3 On Your Side
3 On Your Side

$900 in skin-care purchase 'wrinkles' Valley woman's wallet

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A Valley woman says she spent nearly $900 on Vine Vera skin care products. (Source: 3TV) A Valley woman says she spent nearly $900 on Vine Vera skin care products. (Source: 3TV)
"It was a real hard sell," Sharon Kurtz said. (Source: 3TV) "It was a real hard sell," Sharon Kurtz said. (Source: 3TV)
Kurtz said she wound up buying nearly a dozen different skin care products from the Vine Vera kiosk. She later found those products online for a fraction of what she paid. (Source: 3TV) Kurtz said she wound up buying nearly a dozen different skin care products from the Vine Vera kiosk. She later found those products online for a fraction of what she paid. (Source: 3TV)
3 On Your Side emailed Cine Vera's parent company about the huge price difference between what it sells at its kiosks versus the same -- much cheaper products -- online. (Source: 3TV) 3 On Your Side emailed Cine Vera's parent company about the huge price difference between what it sells at its kiosks versus the same -- much cheaper products -- online. (Source: 3TV)
(3 ON YOUR SIDE) -

If you walk through a Valley mall, there's a good chance you'll hear something like this: "This is going to change your life."

It's a pretty big claim that's followed up with a compliment. "You're very pretty."

You’re looking at undercover video shot inside a Valley mall by 3 On Your Side.

"This is the syringe, OK. This is made from the Shiraz wine, OK. All of your product is made from the wine; this is Vine Vera."

Vine Vera is a skin care product for both men and women and, according to the company's website, it sells "products and skin care that really make a difference in your life."

Sharon Kurtz says it made a difference in her life -- financially, anyway.

"It was a real hard sell," she said.

Kurtz walks inside malls for exercise. She says she was approached by a Vine Vera salesperson during a recent walk.

"I wanted to continue my walk and I said, 'I really don't have time for this,' and she said, 'It'll be just a minute.'"

The 72-year-old said lipstick is really the only cosmetic she uses. She said she was talked into buying hundreds of dollars by that Vine Vera representative who approached her. 

"I spent $875.61," she said.

Nearly $900 in cosmetics? Kurtz says she can't believe she did it.

"They're pressuring the public to purchase their product," she said.

Good salesmanship or just buyer's remorse? It depends on whom you ask.

Kurtz said she wound up buying nearly a dozen different skin care products from the Vine Vera kiosk. She later found those products online for a fraction of what she paid.

"This can sells for $200 but you can get it on Amazon for $8.47," she said as she showed us some of what she bought.

That's nearly 95 percent cheaper, and it doesn't stop there. Kurtz looked up other products she purchased.

Vine Vera sells a night cream for $48 on its website, but the same product goes for $8.39 on Amazon.com.   

How about this? Vine Vera sells a wrinkle reducer for $700, but you can find the exact same product on Amazon for $180.19 -- a difference of more than $500.

Back at the Vine Vera kiosk, our undercover producer listened closely to the saleswoman's pitch. She declined the saleswoman's offer -- $900 in products for only $200. 3 On Your Side emailed Vine Vera's parent company about the huge price difference between what it sells at its kiosks versus the same -- much cheaper products -- online.

"We do not own or operate any retail locations," reads the company's response. "This location is owned by a third party and independent re-seller." 

In other words, the kiosk can sell the Vine Vera products for whatever that owner wants if consumers are willing to buy them.

As for Kurtz, she wishes she just had kept on walking that day she was approached by the Vine Vera saleswoman and hopes other consumers learn from her mistake. 

"I feel like they did single me out because I was an older person," she said.

3 On Your Side reiterates that companies can ask for any amount they want and in this case, nothing illegal was done. As a consumer, you have the right to say no, and keep moving.

Copyright 2016 KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


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Gary HarperGary Harper is the senior consumer and investigative reporter for 3 On Your Side at KTVK-TV.

Click to learn more about Gary.

Gary Harper
3 On Your Side

With more than 20 years of television experience, Gary has established himself as a leader in the industry when it comes to assisting viewers and resolving their consumer-related issues. His passion and enthusiasm have helped him earn an Emmy for Best Consumer Reporter from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He’s also garnered several Emmy nominations

He has negotiated resolutions with companies of all sizes, including some of the biggest corporations in the nation.

Gary has successfully recouped more than $1 million for viewers around the state, making 3 On Your Side one of the most popular segments on KTVK and the station's Web site.

He's best known for investigating and confronting unscrupulous contractors. In fact, many of his news reports have led to police investigations and jail time for those who were caught. Viewers, as well as the companies and people he investigates, regard him as consistently being thorough and fair.

Gary has been with KTVK-TV since 1997. Prior to his arrival in Phoenix, he worked for WZZM-TV in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he was as an anchor and reporter.

Gary is from Chicago, but launched his television career in Lubbock, Texas, after earning a broadcast journalism degree from Texas Tech University. Following his graduation, he was quickly hired by KLBK-TV in Lubbock, where he enterprised and broke numerous exclusive reports. His aggressive reporting in Texas helped garner him Best Reporter by the Associated Press.

Gary has been married since 1994 and is the proud father of two sons. When he's not helping viewers, Gary is busy catching up on his favorite college and professional football teams as well as cheering on his beloved Texas Tech Red Raiders.

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