Closing charges up readers

Dear Readers: The letter about department stores CLOSING CUSTOMERS’ CHARGE ACCOUNTS for inactivity hit a nerve. Here are just a few of the many reader responses:

Erin and Rebecca said, “If you keep your balance at zero, the store is not collecting interest or finance charges.”

Betty wrote: “The company is making a power play. Managing the bottom line is important for business, but this threatening letter is a low-level business practice.”

Bobbye said: “I had the same experience, but mine wasn’t by a letter; I found out my account was closed when I was making a purchase. Talk about embarrassing!”

Readers, thank you for the feedback. Unless you get some benefit from a store card, you really don’t need one. All major stores take national credit cards. Why get aggravated when you don’t need to?

— Heloise

AUTO SUNSHADE

Dear Heloise: I keep a long-handled ice scraper in my car in the summer to prop up the sunshade over the passenger side of the windshield. I love reading your hints in the Roswell (N.M.) Daily Record. — Charmaine M., Roswell, N.M.

Charmaine, you just taught me something! I hate that floppy sunshade! Say hi to everyone in Roswell for me. I had such a wonderful time when I was there to speak at the library event. Invite me back!

— Hugs, Heloise

MAKEUP HINTS

Dear Heloise: Here are some of my favorite makeup hints I’ve learned over the years:

* I blot my face with a tissue between moisturizer, primer, foundation and powder. It absorbs extra product, so there’s a less cakey appearance.

* Warming a hard eyeliner pencil between my fingers softens it so there are fewer harsh lines.

* When I’m done, I take a step back and look in the mirror to get the whole “picture,” and many times see that my eye shadow or blush may be a little too much.

— Antoinette B. in California

Readers, do you open your mouth to apply mascara? I do, and don’t know why. Anyone?

— Heloise

NO-MESS ICE FOR COOLER

Dear Heloise: I make ice for a small cooler by freezing water in small plastic food-storage bags and laying them flat in the freezer. The cooler will not have water in the bottom as the ice melts, and you can reuse the bags. — Ruth in North Canton, Ohio

EMAIL PROBLEM

Dear Heloise: When I find a product I really like, I use it for a few years, and then it’s discontinued on every store shelf in town! I go online, only to find that I have to sign up and build a file with my email address so they can fill up my email with offers and sales on almost a daily basis!

It’s either live with it, or do without a product you really like. ARGH!

— Darlynn in Salem, Ore.

Open a “dummy” email account that you use ONLY for internet sites such as you described. The unwanted email goes there! — Heloise (BJack(at)whocares.com)

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Send a money-saving or timesaving hint to Heloise, P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, TX 78279-5000, or you can fax it to 1-210-HELOISE or email it to Heloise(at)Heloise.com.