My NuMe Nightmare

Hi everyone,

Today, I’m sharing my experience with NuMe, a company that gets quite a bit of buzz on the internet for their hair care products.

I’m going to backtrack a bit for a second. I’ve been using the same Conair hair dryer since before I was in high school. In the past 10 years or so, I’ve never had any problems with it until it started making a weird noise about 2 weeks ago. After 10 years, I can justify getting a new dryer, besides I have a horrifying memory from my middle school years of one of my friends bringing her hair dryer downstairs glowing orange {like the glow of molten metal} and ever since then, I’ve been terrified of any malfunctioning device that could potentially set my hair on fire {especially given my inability to smell smoke}, so I immediately started looking for a new hair dryer.

I’d been looking online and have had my eye on two hair dryers for quite some time now. The Misikko HANAair hair dryer ($194.99 on sale…) and NuMe’s Signature Ionic Dryer ($219 on sale…) Naturally, these were “investment” pieces, and I wasn’t exactly ready to drop $200 on a hair dryer, so I was happy to find a 70% off promo code for NuMe.

And that’s where the nightmare starts…

Upon checking my receipt, I realized the promo code only took off 60% not 70%. I immediately contacted NuMe’s customer support via email explaining the issue. This was the response I received:

Thank you for contacing NuMe. In response to your question, codes are only valid for single use, and are applied to all eligible items in your cart at the time you complete your order. Once used, your code is considered redeemed, and cannot be used again, even if the total amount of your card did not meet the full promotional value of the voucher or coupon you are using.

Basically, they stated that because the code was used, they couldn’t issue me a refund. But wait? Didn’t I order it from you? Weren’t you the company that charged my card? Of course you can issue a refund. I replied explaining this, and got this response:

Thank you for contacting NuMe. Insider70 was an offer that has expired; however, it was extended as a courtesy but with a 60% off instead of a 70% off. We apologize for the inconvenience this may have caused. Please keep in mind that offers are subject to change without notice.

So now they are saying the code was expired, and they gave me the 60% off as a courtesy. Had they just come out and said this with some sort of notice like “This promo code has expired, but we have taken 60% off as a courtesy,” I’d have been satisfied. Instead all I got was an email saying they’d forward my feedback to marketing.

During this ordeal, I actually reached out to them via their Facebook page as well, and they apologized asking me to private message them. I did so promptly, but sadly never received any response.

I wish I could say that was the end of my NuMe nightmare, but it gets worse.

My Signature Ionic Dryer arrived on February 12. I was excited to have a “working” hair dryer that didn’t pose any risk to setting my head on fire at any moment. The dryer comes with 2 concentrator nozzles. Naturally I tested everything out of the box. Hair dryer works – check. Everything is included – check. Concentrators fit – WRONG.

The concentrators did go on the hair dryer, but before I could move the hair dryer to my hair, they’d slipped off the slippery “soft touch finish” and landed on the floor. My first thought was that I must be doing something wrong. Maybe I’m not pushing them on far enough. Maybe they interlock somehow. All my efforts failed, and I contacted support once again.

The same gentleman I’d previously been dealing with responded to my new request, and explained they’d send out replacement concentrators. At this point I was hopeful. This was the first time I felt like NuMe support might not be awful. That hope was shortlived though.

The concentrators arrived fairly quickly. Sadly they also did not fit. These wouldn’t even fit over the nozzle part of the dryer. In fact, they were so small, they fit INSIDE the original nozzles I had received.

I once again contacted support explaining the issue. This was the response I received:

Thank you for contacting NuMe. We apologize that you are having trouble with your Hair Dryer, please be advised that these nozzles were tested prior to being sent and proved to be in working order. We recommend switching out the Hair Dryer as that may be the problem, or we can approve your return for a refund for the purchase price. Please advise

Now this first bit shocked me. I’m not sure which dryer they tested it on, but it certainly wasn’t the one I had (one of the only two models they sell).

At this point, I explained that if the dryer was defective, I would be happy to just to return the dryer and get a refund. While at it, I included this picture in my response to illustrate how well the replacement concentrators fit:

IMG_2874

The next response I got was even better….

Thank you for contacting NuMe. Please be advised that according to these pictures the nozzles you initially recieved were for the Classic Hair Dryer which is why they fell off, the 2nd set of nozzles should work fine with your Signature Hair Dryer; however, as advised we will accept your return, please return all items to :

NuMe Style
7028 Valjean Ave.
Van Nuys Ca 91406

Also, please be advised that we will not send a Pre-Paid Label you must return the items at your cost, please obtain a tracking number when doing so to avoid the item being lost or stolen and to reassure that a refund will be issued.

So now he’s telling me the nozzles I received IN THE BOX originally were the wrong ones. {Wait what?} NuMe ships the Signature Ionic dryer with the concentrators for the WRONG dryer?! The replacements which didn’t even fit were for the right one? And on top of that they expect ME TO PAY to return their defective product?

At this point, I’ve dealt with being overcharged, shipped a faulty product, spent week dealing with customer support, and now I’m being asked to pay for returning a defective product. I do not think that asking for a prepaid shipping label after all that is that much to ask for.

I’ve written back asking to have my issue handled by a supervisor. I fear, however, that this issue will need to be escalated to the Better Business Bureau.

As someone who works in the customer support field, good support is something I really pride companies in, but I’m also fairly lenient when it comes to understanding support is a tough job. You’re faced with policies that may not always be fair to the customer. I want to give this gentleman the benefit of the doubt. However  I really do hope that NuMe changes their support model in the future, and I hope that in writing this, it will save someone the trouble of this potentially happening to them.

I, for one, know I will not be purchasing anything from NuMe again. I will also not be recommending the company to any one who asks me for recommendations. It really is unfortunate considering I had hoped this to be the first purchase of many. As for my hair dryer, I’ve ordered a Conair Infiniti Pro Hair Dryer which was under $35. Lesson learned – more expensive isn’t always better. Hopefully this one works out better than NuMe.

Update: I’m not sure what happened – whether it was my Facebook posts, tweet, this blog post, or just NuMe realizing the error in their ways, but they did agree to send me a shipping label. They claim they are shipping one [the label] again, which is news to me because they haven’t shipped one before. I’m also not sure why they wouldn’t just email one to print out, but in any event, I’m hopeful that this will be the beginning to getting the issue resolved.

Update 12/9/2014: I’ve been using my Conair Infiniti Pro Hair Dryer for around 8 months now, and I love it. It worked much better than the NuMe dryer and for the price, you just can’t beat it. Plus it’s by far the best looking hair dryer I’ve ever owned. When I pulled it out of the box, I couldn’t help but marvel at the color. It reminded me of a fancy car paint job.

Signature Update