WILLIAMSVILLE, N.Y. (WIVB) – Call 4 Action has been busy working to get a local woman her money back after she was charged for cosmetic services that were never performed.

Ideal Image says it’s the nation’s leading medical spa. But Deborah Kilbourn doesn’t buy it after one appointment with the company.

“They’re a misleading company, they’re hurting their consumers, they’re all out for themselves,” Kilbourn said. “My daughter used their services for laser hair treatment, so I thought it was a great place to go to.”

Back in March, Kilbourn went to the Ideal Image location on Transit Road in Amherst for laser hair removal services. But she says workers here told her she was untreatable — not the ideal situation. She says she’s documented every twist and turn related to her situation with Ideal Image.

“Medically untreatable because as I’m older your hair is finer, thinner, maybe not tinted dark brown like more coarser, younger women’s hair would be. So, because I was older the hair is not treatable,” she said. “It was just like one thing after another.”

Still, Ideal Image ended up charging her credit card $3,700 for services and an additional $299 for a lifetime guaranteed membership, which she never ended up needing.

Kilbourn has been trying to get her money back for months, while making payments on the credit card.

“It’s frustrating because no one can be reached until at least it’s before 2 o’clock, then it’s before 2 o’clock central and then you have to talk to this one and then you have to talk to that one and everything is 24 to 48 hours to process and nothing ever, ever happened,” Kilbourn said.

Last week, News 4 emailed Ideal Image asking about Kilbourn being refunded. Just over an hour later, Ideal Image wrote us back saying she was fully refunded $4,000 the previous week.

But Kilbourn says she hasn’t received her money and instead got a service agreement to sign to get her refund. Part of that agreement, though, says she can’t talk about her story with the media — an agreement Kilbourn says she won’t sign.

“And I just feel like this needs to just stop, this company needs to be shut down and their practices need to end,” Kilbourn said. “It’s been a huge burden, it’s very stressful, but I feel like if people don’t start coming forward with things the world is never going to change, someone has to come forward, so that’s my new approach.”

According to the Ideal Image agreement Kilbourn has, the company says: “[…] we may also terminate the agreement at any time and for any reason and we will then refund you if our
medical director in his/her sole discretion determines that you are not an appropriate candidate to receive treatment services as follows: 1) if treatment services have not yet been performed, you will receive a full refund in the amount of the total service fee price we received, less $100 […]”

News 4 will stay on top of Kilbourn’s situation. According to the Better Business Bureau, more than 3,400 complaints have been filed against Ideal Image in the past three years.

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Jeff Preval is an award-winning anchor and reporter who joined the News 4 team in December 2021. See more of his work here.