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How to Get Free Makeup Samples and PR Packages From Companies

Updated on April 11, 2017
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Susan is a free product geek and loves writing about her experiences with receiving free products. She's a tech nerd too.

How to Get Makeup Companies to Send You Free Stuff

Over the past few months, I have encountered the "$39 Experiment," and other creative efforts to get free makeup. Thousands of people are reporting great results by contacting companies directly. They report that you don't have to participate in spammy surveys or websites to receive samples. You don't even have to spend one penny writing to them either. Email and online forms work!

Here's how to write your letter or email to convince a company to send you samples and PR packages. These techniques work. The chances of you receiving samples is relatively high, provided you know who to write to. I have written to many companies and many sent me free samples and full-sized products. You can also get a great selection of travel-size products this way.

This kind of activity has always been kept a secret. Only a lucky few who know that you can get free makeup get results.

I am here to expose the truths and how to best tackle the letter!

Asking for free samples is a great way to get travel-sized products.
Asking for free samples is a great way to get travel-sized products.

What You'll Need to Get Free Makeup Sent to You

The easiest and best way to receive free samples is to write to the company directly. There is no need to fill out dodgy surveys or questionnaires, which usually amount to nothing and should be avoided. Here is a step by step overview of what to do:

  1. Make a list of the companies you're interested in.
  2. Find their addresses (email or postal) on the company website.
  3. Write out your email/letter (we'll discuss this in detail below).
  4. Send it and wait for the mail to come!
  5. Special tips for receiving PR packages are included below.

Examples of Products You May Receive

Category
Examples of Companies
What You Might Receive
Skincare
Juara, REN, DermOrganic
Samples/full sized products of skincare products including moisturisers, cleansers or hand cream.
Makeup
Bare Minerals
Eye shadows, lipstick/lipgloss.
Haircare
DermOrganic, Living Proof
Any haircare products including shampoo and conditioners, sample sized or full sized.
Perfume
Lacoste and Boss
Perfume companies almost always have plenty of samples to send for free.

It's easy to write to companies for free products. This guide will teach you how to write the email or letter and which companies to contact.

1. Decide Who to Contact

Whether you want the samples only for personal use, to try in your work as a makeup artist, or to review on your beauty blog, the first step to decide which companies you want to contact. There are literally hundreds of companies across the world that could potentially send you samples, so don't feel limited.

I have written to about 15 companies and I will mention the ones that sent me free samples (and the ones that didn't!). Since many companies simply won't respond at all, make sure you have a few on your list so you get some results!

For inspiration, take a look at some cosmetics or personal care products in your home. Some companies I recommend writing to are:

  • Carmex - Known to send samples in the U.S.
  • Burts Bees - May send samples in the U.S.
  • DermOrganic - Sends lots of samples.
  • REN - Sends samples.
  • Juara - Sends samples sometimes.
  • Many of the brands featured in the photos here send samples!

2. Find the Address

Once you have an idea of the companies you would like to contact, it is time to search for the addresses. The best way to do so is to visit the company website. Look for a "Contact Us" or "Help" or "About Us" link at the top or bottom of the homepage. That's usually where you'll find all the details you need.

Some companies may only provide an email address. Others may provide postal mailing addresses, and still others require you to fill out a form to contact customer service. Any of these methods can work.

Make sure to choose the correct email address. Some companies have different emails for technical support and other departments. Look for "customer service," "media relations," or "public relations."

3. What to Write in a Letter

The most important part of this process is to write an excellent letter. You want to make the company think, "Wow, this is a really loyal customer!" or "We could get some amazing publicity from this blogger!" It sounds difficult, but here are some ideas to get you started writing a professional and convincing letter or email.

Note: I believe in giving compliments to the company. Only after that do I ask for free samples. This method works a lot better than the complaint route (unless you have a legit complaint and proof of purchase).

  1. Dear Sir/Madam, A polite and formal greeting works best.
  2. Introduction Say that you are writing to tell them what a great range of products they have. Give many compliments about their company, from how their products always work wonders on your skin to how their products deliver each time. If their cleanser or eye shadow is your favorite, now is your chance to tell them what you think. They really do value our (the consumers) opinions.
  3. Personal experience Include an experience that you had with their cosmetics. It could be how glossy your hair is after using their shampoo or how their skin cream cleared up the dry skin on your hand. This adds more credibility and personality to the letter.
  4. Ask for samples Do not ask bluntly. This it does not work. Mention that your hairdresser recommended their shampoo range or that you want to "try before you buy" and see which one works best on you.
  5. Skin or hair type Some companies will need to know your skin type/condition so they know which samples to send. If you have sensitive skin, be sure to mention this.
  6. Your address Don't forget this!
  7. Gratitude Say thank you for taking the time to read your letter and that you would be so grateful if they send you samples. Say that you are looking forward to their response.
  8. Sign off "Yours faithfully," "Kind Regards," or "Best Wishes."

A Sample Email or Online Form Message

Here is a sample email to a fictional skincare company. You can use this template for any personal care company you write to or to fill out an online request form.

Dear Sir/Madam,

I am a dedicated fan of your company because I love the way that you combine such pure techniques with science to create wonderful skincare products! I absolutely adore your products because they always deliver what I need, whether it is to give my skin more vitality or to cleanse. Each product always delivers, I value your experience in creating such stunning products each and every time.

A friend recently recommended that I try out some of your bath and skincare products. I would love to try some products out before I buy, to see which work best on me and which I love using.

Could you please send me some samples from your skincare or bath products ranges? I would be so grateful if you could. I would be very happy with any samples at all. My address is ___ Thank you! I am looking forward to trying them out!

Yours faithfully,

Your name

Requesting Free Makeup From Stores

Your favorite cosmetics store may also be a source of free samples. Let the employees know how much you enjoy their products! Compliments and positive feedback go a long way to convincing people to be generous!

Why Do Companies Send Samples Anyway?

Most blogs and websites have reported that they have received the most free samples from cosmetics and makeup companies. Why is this?

  1. Manufacturing samples and even full-sized cosmetics is relatively cheap for the company, so they can easily afford to send samples to those that ask.
  2. You may want to try out the latest product of theirs, but ask for a sample to "try before you buy." If you like the sample, chances are you will probably buy the product afterwards and even recommend it to family and friends. This is what the company is banking on.
  3. Cosmetic companies generally include samples of their latest products when you order online and purchase some items. These samples are stocked and ready to be shipped if someone writes asking to try out a couple of their products.
  4. Companies send PR packages to artists and bloggers when there is a new season launch. They want people to know about new products. They may also be holding a blogging event for artists and bloggers who review products. This is a key way for companies to promote their goods.

If you ever try writing to companies for free stuff, I would recommend writing to cosmetics/personal care companies because they are the most likely to send samples.

Makeup artists and bloggers who review products can receive generous PR packages from companies, particularly when there is a new line launched.
Makeup artists and bloggers who review products can receive generous PR packages from companies, particularly when there is a new line launched.

What to Write if You Want a PR Package

If you are a beauty blogger, makeup reviewer, or makeup artist looking for free samples, you will get better results from companies if you convince them that you're likely to send more business their way.

Here are some tips to getting a free PR package in the mail:

  1. Establish your credibility by including the URL of your site, business, or YouTube channel, if you have one.
  2. Ask or find out whether the company is launching a new line of products. They will be more likely to send samples if they are trying to spread the word about new items.
  3. Ask about any blogger events the company is holding or participating in. Makeup bloggers and artists usually receive free samples at these events.
  4. Ask them about what they require for "credits." This is when a magazine reviews a product and mentions it by name. Some companies are particular about where they are credited. This question will boost your credibility and may get you more samples.
  5. If you have done makeup at an event, contact the makeup manufacturer and include event images. Ask them whether you can thank them for providing the makeup (another way of asking them to send you more!).

Most companies will send free samples, but not all, so be sure to contact several companies.
Most companies will send free samples, but not all, so be sure to contact several companies.

Phrases to Include

If you are feeling a little stuck on what to write, here are some phrases you can use. You can alter this language by filling in the blanks or changing the words to match your style and according to the product you are talking about.

Introduction:

  • I am writing to say how much I adore your skincare/makeup products.
  • I believe that ___ creates the finest hair/skin products in the world.
  • I am such a fan of your company!
  • It is nice to know that your products will always deliver every time.
  • My personal favourite is the ___. It's my savior! Thanks to this amazing product, my skin glows so radiantly!
  • I like the way that your company combines natural botanicals with science to create a truly powerful yet organic and natural product.

Personal experience:

  • My friends and family always say how soft my hair is when I use your shampoo!
  • My skin is usually dull and dry, but after using your cleanser it regains its youthful self!
  • I use ___ every day. Without it, I could not survive!

Asking for Samples:

  • My hairdresser recently recommended that I should try out your shampoo range because it works most effectively with my hair type. I would love to try some of the hair products in your range before I buy. Thank you!
  • I would love to sample some of your other products.
  • I would like to try out some of your products just to see which work best on my skin/hair.

4. Send it Off!

The final step is to send your letter or email to the company of your choice. Make sure to send it to the correct address and department. Emails or letters that are sent to the wrong department in customer service are more likely to be discarded than forwarded to the relevant department.

What to Expect

You will likely have to wait for a couple of days for a response via email and another two weeks for your samples to be posted. Sometimes it can take up to two months for any response at all, so be patient. I usually give up after a week, but it really varies depending upon the company.

The majority of companies send free samples, since beauty and personal care have the most samples to give away. A positive and well-written letter is the key to success. For an approximate number, I would say that 1 in 2 beauty cosmetics will send samples. Perfume companies usually always send samples.

Would you like to write to a cosmetic company, right now?

See results

My Experiment

Just to show and prove that this method actually works, I followed in the footsteps of the $39 Experiment and wrote to a few companies. I will showcase my results.

DermOrganic: Talk about fantastic customer service! I wrote an email to them and after two hours, they replied immediately and said they would send samples. They were also pretty happy about my compliments too. A few days later, I received samples from them including products from their hair care range and skin care range plus a coupon. Nice!

Results List

Company
Response
What They Sent
DermOrganic
Yes!
Two sample boxes including their hair care range and skin care range worth $12. I also received a coupon too for 25% off my next purchase.
WeiEast
No
Nothing
REN
Yes!
Cleansing and moisturizing creams plus a facial mask.

I hope that you enjoyed reading this guide and that it will encourage you to try it too. Just try for yourself and see what results you can reap.

I appreciate any comments or questions! Thank you for reading!

© 2014 Susan W

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    • Jodah profile image

      John Hansen 3 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Very handy hub Susi10, though I probably wouldn't be writing to cosmetic and personal care companies (well maybe Boss). It is good advice for writing for samples on any type of product though. Voted up.

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      John - Thank you so much for the great comments and the read, I appreciate you giving your thoughts on this hub. I recommend that you try writing to perfume companies that have a men's category (such as Boss, as you mentioned or Lacoste). Perfume companies are well known to send many samples of their perfumes so you should give it a try.

      Thanks again!

    • FlourishAnyway profile image

      FlourishAnyway 3 years ago from USA

      This is a great way to try new products or to get travel sized products for brands you like. Way to go, Susan!

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Flourish - Thank you for the wonderful comments and for the read, I am glad that you liked reading this. :) I agree, it is definitely a good way to get travel sized products for any brands and to try out various products and see which you might buy again.

      I hope that many people will try this method, it isn't very popular but it should be in the future.

    • carrie Lee Night profile image

      Kept private 3 years ago from Northeast United States

      Voted useful and interesting :) I have sensitive skin and could use that in a letter to get that use before I buy, however if the products are expensive I would not ask for samples because it could tempt me to buy products that are not affordable. Love this hub, maybe will try it in the near future. Totally in when it comes to food products :) Have a wonderful week

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Carrie - Thank you so much for your kind and wonderful comments, I greatly appreciate them. Thank you for the votes too. :)

      Yes, you will get lots of samples if you state to the company that you have sensitive skin. I would recommend writing to DermOrganic and REN for samples, especially if you have sensitive skin. I just received more samples from REN today, I will be updating this hub today with pictures of what I received.

      Food companies are worth trying out, they love to send out samples and coupons so you could receive lots of products.

      Good luck on trying this out, if you have any questions, just ask me. Thanks again! Have a great day.

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Calhoun 3 years ago from Western NC

      This is really interesting! Actually, you gave me a great idea - I should write to some of the skincare companies to see if they have samples my husband could use: he has the driest skin, ever, and I'm always looking for that one "magical" product that will really alleviate his problem. Voted up and shared. :)

    • Nancy Owens profile image

      Nancy Owens 3 years ago from USA

      What a wonderful idea! I am going to bookmark this for future reference.

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Cyndi - Why thank you! I am very glad that you enjoyed reading this and that you have found use for it. You should definitely try to write to skincare companies for some samples, you would receive many! Companies always like to hear that you have a problem that you want to solve with their creams, your husband should get that "magical" product soon. Thanks for the share too!

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 3 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Nancy - Thank you so much for the great comments, I always appreciate them. I am glad that you are going to bookmark this too, hopefully you will find some good use for it. Best of luck on writing to some companies, I'm sure you'll be successful. :)

    • profile image

      Gigi 2 years ago

      WOW! What an amazing post. I used this and sent it to urban decay, clinique, estee lauder, e.l.f, and a bunch of other companies and got a free sample of urban decay's Naked 3 palette, got some free chubby sticks, free makeup brushes, and a bunch of other great products! This is a great way to expand my makeup collection and get some new skincare as well! Thanks so much for the article!

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 2 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Gigi- Thank you so much for the fantastic comments!

      I'm thrilled that you received so many free makeup products. Free chubby sticks? Free brushes? Wow, congrats to you! :-)

    • profile image

      Annoyed1 2 years ago

      You may want to caution people about "Cutting and Pasting". I work for a company that provides free samples to almost anybody who asks. But when I get two identical messages 2 hours apart, lifted directly from this website, I am much less inclined to send samples. Please be aware that asking politely is far more effective than trying to sell me a story.

      Email 1-

      Dear Sir/Madam,

      I am a dedicated fan of your company because I love the way that you combine such pure techniques with science to create such wonderful products! I absolutely adore your products. Each product always delivers, I value your experience in creating such stunning products each and every time.

      I was recently recommended by a friend to try out some of your other products. I would love to try some products out before I buy and see which work best on my dog.

      Could you please send me some samples of some of your products? I would be so grateful if you could. I would be very happy with any samples at all. My address is XXXXXXXXX Thank you! I am looking forward to trying them out!

      Yours faithfully,

      XXXXXX

      Email 2- 2 hrs later, different sender

      Dear Sir/Madam,

      I am a dedicated fan of your company because I love the way that you combine such pure techniques with science to create such wonderful dog care products!

      I absolutely adore your products because they always deliver what I need, whether it is to give my dogs more vitality or to cleanse. Each product always delivers, I value your experience in creating such stunning products each and every time.

      I was recently recommended by a friend to try out some of your dog care products. I would love to try some products out before I buy and see which work best on me and which I love using.

      Could you please send me some samples of some of your products in the dog care or bath products ranges? I would be so grateful if you could. I would be very happy with any samples at all. My address isXXXXX Thank you! I am looking forward to trying them out!

      Just a thought.

    • Kristen Howe profile image

      Kristen Howe 2 years ago from Northeast Ohio

      Great tips once again, Susan W. I would give it a go sometime this spring. Thanks for sharing and voted up!

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 2 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Thanks for the fab comments and the vote up, Kristen! I'm really glad that you enjoyed reading this, after all - who doesn't love getting free makeup samples?

    • profile image

      nikyla 2 years ago

      what other companies gives out samples? also do they give out samples in england ? and what kind of things did you get from makeup comapanies?

      thank you so much

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 2 years ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Nikyla - Yeah, they give out samples in England (I'm pretty sure). I got samples such as 50ml samples, makeup testers and dispensable products. You should definitely give it a go!

    • profile image

      nikyla 2 years ago

      hi what makeup companys give out samples? mac? benefit? and do they email you back if they are giving you samples and do they ask for your address?

    • profile image

      Jalenchapin 23 months ago

      If I email them I hope u get free samples/full size makeup cosmetics

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 20 months ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Hi Krista! Thanks for trying it out, and for linking us to your blog. It looks great so far! Good luck and I'll be checking your blog regularly for more!

    • profile image

      Kayla14 16 months ago

      Hey Susi10

      Great article! Except I am still confused on what departments I should look at addressing my letters to. Can you give some tips on what (typical) departments I should address when writing a letter. In short how do I discover who the decision makers are when it comes to getting free samples?

      Thanks!

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 16 months ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Hi Kayla,

      Thanks for your fantastic comments. You should address the letters to the Customer Care department. In fact, any regular address to a company automatically leads to the Customer Care department anyways. They look after giving out samples/complaints, etc. So just address to their regular address and they will respond!

    • WhiteOak profile image

      Eva Thomas 16 months ago from Georgia

      Very good hub, thank you for writing it!

    • profile image

      Crystal 14 months ago

      Does this still work if you live in the UK?

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 14 months ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Crystal - Yep, it works in the UK too. Many UK companies give out free samples. Good luck!

    • profile image

      Darla 13 months ago

      I think Dermorganic doesn't send anymore. They might have been overwhelmed by requests

    • profile image

      Hannah 11 months ago

      It's very nice of you to share this information to the public. It's really a great help. Do you me asking if these companies delivers it worldwide?

    • profile image

      Salina 11 months ago

      This is great! I was wondering though as I am from the Caribbean, would I be likely to receive free samples?

    • profile image

      Mia Garza 11 months ago

      What email did you use to acces the bare minerals samples?

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 11 months ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Yes, you might be able to get samples worldwide. Thanks for asking! If you need more help, just ask!

    • profile image

      PnkLover 11 months ago

      Hi.. So i wanted to share my results with everyone. I wrote my own personal email to numerous companies, i followed your advice. Some of the companies I asked were BareMinerals, Urban Decay, Bobbi Brown, Juice Beauty, Too Faced, Tata Harper, Carols Daughter, Anne Marie Gianni, Ocean Mist, Murad, and a couple others. I mostly received a response email back and every single answer was no. I did not just come out and ask for samples either..i am a really good writer too so I know how to write. I spent allot of time on the letters. I just wanted to let everyone know that its most likely a waste of your time!

    • profile image

      hi 9 months ago

      do they deliver outside the home country like frOM UK TO tunisia

    • profile image

      Ashleigh 9 months ago

      I wrote to every company explaining I'm allergic to makeup and I wanted to purchase a full face of makeup,to let them know they could potentially have my business. (urban decay, este Lauder, Lancome,too faced,Mac,bennifit,smash box,Clinique,Chanel,bare minerals,Ysl,tarte,Kate Somerville,Anastasia Beverly Hills,and makeup forever!) and bare minerals is the only one sending me samples, I believe it's a serum.most of the companies replied saying they're not a storefront and can't send out samples,but if I purchase something I can get samples that way. I really feel like these high end makeup companies don't need my money!if they can send samples if I buy something why can't they send me some without a purchase?

    • profile image

      audi_tayy 9 months ago

      Hello, my aspersion in life is to become a makeup artist, can you please help me. I need help writing the message to the company's

    • profile image

      Taiga Rogue 8 months ago

      This was the most useful thing that i read so far until the end. Thanks for taking your time in writing this! Truly breathtaking:)

    • profile image

      Jessica Landa 8 months ago

      Thank You for Posting this Article!!! Their still nice people on this World!!! God Bless :)

    • profile image

      Isha 8 months ago

      Hey, this is exactly what I was looking for.. Crisp, sweet, sharp and up to the mark .

      Brilliant!!!

    • profile image

      nada 8 months ago

      that was really helpfull thank you alot but would they send it for another countries because i live in egypt and i really want to try to send them the letters but i dont know if they gonna accept

    • profile image

      AK Advisor 8 months ago

      The problem with this is that companies receiving this generic e-mail cut and paste from hundreds of customers view it immediately as "sample hunters" and not genuine. As soon as I see this I know someone is sending it to every company around.. Free samples? NO !

    • profile image

      jasminholmes 7 months ago

      yall have really great products and thx for everything very interesting :)

    • profile image

      Cinthia 6 months ago

      Thanks for taking the time to explained this to us....i have receive coupons from a stored i love and i was like wait free lol so. I wanted to see if i can get more coupons or products this time i didnt know it was possible i love products and writting so i guess its good for me since my budget its tight... so now that i see this article and you well explained im going to give it a try .....thank you !!!!

    • profile image

      veronica Fox 6 months ago

      It. Will. be. Nice. if. you. Can. teach. people. what. to. say. to. get. Free. Clothes. and. Shoes.

    • profile image

      Pizzagirl 6 months ago

      To Susi10

      I love your format. But what company I should send a letter to? I want to try Maybelline, if that's possible. Is it?

    • profile image

      Bethcsweet 4 months ago

      Hello!What makeup brands do you think would be able to send samples?

    • profile image

      Miranda Wilkins 4 months ago

      I think it is an Awesome Idea!!!

    • profile image

      Amanda 3 months ago

      Definitely going to give it a shot.

      Very excited to have ran across this thread across ND now on my way to email a few companies. Thank you so so much for your time in trying to help others across nods myself.

    • profile image

      Madison 3 months ago

      This sounds so fun! Thank you for sharing your experience and giving us a templet! I am going to try it out for sure !

    • profile image

      Adrienne McGinley 2 months ago

      I thought I thought I read that you wrote to about 15 companies??? Are these the only samples you received??? REN and DermOrganic??? I was hoping to see a stockpile of things that had been sent and a list of some more companies to write too!!! Anyway, great article and advice, I am in the beauty industry and this is a great way to sample products to add to my arsenal for clients!!! Thank you much for the info Susan!!! X

    • profile image

      Lena west 2 months ago

      I wood like it

    • profile image

      Jennifer C Mack 2 months ago

      I am needing information to write companies to get samples for my sorority yearly convention. I need at least 1,000 samples. I want companies that these women may not have uses before. I like trying new products also. A lot of women are "natural" and we need products that are great for our hear. Thanks for reading this message. Hope to hear from you soon.

      Yours truly,

      Jennifer C. Mack

    • susi10 profile image
      Author

      Susan W 2 months ago from The British Isles, Europe

      Hi Jennifer C. Mack,

      Thank you for your comment! You can use the phrases above and tell the company about how you want to promote their products to your convention. Also, check out www.helpareporter.com and you can send out a bulletin to lots of companies saying that you would like to promote their products at your convention in exchange for free samples. The main issue is to say the size of your convention, ie: how many people are attending and give reasons as to why they should send you samples.

      If you have any questions, let me know. :-)

      Thanks,

      Susan.

    • profile image

      kassie 8 weeks ago

      Hi... I really need skin product" m in Namibia.

    • profile image

      Rhoda Edwards 4 weeks ago

      what should i put as the subject of the email? its required

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