still, I followed Chef Boulud’s instruction.

Bonaparte, who always must put his two-cent’s worth in, suggested adding Cognac.  I told him to go back to watching TV and that this recipe clearly didn’t need the Cognac.

Well, this recipe was fantastic.  Bonaparte agreed that it didn’t need Cognac.  I was floored at the flavors the small herbal bouquet added.  I was blown away.

I am sorry I didn’t take a photo of the mushrooms that I cooked to add to my serving but this chicken dish was incredible!  I ate one thigh.  Bonaparte ate one breast, two wings and a leg.  He couldn’t help it–it was just so good.  It doesn’t look like much cream but there was, I poured it into a sauce thingy.

Honesty in a recipe. And that’s why I love old-school French home cooking.  Simple.  Easy. Honest.

No deception there.

Tell me.  Have you been deceived?  Can you relate to what this post is about? Let me know.  And for your entertainment, here’s a very honest look at my home!  I have it on my YouTube channel and I know that I sound like a broken record but if you enjoy the video, please subscribe.

Enjoy the remainder of the weekend!XOXOXOXO

About Catherine

Far from perfect, but enjoying life as a non-perfect and flawed individual at 60 years young. I'm still wondering what I'll be when I grow up! The characters in my life's screenplay include my better half. He is a refined Frenchman who grew up in Paris and summered in St. Tropez. I grew up in Long Island and summered in Long Island. I am not refined. My three grown children are also a big part of my life. For their sake, they happily live where their careers have taken them! But I can still mother them from a distance! I write about the mundane. I write about deeply shallow issues. But whatever I write or muse about--it'll always be a bit on the humorous and positive side! It's all good!
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24 Responses to Deception—Package the Goods Honestly Please!

  1. Momcat says:

    Uggggh I hate the package deception that goes on!! Such a waste of plastic which just goes into the land fill. Over packaging is my pet peeve (are you listening Costco) this is why I love my Skin Biology products…old school boring, plain packages but with clear labels and easy to see how much is left. I am not keen on jars for sanitary reasons but I use a couple plastic Popsicle sticks to transfer products. That E.L.F primer turned out to be more $$ than you thought, thanks for sharing though. I was looking at it in Walmart but not now.

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Momcat! Yeah. That’s why I dig The Ordinary–the packaging allows you to see what’s in there! Arrrrghhh! Over packaging. Why???? Laura Geller has a couple of great products and they are over packaged. Who needs the plastic and the boxes? Drives me nuts!!!

      • Momcat says:
        Hey Catherine,
        I know how much you love Fragonard! I found this web store ( Esprit du Sud) out of Montréal that sells the Fragonard products. The prices are in CAD and flat rate of $15.00 to ship to USA. I know you would rather go direct to France but just in case you run out! Now this packaging is just gorgeous…..

  2. angelin2014 says:

    Where do I begin to till the story of how deceived I have been…?
    No, truthfully I am such a skeptic I not always but often believe the worst, so I’m hard to deceive. But I have had a similar experience with a cleanser and a foundation. I HATE it when I cant see the product. Ending up one morning with nothing to put on my face – terrible!
    But the worst deception, on a serious note, is when people dont tell you the truth because they think they are being kind, when in reality they are being cowards. I hate that! Better have bad news that are true than fake news that are nice. Great post Catherine! Have a good week!

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Angelin! Yeah. It sucks when you think you have product and then….nothing is left! Why. Just. Why??? Glad you enjoyed the post!!!! You have a good week too!! XOXOXOXO!!!!

  3. fiona says:

    Hey you’re right, I’ve just turned mine upside down and seen that central cylinder, why didn’t I notice that? (Because the sneaky bastards put that elf primer in a box.)
    Don’t get me started on packaging. Like France, in the UK we now have to pay for a carrier bag when we buy something, which I think is a great thing, but it’s still OK for shops to over package fruit and veg in cartons, punnets and shrink wrap when surely a paper bag would suffice or even better nothing at all, just bring your own.
    Your Chicken in Cream looks tasty indeed. I made Coq au Vin for lunch today but forgot to take the blog photo until we’d eaten most of it. Doh! xxx

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Fiona! I swear, I never turn a bottle upside down but from now on–I will. I had no idea of the deception until I thought the bottle was faulty. I’m so annoyed because I really like that primer–but don’t deceive me. And elf isn’t the only guilty brand here. It’s unreal.
      Oh. I only WISH that the USA would follow France and the UK with the bagging thing–I see more and more people bringing their own grocery bags here but stilll we need to go a long way!!!! XOXOXOXO!!!!

  4. Anne Nickol says:

    Catherine, I was so disappointed to hear about the Elf primer. I only use the Elf, and I have 2 different types. I am retired and have fibromyalgia, so only end up going out and wearing make-up about 1-3 times a week. So, I go through the primer slowly. But I thought I was getting a good deal. I do love how it works. But I don’t want to be spending more than I need to when I thought I had a bargain. Please refresh my mind regarding the other primers you use that are reasonably priced. I know you tried two of the Ordinary primers (I think). Is there anything else that you would recommend?


    • Catherine says:

      Hi Anne. I’m disappointed too. I thought that primer was a great value and it isn’t. I happen to like both of the Ordinary’s primers but I do like the liquid slightly better and the price is great for 1 ounce of product. I feel like I’ve deceived my friends for recommending the e.l.f. primer. I’ve learned a great lesson and that is to check everything about the product before recommending!! XOXOXOXO!!!!

  5. julietC says:

    Oh I get mad when I am screwed over (such as a former colleague yet to be forgiven but then she screwed a number of us and I can forgive her screwing me, almost – but forgive her screwing my work wifey – hell no and no again!), or when packaging is not what it seems or a company lets you down…then I am happy to bear a grudge for all eternity (and warn others, warning others on facebook and other social media often has wonderful results). I love products like Nuxe – man that stuff goes on for ages, which is a good thing as it is lovely. I also find Kiehls is good for packaging – I have a face wash that I am thinking of bequeathing my grandbabies (and I don’t expect any grandbabies for many years yet if ever, maybe I can bequeath it to my great-grandbabies..) as a tiny bit goes a long way and I have had this particular face wash forrr-EVAH, and their jars of stuff are fantastic too – you see exactly what you get. I did have the sad experience of a bottle of gin ending prematurely – I was very sad as the Botanist (a Scottish gin and rather gorgeous) comes in a very thick embossed bottle, once I figured that I was delighted to realise I am not quite the lush I was beginning to think I might be. I am keeping the bottle and will maybe try and figure out how to turn it into a lamp as I am determined to get my moneys worth.

    Dinner looks sublime – I love herbs, any herbs and have had a herb garden of some sort since I was 8 (my family say I was a weird kid – as though that is a problem or something 🙂 ), our dinner tonight was ham and lentil soup – very traditional in Scotland when we are getting cold and wintry, and yes I fired in some finely chopped parsley.

    • Catherine says:

      Hey Juliet! Yup! I know perfectly well what it is to be screwed over by a coworker. Beware the office moles–they have no social mores and are vile people. I love the gin story by the way!!!
      Ohhhhhh…ham and lentil soup sounds so comforting right now. I may have pasta tonight or soup. I’m unsure!!! But I’m cold and hungry!!! XOXOXOXO!!!!

  6. Anne says:

    Exactly the same thing happened to me with the elf primer! I also thought the pump was faulty, opened the bottle and could not believe THE TINY LITTLE container inside the large bottle!!! Maybe half a teaspoon of actual primer. I liked the product and had a replacement ready to use, but once that was gone – never again, I followed your recommendation and now I am using the Ordinary products, foundation not yet available in Australia but they will let me know when it arrives and I will be purchasing as soon as they are here. Their primers are very good and I will be continuing to purchase them.Thanks for the recommendation to this company. Your food looks delicious and love your Christmas decor.

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Anne! Ugh. This laptop. I could have sworn that I replied to your comment. Anyway, Yeah! Can you believe it? That tiny amount of product surrounded by oversized and overpriced packaging? I am ridiculously annoyed and pissed off. I’ve got The Ordinary’s liquid primer on today and still loving it. And I get to see how much is left!!! XOXOXOXOXO!!!!

  7. Deborah I Malinoski says:

    Great blog, Catherine! I, too, have gotten to be very conscious of packaging and value. I was reminded of the lengths I can go to when trying to retrieve EVERY LAST DROP of product recently when I saw that my daughter inherited the compulsion! We go ga-ga over a sunscreen that is made available when staying at a lovely inn in Ojai, Ca. It can be purchased from the spa shop and it’s a little pricey so it’s a special treat that goes in the stockings at Christmas. I was staying with my daughter in May or June and saw that she had used scissors to cut open the tube end of the sunscreen—-ensuring that every last drop was used!!!!! LOVE IT!

    • Catherine says:

      Deborah. I DO THE SAME THING WITH TUBES!!!!! I CUT THEM!!! OMG. I thought I was the only one. I’m sorry but if I’m paying for a product, I am going to use every last drop!!!!!! XXOXOXOXOXOXO!!!!

  8. junedesilva says:

    Les escargots – miam! 😋 miam!

  9. Deb lynch says:


  10. bluetulips says:

    Interested to see if the products details were on either KMART of the E.L.F website. Interesting because none show the size eg mls. On the ELF site they also sell large bottles of primer which say they are 30mls and cost AUD $30 for 30ml and it is AUD $16 for what I am guessing is 15ml. Such a rip off for a budget product!!!!! I will buy higher end for $30 for 30ml

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Dianne. Supposedly the information is on the box–which is even more wasted packaging. It was listed as .47 oz when I went online and did some sleuthing. Ridiculous!! XOXOXOXOXO!!!!

  11. Liz McGarry says:

    I just discovered the same deception in my Boots No. 7 Advanced Intense Serum…seemed as if I’d just purchased it and it was gone…wouldn’t have thought much more about it except for your post. There should be consumer protection rules about this sort of thing. I guess they wouldn’t be in violation if they put the true volume (or is it weight?) on the package.

  12. Pillar says:

    I’ve often been tempted to try ELF products but then been turned-off when I checked the amount on the bottle. Could never understand why people thought they were so cheap when their amounts were half the size of anyone else’s! Yes, very annoying.

    As for deception in my life. Oh boy, have I ever been deceived! The saddest thing is I will never be as trusting (gullible?) as I once was. Never ever. I simply can’t afford to be. That makes me sad.

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Pillar! Oh god. Don’t get me started on elf any more than I have been! It’s so true. I thought I was getting a great deal on the primer and boy–what a rip off!! The amounts are ridiculous! Please—I have been trusting with all the wrong people in my life and have suffered dearly. Now I’m jaded but in an upbeat and humorous sort of way!!!! Thank you so much for reading and commenting. I really appreciate it!!! XOXOXOXO!!!!

  13. jilly says:

    Hi Hon,
    me too, I always cut tubes in half and am regularly infuriated by the amount left in there that I otherwise wouldn’t get to, but my personal no-no is glass pumps.
    .Revlon’s ‘Photoready’ is the worst ! I can see about an fifth of the product sitting there in the bottom of the glass pump with it’s tightly sealed metal collar and I just think ‘well your loss Revlon, I’m not dim enough to buy THIS again’.
    Hurray for The Ordinary, maybe others will catch on and follow , it’s just such a scam.
    Love the Chips attitude, don’t I just know that ‘ I’m running off to eat this thing that I know I should not have’ run !!
    Jilly x

    • Catherine says:

      Hi Jilly!! Right??? I’m not wasting one iota of product that I spent money on and I will get every last bit out of the packaging! Don’t get me started on Revlon’s packaging, I’m not a fan. I think, and hope that other companies will follow The Ordinary’s simple approach to packaging and perhaps lower their price points!

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