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Old 06-12-2018, 12:44 PM   #1
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Beware of Unethical Beauty Centre

I am writing this on behalf of a close friend who recently became the victim of Dore Aesthetics' unscrupulous business practice.

My friend responded to their advertisement promoting a 'free trial' beauty treatment. They had never from the outset intended to provide any free trial session as they claimed. Because once my friend arrived at their premises, their sales staff began to aggressively market their beauty package at a steep cost. That 'free trial' which they advertised, was only meant to be included as an additional free treatment session AFTER a customer has purchased their package. My friend was quoted a figure of almost $5K for a package. When my friend declined, explaining that it was too expensive for her, the sales staff told her she will seek her manager's approval for a discount. After less than a minute, she came back with a figure of $3K plus. My friend continued to decline. But the sales staff persisted in her sales pitch and refused to let my friend go. The price was eventually reduced to $2K plus. By this time, my friend was already starting to feel uneasy with their hard-selling antics, and said no. The sales staff still persisted and suggested setting up an instalment plan for my friend if she couldn't afford to pay immediately (by this time my friend was getting rather stressed up). Suffice to say that my friend managed to get out of the situation without burning a hole in her pocket.

According to my friend, that whole unpleasant experience which lasted almost an hour left her feeling extremely upset. And all she wanted was to post a review narrating a true account of her experience on Yelp (an online platform to post reviews of businesses), to warn other unsuspecting members of the public. But you know what? She was bullied into silence by Dore Aesthetics. Recently she received a letter from Dore Aesthetics threatening legal action for defamation if she didn't immediately remove her negative review of Dore Aesthetics posted on Yelp. My friend is just a lady with simple means, who simply couldn't afford the time and money to be dragged into a legal suit against a company with the means and financial resources to do so. You can say it's a 'David and Goliath' battle, which my friend decided not to pursue and thus yielded to their unreasonable request, albeit with much indignance.

When my friend returned to Yelp to remove her review, she noticed that many other negative reviews of Dore Aesthetics which she had previously read, had also disappeared mysteriously. We believe that these other reviewers were also threatened with legal action and thus bullied into silence. Instead there were many more positive reviews pouring in.

When my friend confided in me, she did so not intending for me to write this as she wanted to let the matter rest and to move on with life. But i felt such a strong sense of injustice arising from this whole incident that i feel compelled to share my friend's experience and also to warn the public of such unethical businesses.

Sure, one can say there's no 'free lunch' in this world. Fair enough. But Dore Aesthetics shouldn't have advertised such a misleading representation. If you had intended that customers pay for the package before being able to enjoy a free treatment session, then you should have advertised as 'Free Treatment included with package' or 'Complementary Free Treatment'. That way, customers can discern and make an informed decision, and not waste time making their way down to Dore Aesthetics only to be told otherwise. I know of some other beauty businesses that practise this - being upfront in their advertisements that free treatment comes only with the package and not as a trial.

But If Dore Aesthetics had promoted a 'Free Trial', then it should have ensured that it understands the meaning of 'Trial' and live up to its words. Because 'Trial' means a try-out session before one decides to take up the package. Either Dore Aesthetics really did not understand the meaning of the word 'Trial' (which i doubt so), or Dore Aesthetics simply wants to gain an unfair advantage over its competitors in the industry. Because by promoting 'Free Trial', Dore Aesthetics gain potential customers' attention and hence interest to drop by its beauty centre to find out more. It's obvious to me that once these potential customers are lured to its business premises, Dore Aesthetics can then proceed to close the deal on them via aggressive, hard-selling tactics. Such trickery is just plain wrong to me.

They have since changed their name from 'Dore Aesthetics' to 'Dore Medical Clinic' on Yelp, and they have removed their 'Free Trial' promotion after all the negative reviews (which are subsequently all silenced and removed so the public doesn't know about it). But still, what scares me is how they can resort to such unscrupulous measures. Can you imagine - if you are a customer of theirs, who is dissatisfied with their treatment or services, but cannot share with others your experience? Isn't that very unfair?

From what I can see online now, Dore Aesthetics maintains a squeaky clean & 'reputable' image, concealing its ugly business practice in reality. Unsuspecting members of the public can only see the positive reviews of Dore Aesthetics without knowing the truth of what happened to some who have had unpleasant experiences (people who wish to share but cannot due to fear of legal repercussions). Many of the positive reviews you can see on Google and Yelp now, are posted by people who are affiliated with Dore Aesthetics (who are trying desperately to boost their ratings and image). You can tell that these are not authentic reviews aimed at speaking the truth. Some profiles were created immediately after a negative review was posted, and some pretended to post reviews on other businesses in order to reduce suspicion. However their reviews of these other businesses were short, simple one-liners, whereas in contrast, their positive reviews of Dore Aesthetics was lengthy and they took the extra time and effort to elaborate extensively on all the 'good things' about Dore Aesthetics. I have reported some of these bogus reviews, and fortunately enough, some were removed. But more kept coming in. Until I realized that this business will really stop at nothing and do whatever they can to appear as a respectable business (while stifling the voices of its victims).

Please do help us warn the public to be wary about such unscrupulous business and not to readily trust and believe in good reviews you read (there're many wolves in sheep's clothing out there).

Thank you very much!

Last edited by Preenie; 16-12-2018 at 03:11 PM..
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Old 06-12-2018, 12:58 PM   #2
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The first mistake is responding to a “free” trial for spas, beauty salons and hair growth. There are no free lunches.

When u fill up lucky draws even with legitimate establishment like NTUC and cold storage, AXS etc, all your data is being sent in to these kind of companies to take advantage of you.
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Old 09-12-2018, 11:25 AM   #3
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Wa thanks for the highlight.
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Old 10-12-2018, 11:17 AM   #4
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Went to Dore Aesthetics 1-2 years back and encountered exactly the same issue. But i was desperate to resolve my skin issue then. Wanted to try free trial end up they said the free trial has no real effect, only for me to feel the sensation only. So i signed up a small package with them. Initially they quoted me 3.8k for 10 sessions. I told them i have a budget. Then they ask their manager to talk to me and reduce it to $600 for 4 sessions to make it affordable for me. In the end i only paid up partial and stopped after one treatment cos it's too expensive.
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Old 10-12-2018, 11:58 AM   #5
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Guys, please remind your gf, wife, sis or any friends thinking of signing up with Dore Aesthetics to be careful. Be firm. Walk away if you have to if you are uncomfortable with their hardselling. Don't say yes or pay when you are in doubt or in a moment of being pressured.
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Old 10-12-2018, 04:13 PM   #6
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Went to Dore Aesthetics 1-2 years back and encountered exactly the same issue. But i was desperate to resolve my skin issue then. Wanted to try free trial end up they said the free trial has no real effect, only for me to feel the sensation only. So i signed up a small package with them. Initially they quoted me 3.8k for 10 sessions. I told them i have a budget. Then they ask their manager to talk to me and reduce it to $600 for 4 sessions to make it affordable for me. In the end i only paid up partial and stopped after one treatment cos it's too expensive.
lucky u didn't pay more than that... You see, they mark their prices up by a huge margin, so that later they can try to look like they have given you a big discount when they reduce the price for you. And if you never ask for discount, even better for them, they get to milk as much from you as they can!
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Old 12-12-2018, 07:57 PM   #7
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Thanks for the highlight.
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Old 15-12-2018, 11:44 AM   #8
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So your friend in the end got force to fork out the amount for it?? Why would your friend got Sue for just posting a normal bad review? Cos a lot also post bad review for other clinic or spa but doesn't get affect by such case similar to your friend. Anyway there is alot salon spa does such Hardsell, so your friend should know before signing up for such freebies. If price isn't affordable why don't she just walk off? cos i think if you keep sitting there continue listen and shy to reject them, end up writing bad review no point. previously also happen to me when i go to a beauty spa at taka. those malaysian staff was so hardsell that they even give me attitude if i reject them. But the spa are still there, doing well. And also my friend sign up from them and say they don't hardsell. So i belief it might be your friend unlucky to meet aggressive staff. And soon people will change business tactic when they know its not working or gonna affect their long term business. So i think it's be better give people way to change instead of spreading bad reputation. Anyway stay chill to handle case, as you say, your friend get sue after posting bad review yet you still post, don't you worry you get sue as well? This is my personal opinion or point of view.
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Old 15-12-2018, 02:17 PM   #9
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So your friend in the end got force to fork out the amount for it?? Why would your friend got Sue for just posting a normal bad review? Cos a lot also post bad review for other clinic or spa but doesn't get affect by such case similar to your friend. Anyway there is alot salon spa does such Hardsell, so your friend should know before signing up for such freebies. If price isn't affordable why don't she just walk off? cos i think if you keep sitting there continue listen and shy to reject them, end up writing bad review no point. previously also happen to me when i go to a beauty spa at taka. those malaysian staff was so hardsell that they even give me attitude if i reject them. But the spa are still there, doing well. And also my friend sign up from them and say they don't hardsell. So i belief it might be your friend unlucky to meet aggressive staff. And soon people will change business tactic when they know its not working or gonna affect their long term business. So i think it's be better give people way to change instead of spreading bad reputation. Anyway stay chill to handle case, as you say, your friend get sue after posting bad review yet you still post, don't you worry you get sue as well? This is my personal opinion or point of view.

My friend is so traumatized she doesn't even dare post or talk about it anymore. But i feel very angry and unfair for her.
You can choose to believe or not to believe me. It's ok. I am not doing this out of malice to intentionally hurt other's reputation. This whole incident really happened this way. But my friend cannot talk and share about it. It's so unfair. I just hope to share her experience so that others will not have to go through what she did. Take a look at the number of good versus bad reviews of Dore online. Most of the bad reviews have been removed by the authors. We suspect that they met the same fate as my friend.

I think Dore should reflect on its business tactics from now on. I mean if you have unhappy customers writing bad reviews of you, the solution shouldn't be to just shut people up but to reflect what went wrong and improve from there. Many customers of other businesses also write negative reviews without being threatened to be sued. People are unhappy for a reason and if you take away their ability to share, it's oppression.

I just hope to advise people to be careful and exercise jugment. When something looks too good to be true, you must tread with caution. This advice is not just applicable to Dore, it applies for any business entity you are dealing with. And i agree with you about what you said, to stand very firm. Walk away if you are not comfortable. I m sure after this incident my friend has learnt her lesson not to be so gullible.
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Old 15-12-2018, 02:34 PM   #10
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Look at these Google Maps screenshots were taken on 15 Dec 2018. Look at the dates and timing, and posting interval



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Old 15-12-2018, 11:35 PM   #11
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My friend is so traumatized she doesn't even dare post or talk about it anymore. But i feel very angry and unfair for her.
You can choose to believe or not to believe me. It's ok. I am not doing this out of malice to intentionally hurt other's reputation. This whole incident really happened this way. But my friend cannot talk and share about it. It's so unfair. I just hope to share her experience so that others will not have to go through what she did. Take a look at the number of good versus bad reviews of Dore online. Most of the bad reviews have been removed by the authors. We suspect that they met the same fate as my friend.

I think Dore should reflect on its business tactics from now on. I mean if you have unhappy customers writing bad reviews of you, the solution shouldn't be to just shut people up but to reflect what went wrong and improve from there. Many customers of other businesses also write negative reviews without being threatened to be sued. People are unhappy for a reason and if you take away their ability to share, it's oppression.

I just hope to advise people to be careful and exercise jugment. When something looks too good to be true, you must tread with caution. This advice is not just applicable to Dore, it applies for any business entity you are dealing with. And i agree with you about what you said, to stand very firm. Walk away if you are not comfortable. I m sure after this incident my friend has learnt her lesson not to be so gullible.
Yes u can stand our for your friend. But what if you get sue? Do you think your friend will stand out back for you just like what you do? Don't be silly. If you feel injustice no point posting in diff forum. And u already say cos they take away the bad review, no point la. If you make a mistake I belief u also want people forgive right? Anyway, everywhere sure got bad review. Even Chanel boutique also got people talk bad about them or even compare the quality with Hermes. But still people buy. Cos some people might feels OK for them and even go for result and qualities. I mean since u already want to help your friend why don't you go to the clinic and talk upfront instead? No point keyboard warrior. Anyway look well, saw the screenshot reviews that leekyan posted. =.=
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Old 16-12-2018, 12:06 AM   #12
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Yes u can stand our for your friend. But what if you get sue? Do you think your friend will stand out back for you just like what you do? Don't be silly. If you feel injustice no point posting in diff forum. And u already say cos they take away the bad review, no point la. If you make a mistake I belief u also want people forgive right? Anyway, everywhere sure got bad review. Even Chanel boutique also got people talk bad about them or even compare the quality with Hermes. But still people buy. Cos some people might feels OK for them and even go for result and qualities. I mean since u already want to help your friend why don't you go to the clinic and talk upfront instead? No point keyboard warrior. Anyway look well, saw the screenshot reviews that leekyan posted. =.=
Yes if I made a mistake and I hope for people to forgive me, I will apologize. But Dore never did that. Instead they sent a threatening letter. If they had just apologized with humility or try to make amends, I m sure my friend will have willingly taken down her post.

Ok, if my friend or i went down to the clinic, so what? You don't even know if these people wants to talk things over peacefully. If they had wanted to make amends or talk things out peacefully, they won't have threatened my friend in the first place.

It's not even about the quality or results that I m talking about. It's how they deal with their unhappy customers. Unhappy cannot even share, for fear of being sued.

You don't seem to get the point that leekyan is driving at. Never mind. I m sure others will be able to.

If you are the type who doesn't stand up for your good friend and you think it's silly to do so, i have nothing to say. You can ask why am I even doing this.... Because of the anguish and distress they caused to my friend. She's been so traumatized by this whole incident. It breaks my heart, really. She's someone I care about alot.
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Last edited by Preenie; 17-12-2018 at 12:17 PM..
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Old 18-12-2018, 08:51 AM   #13
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Yes u can stand our for your friend. But what if you get sue? Do you think your friend will stand out back for you just like what you do? Don't be silly. If you feel injustice no point posting in diff forum. And u already say cos they take away the bad review, no point la. If you make a mistake I belief u also want people forgive right? Anyway, everywhere sure got bad review. Even Chanel boutique also got people talk bad about them or even compare the quality with Hermes. But still people buy. Cos some people might feels OK for them and even go for result and qualities. I mean since u already want to help your friend why don't you go to the clinic and talk upfront instead? No point keyboard warrior. Anyway look well, saw the screenshot reviews that leekyan posted. =.=
This type of co will not just listen if u go down to their place and argue with them. Their tactics should be known by more people so that they cannot hide behind the lawyer letter threat.
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Old 18-12-2018, 08:53 AM   #14
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Thank you for the notes. Yeah, so many around now and they get to enter the market somehow.
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Old 18-12-2018, 09:22 AM   #15
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This type of co will not just listen if u go down to their place and argue with them. Their tactics should be known by more people so that they cannot hide behind the lawyer letter threat.
Well said, totally agree!
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