Wednesday, March 9, 2016

(UPDATED) Here's What Happens When Your Sephora Flash Subscription Expires

Let me back up for a minute and explain Sephora Flash in case you're new to this program. For $10 per year, you can enroll in Sephora Flash HERE and receive free 2-day shipping on all orders, no minimum required, for an entire year. The subscription starts the moment you enroll, meaning that when you purchase Sephora Flash, you will receive free shipping on that order if you order anything else. This subscription pays for itself after just two orders, so if you order more than twice from Sephora.com in a given year, you are saving money with Sephora Flash. I honestly can't think of a single reason why you should't subscribe, unless you only plan to order from Sephora once or twice a year!

OK, so some of you had mentioned that you thought you were automatically charged for your renewal when your subscription expired. So I want to tell you that I personally received the above email a few days ago, plus an earlier "heads-up" email a few weeks ago, alerting me that my subscription was about to expire.

UPDATE: Thanks so much to reader Arathael for the comment below, alerting me to the fine print in these reminder emails. Here's that info:

Sephora FLASH Program Details
Your 12-month subscription will last through (your “Renewal Date”), and you will receive unlimited 2-day shipping on every order. 
At the end of your subscription, the credit card on file will be billed the then current rate to automatically renew your subscription for next year. If you do not wish to renew your subscription, you must cancel on or before your Renewal Date. 
To do this, update your account online, call 1-877-SEPHORA or email customerservice@sephora.com to indicate that you wish to cancel your automatic renewal.
You will receive an email from Sephora at least 30 days prior to your Cancellation Date at the email address we have on file, reminding you that you can cancel and advise you of any changes to the Sephora FLASH program terms. 
If you registered for FLASH as a VIB Rouge member or if you purchased Sephora FLASH using Apple Pay, Gift Card or Store Credit, your membership will terminate 12 months from the date of your initial enrollment. 

I always read the fine print in emails, but I was so concerned about re-enrolling (I HATE paying for shipping) that I didn't even scroll down to see that there was fine print! So thank you, Arathael, for taking the time to let me know that I was missing this portion of the email. So YES, you will be automatically charged unless you cancel.

I hope this helps and if you have any questions, I'll do my best to try and answer them below!
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25 comments

  1. I'm also getting these emails about Sephora Flash subscription ending, but in small print at the bottom it says "At the end of your subscription, the credit card on file will be billed the then current rate to automatically renew your subscription for next year. If you do not wish to renew your subscription, you must cancel on or before your Renewal Date." Then it goes on about how to cancel, getting these emails 30 days in advance, etc. I don't know why they are providing conflicting information in the email, suggesting you need to renew, then stating it will auto renew and you are responsible for canceling.

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    1. Oh my gosh, THANK YOU, Arathael! I usually read the fine print on EVERYTHING, but for this I panicked and immediately re-enrolled when I got my last email (I order too frequently to have to pay for shipping!). Aaaaah, I so appreciate you telling me! I'll update my post right away!

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    2. Sorry for the confusion!! I've responded to The Epicurean below about the January 13, 2016 date they mentioned. I can also confirm I have expired. I had my last warning email last night that I was expiring today. I happened to place an order last night and it automatically reflected the Flash shipping option. Now when I put something in the cart and pretend to check out, it says I'm X dollars away from free shipping, and if I proceed with checking out a little further, it doesn't show Flash option on Delivery options screen (this is via mobile app on iphone).

      I think since I've placed two orders recently, I will just wait til my next order and add it then, so my year will start at that time. It doesn't seem to be such a hidden secret anymore...so hopefully that wouldn't be an issue to do it that way.

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  2. Perfect timing! Mine expires in April and I was worried it would auto-renew, so I marked the date in my calendar and have been stalking Sephora for one last awesome weekly special. Flash has been great but I nearly fainted when I looked at my purchase history with Flash. A great total savings equals a scary total amount spent!

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    1. Oh no! I'm guessing you read this blog post before my update. Please see my update above--this IS an auto-renew! But you will receive two reminder emails from Sephora BEFORE you're charged for another year, so you will definitely have time to cancel before you see any charges. I hope this helps!

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    2. I think the auto-renew is new. According to the T/C:

      f you registered for FLASH prior to January 13, 2016, if you registered for FLASH as a VIB Rouge member or if you purchased Sephora FLASH using Apple Pay, Gift Card or Store Credit, your membership will terminate 12 months from the date of your initial enrollment.

      By that, it looks like those of us who bought it last year won't be auto-renewed.

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    3. I think you're right that auto renewal is new.... This Flash FAQs page: http://www.sephora.com/faqs-flash?mediaId=18600065 describes it as:

      Sephora FLASH FAQs

      SEPHORA FLASH IS A NON-REFUNDABLE SUBSCRIPTION SERVICE THAT AUTOMATICALLY RENEWS AT THE END OF EVERY 12 MONTH SUBSCRIPTION PERIOD UNLESS YOU CANCEL.


      Do I have to renew my membership every year?

      If you register for Flash on or after January 13, 2016, your membership automatically renews at the end of 12 months from your registration date (at the then current rate) unless you notify us before your renewal date that you wish to cancel. You can cancel your auto-renewal by calling 1-877-SEPHORA, by sending an email to customerservice@sephora.com or by going to the My Account page.

      Purchases of Sephora FLASH paid for by Apple Pay, Gift Card or Store Credit are not subject to auto-renewal and your subscription will end on the first anniversary of your subscription.


      So those of us who enrolled before that date apparently have to manually re-enroll, then we'd be auto-renewed going forward. I think they think they are being clear, but the email had conflicting information, and it'd be nice if the FAQ also stated clearly that if you were enrolled before that date you would have to manually re-enroll since it would expire, etc etc. Since obviously we are all getting confused.

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    4. Thank you for that update Arathael! I was confused when I went to the site and wasn't still enrolled, checked my bank account and nothing there ever.

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    5. Ahhhh...just read this and now my comment is terribly redundant. Oops! <3

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    6. Not at all! Since I was putting off re-enrolling, I didn't know now there would be auto-renewal prompt this time around. So that is good to know! :)

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  3. I was subscribed from August 29th 2013-August 29th 2014 and wasn't auto-renewed. Also, my current flash subscription ends on March 25th and I haven't received any reminder emails or anything. This must be for people who signed up AFTER they instated the auto-renewal policy.

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    1. Mine was not auto renewed either nor did I get a reminder! Wonder if that is a new thing from 2016 on????

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  4. Excellent info and perfect timing since mines expires today.

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  5. I wish Ulta had Flash Shipping too, I hate having to spend money, or reach a minimum, for shipping. At the very least, they should offer free shipping for platinum members. Although, if they did, it would mean that I would spend as much as I do at Sephora! Double edged swords...

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    1. Me too!! I would probably stop shopping at Sephora if that were the case. Ulta's rewards program is way better.

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    2. I completely agree, the nearest Ulta is at least 30 min away and I never buy anything from them online because you have to pay for shipping and then it takes forever.

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  6. Does anyone know what happens if you enrolled but then hit Rouge later on, which provides free shipping?

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    1. I believe you would just be out $10. I doubt you would get a refund.

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  7. you should be able to enroll in flash shipping for free then

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  8. I signed up a year ago exact. I suppose possibly due to the program's Terms Of Use at that time, I did NOT get auto renewed. Mine flat out expired. THIS time, when I signed up, I was prompted to agree to auto-renew. I'm guessing most people who jumped on board in early 2015 do not have to worry about being auto-renewed per their original agreement.

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    1. Ah that is good to know! I think we have all the pieces to the puzzle now, they changed it up!

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  9. My Flash shipping expired today and I didn't get automatically charged for a renewal. I think maybe it has to do with what mctina said, I signed up pretty shortly after they first offered it so I didn't have the auto-renew option tacked onto my subscription.

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  10. Hi! It just so happens that my subscription expired yesterday. (Even though I signed up in January 2015) Anyway, my sub didn't auto-renew. When I go to Sephora.com, where it used to say "Flash Shipping," it now says "Join Flash." So I think it depends on when you originally signed up. I'm going to re-enroll before my next order though. FOR SURE!

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  11. Hi so I was also confused about this and I called Sephora. Your subscription will only auto renew if you purchased Flash shipping on or after January 13, 2016. So if you purchased Flash shipping before that date, your Flash shipping will just expire and not auto renew. This is also stated in the terms and conditions for Flash shipping on the Sephora website under "membership auto renewal" (http://www.sephora.com/flash-terms-conditions)

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  12. Mine expired on the 9th and I ordered an expensive serum on the 8th with flash shipping and I received it yesterday and they sent me the wrong item, some lip liner. Still waiting for an email response... their phone line is always busy.

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