You’ve found the perfect action figure, prop replica, or statue at an unbeatable price, but when it shows up, you discover it’s not as you expected. An ugly scratch… a bent, broken, or missing plastic accessory… a crushed bubble… a price sticker slapped haphazardly over a display box window…
For many consumers, damage and defects like these are no big deal, especially if the item’s designed for kids. It’s a toy, right? Who cares if it or its package isn’t in mint condition?
Collectors, that’s who!
It can be frustrating to spend your hard-earned cash on something that isn’t in the best shape possible.
Coin collectors first struck the term “mint condition.” They wanted their metal currency to be as new and fresh as when it left the mint where it was made.
It wasn’t long before the term “mint” became the gold standard for other collectible items as well. It’s synonymous with “as new,” “undamaged,” and “perfect.” Collectors use “mint” to mean the item is in the best possible condition, with all its pieces, and in its intact original packaging.
Grading condition below “mint” is a subjective art. Classifications range from “near mint” (which means almost, but not quite, as new) to “very good” (which means the item is used but well cared for and intact) to “very poor” (which means exactly what you’d expect it to mean).
But at Entertainment Earth, “mint” means the items we sell and their packaging meet objective and exacting standards.
Almost anything you purchase loses some value the moment you buy it. Think about that new car you drove off the lot.
With a few exceptions, collectible merchandise is no different, but the closer the item stays to the shape it was in when it was brand new, the more desirable it remains and the more value it retains.
Loose action figures and other toys freed from their original card backs and other packaging and worn (gently or otherwise) may have sentimental value, but most don’t command the same prices as items mint in package.
If value retention is important to you as a collector – whether you plan to resell at some point or give your collection as a gift, or you simply want the satisfaction of knowing you’ve gotten what you paid for – rest assured that the mint condition items you purchase from Entertainment Earth retain value.
When you’re shopping for vintage collectibles, you’ll have a harder time finding items in mint condition because time has passed, and especially because toys have been opened and played with (as they were designed to be).
But even brand-new merchandise in mint condition is difficult to come by.
Most merchandise is made in China. Unlike electronics, computers, or consumer appliances, manufacturers package toys in cardboard or corrugated boxes, “cases,” without additional padding or foam.
These cases travel on a ship across the stormy Pacific before arriving in port cities like Seattle, Washington or Long Beach, California, where workers toss them onto trucks bound for a manufacturer’s domestic warehouse. There, other workers sort the cases and pitch them onto new trucks for delivery to wholesale or retail warehouses.
No one along the delivery route cares about the condition of the toys’ packaging… but we do!
The products Entertainment Earth sells may have a small scratch or dent on the window box, or a slight crease in the cardboard. This perfectly normal, negligible damage indicates the entire batch – thousands of units – is in exactly the same condition or worse. Our Mint Condition Guarantee™ means the items we ship to you will be in the best condition possible. You won’t find your item in better condition anywhere.
Our Mint Condition Guarantee™ means you can be sure the in-stock action figures, bobbleheads, Pop! figures, and statues you order from us meet the following criteria:
- No non-original products – Everything we sell is original, in its original packaging, and (if needed) officially licensed.
- No defects – We inspect every item before we ship it. If we find any defect, we won’t send it. And we won’t try to sell it to anyone else without clearly describing it as “Not Mint” and lowering the price accordingly.
- No blemishes – We only sell items in packaging that looks its best. That means you’ll find no price tags, security stickers, UPC stickers, or any other labels or hole punches on our items’ packaging (unless it comes from another retailer – a situation we always call attention to in our item descriptions).
- No shipping damage – If a shipping carrier damages your item while it’s in transit to you, we’ll replace it.
- No removed rarities – We guarantee that we do not remove rare items or variations from our products. We ship you the exact product the manufacturer sends us and never do anything to reduce your item’s aftermarket value.
Anytime an item doesn’t measure up to these Mint Condition Guarantee™ standards, we clearly state so in our descriptions.
Not Mint items are “retail store quality” and may have bent, damaged, or creased packaging. The product itself is in perfect condition unless otherwise noted. Also, whenever we can’t sell a complete set because some items in it aren’t in mint condition, we’ll offer the individual items as “Not Mint.” Our Not Mint items are excellent opportunities for you to acquire individual figures or other items normally sold only in sets or full cases, at a discount.
Does the Mint Condition Guarantee™ Apply to Pre-Orders?
Because we accept orders for items well in advance of their release, we can’t predict the condition in which they’ll arrive at our warehouse. If the condition isn’t collector grade when it arrives, we’ll post that condition on our website and still ship the item.
What If a Product I Buy Arrives and It’s Not Mint?
You can contact us about any item’s condition. If a product reaches you in not-mint condition, we’ll work with you to determine if the shipping carrier caused the damage. Whether it did or not, send the damaged item back to us and we’ll replace it if it is still available. If not, we’ll refund your money. Please read our Return Policy for more information.
Does the Mint Condition Guarantee™ Apply to Everything Entertainment Earth Sells?
Our Mint Condition Guarantee™ doesn’t apply to:
- Items labeled “Not Mint” in the product name, item number, or product description
- Gift items
- Housewares and home decor
- Plush items
- Perishable items
- Custom-made art or other custom-made items
Our Mint Condition Guarantee™ doesn’t extend to sales to affiliates, affiliate stores, retail partners, wholesale customers, or retail clients who receive discounted pricing. We will ship full cases of toys, action figures, figurines, and other items and inspect them to ensure mint-quality packaging, but we will not replace individual not-mint pieces. Damaged cases with clear shipping damage will be claimed with the shipping carrier and replaced, if possible. Sales to affiliates, affiliate stores, retail partners, and wholesale customers are final.
Selling and Shipping Only the Best to You
Our Mint Condition Guarantee™ gives you confidence the action figures, toys, statues, bobbleheads, and other merchandise you get from Entertainment Earth deserve a place in your collection among the objects that represent your interests and enthusiasms, even your dreams. They’ve been inspected by collectors who share your passion for pop-culture collectibles and will be valuable pieces you’ll enjoy for years to come.