A member of our Complaint Singapore Facebook Group, wrote a very long complaint about an unethical beauty centre along Bencoolen Street, inside “The Bencoolen” building.
In the post, she shared the sly tactics used by the said beauty centre in securing signed consent from her elderly mother prior treatment started, and also the painful ordeal her mother went through during and after the treatment, not forgetting the exorbitant charges by the beauty centre too!
Below is the original Facebook post screenshot:
For easier reading, the text reproduction of the complaint is here:
I want to complain what happened to me and my mum a few days ago. Bear with me. I want to report but mum said let it go. Let karma hits them. But I need to let it out of my chest.
I’m not the sort who confront people and also not the sort to say bad things about FT coming here to make money. It’s ok. Because I got to think there might be a reason why they traveled so far to come here. And also not the type to wish anybody to lose their jobs because its their rice bowls. But what happened recently… wah… Chinese China ah… No wonder most of us do not like you.
On Tuesday afternoon, (this what my mum told me) my mum was alone walking at Bencoolen street when she was approached by a sweet Chinese lady, and pointed at my mum’s face, (in Chinese accent, broken English) she can get rid of those spots on the face for $5 each. (That will be a relevant later) My mum being gullible type, she thought one only and asked if 2 will be $10. The Chinese lady said yes. So my mum followed her to a “shop” (this will be relevant later too).
The Chinese lady asked her to lie down, took off the tudung and immediately asked her to sign a form. My mum is almost 70, eyesight needs glasses. She said to me the lady just circled the $5 and asked her to sign. I was like maybe its a declaration form to see if her health is fine for this type of services.
Then immediately took a needle and start poking fast. As she was poking, she counted… a lot.
My mum was startled, taken aback and screamed to stop. But the lady continue. She did right side of her face – 100 times. Then she moved to the forehead and did the same until my mum couldn’t tahan and moved her hand and asked to stop. Forehead 80 pokes.
Mum’s face was oozing blood and was red all over. She had an appointment that evening and the next day.
She asked how much 100 + 80 pokes = 180, 180 x $5 = $900. They added cream which costs fucking $88! Total $988!!!!!
She went home straight. I was of course angry money was gone like that because right now I’m not financially secure. She’s not working and rely on her kids to give her. But then looking at her face, I was like, those people going to get it from me. I asked my mum the receipt. It was just a handwritten receipt, like the ones you buy furniture at neighbourhood shop, the ones with carbon paper underneath with the words *Remove* and *Cream* WTF?!
So I called the place the next day, I asked for the owner. “Owner not here.” I asked sternly again. “Wait ah” Hang up. Called again. Another lady, broken English, Chinese accent too. “Owner not here.”
“I need to talk to someone urgently. Give me the number”
“Here’s the number but she don’t speak English alot”
I was like shit how to confront, I texted her. She understand my *I tried-as-basic-as-possible” English though. I said I’m coming down at 630pm.
It was at The Bencoolen. 2nd floor. To go that floor there’s a hidden lift/staircase. And it isn’t a normal shop front. There are doors all around carpark level 2. Why would my mum go to a place like this. Brought my hubs so I can have a witness and dragged me if I go too far.
Opened the door and the “shop” was decked with Chinese God statues and at the end was a reception. 2 Chinese ladies were there. I went in and I didn’t smile. “I want to speak to the owner”
“Owner not here.” WTF?!
I told them someone gave me the number to talk to someone I assume its the owner. One of them asked me why. I whipped out my phone and showed a photo of my mum with her bloody right side face. Then smile so sweetly, “Oh it’s like that.1 week can heal.” I told her off it’s not because whether how long it can heal but the practices they are doing. She asked me to wait at the waiting room. I said I wait outside.
I made a phonecall to the number they gave me earlier and said I’m waiting outside. A senior staff (not the owner as I assumed) opened the door, and kept insisting I come in. I said no. “No, no, you come in.” Hubs said to me outside or else they might lock you in. I demanded to speak outside. She walked out with another Chinese lady.
Now this is where the chicken and duck talk. I told her my concerns in the simplest English I can. I asked the following questions
1) My mum is almost 70 yo. You poke poke, did you tell her that you are using needle? She has HBP. What if all of the sudden something bad happened to her?
2) When my mum screamed to stop, why didn’t you stop?
3) Did you tell her the side effects after poking? Did you tell her there will be scarring?
Answer, in the sweetest tone and in the sweetest smile.
“No no, no side effects.” Those were the only words they said to me most of the time. The rest were stuttering between English and Chinese. They even showed me the paper my mum signed, and it was not a declaration form if her health is fine. It’s just a A4 paper typed in low quality, like the ink was spreading the paper in English and Chinese that she agreed to do it for $5 each. But what irked me more was that, she said my mum only did half the face. So someone wrote clumsily on that paper AFTER my mum signed.
I did screamed at them because this practice is unethical. They did not feel guilty at all. All they said, “Don’t worry, will heal in 1 week. I screamed, “She has appointment yesterday and today. Do you think she wants to walk around looking like a zombie? It’s alright for her to do the treatment but you should have told her there will be scarring for the next 1 week, are you ok with it. Not just anyhow poke.” From then on I really wished the “shop” close and they go back to China.
Its been 4 days, her scarring is not looking less visible. Not using that fucking $88 cream.
If you want to know, the place has no website, no FB.
It’s call Ruby Beauty Centre
180 Bencoolen Street #02-08. Keep a distance from that place!
Here are some of comments in regards to the said complaint:
Do you think the tactics used by the beauty centre is wrong?
What can the complainant do to seek justice against the errant beauty centre?