April 01, 2016


I love shopping. And I’m sure you do as well. 

My other weakness: Instagram. I’m pretty disciplined when it comes to social media, but there’s something about perusing through other ‘grammers perfectly coordinated feeds that’s got me entranced…and obviously I’m always going through other beauty bloggers’ accounts and salivating over their recent purchases. 

Anyway, one of the best things to come from Instagram and the online world at large, is innovate interpreneurs (internet entrepreneurs) who have managed to use the platform as a virtual store. What that means for me and fellow beauty lovers is that we get access to the latest US, UK, Korean (anywhere really) beauty products without worrying too much about pesky overseas shipping fees and the gut-wrenching wait for an order that might take ages to arrive (hopefully not damaged) at your door. I find the service to be quite convenient as most sellers courier your orders so you don’t have to worry too much about Post Office strikes (#SouthAfrican) and the lot. The down side is that you still need to pay the delivery fee and returns/ refunds are not always guaranteed.

Although at the beginning I was quite nervous about shopping off Instagram (which is pretty much depositing money to a stranger on the net in the hopes that you are not being scammed) I realised that there are several ways to identify legit sellers’ accounts on the ‘gram. Here are a few tips:

1.      The account has a pretty massive following (5K+).

2.      The account corresponds regularly with its followers and addresses complaints professionally.

3.      The account reposts multiple photos of purchases made and the buyer validates the repost/ purchase.

4.      There is usually a period for taking orders so that the seller has enough products in stock.

5.      Buyers and followers are from diverse backgrounds.

6.      The account is usually tagged by makeup artists and bloggers who market themselves through Instagram and other social media.

7.      The seller supplies his/her contact details (Whatsapp and Email usually) and responds to queries made on these platforms.

8.      The seller can specify a delivery date based on the date of your order.

9.      The seller is willing to send swatches of the products in stock.

10.   The banking details provided are based at a licensed financial services provider, so any of the well-known banking facilities. It’s also important that you deposit into a registered account- don’t cashsend! I believe it’s easier to report a fraudulent bank account than trace a cellphone number.

I’m sure there are several other guidelines to shopping off Instagram, but those are the most important in my experience and I definitely do my research before making any purchases. In my next post, I’ll review the beauty products that I’ve bought off Instagram which includes the infamous Morphe 350 Natural glow palette and Colourpop Ultra Matte Lipgloss.

I would love to hear your opinions on shopping off Instagram and how the experience has been for you. 

Thanks for reading,



  1. This is a great post! I've never bought anything off Instagram before, I have been eyeing those Morphe palettes. Please do swatches or looks or reviews on them.

    I think one big thing for me about Instagram sellers is sometimes you can't be sure if you are getting a real product or if it's a fake, there are a lot of fake makeup products coming in from the East these days. Your tips will really help me out.

    I tried replying on your snap chat asking for more information on the colourpop lipsticks, something is wrong with the app, the reply didn't send. I'll wait for the blog post.

    Anyway, enough of the essay! :)

    Lungi | www.bylungi.com

    1. Hi Lungi, thank you! Glad that you found the tips to be helpful.I'm always weary of receiving fake products as well that's why I make sure to check out the buyers' comments and posts. It really helps when other makeup enthusiasts comment because they do a mini review. I'll make sure to have a review soon as well.

      Lol at the 'essay' comment. I really thought I'd kept it short hey...need to work on my editing skills.

  2. Oh no no, I meant that my comment was an essay. I wasn't critiquing your post. Your blog post is perfect!

    1. Thanks for clearing that up Lungi! Didn't take offence though...and thank you!

  3. Very insightful post. Never bought anything off Instagram before.x


    1. Thanks for reading Steph! A lot of the current beauty faves from UK and US bloggers aren't available in South Africa, so buying off Instagram or online shops makes it a bit easier for us.

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