A 'disgusted' shopper claims she was told to wash £80-worth of supposedly new clothing from Boohoo.com that 'stunk of stale smoke and booze from a leaky stowaway hip flask'.
Leanne Oliver, 33, was horrified when she opened the package and claims she discovered a flask containing Malibu dregs that leaked onto the 'used items' – making everything sticky.
Cleaning business owner Leanne claims the package also stunk of stale cigarettes.
She has now vowed not to shop with the retailer again after they suggested she simply wash the items.
The mum-of-three believes a previous customer had used the handbag on a night out and stashed a hip flask in there, which was accidentally returned to the online retailer along with the bag.
Having bought the clothing as gifts for her sister Melissa Aldred, she was furious that her sibling's Christmas would be ruined when the items turned up soiled and clearly 'used'.
Leanne, from Farnworth, Greater Manchester, said: "I spent about £80 all together and got a couple of tops, a bag, a belt and a pair of boots.
"When the parcel arrived I could smell that it stunk of cigarettes, I don't smoke so remember thinking it smelled disgusting.
"At first I thought it was the courier and that she must have been smoking in the car but when I opened it I realised it was the stuff inside.
"The packaging was sticky and when I opened the clutch bag, which still had the tag on it, there was a hip flask inside that smelled like Malibu.
"Everything smelled so bad, it had obviously leaked. Whoever it belonged to had obviously used it on a night out and then just sent the scratched bag back."
A fuming Leanne got in touch with Boohoo via Facebook to complain about her predicament – but was stunned when a customer service advisor suggested washing the affected items.
Leanne said: "When I received that reply to wash them I remember thinking 'this isn't good enough' – especially as two of the items were meant to be gifts for my sister.
"When he suggested washing them I started laughing and thought 'this is beyond a joke'. It was one of those things that was so bad it makes you laugh."
Leanne messaged Boohoo writing: "Hi I'm so disappointed my order's just come smelling highly of cigs, there's even a used stinking hip flask in the clutch bag. I don't drink or smoke so I'm really not pleased.
"Everything is smelly and disgusting, I needed this stuff for Xmas."
Boohoo replied: "Hey Leanne, I'm really sorry to hear that, I'm quite unsure as to how that flask got in your order.
"Have you tried washing your items to see if the smell will come out? – Zahid."
Leanne wrote: "Washing the used items? Really? What about the spilled alcohol in the clutch bag?
"I'm not happy to do that, I've packed up to return, just thought you should [know]."
Leanne said she has yet to receive her refund and won't shop with them in future.
Leanne said: "The clothing smelled really bad, it stunk of cigarettes and Malibu so I just returned the lot.
"In this case it was more the customer service that was the issue, I know mistakes sometimes happen but I wasn't happy with the way it was dealt with and I'm still waiting for a refund.
"It's disgusting to use something and then send it back to sell on to someone else when it's not in a fit state.
"But Boohoo should also be checking that things are in a re-sellable condition – to then tell me to wash the item is pretty disgusting, I don't think I'll be shopping there again after this."
Boohoo has been contacted for comment.
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