Walmart shopper catches store tricking customers on Herbal Essences 'combo deal'

@karleyjoann/TikTok MichaelVi/Adobe Stock (Licensed)

‘The math wasn’t mathing’: Walmart shopper catches store tricking customers on Herbal Essences bundle ‘deal’

'This is why it’s important to learn math in school, kids.'


Braden Bjella


Posted on May 11, 2024   Updated on May 11, 2024, 8:00 am CDT

Product labels can be deceptive. While one may think they’re buying a product they know well, without carefully examining the label of each product, they might not actually be sure of what they’re getting or how much they’re really paying for it.

For example, “shrinkflation” has recently become a prominent topic of discussion, with internet users showing how products like Betty Crocker cake mix and Kraft Dinner now contain significantly less product than they did in years prior.

Do ‘Buy More’ deals save you money?

Another way this deception manifests is through deals and sales that aren’t as good as they initially appear. Frequently, this takes the form of “buy more and save” deals, where customers are encouraged to buy additional items or bigger products to achieve a lower price. As some have already pointed out, this isn’t always as straightforward as it initially appears.

Now, a user on TikTok has sparked discussion after revealing a “buy 2 and save” deal that doesn’t offer the savings it promises.

In a clip with over 472,000 views as of Saturday, TikTok user Karley Joann (@karleyjoann) shows a shelf at Walmart containing Herbal Essences shampoo and conditioner.

“This is why it’s important to learn math in school, kids,” she starts.

As the video continues, she points out that individual bottles of shampoo and conditioner are being sold at the store for $6.97 each. However, the “buy 2 and save” pack available right next to them is being sold at $18.97. Every bottle visible contains the same amount of product by volume.

Doing some quick math, the TikToker calculates that buying each of the bottles individually would result in a bill of $13.94; the “buy 2 and save” pack is $18.97, meaning that a customer would actually be spending over $5 more for the bundle.

“Make it make sense,” she concludes.

@karleyjoann #fyp #foryou #fy #momsoftiktok #basicmath #math #addition #walmart #makeitmakesense ♬ original sound – Karley Joann

How to actually save money

Commenters alleged that this kind of deception was common, with some offering their own ways to combat it.

“I literally did this at Walmart the other day. The math wasn’t mathing,” wrote a user.

“You don’t even have to math, you check the price per oz (the orange part) and it always reveals the truth lol,” declared another.

“I asked a manager the same question last time , he simply said ‘honestly idk,’” recalled a third. “He took $10 off that $18.97 at the register.”

The Daily Dot reached out to Walmart via its media contact form, Karley Joann via TikTok direct message, and Herbal Essences via its website contact form.

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*First Published: May 11, 2024, 7:59 am CDT