57 Year Old Mom Looks 27!

December 12th, 2012

I feel like the online version of the New York Times has me pegged.  Or to say it another way, NYTimes’ cookies have tracked my online behavior such that its targeted marketing of me is spot on.  I seem to only see ads for movies I’m actually interested in going to see, and vacation rentals appear for places that I spend way too much time fantasizing about.

Given this landscape, you can imagine my horror when the wrinkle ads started to appear – over and over and over again.  Did the cookies know something I didn’t?  Did my face really look that wrinkly?  I tried to shrug it off as some sort of computer glitch – a marketing malfunction on the part of some young, pimply-faced programmer.  But each time I’d see an ad promising to magically remove my wrinkles, I felt like Snow White’s step-mom – the screen simply refused to tell me I was still young and beautiful.

Forced to admit that I am indeed middle-aged,  I clicked on the wrinkle ad – “57 Year Old Mom Looks 27!” – which took me to ConsumerLifestyles.org.  The before-and-after photos looked amazing.  A little too amazing so I skipped all the glowing testimonials and offers for free samples, and headed to the “Terms & Agreement” section of the site.

Here’s what I learned: While you might get some “free” samples of these miracle lotions, you still have to pay for shipping and handling AND agree to be charged for future shipments of the cream (if you don’t cancel asap) at a cost of up to almost $100 per month! As for those photos and testimonials?  The site says, “This website, and any page on the website, is based loosely off a true story, but has been modified in multiple ways including, but not limited to: the story, the photos, and the comments.  Thus, this page, and any page on this website, are not to be taken literally or as a non-fiction story.”

So the website wants me to buy its lotions but not “literally” believe anything I see or read on the site.  Come on, Consumer LifeStyles.  While I may have a few wrinkles, that doesn’t make me stupid.

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About the Author

Bonnie Patten

Bonnie, executive director of TINA.org, is an attorney and mother of three. Her commitment to educating the public about deceptive marketing stems from her belief that education is the only viable way to effectively eradicate the market for false ads.



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