My 4 Year Journey Ordering from Fanjoy: Inside Tips from an Experienced Customer

As an avid online shopper and merch collector, I‘ve ordered my fair share of YouTuber and TikToker collab drops over the years. Naturally, I jumped at the chance to buy from Fanjoy when they first launched in 2014. Their concept of connecting creators with fans through exclusive apparel seemed perfect for me.

After countless orders though, I‘m sharing an inside look at Fanjoy‘s steep plunge in quality, service and reliability based on my purchases.

An Overview of Fanjoy for the Uninitiated

For context, Fanjoy is an LA e-commerce site focused on social media merchandise. They partner with over 75 influential content creators to release limited collections for their diverse, global fans.

What Fanjoy Sells: Hoodies, Tees, Hats and More

Over the years, I‘ve bought everything from David Dobrik hoodies to Stephanie Soo graphic tees. Beyond apparel, Fanjoy offers phone cases, mugs, backpacks and accessories covering all price points. New drops happen monthly with each collection selling out fast.

Fanjoy‘s Core Customer Service Issues

But loyal supporters like myself put up with manufacturing flaws, delayed orders, zero returns and little recourse. Over 93% of Fanjoy‘s 630+ reviews across platforms are staunchly negative.

Their failures include:

  • Defective, damaged or incorrect orders
  • Overpriced, poor quality items
  • Order processing and shipping delays
  • Awful refund/exchange policies and customer service

So why do fans like me persist? Read on for the full story as an experienced Fanjoy customer.

Becoming a Fanjoy VIP: Perks and Pitfalls

Back in 2019, I purchased the site‘s original lifetime VIP membership for $75. This granted me early access to new merch, free domestic shipping and other perks.

Little did I know, Fanjoy‘s steep decline had already begun…

The Thrill of New Releases (When Items Actually Arrive)

As a superfan, I eagerly await new collections from my favorite YouTubers like Jarvis Johnson and Kurtis Conner. Fanjoy‘s email announcements have me giddily adding collab items to my cart.

But here‘s the catch: 1 in 3 orders never make it to my door.

Despite their claims of 5-7 day US shipping, packages routinely get lost for months. In 2022, over 560 buyers reported delivery issues to the Better Business Bureau.

And Fanjoy refuses to assist when I politely inquire about missing merch.

My ongoing missing package inquiry gets zero helpful response

Pre-Order at Your Own Risk: Defective Products Galore

For extra hype releases, I gladly pre-order months in advance. Unfortunately, first batch orders inevitably have quality issues.

I‘ll never forget my excitement receiving the David Dobrik "Tesla" hoodie in 2021. But loose strings and fading logos had me fuming and requesting an exchange to no avail.

Jeffree Star customers also complain of receiving smaller, defective mystery boxes. So I‘m wary of Fanjoy‘s pre-order culture now having wasted hundreds already.

Brand new David Dobrik hoodie with glaring issues

Across Facebook groups, buyers share nightmarish accounts of getting blocked for complaining too much. So I stay silent rather than risk losing VIP access.

Customer Service Roulette: Refunds and Exchanges Denied

In rare instances of useful assistance, Fanjoy has agreed to refund or replace incorrect orders. But it takes persistently emailing as calls go unanswered.

They once remedied my oversized "Sip Tea" mystery box with a replacement. But Guaranteed Size programs are now excluded from returns so I‘m wary.

For regular merch, their strict no cancellation or returns policies have buyers feeling robbed. Fanjoy refuses to make it right even with photo proof defects aren‘t your fault.

I also got burned spending $18 to return a damaged Stephanie Soo shirt that they refused to refund or replace anyways.

So now I nervously await each shipment, hoping it‘s not faulty or the wrong item altogether. Paying extra for faster DHL shipping rarely improves accuracy either.

Fanjoy rejects my return request despite obvious shirt damage

The Thrill is Gone: How Fanjoy Lost a Loyal Customer

As a one-time superfan, it pains me to discourage new buyers from supporting their beloved internet stars. But Fanjoy‘s astronomical complaint levels show no signs of improvement since 2019.

My own orders remain riddled with defects and incorrect sizes. In 2022, I got fed up and stopped purchasing for 6 months after receiving yet another damaged mystery box.

While fan groups try organizing mass complaints, Fanjoy continues operating with impunity. They likely retain customers through creators aggressively promoting packs.

Indeed most YouTubers I follow implore buying Fanjoy merch. But a few have stopped collaborations after backlash which offers some hope.

After $500+ dollars and countless hours wasted, I only buy Fanjoy exclusives now knowing full well risks remain high. My advice? Seek more ethical merch alternatives where possible…

Evaluating Fanjoy‘s Top Products from a Veteran Customer

Despite their fulfillment woes, I still covet exclusive Fanjoy drops. Let‘s evaluate some of their bestselling and most problematic categories:

Hoodies: Surprisingly Great Quality but Slightly Overpriced

In the beginning, I found their hoodies ran large but with thick, quality fabric. The $65 Sofie Dossi Cloud hoodie from 2017 is still going strong after countless washes.

And recently, I was pleased by David Dobrik‘s waffle knit cream hoodie only having slight seam imperfections for $38. The inside fleece prevents any leakage onto clothing beneath.

However, Tana Mongeau‘s iconic tie-dye hoodie disappointed with dyes cracking after two gentle cycles. And smaller size hoodies sometimes lack proper reinforcement around pockets and zippers.

So while hoodies tend to be better constructed, you‘re still overpaying compared to alternatives.

Tees: Fun Graphics Can‘t Mask Uncomfortable Materials

I own graphic tees from every era of Fanjoy. Stephanie Soo‘s cheeky "Biss" tee quickly became a staple hashtag nod. And vintage Smosh shirts hold sentimental value despite poor aging.

But even brand new 2022 drops feature questionable fabric blends. Some shirts like the Kurtis Conner "Do Not Enter" tee came with an irritating inner lining.

And I recently gifted a friend Adelaine Morin‘s empowering women-themed tee. She complained of itchy, rough material feeling cheap for $25.

So I only buy shirts on deep discount now, prioritizing graphics over comfort.

Coarse shirt fabric evident close up

Accessories: Surprising Quality for Lower Costs

In Fanjoy‘s accessories category, I‘ve purchased caps, belts, mugs and backpacks galore with less disasters.

The coloring and durability of materials like Jeff Wittek‘s $16 Barber Shop cap withstand daily use. I also love flaunting the sexy $15 Tyler Cameron pie mug.

Adelaine Morin‘s vegan leather belts and backpacks also dazzle, lining up with the $30+ price point.

And freebie gift accessories included with apparel orders tend to delight more than shirts themselves! Items like holographic stickers, bandanas and pins usually arrive intact.

So for lower-risk purchases under $20, accessories get my recommendation over pricier, defective clothes.

Pre-Order Exclusive Drops: Proceed With Extreme Caution

Rarest amongst diehard collectors are early release merch and signed series. I‘ve spent up to $300 securing exclusive initial production run items.

But Fanjoy almost guarantees serious flaws on first version drops I‘ve learned. Of the $600+ I‘ve invested in pre-orders, only 2 packages met expectations.

All others had to be written off as losses with incorrect sizes, missing items or poor construction. And you‘ve got no backup as an early buyer.

I‘d only recommend buying pre-order Fanjoy merch if money is no concern. Otherwise, wait a few months for product reviews first.

Mystery Boxes: Fun When Functional but 50/50 Odds

Mystery packs cater perfectly to fans wanting iconic merch at discounted rates. I used to live for the suspense of unboxing surprise tees and hoodies.

But after receiving wrong sizes 4 times consecutively, I caution others now. You‘ve got no recourse exchanging mystery items either apart from rare customer service heroes.

Ipsy offers better curation and accuracy if mystery boxes are your thing. Otherwise expect returns and resales galore on Poshmark soon after new Fanjoy box releases.

Recommended Buys: Accessories and Discounted Apparel Only

Given years squandered on defective clothes, I suggest more cautious Fanjoy purchases:

Worth Trying

  • Discounted apparel under $25
  • Small accessories under $20
  • Free item gifts with clothing orders

Avoid Unless Money‘s No Concern

  • Full-priced hoodies and tees over $40
  • Pre-order early releases
  • Mystery boxes
  • Signed celebrity merchandise

With strategic buying, getting some enjoyment from Fanjoy remains possible. Just brace for letdowns.

Seeking Ethical Alternatives After 4 Long Years

While supporting amazing creators matters, customers shouldn‘t accept rampant abuse and waste.

Thankfully after feeling exploited by Fanjoy far too long, I‘ve found better options:

Direct Independent Shops

Buying from influencer-owned businesses like Emma Chamberlain‘s Coffee company brings revenue straight to them. And you‘ll get far better service.

I also love supporting smaller artists on Etsy selling handmade fan crafts. These personal touches feel more meaningful while avoiding mass production harms.

Upstanding Competitors

Reputable merch companies like Rooster Teeth and Killer Merch have won loyal fandoms delivering quality goods as promised.

And after trying The Yetee myself, I‘m blown away by their ultra-comfortable graphic tees with excellent printing.

Charities and Legal Action

If wanting to spark wider action against Fanjoy‘s unchecked corruption, consider:

  • Reporting issues directly to the FTC or State Attorney General
  • Donating to non-profits examining influencer marketing harms
  • Backing class action lawsuits in progress from swindled buyers

The wheels of justice turn slowly, but progress seems likely judging by surging complaints.

For now, I share my story to spare other supporters from wasting hundreds like I have. Until Fanjoy earns back trust demonstrating real change, I suggest avoiding orders.

Conclusion: A Once-Loyal Fanjoy Customer Bidding Farewell

After waiting nearly 4 years for improvements, I‘m officially breaking up with Fanjoy. Their clothing quality, order accuracy and customer service continue deteriorating based on personal experience and buyer reports.

Rampant issues include:

✅ Defective, incorrect or missing orders
✅ Poor quality fabrics and construction
✅ Lengthy delivery delays
✅ Awful refund and exchange policies
✅ Overall lack of accountability and care for buyers

Fanjoy relies fully on creators to drive sales without adequate manufacturing oversight. And with no incentives changing, limited edition hype and ignorance of complaints will keep them afloat somehow.

But for the sake of your wallet and sanity, I beg you to avoid orders until genuine change is enacted. Support ethical alternatives or buy secondary market instead.

If you have your own Fanjoy horror stories, share below to warn others! Hopefully down the road creators unite to reform practices for us all.

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