The “$5 wrinkle trick” (TruVisage, PurEssance) trial trap

On a lot of websites I visit I see ads like “Mom discovers $5 wrinkle trick — see her trick”. These ads lead to sites such as which advertise “free trials” of cosmetic products called TruVisage and PurEssance using deceptive advertising:

  • The trial is not free but costs $5.35, supposedly for shipping and handling.
  • Unless the trial is cancelled within 20 days, a further $74.95 is charged for the first bottle, which you may or may not have received by then.
  • After 30 days you will be billed another $80.30 ($74.95 + $5.35 shipping and handling). The same amount will be charged every 30 days after until canceled.
  • The website uses logos of newspapers and other media as if they had reviewed the product, which they haven’t. For example, when viewed from Japan it shows the logos of Japan Times, Yomiui Shimbun and Asahi Shimbun
  • The date at which the free trial is supposed to expire is always one day away – it is dynamically calculated based on your local time.
  • The date of all “user comments” are always one day old – they are also dynamically calculated based on your local time.

The deception used in these ads is very similar to the tricks used in the “Work at home mom” scam and the target population may be similar too.


There is another variant of these ads. The ad text is something like “Woman is 53 but looks like 27” or “Mom Cut 20 Years in a Week Using This 1 Weird Trick” and takes you to a site called “” where they advertise products called “BellaGenix” and “PuraSilk”. Shipping and handling is $4.95 but the first package is $99.95 and the subscription will cost you $89.95 every 30 days until cancelled. Beware!

25 thoughts on “The “$5 wrinkle trick” (TruVisage, PurEssance) trial trap

  1. Hi,
    I have yet to receive my trial Puressance. I have paid twice USD 5.35 on 5.3.13 and only received

  2. I fully agree, this truvisage site is a hoax. I can’t believe how dishonest people can get, and apart from trying to inform web users, it always seems to be too late.

  3. @Linda Lee: Unless you cancel within 20 days you’ll be billed $74.95 and then another $80.30 every thirty days. Don’t fall into their trap!

  4. I don’t know how to cancel the order, since I have not placed any order myself. Did you receive any order confirmation by email? Did that confirmation include a phone number?

  5. Yes I do agree with all the comments above as it happened to me, both products are excellent but they are thieves as the take your money from your account unauthorised, until I had to cancel it from my bank shame and a pitty…watch out girls.

  6. I almost got conned into this until I checked the terms n conditions. By the way if u want to cancel yr order, here are the phone numbers. Whether the numbers are real, sorry I don’t know.
    For tru visage:
    1-800-931-7034 US & Canada
    +1-315-552-9006 Worldwide
    1-800-816-124 Malaysia
    1-800-731-564 Australia
    0-800-098-8501 UK
    800-852-3872 Singapore
    0800-900047 France

  7. Looking at the comments, the last one before mine was a year ago however I’m guessing this trial is still goin on. This are the phone numbers for puressance
    1-800-858-0792 US & Canada
    +1-650-989-1209 Worldwide
    1-800-816-124 Malaysia
    1-800-731-564 Australia
    0-800-098-8501 UK
    800-852-3872 Singapore
    0800-900047 France

    Wat would u know. They are the same numbers, hence probably the same company. They didn’t even bother to have different numbers. Well like I said earlier. For all u know the phone number are fake. If anyone tries and gets through to canceling, please post yr end results.

  8. No,1 Scam business in the world‼︎

    They say trial is not free.
    whach out for the scam website.
    Till you cancel,they will going to keep sending
    here’s the No.and email adress.

    Customer Support
    Worldwide Support: +1-315-552-9006
    Malaysia: 1-800-816-124 TOLL FREE
    Australia: 1-800-731-564 TOLL FREE
    United Kingdom: 0-800-098-8501 TOLL FREE
    Singapore: 800-852-3872 TOLL FREE
    France: 0800-900047 TOLL FREE
    USA & Canada: 1-800-381-8791 TOLL FREE

  9. Do any of the above numbers work for you for cancellation? If not, try contacting your credit card company to stop the payment.

  10. I just got scammed twice in one go! &
    I would normally be very careful when told Ive won a prise its normally to good to be true’! … 7 months pregnant a little stressed now hopefully I can stop the larger payments from leaving my account. Thanks for setting up this blog to help us out. Feeling a little silly now ;0(

  11. Hi Joe,
    thanks for publishing this. I fell for a similar scam a few years ago and the result was that my VISA details were stolen and used to buy a laptop somewhere in East Germany. When I looked for the address of the company selling these magic creams, it was a PO box somewhere in the UK. So Ladies, be ware and go invest in a high quality cream from your local Boots or beautician. Yoou’ll save money and nerves.

  12. Omg.. i jus notice i was being scam.. what should i do. Last mth the deduct US5. And last week the deduct US 29 and today they deduct US25 . How do i cancel it. Please help

  13. i am also vicitm of this scam . phone number given of code 357 cyprus
    first deducted dolloars 7 and today on 17t july educted dollars 89
    nobody catches these people .
    the people can be traced as they have accounts and should be put behind bars

  14. I used my internet card for my sample payment, and fortunately i had no money in my card when they tried to charge my account, so my bank alerted me. After writing an email to them they informed me of their so called 3 month membership but they informed me that they would cancel it and my sample order that was apparently already dispatched. When i asked them how can you refund me if the sample has already been dispatched they replied oh it was returned to us as the packaging was damaged. This reply made me realize that these guys are bullshitters….sorry for the phrase but how else can i characterize them

  15. Marketers specialize in preying on people’s fears and insecurities. They understand that one of the greatest fears people have, women in particular, is AGING. Vanity is a bitch! In that human shortcoming, they see a golden opportunity to make $$$. They formulate “incredible claims” and carefully devise a deceptive marketing scheme to lure unsuspecting victims in. First comes the claim that a “miracle” solution was miraculously discovered that could provide answers to “your primordial fears,” and which btw, famous mainstream brand name products (backed by millions of dollars in R&D and years of experience) somehow couldn’t figure out! Are you hooked yet? At the least you’re intrigued. Very intrigued! You read on. Then comes the testimonials of previous users who were lucky enough to find out about the miracle product before you, accompanied by the “proof” in the form of badly Photoshopped before/after pictures. Of course, we can’t forget the 100% Money Back Guarantees and the Free Trial that they are more than anxious to send you “because they’re SO sure that once you try their product, you will sell your children to get more.” It’s that “risk free” bait that gets most people hooked-in. Oh, but wait a minute! Suddenly you find out there’s a $4 or $5 shipping fee for your free trial! You think to yourself “that’s not a big deal! I can risk such a negligible amount for the chance of achieving such miraculous results.” After all, you’d sell your children to do that, remember? Wink wink! And here’s where you “bite the bait.” You surrender your credit card number to an unknown company, desperately trusting in your good hearted gullibility that the rats on the receiving end are honest and conscientious people just like you, and that they would surely honor their promises to you and safeguard your rights and hard-earned money. WRONG! Some of you might even think that you are a careful and shrewd enough not to fall for such scams, so you go directly to Google and start researching the product, typing-in the word “scam” along with the product name. Low and behold, you’re surprised that you get many hits, and you start clicking away, only to find out that most of the “Scam Alerts” and “Reviews” counter-intuitively sing the praise and confirm the legitimacy of said product. What gives?! Well, if you haven’t guessed who wrote these reviews by now, maybe you’re not the careful and shrewd consumer you thought you were!
    All these factors put together should be a loud and clear give-away it’s a SCAM.
    If you’re one of the unfortunate ones who fell for this trick, don’t even bother trying to contact the company. You’ll get nowhere. Call your bank and cancel your card immediately, and let this be a lesson to you that you live amongst blood thirsty predators who would stoop to the lowest tiers of hell to separate you from you money. And like mama said, if it’s too good to be true, it most certainly is!
    Good luck!

  16. Thank you for your posting this information about the Truvisage scam. I bought the sample with a friend’s credit card as I do not have a credit card. I only realised she was being charged when I asked her to check her credit card statement after I received two further samples. She didn’t get back to me and after 5 months I asked her to check again. She then rang me telling me that hers count was being debited by around €80 a month and asked me what was Truvisage. I felt so embarrassed, but paid her back over €500 and asked her to cancel her card – more expense and inconvenience.

    Since she cancelled her card and I emailed Truvisage asking them to refund the money I I’d receiving telephone calls constantly. As the number was blocked I didn’t return the call, but they just keep ringing and they got me this morning 10am GMT it must the middle of the night in America!! Anyway the girl wants to refund the money and asked me to return the products and she’d refund the money. I explained to her that I didn’t own a credit and that the one she took the money from has been cancelled. She said she could refund it to the original number. Her email included a delivery order number for returning the creams. Can she refund the money or is this another way of scamming me? Help.
    Thank you.

  17. Ann,

    It should still be possible for your friend to receive a refund on your behalf even if the card has been cancelled, provided the bank account the original card is debited from is still open and she has obtained a replacement card linked to the same bank account. In that case, when the refund is issued it should end up being credited to the replacement card (source: ). Getting a refund to the original card number should be safe, but don’t give them a new card.

  18. I ordered a sample for my wife on July 22 and today, August 6, I got billed for almost 200$. I didn’t even receive the sample. Can I get my money back? I live in Sweden.

  19. 1 Don’t accept anything from them in the mail
    2 Call your credit card company right away. I had to get a new card because of this stupid scam.

    My bad! Didn’t google before I emailed them. They even sent threatening emails to me as soon as I said I didn’t want their samples.

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