In a viral TikTok video that has been viewed over 460,000 times, user @backdoorgf, who used to work at Tiffany & Co, claims the items at the store are cheaply made and have exorbitant markups.
The former jewelry retail worker concludes that many brand name pieces just aren’t worth the cost and says many customers had valid complains about their expensive pieces unexpectedly breaking or getting tarnished.
@backdoorgf not all designer stuff is like this but A LOT of it is….. #tiffanyandco #finejewellery #isitworhthemoney ♬ original sound – 😇
“I feel like what a lot of people really don’t understand is you’re not really paying for the quality of the piece,” she says in her video. “You are literally paying for it to have a designer name on it.”
The former Tiffany & Co worker goes on to explain the company profits from significant price markups that may not reflect the labor or cheap materials that went into making the product.
“How do you think that the owner of Tiffany & Co became one of the richest men in the world?” she asks.
She then goes on to give an example of the price markups using a silver ring she bought at the store that she says typically retails for $450 to $500.
“With my discount, it was like $20,” she said, adding that the store, “still made a profit with me buying it for $20.”
According data from the Retail Owners Institute, the gross profit margin for jewelry stores (which is calculated by subtracting the cost of goods from a business’s revenues) is typically about 43.5 percent. For luxury brands, that number can be even higher, especially if the company is selling “Everyday Objects”, like straws for $250.
In the comments section, many users agreed with the TikToker’s analysis about Tiffany & Co jewelry being cheaply made and not worth the price.
“100% paying for that little blue box,” one user commented.
“If people understood how big of a mark up the jewelry industry has they would NEVER buy jewelry again,” another comment read.
Others, however, defended the retailers products and said that customers should know how to care for their jewelry.
“I’ve been wearing my Tiffany jewelry for decades and it’s almost like new because I take care of it,” one person claimed.
“And also, your necklaces tarnish because they are silver. Silver needs to be polished. People shopping at Tiffany’s should know that,” another wrote.
The Daily Dot reached out to @backdoorgf via TikTok comments and Tiffany and Co via contact form for comment.