Well, I do work at BBW, but only because I enjoy their products so much. Before that, I was just your average customer. I feel like I can give positive accounts both as an employee and as a shopper. When I was "just" a customer, I liked that an SA always welcomed you and directed you to whatever sale was going on, because merchandise is moved so often to accommodate certain promotions, etc.
It's interesting to read the reviews of how the sales associates did or didn't push sales. I'm still employed by the company, so I'm not going to go into any great detail... but yes, we are taught to remind people of the sales and promotions. Some stores may take that further than others, I'm sure. You'll find the same sort of tactics used at Victoria's Secret since they're both owned by the Limited Brands. That didn't sink in on me until I started working for BBW, but there are some subtle similarities between the two stores.
I like the store as an employee, too. They have some of the most comprehensive training and orientation I've seen for a retail store, even for the entry level positions. I was a little scared that I'd never be able to remember every little product and ingredient, but they do a lot to keep the associates informed.
I personally like that the company is starting to branch out, as I get tired of the signature collection sometimes. I love C.O. Bigelow and True Blue Spa and the Aromatherapy collections. I'm also loving the newer scents they've come up with for the signature collection....so much better than the older ones.
I totally love BBW! It is crazy how much money I spend on their products and I always try out new scents! Most of the time I go for their Lotions, Creamy Body Washes and Splashes but I also like their Foaming Soaps. To me, the best way to get their great products is either on a sale or on Ebay, because alwayz paying full store prices would get me dead broke in no time.. :-))
The only thing I don't like about it (besides the high prices) is that they seem to always discontinue the best fragrances, like Sunburst Melon, Blissful Blackberry, Toasted Hazelnut or Strawberry Lemonade just to name a few. Hopefully they will bring back a couple of these great products next year.
I am not a huge B&BW fan but I go to the spring sale and almost always buy Christmas gifts there. Overall, I like the store and don't feel pressured when I'm there. I think they used to be more pushy a few years ago. About the scents: I can't find one that I love but they offer a nice variety. Interestingly, I find that some of their 'new' scents are remarkably similar to ones that were discontinued a few years ago. There's a new Fig & Something scent that is just like a holiday scented shower gel I got about 4 years ago.
It was pretty interesting reading through these reviews as I've worked for BBW for over 5 years in several different stores and for several different people. Nothing's worse to me than coming off as pushy - believe me, we hate being hounded when we shop, too. Some shop directors would like us to pretty literally follow the customer around the store through the entire visit, placing things in their bags/baskets we think they should try. There were even times we carried around tally cards of home many times we've demoed a product on people. Others, like my current SD, simply want us to greet the customers and check on them once or twice. I'm sorry for all of you who've had bad experiences, I've had 'em, too ;)
I also feel for those of you who've felt alienated by the direction the company's going: eliminated the "signature line" and developing the others. I've lost some of my favorites also, and I'm sure you hate hearing "Check back at our semi annual sale!". I personally used nothing but our body lotion before I started working there (and I have very dry, sensitive skin... plus I'm from Minnesota, and it worked beautifully all through the winter). But that's just me, just like all products. Anyway, I don't have much of a point here, but I'm glad that most of you like us!
I love B&BW products. I do find that the salespeople can be VERY pushy, though. Many times I will be greeted by every salesperson they have working on the floor, & they all try to push on me whatever sale or promotion they're having. Once is fine, but they overdo it. And then if I choose to not go for whatever the promotion is (3 for $10, etc), the cashier "reminds" me of the sale at the checkout. Sometimes I simply don't need 5 bottles of lotion, people! I assume they train all their employees in this same manner because the tactics seem universal no matter where the store is.
I also have a bit of a personal issue with the design of the checkout counter. I use a wheelchair & the store I go to has its credit/debit card swipers WAY too high. They're set back on the counter too, so there is no way I can access them. Several times the cashier has asked me to give her my pin # so that she can enter it in for me. I'm not usually a paranoid person, but I really don't like the idea of calling out my pin # in the store. I'm not sure what the ADA code is for card swipers, but I'm considering contacting a higher-up regarding this problem.
I love this store! Especially during the semi-annual sales (summer and after Christmas). I love that the sales last for a month and you can find stuff for up to 75% off. I usually stock up during the sale to last for the six months til the next one! I love the Tutti Dolci line (especially the body washes and lipgloss) and the creamy body washes. My all-time favorites there, though, are the body conditioners in warm vanilla sugar and mango mandarin. I also like fresh vanilla shower gel and the lilac "plug-in" air fresheners.
I have gone into the store a few times. Most of the products have a fake scent, which makes me feel sick & I get a headache. The clerks practically tackle you, pushing products. I just avoid all of those artificial scents now. I much prefer lotions and soaps made of true essential oils and products without mineral oil.
I wasn't one of those B&BW teenagers like most every other girl in my generation - all my sprays and shower gels came from Walgreens. In the past 2 years I've discovered it and though I enjoy the selection and versatility of the fragrences, you can't get past the fact that you are paying too much when there isn't a sale going on. The quality isn't bad, but it's no more unique than Calgon in packaging and scent composition. My favorites would have to be Gardenia, Cherry Blossom, Sweet Pea and Cotton Blossom, but I never step foot inside until there is a storewide sale. The Aromatherapy stuff is nice, but I never felt the need to take any of it home. Better than the B&BW line is the miraculous availability of C.O. Bigelow and Henri Bendel products! Goldie cosmetics are also cute and I hear NARS is available in some locations. Overall I prefer it immediately over The Body Shop (yawn) and would gladly waste 30 minutes in it any day of the week, but I just don't think it's the living end of "luxury" toiletry retailers.
I am like a kid in a candy store when I go the B&BW store. The best time to go is during the semi-annual sales. It is going on right now and then again right after Christmas. You can get the top quality high priced items for dirt cheap. I am obsessed because I buy so much at those prices, but then I don't go back again until the next semi annual sale so I guess I can forgive myself!!