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      13.10.2015 17:31
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      Great Fashion & Hair Accessories

      I often travel around the UK and when I'm shopping I always notice that there seems to be a Claire's Accessories in nearly every town! Claire's is a fun little shop which is mostly aimed at kids and teens. The shop sells a variety of items including hair accessories (bands, scrunchies, clips, embellishments etc), fashion accessories (bags, scarves, hats etc), jewelry and novelty make-up. You can also find some assorted items at times such as school equipment and gifts.

      Claire's seem to specialize in earrings since their range is enormous. I personally used to love their collection because they sell very cheap collections of earrings on little plastic cards. The earrings tend to be made of non precious metals and stones but they are so cheap that they are replaceable by the time they start to dis-colour or look worn. Claire's actually provide their own ear piercing service which appears to be very popular. Given the huge range of studs this is a real treat for any youngster who loves dressing up.

      I personally shop at Claire's for the hair accessories. I have long hair and I like to use hair bands as a fashion statement and to keep my hair out of my eyes. I also use scrunchies, decorative clips and elastic hair bands. The range is huge in Claire's. It's always my first choice when looking for a new hair accessory. I would love to say the quality is always 100% but the sizes of things like cloth hair bands is not consistent. In terms of design you can find some really beautiful items though and items that look much more expensive than they actually cost. Claire's is probably one of the cheapest outlets selling this sort of product.

      Claire's often sell themed items which makes this a brilliant place to find stocking filler gifts for young people, girls in particular. They might stock, as a for instance, One Direction pencil cases or Coca Cola lip balms. If you go in looking for a gift or particular item the staff are always quick to approach you and ask if you need any help. They also often offer you a little string shopping basket as the small items can be tricky to carry around the store.

      I would initially recommend Claire's to anyone with a young daughter but I'd also say there is the odd thing in store for adults too. I will certainly be shopping there again in the future.

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      06.08.2013 13:58
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      5/5

      As a 21 year old you think I'd be finished with Claire's Accessories, but I still manage to find myself in there almost every time I visit town. Claire's sells accessories (mainly hair accessories, beauty accessories and jewellery) for girls. I would say the target demographic is between 5 and 14, but like I say I find stuff I would buy at 21 and there is also stuff for younger girls.

      =The products=

      As I've said Claire's mostly sells hair accessories, beauty accessories and jewellery along with some other things like bags, sunglasses, tights and flip-flops.

      The reason I still go in there is that they have a lot of jewellery from the 'emo' era and some of it is still fine for me to wear without looking like a teenager. Some of it screams attention-seeking teen, but some of it is really nice. People are always surprised when they ask where I got my jewellery and I say Claire's! If you want some cheaper jewellery to wear day-to-day definitely give it a look - you'd be surprised at how much you'd wear.

      This is a great place to go if you need hair accessories. They have a huge range of elastics, clips, grips, bands and pretty much anything you need to style your hair. If you are looking for something to do an elaborate hairstyle with give them a go because they honestly have everything. They also have a wide range of colours and styles.

      They always have really nice earring and they are quite often on 3 for 2, but they aren't the greatest quality. I have quite sensitive ears and these can make them sore. For most people it'll be fine, but if you suffer like me it's probably best to avoid them or only wear their earring for a short amount of time. I need gold earring to really be comfortable for a long time.

      There's also a section for very young girls which is definitely worth a look if you need to buy a present for a little lady! I have a 3 year old sister and get her a present from here every Birthday and Christmas because it's designed for children, but it makes them feel grown up!

      =Ear Piercing=

      I have had my ears pierced at Claire's. I got a second lobe piercing in each ear. They say it's 'free', but you have to pay for the earrings which are a minimum of £20 so it's not really free!

      The gun they used was quick and painless and they explained all the aftercare really well. If anything it was a better experience than when I got my first lobe piercings in a professional piercing parlour. I've seen other children get their ears pierced and the piercer is always really comforting and friendly and puts the child at ease which is good because I imagine most of them are very scared!

      The only issue I have with it is that it's in the store window for everyone to see. I was 17 so it wasn't an issue for me, but for some younger children this might be a bit stressful if they get panicked and have everyone staring at them.

      =Service and Store Layout=

      I always find Claire's really cramped. I always find myself knocking things off the shelf with my bag. Despite the cramped atmosphere, I always manage to find exactly what I'm looking for as it is always laid out really logically.

      The staff are usually female and always seem to be enjoying their job. They're always smiling and happy to help! One thing I don't really like is that they always push you to take advantage of the deals they have at the till; it's not really a big deal because I just say no, but it's just something I don't like.

      =Overall=

      Overall I think Claire's is a great place and even if you don't like the products yourself, I'm sure you know a girl who would love a present from there! I think the products are of good quality and really cool and I'm giving the shop 5/5.

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        18.06.2013 17:50
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        Would recommend to children and teenagers

        ***Background***

        Claire's accessories are hard to miss, with a shop in most towns and shopping centres but with 3,469 stores across 36 countries, it's not surprising that it is a staple part of the high street. They are probably best known for their range of costume jewellery and ear piercing services however they also stock hair accessories, stationary and notebooks, perfumes, socks and tights, purses, stuffed animals and sunglasses. If there is a celebration day coming up Claire's also cater for that, for example Halloween, Christmas and Valentine's Day.

        As I said before they also do ear piercing, in many stores the piercing is free and you only need to pay for the earrings and solutions. I personally have never had a piercing done here so I wouldn't like to comment on how well they are done etc. In every store I have been in the ear piercing station is either in the window or the middle of the shop. I think this is a bad idea as people do seem to stop and watch it going on and I know that I personally wouldn't want everyone staring at me whilst I had it done.

        ***The store itself***

        I feel the layout for this store is quite good. Everything is either on shelves on the walls or till or on circular stands making it easy to see all the products. They are usually arranged by style, 'punk' items in one area 'girly' items in another and so on. Some of the smaller stores are a bit cramped and this can result in knocking things off or bumping into people which is a right pain in the backside. The colour scheme is purple, feminine but not overly girly. It also connotes luxury and extravagance, even though their products don't keep up this connotation.

        ***The products***

        The jewellery is nice when it doesn't fall apart. I feel that the price of the products is way too high for the quality. Although it is aimed at kids and teenagers and only costume jewellery, I still feel that when you buy something you expect it to last. I have bought many things that just seem to fall apart and regularly see broken stock on shelves.

        ***The Staff***

        Every time I have been into Claire's the staff have been friendly and helpful. I find that if you need help you have to ask instead of an assistant coming to ask if you need help, but to me that isn't a huge deal especially if they are busy elsewhere. I have always received service with a smile and I would give 5 out of 5 to their customer service.

        I would recommend it to children and teenagers but certainly not adults.

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        27.01.2012 15:06
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        Gorgeous accessories, but at what price?

        I'm in the generation that grew up with this particular shop being called Claire's instead of Bow Bangles, and the name brings nostalgia of pretty hair clips and magnetic clip on earrings. Needless to say, this shop is one of the few aimed at teens and pre teens, and in that sense is almost a paradise for the swarms of teen girls I seem to see huddling in groups around the shop every time I go in.

        They sell a fantastically varied range of hats, jewellery, bags, sunglasses, purses, belts, shoes, scarf's, gloves and make up. Any young girl would be overwhelmed at the sight of all their essentials in one place! Even though some say I may have outgrown it, being a student quite into vintage apparel, I absolutely love their range of necklaces and earrings, as they satisfy my taste for kitsch yet sophisticated jewellery every time. What I found handy in my preteen years were the clip on earrings, making me feel like a little girl having raided my mummy's jewellery box, they are so easy to put on and come in a mind blowing range of colours, shapes and designs. However, because of the weight of clip on earrings, they do tend to slide off quite a bit! I previously bought a gorgeous black trilby from Claire's, which I am pleased to say is very high quality and has lasted me through the years, definitely encouraging me to go back again! Their gloves, which I have purchased two pairs of, to tend to fall apart rather quickly with regular use, which im afraid may be a sign of poor quality. However, that is my only complaint, as all of the other materials in Claire's are of reasonable quality! The makeup doesn't look at all tacky, the designs are rather sophisticated and the makeup itself is suited perfectly for teens; bright coloured eyeshadows, sultry shades of eyeliner and pinker-than-pink lipsticks.

        The price of Claire's merchandise can be quite expensive, with customers paying up to £10 for a single necklace. To say it is aimed at teens, most of who don't work, the prices are rather taxing. As a student, I don't find the prices at Claire's helpful on a budget, although they are a well worth thing to save up and spend you pocket money on!

        They also offer an ear piercing service, for which you can get both ears pierced for £15, a reasonable and competitive price in my opinion. As for the quality, when I had my ears pierced, the environment was clean, the assistants were very friendly and reassuring, and they seemed to know how to use the piercing gun properly. After the piercing, they made sure to spend time speaking to me and my mum about aftercare and gave us a solution to bathe the ears in everyday. Needless to say, there was no after infection with that quality of piercing.

        Claire's have a website, www.claires.com, on which you can browse all their merchandise and the prices at which they are held. The one downside is that you cannot order from their website and have to go in store to purchase anything. ON the website they have also included style blogs by real teens which are helpful and definitely help fashion conscious teens find their way style-wise.

        Overall, Claire's may be pricey and some of their stuff isn't of the highest quality, but because of the gorgeous accessories and generally welcoming atmosphere, I find myself going back again and again!

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        18.08.2011 20:09

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        Just wanted to let everyone know that Claire's in the east mall pierced my daughters ear at the very bottom and would not give her any compensation for it! It was so low that you could see the back of the earring from the front, and we told her the dot was too low twice and she said she would do it higher and obviously didnt. She had to sit through it again. Very rude company .. especially their corporate office! Just saying.

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        10.08.2011 17:31
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        great accsesorie shop

        i never really used to go in to claires accsessoires not even when it was called bow bangles. most people still call it bow bangles. that's what people i know still know it as. i went in the a few weeks ago and i was amazed to find how much stuff they have and how lovely their jewellery is. where is live the store isn't that big but its crammed full of beautiful little items.

        they have a massive back wall full of hair accessories from cute little hair clips, bobbles, hair extensions and head bands. i didn't know where to start.

        they have racks and racks full of different ear ring. if you love ear rings then this is the place to go.

        The rings in the shop don't have sizes on them so you have to go through a load to find the right size to fit, but to be honest that is a really big problem for me. i don't mind trying loads of rings on.

        they sell bags, purses and hats and i now have noticed they have started selling shoes as well. which is always good.
        they have a small collection of hen night stuff from feather bowers to head bands with the wobbly springy things on top. necklaces and flashing badges and the good old L plate.

        claire's do a kiddie section with little time bracelets and hair bands. the colours are so bright and vibrant which i adore.

        you can also get your ears pierced which i love. you buy the ear rings from the shop and they pierce your ears for you. i don't know how much it is as i already have my ears pierced so there is no need for me to ask the price.

        this little shop is amazing. what ever your looking for you can most likely find it in claires. if i ever need any accessories i always head for claires as i know they will have some thing perfect for what i am looking for.

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        13.02.2011 17:44

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        I would recommend Claire's as a place for piercings.

        Just a few days ago, I went to Claire's to get my ear lobes pierced. The staff was friendly, and gave me time to decide what earrings it wanted. Then my mom had to sign some forms, etc. They went over the after care instructions with both of us. It was quick, almost painless, and EASY. They took the earrings from an unopened box, as well as the piercing guns. The lady piercing my ears made sure that she cleaned her hands, though she never touched the earrings until after they were in my ears, and that was just to clean them. She simply counted to 3 and pierced. Same with the other ear. Once they were in, she cleaned my ears and made sure that my mother understood how to clean them. She took the piercing guns and dropped them into this pouch, I assume so that they could be properly cleaned before used again. They sent us home with a bottle of ear cleaning stuff. It was NOT alcohol based. They let us know that our ears will only get infected if we don't clean them. So now I'm cleaning them 3 times a day. They don't hurt anymore, and the ear cleaning stuff doesn't sting. If I ever get my ears pierced again, it will most likely be at Claire's!

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        06.02.2011 00:34
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        I still shop there

        I don't think that I am the only one who will still refer to Claire's Accessories as Bow Bangles even though it has been Claire's for well over 10 years now this store will always be Bow Bangles to me :)

        Claire's Accessories is a High Street store which sells lots of bits and pieces to complete any outfit from head pieces to earrings, necklaces to nail varnish you name the outfit and somewhere in this store you will find something to go with it.

        Things I like about Claire's.....

        There is lots of choice. I like that they have a real variety of items and also items in different colours. They occasionally have some great sales on and you can get a bargain especially on bags and hats and scarves.
        I like that they stock items from the latest trends and also items which are a little different to other stores. They also offer piercing services and they used to do teeth gems they are always upto date with the latest craze in that way. Though my days of tooth gems and nail piercings are over I am sure the teens of today appreciate it as I used to.

        Things I am not so keen on in Claire's......

        The shops are always really cramped with lots of mini display units everywhere, it is sometimes hard to squeeze between the displays and there are some shops which are particularly tiny an example of this would be the upstairs store at the Merry hill Centre in Dudley here there are 2 stores for some reason the one has the usual amount of small swinging space inside but the other its a hassle just to get through the door. I would not exactly call these stores wheelchair friendly.

        The jewellery in my opinion is not very good quality and if I buy anything from the store I am surprised if it lasts more than a couple of wears. I wouldn't mind the fact that the jewellery isn't the best quality if the prices reflected that however they don't you pay alot in my opinion for poor quality. Personally I have had jewellery from Primark which has looked better in some cases and lasted longer. That said the bags, hats and scarves to do seem to be of better standard, gloves I have had tend to un thread themselves within a couple of weeks so I wouldn't recommend you buy gloves either.

        My only other niggle with the store not a major one more of an irritation is te way someone tries to thrust a basket into your hand the second you walk in and then tries to flog you some nail polish or other junk as you try to pay for the items you actually want, however I do know that that is their job to ask and always say no thank you politely when asked if I would like a nail file for £2.

        Overall I will give Claire's 3 stars as for all my grumbles i still shop there in a accessory emergency.

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          05.01.2011 18:47

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          shouldnt pierce helix without proper needle.

          my son got his helix pierced at claires in crawley.Not only did it cost him £15 it cost him xmas and new year.It was red and severely swollen as well as pusy.We had to go to casualty to get it removed this took 3 attemps as it was stuck when it came out it was curved.I cant understand why they put piercings into the helix using a gun as it shatters the cartilage,also the earring was to small and embedded into the ear.When he went to the shop they said oh it s not our fault or yours but you need to see a doc,its appalling that they can do this its a quick money make geared at teens,I hope that this backfires on them and something is done abot it.My son was put on penicillin for 8 days and was unwell over xmas and new year,he has spoken to a PROPER PIERCER and was told that a needle should be used for that type of piercing as the gun shatters the cartillage,i hope claires crawley read this and have a little remorse!

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          24.12.2010 16:54

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          Claire's // Icings should not be allowed to pierce ears

          I am a big fan of piercings and got my first pair of lobe piercings when I was 5 years old. I proceeded to get my second lobe piercings when I was 12, and my third holes along with a helix piercing (only midway up my ear) for my 16th birthday. I got all of these piercings at Claire's and Icings. Later on when I was 17 and 18 I got my upper helix pierced. I did not just get it once... I GOT IT DONE THREE DIFFERENT TIMES. YES, three cartilage piercings by Claire's. Let me tell you it was the worst decision ever. I had each of them in for over a year, which is past the expected healing time, and NONE of them ever healed correctly. I am now 19 years old and do not have my helix piercings in. Now you may think that it may just be my ears that do not heal, but it is not. I recently got my rook pierced at a local tattoo shop (I also have my navel pierced) and got it pierced by a PROFESSIONAL PIERCER who actually knows what they're doing, and my piercing is almost healed about 3 weeks later. So basically what I am saying is NEVER GET YOUR CARTILAGE PIERCED AT CLAIRE'S OR ICINGS. THEY ARE NOT PROFESSIONALS AND DO NOT KOW JACK SHIT ABOUT WHAT THEY ARE DOING. THE GUNS THAT THEY USE TO PIERCE YOUR HELIX (AKA CARTILAGE) WILL SHATTER THE CARTILAGE. Although going to a tattoo shop will be a little more expensive, it most definitely will be worth it because they will be clean and efficient. Please, take my advice. I do have a lot of experience with fresh piercings and healed ones. All I'm saying is Claire's is a DEFINITE NO NO for cartilage piercings.

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          15.11.2010 20:38
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          Overall very positive experience and would recommend them.

          Trying to find a jeweller's that pierce children's ears these days is almost an impossible task (well, where I stay it is). Claire's Accessories seem to have the market cornered in most high street shopping centres. I took my daughter in and although they wouldn't be my first choice, they sadly are my only choice. However, that aside I was very impressed with the level of professional service I received from the assistants, everything was explained in great detail, I read the agreement form and signed it whilst they put my daughter at ease. There are loads of earrings to choose from and all very pretty I must say, the price was £26 for us which includes their cleaning solution. I'm sure there are other cheaper alternatives but it's pretty much up to the individual. They marked on her ears a black dot and lined them up and I had to agree that it was ok (which it was), then the other assistant comes over and they pierce them at the same time - all over in a second literally and my daughter not even a flinch in her chair!

          Overall, we all know that Claire's is expensive for what you get however girls love it and will continue to do so but the ear piercing service was excellent and would recommend it to anyone.

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            15.05.2010 22:54
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            Avoid if Possible

            Claire's ( Accessories ) is a shop aimed at tweens and teens. It is a young girls dream - it has everything they could possibly want to look good. Belts, makeup, false nails, jewellery, nail polish, hair accessories and hair basics like hairbrushes, bands and bags can all be found in this store. Claire's is available all across the UK, and you're sure to have one near you.

            I used to go in here a lot thinking it was so good but now I realise it was all just plastic rubbish. When you are at the pre-teen stage you don't realise that the silver earrings are poor quality, and that the gold make your ears turn green. You don't realise that £10 for a little handbag that looks so tacky is not worth that money. You don't realise.... well, never mind.

            Here are the good and bad things of Claire's Accessories :

            Good

            1. The variety of products on offer. It can please almost any girl, whether they are a total girly girl into High School Musical and Hello Kitty, to girls more into goth, will skulls and black.

            2. How many stores there are across the UK. You won't have to travel too far to reach your nearest.

            3. You can get your ears pierced there. In store.

            4. The lip balms. They have loads. I just got one that smells like Cookie Dough a good few weeks back- and it's still half full.

            Bad

            1. The ear piercing service. I said in the Good about getting your ears pierced in store, but that doesn't mean the actual piercing is good. I'm sure almost all girls get their ears pierced there. Though it's ridiculously expensive and at my local Claire's it is done in the corner, all squashed up with everyone to see. It's not cool to have loads of people crowding round you with 2 members of staff each holding a gun to an ear. And they do nothing about the crowd.

            2. The quality of the products. They may look awesome but they will not last long at all.

            3. The size of the store. They are tiny, with things crammed on any shelve possible. And some parts in the middle of nowhere?! What if a wheelchair bound customer wanted to get round for a necklace or something? There would be no space for them to move around.

            4. Some staff. Don't get me wrong, there are some very nice staff members who are there when you need help and serve you as quickly as they can. But the majority of them stand about gossiping, sighing when you ask for help and keep you waiting, trying to MAKE you buy this nail polish since it's on a 3for2. But I don't WANT it! And they're also handing you bags/baskets as soon as you come in when you don't need one. Even if I did I could do that myself!

            5. The prices. Earrings for £3.50 ? That may sound cheap but for 1 or 2 pairs that turn your ears green are not worth it. And I also saw this bag that was tiny and an awkward shape, for £15. Woah.

            So, overall I don't really like this store. It's all plastic, tacky and poor quality which is not worth the price. I guess it is a Heaven for pre teens and teens but not for me! I don't recommend this store for accessories, cheap places like ASDA do lovely jewellery for half the price. If you're looking for quality, avoid this place like the plague. I guess I'm not going back there for a while then.

            Hope my review helped you.
            - Megasaur

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              27.04.2010 02:45
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              Not really worth it

              Claires (AKA Claires Accessories) is an accessories store, which is all over the UK and also in America. They sell a wide range of accessories and can be a great place to pop into for cute little accessories, presents or just to browse through all the colorful stuff, once you fight through the groups of pree teens!

              Claires sell a major variety of items including: Bags, Purses, Watches, Earrings, Necklaces, Bracelets, Belly Rings, Nose Studs, Hair Pieces, Hair Bands, Phone Charms, Hair Clips, Charm Bracelets, False Nails, Nail Varnish, Make Up and Hats. There are many other items too, and you really can spend a small fortune in here, but that may also be due to most of the items being stupidly over priced!

              A lot of Claires stuff could be considered tacky, and some of it is literally just made of cheap, colored plastic which I have found breaks quite easily. I used to own a lot of earrings from Claires, but I found they broke quite a lot, and they irritated my ears after a short time of wearing them. I have had no problems with their tongue bars though, and I continue to use them, as I have quite a few of them still.

              I have had some necklaces and bracelets from Claires, and they have broken quite easily, which I would expect from they way they look to be made, but the price I paid for them I would have hoped they stayed together a little bit longer. The nail varnish's I have bought from Claires have been quite nice colors, and a decent sized bottle for the price, but you soon realise you need about 6 coats to get any color on to your nails, and it chips really quickly and easily too, so you are probably better off buying a more expensive nail varnish from else where, as it will more than likely last a lot longer.

              Claires also offer an ear piercing service in their stores, which is also stupidly expensive. The price does include the piercing and the jewellery, but it is still double the cost of my local tattoo studio. Claires also insist you buy a "cleaning lotion" for your ears from them, which contains hydrogen peroxide, which is actually something you should avoid putting on a new piercing or wound!! Surely Claires would have known that?

              Most Claires stores are stupidly tiny, and everything is placed everywhere, so it is like walking around a maze just to find something you like, and the staff will either pounce on you the second you walk through the door, or be no where to be seen when you need them. They seem to think every one is stealing from their store, and they try so hard to pressure you into using a basket, which makes it even harder to get around the tiny store, and all just for a pair of earrings or a bracelet?

              Some of the things in Claires are ok to buy, and if you are buying for younger teens and pre teens, most of the stuff is fine, but as you get older you realise what Claires items really are, cheap and tacky, yet overpriced and colorful. If you do shop here, take a proper look at what you are buying and consider whether it is worth the price, some of the items are, but the majority of them are not, and please do NOT allow your children to have their ears pierced in a Claires store, or have your own done.

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                06.03.2010 16:40
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                Nice!

                *** The Shop ***



                Clare's accessories sell a wide variety of products from headbands to handbags, they are very much a girls shop and I used to regularly shop in here when I was a little younger. Now I am older is still go in here from time to time as although they are for younger girls, I still buy my hair accessories from here and also earrings.



                *** The Staff ***



                The staff have a always been very friendly and are very good on their product knowledge, whenever I have been in the shop the staff know all the offers that are on and always seem to know where everything is!

                They also are very well mannered particularly in the store near me and always remember their please and thankyous.



                *** Products ***



                They sell a wide variety of accessories for all ages, they do things for young girls and lots of pretty things too that I have often bought for my niece. They also sell a lot of funky emo type accessories which is quite trendy at the moment with younger girls.

                You can pretty much get any type of accessory from claries; they also stock a wide variety of belts, scarves, makeup and bags.



                *** Prices ***



                It really depends what you are going for, as stated before I tend to buy all my headbands from here and they roughly cost £3-£4 which think is really good value. I do think that their jewellery can be a little overpriced especially as most of it is just costume jewellery.

                Quite often they have offers on a number of products such as recently they had 5 sale items for a £5 and I managed to pick up 5 lovely handbags which will suit different member of my family.

                They also usually do 3 for 2 on jewellery and as stated I like to get my earrings from here as they do nickel free ones which are a lot dearer than the normal ones but because they are specialised, I don't mind paying for them



                *** Quality ***



                The good thing I have always found with Claire's is that the products are made very well, although you do pay a little over what you would in the likes of Primark, the accessories are made much better!

                The jewellery is quite sturdy, and doesn't feel as thought its going to break in your hands.

                I have to say though that the makeup they sell just didn't do it for me, I tried some of their nail varnish which cost about £4, and it was really runny and came off very easily. Apart from that though everything else I have ever bought from there has been excellent.



                *** Final Thoughts ***



                I don't really shop here much form myself anymore, as I think I outgrew most of the products, however my niece adores things from here so I often shop here for her birthday or Christmas presents.

                I have always found the prices to be good for the quality of the products that you get, I also should mention that I actually got me ears pierced here, with no problems at all and the staff were lovely and friendly as I was scared to death!

                All in all a really good shop, and very different to most shops, but definitely a girls shop in my opinion

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                • More +
                  17.01.2010 18:37
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                  THIS IS JUST MY VIEW, MY OPINION,

                  As I have stated before, in previous reviews I love all things girly. I always wear costume jewellery and could probably stock my own store with the accessories I have collected over the years. Although when added up it comes to quite a lot of money, it is no where near the amount some women spend on gold and diamonds. So I don't feel guilty at all.

                  Claires accessories is a store that can be found on most high streets. It is a store aimed at young ladies and teenage girls. As soon as you enter its doors, you are greeted with floor to ceiling bling and glitter. All in a variety of colours and designs. There are tiaras and bright pink feather boas. A little and big girls paradise. you would think? But do you know what, even for a sparkle queen like me I can not stand Claires

                  In all the Claire stores I have been dragged into by my nine year old daughter, I always am struck by the layout of the store. It is as if they have had a meeting and decided to just dump as many accessories as they can possibly fit into the shop. This is great in theory, but in practice it is a disaster. In my experience, there is no in shop access for pushchairs which would also mean there is hardly any room for wheelchairs either. This is terrible as they have no consideration that little girls in wheelchairs like to look pretty too.

                  Another bug bear of mine with this store, is that the items high on the shelves are impossible to reach unless assistance is gained. This is another problem. The staff employed are usually teen girls who are so busy talking to each other that they can barely be bothered to help at all. There is always a poor staff to customer ratio too which means you end up waiting an eternity just to find out the price of something which you could find out yourself if it wasn't on the ceiling!!

                  On a positive note the store does hold some lovely pieces. They do stock a variety of different and unusual colours which you may not find elsewhere. Apart from jewellery they also sell makeup, hair accessories, tights and small sized false nails. I suppose it is a little girls heaven. I know I would have been an avid fan if it had been going when I was a kid. Dressing up clothes such as fairy costumes and wings are also a popular item with the girls.

                  The prices of the items in store are in my opinion quite expensive in comparison to other accessory retailers. I am always a little shocked by the prices if im honest. I tend to encourage my daughter to shop around as I have found in the past she can have a couple of really nice pieces in places such as asda or matalan which are far cheaper.

                  The average cost of a bangle in Claire will set you back aprox a fiver however in places such as asda you could have two bangles for this. The makeup in Claire's is also quite expensive in relation to places such as boots and asda. But I suppose you are paying for the status of saying in the school disco that your lipgloss is from Claires instead of smart price.

                  The quality of the goods in Claires is in my experience not too bad. It is average in terms of durability and quality, I have found in the past that the nail varnish is very good and lasts a long time. The hats and scarves on sale are also of a good quality.

                  Another service provided by Claire is the in store ear piercing. I have seen numerous signs offering this service. However I always wonder if there is another room available for this. As I would not like to think of my child having their ears pierced in a shop bursting to the seams with people and distractions. I don't like that idea at all. Someone from school sees them, calls their name, they turn and bingo they have an eyebrow pierced instead. (perhaps I am being a bit over dramatic but you get my meaning,)

                  So this is my opinion on this store, It is only my opinion and I bet there are hundreds of thousands of people who would disagree with me on this subject. Otherwise it would not be the global success it is today. I know for a fact my little girl will disagree as she loves it. But I just think that there are many ways in which this store could improve. (especially the stores layout with regards to wheelchair access,)

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