YouTube sensation Zoella has been fiercely criticised for an advent calendar which costs a whopping £50 and only has 12 doors.
Boots were forced to cut the price of the “Zoella 12 Days of Christmas Advent Calendar” after substantial numbers of customers vented their frustrations it was extortionate. The retailer will now be selling the Christmas calendar at the reduced price of £25 from 16 November.
The calendar contains a cookie cutter, a small pack of confetti, a packet of seven stickers, a star-shaped cookie cutter, a small bag, a 130g “Festive Cookie” candle, a 30ml “Christmas Clementine” room spray, a pen, a fluffy key ring, a gingerbread man-shaped cookie cutter, a mini notepad and a 130g “Cosy Christmas” candle.
The entire contents of the advent calendar, which is being sold at Boots and has received an overall rating of one and a half stars so far, can be purchased for about £20 separately.
Critics on Twitter questioned why the advent calendar cost so much given it was targeted at children.
“Don’t get me wrong, I adore Zoella’s videos but it breaks my heart a little seeing that she’s charging £50 for an advent calendar. Again I know she might not set the prices, but her target audience who would buy these don’t have £50 to spend on an advent calendar!” said one.
“Zoella’s £50 advent calendar that is only 12 days long is just further proof she is a Tory,” quipped one.
“Zoella is a perfect example of people deliberately using their platforms for nothing other than to give themselves a bigger pay cheque every month. £50 for a poorly designed 12 day cheap advent calendar is an insult to anyone who has ever supported her,” said another.
But others argued the 27-year-old vlogger, who has over 11 million subscribers to her YouTube channel, had no influence on the price tag of the advent calendar and sought to defend her.
“She said in her new vlog that she was really upset and frustrated that they set it at that price, you obviously don’t know Zoe otherwise you would have known that shes never in it just for the money,” said one.
Another said: “All the drama over the Zoella advent calendar is rather ridiculous to be honest. If you don’t agree with the price don’t buy it simple, no point moaning over it.”
A spokesperson for Zoella Lifestyle said the YouTube star, whose real name is Zoe Sugg, was not involved in pricing.
“Zoe is incredibly proud of the Christmas collection and excited to see it in store,” the spokesperson said. “However, the pricing and in store promotional strategy of the collection, including the calendar, is at the control of third parties and is not set by Zoe.”
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“We are sorry to hear that the price of the Zoella 12 Days of Christmas Advent Calendar has disappointed a number of customers, we always listen to feedback,” a spokesperson for Boots told Digital Spy.
“We will be offering the product at half price during our Christmas promotion, where the calendar will be on sale for £25.00 from Thursday 16th November.
“The Zoella lifestyle advent calendar is full of 12 exclusive treats which are all clearly listed on boots.com and cannot be purchased separately.”
Zoella has been criticised in the past for consumer products which are emblazoned with her name and branding, with people arguing they are not good value for money.
The YouTuber launched a fashion and beauty vlog in 2009 and has become famed for her slickly produced videos – a 21 minute breakdown of her unpacking a Boots carrier bag has clocked up well over three million views.
What’s more, her book Girl Online became the fastest selling debut novel ever when it was released in 2014. Zoella has harnessed a loyal fanbase alongside her boyfriend and fellow YouTuber Alfie Deyes. The pair, who share the moniker of ‘Zalfie’, are among the most influential YouTubers and have forged a multi-million pound YouTube empire together.