If you are shopping for a dress — or anything, really — you never want to overpay.
Websites that offer designer-look dresses for a fraction of the cost are popping up all over. But before you click, beware.
Discount prom and bridal dresses
Bridesmaids, prom goers and women across the country are ordering discount dresses, then ending up devastated when their dress arrives.
"Three are the wrong size, one is damaged, I got five instead of six," one frustrated bride told us last year.
Several other women have told us they got tattered dresses that looked nothing like the glamorous photos they saw online. "The color's not at all what I wanted," one bridesmaid said.
Now, a report in "Woman's Day" magazine (and republished in "Good Housekeeping") looks into the proliferation of discount-dress websites that generate thousands of complaints.
Dress sellers to watch out for
"Woman's Day's" report says online dress sellers to avoid include:
Many difficult returns
Many shoppers don't realize at first why these sites are different from trusted retailers like Kohls, Macy's or Nordstorm: Ease of returns.
Those stores all allow easy returns. Many of these dress sites are in China, and there's often no cheap way to make a return.
Women report return shipping fees as high as $75, making it cheaper to just throw the dress away than to try and exchange it. That's why the Better Business Bureau gives several of these online dress sellers an "F" rating, for tough returns and unanswered complaints.
Another website not on the above list, but also receiving an "F" from the BBB for many complaints, is TBDress.com.
Checking to see where the dress seller is located can be difficult, asmany now use a California mailing address, so that it appears you are ordering from an American company.
My advice: Google any online clothing retail website for reviews and complaints, and if you find more than a handful, you may want to keep looking, so you don't waste your money.
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“Don't Waste Your Money” is a registered trademark of Scripps Media, Inc. (“Scripps”). John Matarese reports on deals and scams so you Don't Waste Your Money. "Like" his page on Facebook and follow him on Twitter @JohnMatarese.