Mary Kay Cosmetics: Destroying Half a Million Women a Year

To many, my fight against Mary Kay Cosmetics is puzzling. Why would I want to waste my time with it? After all, they’re only selling lipstick. It’s a harmless company started by a little old lady 45 years ago who wanted to give women an opportunity.

WRONG! Mary Kay Inc. is anything but harmless, and that’s why it’s so important for me to continue to educate people about the company. They are running a scam that brings in $2 billion in sales to headquarters each year.

Where does this money come from? Often from those who can least afford it. The name of the game is recruiting and frontloading. Bring her in and get her to buy an inventory package of $600 to $4800 right away. (If she doesn’t buy within the first couple of weeks, the chances that she will buy anything at all go down exponentially.)

Start with the largest package and work your way down. All the while, tell the new Mary Kay consultant that she can’t be successful without a “full store” of products. Tell her that if she wants to be at “profit level” and really start bringing in money for her family, she needs a lot of products. After all, you can’t sell from an empty wagon!

Mary Kay is a recruiting scheme. The vast majority of the products sold to the consultants is never resold to an actual customer. Is it because the consultants really don’t try to sell? No! It’s because the products are of mediocre quality and are overpriced. Besides that, women have oodles of choices on the internet and in the stores. There’s just no need to go through the hassle of dealing with a Mary Kay lady, especially when you know that she’ll eventually try to recruit you and never let up!

Here are some numbers and facts that I pulled together for Pink Truth, my consumer education site about Mary Kay. Word on the street is that recruiting figures are way down in the past year, but the below numbers are the most recently reported numbers from Mary Kay Inc.

From Pink Truth:

I thought it would be interesting to take a look at some real figures regarding Mary Kay and consultant turnover. We often hear pro-Mary Kay women (and their brainwashed husbands) rave that there are millions of women who have had wonderful experiences as consultants, so the company must be fantastic.

Now here’s my theory. Are women quitting Mary Kay because it was everything they wanted and more, and because they were making money doing it? Or do they quit because they are dissatisfied and are not making money? I submit to you that the reason women quit being independent beauty consultants for Mary Kay Cosmetics is by and large because of failure in the business.

I do understand that some may be perfectly happy in Mary Kay, but quit because of family circumstances or other reasons. I’m just saying that the vast majority likely quit due to a negative experience.

Over time, Mary Kay has been increasing its beauty consultant count. Now it’s important to note that this is the count of consultants at any given time, such as the year end total. The number disclosed by Mary Kay does NOT include all the women who may have come and gone during the year. Mary Kay simply picks a point in time and says “Today we have X consultants.”

In the United States, there were 500,000 consultants in 2001. In 2005, that number was 715,000. Worldwide the numbers have been growing quite a bit faster. (Hence the push to open new markets like India and the Czech Republic.) In 2002, there were 950,000 consultants worldwide. In 2005, that number was 1.6 million.

Here’s where it gets interesting and where we find out the truth about the number of consultants that Mary Kay Cosmetics churns each year. I’m using United States figures below, because of the disclosures that Mary Kay made last year.

In 2006, Mary Kay disclosed that the company had over 700,000 independent beauty consultants in the United States. This was similar to the 2005 reported figure of 715,000 consultants in the United States. This implies that at the current time, the number of consultants is staying relatively stable. (i.e. For every consultant recruited, one drops out.)

Mary Kay stated in its response to the FTC’s proposed Business Opportunity Rule , that there are 2,400,000 “disclosure opportunities” (meaning interviews) per year. That’s 200,000 women interviewed per month. Mary Kay Cosmetics further stated that there are 40,000 new recruits per month. (Thank God those other 160,000 per month said no… a total of two million women per year who turn Mary Kay down.)

At 40,000 new recruits per month…

That means that during 2006, Mary Kay Inc. recruited 480,000 women in the United States, and 480,000 women in the United States quit. Add the 480,000 quitters to the 700,000 (or so) U.S. consultants on the books at the end of the year, and we’ve got a total of 1,180,000 (yes that’s over 1 million) women in the United States who were “in” Mary Kay at some point during 2006.

What a staggering churn rate, though, isn’t it? Depending upon how you look at it… 41% of the 1,180,000 involved during the year quit. Or of those 700,000 on the books at the end of the year, 69% of them will quit in the following year. 480,000 women churned and burned in 2006.

During 2007, Mary Kay will burn through another 500,000 American women. And in 2008, they’ll burn through another 500,000. And so on every year….

Mary Kay, destroying half a million women’s lives every year.

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635 Comments

  • MF04 says:
    5 May 2008

    I don’t understand why people write such negative things about this company. I have been with Mary Kay for 1.5 years and I am very proud of it. I think the people that dislike the company are the ones who gave up and quit because they failed to put the effort in. People want the get rich quick method, and if they don’t get there quick enough, they quit. With any job, you have to work hard for what you want. I am sorry for the ones who chose to give up. I truly believe this is a fantastic, positive company that I am so proud to be a part of and I know I will be successful with it.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 May 2008

    99% of women who get involved with Mary Kay lose money. Do you think they’re all lazy losers who didn’t try? Or do you think just maybe there’s a problem with the MK system? You sound like you really need some pink truth! http://www.pinktruth.com

  • MF04 says:
    5 May 2008

    I am sorry but I respectfully disagree. I would never call anyone a lazy loser. I do not presume to know what anyone’s personal situation is. Not everyone joins Mary Kay for the money. But I do know this company works and I am very proud to stand behind it. I have seen pinktruth and think that is sad that people who want nothing to do with Mary Kay spend their time writing about it. I choose not to expose myself to such negativity. That’s fine you choose not to like Mary Kay, but everyone is entitled to form their own opinion. ~

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 May 2008

    Well you may not have used those words, but it was close when you said “… the ones who gave up and quit because they failed to put the effort in.”

    And I’ll tell you why I spend my time writing about Mary Kay: Because the scam needs to be exposed. Enough women have lost enough money. Women need to know that they’re getting into nothing more than a pyramid scheme… throwing away money that could be used to feed their families. Enough!

  • Darlene says:
    5 May 2008

    Tracy, I have been in Mary Kay for 9 years, recruited by my neighbor who never went to anything with me. Fortunate for me I am a self starter. I have been #1 in sales and recruiting for all of my 9 years within my unit. WHY? Because I work the business like a business. I never tell women to order inventory they cannot afford, I don’t recruit women who are on the verge of welfare because that would be asking too much of them. I think quite a few women in MK have ruined the reputation of our wonderful company. It is chrisitan based, but not everyone that joins is of christian mentality. People lie, cheat and steal. I have made a choice to not work as hard as I would need to make directorship, however I have a car thru MK and yes its hard making production every month, especially if I don’t sell product. Yes I have chosen to use my own savings to make production for car, is that a choice? YES, I made that choice the company did not make me do that. I think a lot of what is being said is of personal choice. No one can twist someone’s arm and make them order inventory and YES it is important to have product on your shelf or women will go to the mall and purchase their makeup and skin care their.. I don’t agree that our product is overpriced and not good, oh my gosh if you only knew the skin I have changed for the better with this product that other products they were using did not work. I understand where your coming from, I really do but everything good and bad needs to be disclosed. This is about choices and some are encouraged to make poor choices and some good.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 May 2008

    Sadly, Mary Kay is far more bad than it is good. That’s why it’s so important to expose it. Ever hear of a wolf in sheep’s clothing? This company has been flying under the radar far too long. It’s got a deceptive and destructive business model. Thank goodness for the internet so we at Pink Truth can educate consumers before they sign up for this money loser!

  • Karin says:
    5 May 2008

    To generalize this company as being “all bad” is fallacious. Mary Kay is a network marketing company, meaning we are each responsible for our own successes or failures. As with anything else in this world, you are going to have a few abusers of the system. However, in comparison with other companies out there, (especially in network marketing/direct sales) MK is closer to the good side than the bad side. You certainly have the right to your opinion and you have obviously not been happy with your experience. I have been an Independent Beauty Consultant for over 11 years and have never experienced the “wrongs” you have obviously encountered. I am sorry that happened to you but taking your experience, generalizing it, and then using that to misrepresent what I do is insulting. I am educated, knowledgeable about my product as well as the industry, and my customers find value in my services. I am also very proud of my team. You can twist my words (as you have above) and put a negative spin on this if you want, but I urge you to allow another point of view to stand. A person cannot make an educated opinion of her own without understanding both sides of the story.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 May 2008

    Mary Kay has been telling “their” side of the story for 45 years. It’s time that we stand up for women who need the REST OF THE STORY. Karin, you may be insulted by my words, but I am insulted that you would recruit women into this scam. Pink Truth is not based upon my own experience. It is based on the experiences of the HUNDREDS OF THOUSANDS of women who have visited the site since it was started almost two years ago. There are thousands of stories on the site about the pyramid scheme that is Mary Kay. I hope you’re not proud that 99% of women in Mary Kay lose money? I hope you’re not proud of the fact that the women you recruit into this scam have almost no chance of turning a profit?

  • Lazy Gardens says:
    5 May 2008

    Darlene said: “Yes I have chosen to use my own savings to make production for car, is that a choice?”

    How much money have you spent to keep “the car” … and what kind of a car could you have bought and owned outright with that money?

  • ttp says:
    5 May 2008

    No matter what you call it, direct selling, dual level marketing, or network marketing, MLM is MLM. It is a flawed system designed to fail 90% of participants. Darlene is buying her “free” car each month to maintain the illusion of success. What else is illusion? MK is not all it seems. I urge you to dare to see beyond the fluffy kumbaya. Do some research. All is not what it seems.

  • Teresa says:
    6 May 2008

    Darlene said: “No one can twist someone’s arm and make them order inventory ..”

    Of course not BUT how many times have you been asked to *Stretch*, *Be a Team Player*, and *Invest in your Business* – Remember *Stars drive Cars* ladies!

    Frontloading – call it what you want – but it is what it is.

  • bluepink says:
    6 May 2008

    I was in MK for over 5 yrs before I quit as a Future Director. I defended MK tooth and nail in the begining, I was making around $200-300 per week and grew a nice client base. But as the yrs passed I realized I lost more than I gained. As a Director your expenses are higher, so you really have to recruit weekly and front load like crazy if you want to make any kind of money, and in no way is it an executive income. I was in the top 10 list in my unit and national area of recruiting and sales, so I didn’t suck at the business, I quit because I couldn’t lie and manipulate women anymore. So many were losing money, over charging on their cards to make production or win cheap prizes and attention is sad and pathetic and it needs to stop. My Cadillac winning director also realized how brainwashed we were and how little MK Corp cares about sales to the end consumer, only selling inventory packages to new consultants, which is where units makes their real money!
    So for you newbees, of course MK is fun and the ladies seem nice and seem to care, but as time goes on and the higher the ladder you go, you find out the real truth about this scam, so the sooner you get out, the less debt you’ll have, the less hurt you’ll be. I’m sure you ladies are not stupid, you were just lied to like me and emotionally manipulated. Do your research and make the choice that is right for you and your family!

  • Wearied Pink says:
    7 May 2008

    It took almost 15 years and 5 cars, offspring, and top ten area standing to finally wake up to the wreckage and havoc that Mary Kay’s “system” hides from the lower Consultant sales force. The name of the production game is new recruits and star orders. We have been reduced to applauding “high weeks” of 200-400 Bucks…and meeting attendance down to 3 to 5 women. No matter how long you are in, if you care about the debt building for your people, you wont be able to pull orders. If you don’t care…you will manage to maintain. Contests and promo’s are out of control all trying to get another order out of someone regardless whether they have been able to sell. Customers cancel appointments and do not reschedle, so recruting is all anyone cares about. To recruit, you have to lie about conditions and your own personal success rate. It is sick. And Nobody talks about it because it is “negative”. That is the insiders view of the Mary Kay opportunity.

  • i love pink says:
    9 May 2008

    MaryKay is like any other company that you might own!! You might have to put lots of money forward to get it started!! And the only way your going to make the money back is by working hard, selling, marketing and recruiting ….on average in the united states all businesses within the first year LOSE money!! I was looking into starting my own business and i realized how much i was going to have to put into it, rent for a building, products, employees…. with marykay i didnt have to worry about that…Also some people may make it in the business and some people may not… its like applying for any other job, if you dont have skills in the position your applying for then need not apply…. alot of people may want to try it and realize sales is not one of there best qualities or maybe after they start they realize they dont have enough time to put into it….If your going to gang up on marykay then why not gang up on every other self employed company…. you negative people just need Something to complain about…. everyone can makes there own choices…. i just wish with all this passion you guys have to bash this company, you guys could be using it for something good…. like feeding starving children or rebuilding houses in New Orleans… theres soo much more important things out there……. open your eyes to the REAL problems of this world…… lifes to short to complain….. at least thats what my mom always tells me!!!

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    9 May 2008

    I’m not a guy, buy I’m going to answer you anyway. Wanna hear something GOOD we’ve done? We’ve gotten $1 million back in the hands of women who were scammed by Mary Kay. NOW THAT IS GOOD!

  • MaryKay CrackHeads says:
    10 May 2008

    My mom was in mary kay in the late 80’s early 90’s – My mom is not bright, but fortunately my dad went to harvard. I have done well, very well. My mom never sold shiznit and tried with her socializing skills to do so. We had a house full of mary kay crap that she ended up giving away or disposing. What a total joke.

    Those posters above who support Mary Kay sound like the classic MLM brainwashed, giving money to “make the car” – you poor pathetic souls. Being self employed with your own business is not the same as being a tool within an MLM system. Self-Employed folks don’t buy massive inventory to start – there is no need to do so when working as a service consultant.

    Think about it – you might need -maybe- 100$ worth of product to demonstrate to others. Anything more than that and it is a pure outright scam. MK should be -giving you- inexpensive sales and demonstration kits.

    Please, don’t be another suckah !

  • Michele says:
    13 May 2008

    Mary Kay is a business that works. It teaches women about running a business and the many things that go into that. It offers women the opportunity to try a dream and dream big — then wake up and do the work necessary to make the dream come true. It won’t for everyone. But for many it does bring in an extra $200, $500, $1,000 a month, easily and generally while having a good time.
    Women learn about themselves while doing this. They hear it’s simple, but they didn’t realize is it’s not easy . It’s hardly easy for anyone at first. You run out of family fast and learn which friends are committed to you. But there’s a plan, help available. Women have to decide whether they are willing to take the next step, then the next one.
    Sometimes you just want to try something new. Or be with new, positive people. Sometimes you want to believe in something. Or believe in yourself. Enter Mary Kay. It can work. It can change lives — positively.

    I don’t understand exactly why someone wants to trash a company that inspires women, offers them training, opportunity and support. Then, if they feel they can’t or don’t want to do it, it gives them 90% of their investment back if they want out. Try that on your own; start a business without a mother company.
    I’m sorry for those of you who didn’t come across the good pink people. I’m sorry they believe that a company paying more women in the U.S. $100,000 or more a year than any other company is somehow a scam. Learn what a pyramid scheme is; this isn’t it. Learn about ability to move up corporately and how that works — and doesn’t work.
    It is possible that I may never drive a pink Cadillac, but the company has an awesome set up and great opportunities as well as philosophies and beliefs for success.
    Blessings to the other pink women out there willing to strive for something more, something different, something bigger.
    Good luck to all you negative sourpusses out there, too. May something come along to brighten your spirits and end your distribution of doom and gloom.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    14 May 2008

    It’s important to speak out against Mary Kay because of lies like these spread by Michelle. The lie about “more women making $100k” is pure fiction. The number of women actually making money in Mary Kay is pathetically low. 99% of women lose money in MK. That’s not helping them, and that’s not positive. Mary Kay doesn’t help anyone except the owners of the company. And http://www.pinktruth.com will continue to expose that.

  • CC says:
    14 May 2008

    Until recently, I myself was a MK Consultant for about four years. What I learned about being involved in Mary Kay is that the story told to new consultants by our directors is both fact and fiction. For example:

    1. Fact – you can make money with Mary Kay. However, it’s just not by selling the product. It’s through recruiting more MK Consultants and producing your own training materials or other products (think print materials like fliers, little pink baggies, etc.) that can be sold to other MK participants at MK events. After all, what are NSDs really? Motivational speakers that sure in the heck are not toting around a demo kit to make their money. They simply sell you stuff at career conference and other events telling you how you could sell MK stuff to supposedly make your money.

    2. Fiction – you can drive a “free” company car. The car is not free. Let’s just face it ladies. The last time I checked, you would need about $96,000 in wholesale (or about $192,000 in retail) production over a 4 month period in order to drive a leased (no, not actually yours as in you own it) pink Cadillac. A Cadillac Escalade is only about $50K outright to own (not lease), so what’s really free here?

    3. Fiction – you have to have a full store and start at “profit level” (at least $3,600 in wholesale) to make any money. The truth is, any consultant could probably start out with a minimum order amount of about $200, demo her products at skin care classes and take catalog orders and keep herself from eventually losing a substantial amount of money that she would probably have had to finance. But hey ladies, look on the bright side. If you have leftover MK products, give them away as gifts for every holiday, birthday, etc. until they’re all gone. :-)

    4. Fact – Mary Kay is about selling women their dreams and showing them new opportunities. This is true. Mary Kay can allow any number of women to buy their own dreams at a cost of a few thousand dollars per year and to have unparalleled equal opportunity access to becoming a hustler and scamming other women out of their hard earned money through recruitment thereby perpetuating a deceit about how to be successful in business.

    5. Fiction – Mary Kay builds self esteem and teaches women how to run a business. Here’s the real truth, if you actually ran most businesses the way that MK teaches their consultants to run their MK businesses, there would be a lot of bankruptcy in the business world. The truth is, MK teaches people a system that almost entirely benefits the corporate headquarters. (1) The wholesale pricing is too high making the retail pricing for actual customers too expensive, especially compared to comparable products that are easier to obtain both online and in stores. (2) Offering free shipping in addition to hostess gifts and other overhead costs pertaining to running a MK business is seriously counterproductive since it greatly eats into profits. For any MK consultant, director, etc. that doesn’t agree with me, please calculate how much money you’re actually spending on catalogs, samples, gifts with purchase, shipping, hostess gifts and other customer freebies that you pay for as an expense out of your pocket. Trust me, there is not a 50% earnings margain when it’s all said and done. (3) So after you get done finding out how much money you’re actually losing and how little business sense the model your MK Director has taught you really makes, how good will you really feel about yourself?

    Anyway, of course everything is all in how you look at it. Perspective changes everything. However, I don’t personally believe after four years of being involved with the Mary Kay organization that the company is really designed to allow consultants to be truly successful and make any real money.

  • You're Bitter says:
    14 May 2008

    Say what you want about it. Women will make of this business what they want. For those of you who quit, I’m sure there were mulitple reason. This Pink Truth bitterness sounds awfully like someone who failed at something where everyone has the same chance to succeed. It’s like any other business. You invest either your starter kit (only $100) or your inventory. Do you know of many companies that allow you to start your own companies for under $5,000? Imagine the rent of a store front. If someone is pushing you to do something you don’t want to do, then TELL THEM. Don’t lie about your goals. A true Mary Kay director won’t force you to do anything that you’re not striving for… if you tell her your goals, she’ll encourage you to get you there. Not force things. And guess what? If your mom had a ton of inventory and didn’t sell it… then that’s her own fault! She had the opportunity, she was given the tools, she just didn’t do it. Some people have the drive and the passion and the williness to succeed and some don’t. One of the greatest National Sales Directors has a degree from Harvard because it’s a smart company with an amazing business plan. If you do things the way Mary Kay intended them, then you can be successful. But it’s not a gimme…. it’s not a guarauntee. you are acting like it’s supposed to be a company that GIVES things to you. NO WAY! You have to earn them just like any other company. Get realistic. Estee Lauder, which owns 13 brands within itself, including Clinique, bobbi brown, etc. made $2.7B in sales last year. Mary Kay ALONE with no other brands made $2.3B. You think Mary Kay is just lipstick? You’re WAY out of the loop and are showing your age. Mary Kay has been the #1 Best Selling Skin Care & Cosmetics brand in the US for over 15 years. That sounds like more than Lipstick to me. Maybe before you write such biased things about a company, you should do your research instead of just being bitter about having failed at something quite easy.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    14 May 2008

    Women don’t “make of MK what they want.” 99% of women who get involved in Mary Kay lose money. That’s a flaw in the system. It is set up for women to fail.

    And that “Best Selling” claim is a total farce, which I see you’ve bought hook line and sinker.

  • bluepink says:
    14 May 2008

    Firstly the #1 brand thing is a HUGE lie in MK. Even while I was in MK I knew that. They’re counting the sales to the consultants NOT the end client. Remember, that new recruits are ordering $1,800 and up and not selling it all that’s for sure.

    I find it amusing when people here post about the Pink Truth community being lazy, losers who didn’t work hard enough. Its hilarious, given that many on PT were Top Trip, Diamond winning, Cadillac winning, EESDs and even one story from a woman who was in NIQ.

    So “lazy, loser’s” that’s a riot. You’re just too brainwashed, even your responses are the same crap I was taught to memorize and spew out in my 5 yrs. Its lies like this that is catching up to MK Corporate. Their sales are low and so is recruiting and many directors are wising up to the scam quitting and in debt.

    I think the ones that defend MK the most are either new (like less than 5yrs) or have a lot to lose (like their team) and trying to stop us from telling the truth.

    Honestly I have nothing to gain by telling my story, I’m out of MK and relieved. I just want to help others not make the same mistakes I did.

  • CC says:
    14 May 2008

    You’re Bitter – What inventory level did you come into Mary Kay at? Have you sold all of that product? If you actually did, how long did it take? Is there a high demand from the average woman you’re targeting as your customer to pay the price point we charge for MK products? And how did Mary Kay Corporate make those billions of dollars you’re referring to in the first place? Through retail sales similar to other cosmetics corporations, i.e. through customer purchasing dollars? Or from new consultants signing up and purchasing way more inventory than it’s likely that they’ll be able to sell and actually make a profit on?

    You may say that this site is about bitterness, if that’s how you choose to look at it. However, more poignantly, I think this site is about warning woman of the pitfalls they will likely experience as a MK consultant before they make a costly mistake that they could end up paying off a long time after their Mary Kay consultancy tenure ends. It’s about helping people to weigh the real pros and cons ahead of time, not just airing grievances.

    To tell you the truth, MK teaches some very important principles, but most especially, what not to do when you run your direct sells company or any business for that matter. You can buy into the “pink bubble” brainwashing if you want, but just be aware of the truth. This is only a reality check.

  • Tickled says:
    14 May 2008

    Michele wrote: “It’s hardly easy for anyone at first. You run out of family fast and learn which friends are committed to you.”

    That’s pretty funny. You judge your friends by their willingness to buy crap from you or get scammed with you? No wonder you like MLM.

  • nomorepink says:
    20 May 2008

    I just had someone I know tell me at the ballfields that they were now selling mary Kay. It brought back some bad memories for me and I told her to make sure noone takes advantage of her and she said “oh, these gals are all Christians, they are not like the others and so on….” I told her you never really make money, etc and she said the same old crap….I am starting with a large inventory so I will have things in stock” blah, blah, blah, they have already gave her the whole speel. She cannot afford this, has 3 boys like I did when I was brainwashed into it and just doesn’t understand how it works. For me, it started out great (except when I had to lie to my husband about what I bought) it made me feel good about myself that my director was paying attention to me and gave me all kinds of compliments. To be honest, she caught me at a low point in my life and I thought it would make me grow as a person and financially. My husband got a little bugged by the whole thing but continued to let me make my decisions. I knew it was a bad omen when my dog literally almost ate my first order and I couldn’t find the ups box for days, it was in the backyard and pretty tore up. Next, I had a customer mail back an eye cream with a nasty letter about her eye completely swollen and burning for 3 days! Next, I had my director continue to hound me constantly and call my home when i was sick from my “day job”. This was an experience to forget. I am glad I found this website tonight because I was really looking to find out what is in these wonderful products (i am learning to be more health conscious) and can’t find a damn thing. I did find some things linking it to breast cancer which, darn it, I will print out for the gal that is getting into this. Her mom died of cancer!!!! Keep up the site, this is informative and I hope many, many women come to their senses!

  • Lynn says:
    24 June 2008

    Thanks for sharing this information. I was actually thinking about signing on to be a consultant. You have helped me think twice about it.

  • marygcurtis@insightbb.com says:
    29 June 2008

    Wow, what a bunch of sour grapes. M.K.. is absolutely not for everyone, but money can surely be made. Tracey really has a bone to pick to spend so much time on a ridiculous and uninformed hate campaign. What a waste of time!

  • Mary says:
    30 June 2008

    Are you not aware that the company has a buy back policy of 90% on ANYTHING THAT YOU PURCHASED IN THE LAST YEAR?

    That is a complete loss to them when they destroy the products. If you used or sold 10% you got your money back!

    When a Store goes out of business, will the manufacturer buy back?

    Does everyone do a blog on a business that closes up?

    I have plenty of consultants coming back who are in their 2nd or 3rd time, because of situations going on in their life. After all the years I have given to Mary Kay, I have always said I would stay with it, even if I had not accomplished all that I have, stritcly for the personal growth, and caring, loving supportive women.

    I wish you the best of luck in all that you do and I pray for you.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    30 June 2008

    I’m well aware of the buyback and I encourage everyone to use it. SEND THAT SHIT BACK!!!

    Inventory return instructions here

    Yeah, that’s not a gift from MK. That’s the least they can do after exploiting hundreds of thousands of bank accounts every year.

  • Jackie says:
    30 June 2008

    They have that 90% buyback guarantee because legally they have to, if not they wouldn’t have it because right now sales and recruiting is down since more consultants are wising up and quitting this scam.
    I sent all my stuff back this past March and it was the best decision. I now have a job with benefits and if I need training, the COMPANY will pay for it, unlike MK which requires you pay for everything yourself: travel, hotel, meals and the tax write-off is not enough to make it worth it.
    Mary Kay is a MLM that takes advantage of women, emotionally, mentally and financially and pretends to be loving and caring and supportive (THEY ONLY ARE WHEN YOU’RE HELPING THEM EARN BIG COMMISSION CHECKS). After 5 yrs I’m glad to be done with it and actually have money saved in the bank. I couldn’t do that while being a consultant since my upline would guilt trip me to reinvest any profit (very tiny in MK) to help the team, unit and/or National Area.
    Tracy has helped women get informed about this company and Pink Truth has women who were Top Directors in MK, including a NIQ share their true experiences to help others not make the same mistakes.

    I was the top in my unit as a Future Sales Director and thank God I didn’t choose to be a Director or I’d be in more debt. My Caddy earning Director also quit and came to her senses and now makes more than she made in Mary Kay in a real job with benefits, paid vacation and training….and she was in the top 10 of our National Area, so she wasn’t an unsuccessful Director.

    Visit Pink Truth and find out the real deal like I did. I read all I could for a month to make the educated decision to leave.You’ll find out months in advance of any product changes, behind the scenes experiences and everything Mary Kay Corp won’t tell you and Tracy has been right every time about the product updates.

    I’ll be using the $1000 I use to spend at Seminar to enjoy a beautiful vacation with my loved ones and not into product that can’t sell because gas and food is more important than a lipgloss.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    30 June 2008

    Minor correction: MK is not legally required to have the 90% buyback. However, I believe they do have to have it in order to be a member of the DSA (organization which protects MLMs from regulation).

  • Pedro Menard says:
    1 July 2008

    “However, I believe they do have to have it in order to be a member of the DSA (organization which protects MLMs from regulation).”

    (lol)

    The 12 month repurchase program is one of the “conduct rules” member companies have to enforce in order be a DSA member. However, some companies, like Agel, are strangely not bound to this rule (their repurchade program is only ONE MONTH), so I guess it is a bogus rule…

    Pedro

  • Pinkluv says:
    2 July 2008

    I am a MK consultant, and I have been for almost 6 years. I am appalled at the negative comments I am reading about a company I respect.

    No-one pressured me into becoming a consultant. I was told the basic facts, and I made a $100 commitment. I was not pressured into purchasing huge amounts of inventory. In fact, in the beginning, I was only going to be in MK for personal use. I have pressured no-one into joining me. I have had several women question me about the company, and I have been blessed with several wonderful women as recruits.

    I work another full time job; MK has become my “fun” money. My “fun” happens to be traveling, and I have taken several extended vacations abroad funded solely with my MK earnings. I have not gone into debt to do MK, nor do I intend to. I keep a separate MK account, and I have been trained via a wonderful adopted director to handle my business finances and run my business appropriately. I have no credit card debt, and I am able to add a nice addition to the principle of my mortgage payment each month.

    I am not foolish enough to think, nor have I been led to believe MK cars are “free”. I know that a company car (at any company) means you are a producer, a mover, a shaker. Being a MK car driver is work…a lot of work. MK women are accused being in a “pink bubble”. I am thinking it is not our bubble that is the problem. It is the bubble of “desparation” that women who jump in without asking the right questions or who forget the old adage…”if it is too good to be true…it probably is”. It seems to me that there are a number of women commenting here who have had need of more money, heard the MK facts, and then plunged in without giving the reality of running a business enough thought or plan because they were hoping for an easy fix to some deparate situation in their life.

    If you have had a bad experience with MK, it is unfortunate. However, no-one put a gun to your head to sign-up, purchase inventory, or choose a level of activity that did not produce the results of which you were obviously dreaming when you signed your agreement. Instead of spending time here, set a goal for your own success, and then go out and find the means to achieve that goal. In the meantime, we MK consultants who a satisfied with the choice we have made will be around. Remember to wear sunscreen.

  • Fidelia says:
    3 July 2008

    I hate it when people try soo hard to denounce a product or business that is not illegal or dangerous.The title of the publication is fearful”MK destroying half a million women a year”.If a product does not work for you,advce other people that it didn’t work for you,dont tell them it will DESTROY them.I have sold MK in the past and have stopped not because it was DESTROYING my life,but because I could not give it the amount of time this type of business requires.The company is making lots of money,what is wrong with that? so is MAC, clinique etc.Nobody forces anyone to buy anything.The company does not tell you to buy to buy $1800 worth of products,this is definately a lie from a greedy sales director concerned with her own commission.You should should start an investment with what you can afford.Please channel your efforts to the real things that are destroying the lives of women.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    3 July 2008

    The destruction of women and their finances by Mary Kay is very real and documented by thousands. I will continue to fight against the big pink cult as long as it takes so we can spare as many women and their families as possible.

  • Jackie says:
    3 July 2008

    I don’t hate the products, they’re not the best, but I don’t hate them. I quit MK due to the manipulative practices of my upline, (sales directors and national sales directors). I couldn’t in good conscious continue to associate myself with a company that guilt trips and lies to their sales force in order to gain higher commission checks.
    Not 100% of the sales force behaves this way, but its too many that do to just turn a blind eye and ignore. We on Pink Truth want to help other women not make the same mistakes and know that they’re not alone like I felt.
    No one has the amount of time available to devote to MK in order to reach the top unless you work it literally 24/7 and ignore your friends and families, front load huge inventory packages to brand new consultants who are very trusting of their recruiters to help them and guide them. If the recruiter tells them, “if you’re serious about MK and running a business you need the $3,600 inventory”, so they trust their judgment and guidance and don’t realize until too late the mistake.
    PT provides honest advice and lets you know the pitfalls. I wish this site was around when I started as a consultant I would’ve quit sooner and not have been so trusting of my sales directors who only wanted my huge orders to provide for their lifestyles.

  • Fidelia says:
    3 July 2008

    When I started the business,nobody told me to purchase $3,600 worth of inventory,infact I started out with $200.Blame the greedy sales director who mislead people.Before you atempt ANY business venture,you should put all factors into consideration.
    You can fight with all your energy,all I can tell you is that even as you have thousands that claim that marykay “destroyed their lives”, there are thousands out there that have success stories.Your “fight against the pink cult” sounds to me like you have a personal issue with this company.Please ladies. dont let anyone discourage you,start small,advertise your products and find a sales director that will not mislead you.If it works for you,good,if it doesn’t work, let it go.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    3 July 2008

    You’re right… I’ll have to correct myself. It’s hundreds of thousands whose lives are destroyed. 480,000 recruited each year in the U.S. x 99% who lose money = 475,200 women each year in the U.S. who are screwed by Mary Kay.

    And those who were victims of this system that guarantees failure to 99% shouldn’t just “let it go.” They should scream from the rooftops to help others avoid these financial losses.

  • Pinkluv says:
    3 July 2008

    It sad to say, but fear gets a lot of women into bad financial situations. They are afraid that they aren’t going to have enough money for all that they want. They are afraid of disappointing someone. They are afraid to go out and stake their own claim in life. They are afraid of saying “no”. Ms. Coenen, I am sorry to tell you this, but you are promoting that very fear in women. You make them afraid to take a chance at anything, MK or anything else that might improve their situation. Women like you keep other women in dead-end jobs, in dead-end relationships, even in debt…I notice you manage to sell a few items of your own on your website.

    I am with Fidelia. Ms. Coenen’s “fight against the pink cult” is over the top. If you are thinking of beginning a home based business, be it MK or some other, you need to ask questions. And you need to know how and when you are going to work the business–there is a definite difference between “personal use” time and the “paying the mortgage” time. And you need to be aware of the financial risk you are willing to take. No-one can make these decisions for you…not Ms.Coenen, not an upline. And you need to remember that nothing happens without effort, and that is true for any profession. But mostly, you need to make your decisions based on fact and research. You have only started your research here.

  • Scrib says:
    4 July 2008

    $1800 orders are the result of “a lie from a greedy sales director concerned with her own commission?”

    I’ll see that and raise you these lies from some other women concerned with their own commissions:

    “If you plan to do even one skin care class a week, you need to know that you need a full inventory – or at least, to work up to $3600.00 wholesale. (Executive Senior Sales Director Kathy Payton)

    “Small orders handicap new consultants. $3,600, $3,000, $2,400 – these are the three levels to explain. ” (NSD Stacy James)

    “A $3,600 order is an advantage because banks hesitate to make small loans. Most banks will not consider loans for less than $1,000.” (NSD Rena Tarbet)

    “All working and aspiring Star Consultants need $3600 on shelf. If they do not begin with $3600 or get there within their first 90 days, they never get there. Get the agreements, get the STAR order; I want you desperately to stay focused on your personal selling, personal recruiting, and commit to bringing in STARS!” (NSD Pam Shaw)

    Such gallant leadership; always having their downline’s best interests at heart.

  • Maggie says:
    14 July 2008

    That’s your opinion of MAry Kay. I happen to believe in the Co and use the products and have many customers that love this Co and will not use anything thing else. I have a Wonderful Sales Director who gave me great information and did not tell me I had to purchase any amount she told me my options of what I could buy and asked what I could do and what did I want to start with. Just because you had a bad experience does not mean everone else is being ripped off. I’m sorry for your Experience

  • Jackie says:
    14 July 2008

    Just wanted to update on my earlier posts. Just found out today that my Director (ex) and Senior Sales Director just quit and will remain consultants. They wanted to finish out the year and as of July 1, are no longer directors.

    These ladies were, “I’ll be in MK forever” type of women, both had quit their jobs and were Caddy earners and love the products as well. However, just like everyone else in MK that have been in over 5 yrs, they have woken up from the pink fog and decided not to continue on the hamster wheel. My director got a 9-5 a few months back and has already received a 10% raise and is truly happy to be free.

    She does have a big client base so she’ll just be a consultant for now and earn her 40% and never recruit again. So if you have a client base, love the products and feel that you’re earning more than you are spending than more power to ya.

    Just never recruit, never attend meetings/Seminar/conferences and never order unless you need it…and you’ll be OK, otherwise you’ll be in the debt that myself, my ex-director and my ex-SSD are working to get out of every day!

    PS: Don’t quit your job to do MK! EVER! No matter what anyone else says! Please don’t quit your day job. You’ll regret it.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    14 July 2008

    Hooray for your ex-director and senior!!!

  • shannon_rigsby says:
    20 July 2008

    i have sold marykay but i do not anymore. i use the product and believe its a good product. people quit jobs for different reasons. not everyone likes sales or is good at sales. it is a business. you have to treat mk as a business. keep good records and be deligent. it is deligence that maketh rich or poor. i have another business ive had for twenty years. it suceeded because it was my dream and thats where i put my focus. but that doesnt change mk is a good product, it wasnt my dream. but mk taught me to dream. and to keep the dream of my vision alive. its a good company.

  • Teacher says:
    21 July 2008

    WOW! This has been very enlightening. I too sold MK products back in the early 1990s. Then I went back to college while raising four children and helping on my husband’s dairy farm. I no longer had the time for MK so I dropped out. I felt bad for dropping out, but after reading all these comments I am so glad I did. I was told “It takes 3 years to get a business started and before you will see any money. Just keep those products on hand and you will do well.” Guess what, I ran out of patience and dropped out. MK would change their compacts and a person would have to purchase all new ones for their new products to fit into. And then there were the customers that would want the products I didn’t have on hand so I would have to order MORE products.
    I guess what I am saying is… Thank goodness I got out when I did. I now teach Kindergarten and LOVE my job.
    Just call me “educated teacher”. :-)

  • Diana Linn says:
    21 July 2008

    WOW

    Listen to all of you.. If you want and like Mary Kay, then do it.

    If you do not like Mary Kay, then stop doing it and whining about
    what it did or did not do for you.

    I have been in Mary Kay fo 12 years and a director for 11 years.
    I own another business and work with my husband 50 hours
    a week while I have raised 2 awesome kids., one who is
    now is in his third year of medical school and our daughter
    who will be starting her education in a veternarian school in the
    fall. I have put both of our children through their first 4 years of
    college with Mary Kay funds and have earned 6 free cars, the last
    3 which have been pink cadillacs. This BUSINESS WORKS
    but yes you do have to WORK!!!

    If it is not for you or you do not like to work that hard, that is fine.
    However do not ruin if for those of us who do.

    I do not force or pressure women to buy inventory, in fact if they
    do a small inventory order I am happy for them as they are excited
    to start with a small store. I do not pressure women to start a MK
    business unless it is right for them. Not everyone works this
    business the same so please if you are not in Mary Kay then
    keep your opionion to yourself.!!

    signed a very successful happy Christian wife and mom first.

    A Mary Kay lady second !!!!

  • Shy house mum says:
    21 July 2008

    I have just unwillingly signed up to be a MK consultant (no gun but a major guilt trip) as I couldn’t say no to my desperate-for-success young sister in law. In Australia it cost $179 for a showcase. My sister in law has actually spielled off that “MK wants you to have product, you can’t sell from an empty wagon” line to me! Which I never bought into. I’m happy to place orders for my friends who genuinly want the products but don’t feel pressured to make mimuim orders or commissions. I am just doing my first round of orders for all the ‘freebies’ then I’m out. I have 2 other part time jobs (=full time hours) and 2 small babies, I’m just looking to get out of the house for a little while then pack it in, I can see clearly and just want to get the product for myself and my mum. I will be one of those statistics that was in and out during the year, which I don’t mind one bit if I can get some product that I previously liked, unfortuneatly my sister in law has already sunk quite a bit of her welfare money and her mother’s credit card into building her ‘wagon’ :( Some people just need it to make them feel good about themselves if they can’t get it from their family.

  • Pinkluv says:
    22 July 2008

    Thank you Scrib for you quotes. Were the women who made them responsible for your checkbook? Were you relying on them to create a realistic business plan for you? When do you take responsibility for your choices?

    Every business with which you associate, be it Walmart, your bank, or your local MK lady, has one basic goal. They are in business to make a profit. From you. That is the simple fact of business. Why would you think that someone else is responsible for what amount of inventory you decide to purchase? We are a country of people who compulsively jump without looking.

    Don’t be foolish. Research and plan. Be responsible for your own decisions and finances. No-one but your has your own best interest at heart.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    22 July 2008

    “PinkLuv” you’re missing the point. It goes far beyond taking responsibility for actions and choices, which the vast majority of women on Pink Truth actually do. You must also recognize the part the upline plays in the grand deception. When they’re telling you’re they’re Christian and they’re going to help you (while they’re lying), when they’re saying you must have $3,600 of inventory or you won’t be successful, when they say that you should trust them because they’re experienced with MK and want to help them succeed..

    The list goes on and on, but I’m sure you understand what I mean here.

    Up until a couple of years ago, there was literally no place from which a consultant could get real information on MK. All they had were director propaganda sites that encouraged continuous ordering. Now that Pink Truth is there for women, they have a chance to get the real story.

    And that’s all we want. For them to make truly informed decisions, instead of relying on the only resource they had been able to find for 40+ years: directors and dishonest uplines.

  • The mediator says:
    22 July 2008

    I began selling Mary Kay and quit because I was too lazy. I was only asked to put in $100 dollars and take orders. I did fine and made what I put into it then I decided that I did not want to put the time involved and my business failed. I have been in several business adventures and the ones that I put my time in I do well and the ones that I start to be lazy in fail.The truth is I have family that sells Mary Kay and Avon. The Mary Kay People are financially better off than the ones who sell Avon. I have 6 aunts who sold Mary Kay since the 80’s and they were not directors however they made a killing. They had the nice cars and the jewely and the coats and the pink cars and the bees. They went to the Mary Kay seminars and they went to their Mary Kay meetings. What I learned was that even if you do not keep a lot of product or no product at your house you still can make money because you can call another consultant and borrow their product because you still make the sell. When you put your whole heart in something then 9 out of 10 times you will do your best but, when you start to have doubts and fears then you will not be able to succeed. So it will not matter if you have been in the business for one day or for 20 years if you are not giving your all. Tell you what. Today with no start- up kit I will start again to sell Mary Kay and I am sure I will do wonderful until I go back to school and have to pull some time away. I will let you guys know in a month how I did.

  • The mediator says:
    22 July 2008

    Remember ladies “God first. Family second. Church third. Everything else last. If you do these things in this order you are sure to succeed.”

  • Jackie says:
    22 July 2008

    To the Mediator,

    You got out, not because you’re lazy, but because you’re smart. MK is different now than it was in the 80’s. Its the worst time to join. Who in their right mind would order $3600 let alone $600 in inventory that isn’t needed.

    The greedy NSDs and Directors are taking advantage of women for too long now and thanks to PT, instead of dumping their cash on unneccessary inventory, its going to food, gas and savings account, and not towards their upline’s commission checks.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    22 July 2008

    Then how do you explain all the women who did just that but had significant financial losses in MK? They surely didn’t succeed with your methodology.

  • Pinkluv says:
    22 July 2008

    Thank you for your clarification, Tracy. And I do agree with you on a couple of points. Of course, an upline does make more money when orders are made under them. That is how the business was set up and has survived for nearly a half century. I don’t think that makes them dishonest, as they are working withing the perimeters of the business. However, women who knowing misrepresent their own earnings and status have some ethical issues to which I take exception. And I also agree with your point that there are precious few places a woman can turn to for sound business advice, not only for MK, but for any business a woman wishes to begin.

    I have not run into any dishonest MK directors in my 6 years with MK. My director is one of those “high energy”, “on the go”, “offer to everyone” types. She is much younger than I am, and this is her full time work. She did want me to start with a large inventory–larger than I was comfortable with. I did want to have my own business, something that I would be proud to own. I consulted my accountant and my lawyer before I signed on the dotted. This is something I would recommend to any woman who plans to start a business of any type. These professionals helped me to understand the difference between hobby time, part time, and full time activity. I ordered the amount of inventory which reflected the time I would be working with it. And that is how I continue to operate my business, and my financial professionals still guide many of business decisions.

    And I also agree with Jackie. Times have dramatically changed. When MK started, a woman generally had to have the signature of a husband or some other male who, in essence, gave her permission to create her own business. Consequently, someone generally had asked them the important questions about how they would run the business. The decision made 25 years ago was a more imformed decision. Now, women make their own choices, good or bad, without much effort or thought. This has been made even easier with the advent of the internet. The internet is wonderful tool. However, a person cannot blindly accept everything they find on the internet. Many sites or even blog posts are based in emotion, and fact gets lost. Being a bit of reseacher, I googled you to make a judgement on how reliable I thought your site might be.

    You have had a bad experience with MK. Many of the woman who have posted here or on your site have had similiar experiences. But here is the deal. There are many posts about how persuasive directors and NSDs can be. They are persuasive because they have appealed to the emotion of the potential consultant. They have made them feel good, and then they are more likely to make their decision. Your website also appeals to emotion; the difference is it is negative emotion, and again this makes woman more likely to make a decision.

    A woman has to be responsible for herself. Neither your persuasion, nor the persuasion of the MK directors or NSDs, is the correct way for a woman to be led into a decision. No business decision should be based in emotion, but rather in fact. MK is not a bad business for a woman to have, as long as it is run properly; I think the longevity of MK proves that point. Proper management of a business has to start from the beginning. No business should be started without proper consideration and research. I don’t think that research should end with a visit with director or a visit to your website. It should end with serious discussion with a financial professional, as well as with a discussion with the people who will be affected by its success or failure. So while I agree with and applaud your goal of helping women to make informed decisions when it comes to MLM’s, I think more direction needs to be given to them as to where to turn for face-to-face advice. As I stated earlier…your reseach has only started here.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    22 July 2008

    Could you explain this “bad experience” I had in Mary Kay? I would love to find out all about that.

    Mary Kay is, in fact, a BAD BUSINESS. It’s not even a business at all. When over 99% of women lose money, it’s not a business, it’s a scheme. Yes, my goal is to warn everyone about Mary Kay so that not even one more person would sign up with the company. That’s how seriously corrupt Mary Kay is. I wish that women would refuse to give those greedy immoral people even one more cent.

  • Pinkluv says:
    22 July 2008

    “You” was used as a collective example…not you specifically. I was trying to indicate that your site was a meeting place for women AFTER a bad experience. My apologies for my unclear expression.

    I guess I am lucky to be in that 1%, though I am curious about your documentation of that statistic. I don’t drive a pink car, and I don’t aspire to. I don’t wear a directors suit or red jacket, and I don’t care if I ever do. I don’t have credit card debt, and I doubt I ever will. I do thoughtfully plan how I will conduct my business, and I do try to follow the “golden rule.” I treat myself to the extras in life with the profit from my MK business. Speaking of which…the quarter hour chime of the grandfather clock I bought with my profits this last quarter is telling me it is time to retire.

  • Becky says:
    23 July 2008

    Look – My boss sells Mary Kay and I benefit from all of the great products it has to offer. The products are great, and all of the women who are into it that I know of are very happy with it. I’ve known several people who’ve gotten into selling it, and guess what? They love it. They make money from it. They’re happy. They’re not the miserable and brainwashed zombies that you’re making them out to be.

    I’m not into it myself because I’m a graphic designer with my own free lance business to take care of . But you know what? If I didnt have that to take care of, I’d probably get into it as well. I’ve been on the sidelines of this entire thing for about a year now . Yeah, it’s aggressive. It’s a company. There is not much of a difference between a Mary Kay seminar and a seminar for any other successful business.

    The truth of the matter is that this is a business that gives many women stuck at home an opportunity to do something else. It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out that for you to start your own business, it takes a money and dedication. It’s not a get rich quick scheme, it’s a “we give you the products, we give you a website, we give you an already established name – now you do what you have to do to make it work”.

    Using all sorts of ridiculous percentages isn’t right – over 50% of small businesses crash and fail within their first year, so does that mean that all small business owners are evil? No, it just means that some people know how to manage their time and money better than others. Thats all it means.

    I’ve been to plenty Mary Kay seminars. I design flyers, hostess invitations, and business cards and sell them at these places. If it were a life sucking organization, I wouldn’t take part of it. But it’s not. So please – lay off and get a life. You’re accusing this company of brainswashing when your own opinion is based on exagerated “truths” and complete misconceptions. How about you actually “inflitrate” the company and attend some of their seminars before you form such a disgusting opinion of a company that does nothing more than offer a business opportunity for women that would otherwise be bored at home or with their day jobs. Who knows, you might just make something of yourself.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    23 July 2008

    Well then score one for me, Becky. I’ve been in Mary Kay and I’ve been to their ridiculous “Seminars” at which little is learned. You obviously don’t understand how MLMs work and why 99% of women in Mary Kay lose money. Please check out pink truth to learn more. http://www.pinktruth.com

  • Jeni says:
    26 July 2008

    Michele; Mary Kay does NOT teach women to run their own business. They ( MK ) teach you to recruit, recruit, recruit. I am a fortunate soul in that I don’t want to recruit. I live in a small town with at least 25 consultants, and their is no way that all of us can sell to a population of 25,000 to 45,000 people. One half of these people don’t have the money for MK, the other 1/4 are bombarded with consultants, and the other 1/4 prefer the mall at Dillards or the other higher end stores. So, you ask, what am I in MK for? I love the section 2 items, and I can actually sell those and make a profit…can you get excited about that????? LOL

    Sales Directors, or at least mine did, LIE, LIE, LIE. They will do anything to keep that stupid grand prix, or aura or whatever they are advertising now to get women ” on board”.

    Did you know that the elite ” GMB ” does not even drive a pink caddy? She drives a Mercedes Benz, and it is red. For crying out loud ladies, get a grip, and use your brains for something besides defending the spoiled brat she raised that wants nothing but your money. Richard cares nothing for you people.

    Since the death of MKA, I bet you dollars to donuts, that this company will go under in about 5 to 7 years, and then where will you be?

    Sorry Ladies, but this is the truth….and oh wait…” here’s your sign “.

  • Sisu Mom says:
    28 July 2008

    Thanks for posting this interesting information, Tracy.

    Back when I was in college (early 80s), a friend invited a group of us to a Mary Kay party she was hosting. The consultant was her older sister, who at the time was a young newlywed student. The party was OK, products nothing memorable. I bought a couple items just to be polite. I don’t recall that I expressed much excitement for the products, let alone any remote interest in selling them. I’m not overly into cosmetics in general, and sales of any kind would be the last career I’d choose for myself.

    When I graduated a month or two later, I moved back home literally a thousand miles away. The consultant from the Mary Kay party got my contact information from her sister (my college friend), and began calling me incessantly trying to recruit me into Mary Kay. Like I said, I don’t know where she got the idea that I was interested. I declined and told her up front that I personally hated selling anything, but she wouldn’t let up. She continued to send me packets and frequently called for several months after that. Really, really annoying! Keep in mind that this was before we had Caller ID! Thankfully it was before we had email. When I moved out of my parents’ house, I finally got rid of her after instructing my parents NOT to give her my new address or phone number.

    I could simply chalk this up to one very pushy, obnoxious consultant, but my sister-in-law had the nearly identical experience with another consultant. My SIL, bless her heart, is that last person who would make a successful cosmetics salesperson. Thankfully, she had the backbone to say no, but this consultant harassed her for literally a couple of years after that, even after my SIL moved hundreds of miles away. Unfortunately this time, the consultant had my SIL’s email address. She didn’t get rid of this pesty consultant until they moved again and got a new email address.

    For a moment, think about all the professional people you know. They will gladly talk about their work, but they probably wouldn’t even think of trying to recruit their family & friends into whatever their business is. My husband is a paint salesman. He will gladly help you out with paint advice if you ask, and help you buy the products if you want, but he would never, ever try to recruit anyone (even his regular customers) into selling paint with him. If you are considering getting involved in a so-called business that revolves around recruiting more people to sell “under” you, you may want to reconsider.

    To those who are defending it: if Mary Kay floats your boat – well, good for you, I guess. Just leave me out of it. My brushes with MK raised some red flags and left a bad taste in my mouth. I don’t regret that I did not get involved in it.

  • resident says:
    29 July 2008

    Wouldn’t Avon fall into this same category.

  • robyn says:
    4 August 2008

    Wow!!! Mary Kay is not for all women! It’s a business to get into if you truly believe you want more for yourself. You have to work your business to receive the goals you want! Not every person who gets into Mary Kay has to order that much inventory. It’s all based on your needs & what you really want to gain from this company! If you want to sell $600 a week or not. It’s up to you! Why post such negative things. You must got involved and really truly did not love the product our the people who brought you in! There’s alot of companys out there who take your money & run & not help you along the way! So sorry you had such a horrible experience but writing such negative vibes about Mary Kay Ash and her legacy I truly feel sorry for you! Remember do onto other how you would like to be treated. God bless you!

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    4 August 2008

    Robyn – Sadly, Mary Kay is for ALMOST NO ONE. Did you know that the available evidence strongly suggests that over 99% of women lose money in Mary Kay? That doesn’t sound like it works for many…

  • Angie says:
    4 August 2008

    Robyn, you do make a good point and I agree that its common sense to not have to order so much and that you have to take this business seriously, however its not just a few bad apples but barrels of them that are very manipulative to new consultants who have no one to get advice and training from but these bad apples.

    Not all directors are evil and greedy, mine wasn’t, but when you have a greedy NSD that tells you in order to get to her position you have to do A,B and C, you’ll do it or be ridiculed and peer pressured to frontload.

    Its really ridiculous what goes on behind the scenes and unless you’ve attained DIQ position or higher you’d never know about it.

  • Jeni says:
    4 August 2008

    Avon is an MLM also….but you only pay $10.00 to get in, and you show brochures to people, and if they order , they order. No big deal there. The Ten Dollars you pay in the beginning also gives you a set of brochures, some samples, and all the info you need to just get started. No frontloading $3,600 or more if you are in “someone’s pearl division”. Should you decide not to do Avon, you get out, that is that. You won’t have a District Sales Manager calling you up, and sweet talking you to not return inventory. Geez, Mary Kay is different now than it was 30 years ago. This is the information age ladies, and with information you have power to make the right choices for YOU…

  • APRIL55 says:
    10 August 2008

    I really don’t understand why you decided to write this. Do you know that there are more women who make over 100,000 dollars a year than in any ohter company! Seems like it works to me. I feel bad for all of the people like you, who don”t have enough confidence and faith in themselves to just go out and actually make a sucessful business for themselves. Just because you don’t believe in yourself does not mean you should bring other women down with you. I feel bad for you.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    10 August 2008

    April – I’m sorry you believe that $100,000 lie. That’s what it is — a total lie. Take a look at the Applause magazine and do the math. You’ll see how few directors even come close to that level.

  • Angie says:
    10 August 2008

    Oh my gosh April, I don’t blame you! I use to spew that $100,000 a yr lie for years! It is a total lie meant to excite new recruits to sign up. I even had 2 copies of 2 NSD checks, so I totally believed that this was achieved by many in the company, but its not the case and is a very misleading statement made by directors.

    Once you subtract charge-backs, expenses, Seminar, Career Conference, its no where near $100,000. Why do you think NSDs sell training CDs, DVDs and tapes? Its where they make most of their income and don’t forget charging to hear them speak or go to their home. Its ridiculous!

    Many directors have been in MK for over 20 years, work hard every day and make around $20,000 if they’re lucky. This company needs to release the real salaries that the majority of MK make…..oh wait, then no one would sign up if they knew the truth, that’s why they don’t do it!

  • Tracy says:
    17 August 2008

    Dear Tracy,

    As a graduate of Marquette University – a Jesuit College – how do you justify your harsh judgement of Mary Kay Cosmetics? Perhaps you only attended the university and are not Catholic. Jesus would not be happy with you ! Mary Kay Cosmetics has helped thousands of women around the world. I had the great fortune of meeting Mary Kay Ash – wow, what an incredible woman! As I read through some of your blogs here – I really love the statements from the women who are with Mary Kay Cosmetics because their very nurturing, caring, and loving way as individuals – who wish you only the best – are apparent in the heartfelt sentiments they’ve written here. Wow, and to think, you think these women are messing up other women’s lives… There is no fraud involved. There is no ill will involved. There is only the Go-Give spirit. Mary Kay Ash truly believed and upheld the Golden Rule and she has passed this baton on to every one who has had the pleasure or should I say, the opportunity to be in her presence. Ask any Mary Kay Director for a copy of her 1099 – and, she would be happy to divulge it. It is not up to the company to print their incomes – these women are happy entrepreneurs and their income is up to them. Mary Kay wasn’t afraid the express her Christian beliefs nor incorporate Christianity into her company. What a sad state our world is in, when someone is able to take up a personal vendetta and make it SEO and spit out such negativity. For some reason, your heart has blackness in it – I pray that your website is struck by lightning and that your heart is struck by the fullness of our Lord Jesus Christ. Don’t bother responding directly to me – I will never visit this website again.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    18 August 2008

    This is the very reason Mary Kay is so insidious… It is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It is literally stealing millions of dollars from women each year, yet parading around as a “Christian” company.

    People don’t want to believe that a company spouting Christian values would be involved in such a massive fraud. It’s sad really, that it’s going on. But the best I can do is expose it. I may not be able to stop this horrible company with horrible representative who lie and cheat to move up. But I can inform other women, which is exactly what I do at http://www.pinktruth.com.

  • Jeni says:
    18 August 2008

    to the “other” Tracy….No, Jesus is not unhappy with any of us. Should you be the judge of what Jesus thinks? No, didn’t think so, silly goose. We are on this earth to do GOD’s will, and to love him and be ever mindfull that through Jesus, we are saved, by his grace. Mary Kay Cosmetics could be a great company once again, if they held on to the belief of GOD first, family second , and career third. You must understand that to be a proverbs 31 woman, GOD must be first in “everything” you do. You must have a personal relationship with him, an intimate relationship , if you will. I don’t see that spouting off , ” if you want to go up, you must show up” is doing anything first for GOD or your family.

    Ladies, I do sell Mary Kay, although, I do not use the skin care product myself. It leaves my skin full of blackheads on my nose, and like an oil slick. I don’t need to purchase 5 different things to make my face beautiful. I use repechage on my face, and guess what?, IT WORKS WONDERFULLY!!!!!

    Mary Kay herself was a nice woman, although she was tough, she was good, and knew business. It is unfortunate that she is no longer the head of the company. Why on earth would I want to use skin care from a company that is run by men? They Know NOTHING about skin care, or beauty from a woman’s point of view.

    I like Avon, but I don’t use thier skin care products either, except for the new Anew rejuvinating eye cream. It is good! Yes, I do sell Avon, as well as MK, but neither are on my list for skin care for myself. Repechage is the way to go for all skin care types. It is a great product, and ask your local beautician about it. It is very expensive, but you can get the travel kit for only $50.00, and it will last an entire month.

    I have many ladies who purchase Avon and Mary Kay, and each of them have thier own reasons why they use it. I am a woman on a mission to help women to see how beautiful they are, and talk to them about achieving success on many different levels, not just recruiting others. We, as women, need to help each other, and if a blog or website is about exposing companies that can hurt relationships, hurt your finances, and take you away from home when you need to be with your children in the evening, then I say ….BRAVO!!!!

    I believe some of you ladies become angry about pink truth is because you KNOW you are guilty of the same things these intelligent women speak of.

    My heart wishes for each and every one of you, not to be envious of what your neighbor has, or your friends car, or whatever guides your thoughts for wanting more. We are fortunate to have been born in this country. We are fortunate to have a government that lets us choose our religion, and we are so very fortunate that we can wear pants, let our hair show. We don’t have to cover our faces when in public. We have laws that protect our friends when the drunk SOB comes home and beats them up. We have laws that protect us from rape, and the slaughter of our children. These are serious issues, and more thought provoking than worrying about our next recruit.

    Thank you, Jeni

  • Ava-Simone says:
    18 August 2008

    I don’t subscribe to negativity…however, I do understand your underlying intent which is to educate women. So why is it that you have to do it in such a negative manner…you cannot go about scaring women out of an opportunity that very well might be for them. True it is not for everyone and yes some women have lost money and some women have been lied too, so why not put it out there like that. A fact remains that there are several women who have made money.

    If your underlying motive is to educate people (women and men) about the ramifications of MLM companies then why not target all of these companies? Why are your efforts only geared towards Mary Kay? That is what I have trouble grasping. I just started selling Mary Kay and I am not doing it to get rich..I solely want to maintain some residual income coming into my household, whether it be weekly, monthly, quarterly or yearly. I do agree with you that if I am pushed and prodded to sell at a level that I am uncomfortable with, then yes I will most likely quit and yes I would probably tell others that I know who are wanting to go into the business to enter at their own risk..I would give them the good and the bad, arming them with the knowledge to make an informed decision. You cannot just proprogate the bad only because there is always good and bad about any situation. Like your website…your intentions may be good but your delivery is bad…

    I am curious as to your take on franchises. It almost seems to be the same..it requires a much larger investment than Mary Kay would ever ask for..it also requires that you purchase your own equipment, produce your own marketing, recruit your own employees, vendors, etc. This is one reason why I chose to sell Mary Kay first because the returns were immediate for me. I have not purchased any inventory..I host parties, classes, sell at locations and take orders. The fact is true that it is hard to sell without product..My customers want to buy the item in real time just as if they were in a real store that maintains an inventory of product. So I have spent $100 dollars and I have already gotten that back. The $150,000 needed just to become a part of the franchise business I want, I will not see for a very long time if ever (if my business fails, they will not give me my money back, they will not take back my inventory, they will not pay my staff, etc.).

    I hear what you are saying, I am just saying if you are going to target one, then target all..

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    18 August 2008

    I’m negative about Mary Kay because 99% of women who get involved with it lose money. MARY KAY SUCKS!

  • havurah says:
    22 August 2008

    I have always maintained that no one can save anyone from themselves if they do not want to be saved. Mary Kay Ash, the person, was not a so-called Christian in the way it is bandied about here and the company she founded was not a Christian company. It was a cosmetics and skincare manufacturing business built on a specific marketing plan and her ultimate success was when MARY KAY CORP. went public and hit the bigtime about 30 years ago…give or take.

    Then she got old and her son took it over. He leveraged the company into massive debt to take it private and morphed it into some sort of religious answer to the mystery of life using makeup as the means to salvation. Of course, this salvation also included the earthly rewards of valuable gifts and prizes and the chance at a lifestyle enjoyed by those other rich folks who did not use religion to attain that good life.

    That being said, MARY KAY CORP. is actually a series of corporate entities tied to one another and dependent upon its Directors as a physical and contractual buffer against the new recruits and other signers on, including end retail customers…if there are any.

    MARY KAY INC., is simply a factory. If the MARY KAY CORP., MLM disappeared tomorrow the factory would still be churning out other label products for other clients.

    So, our objection is strictly to the marketing plan of the signature product. Simply speaking, if the MKC marketing method was really such a success, why is there any other business method at all? How do bricks and mortar retailers succeed? Why would anyone work in any other way if the Christian way of MKC and its army pink ladies is the way to a six figure income and a life of Christian wealth?

    Is there a secret that no one else except the chosen few know? If Jesus is the path to all of our salvation, why is he co-opted by this one company? Can’t all companies have Jesus save us and lead us to the enriching of all lives?

    What is the secret that churns through 40,000 recruits a month? It can’t be much of a secret if that many people are churning through..or as Mary Kay, herself, described it…..running the bath water with the drain open….recruits in, drained IBC’s out.

    The marketing plan on its face is fraudulent. Combine an oversaturation of sales force with an expensive, yet middle of the road,, product while restricting the selling area and method, and no legitimate and lucrative business can happen. The sales force are the end buyers and if no product ever makes it way to an end user/customer/client, the corporation doesn’t care. It sold its wares and it is through. What becomes of the stuff is anybody’s guess…least of all, MKC.

    No, I am not Noam Chomsky. If anyone, I am Ayn Rand…lol. I understand this game and I understand ‘Tracy Coenen’s need and ambition to educate the depleted and the vulnerable and gullible. I don’t know what the answer is because there is a sucker made every minute and precious few MKC Directors are trying to make a living out of finding those suckers.

    Women who need income have to work at a real job. That is a holy truth. some women marry their incomes, most earn it honestly. In the end there is no honest income without honest work. Work is whatever derives the income, but does not require recruiting and investment into a tenuous scheme.

    Wall Street acknowledges that its products are risky and investment is a speculation. But that kind of financial speculation does not involve bringing ones friends, families and acquaintances into the group to further the groups ambitions. MKC is a speculation of the most evil sort. It promises to save women as it empties their wallets and punishes them for the built in failure. MARY KAY DOES SUCK.

  • Consultant says:
    25 August 2008

    All the negative comments above are disgusting. I have been a MK consultant for 4 years. I only want to be a consultant. I am not interested in being a Director. Too much work and headache for me. I have three boys that demand my attention. I became a consultant because I use MK products and my mom does too. I have used them for many years prior to me becoming a consultant. I was introduced to MK products about 10 years ago by a friend of mine. She never pressured me into selling. She asked me once and when I told her I wasn’t interested she never asked again. I had alot of problems with my skin and my skin is very sensitive. After using MK I noticed a hugh difference in the way my face looked. My husband noticed, which is saying alot because he never notices anything. All my family and friends noticed. Well needless to say after 6 years of me buying from my friend I asked her about becoming a consultant. I figured since I was spending so much on MK why not become a consultant and get my products half off. During the 4 years of being a consultant I have built a nice customer base by word of mouth. I wasn’t trying. I also added two consultants. Not even trying. They are doing it mainly for the same reason I am. I did start with full inventory of $3,600 wholesale, but the products ordered with that inventory was all stuff I use and my mom uses. No one forced me to do that I just wanted products on my shelf so when I need it I will have it. Now I keep the products my customers use on my shelf, so when they need it I can give it too them immediately. I order a $200 wholesale order at least every few months. Just when I need to restock my shelf for me and my customers. Also I have a 15 year old who has problems with blemish. He started using the 3-in-1 Cleansing bar and the Acne treatment gel and his face looks great.

    I know from experience the products work.

    But what you spend is up to you. No one forced me to spend anything.

    And I am tired of hearing that MK is a pyramid scheme because it is not. You better do a little more research. AMWAY is a pyramid scheme, MK is not.

    Sincerely,

    MK forever

  • Jackie says:
    26 August 2008

    To Consultant.

    A) You’re lucky that your recruiter didn’t pressure you, I and several of my sister consultants weren’t as lucky. We were manipulated to “push” and order to support the team/unit/NSD Area and not to worry because we’ll sell it all. Its B.S.

    B) Since you’ve only been in for a few yrs, you haven’t seen/heard what I have and the longer you’re in the darker stuff you’ll see and hear.

    C) You see the worst of this company when you’re in DIQ and up. As a consultant not wanting to move up the career path, you’ll usually just be in the fluffy pink cloud selling to clients, not recruiting and not feeling too much pressure.

    As soon as I hit DIQ it was Hell from there on and I’m glad I quit and am out. I know too much about this company to even stay a consultant and support them with my purchases. Sephora is my BFF now!

    Take care of yourself and I hope you don’t change your mind and decide to move up because you’ll see the evil then.

  • Agatha Prouse says:
    26 August 2008

    To “Other Tracy” at August 17th, 2008 at 10:05 pm, for you to equate Christian virtue with an enterprise of avarice is a terrible blasphemy. Shame on you.

  • LJ says:
    27 August 2008

    I used to sell AVON. Lots of MK sales ladies tried to convince me to sell MK. With AVON (at the time) the start up cost was $20. For that $20 I received about 40 booklets, a bag of samples, a tote bag, AVON bags for customer’s products, an order pad, and a couple of pens and some body wash. Not a bad deal for “starting my own business”. My first order was around $225 and I think I made about $90 on that. They use a sliding scale based on your sales. The more you sell, the bigger the percentage you make. You never have to order any “stock”. I sold it for about a year and 1/2 and loved it. I moved from the area and haven’t sold it again since then, but am thinking of starting back. The beauty of AVON is that you can send off one order, make back your startup cost, and quit whenever you want. You won’t lose anything. I think their startup cost is about $30 now, but it’s worth it. I just couldn’t see paying all those up front costs with MK. AVON is the way to go if you want to sell anything. The booklets do the selling for you, things go on sale, they have cool clothes, etc. Hope this will help someone out!

  • Michael says:
    31 August 2008

    I AGREE! My ex-fiance’s mother was a lead consultant and dragged me into it. I thought “Oh, she will soon be my MIL, she won’t get me into trouble!” WRONG!!! That’s all those women care about!

    I hate this business!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Mish says:
    1 September 2008

    Hey Tracy Coenen,
    Am I understanding you correctly? That over 99% of women lose money in Mary Kay? With all of the posts you have here it is no wonder you failed. You cannot be on the internet 24/7 and expect to run a business. When you reply please tell me yet once again that over 99% of women lose money in Mary Kay.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    1 September 2008

    Hi Mish – Thanks for your nice comments! How lovely of you to be concerned about my schedule. I assure you, I am not on the internet 24/7. However, I do write all the posts here (and on other sites too!) and I run a very successful business in addition. It seems like it’s all working out!

    :)

  • Jeni says:
    2 September 2008

    Mish? It takes a very short time to post things on a blog, I assure you!!! First of all, Tracy is a writer of books, and these are not the only things she does. You should check out pinktruth.com. A great site for your Mary Kay business, and it will teach you alot about how NOT to get in too deep, and to keep your business in check, whatever business you are in. If you are in MK, then what are YOU doing on a blog at 9:45 pm? You should be in bed like MK was and have already written your things on the 6 most important list for this morning. Have you joined the 5 o’clock club as yet? It is what MKA said would help you get busy, and get organized in the mornings, and give you more hours in the day to do your biz. Mish, do not misunderstand me, I am a direct seller of products also. I understand you need to bash what you prefer not to understand, but really, don’t lose your life or your soul over what should be in your life first, which is GOD. then your family, then your business. I must say though, that I don’t ask GOD to bless my business, I ask him for wisdom, protection, and the greatest of all, understanding HIM. Do you do this as well?

    Have a great day.

  • Millie Reiter says:
    3 September 2008

    After placing an order with my new Mary Kay lady she asked for money up front.I hesitated but reasoned she IS a Mary Kay rep after all.Well wasnt much money just 38.00 but I still dont have my merchandise.Order was placed over a week ago.One of the things that make me go HMMMMMM.Esp since she said she had it at her home.Anyone have this problem????

  • Cat says:
    3 September 2008

    I became a MK Consultant about 15 years ago, and dabbled a little with parties, but no recruiting.

    I quickly became squeamish about asking friends and family to host parties, and feared them running in the opposite direction when they saw me coming with a MK salespitch on the tip of my tongue. I hated trying to treat every social encounter as a “business opportunity.”

    I went mostly “inactive” after only less than a year, but still enjoy getting my own products at wholesale by buying only the minimum required whenever I get the “letter,” the one that lets me know I’m being dropped as “active.”

    I went to meetings early for awhile, but became really uncomfortable when the pop-Christianity theme of “Abundance” started to be used relative to pink cars and diamonds. I am a Christian and realized on a gut-level that Jesus never meant that we are promised abundance in THIS life. So, I distanced myself from the “crap” but still credit my healthy complexion to MK “cream!”

    It’s terribly foolish of any woman to enter into this MLM without her pretty eyes wide open (pretend you’re putting on mascara!), and set a reasonable limit for capital outlay before you/your family finances are in any degree of jeopardy.

    Just read the pros and cons with an open mind and don’t be afraid to challenge your thinking as well as what you’re being told!

  • Jeni says:
    3 September 2008

    Millie? She asked you to pay up front for something she said she already had at her home? wow! You went ahead and paid? NO, you should never pay until you have the merchandise IN HAND. How long has this MK rep been in business? I NEVER ask for money up front, especially if I have the product in house. Clinique gals never ask me for money unless they are selling me the product right then and there. Estee Lauder, the same. Hey Millie? If she does not return with your product by tomorrow, call her asap. If you are unable to get ahold of her, tell me her name and phone number, and where you live. I guarantee I will get your product to you or get your money back for you.

    Take Care.

  • Mish says:
    4 September 2008

    Jeni,
    I stumbled across this site while checking out the MK face cleaners. I was looking for reviews on the product. I do not sell anything. I do not want to sell anything. I am one of the few women in the world who wears no makeup at all. Wouldn’t that make a great MK rep? Thank you for explaining the 5 o’clock club. I didn’t know it existed. I am a laid off RV worker and I used to be up at 3 am, leave my home at 4 am and start production at 5 am. The 5 o’clock club doesn’t sound that bad. Why do YOU assume that I am in MK? I was complaining about Tracys repetiveness. If this is how she writes books, I will not purchase any. By the way, did you notice she resonpended to my post in 15 minutes? Not on the net 24/7?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    4 September 2008

    Don’t worry, Mish, my book is probably of no interest to you, so I wasn’t betting my whole career on selling one to you. Thanks for taking note of my schedule…. I typically work until 11pm on most nights, and have my email open when I’m working. I’m sure you don’t mind if I respond to comments on my website while I’m working, do you?

  • Jeni says:
    4 September 2008

    Mish. Please forgive my rudeness. I apologize. I did not understand what you were saying, and I guess I misunderstood.

    Life is funny you know. I assumed ( which is wrong) that you were in direct sales/MLM when you responded on this blog.

    Tracy is a very intelligent woman, and is a whiz at computers also. Wish I had that knowledge. Alas, I do not, but am thinking about taking a course or two at the local community college next semester. I believe it would help me in advertising my products, and give me a better understanding of the world of blogs.

    Have a wonderful evening Mish.

    Jen

  • Krista says:
    10 September 2008

    I “won” a “free facial” when I signed up at the NE State Fair recently. I was imagining a relaxing hour or so getting a true facial as if I were in a spa, so I was happy to attend on my birthday this past weekend. When I got there, I soon discovered that it was in no way a true facial, and in no way relaxing. I was unable to get in touch with my friend to have her come with me, so I was the sole blood for two sharks, and I was expected to do all the work on myself with their teeny-tiny sample amounts used for their sales demonstration, with the exception of the one car-driving shark applying the eyeshadow to one of my eyes for me. Their “compliment time” at the end was clearly designed to make me feel good about how I looked in their products, and despite my open-eyed realization of this, I ended up making a $130 order. When I visited my friend afterwards, she told me that I do a much better job on my own makeup than they did, and I choose much better colors for myself. Her statement had two effects on me: first, it gave me a booster-shot for my own ego and confidence in my makeup-application skills, and second, it deflated the after-purchase bubble so neatly placed beneath the shaky sales-pitch by the transparent “compliment time”. Suddenly I realized what a mistake I had made and immediately felt horrible with regret for how I let myself get suckered into buying something I could not afford. I am a college student and a mother, currently living on state aid and student loans. Thank God for my mom who told me that my horrible feeling is called “buyer’s remorse” and that legally I have (at least) 24 hours to cancel the order and get a refund.

    Whatever you might say about the business model, I do not think that you can rightly say that the products themselves are so superior to anything you can buy in the store that they can charge as much as they do and still maintain good faith with the end consumers. The only proof I have of any good faith is that I did get my money back, but after reading this article and many of the responding comments, I am glad I didn’t get suckered any more than I already have.

  • Krista says:
    10 September 2008

    I also wanted to add that as a consumer (albeit a consumer who normally goes daily without any makeup whatsoever), I find it questionable to buy my makeup from somebody who has it “at home”. It makes me wonder whether they’re giving me makeup that they’ve been using this whole time (for themselves and/or for their demonstrations) and just conveniently “happen” to have some available when an order requires a particular color or something. I know from reading the article and posts that they require recruits to buy so much stock up front, but what’s keeping that new recruit from using her demonstration products for herself between demonstrations, or using the stocked product until a customer requests a particular color? Are there tamper-proof hermetic seals in place so that you know you’re getting unopened product? Plus, the whole idea of having a demonstration kit that multiple potential customers use sounds rather, well, unhygienic.

  • Jeni says:
    11 September 2008

    Krista, Mary Kay wants so badly for you to have stock. I am in MK and AVON and with Avon, everything is sealed , so far anyway. I have stock with MK, just for the ladies whom I know, and they know I would never sell them a product that has been opened. In Avon , almost everything is sealed, which is great. I give everyone an Avon booklet, and they browse through it, and if they order, great! If not, no skin off my nose. It only costs me for the booklets, and in each and every one who orders from me, my books cost nothing. No, I do not make a living off of “Avon” because I do not recruit. I enjoy some of the products, and I order things for myself, and my family. I get it cheaper, and it works. Mary Kay could be a great company, but the “sharks” are there only for their benefit, not yours.

    LOL, the free facials! Isn’t that a scam? I would never tell a woman, she would get a free facial, because, saying that would be an outright LIE!!!

    I have seen alot of women, who do in fact, need to learn how to apply make up, and how to do skin care. I do tell them I will give them a facial, and I actually do the facial, and apply the make up. I went to beauty school in California many years ago.

    So ladies, don’t go and buy a whole “bunch” of stock. It is not worth it. If you sell alot, then by all means order, but don’t just make an order unless you know who is going to purchase it.

    If you want to open a store, Avon will let you do that, MK will not. Seems silly to me, but with my little store, I have a few MK items, and the ladies seem to enjoy looking at all of my dvd’s and training tapes on skin care and how to apply make up. Honestly, Avon is much better and wayyyyy cheaper than MK.

    Now for the meat of the story…. if you need health insurance, go to work. A job that you enjoy, and in 2 to 6 months, you will have health benefits, that you will NOT have with selling avon or mk. There is nothing wrong with working for someone else, especially if they show appreciation for your hard work.

    Do not quit your job over selling make up. This is a silly and irresponsible thing to do. If you have savings of over 1 million dollars, then by all means dabble in it if you want, but to be honest, please don’t invest in inventory…it is not worth it. I speak from experience.

  • Braveheart says:
    15 September 2008

    I love my Mary Business. I make money doing it too. I don’t feel like I have to recruit anybody in order to make money. I do this business because it is fun for me and I really enjoy talking to people rather I make lots of money or sell anything. I don’t believe in pressing anybody to do anything that they don’t want. Nor do I sell just whatever to make a sell. I really truly want my customers to be happy. That is what I aim for. I do have my work my busy God first , Family second and career third. I honestly believe you must stick to that to be happy. Every person choses what they want to say yes too and not everything works for everyone. But as far as buying a whole store I didn’t to that. To me that is crazy!!!! I did spend over 100 a month before I became a consultant so it works out great for me. I wish every good luck in everything that they do. Times may get tough but don’t overwhelm yourself with things you know that you can’t do. I am doing great in my MK business and I love that I can be home with my son and be there for my other sons. Of course I am blessed that I have a wonderful husband with a great career. MK is fun for me!!!

  • Proud and Pink Danielle says:
    17 September 2008

    Wow I must say the harsh words and tounge lashings on here saddens me which is a Company about such a amazing woman who started a amazing company that in 5 years has truly changed my life, I couldn’t imagine not being apart of this company because if I didn’t become a consultant I would be miserable like alot of people on here looking to complain and points fingers. Have I made mistakes in my business YES, did I purchase inventory YES, am I am Future Director soon to be car driver YES. But is everything you are saying true absolutely NOT !!! It is a personal choice to purchase inventory no one makes you do anything I believe we are all adults and no one forces you to do it, but you tell me what brand new business doesn’t buy products to sell so they are successful. Could you imagine Walmart with no products …NO you need to have items on your shelf. Has anyone every made me mis- manage my $, lead me in the wrong direction NO.Are there directors and consultants out there that don’t do things the Mary Kay way YES which is unfortunate but are there not people in your JOB that lie and deny YES there are . I am truly sorry if you had a bad experience but don’t make it a bad story for someone else who is looking for a better way of life and truly believes in this amazing company that has amazing Christian Values which I believe are the core of why women stay in this company .My prayer is that someone will soften you heart and help you find something better to do with your time because if you didn’t like MK you wouldn’t spend so much time talking about it :)God Bless

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    17 September 2008

    Darnit Danielle! You figured me out. I really love Mary Kay in my heart and my site Pinktruth.com is just a manifestation of my love.

    LOL. Get a life. Let me know how much credit card debt you have once you make it to director, if you ever do.

  • Jackie says:
    17 September 2008

    The worst thing you can do is get that car. If you insist on staying with MK, I’m not going to bother to talk you out of it. I’ve just seen first hand what a nightmare it is to have a MK car and what it does to honest consultants working to maintain it.
    Just take the cash compensation instead, get a better car and if you sit and do the math, its a smarter choice. The company pushes the car on consultants to use as a recruiting tool. Don’t be an idiot and fall into that trap!
    Do your research on Pink Truth. If you love MK so much than nothing on there will change your mind, but at least you’ll know what your getting yourself into by reading first hand experiences of driving “free”. If you’re not in debt now, and you take the car…you will be!
    I’m not being negative, I’m being honest.

  • Proud and Pink Danielle says:
    17 September 2008

    You truly are one of the many people that make this world so horrible with the way people talk about things. Please judge me not unless you be judged and with your response time being under 2 minutes you must not have anything else to do. I had a great example set for me by my dad that is a very succesful business owner so no credit card debit here :) Well since you talk so bad about directors I am sure you must have been one ?? Probably not.I have a great life and am glad that a woman like you is not something I wouldn’t allow myself to be influenced by .But you not being in this amazing company is probably the best thing that happen to both of you. Have a blessed blogging life

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    17 September 2008

    Yes! How DARE I be working on my website when you submitted your comment… and then I gave a prompt reply. Must be something horrible about that! I wish you luck, and will pray for the women you will recruit with false promises, false income claims, and false profits. You will frontload them with inventory they don’t need, and I pray that they’ll find pinktruth.com before you get their credit card numbers.

  • Proud and Pink Danielle says:
    17 September 2008

    Thanks for your feedback and totally appreciate your approach I know first hand what can happen when you don’t work and aren’t sharing this awesome product my prior director bought her car due to life illness issues. An since I need a new car and don’t want to pay for my insurance the MK car is what I want and I have checked everything out for my circumstances my best friend is driving the G-6 and is loving it and hasn’t has to pay a cent !! An as far for the comment from Tracy boy do you need to find a positive way to live you life and you need to fill it with wonderful things and those are not trying to share what you believe to be the truth .SO have a great day I am off to making some phone calls and treat my Customers and Team with the utmost respect as they love me sharing this product with them !!

  • Jackie says:
    17 September 2008

    I get my e-mails and respond promptly as well, silly me. But yes I agree with you about not being in this MML being the best thing ever. I’m truly blessed, and have helped others get out as well.
    Like I stated before, if you’re not in debt now…you will be once you get the car. They’ll be a month, or two, or more, where your team won’t produce and guess who has to do the rest in order to keep the car? YOU! But not to worry…you’ll just sell it all the following month, right? :)
    If you keep going towards Directorship, then I’ll really be praying for you!
    I have attained DIQ and quickly got out once I found out what directors truly go through. What they don’t tell you when they’re standing in front of the weekly success meetings! If that means I’m an “MK failure”, then fine, I make more money now than I ever did with MK, so I’m happy to be a “failure”.
    My Caddy Director and SSD also quit and we’re are all very happy not to be thinking about production and recruiting ever again. Good Luck!

  • Proud and Pink Danielle says:
    17 September 2008

    Thanks Jackie it’s not for everyone and that’s great or there would be too many ladies in MK .I think I have the true blessing of having a director that is very honest about the good and bad perks of owning your own business and I know all about the production that’s why when you are personally working your own sales and business and finding new ladies who this opportunity appeals to you won’t run into that when you stay focused daily on your business goals . An as far as director my other close GF was a director and she told me that when your systems are simple Directorship is no big deal just a amazing leader position to enrich others. So I truly know that I have been placed her for a reason and I am glad I was ablr to share my priceless experience with you..Thanks so much

  • Proud and Pink Danielle says:
    17 September 2008

    P.S= Like I told Tracy I have no debt I had a great dad who showed me how to manage my $$ so no issues with me :)

  • APRIL55 says:
    17 September 2008

    Mary Kay is not a mlm, but Avon is, maybe you should look up the definition of “multi level”. Mary Kay is a dual marketing

  • Jeni says:
    17 September 2008

    P & P: It is too bad that your dad did not teach you about english. Go back and read your posts…I think you may agree that having a better understanding of the English language may be to your advantage when you have team members that you must communicate with. GOD!!!! Don’t teachers actually teach these people how to spell, and use common sense? Dear Lord, forgive me, but if you ladies are going to post at least proof read your typing before sending it off…. UGH!!!!

    Another point : If you are so busy with your business, then why do you have time to post on this blog anyway? Are you NOT doing your phone calls? Have you decided to join MK’s 5 o’clock club? ( that 5 o’clock club is very good for me ). P&P; you need to delegate the things that do not make you money, and I am sure this is just one of many things you do ( blogging ) which is not making you ANY money at all. Remember your 6 most important things list…I am sure it does not include blogging Tracy.

    We live in a country that allows us to have opinions and to voice those opinions. Yes P&P , even yours. Tracy knows all to well the pain that women go through to make it big. We all do. So we are here to educate you, not only with English, ( lol ) but educate you on how to make the most of your life. Mary Kay Corp. is not interested in your life, only what you can do for Richard, the evil spawn of Mary Kay Ash.

    There, I am done for now….must watch t.v. and feed the critters, and do laundry, and set up for my yard sale this week-end.

    Have a great evening Tracy….talk to ya soon.

  • Krista says:
    17 September 2008

    Jeni:
    I was wondering about something you talked about in your response to my post. You said that you see a lot of women who need to learn how to apply makeup and how to do skin care. Let me tell you a story from my own life and then I will ask my question.

    Years ago I was working at Walmart as a cashier, and this one lady who was a Mary Kay consultant came through my line often. Every time she came through, we would chat cordially, and she tended to press me to have her do a facial on me. Now, I tend to not wear makeup, and I hear all the time that I pull it off amazingly well, that I am beautiful enough naturally without makeup. However, I am not completely ignorant and incompetent when it comes to applying my own makeup when I wish to wear it. (My sister did my makeup for me for my senior pictures and prom, and taught me how to duplicate the look, which has worked wonderfully well for me ever since. The colors and application are always done in such a way as to enhance my natural coloring without making me look overly made-up.) I just simply don’t wear makeup on a daily basis.

    So then, I would like to ask you if you think the reason she pressed me so much was that she thought that I ought to be wearing makeup just because our society today seems to dictate that a woman is not attractive UNLESS she is wearing makeup? Or do you think her frequent solicitation was nothing more than a very strong attempt to make her sales pitch?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    17 September 2008

    April – The phrase “dual marketing” is made up and meaningless phrase. It is used by MK in an attempt to avoid the words multi-level marketing, which is exactly what MK is. But you’re a good little Kaybot for reciting the script you’ve been indoctrinated with.

  • Krista says:
    17 September 2008

    Tracy: you might also add that even if “dual marketing” was valid, it would still fall under the umbrella of “multi” since the definition of multi is simply “more than one”. ;)

  • Jeni says:
    18 September 2008

    Hi Krista. Great question! Yes, she was probably trying to get you to be one of her customers, then when she thought she might have figured out what your “HOT” button was, “bam”, she would hit you up with the question of ” since you would like to earn extra money for Christmas”, or some such nonsense, she would pull the old scam of you becoming a personal use consultant.

    I said earlier in my post that many women needed to learn to apply make up, and needed a good skin care regemin…regimen…regimin…oh shoot, you know what I mean…is because I see so many women still using blue eye shadow and it looks U G L Y on almost any female. Our eyelids are our natural skin color , and when applying eye shadow, it should be muted, to enhance our eyes, not look like hookers on 5th avenue. LOL, sorry , had to put that in there.

    I believe make up should only enhance our own naturally good features, not cover them up. I have big blue eyes, and very full lips, so I use muted tones on my eyelids to make my eyes look bluer, and since I have full lips, I use natural looking lip color to make my lips look young again. Yup, I am the ripe old age of 53 and I intend to use whatever I can to maintain a younger look until I reach my 90’s , then I will just use paste…LOL. ( just kidding ).

    I love to teach women about skin care, and I have found something that beats Mary Krab and Avon. It is called Repechage. You can only buy it thru beauty supply houses or online. I am going today to purchase a large kit of it.

    Ladies, skin care is a must for helping your skin maintain a beautiful glow, and to prevent you from looking 50 before your time…I love to teach skin care, and would help anyone, and be HONEST with anyone who would want help. MK just wants to sell to you, or ultimatly recruit you into their way of thinking. There are so many great products out there, but the best place to go to get advice is your salon. They have access to many regimens, and have seen so many more faces than MK or Avon, and they really can recommend something that is great for you. “Warning”. If you go to your salon, and any of the women who do hair or treatments sells MK, walk out immediately and go to a reputable salon who does not sell avon, MK or beauti control….

    Have a great day all, and will post again later, after I use some of my repechage, and if any of you would like to know more about this product, let me know, or go online. It is great. Oh and just in care you are wondering….I do not do facials in a salon any longer, and I do not hold my license. I just want women to be protected from harmful rays of the sun, I want them to look their best in any setting, with or without make up.

    with love, Jen

  • Jackie says:
    18 September 2008

    I’d just like to say that I have a BBA in Marketing and can say truthfully that “dual-marketing” is somethink MK made up, its a MLM! Unless my professors are full of it!

    MK just uses that phrase to differentiate themselves so that you don’t think they’re a MLM, and therefore feel that MK is somewhat better than companies that state that they’re MLMs, but MK is one!

    Krista,
    Yes that lady was just trying to get you to make an appointment to sell to you anyway possible. Even if you wore full make-up, she would tell you how MK has similar colors and would love to try them on you at your complimentary glamour appointment. I was trained to talk to every woman and find any reason possible to book with them. Don’t pre-judge, yada-yada!

    Thanks Jen,
    That was good advice. I try to not to overdo the blue shadow thing too, but I have brown eyes and like the way navy liner looks and certain blue shades. I guess you got to know how to apply it and not go overboard. Stay away from neon blue please ladies. :)

    Have a nice day everyone!

  • Jeni says:
    18 September 2008

    Jackie; You are so correct when you say that blue eyeliner goes with dark brown eyes. It is very true. I wish I could use some blues to make blue eyes bluer, but alas, it does not work, at least for me. Heavy blue eye shadow makes ladies look…well…ugly. It is not a flattering color on most women.

    Ladies; if you are going to use a dermabrasion product, remember to let the product work for you, do not press any harder on the product to make it take layers off of your skin. I have seen so many women, younger ones mainly, scrub the dermabrasion product on their face, that afterward, their face looks like one big red tomato. UGH!

    For the price of MK junk, you can have one appointment at a salon, and let them treat you , and afterward, ask them what they used on you, and then look it up on the computer. You will not have MK people calling you month after month, you will not have AVON ladies calling month after month…and so on.

    Have a great day all, will post again, tomorrow…love to all of you, Jen

  • Consultant says:
    18 September 2008

    I don’t know how you ladies have time to write on this website. I haven’t been on here since August 25th. And I just came back today to see what comments were made after me. God Bless You!!

    Still loving Pink!!!

  • Krista says:
    18 September 2008

    Thanks to Jeni and Jackie for responding to my post. :)

    I am a Winter. I have really dark brown eyes, medium-dark brown hair (with natural reddish highlights), and fairly pale skin (though I tan easily in the summer) – usually the only foundation color that matches my skin well is ivory. What I wear on those few occasions that I actually wear makeup is a brown/dark brown eyeliner, applied more thinly toward the inner corner of the eyelid and gradually broadening until I reach the outer corner; charcoal eyeshadow at the outside corner in a somewhat (scalene) triangular shape; then a mocha eyeshadow in the middle-third of the lid, blending in with the charcoal; then a vanilla eyeshadow at the inner corner of the lid, blending with the mocha and spreading over the top along the brow-bone. The dark outside gives me the illusion of having thicker/longer/more eyelashes (especially nice when I don’t feel like wearing mascara), while the vanilla brightens the shadowy inner corner and mutes everything to give it all a softer look, and the mocha brings the other two colors together. Then I use a good pink blush and a puce/mauve lipstick. (I have also found that using the blush brush – without getting more color in the brush – over the brow-bone in addition to the vanilla color also helps brighten up my face.) Once in a while, if I feel like doing something a little over-the-top, I’ll extend the line of my eyeliner outward toward the outer end of my eyebrow to give myself a more Vampy/Egyptian look, but I don’t usually feel comfortable with such an extremely unusual look unless I’m going to a costume party or something. :P

    By the way, I’m 31 but still often get carded if/when purchasing alcohol/tobacco products. I get told often that I look like I’m still a teenager or am in my early 20s. ;)

    I know what you mean about blue eyeshadow: I gave that up when I was in grade school. ;)

  • Gloria says:
    18 September 2008

    I’ve been using MK makeup off and on, mostly on, for nearly 40 years and I have nice skin, though I believe that genetics probably has more to do with it than any skin-care products. I did try selling MK in the mid to late ’70s when it was very easy and inexpensive to get involved, and quickly decided that it wasn’t for me. The director level consultant I’ve been with for the last 20 years seems to have done and be doing very well for herself. She stopped pushing me to become a consultant only after I made it very clear that if she didn’t let up I wasn’t going to buy from her. Very recently, I have been purchasing the Mary Kay products from atouchofpinkcosmetics at a greatly reduced price and will continue to do so, ultimately eliminating my need to purchase from a consultant. I like the products, obviously, but I have always felt that they were overpriced, especially in the past couple of years. Hence I was delighted to find this web site.

  • Jeni says:
    18 September 2008

    OK!!! I got an e mail that said someone had posted, so I had to look to see who did the last three posts. Looks like we have a consultant that just cannot stay away from this little but mighty blog. hmmm…..

    consultant; since you love mk so very much, and you are obviously curious about what we say here, otherwise you would not come back, we say…down with all MLM’s. That includes mary kay. The master minds of marketing came up with dual marketing so they would not have to admit to the pyramid scheme. I also believe that pyramid people ( er…companies ) have a different set of rules to go by alsothan that of the fake dual marketing KRAP that mK came up with. If you want to read about Pyramid schemes, don’t go to the direct sales assoc. , go directly to google and google pyramid companies. You will get an eye full of exactly what you think MK is not…. So , in my haste to type, let me reiterate…MK is a MULTI LEVEL MARKETING company, because dual marketing companies DO NOT EXIST…now be a good little consultant, and stay away from any negativity, especially those that tell the truth. Slather on your 50 cent product that you pay for and sell that 50 cent crap … krap … to your customers who probably need to try something that would really work anyway. Try Repechage….it is a wonderful product, and it really works.

    Also consultant….please let us know when your company or husband, or kids or your car, or your customers wise up, and tell you to get a real JOB, with benefits, etc. Now go do your 6 most important list things, and write in your journal about how negative we are, and then for goodness sakes, go take a walk, breathe in some nice fresh air, and leave the beauty to professionals

  • Jeni says:
    18 September 2008

    Way to go Gloria….touch of pink is wonderful. I have even purchased alot of section 2 items there. I tried to get onto their site yesterday, but I was given a message that they were down for updating or something. Ah well, life goes on. I even have my old MK customers whom do not purchase very much, go to touch of pink. It is much easier for them, and they pay the shipping etc. So I don’t even have to bother with it.

    Just to let you know, Avon is a Multi-level marketing company now, and you can really tell. They are trying to get all of us in President’s club and higher to recruit like crazy. Nope, I won’t do that, and in fact, I sent a letter to my division manager that I will no longer be selling Avon, MK or anything else. I am planning on purchasing my boat come the end of September, and next summer, I will be on the boat all of the summer season. In winter, which is just around the corner, I will be quilting, and do my paintings. I go to bible study 3 times per week, and I figured that is what I want to do from now on. As soon as our DM told us we needed to start recruiting to get those big paychecks I thought…..yeah , right, just so you can get a better paycheck from Avon. Her statement hit a sour note for me, and just yesterday….I had had enough. My last avon statement charged me 7 times for extra orders which by the way, cost 10.00 each time you submit another order for the same campaign. So a part of my profit of 70.00 dollars went to avon for the fake charges of extra orders. That really got my goat, and I said that was it….I am not supporting companies that charge huge amounts for stupid costs when their staff make less than 7 dollars per hour.

    Forgive my ranting….I will go back to playing pogo, and will have a great evening. Yeah Tracy, Yeah Touch of Pink….good riddens MLM’s

  • Consultant says:
    19 September 2008

    Jeni,

    I don’t take to kindly to your smart remarks. Same as you, I had a bunch of emails that came in showing respones that why I looked. Same as today I got an email with your response. I do have a real job working 40 hours a week with benefits making very good money, been here 10years. Obvioulsy you didn’t read what I orignally wrote and the reason I am a consultant. The only reason I came back is because I find all of this a little funny. With all the real life issues in the world people have their focus on this one. Plus because we have the freedom to say what we choose and every one has their own opinions you have to have some good in the middle of all the bad that is written. That’s what makes this such a wonderful country.

    Also, the customers that I do have, I don’t sell to any of them at full price. I know MK is expenses but it is a good product, that is why I am a consultant.

    Have a great day!!

  • Consultant says:
    19 September 2008

    SORRY! I have a typo (that’s why I looked).

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    19 September 2008

    We know the truth. You just can’t stay away. You know in your heart we’re right. We don’t mind. Stick around. You’ll come around eventually.

  • Consultant says:
    19 September 2008

    Yes there are some directors that push it to the extreme but there are some that don’t. Mine is not one of them. But it is like that all over the world with everything. You have some that go overboard and some that don’t. And all the comments are hurting the ones that don’t. I guess the old saying is true “The good suffer for the bad”. I keep coming back because if someone reads this they need to have all the facts not just the bad. The good too. And you know in your heart I am right too. I know the truth also.

  • Jeni says:
    19 September 2008

    Keep on coming back consultant….because yes!, you do know the truth as do the rest of us. MK is a scam as well as ALL mlm’s. You must know this or else why would you keep coming and commenting on this board? You won’t make money in MK and since you said you make great money at your real job, why bother using MK? There are so many different brands out there that really work, and in all honesty, to know if MK is really a GREAT product, go out and try the others. Go to a salon and see the different types of skin care they use on their clients.

    As for my “smart remarks”, well, they are my remarks, and I stick to them.

    You say you keep coming back because when someone reads this they need to have all the facts, not just the bad. I say MK is bad because it is. Look around you girl. People are losing their jobs, homes, etc, and the MK slashers keep coming around saying you need to have a full store, you can make money….blech…

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    19 September 2008

    For the record Jeni, I like your smart remarks!

  • Consultant says:
    19 September 2008

    Yes I keep coming back. I have tried other brands and NO they did not work. MK was the best one for me. Also for my teenage son. I tried other products on him & they did not work, but as soon as he started using MK 3-in-1 cleansing bar & the acne gel his face cleared up.

    Your opinion is that they are bad. That’s your opinion. I have come across directors and consultants that push too much. But on the other hand I know directors and consultants that don’t and I am one of them. I don’t hound the customers that I have. They get a book every quarter and when they are ready to order something they contact me. I don’t call them. And like I said before I don’t charge full price for the items I sell. I don’t make money. But I love the product and I know it works so I want other people out there to get the product without breaking the bank.

    The people that have lost their jobs, homes, etc… are irresponsible and shouldn’t be trying to do any kind of business until they have a lesson on managing money. Look at all the other people in the world that have lost their jobs, homes, etc… & never came in contact with MK.

    The directors and consultants that are quote “bad” didn’t hold a gun to those peoples head or steal their credit card. Those people made a decission to buy full inventory.

    Every heard of “Buyers Remorse”. Well HELLO it happens everywhere. And it wasn’t Mary Kay that caused it. People need to grow up and make smart choices and stop blamming everyone else for their mistakes.

  • Heather says:
    19 September 2008

    Wow! I’m seriously amazed at the hate going on here, lmao For a website that says it wants to help people, you sure are pouring on the meaness. You do realize that if you really want people to take you seriously, you might want to act with more maturity and compassion instead of basically telling people they are idiots for buying or selling Mary Kay. People are more apt to listen to someone and take them seriously if they at least pretend to be caring about others instead of launching a personal hate campaign. If you came across as really caring about women being taken advantage of, then it seems like you would “speak” with more focus on telling these women in a positive way what YOU see as the negatives of getting involved with this company, as opposed to making them feel stupid for having been involved or thinking of getting involved. It seems somewhere deep down you MIGHT care about “saving” others (although you do seem to suffer from a bit of a Jesus complex), but what comes across is 99% bitterness and hate. You and your site remind me of those annoying TV commercials, you know, the ones that irritate you so much that it makes you want to NOT buy a product even if you liked before you saw it. Your site and your lovely hateful attitude towards Mary Kay is so thinly disguised with the “I do this because I care about saving others from pain” bravado that you are probably causing women doing research on this company to go out in droves and become brainwashed consultants, lmao I wanted to do some research on this company due to a good friend going back to wanting to sell Mary Kay again after working for a national jewelry store chain where she has been a manager for 13 years. She’s actually willing to ditch a fantastic job making great money and cool perks like free trips to go back to her “pink bubble” so I wanted to see why the hell she would want to. Since I’ve seen no real concrete proof of your facts (especially the 99% money loss “fact”) and no real evidence that these stories are coming from real people, it seems a huge waste of time to keep being such a, well, total b**** to anyone who actually has had personal success selling for them. Irregardless of the Mary Kay business acumen, it is absolutely no different than anyone who chooses of their own free will to start any kind of business, especially a franchise type of business. That is what this is, a franchise. You are purchasing their products and their name to use, just like any fast-food restaurant, for example. You choose everything about this company, no one can be brainwashed unless they are willing to be. ‘THERE ARE NO VICTIMS, ONLY VOLUNTEERS.” Most small Mom & Pop businesses fail, and that includes ones that start out with no business acumen, structure, whatever. You have to purchase some kind of inventory to sell in any kind of business with products, derrrrrrrr deeee derrrrrr, lmao Unless you are selling those long distance minutes I’m so fond of, LOL So all of the complaints of those who have gone broke, lied, cheated, whatever to try to make a go of a Mary Kay business and failed are looking like even bigger fools to blame Mary Kay, who gave them everything they needed to be successful for $100 EXCEPT doing the job for them. I could understand if someone spent that kind of money and received an empty box and their company support system disappeared on them their complaint about it being all the company’s fault, lol But if someone gives you products and even, as even some who have complained about Mary Kay on here have said, a great business structure and teaching tools, who else’s fault is it that failure has happened but the person who made the CHOICE to do it? Not a single person who has complained about Mary Kay here has taken any responsibility for their personal choices, which makes it so obvious that they are indeed responsible. I keep thinking of how it is commonly known in the restaurant business that MOST, something like around 75% is the quote tossed around, of new restaurants fail, and soon. If you really believe that this company has purposely decided to create a business that ensures 99% of it’s “employees” (or whatever they are called) will fail so the mucky-mucks can get rich, you are the one who is seriously deluded and might want to work on your own personal issues that brought you to this point to be so hateful in the first place and overcome your negativity rather than place ALL blame on the company you chose to invest in. Seriously, why not make this site more about uplifting people on your own so they don’t get suckered in to Mary Kay or other companies like them? Why not try to boost-self esteem or help others finding ways to make money rather than scream at everyone they are stupid and will eventually wake up like who, you did? You still need to wake up, lol, and here is a prayer that you will focus all your negativity into a more enlightening way to help these, what you seem to portray, poor women who didn’t know any better and were taken advantage of. As I said before, there are no victims, only volunteers, so consider less whining ,and more helpful advice than bitter cries of “don’t do it, sucker!”
    Much peace and serenity to all, Mary Kay supporters or detractors, lol

  • Consultant says:
    19 September 2008

    Gloria,

    Thanks for telling us about that website. I have added it to my favorites because from time to time I have someone that wants something that has been discontinued and I don’t have it & you can’t get it through MK so now I have another outlet to look at.

    Thanks,

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    19 September 2008

    Heather,

    Thanks so much for your kind note. Most of your comments have already been addressed here, so I won’t repeat myself.

    However, I have to address one issue you raised, and that’s regarding the 99% figure and how employees lose out at all companies. That’s not really true. Employees at companies are given regular paychecks, so they do “profit” from their work. They may make less than people above them, but they are still being paid for their work.

    In contrast, in Mary Kay, women MUST PAY to be involved. And 99% will never make enough in sales or commissions to turn a profit. So they are losing money, whereas an employee makes money.

    The situations are so different, that it’s not fair to compare them in the way you have.

  • Consultant says:
    19 September 2008

    Tracy,

    To be involved with MK you purchase the starter package that cost $100 dollars. All the products that are in the starter package is worth way more than $100 dollars. So I don’t understand how you are doing your calculations. You need to go back to elementary school and learn your math because that is not a loss. That is a PROFIT!!!

    God bless you Heather!!!!

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    19 September 2008

    Consultant – Almost everyone who gets involved with Mary Kay spends far more than $100. They spend hundreds or thousands of dollars on inventory, and hundreds or thousands of dollars on supplies, events, traveling, and other expenses. When you compare all that is spent to what they’ve sold, 99% end up having lost money.

  • Jackie says:
    19 September 2008

    I wish it was only $100 that a consultant needs to spend. Unfortunately there are many money hungry NSDs and SDs who will immediately talk you into buying $3600 worth of product, which is not needed at all.

    Now before you say “well no one put a gun to your head”, which is the automatic brainwashed consultant response, ( I was one and said it all the time and feel terrible about it), when you’re new and looking up to your recruiter/Sales Director/NSD for guidance and advice and they tell you, you need a full store, you’ll do it if possible.

    Then when you feel guilty about having that debt (Its not an “investment” that’s more MK BS), and share your fears, you’re being “negative” and don’t have enough faith. So you work your a$$ off to book appointments that no one wants to hold and even if you get some clients, they usually buy out of pity and won’t repurchase and you’re stuck with boxes of crappy products in your basement.

    This is when consultants get frustrated because their Directors just tell them to keep booking and have faith and stop being negative…so what is a girl to do???
    Why visit http://www.pinktruth.com of course! Telling the truth is not negative, mean or harmful….its telling THE TRUTH!

  • Consultant says:
    19 September 2008

    But again, that is there CHOICE to buy inventory. And like it was said earlier you can get out and send the product you have back to the company and get 90% of your money back. What other company does that.

    And let me tell you a little something about the events, traveling, training from experience. I go to some of the events, etc… and I have a blast. Have you ever been? I have fun with my sister consultants.

    But just like any business you need training. Most of the training is locally so there are not traveling expenses. Also you can do alot of self training by simply reading the materials.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    19 September 2008

    When have I said it’s NOT a choice? All I’m saying is that women do these things as part of the Mary Kay “opportunity” and end up losing money.

    And anyone in MK knows the truth about the ‘training”… It’s almost no training and almost all trying to recruit new victims into the cult.

  • Jackie says:
    19 September 2008

    Oh you mean Scaminar! What a joke! Those events are held every 3 months for a reason…to keep you brain washed and in the pink fog. I had fun with my friends too….when I wasn’t being brainwashed in the “classes”. We would go dancing and shopping. Dallas is nice, Houston (where my ex-NSD is from) is nice. I went to EVERY event for 5 years and finally woke up.

    You know what real companies do, they PAY for their employees training. I had to pay for plane tickets, hotel, food etc….. Don’t tell me about the tax write-off’s either, that’s a joke!

    CHOICE???I’m sorry but don’t go there! Before you reply with “well no one put a gun to your head”, (which is the common brainwashed consultant response to take the guilt off themselves), if you’re a brand new consultant looking up to your “successful” recruiter/Director/NSD for advice and they tell you, “you can’t be successful unless you have a FULL STORE”, what are you going to do?

    Not every consultant comes into MK with business and money management sense, they’re new and niave and will do what they’re told and then its too late. They got a basement or closet full of crap they can’t sell and are frustrated at themselves and their upline’s lack of good advice. All they get is “book more”, “have faith” “your deserve level isn’t high enough” or the “well you’re just being negative”!

    So what is a girl to do??? Why visit http://www.pinktruth.com of course. Its the best choice I ever made in my MK “career”. You get the answers that MK Corp won’t tell you and you learn up to a year in advance of any changes, since corpse won’t tell you until its too late and you’re stuck with obsolete products.

    Thank God for Tracy and the ladies and gentlemen on Pink Truth for helping me by being honest, not negative or mean to me at all!

    Have a great weekend everyone!

  • Consultant says:
    19 September 2008

    A cult. You are now searching for words and things to say.

    Again, as I said before have you ever been to any actual MK training?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    19 September 2008

    Yes, I have been to plenty of MK events.

    Your game of gotcha is not working.

    By the way… Is writing here an income-producing activity for you?

  • Consultant says:
    19 September 2008

    Jackie,

    It is Ok to tell the truth. But there are many different truths. It depends on the Director and/or consultant. Because as I said before the girls I am with or not in any way like how you have said. I have seen some like that but if we are going to tell the truth it needs to be told from both vantage points.

  • Consultant says:
    19 September 2008

    But have you been a consultant and gone to an actual training?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    19 September 2008

    Yes. Duh.

  • Consultant says:
    19 September 2008

    Tracy,

    In a way it is a “income-producing activity”. Because any one who comes to this site will get both sides so they can form their own opinion and not just be overwhelmed with your crap.

  • Jackie says:
    19 September 2008

    Oh and speaking about Scaminar, my last one was 2 yrs ago, so was my Career Conference, and I noticed a HUGE drop in debuting Directors. From my first Scaminar in 2003 to looking at the pics of this past year’s, its wonderful that so many women are wising up, doing their research and realizing that this business will only lead you to debt, debt and more debt the higher you go!

    I’d like to think that Pink Truth had a lot to do with it. That’s why I post there and here from time to time. If I can help just one person get out of this MLM, and stop getting themselves into deeper debt, then its worth the time to do so.

  • DeeDee says:
    19 September 2008

    Tracy Cohen, “pinktruth”, whatever, you should have respect for women’s intelligence. If a Mary Kay consultant is successful, more power to her. If not, she can quit. Sales is an art that some master and some don’t, whatever the product may be. And do you think the consultant’s customers are stupid? They don’t have to buy if they’re not happy with the product, just as is the case with a zillion other products and services available to consumers. Jeez–get a life.

  • Jeni says:
    19 September 2008

    Thanks Tracy!

    Jackie, I never went to scaminar, and it is probably a good thing I did not go…I would have lost patience with all the waiting around and being led like cattle to the “events” room. OMG, I can just hear my ex SD getting all upset because I would probably have said, “”” can we hurry up here?, I have got to go to the bathroom.””” I would have said it in not a very christian tone , so whoops, I would not get the go give award for that mistake. I also am glad I stumbled across pink truth, and although I did go back into MK after I sent my stuff back, I can now see much more clearly. Yep! “Took me 2 times to get screwed”. I did not even get a thank you ma’am or even enjoy it ( if you get my drift…LOL )

    Jackie, next Saturday I am having a blow out yard sale. MK, Avon, and Suzanne all on tables from $1 – $30.00 I am hyped. All section 2 items will be really cheap, and I can still make a bit of money on the deal. I even have the new winter items ready with their cute little bags and the new lighter fragrances, all ready to be whisked away by all the women who do purchase MK. I will place 3 ads in the newspaper next week, and I will list all items that will be of interest to customers and MK’ers alike. Cannot wait to get rid of this garbage, and yes I said it… G…A…R…B…A…G…E…! “Can you feel the love?”

    Consultant: One day you will realize there is a reason for this thread and for PinkTruth. You will be one of us, and soon too. Did you know that another one of the big direct sellers is thinking of purchasing MK?
    Did you know that the evil spawn is thinking of selling the company? No , I did not think you knew that…not many do. I had the opportunity to talk with the CEO of this other Direct Sales Co. and was privy to sharp conversations regarding the degredation of Scary Kay

    Also, yes MK advertises 100.00 dollar starter kits, but you and I and the rest of the world know that any good sales director or SSD or ESSD or National is not going to let her out of the door without at least 600.00 Dollars in her hot little hands. They are trained for that! You know it, I know it! It is called strike the “hot button” or some such nonsense. You know as well as anyone that those products you receive in your starter kit are not all products, most are sales materials, and the foundations that NO ONE wants…geez girl, get a grip. Remember, and don’t forget….MKA’s evil spawn is going to sell all of you down the river sooner than you think. Get out now, send your MK crap back, and live a decent and honest life.

    Heather, your article ran so long, I could not even stand to read it all the way , I will try again tomorrow to see if it makes any more sense than it did earlier. bwaahhaaaaaa…..

    Later all, Jen

    ps Tracy? If you want to know more about what I heard, please e-mail me where I can give you the information in private. You already have my home e-mail….love ya…Jeni

  • consultant says:
    21 September 2008

    No I am not talking about seminar. I am talking about the weekly meetings and the weekend training. Which introduces us to the new products, how to use them and proper techinque of applying makeup. Those are training!!!!!!!

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    21 September 2008

    Oh, you mean like “Muffins & Makeovers”??? We all know it’s not about a makeover or about learning any makeup techniques. Those are strictly recruiting events. Weekly meetings are recruiting events as well. (Except, of course, the shaking of the pink pom-poms and wearing pink boas while we dance around and sing Pink Cadillac. That’s not about recruiting.)

  • consultant says:
    21 September 2008

    NO I am not talking about Muffins & Makeovers. That one you are suppose to bring guests. I am talking about actually training.

    You obviously had a very bad experience.

    I am sorry I can not agree with you. The group I am with is in to way like what you are the others have described. I am sorry they have had such a bad experience.

    Here is what I suggest for any one thinking about becoming a MK consultant:

    1. Buy your $100 starter kit.

    2. Once you have received it schedule your open house.

    3. During Open house take orders collect 1/2 of the money and use it to order their products.

    4. Once products are in fill orders & collect rest of money.

    5. Use the rest of the money to invest back into your business. Buy a few products to place on your shelf so you will have items for you to use and to refill some of the customers orders when they run out.

    6. Do your preferred customer every quarter so customers are getting the book.

    7. Order as you need it.

    8. Do your facials and skin care classes.

    If you do it this way you will make money.

    Then it is your option if you want to recruit. I personally don’t. But I have come across people that want to be a MK consultant. I have been doing it for over 4 years and have two team members. They wanted to do it. I didn’t ask them. When I do facials and skin care classes I don’t try to recruit I only try to show them the product and hope to add them as a customer. My main goal is to get them on a great skin care system.

  • Jeni says:
    21 September 2008

    consultant: If that is the way you do your business, then bully for you! My SD was all about lies. She lied about why she did not want a pink caddy, she lied when I asked her if pinktruth was right when they told us MK was coming out with new everything. She lied about EVERYTHING! I was never so ashamed of myself because I smoke, and she told me I could not smoke a cigarette before our weekly meetings because she was deathly allergic, and she could smell it on me and another consultant. She told me that my cigs make me look old. UGH! She is the one who made me look icky, imho. However, My SSD is a wonderful woman, and although filled with MK doctrine, I really do like her. When I asked my ex SD who was ahead of her ( in my mind I was ready to go to her upline ), she told me that it was only her, no one except the NSD emeritus was above her. Only 1 year later did I find out we had a SSD, and a ESSD, and those two were sisters. LOL

    So, I am glad that you do your business well. You must really understand that not all MKers are like you. The most are just liars, and thieves, and dream stealers. My SD wanted us to all look alike, act alike, talk alike, and you know, I just don’t think that is right.

    I had some wonderful marketing ideas for my business 2 years ago, and she looked at me in horror, and told me that people would laugh at me and not do it. I felt I was being bashed every which way because I did not conform to her way of thinking. UGH!!! I am so glad I am out of that mess.

    Remember though, that it really is not your business. MK can pull the plug on you at any time. If they want to get rid of directors at a whim of 1000 or so within a years time, no one is safe with the business model that is called MK.

    Have a great week all, and be good to yourselves. Jen

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    21 September 2008

    Here’s what I suggest for anyone considering becoming a Mary Kay consultant: RUN FOR YOUR LIFE.Get as far away from Mary Kay as fast as you can. Their overpriced Wal-mart quality products suck and you’re unlikely to turn a profit. Don’t waste your time!

  • consultant says:
    21 September 2008

    Tracy explain to me why MK is always #1 in skin care and color cosmetics? Explain to me why MK is the only thing out their that cleared my skin, my son, my mother and my customers?

    I turn a profit!

    Jeni, thanks for you comments. It is all in who recruits you. I can’t believe your SD said the things she did. Any time I think of an marketing idea my SD is very supportive and encouraging. If my SD behaved the way yours did I would have gotten out too.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    21 September 2008

    LOL – Mary Kay is NOT the #1 brand. I know it’s fun to promote that lie, but it’s simply not true. Mary Kay pays to be part of a very, very small study of brands and in the end… voila! Mary Kay is #1. They don’t account for the hundreds of other brands out there.

    And, of course Mary Kay is not really selling to customers. They’re selling to their consultants, who are the REAL customers. Those consultants, by and large, have hundreds and thousands of dollars of unsold products in their homes. Why? Because consumers don’t want the crap.

    Please send me your tax returns to prove that you’re turning a profit. Feel free to hide your social security number. I just want the dollars and cents anyway.

  • consultant says:
    21 September 2008

    You know just as well as I do when you have a self employed business your tax return is not accurate. So don’t give me that crap. My husband is self employeed so once you deduct for every thing the income is not accurate.

    That is not a lie. MK beats all the other skin care out in the market.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    21 September 2008

    No, I don’t know that tax returns are not accurate. But I’d be happy to report you to the IRS for tax evasion, which is what you seem to be saying you’re doing. You’re either cheating on your taxes and showing a loss when you really have a profit…. Or you’re not cheating on your taxes and you have a loss, so your earlier claims of being profitable are a lie.

    SO WHICH LIE IS IT??? Somehow I knew you’d prove yourself a liar one way or another.

    Mary Kay does NOT beat all other skin care, and I’d dare you to prove your claim, but I already know you can’t. There is no such proof.

    LIES, LIES, LIES.

    Shame on you….

  • consultant says:
    21 September 2008

    LOL. Once you deduct for mileage, phones, electricity, etc… You don’t show a big profit. So don’t start such crap with me. Smart A_ _!

  • consultant says:
    21 September 2008

    And no my profit is not big because as I stated earlier I don’t sell my MK products at full price to any one.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    21 September 2008

    So selling Mary Kay is profitable or not? And you’re lying or not? Or the profits are miniscule? What were your profits for last year on your tax return? How much time did you spend on MK?

    I’m willing to bet that you made minimum wage or less selling Mary Kay. (And you probably made NOTHING, you’re just scared now that I pointed out your tax problem.)

  • consultant says:
    21 September 2008

    I will get with my CPA to get a copy of my returns. My house is in distruction right now because we have been remodling and I don’t know where anything is. But as I said I did make a profit, even selling everything at a discounted rate. And I do not work it like other consultants. Especially over the last year because I have three sons one of which was hospitalized last year and was diagnoised being bi-polar at the age of 10. So it has been a really rough year. But I would be more than happy to get those figures for you.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    21 September 2008

    Sounds like an awful lot of backpedaling to me. Your fabulous Mary Kay opportunity isn’t looking so fabulous anymore.

  • HAVURAH says:
    22 September 2008

    Tracy, you are getting all verklempt! Consultant, you are some sort of self abuser masquerading as the ultimate good Samaritan. This is a very entertaining thread.

    Consultant, you are also addicted to the Pink Truth and try as you might to fight it, you need the Pink Truth more than it needs you. In addition, you make your own self a magnet for abuse and then you capitulate and go along with the abuser.

    I fail to understand why anyone who thinks through the commitment would enter into the Devil’s pack with an MLM such as Mary Kay and then proceed to sell the products at a discount. No one enters into business not to make an income, yet you brag that that is exactly what you have done and then ground your financial foolishness in a mission to give everyone good skin. What happened to feeding the hungry, clothing the naked and putting a roof over the homeless? GOOD SKIN?

    I’m plotzing.

    Consultant, if you’ve read my comeents on both boards, you know that I maintain that people cannot be saved from themselves. You have pressing family needs, a home in semi construction costing more money as it devalues in the current market, perverse need to poke the dog in the eye, run away and then come back to poke the dog again….and your mission is good skin for strangers?

    The sorry truth is that among womens’ petty fears, the biggest fear is running into a Mary Kay “consultant”. Current business advice from directors mostly involves badgering acquaintances, bullsh!tting strangers and cornering cowering women who do not want to have to be rude to make you go away.

    A victim in the clutches of a hungry Mary Kay “consultant” will say anything to remove you from her space and then refuse to take calls or answer the doorbell. This is what torture is all about and why it fails as a doctrine. Soldiers get water boarded and civilians get Mary Kay recruited. In fact, I think the United States should attempt a mass air drop of Mary Kay consultants on Iran with the intent of recruiting the political titans there who run the structure of the country. They will beg the United States to take back the women with the promise of reform and freedom for all if we will just take the pink women back.

    I’ve got to run. I will finish this up later. I sort of like the offensive tactic of the pink army invading hostile states and using their recruiting training to induce the hostile leaders to mend their ways or their wives will become consultants.

    Pampering party at Kim Jong Il’s anyone?

  • Consultant says:
    22 September 2008

    No I am not backpedaling. I will get it for you.

    And you took that other out of context. When you look at you profit and loss from business form you can’t go by the income amount at the top because you have expenses and when you deduct mileage, cost of the product, portion of your cell phone, the products that were given away, products used for demos, PRODUCTS YOU PERSONALLY USE CAN BE DEDUCTED (did you know that), etc… the final profit and loss figure is not a totally fair figure (accurate wasnt a good word).

  • Jeni says:
    22 September 2008

    Good Morning All; Well, today I have a girl coming to take ALL of my Mary Kay, Suzanne, and Avon OUT of my house. I am just giving it all to her. She is not a consultant for any MLM. I am tired of having all of this junk in my home. It reminds me of the LIES told to me by my SD, by Suzanne , and now even Avon is pushing the recruiting bull. Suzanne, which is by Suzanne Somers, dropped all of us consultants, and sold us to another company, and I cannot even get hold of the main office because they all went elsewhere. Suzanne Somers is a snot, a liar, overpriced crap from China distributors. Don’t ever purchase anything from Suzanne Somers, even on HSN. She is NUTS!!!

    Avon showed me how cheap they are by telling us to recruit, recruit, recruit. I don’t want to recruit.

    Mary Kay is selling their consultants down the river, and it will soon be proven. I must admit, MK is too high on their products. I looked online as to how these cosmetic companies do business and manufacture products. Wow, did I get an education. They ( cosmetic companies ) buy large barrel full of certain chemicals from china, and incorporate them together here in the states, add a good marketing gig, fancy package, and bam, they have cosmetics that they sell to you for big bucks, and it only costs the companies probably 30 cents per jar, then you add shipping, etc, and that is that.

    I could not use Avon skin care because of all of the perfume they have in the skin care line, and made my face raw, itch, and created bumps. One of the anew products made my eyes red for a week, and I only used it one night.

    Ladies; I suggest that you go to Sephora, or to your local mall, and purchase Clinique. It is a skin care brand that has no perfume, and they have wonderful colors for a new look. I , as I have mentioned before on Pinktruth.com , have found a wonderful new skin care regimen called Repechage. It is wonderful. You can purchse it online , or to get the whole treatment, go to your local salon and ask if they can get it for you. You can get a trial kit for 50 dollars and it lasts ALL month long. I really like the product, and it really does work for a beautiful , fresh look and feel.

    You cannot make money doing MLM’s. Multi Level Marketing is like a male cat with kittens. He will eat every one of them to get rid of them, and have the mother pregnant within another month. I know that sounds raw, but it is the truth. If you want your own business, write a book for children, open your home to people who have no home, and in need of a fresh hot meal. Or if you are uncomfortable with that, make a few hot meals, put them on a plate, and distribute those packaged meals to older people who have no family. They would really appreciate that. Make yourself useful to organizations that need you. The Red Cross, Salvation Army, or learn to sew and make blankets for people who have no way to keep warm in winter. Learn to make your own beer, slap a label on it, and sell it. LOL, could not help that one, it is funny to me.

    OK, I have ranted on for awhile, sorry all. Had to get it off of my chest.

    Tracy, when I first came to you on pinktruth, I too, thought you were negative. I was ready to defend any business model. Now, these last 2 years, you have taught me so much. I have had to review my questions and my answers of the 2 years I have been on your site, and realize that YOU and the others on pinktruth were correct all along.

    I applaude you and the others for your sincerity, your honesty, your comments, and most of all the REAL PINK TRUTH!!! With that being said, I bid you all a great day. Time to go to my accountant, and face the music. He is going to be so mad at me for spending so much money on these mlm’s, and then just give it away. Oh well, it is not his money.

    with love, Jen

  • Jackie says:
    22 September 2008

    Believe me MK is NOT #1. You see MK does not track actual sales and when consultants are ordering $600 and up packages, well sure it’ll look like MK is selling tons of product to clients, but nope, its all to consultants.

    They have been telling this lie for over a decade and I believed it as well, I was super brainwashed. I defended that statement with a vengence. Its such BS. If MK was to actually track real sales to the end user, no way in heck will it be #1.

  • Jackie says:
    22 September 2008

    Also consultant, I’m sorry you had a bad year. But I urge you to visit Pink Truth. I sounded just like you a year ago. I took my time daily reading all the posts, pros and cons and everyone’s personally stories. I wanted to make absolutely sure that what I was experiencing wasn’t just because I wasn’t working hard enough, because I was.

    I wish you luck with your business, but please keep an open mind. MK Corp will only tell you what they want you to know, not the whole truth. Pink Truth finds out up to a year in advance about changes in the product line and other important information re: your business.

    There are many consultants who still work their business and read PT on a daily basis, because their directors lie. Plain and simple. Sales and recruiting are down in MK overall and don’t be surprised if the company is sold off very soon! Did you know this?

    You really have no control over your business and they can terminate at any time for any reason! It gets worse when you’re a Director! I didn’t know this until I visited PT. You owe it to yourself and your family to really know what’s going on and not just what your Director tells you.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    22 September 2008

    Again, the “final profit and loss figure” IS FAIR AND ACCURATE unless you’re cheating on your taxes. You can only deduct legitimate business expenses, and those legitimate expenses eat into your profit.

    You should also know that products you personally use CANNOT BE DEDUCTED. If you’re deducting them, you’re committing tax fraud.

    From IRS site, Publication 334, Tax Guide for Small Business:

    Purchases. If you take any inventory items for your personal use (use them yourself, provide them to your family, or give them as personal gifts, etc.) be sure to remove them from the cost of goods sold. For details on how to adjust cost of goods sold, see Merchandise withdrawn from sale in chapter 6.

    http://www.irs.gov/publications/p334/ch07.html

  • Consultant says:
    22 September 2008

    Oh my G_ _! I went on the sight and read it. I was always told that it was a deduction. Oh my G_ _!

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    22 September 2008

    What else has Mary Kay lied to you about?

  • Consultant says:
    22 September 2008

    I am starting to see your point. I guess I need to do a little more research myself.

  • Lee D says:
    22 September 2008

    Sorry to intrude, but I’d like to point out that if “Consultant” does provide tax returns as proof, the top line income is just as important, if not more so, than her net figure after expenses.

    Turning a profit after expenses is an important thing, no doubt, and I see Tracy’s point about the onerous costs involved in pimping cosmetics. But let’s not forget that without substantial income, no matter what your expenses, you’re just chasing your tail. So what’s the gross? $50K? $100K? $25K? $1.5K?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    22 September 2008

    Seeeee – I’m not as horrible and mean as you think I am!

  • Consultant says:
    22 September 2008

    I just looked on the MK site & it says that you can NOT deduct for non-business use. But there were many training things I went through over 4years ago and was told on many different occasions buy many different SD’s that it was. I am just in shock. I will definetly ask my SD about it. That just really opens the door for my questions!!!!!

  • Consultant says:
    22 September 2008

    You can tell I am upset because I have alot of typo’s and I proofread it.

    Sorry!!!!

  • Jeni says:
    22 September 2008

    consultant; Honey don’t worry. You are now getting the real truth, and although it can be a bitter pill to swallow, it is an education that will remain with you the rest of your life. Never let anyone dupe you into something that seems to good to be true. If it looks like a rat, smells like a rat, it probably is a rat.

    Many of us were fooled at one time or another. Look at Tracy. She is an investigator, and she was in MK. It goes to show you, that some people are great at spinning truths, ie:
    GMB, and others.

    Mary Kay is not number one nor were they ever number 1.

    Have a relaxing evening, and don’t worry about the world of MK, it won’t be around very long anyway.

  • cuty says:
    23 September 2008

    pls can any explain to me more about this mary kay becos i just sign the contract and am expecting the market tools and some product 2morw…pls i need some advice

  • Andrea says:
    24 September 2008

    oh man mary kay is a blessing, Mary Kay is for Every Winner People not for The loosers… I’m Sorry for all you That not have reached nothing Here or never Tried…Thank You God for May Kay

  • Jeni says:
    24 September 2008

    cuty: Please go to the website of http://www.pinktruth.com. You will find many women whom have been in Mary Kay, and got OUT!! You will find many reasons why.

    Whomever recruited you, call them back, tell them you have changed your mind, and don’t listen to their dribble, just ask for the money and give them your MK junk back.

    to Andrea: Mary Kay is NOT a blessing. It is one of the business’s besides Amway, that will ruin your life. How can I take you seriously when you do not proof read your mail before you send it. I am a winner, and it had nothing to do with Mary Kay. So you define yourself as a winner because of MK? That is really pathetic. You must be new in MK and have not had to go thru the dribble as yet, or if you are a seasoned consultant, you really need to learn to spell. OH MAN, you
    are the looooooooser…..

  • Consultant says:
    24 September 2008

    Tracy,

    I just want to say Thank You! I don’t know what brought me to this site to begin with and what I was looking for when I found it, but I have always been a firm believer that God does things for a reason. Weird huh? I have alot of questions for my SD and can’t wait to hear her responses.

    Also, Seeeee – I’m not as horrible and mean as you think I am! LOL
    I just speak strongly about what I believe in.

    Thanks again,

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    24 September 2008

    You’re welcome! Also take a look at pinktruth.com. You can register there and get access to our discussion board, where lots of women can help answer your questions and share their stories with you.

  • Jeni says:
    24 September 2008

    consultant, bully for you!!!! honey, your sales director will lie to you , and you will want to believe her. Don’t ask questions that need explanations. Ask questions that require yes or no answers. You will soon see that she will not answer yes or no, but will dribble her way around the real truth.

    I commend you for thinking about what tracy has told you, and please go to pinktruth.com. You will find so many women that have been sales directors and up, that have found what a losing proposition MK really is

    I am not sure where you live but there are so many ways to make a living, without working an eight to five job. If you need benefits, then by all means work at a place where you get the bennies. You will be much happier. In the summer time, yard sales are a BIG thing to make money at. If you live in a wooded area, and have a chain saw, cut up wood for sale during winter time.

    Ask me anything you want, if I cannot give you the answers , I can find them out for you….with love, Jen

  • The Man says:
    30 September 2008

    Here is not a theory, but a fact from the federal research I have done on this company. MaryKay is like a psychic with caller ID, The tell people what they want to here and make a profit off it. My girlfriend is currently in it and she claims its satisfying her but in reality I have been looking at her mood changes and her money being thrown away with very very very very very VERY little profit. As her mood changes for the worse…the worse our relationship is getting, thanks a lot MaryKay supporters and staff. Way to turn my woman Sexest.

  • Connie says:
    4 October 2008

    Tracy, I am curious where you got your statistic about 99% of the women failing who try Mary Kay?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    4 October 2008
  • Connie says:
    4 October 2008

    Thanks for the info. It appears they didn’t study Mary Kay. Is this the only place you are using for that 99% failure rate?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    4 October 2008

    Connie – They didn’t study Mary Kay because Mary Kay won’t release the numbers. Why do you suppose that is? (Oh yes, I know that as a private company there’s no requirement to release those numbers to anyone. I just think that if Mary Kay really was such a wonderful opportunity, they’d be dying to prove it. And don’t think that they don’t have these numbers. They have all the proof in the world that there is a miserable failure rate among consultants and directors and consumers are losing a couple billion dollars a year with their putrid “opportunity.”)

    I’m confident enough in all the companies that they DID study (and the fact that these results are replicated over and over again, each time they do the study) that Mary Kay’s numbers are exactly like these.

    Let me guess… You’re about to say, “But Mary Kay is different.”

    LOL

  • Connie says:
    5 October 2008

    I responded earlier, but don’t see my comment, so I will answer again. I was not about to say anything of the kind. I don’t know if Mary Kay is different or not – I didn’t study any of them. I just tend to verify things I read when someone uses a statistic because so often, people just throw them out there. Thank you for the info. I stumbled onto your site looking for something else. I will stumble off now. Thanks for your time.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 October 2008

    No problem Connie. We don’t allow personal attacks (see the note about the comment box) which is why your comment wasn’t published.

  • Mercedes says:
    5 October 2008

    My mother worked in the Mary Kay business and quited not too long ago. She was in the business for more than 5 years. She hated the people she recruited because they were lazy. Depressed women who made excuses for themselves. They used people and wasted others’ time. My mom was a hard working woman in Mary Kay. She almost got her pink cadillac, she had a red car the one after the Grand Am stopped getting supplied. My mom now works a different job. She is happy. She hasn’t looked back. She didn’t have to stay in Mary Kay, but I have to say that even though she wasn’t always satisfied with her recruits we did meet some amazing people because of the requirement of her talking to strangers that no other job would’ve provided. Meeting people who work in the entertainment industry (we live in NY), it’s inspiring. You never know who you might bump into. Mary Kay has left a mark on my mom, brother’s and my life.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 October 2008

    It sounds to me like your mom was the lazy one! If she really wanted to get to Cadillac, she would have recruited more! Sounds like she didn’t work the numbers. If she would have just worked a little harder, she could have realized her Mary Kay dream.

    (All of the above is sarcastic. It’s the same tripe that the Kaybots spew on a regular basis. But it seems appropriate since you’re saying it’s not your mom’s fault, it’s all those lazy people she recruited.)

  • Mercedes says:
    5 October 2008

    All I was saying Tracy (I think I understand your sarcasm) is that my mom worked all night and day for that cadillac for more than eight years. A lazy woman would’ve given up in two months (which most of them did). She made appointments, she had the enthusiasm. She got excited everytime Mary Kay came out with a new suit. She got her bumble bee pendant, she had to come across shady women in that business but she spent her inventory.

  • Teresa Botial says:
    6 October 2008

    who cares if the customer likes the products and it fits their budget they don’t really care how they profit.

  • Jolie Halsey says:
    11 October 2008

    At first I felt like the author of this article. But what I realize is that MK is what you make it. I am not in it to just make money. Just about everyone who tries our products loves them. I decided that I would built up my clientele and learn the needs of the people around me. If that means that I don’t make money for a while, so be it. I believe that Mary Kay can be a service. Don’t let the greedy ones in the group change who you are.

  • TRMcAdams says:
    13 October 2008

    I’m glad that I got off the MK Tread Mill.
    It affected my marriage, my friendships, and
    my self esteem. If I wasn’t having or hosting
    parties I was of no concern. I also was a victim
    of front loading….to the tune of $4800.00.
    MK makes for good Christmas gifts for years to come.

  • LolaAV says:
    2 November 2008

    Wow this is amazing. I have my MK business and absolutely love it. Although I am doing it part-time it has been a great experience. I have used my business to help charities and my philantrophy efforts and it’s been a great ride for me. My director is so inspiring and there are no pressures of making inventory purchases or recruiting forcibly. My team have truly made a profit and we help each other. Some of us work have families and enjoy the extra income this has given us. I have met so many unbelievable women that have truly inspired me both in Mk and in my customers. I don’t have a problem selling these wonderful products because they speak for themselves. I definitely read the good and the bad about MK because I feel you need to know both sides. But I chose to give it a try as each person’s experience is unique. Every job you do has it’s ups and downs but I have made this an opportunity of a lifetime for me. I am truly thriving and helping other woman to thrive also. I did the initial $100 investment and build my inventory with book sales and did fantastic. I built a team from people that came to me personally to ask about the opportunity and I was honest by sharing my experience. My ladies are doing so well and some have already quick their jobs and doing this full time. I have made this into what I wanted into a successful business. In this bad economic times, women still buy cosmetics no matter what and look to make extra money too. I see many bad experience here from others but that was not the case for me. I have done so many charity events and feel so fulfilled that MK gives me the opportunity to do that. I hope that my experience shows others that not everyone has a bad experience.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    2 November 2008

    Would you care to share how much profit you showed on your tax returns in each of the last five years and how much money each charity has gotten from you for the last five years?

  • Kathyw/ak says:
    3 November 2008

    I’m wondering who is trying to “sell” here. After all there are some adds at the top of this web site! Please listen. There are different jobs for different people. And there are many different types of people. And yes there are people that use deception to try to gain. We all sin. And we all have been given the same amount of opportunity to repent and turn from that sin. A lot of people have life long struggles with lying. Some of these people will end up in MK. The temptation will be too great for them and they will succumb. However, God has given everyone the ability to discern what is right and wrong and if we choose not to use it then it’s our lose. I do use MK and quite enjoy it. I have thought about becoming a consultant just to get the product at cost and extend that privilege to friends and family. I realize that there may be pressure to do more but that’s to be expected in a sales industry. I need to know my limitations and respond accordingly. Life is sometimes hard and its experiences likewise. If we learn from those experiences then we have succeeded. If we don’t then we have no else to blame but ourselves. You can say “It’s their fault!” But living with a continued attitude of blame is only sucking the joy out of your life. Why not spend your energies and giftedness on more far reaching activities, such as helping people learn what is a good investment for them? (Financially as well as time wise?) There’s a lot of good to be learned from the old saying “You draw more flies with honey than you do with vinegar.” Tracy is trying to sell books that may never be read or
    representation that may not win a case the same as MK is trying to keep a business afloat. Both have products to sell and both need to be as
    responsible as they know how. But no one is the devil. He is himself
    and he is to blame for original sin. However Jesus overcame sin and the grave so that we can have a new start. And if we choose Jesus over the
    world then we will have the Holy Spirit to lead and to guide us. There are only two ways to live. Either for God or for the world. If you conduct your business accordingly then you will (eventually) reap what you sew! Be self-less instead of selfish as a Christian and God will honor that. If you say you are a Christian and you don’t live like one
    then you will not benefit from that position. People are not perfect.
    Only God is. Yes there are those that need to be brought to justice, however we are responsible as Christians to love each other as Christ loved the church and gave Himself up for her. Tell these directors that what they are doing is not right and find another director. If that doesn’t work then quit the business. But realize that you have the responsibility and the opportunity to research an endeavor just the same as everyone else. Thoroughly. The product is good. It sells itself.
    If you can’t afford to buy it then don’t. If you can’t afford to sell
    it then don’t. Know God, then you’ll know yourself and others.

  • covered247 says:
    3 November 2008

    Wow, its been fun reading all these comments, so I thought I’d add a comment, MLM aka Network Marketing, Direct Sales or Referral Marketing IS LEGAL in the USA, hence all these thousands of companies, thanks to Amway winning the case against the US government in the over 20yrs ago and paving the way for STE, Mona Vie, YTB, Mary Kay Avon and Tupperware and countless other companies, any company that is found practices are shut down, so for these companies to be still around speaks for itself. The bottom kline is that our economy sucks, and average people are finding it very hard to survive on $15 per hour, and to make matters worst 97% of Americans are retiring broke, surviving on a SS check is NOT an easy task (I know because my mom is 72 and still working because she cannot survive on her SS income) That oart of the countrys succes plan is not mentioned and according to the Bureau of Labor statics 97% of our population is finding out that fact too late, more pwower to anyone that realises that poverty is a curse and are positioning themselves to find financial freedom. I am not in STE, but I am proud to say that I AM IN ANOTHER NETWORK MARKETING COMPANY….by the way, I bank with Wachovia and they offer me $25 for every customer that I refer (recruit) to open an account with them…….hmmmmmmmmm guess the banks are Pyramid schems also. I’ve also noticed that the only one that makes all the money at my JOB is the CEO at my company, while the pions do all the hard work………………now that the real pyramid that should be investigated………everyone is growmn, life is about CHOICES, if PREFER Burger King… fine, but dont be upset if I like McDonlads……….

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    3 November 2008

    So let me get this straight… You’re saying that most people have money problems?

    If that’s the case, how does MLM help them when 99% of people in MLM actually LOSE money????

    It sounds to me like MLM only contributes to their money problems.

  • Pedro Menard says:
    4 November 2008

    Wow, it’s been fun reading covered247’s comments.

    Particularly these ones here:

    “by the way, I bank with Wachovia and they offer me $25 for every customer that I refer (recruit) to open an account with them…….hmmmmmmmmm guess the banks are Pyramid schems also.”

    > Just a question: do you have to pay anything, or do you have to buy anything, to put your money in the bank?

    “I’ve also noticed that the only one that makes all the money at my JOB is the CEO at my company, while the pions do all the hard work”

    > Just a question: do you have to pay to work at your company? Or is it the other way round? They pay you for your work. If you know of any employee who has to pay to work for a tradicional business just let us know, allright? I guess news like that would make first page on number of well known newspapers.

    Best regards.

  • covered247 says:
    4 November 2008

    Its obvious that you are content with your job and your salary or you’re amongst the 2% of Americans that are financially “well off” or you have a plan B that will allow you to retire with a an income to supplement your SS income (i hope youre not going to be 65 anythime after 2043) because there will be no more ss by then, perhaps the government will replace it will BAIL OUT who knows !!!!!

    No I dont have to buy anything to open an account nor did I pay for my JOB, but guess what I’m 43 and I’m RETIRING from my JOB on March 25 2009, and I WONT be needing the services of the wonderful trap called CREDIT, because I’m on my way to FINANCIAL FREEDOM…..
    Freedom of choice ….you choose to work to make others wealthy, I choose to work to make myself wealthy and as many people that want to enjoy the ride (and yes I do have a huge team of people that are also getting wealthy)…..THANK GOD for Network marketing, its truly blessing me, and again ITS LEGAL…………………

  • Lessh says:
    4 November 2008

    I recently sent some cosmetics back to Mary Kay for repurchase. Like most women I was manipulated and told all the wonderful things about MK and how women love the product. I am not naive, but I really believed I would be successful. Truth is…the average women who works and has a family to support does’nt have the time or money for MK. I thought I was doing something good for my family, but turns out I lost money. MK scammed me out of over $300 in product return and even lied about not receiving my inventory form with the return. My sales director couldn’t even see beyond the dollars and it took me a short while to realize that she was only in it for the money making part of it. She tried to recruit one of friends who is a single parent and barely makes $30,000 a year. I am just regretful that I didn’t use the money to enjoy more vacation time with my family or buy us something special. I advise any women that is interested in working for MK to think long and hard and DONT DO IT IF YOU DONT HAVE THE TIME even though they will tell how easy it is to make time for it. As far as the women being Christian…money can turn a saint into a devil. I hope this will help someone who is trying to make a decision. If you dont have the money dont put yourself into debt to please your director. Remember she drives the pink Cadillac and probably does this full time. If you cant make the financial commitment without putting your family in jeopardy DONT DO IT.

  • Denise Renken says:
    6 November 2008

    I have been a die-hard Estee Lauder user for thirty years. Through those years, I have tried many other products. I always continue the Estee on one side of my face and try the “other” product on the opposite side. Although there are still a few of the Estee products that remain, in my opinion superior, the Time Wise line of Mary Kay was so close to the Estee that I have switched.
    I’m not sure where the source of such bitterness comes from, but I have my suspicions. Someone much wiser than I said, the harder you work, the luckier you get. I’m am truly tired of the blame for our failures and choices being blamed on others. Mary Kay offers an opportunity. It is not the right opportunity for all women. I run my own CPA business now. But years ago I sold Avon and Tupperware, which are structured the same as Mary Kay. Isn’t it wonderful that we have choices.

    In His service,
    Denise

  • Krista says:
    6 November 2008

    to Denise:
    While it may be true that the harder you work, the luckier you get, it isn’t always true for all people in all fields. Watch the movie “Pursuit of Happyness” sometime. The guy worked really hard trying to sell his products, but eventually he realized that nobody was going to buy that product, and his only choice was to cut his losses, sell for what he could get, and move on to something else. In that case, it was likely the product (or at least the cost of the product) that was to blame, not the man trying to sell.

    However, I also must say that I take after my mom in the fact that I distrust any kind of product that relies on a person’s willingness to exploit one’s family and friends in order to make a sale. My mom used to go to Tupperware parties, and is a current user of Avon, but she and I both hesitate when invited by a friend or church member to attend some “party” featuring a product for sale. This applies to anything such as Candle Lite or Pampered Chef or any other product that encourages people to take advantage of their friendships and other relationships to make money. People start feeling like the only reason you ever come around is because you hope to make a buck off of them. I would rather go into a store knowing that I am there to buy something that I know I want than go to a friend’s house with the dread that I am going to be pressured by my friend (or her party’s supervisor) to buy something I don’t want just because I am her friend.

    I mean, I’m all for enterprising and entrepreneurship, but these pyramid schemes and “party” sales gimmicks are seriously ill-conceived and infuriating. It’s great that you like the product and are willing to pay for it, but it is a failure of the business model to expect that it will continue to grow exponentially forever. Customers who like the product AND are willing AND able to afford it are not an unlimited resource, and the business model fails to recognize that eventually most people trying to sell the product WILL fail due to a lack of customers. As well, your attempt to blame those who are hurt and angry because they tried to succeed at a business that is faultily designed to fail most of its salespeople while promising success evidences your own inability to do the math and acknowledge that the very precepts of such a business model are harmful to the women who are deceived into believing that success is MERELY a matter of hard work. Whether Mary Kay herself intended such a result is not the real issue. What is at issue is the fact that the business model and practices being utilized have proven to be deceptive, that many women continue to be misinformed and misguided, and that many of those who bought into the idea have lost much more than they stood to gain. Perhaps you ought to think twice before you accuse others of spewing hatred and bitterness without considering that maybe they had real, good, and just reasons for their anger. Vengeance may be the Lord’s, but He leaves room for righteous anger, and I would venture to say that most of the women who have come away from MK feeling like they were used and discarded like worthless trash have an honest right to their anger and ought to be given the opportunity to voice their complaints in an open forum such as this.

  • H M Burns says:
    10 November 2008

    I am a MK consultant. I do not technically sale MK products. I never keep an inventory on hand. I purchase for myself at their 50% discount and I let all my friends purchase at 50% off. This way I get the financial benefits of using MK products and so do my friends.

  • Patricia Haynes says:
    11 November 2008

    The Mary Kay business opportunity is still one of the best opportunity for women. It’s not the business that fails, it’s the person. You see so often women race to the top much like Allison but what happens is they become too high and mighty in their “attitude” and when that happens they begin to lose many of their Directors. So changing the business isn’t the answer, it is change your “attitude”. In any business if you become successful but have a rotten attitude you are going to go down, however, if you keep a pure and humble heart there is nothing that you can not do or achieve. Those in your area will continue to work their own businesses when they have a leader whose heart is in the right place. You of all people should know that – it’s not the business, it’s you.

  • Janet says:
    11 November 2008

    All I can suggest Patricia, is to read on http://www.pinktruth.com. You sound like a like a brainwashed Kaybot.
    I’m goint to take a wild guess here and assume you’ve been in MK for maybe less than 5 yrs, and/or have not attained Red Jacket yet. If so, then maybe you haven’t gotten to DIQ yet?
    That’s when it gets ugly. No matter what my attitude, my 9-5 always gives me my steady paycheck and benefits. MK is a “business” and it fails people because its an MLM where the majority of women, no matter how kind, loyal, smart and faithful they are, lose their money and its the worse business to be in at the moment with the economy the way it is.

  • abcd says:
    13 November 2008

    why is recruiting such an issue when you can just sell, sell, and sell!! you’ll still get rich doing it anyway. mary kay offers a very big commission percentage on sales so why not take advantage of that. recruiting is just for those people who want to have a “career” in mary kay. I have a perfect example for that. here in our country, we have a beauty consultant who just sells the product and HE is rich and happy just by doing it. take note, HE! well, that’s how it is here. there are a lot of beauty consultants here who just sell because they don’t want the responsibilities of being a director. so why don’t you just do the same so that you won’t get into debt. :D

  • SecondThoughts says:
    13 November 2008

    Had a Director contact me giving me a speach of how much she loves her job and that she’s on her way to get her 3rd car. After reading this page, I have decided to definitly sleep on this idea for a while. She says she won’t bug me about it, but I guess we shall see. Thanks for having this website and giving me a little insite into all of this.

  • Indifferent to Pink says:
    13 November 2008

    http://pyramidschemealert.org/PSAMain/news/MythofIncomeReport.html

    I just read the article to which you referred a poster when she asked where you got your statistics. Basically, you have taken generic statistics and applied them to a specific company. You have not done any actual research into Mary Kay itself nor, as I stated in an earlier post are you giving the positive stastics. Why have you targeted Mary Kay when most “party” companies – i.e. Pampered Chef, Home Interiors, Tupperware, Tastefully Simple (just to name a few) – have the same recruiting philosophy? I am extremely puzzled by the basis of the negativity and extreme bashing of one company.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    13 November 2008

    I’ve done hundreds of hours of research into Mary Kay. And I’d be more than happy to analyze their numbers, but they don’t release them. The companies in this report were the only ones who release distributor numbers. But I have studied enough MLMs to know that Mary Kay is very similar to the companies that were included in the report. I write about Mary Kay because it happened to be the company I was interested in. But it is actually a very worthy target… a wolf in sheep’s clothing that proclaims they “enrich the lives of women”… all the while probably causing more debt and financial destruction than any other party plan targeted at women.

  • Indifferent to Pink says:
    13 November 2008

    So what you are basically saying is that Mary Kay is the only company who throws their sales pitch out to women? Don’t mostly women attend the other home parties? Don’t they get the typical “How you too can make money by becoming a consultant” speach at their parties? It just seems to me that you have personal vendetta against Mary Kay and are only interested in posting items that back up your view of the company. If you truely wanted to educate women, you would put BOTH sides of the story on your site.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    13 November 2008

    No, that’s not what I said at all. There is no need to present “both” sides of the story. I present the side that 99% of the women experience. Mary Kay and its representatives have their own sites to present what 1% experience.

  • Past consultant says:
    14 November 2008

    I ‘won’ a free makeover when I entered a drawing to win a free product back in early 2004. The lady that came and did my makeover did a great job, sold me on the product and then made an appointment with me (at my insistence) for a color makeover. Between appointments, I decided that I liked the product so much, maybe I would consider selling it, depending on the consultant price and rules. She obviously didn’t have to go to any trouble to recruit me, she was only 2 months in herself. BUT, when her director came to do my ‘orientation’ she worked on me to purchase a lot up front, which I sure didn’t have. My husband is a police officer and at the time I was a stay at home mom. I just wanted to be able to have a good product without paying a fortune for it. Besides, I had 2 sisters, my mother, mother in law, sisters in law, etc.. that would help me put the orders in. First thing she stressed was not to discount EVEN FAMILY or I wouldn’t make money…all about the almighty dollar. She was very pushy and made me instantly question my decision. I tried doing what the told me to do, the ‘warm chattering’, face boxes, went to 2 meetings, even earned my red jacket. I am NOT a salesman. I never will be. I can’t push people into buying from me. I can’t even talk to a complete stranger in target about a free makeover. It made me feel like some sort of psychotic stalker. I found myself being the impulsive buyer and buying more than I sold. So, I completely let it 2 years ago and sold every little bit I had left on eBay. (a big no no) They don’t allow you to sell on ebay. They threaten you with a lawsuit if they catch you, which is what happened with me. I had to sign a paper saying I wouldn’t do it anymore, which I did, but then I quit. I do really like the product. I always had skin problems and this has kept it clear and my makeup always looks great. But I will never actively sell again. A friend of mine and I order together every few months and extend the discount to many others. I work with just less than 20 women and they all get the discount and pitch in on shipping. She does the same. I guess you can say we are trying to take advantage of them now. I will never make the mistake again!

  • Lee D says:
    14 November 2008

    ITP, it’s easy for you to criticize others when there’s no onus on you. Why don’t you start your own website, talking about the things that YOU THINK should be talked about?

  • Blessed says:
    14 November 2008

    The awe inspiring spectacle of this polished flimflam scheme is the amazing camouflage it employs. The Mary Kay Cosmetics sham is truly elegant. Like an injurious social disease, the MK plight is spread from one women to another through social intercourse often without the host even realizing they are spreading something so harmful. It can spread like a grass fire in a dry field on a hot, windy day. Its fuel is the vulnerability which accompanies trust between women who share common characteristics such as motherhood, a devout Christian faith, and a default belief that we are all inherently good. This curse, the Mary Kay Cosmetics Cult, mercilessly exploits these vulnerabilities and damages relationships, financial portfolios & self esteem. This cult can’t easily harm it’s prey unless those victimized first let down their guard and become vulnerable. Like the true confidence scam it is, Mary Kay Cosmetics doesn’t punch you in the face and steel your purse, it convinces you to hand your money over, willingly. Many, many women have empaled themselves on the Mary Kay Cosmetics sword.

    The good news is people are learning. Thanks to the internet and sites like PinkTruth.com, people are learning. And another positive aspect of the information age is that folks are learning to recognize (and ignore) shameless shills who present blogs falsely purporting to be “fair and balanced” outlets for allegedly unbiased information about the Mary Kay Cosmetics “opportunity.” …tsk, tsk, tsk.

    So tell a friend, tell a stranger, tell everybody… avoid the May Kay Coemetics “opportunity” like the plague it is.

    Blessed

  • thinkpink says:
    16 November 2008

    WOW,

    You guys really know how to ruin a companies rputation, i really think people like you should get more facts instead of repeating the same thing over and over again99% of women loose money!!
    It doesnt matter what party plan co ur with MLM is still MLM. I worked for another partyplan company for 3 yrs and i ended up spending more than i was earning which was 22% commission, i am very much both sided here, i am a marykay consultant in australia and i actually left my previous mlm co for marykay cosmetics because i love the product. I am a stay at home mum who doent need to work but i enjoy meeting new people and getting out of the house. I dont push to recruit and i dont push to sell and i am doing extremly well with marykay doing it this way. I Tell EVERYONE that wants to join that they need to make themselves money so if you have a crappy month but u still made a hundred dollars and didnt spend any of it on marykay products and merchandise then thats fantastic. U can make a lot of money through MLM but u need to have the determination and be willing to do the hard work! I joined marykay because of the profit leavels i can earn a hell of a lot more money with marykay then any other party plan, so if its MLM ur wanting women to hear about then dont just bag out one company there is hundreds of other u can bag out too.
    Id also like to add this is a business and like any business you need to put 10% of your makings back into your business. I have owned a usiness before i can tell you know that i spent a lot more than that to keep it running and also in the first year of owning your business you DON NOT turn over a profit.

  • jordan says:
    10 December 2008

    you are a stupid mofo…mary kay is the best brand out there..you just have no life at all..loser

  • Denise says:
    10 December 2008

    You sound very bitter and want to blame Mary Kay for maybe not getting the training you should have sought out. This is a self owned business. We do get paid by the effort we put into it but we also have to build our skills in learning this business of selling this awesome product. I have certainly loved all the 11.5 years I have been WORKING my Mary Kay business and helping many women around the U.S. bring money into their families whether it was with a full store of products or order by order. I am currently earning my 5th car and have help many women earn theirs. If you have had a bad experience blame it on the experience not the Company. The opportunity that Mary Kay has to offer women is more than amazing. Too bad this wasn’t a place for you. Good luck to you. Denise

  • Denise says:
    10 December 2008

    And by the way… you keep talking about how Mary Kay is a MLM. It is not. It is a Direct Selling Company. It is not the same structure as a MLM. We do not have a up or down line and consultants, directors and Nationals make the same commission on the sale of their products. You should do a little more research.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    10 December 2008

    Denise – There most certainly is an upline and downline. The only way to “move up” in MK is to recruit people who are placed below you. Up, down, upline, downline. You are only a “director” because you recruited a downline of a certain size and conned them into ordering inventory.

    And your theory that everyone earns the same “commission” on the sale of the products is wrong. As a director, you get commission on your own orders, which means that you make more on the sale of a product than a consultant does.

    So thank you, but I’ve done plenty of research and Mary Kay is quite clearly an MLM.

    And blaming the company is the right thing to do when the fact remains that 99% of people involved in MLMs lose money. That’s a problem with the system of MLM.

  • Denise says:
    10 December 2008

    How far did you get in your business Tracy and how long were you in the company, if I might ask?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    11 December 2008

    It really doesn’t matter. I’ve been around long enough to know that no matter what my answer is to you, I will be a lazy loser who doesn’t know what I’m talking about. I could say I was in MK for 30 years, and you’d still tell me that I didn’t work hard enough, didn’t have enough patience, didn’t want it enough, didn’t believe in myself enough, didn’t do the right things, didn’t have the right attitude, or any of about 1,000 possible ways to condemn me.

  • Beth says:
    11 December 2008

    I am not a MK consultant, But have used it for the greater part of my life. I hear what you are saying. Is MK brainwashing people at the same rate that you are trying to, I sure hope not. I have took the time to read everything you had to say repeatidly!!!!!! I think you got your point across that 99% of women lose money with this company can we move on to another statement. I live by a very good rule “Believe none of what you hear or read, and half of what you see.” How much money are you planning to make from selling your books? I think that everyone is entitled to their own opinion. Say what you want, but I do not think you have everyones interest at heart. You have found your get rich quick scheme at the expense of other womens emotions. “Visit your site!” I think I will pass! It seems to me that alot of people this day and age are trying to make money at the expense of others, including you!

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    11 December 2008

    No, Beth, I’m not going to stop saying that 99% of women lose money in MLMs like Mary Kay because there are too many people who don’t know it or don’t understand it. Kaybots keep calling their “opportunity” the best ever, but with failure rates like that, there’s nothing good, better, or best about MK.

    You may not have noticed, but my book has nothing to do with MK or any MLM. People involved with MLMs don’t need to buy it, as it would have nothing of interest for them. I’m not making money by talking about MK, nor am I trying to sell books to anyone reading here about MK.

    So no… There is no get rich quick (or ever) scheme here related to MK or any other MLM.

  • Denise says:
    11 December 2008

    Hey Tracy,

    It’s me again. I’m sorry you’re so bitter and negative. I know you draw in many negative people. Negative people love nothing better than to complain and blame others for something. I find it funny that you won’t tell me how long you were in MK and what career level you attained. I had no intention of calling you a “lazy loser” or tell you that you didn’t work hard enough or didn’t want it bad enough. Sounds like you want to try to railroad ladies that might be considering this business without actually experienced or worked your own MK business. “Never take advice from someone your wouldn’t trade places with.” If you have done so much research then why are you leaving so much out? Where are the awards the company has earned over the years. And YES!, women DO make 6 figure incomes in MK. Large percentages of them. Have you ever look at the attrition rate in cooperate America? It’s safe to say that it’s equally as high as the attrition rate in Mary Kay a direct selling company. Just because someone choose to not work their MK business anymore and move on to something else in their life doesn’t mean they lost money unless your saying that about any other job they have had in their life.

    Well, I will continue to help as many women as I can to make whatever they want out of their Mary Kay business, earn career cars, make LOTS of money for themselves and families. Because it’s the right thing to do.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    11 December 2008

    Denise – Unfortunately, the FACTS do not support your statement that “large percentages” of women in Mary Kay make six figures. In fact, only around 100 women out of 700,000 MK reps in the United States make the six figures you mention. 100. That is one woman for every 7,000 involved. That’s an awfully low percentage.

    Here’s the proof of those numbers:
    http://www.pinktruth.com/index.php?option=com_myblog&show=Fun-With-Numbers-Mary-Kay-director-commissions-for-March-2008.html&Itemid=40

    The 99% failure rate experienced in Mary Kay is far higher than the “attrition rate” you mention for “cooperate America.” (That would actually be CORPORATE America.) In fact, 99% of people do not lose money in corporate America. They actually MAKE money each time they receive a paycheck. On the other hand, the 99% who fail in MK have LOST money.

    And don’t worry… I worked hard at Mary Kay. Thankfully, I realized how horrible the company and the opportunity were and I got out. I’m happy to help other women avoid MK all together, or get out and get at least some of their money back on the products they purchased.

  • Denise says:
    11 December 2008

    So what you’re trying to tell me, Tracy, is that besides me and the 8 other girlfriends that I hang around with that make six figures there are only 91 others in the U.S. that are making $100K. Come on…maybe you should not try to exaggerate those numbers so much. You and I know those numbers are much higher. Are you afraid if you tell people that more women are making $50-$100K per year and that Wall Street Journal reports that, you won’t be credible any longer?

    Is this your job all day now? This website?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    11 December 2008

    Liar liar, pants on fire! Denise… You forget that I have your full name and I can see that you’re not listed in Applause for your commission checks. That means you’re making less than $5,800 a month… and probably making SIGNIFICANTLY less than that. If you’re like the average G6 driver in Mary Kay, you’re making about $20,000 to $25,000 a year. Congratulations!

    As for your “Wall Street Journal quote” statement… I dare you to provide proof of that. You can’t, because such a thing was never printed in the WSJ. That is a complete lie.

    You can ignore the numbers in Applause if you want to, but I’m not going to. Now… Since you’ve proven yourself a liar already, if you would like to make further comments on the site, you’ll have to provide proof for any statement you make. If you don’t provide proof, your comments won’t be published. I’ll look forward to you redeeming yourself and your credibility with actual facts.

  • Pinkluv says:
    11 December 2008

    Hey, Tracy…just thought I’d let you know I still follow this blog when I want some entertainment. Still not driving free…still no ambition to. Still no credit card debt, still loving the perks MK is giving me. By the way…picked up another recruit this last month. I didn’t interview her…nor did my director. She actually got a hold of me because she heard how I am knocking my mortgage back with the extra money I make every month from looking good and smelling better. Still not interested in directorship.

    Keep up the good work; I need the entertainment, though I don’t expect to see this published.

  • Denise says:
    11 December 2008

    You don’t know anything about me Tracy. I am in qualifications for my 5th car, 2nd pink caddy by the way! You will not always see everyone’s name in the applause mag each month depending on the highest commission checks. So you can see that many, many women are making lots of money if you somehow get the applause in all seminars! As far as the WSJ quote goes, I will get you the article and post it here. It may take me a day or so but you will hear back from me.

    Shame on you.

    Happy Holidays

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    11 December 2008

    Yes Denise, shame on me for calling you out as the liar that you are. In order for you to be making the six figures you have falsely claimed, we would need to see your name in Applause consistently with commission checks of $10k a month. I’m willing to bet that you’ve never been in Applause, which means you are making under $5,800 per month (before expenses, by the way).

    If you’re like the average caddy driver, you make about $40k a year. If you’re like others, it’s more like $30k and you regularly pony up a copay for that car.

    But prove me wrong. Point me to your name and big commission check in applause. Show me multiple checks (not just that fantasy ‘high check’). Send me your 1099 with your social security number blacked out. I dare you to provide any proof of your claims. If you don’t then you are the liar I’ve called you out as.

  • Denise says:
    11 December 2008

    Wow Tracy, It’s clearly just a continued debate with you. I just realized something about you. I am apparently a little slow here since I just found this website by mistake. You have NEVER been a Mary Kay Beauty Consultant or Director, have you? You really have no true personal experience within this company. Who was your director or National? What Seminar were you in?

    Well I am off to deliver wonderful and amazing Mary Kay products to my customers and guess what…..do some recruiting!! Because I love this company and I love the opportunity that Mary Kay created for women. And yes it is a fantastic financially sound opportunity! Mary Kay is a debt free, privately owned company!

    See you later on.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    11 December 2008

    It’s only a debate because you keep making false claims that you can’t prove (because they’re false). I again invite you to provide proof of anything you’ve said. I’ve provided proof with Applause pages… Numbers don’t lie.

    Yes, I was in MK but my directors and nsd don’t matter. They were no more or less corrupt than the rest of the diredctors in MK.

    I just have the ability to analyze the facts, and when it comes down to it, MK is a horrible opportunity for almost everyone. Did I mention that the numbers don’t lie? And that you still haven’t provided any proof of your false claims?

  • Denise says:
    11 December 2008

    Wow! You continue to have your opinion of “facts” and I will continue to work and build my business helping others to succeed. Mary Kay is a company of heart and opportunity. When I had brain surgery 4 years ago they were by my side and my family’s side the whole time. I lost nothing! They prayed for me. People in the company I didn’t even know prayed, sent cards, flowers, helped me with my unit, knowing full well they would get nothing in return monetarily. It was just the right thing to do. You tell me what other company does that for just one person out of 1.5 million in the sales force if they were just out to take your money.

    I will not return to this negative site. I had such a great time out with my customers. It always reminds me what a great place Mary Kay is. You can continue to be the negative person you are. I pray you won’t hurt too many people on the way.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    11 December 2008

    Denise – I keep inviting you to provide some documentation in support of your claims, and you can’t provide even one piece. It is no surprise that you “won’t return” because you realize that your lies won’t go unchallenged by me, and because you have no proof for the lies you’ve told.

    It’s nice that your MK friends were there for you when you were sick. It doesn’t change the fact that you’ve lied about your income, the income of others, and the MK business in general.

  • Duped says:
    14 December 2008

    Denise’s chatter is so typical of the Mary Kay spiels that are taught. Kaybots get so used to spewing half-truths, exaggerated numbers, and flat out lies that they just don’t know how to react when they come into contact with someone with an analytical mind.

    Denise lives in a happy little world where she skips around in lala land professing her happiness and success. No problem there, but when her false rhetoric is directed to innocent women who actually believe her, she is definitely harming others.

    If it is true that she drives a MK caddy, then she has conned some and frontloaded many. You just can’t get there without doing that. In Mary Kay, you are taught to NOT give all the facts, because it is just “too overwhelming”. What a farce! The fact is, if you tell it like it is, most women would have nothing to do with this nasty company.

    And, like Denise, MKC trains you to drop a few rosy comments, move on to your next selling point, and never directly answer a legitimate question. Denise and so many who think they are successful in Mary Kay have become successful only in manipulating people and avoiding the truth.

  • Diedra says:
    15 December 2008

    I attended my first skin care class in October 1995. I have been at different levels within the company, but I respectfully disagree with your views. When I worked the business as a business, I made a comfortable profit. When I didn’t, money did not come in. If you work at any company on a salary, and don’t show up for work…you do not get paid. The same applies here. I love the product and I love the great attitude the company promotes. Of course, it is not for everyone. Neither is teaching, the medical field, sports, etc.

    If there are bad apples in the bunch, the “tree” should not be blamed. If consultant numbers are increasing, it seems more obvious that many more women than not like the company and what they are accomplishing.

  • Blessed says:
    15 December 2008

    It’s sad to see yet another testimony from someone else who has been maneuvered into becoming little more than a shameless shill. Maybe what I find so discomforting is we (my wife and I) use to be pretty good MK shills ourselves. The good news is you can step out of Mary Kay Cosmetics.

    When the time comes Denise, when the insanity can no longer be ignored, don’t beat yourself up. Good luck.

    Blessed

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    15 December 2008

    Diedra – I’ve talked to literally thousands of women who have been in Mary Kay, worked hard, and didn’t turn a profit. How would you explain that? How would you explain the fact that 40,000 women quit Mary Kay each month?

  • Julie A Bagwill, CEO says:
    25 December 2008

    Go get a life. Make it happen on your own. Bla, Bla, Bla. Class envy, that is all this is about.

  • Julie A Bagwill, CEO says:
    25 December 2008

    Make life happen!

  • Hilde says:
    4 January 2009

    All the energy put into debating on this subject would earn much more if used positively for ones own career instead of trying to discredit someone elses career. Sales companies, wether direct or multi level, need sales people. The talent to sell is thankfully not present in everyone. For those with a talent for sales and a trust in the product, Mary Kay Cosmetics and other MLM companies like Amway can do wonders. Others who are not sales oriented will never do well in sales. Not in direct sales nor in MLM. So those who quit MKC did so beause they have other talents and are not “destroyed” like one makes us believe. Live and let live is the correct comment used here earlier.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    4 January 2009

    Hi Hilde – Sadly, Mary Kay isn’t much of a “career,” when you consider that about 99% of women who get involved actually lose money. I’d agree that not everyone has sales skills, but is it really plausible to believe that 99% of the people who get involved just can’t sell? The evidence over the last 45 years has shown, unfortunately, that the MLM system is broken and participants in it are almost guaranteed to lose money.

  • madagoose says:
    5 January 2009

    My husband once opened a store and took out a small business loan to buy supplies…furnish…redecorate, etc. You know, all the things you do to start a business. When sales were down, he dipped into our savings to keep the store afloat. After 1 year, he closed the store because he was not making the profit he wanted to and called it “cutting losses”.I called it failure…did he truly do his best, nope…he did good things and wanted great results.Business people have to have a product to sell so inventory (be it MK or coffee beans) makes basic business sense.Why do people say,MK reps front load inventory that they can’t sell…what does that mean? Wouldn’t that be like opening a coffee shop but not unlocking the doors. Again, supplies are a basic/valid business expense but why can’t it be sold? If girl scouts can sell cookies why can’t an intelligent adult woman sell the supplies she invested in? She sells for WalMart w/o getting paid…you know how it goes, she calls her 4 best friends and tells them about the sale on sundresses…they all run over to buy 1 but the price is soo good they buy 2…they’re all soo happy they go to lunch together. 1 woman just sold 10 sundresses for WalMart but you want me to believe she can’t sell the supplies she invested in! Logically speaking, if 1 person in 45 years made $100 in MK then it can be done again. And if someone is looking to spend $100, might as well be with me.I have my Masters degree and Certification in Family Therapy…I’m not easily manipulated or soo desperate I forget how to make sound decisions.At my job, my efforts helps the CEO make a 300k salary and turn around and freeze my bonus.I have been a top producer in the real world and it also comes at a price, it’s my choice to pay it. I wake up at 6am to sit through 45 mins of traffic to get to an ofc that’s 20 mins away!! How can you say a regular job doesn’t cost…I pay for business suits…dry cleaning…gas…car maintenance…parking decal…CEU workshops/trainings…which are not tax deductible. Regular jobs cost more than any MK business ever could…I use to work 160hrs/month and after gas, food and child care expenses for 3 kids my profit was $200!!! Come on Tracey, I understand that you and thousand others had a terrible time with MK but as a Therapist, I have to tell all of you that failure is a personal thing.Scams don’t last 40+ years…I don’t believe your intentions are to save anyone…this and your other site are designed the way they are because misery loves company.You seem soo powerful on this site but I must ask, if MK Corp was soo flawed, why didn’t you structure your business after the late, great MK herself? Why didn’t you stay a Consultant/Director and lead a team the right way and be a positive example? Let me guess, you were just too disgusted w/the whole thing so you gave up. Couple more logic ???’s before I go…how could 1.6 million consultants around the world purchase from the company but not actually sell the items as stated? Wouldn’t “sales” have diminished by now? Where are people getting money from to keep buying products if they’re not selling something? This is just my logic speaking…I have no numbers. Again, logically speaking, if I do not write a check to Cadillac but have 1 of their cars in the garage, doesn’t that make it free to me? I know about the production #’s but the car itself cost me nothing…I was going to work anyway. I found the MK structure pretty simple, we may agree that women in their innate way of acting may have complicated the thing and of course there is always bad apples in the bunch. I do not find you to be logical on the most basic of levels.You seem angry that MK Corp. wants to make a profit. Didn’t the store you bought your PC from make money off u…what about that DSL company…you stated you make no money from pink truth but how much does it cost to run the site? Are you selling your agenda at a profit or a loss? Someone also mentioned saving $100/month…where is it safe to do that? AIG?…WAMU? $100 of MK product is guaranteed to give me $200…it’s my action that determines how fast that happens. You’ve been badly burned and I can only pity you and the others at this point. In reading some of the posts, I still fail to understand how MK destroys 1/2 mil women/yr. Let me tell you about destruction…I spoke to a woman today that thought she was going to retire from the company she gave 20yrs to only to be downsized…now at 54 she has to start all over…I plan to offer her the MK opportunity. FYI, I’ve been to a couple of MK events with my current consultant and I will be signing on at their meeting this Wed…I’ll keep you posted…I did find a couple of sites that offered genuine info…I double dare you to post them: http://www.dallasnews.com/s/dws/spe/2001/marykayash/extra.htm ; http://www.commonboundaries.com/profile_kirkman.html

  • shaaronie says:
    5 January 2009

    I so enjoyed reading the comments posted here. I have never sold MK but have bought there products once or twice, the last time, from a relative. I have never used them. My relative recently moved up in the organization and seemed really gung-ho about it. Now I am wondering if she is truly suceeding or is just drinking the “Pink Kool-aide”. Thanks for an entertaining evening.

  • Want to get out says:
    12 January 2009

    So I previously bought the dumb starter kit! And I feel so stupid. I believed the lies for like 30 minutes and next thing I know I’m having a dessert that the annoying director bought me to get me to sign up or whatever. Then we met again so she can tell me that I needed to be “an active” member so that the girl that recruited me could go on target for being a director or something. So I decided to hear my options and oh my gosh was I shocked when she tried to brainwash me about needing to invest 3,600 and telling me how oh donkin donuts didnt start their business without having to invest a lot, etc. It was rediclous that she even told me to get a credit card loan and all this stuff I was like ummmmmm yeah no thanks. I tried to escape from her fast and decided I would return the dumb box. The next day she calls me and I don’t answer so she leaves a message and so on. This happend for like a month until I picked up blah. She wanted to ask me for my adress because they made a mistake and sent the box to the wrong person! I tried to explain and though I thought I didnt need to worry about the box anymore, I got it sent to me again! It took me like 20 buks to send it back and I’m not wasting any more money on doing that again when the box cost 100..doesn’t make sense. Now the MK box is sitting in my room and I don’t know what to do with it. This lady still calls me everyday when I don’t pick up and sends me text messages and e-mails like crazy! I get like 8 a day and im about go crazy because she just doesn’t get it. I’m ignoring her! Ugh anyways I also heard from the girl that recruited me (kind of my friend when we don’t involve MK) that this director doesn’t even have a car anymore and they’re in debt and I don’t know what else but yet she still believes she’s going to be succesful! What a nightmare. Sorry for the slopiness of this post, I’m on my iPod right now and its quite hard to write! Have a good day everyone.

  • stefani says:
    12 January 2009

    There is a Boca Raton vetetinarian who allowed his wife to conduct shop to earn meeting at his office and she was trying to solicit staff and clients. People usually trust their veerinarian with their beloved pet and this was a perfect setting. She has been invloved with other MMM scams with her husband. She has shown her paychecks only on a computer screen to try to get people invo0lved. She claims “you can get in now and make easy money.” Bernie Madoff’s money was easy money too. Sometimes the scammers hide behide a trusting background. BOCA WOMEN BEWARE!!!

  • JMJ says:
    14 January 2009

    I still can’t help but ask, if you didn’t have the money for the inventory, why did you buy it? I hear this complaint all the time “I was pressured into making a (insert dollar amount here) purchase because I was told I needed inventory”. Well, if you didn’t have that amount, why did you purchase it?

    I think people are looking for excuses for why they lost money, instead of accepting that maybe they got in over their head. No one wants to be accountable for their actions anymore it seems, so we see sites like this that try to blame MK, instead of placing blame on themselves. My director was very matter-of-fact with me, and never once pressured me to make any purchase I could not afford. I made my $600 purchase because I had the money to do so, I didn’t go max out a credit card or ask for a loan. I am holding skin care classes and making my money back and then some. Its all about knowing your limits. If you bought $1200.00 in inventory and then don’t go out every day looking for people to have classes for, then yeah your not going to sell that inventory. Also, if you decide this isn’t for you, you can always return the product and get 90% of your money back.

    I think people get the wrong idea about owning your business. Its a lot of work, and you don’t necessarily make a profit the first day out. Ask any small business owner and they will tell you that for months they were probably taking the money they earned and putting it right back into their business until they were making enough profit to draw a salary from. Its not cocktails on the beach one month in. Being your own boss isn’t all the glam you see on TV.

    Also, you probably should had done a little reading before you decided to jump into a business. My friend asked if I wanted to join and for two weeks I researched it, both the good and the bad. I needed to know what the draw was, and what were the reasons people didn’t succeed. You should always do your homework before doing anything major in life.

    I think all this finger-pointing should be turned in on the people who are doing the pointing. Take responsibility for your actions and stop trying to find a scape-goat for your mistakes. MK is what you make it and if it wasn’t for you then fine, but stop trying to blame the company because you didn’t succeed.

  • David Cramer says:
    14 January 2009

    Obviously you tried and couldn’t cut it with the company. Its one of the finest companies for women in the world. Not sure where you got the notion they just sell lipstick…… Oh, by the way, what color is YOUR company car?

  • Somuchbitterness says:
    15 January 2009

    There are REAL problems and more important issues going on in the world. Fight for a better cause than trying to “expose” MK as financiallly ruining women. We have children being abused, women being battered by their spouses, homeless families, peopled battling cancer, aids and all sorts of afflictions – and you spend your time trying to expose a cosmetic company for being a thief? Honestly! Get a life!

  • Danae says:
    15 January 2009

    A good consultant is one that works with you. If they are scheming and telling you to buy so much at a time it’s for their own personal gain. It’s your buisness and you run it the way you want. They are supposed to help you through it and teach you how to become a good consultant. Just because one woman scammed you doesn’t mean that the company is evil or that all the women that work for it are either. I am sorry that it happened to you, but my knowledge of Mary Kay is nothing but good.

  • Duped says:
    16 January 2009

    I’m going to try to let you down easy, folks. Being a consultant, director, etc. with Mary Kay is a “pretend” business. You are not in business for yourself. You may not advertise however you want, you may not set up a retail shop or sell at fairs, etc., and if you decide to quit or retire, you can not sell your “business”. You’ve been duped, as I was.

    To “Want To Get Out”: if your director contacts you again, tell/email her saying that you are quitting, you want her to stop contacting you, and if she continues, you will file a harassment/stalking report on her with the police. Call MKC, tell them about the starter kit shipments, and your returns, and that your director keeps getting new kits sent to you, and won’t take no for an answer. Tell them you do not want this newest starter kit, and you are sending it back. If it is unopened, you should be able to have UPS return it for free, if you tell them it was a mistake.

  • itsjulie4u says:
    23 January 2009

    WOW – thanks to all for sharing their position. Who knew Mary Kay Cosmetics sparked such passion in these women! All I wanted is some pink lipstick, now I have some ponderous information. :)

  • Wendy says:
    25 January 2009

    Mary Kay Inc. = In business for over 45 years, projected to make 5 billion in the next 5 years LIE GROWING
    Mary Kay = More women millionaire’s than any other company LIE
    Fortune Magazine = Mary Kay ranked as top 100 companies in the USLIE
    Mary Kay Marketing = studied at Harvard Law LIE
    2004 Mary Kay = One of the 25 Most Influential Business Leaders of the Last 25 Years by PBS and the Wharton School of Business
    2003 Greatest Female Entrepreneur in American History by Baylor University
    **2006 More than $4.9 million was donated to the causes of funding research for cancers affecting women and preventing domestic violence against women **

    What a horrible company, your right Tracy. I’ll listen to the respected leaders and universities in the country over you any day.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    25 January 2009

    Hi Wendy – I took the liberty of updating your comments to indicate which statements were lies. And I’ll have to agree with the people who call Mary Kay Ash a great entrepreneur… She came up with an ingenious plan to make zillions of dollars off women.

  • JoeTaxpayer says:
    25 January 2009

    I happened to see this post, and thought to offer the Forbes link:
    http://www.forbes.com/lists/2008/21/privates08_Mary-Kay_9ETL.html

    It’s the number 182 ‘private’ company as of 11/08. As a private company, it’s not so easy to find balance sheet info, so I can’t comment on profit, etc. As far as women millionaires, I’d bet Microsoft is a candidate for that award, though I don’t know how to track reliable data to support my hypothesis.

  • Anna says:
    27 January 2009

    I think that the fact that GROWN A_ _ woman are sitting around,arguing back and forth about Mary Kay and tha PinkTruth website is RIDICULOUS…..!!! OH MY GOSH….im pretty sure Mary kay wouldn’t be very hapy looking at some of the comments that the women who WORK FOR HER. If you forgot, you are always gonna represent Mary Kay until you stop wearing the name tag…!! So i would like to thank everyone that made these wonderful comments for sticking up for their side of the story…but please…..GET A LIFE!!!!

  • Erin Flanary says:
    27 January 2009

    Wow, I read the original message that started this blog and went through some of the responses. I’ll break it down super simple. RESPONSIBILITY FOR AN ADULT DECISION.
    No one will EVER get something for nothing and someone who thinks or dreams of that happening will still bomb if they got that type of chance anyway.
    As with Mary Kay and any self employed situation, you must be disciplined, work harder than your W2, punch the clock and take your paycheck home every 2 weeks job. WHY? because if you do MORE you will receive more and not just monetary. If the all mighty dollar is in the front of your mind and not to actually help your fellow woman/man, you’re doomed. Doomed before you start out of 2 strong deadly sins of greed and gluttony.
    Let’s be big girls, i.e. adults and make the decisions therein and quit blaming the world (or Mary Kay) for our drama, laziness, and NEGATIVE aura exuding.

  • Business Mind says:
    28 January 2009

    Every experience that we have in life is for growth. But every experience is according to our perception. Some people are not cut out to be sales people but in any case, you can do anything with enough determination and drive.
    If you failed it doesn’t mean that the company is all bad. If you lost money MK didn’t hold a gun to your head and make you spend that money on their behalf. We have to own up to own decisions and be willing to face the consequences of our actions without blaming others. So, basically you are completely putting your self on blast because I see you as a person who avoids responsibility. A person who wants to place blame on something or anybody else for a business decision gone bad.
    Stop winning and tell the truth to yourself. Then and only then can you pick yourself up and go on with your life the way Mk has since you left the company as a rep.

  • Blessed says:
    29 January 2009

    Dear Business Mind,

    There was a time when three-card-monte games could be found at nearly every other street corner in mid-town Manhattan. They were easy to find. At the center of these huddles of 5 to 10 people (sometimes 10 to 20) was a cardboard box on top of which were cards being moved around. All a player had to do to win was pick out the queen. Those new to the game (marks) could easily see it was a sure way to win. The crowds were comprised of marks and shills. Depending on how many marks they could maneuver into becoming victims, a three-card-monte operator and his team of shills could make a nice piece of change in a few hours. If you don’t know what three-card-monte is, see here:

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-163435387173807719

    Imagine for a moment the spiel given by the three-card-monte shysters to the police during an investigation of the many complaints from tourists victimized in the “game.” Can you hear them? Sounds a bit like what you said in your post. “Hey, nobody held a gun to the heads of these people. We just provided them with the opportunity to play.”

    Ya see, by design, the shysters & shills win in three-card-monte. The most reliable way to avoid loss of money in this game is to never play. It is a game of deception which depends upon skillful maneuvering and manipulation of those who get involved.

    But for a deck of cards, a cardboard box and a few other details, three-card-monte and Mary Kay Cosmetics are largely the same game. By design, the vast majority of folks who step into the Mary Kay “opportunity” ultimately exit less whole. The Mary Kay Cosmetics Corporation is peddling a polished confidence scam. And they’re masterful at manipulating unsuspecting women as marks.

    I recommend all avoid three-card-monte and Mary Kay Cosmetics.

    Blessed

  • Erin Flanary says:
    29 January 2009

    Bravo “Business Mind”, I completely concur.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    29 January 2009

    I will never stop winning. I am a winner, dammit.

  • Really Tracy ? says:
    30 January 2009

    Tracy, i do not have a dog in the fight here. But you seem to have some statements on your own here that you would need to back up, just as you are asking others to do. The most glaring is your statement above: “99% of the women in MK do not make any money”.

    Can you substantiate this comment.? I hope you can because if not, I may have to severely discount the rest of your commentary throughout your site. If you are going to hold the “strikethrough button” and tag on such a strong word as LIE. You should be held even more accountable than the posters here.

    This probably will not make the board, but at least you know.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    30 January 2009

    Please feel free to scroll up and read the comments, where I link to the data which supports the 99% figure.

  • preciousangel says:
    4 February 2009

    I have been with Mary Kay since April 2008… All the people in my unit are great, and not one of them told me I had to buy products to be successful…Yes you can start your business off right by buying products within the first month and receiving free!!!!! Products!!!!! Depending on your order!!!!… I didn’t even talk advantage in that because I took my business a little slow at first I wish I did buy products at first, so I could have taken advantage in the free products… Mary Kay is all about empowering women…. Everyone begins at the same level and promotes themselves based on their own performance and leadership… It just like any business we buy our products at a 50% discount on wholesale purchases, Means purchase for a $1 and Sell for $2….. Mary Kay Rewards you for your achievements’…. Unlike all these other companies who are laying people off and cutting costs… our company is making the product and packaging better and better each Quarter… We stay up to date with fashion trends…. What is better than, being able to work your business around you and your schedule, being able to write off all your expenses everything from your phone, to your office supplies, to your miles and gas on your car… You name it and it’s probably a tax write off… Oh yeah even better, what home business tells you if you don’t feel it works for you, you can sell your products back and they give you 90% of your money back…wow… That’s a first… I tried all these at home businesses and Mary Kay is by far the best thing I could have ever done….. I’m 23 and Mary Kay will grow with me and my business will be amazing in a few years… I don’t just do Mary Kay I’m a Hair Dresser and a full time mom…. Don’t think you’re going to start a business and you’re going to be rich… The more you put into your business, the more meetings you attend, and the more you know about your product, the better you can sell… You have to Love the Product to sell it… if you don’t like it then Mary Kay isn’t for you… But don’t just bad mouth this wonderful company….The highest paid National Sale director Get’s paid over 1 MILLION DOLLARS A YEAR… Wow… What about if you become a national sale director and you turn 62 years old, The Company makes you retire and takes the best 3 years out of the last 5 years in sales and pays you that every year for 15 years…wow …again …that is one retirement plan… I’d have to say… Mary Kay’s mission was to make woman successful then let them enjoy life…. Her mission was to reward you for your achievements’ and she sure did… NEED I SAY MORE…..

  • Blessed says:
    5 February 2009

    Preciousangel,

    Suggesting it is impossible for any Mary Kay Cosmetics IBC to earn a net profit from participation in the “opportunity” is, arguably, damaging to the presenter’s credibility. Similarly, an argument purporting all who experience parachute failure while skydiving will die, is also damaging to ones credibility. Although both activities will produce largely predicable outcomes, there are exceptions. There are actually some folks who survive parachute failure while skydiving (yea, it’s true!) and there are some who actually earn something in the Mary Kay MLM. Regardless of the exceptions, though, I believe a recommendation to avoid the MK MLM or jumping out of an airplane with a faulty parachute is damn good advice any day of the week.

    Who can make accurate character judgements based on blog entries? It’s kind of tough to do. Nonetheless, let me throw the dice and take a guess. From your post you sound as though you are most likely a person who enjoys the benefit of a personal faith. My guess is you enjoy interaction with people (as opposed to being alone). I’d also guess you have no problem identifying the attributes of folks and can, most often, easily establish a rapport with other women. Among your other attributes is, I bet, an innate ability to appreciate the positives you’re surrounded with each day. You sound like the kind of person with whom most would enjoy spending time. You sound like my wife. If I were targeting someone to recruit as a Mary Kay Cosmetics IBC, I’d try to recruit you.

    Although some have, I’ve never had an original complaint regarding any Mary Kay Cosmetics product. I believe they cost too much but I’m not in a position to criticize or endorse them as to quality. By contrast, with regard to the way the Mary Kay Cosmetics MLM experience can severely damage marital relationships and financial portfolios, I’m an expert. I don’t believe it’s the creams, the eye shadows, or the lipsticks. It’s just simply the nature of the beast; it’s an MLM.

    Thanks to the internet, you have the benefit of exposure to the experiences of others and can, hopefully, avoid some of the pitfalls so many of us have experienced through our association with Mary Kay Cosmetics. On this level I wholeheartedly wish you well as only you can decide what is right for you.

    There’s another perspective beyond any injury you personally may suffer from your association with this MLM. Let’s assume you will be able to consistently avoid any pressure to manipulate, mislead or outright lie to recruiting targets. Even so, you are a component of an organization which, by design, churns through women like so much cannon fodder. Your participation in the MLM as an IBC, regardless of your own behavior or intentions, helps strengthen the Mary Kay Cosmetics machine which has injured so many. Sound radical? I bet it does, for now. I hope you’ll consider the thought.

    I wish you well, whatever course you take. I hope you’ll continue to ponder whether your participation in this MLM is right for you.

    Blessed

  • Teddi says:
    7 February 2009

    i’m sorry to hear your negativity about Mary Kay Cosmetics (or any other business). After reading a few of your concerns, i detect a some anger or dissapointment from you.

    i used to sell Mary Kay cosmetics many years ago (1980s). i only got into the business because i truly liked the product. i am not a good (phoney?) “sales person,” so i have to believe in, and be fulfilled by the product i am advertising in order to sell it to others. My strict standards would not allow me to do otherwise.

    i also i did quite well, financially, in the business. unfortunately, i had to stop selling because i also had a full-time job, which offered medical benefits. thus i chose to keep my full time job and spend more time with my daughter.

    now that i am retired, i plan to go back into the business. if you haven’t tried the product, you should – it does make a difference in ones’ complexion. it makes me feel good – and so do the earnings.

    sincerely.
    teddi

  • Theresa says:
    19 February 2009

    Tracy,
    In any business venture, there is a start up cost. I’ve only been a Mary Kay consultant for 5 weeks, and already I am loving it and selling the product from my inventory. Also, when I placed my inventory order, my Director was able to choose which items I received for my money. She knows what sells and did a fantastic job at choosing just the right products for me to have for the people I am selling to. I’ve actually had to place an extra order to keep up with sales. Yes, I still have some inventory that hasn’t moved yet, but it’s only been a few weeks. I guess having a gread Director is a huge part of being a successful consultant.

    There are pushy people in any business, but all shouldn’t be judged by a few. I was not pressured in to joining or buying more inventory than I was willing or able to. I had many choices … I’m an adult and made the decision I was comfortable with. Women have to be smart and use their head when making ANY decisions about money and going into business.

    Anyone who wants to start a business and is thinking about Mary Kay should talk with someone they know in Mary Kay and ALSO talk with that person’s Director to make sure she is getting into a group of Mary Kay consultants who will help her every step of the way.

    If someone is being successful and making money, I think it’s unfair to call them, or their husbands, “Brainwashed”. You have obviously either had a bad experience, which is unfortunate, or you are someone who is just very against women having the opportunity to “make it or break it”. I love having the freedom to make decisions about my life and my family. Other than being in Mary Kay for a short time, I have been self employed successfully for more than 17 years now. I’m a smart, successful business woman and for me, Mary Kay is the right decision. Mary Kay has incredible products, but you can’t sit home and expect customers to come to you. You will get out of it what you put into it. Just as any other business, you have to put a lot of time and effort into it before you get to the point where you can sit back and relax a little. Everyone should know that before they make the decision to go into business.

    Blessings,
    Theresa

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    19 February 2009

    Theresa – I’d encourage you to take a look at some of the comments on this thread and on Pink Truth. No one is suggesting a business shouldn’t have a start-up cost. And no one is suggesting that it’s just “a few” people in MK that are doing the wrong thing. Corruption of the sales directors is so rampant, that the entire organization is tainted. This is not about any bad experience I may or may not have had. It’s about helping women to not lose thousands of dollars via MK, like the millions of women who have lost before them. It’s all about educating women on the truth about Mary Kay.

  • Lina says:
    19 February 2009

    I can see how both sides make very good sense. I can see how lives can and have been ruined and others have had successes. Ultimatetly there is not wrong or right.

    It is all based on ones own reseach and decisions.

    My grandmother was brought to the US to work for a family. She did everthing she could to sustain her family of 3 and later they would be 6. It was not until she found an MLM company that she found success.
    The funny thing when talking to this lovely lady who still does not speak English…is that she never bought inventory. She had shows, took orders and delivered product. She tells me even today that she never understoond the recruiting aspect of the business and so she never recruited a single soul. From the mid ’70’s to the 90’s she sold her product and that is all she did..This was her only job and she earned prizes but more importantly she said she made a living that allowed her to buy not 1 but 2 homes and a new car every 5-6 years. She is happily retired ..and as for her husband he dwindled his money drinking …so she did all. For this reason I have chosen MK and have sold other items like toys and even food but MK is my favorite…simply b/c I love make up.

    Again you all have valid points..but do what is best for you…and as for inventory…I started with the minimum and slowly invested to have a one of everything on my shelf…but I am not in debt nor straining my relationship…i have made the best choices for me with out rushing into anything and I say to all to do the same.

  • Diane Villarreal says:
    22 February 2009

    You really should have researched a bit more before you wrote and published this article.

    Lie 1: Mary Kay is NOT a pyramid marketing plan. As a consultant I purchase my products from Mary Kay NOT my director. This is a multilevel marketing plan!!! You need to read up on the difference in both. As a matter of fact, you can’t graduate from Harvard University with your MBA WITHOUT studying the MK marketing plan. The reason for this is because it is SO GREAT!

    Lie 2: You CAN make considerably more money in MK than if you were to work for someone else. I DECIDE WHAT I WANT TO MAKE EACH WEEK! If you work for someone else you are paid what they feel the job is worth! NOT WHAT YOU ARE WORTH. I worked 5 hours 2 weeks ago and brought in 1006.00. This week I worked 2 hours and brought in $422.00. There again, I made the choice as to how many hours I was willing to put into my business! The other benefits are substantial. I have had the honor of driving a career car, prizes from MK, recognition at national events, etc. This is because I CHOOSE to actually work the business. This business is ALL ABOUT THE CHOICES WE MAKE EACH AND EVERY DAY! Instead of whining about how Mary Kay is a scam, look at the facts that in Mary Kay we have more making over 100,000 per year than in ANY other business. We have more career cars on the road than the US government has on the road. MK MUST is doing something right. If a woman simply purchases an inventory then does not promote the product line, then sure, she is NOT going to make money. You have a choice. If your choice is to make money and you are willing to be trained, you WILL MAKE MONEY!

    Lie 3: MK is the number 1 selling brand of cosmetics in the USA and #2 in the world. The only reason we are #2 in the world is because there are a lot of people in different countries that want to be whiter and use a bleaching agent for their skin.

    Lie 4: If you are willing to be trained and will work with your sponsor or Director, you can consistently flip the product that you purchase from the company.

    Lie 5: This is a legitimate business, the IRS says it is and we know it is. If you work this as a business and NOT a hobby, it will pay like a business.

    Lie 6: We are recession proof! While companies are laying off the masses, MK just keeps getting stronger. Those of us that are actually working the business are NOT seeing the recession like those who work for someone else, and are terrified of losing their jobs every day!

    Lie 7: Product quality is EXCEPTIONAL! There is NO comparison with drug store brands. You obviously have NOT even tried this product. I suggest that you do and then write an article. Call your local director and have her come over and do a “facial” on you. MK products are tested over 300,000 times BEFORE they EVER hit the market. It is all based on scientific fact and not because it “sounds” good. When my ladies put this on their faces they feel an instant improvement. As time goes on, the improvement gets better and better. My own skin is a prime example of this.

    Lie 8: Women love to “deal” with a MK consultant. Who else is going to keep women in fashion, help them with their skin care needs with compassion, privacy and cleanliness? If you are sucker enough to go to a makeup counter to “experience” makeup that way, be prepared to come home with a disease! My customers know that they can pick up a phone and have the product, DELIVERED TO THEM AT THEIR HOME! I challenge anyone to call Este Lauder and ask them to bring their overpriced products to their house.

    By the way, I flipped my initial investment within 2 months. This was over $3600 in inventory.

  • ArroganceRules says:
    22 February 2009

    You guys don’t “get it.” Tracey is an accountant… not an entrepreneur… not a sales person.

    While I certainly agree that some MLM’s are not as good as others… the main mistake most people make is this.

    ALL MLM’s are SALES JOBS.

    If you don’t like sales, if it scares you to pick up the phone and call people, if you can’t take rejection, if are are not self motivated and self disciplined …you need to get a j.o.b job.

    It is an 80/20 world out there. Meaning 20% of people produce 80% of whatever. Some people are queen bees, some are worker bees. Some people are leaders, some are followers. 49% of people have a below average IQ.

    The mistake most people make is not being honest with themselves about their own limitations. I’ve met a lot of people over the years that have done very well with MLM’s. Many that have not. In almost every case it had more to do with the person.. than with the business. If you have been fired from a lot of jobs, have multiple divorces, or been in one MLM after the other… what IS the common denominator here?

    MLM is a perfectly VALID business model. It is simply replacing traditional advertising and distribution models with a “word of mouth,” hands-on selling system.

    I used to work in mainstream advertising. Most of the companies I sold radio and tv ads to spent 10% of their budget on marketing. They paid their sales people either a salary, or commission, or both. They had distributors, and retailers. All these people made money.

    In MLM it is the same, just moved around. Instead of national ad campaigns, you have independent reps. Instead of middle-men and distributors, you have independent reps. Instead of middle management and sales managers, you have independent reps.

    Bottom line though… if you have have never been in sales, never been successful in sales, or don’t like sales… you will probably NOT be successful in an MLM business. It is really up to the individual… but you have to be honest with yourself before you get into it. Will you put in the time it takes. Will you give up after a couple of “nos?” Are you sure the product(s) is good? Has the company been around a while? Is there an ongoing monetary investment to be in the business? Is the emphasis more on recruiting then on selling? You do have to be discriminating in what you choose but there ARE good MLM and direct sales companies out there.

    Jim Cramer on Mad Money said “direct sales” is the way to go for the next few years. Funny that a guy that talks about investing in the stock market is telling people to get into direct sales. But with the depression coming, and more and more people losing their jobs, creating multiple streams of income does afford the financial stability that a job does not AND that the stock market will not.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    22 February 2009

    LOL – Who knew that owning my own business and being the only sales person for it for 9 years doesn’t qualify me as an entrepreneur or a sales person.

  • Blessed says:
    22 February 2009

    Diane Villarreal said:

    “As a matter of fact, you can’t graduate from Harvard University with your MBA WITHOUT studying the MK marketing plan. The reason for this is because it is SO GREAT!”

    Really? Gee, I never realized this particular piece of Mary Kay Corporation BS was actually true. ;-)

    This is just simply great stuff, not only the above quote but the entire post.

    Diane,

    Your post is a fine illustration of the old adage which says, during a debate sometimes it’s best to shut-up and allow the other side to continue speaking.

    Please post some more, much more.

    Blessed

  • Teresa says:
    25 February 2009

    You are seriously uneducated. If you believe everything you said about Mary Kay, then you failed at it because of your attitude, lack of effort and lack of faith in God. You cannot blame others for what you failed to do.

  • Ben says:
    5 March 2009

    Tracy Coenen…

    I’m not a IBC with MK, I will never be one. Not because the company is a scam, but because I have no desire to sell makeup. But I do find it really hard the believe that 99% of all women lose money when selling MK. If this was the case then why are there still so many people signing up for it? You constantly are asking people to provide proof about their income and proof that MK isn’t a scam…I ask you to show proof that it is. I have seen you post a few links the that PinkTruth website…but hey, look, I can create a website that says what ever I want on it too. Why don’t you show us something that is credible? Like CNN or FoxNews, or a big time newspaper…I will more than likely believe it if CNN says don’t buy into MK because 99% of women loose money.

    A few posts up you called someone out and said to provide an article in the Wall Street Journal, why don’t you show us some proof that give credit in all these bogus articles on PinkTruth, and I call them Bogus because as far as I know there is no truth backing them.

    And why do you demand that people provide proof that backs what they are saying, when you yourself will not answer the questions when your called out. You say that you were a IBC, but wont say for how long, among other things. Who is to say that you only did it for 1 year and then bailed on it because you didn’t get rich quick? With any business you have to invest time. I don’t care what your doing or selling, but the longer you do it the more money your going to make at it, its as simple as that.

    And here you go, here are some credible sources that tell every one about how good MK is doing as a company. And they are all recent too. So tell me, how are 99% of all women losing money if the company is doing so good? In fact I looked through 5 pages of articles on news.google.com, keyword Mary Kay, and I didn’t see a single article about people losing money. And you would think in this day and age people don’t just have an extra 5000$ sitting around to invest in inventory. So how can you lose it if you dont spend it?

    Mary Kay seizing opportunity – http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/29460788/

    Mary Kay Inc. Offers Women Compelling Solution to Economic Downturn Through Direct Selling – http://www.businesswire.com/portal/site/google/?ndmViewId=news_view&newsId=20090303005427&newsLang=en

    Make-up sales up when women get down?- http://www.azcentral.com/12news/news/articles/2009/02/23/20090223lipstickeconomy02232009-CR.html

    So now I ask you….Show me proof that 99% of all women are losing money like you claim. And don’t send me some BS off of the PinkTruth website, because as far as I’m concerned that is all bogus made up junk.

    BTW…are you the author of this blog?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 March 2009

    Ben – Everything you’re asking for has already been provided on this page. Scroll up and start reading.

  • PersonalUse says:
    6 March 2009

    First of all, to start your own business, you have to educate yourself. Is it my fault you jumped into a business without knowing what you’re doing? No! I originally started my business with NO INVENTORY. My recruiter brought her own products to my debut to help me get started. Do some people manipulate? Yes, but that comes with all business. So before you tell women to stop buying into Mary Kay, maybe you should actually ask some of them why they left the business. In personal businesses like this, you get back what you put in. They have a good business plan and and proven success. I didn’t quit, but had to sign a new consultant agreement-so does that make me a quitter or a brainwashed newbie? LOTS of consultants sign up to get the discount on personal items. That is the business I run now. I am a personal use consultant and have only a handful of customers that seek the product through me because I don’t promote it as my business. I save more by buying Mary Kay products and have tried other brands since starting my Mary Kay business, and they don’t even compare in quality. Mary Kay skin care and cosmetics is by far superior quality. And especially in this retail market, customers like to feel valued and important which is something this company can offer their customers. I challenge you to find any other company that can be called all hours of the day or night and hand deliver your order the following day with a smile on her face and a sincere thank you! Each consultant has some freedom to run her business the way she chooses, and many don’t abide by their consultant agreement, so hate on that consultant, not the company. And if you have a problem with home businesses in general, you need to bring up all the other home businesses, and not just 1. Mary Kay is a competitor in the skin care and cosmetics industry through independent consultants. So I think you should look at who you’re really mad at.

  • Ben says:
    6 March 2009

    Tracy

    I read 90% of all the comments…and I made sure to read ALL of yours. None of the questions that I asked were answered. But thanks for avoiding my questions. Until proved otherwise I think that its safe to assume that you just simply dont have the answers to the questions that I asked. But I guess that its ok for you to call people out and put them on the spot and demand that they answer your questions or you will stop posting their replys. Im my opinion your a joke. And if you really were a IBC you should have put as much passion in it as you do this crappy site and the pinktruth, you might have been sucessful.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    6 March 2009

    Ben – I’m sorry that you weren’t successful in reading this page. I’m not going to retype the answers to your questions simply because you haven’t been able to find them on this page. They’re here. I’m not typing them again. Good luck!

  • p says:
    13 March 2009

    I would think that most businesses – if not all – are MLMs. Every manufacturer needs to buy as well as sell. Every salesperson needs to also buy – in order to sell. Whether thru in-home sales, catalog, internet or brick-and-mortar, all items &/or opportunities need to be supplied to be purchased. They need to be advertised. Competition for the public dollar is fierce. Companies will use whatever means they can to promote their product or opportunity. It is up to the individual to do their own research & use their common sense before “buying” the “product”…whether it be a job, a mortgage, a consumable product, etc. Not all products or opportunities are for everyone but we are free in this country to CHOOSE. With that freedom comes responsibility to be accountable for our choices. If your choice turns out bad for you then admit it and move on. Simply say it wasn’t for you at that particular time in your life. When you dredge on and on with “labeling” you only exaggerate your stupidity of your choice. We don’t need to be “saving” anyone from making the “same mistake we did”. Maybe it’s not for you but allow others the dignity of making their own choices & learning from them. Who knows, maybe the choice will be “great” for them.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    13 March 2009

    No “p”, all businesses are not MLMs. Businesses are businesses. MLMs are a pay to play system in which money is simply being passed up the chain and little to no real value is created. Even in Mary Kay, there is little value. Sure, the makeup products are theoretically the value and they theoretically can be sold for a profit. In reality, hundreds of thousands of dollars of unsellable products are sitting in closets and basements, and the pyramid toppers have gotten rich from that.

    By your logic, no survivor of domestic abuse should warn others about it or try to help them to get outt. We should let women get beat a few times and then make their own decisions as to whether or not domestic violence is really for them or not. If they don’t like getting beaten, they should leave the relationship and keep their mouths shut so other women can decide for themselves if getting beaten works for them or not.

    Obviously, that was sarcastic. Educating women about the evils of Mary Kay is a worthwhile effort.

  • Blessed says:
    13 March 2009

    Dear “p,”

    Mary Kay Cosmetics Corporation has to be commended for the way they’ve so successfully branded their confidence scam as an entity which battles the evils of date rape, cancer, etc. However, an organization truly interested in “enriching women’s lives” would (in my humble opinion) never target women with an MLM. The spectacular job of public relations this company has done is apparent. But the shine on the Mary Kay brand is being chiseled away by the growing number of revelations from women who’ve been scammed. The Mary Kay gleam is getting noticeably dull.

    In the beginning, years ago, I wish my wife and I would have had our “dignity” tread upon by anyone telling us to avoid this cult.

    Blessed

  • Bridget365 says:
    23 March 2009

    Hi Ben,

    I read both of your comments and have to agree with you, I didn’t see any data supporting Tracy’s claims regarding the 99% failure rate if MK Counsults. She keeps going back to the doom and destruction rant, with not real examples or number about why these women fail. It seems to me that a woman would be able to make money by building a strong customer base and give impeccable customer service. And the strong businesses I see (mlm, sole proprietorship, limited liability partnerships, or corporations) if you look closely at the successful ones, you’ll find a strong business plan, a marketing plan, vision & mission statement, and goal projections for 1, 3, 6mos and a year. I think that Mary Kay has the tools to create all of these. In addition any company that is successful measures sales, income, expenses, time & the goals set for themselves. And works from clairity of where they are and knows exactly where they are going.

    That said, if a consultant commits to focusing on giving an execellent classes (practicing and prep are a must) and follows the steps set by the MK training, they can do pretty well ~ but they would need to be organized too. It seems that they could scheduled 2nd classes from the first. Forget recruiting, just treat your customers like treasures, love them…

    Now, the 99% that “fail and/or are destroyed financially”, Tracy only talked about cycling new recruits who I guess don’t get started or change their minds or don’t get thier training and basic business tools set up. Otherwise I didn’t see any other specifi reasons for the failure except that MK is a scam and women should avaoid it…

    I have a business and participate in a business networking group and it’s really interesting to see how the physical therapist runs her clinic of 30 employees, how the printer runs his print shop of 12 employees, how the business coach opperates his business, how the graphic designer works her business, how the accupuncturist gets her business and how our Marketing Firm runs her business. All are successful, all have failed in previous efforts and all but a few have clairity about where they want their business to go and most importantly have a sound foundation of business tool that help them run their businesses. They respect thier businesses and they love their customers and guess what? Their customers love them. Now, we’ve had a few business owners who didn’t do well, the common thread that I saw (see) with them is their unwillingness to put their heart and energy into thier businesses – these are the people who show up and expect everyone else to work their businesses for them, they get mad if they don’t get referrals yet they consistently give no referrals nor do they support other members of the group. Much of the time they have sour attitudes…

    So my point is that there are folks who do well in business and those folks who haven’t found the thing that energizes them.

    Now many of our group members just started there business over the past two years, most are struggling financially however, they are making progress financially, they’re giving support and getting support.

    So Ben, I say all that to say that when this woman throw stones with such venom yet she is unable to give you a lucid explanation to justify throwing stones, I would agree with you, she doesn’t have any data or substantial answers ~ If you look at her responses, she’s flippant and reapeats the same wild unfounded claim that 99% of women in MK fail.

  • Bridget365 says:
    23 March 2009

    One more thing folks,

    Mary Kay in not a christian organization (read their liturature). Women mistakenly believe this. There are christain people who are consultants and people of all faiths who are consultants even some who are non-believers. I believe Mary Kay is supposed to opperate on the golden rule. I personally have no problem with faith, but I would want my business to focus on business. Religion is highly personal and I would hate to have my faith disrespected with someone cramming thier religion down my throat…

    Thanks!

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    23 March 2009

    Bridget – The support for the 99% claim is on this page. Sorry that you too, are unable to find it. The difference between MLM and a real business is that a real business is… well… REAL. And an MLM is a scheme that is nothing more than a legalized form of passing money up a pyramid. The product is meant to make it look legitimate, and the poor women trying to sell the product usually have no idea that their odds of being successful selling it are almost non-existent.

    Sure, it seems like it would be fairly easy to sell make-up and skincare, something that most women use regularly. The problem is that there are so many legitimate retail outlets selling thousands of products… many of them less expensive, and many of them better quality, than Mary Kay. These retail outlets have something the MK consultant will never have: foot traffic. Foot traffic is a basic, necessary principle required to make a retail outlet successful. There are so few women actually making a living selling the products (which you suggest could make the core of a successful business) because it’s next to impossible to build a stable base of customers large enough to do so. It’s not because women are lazy. It’s because the “business model” is a complete lie, and does nothing but set women up for failure.

  • FreeFromTheBS says:
    26 March 2009

    I was a MK consultant… a few times actually. No, I didn’t do very well (painfully shy). But I kept giving it “another try”. I used to despise the Pink Truth site and others like it. The stuff posted infuriated me. I told myself, “They’re just mad that they didn’t make it in the business. If they had tried harder, they would have.” I figured every post was typed up by some bitter ex-consultant who only had herself to blame for her failure.

    But then I woke up. I was finally able to admit to myself the sneaky bs that goes on in this business… things I did not want to admit to before. Man, was I in denial. But who really wants to admit that they are apart of a business that practices such sneaky dishonest techniques? The sad truth is that consultants are taught and told to tell possible recruits anything positive to make the opportunity sound too good to pass up. (“Practice interview” my arse.) I was finally able to admit that MK is not that wonderful opportunity it’s cracked up to be. And lemme tell ya, it’s been an incredibly freeing feeling!! Unfortunately, a dear friend just signed on. Now I have to stand by as I watch her fall in the same traps.

    What I don’t get is why so many consultants insist that those who have seen the truth are just bitter ex consultants who didn’t succeed. What about those directors who’ve seen the truth?? They were hardly unsuccessful. But, I guess it’s just the denial of those who don’t want to see the truth. I was one of them.

    I *have* to laugh at the previous poster (Darlene) who has to pay for her “free car”.. out of her savings, no less. Who wants to bet that she doesn’t DARE tell that little pink truth to her recruits or potential recruits?! I’m not laughing in a “ha ha” way…but because it’s ridiculous denial on her part. Sad.

    Tracy~ God bless you for spreading the word on the real truths about MK.

  • Molly says:
    10 April 2009

    My older sister recently became a MK beauty consultant. I was excited for her. She is a stay at home Mom and was looking for something that would not only get her out of the house but bring in some extra cash. Initially, I thought MK was for “old ladies” and for women who wear lipstick all the time (not me). I really never considered actually utilizing the product (I’m a Mac girl/addict). However, being the supportive sister I am, I agreed to host a party so she could begin building her client base. That turned into going to something else MK and then a “training class”, pearls, pink cars, red blazers, sales numbers and rebates and this and that and then before I knew it, I was actually seriously thinking about starting my “own business” and becoming a MK beauty consultant. I could smell the inside of my new pink car and hear the claps of my fellow MK consultants as I hit the $800 mark in one week. Then I decided I needed to really think about it and look into it, outside of the wonderful world of MK. My life has made many changes in the past year and I didn’t want to start something I would quit in a few months. That’s what boyfriends are for. Right?
    First of all I realized I didn’t really like the MK sales ladies. I love my sister and her friend, but all the other ladies, just were not the kind of girls I wanted to hang around with or even out-sell and become competitive with (because I know I would/could). I found them fake and cheesy and in all honesty, their make-up didn’t say to me: “You, yes you, could be like me, beautiful and successful. Mary Kay will make you millions”. I mean, if one was going to sell MK, your appearance should say such a thing, right?
    Secondly, I hate getting the “pitch”… how could I actually do the “pitch”. I am skeptic of many things and completely despise the sales pitch and pyramid sale gigs. I think I am great with people and could be an excellent sales woman. I am a good public speaker and make friends easy, but really could I do this? I once got into a yelling match with a guy trying to sell a time share. It was bad.
    Then I envisioned how much fun marketing would be; the party after party where people would fall in love with MK and be a client for life. I would mail fliers, cold call people from the phone book, get people from work and their friends and family and they too would love it. I would approach ladies when I’m out with my friends, at the grocery store or the nail salon. I even went as far as visiting a web-site and developed a magnet for the side of my car and business cards I would give EVERYONE. Then I woke up and joined reality. I am a very single mom with a good career. I have a 90K/yr salary, benefits and a two retirements. I have a son that I really want to do things with and be there for. When he is with his Dad, I want to be with my friends, get my nails done, go out and meet new people; maybe (god willing) even go on a date or two, three, four? I do not have the time it would take to make Mary Kay Millions.
    Lastly, I did exactly what one should do when considering a new venture. I researched and realized it defiantly wasn’t for me. I am not in a position to take on any additional debt and I know me, I would. I strive to be the best in everything I do and would worry that I would lose a client if I didn’t have exactly what they wanted; the right shadow color, the men’s shave gel or perfume to smell. I know I couldn’t afford to have everything in inventory. Now, I am not saying that “they” tell you to go out and buy everything nor do they encourage you to spend your savings, but women do. I would.
    Ultimately, I have decided the “Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultant” title belongs to my sister who I hope will be successful. I will continue to have MK parties and support her in any way I can. I will refer my friends and when commented on my make-up, I will say proudly, Mary Kay.
    However, I will not be breaking up with my Mac dealer anytime soon.
    Good luck to everyone in their MK endeavors.

  • Mollie says:
    10 April 2009

    I respect what you’re saying! (It’s always refreshing to find women with opinions, and since I have a lot of them, I understand your “pointless” fight.) I agree that the system is unfair and takes advantage of those who work under it.

    However, what I can support about MK is the fact that it complies with the Leaping Bunny standard, and it is one of the only American cosmetics companies to do so. The Leaping Bunny certification (found on their website) is the only assurance that consumers have of buying a cruelty-free product. Many companies claim to not test on animals, but there are no regulations which determine the validity of the claims- except for the crazy Leaping Bunny people. Their standards are amazingly thorough and they strictly document everything. I am staunchly against animal testing and have been a strict vegetarian for eight years. Frankly I feel worse for rabbits and kittens that are having their eyes injected with chemicals which go in women’s mascara, than I do for women who can educate themselves and choose not to get involved in a company that takes advantage of them. The information is there, obviously, if you’ve written this post- people should make the effort to find it.

    Although MK should match the way they treat animals with the way they treat their consultants, this change won’t happen until more of them complain and actually understand what’s going on.

  • Jamie says:
    13 April 2009

    Wow!! I am very sad to read soo much negativity! I am not sure how I came across this blog…
    anyways, I woud like to say that I believe in mary kay! I am 24yrs old and have been working since I was 19. No other job or work has made me feel as good about myself as mary kay has! I finally listen to my mom and sister to be apart of this and joined Jan 09. I am a future sales director and I am proud to say that my younger sister is my senior director! I dont think my own sister would want to make me invest money on something that does not work.
    Tracy,
    I am not sure why your business in mary kay went wrong and I am sorry it didnt work out for you!!! I was reading your responses to all the comments here on mary kay behalf and I notice how passionate you are about delivering a message to Stop people from taking up on this opportunity! You seem like a very strong person with a very strong character! I believe that your intentions are good but you dont realize that instead of helping those proclaimed 99% of women who have failed, you are actually harming them! How are u different from what you are going againts? If Mary Kay to you is such a negative opportunity why dont you spend your time and efforts in creating a new means of support or a “better” opportunity for those people who were like me in a dead end job with a family to support. My mother wanted to pay for my school, I wanted to be an Interior decorator…After seeing her in the Mary kay business after just seven years, I witness alot of positivity!!!! I have the honor to know alot of ladies whose lives were chnged when my mom presented the mary kay opportunity to them! My mom does not speak a word in english and has been in this amazing company for just 7years and is now holding the national director position! She was alone and she had a bad experience with the person that gave her the opportunity…but my mom did not quit! There are good and bad people out there and unfortunatly there are good and bad people in mary kay!!!!! This is a business not a charity program. No one is telling us, the new consultants to invest $100 and we’ll get rich the next day!!!! LAdies with everything u do u have to put hard work and dedication!!!! Try opening a new business on your own, you may be successful you may not….but not alot of places give you the 90% buy back guarantee, whether mary kay has to give it to us or not, it does!!!! Open a beauty spa, a store, or anything like that and see that if you are not succesful the bank will buy it back!…( yeah…right)
    If you are a consultant do not let things like these shatter your dreams!!!!! MARY KAY IS FOR EVERYONE BUT NOT EVERYONE IS FOR MARY KAY!!!! THose of you who are in mary kay work with determination, goals, and God as your business partner…..Help others and follow the Golden rule!!!! GOD FIRST, FAMILY SECOND, CAREER THIRD!!….
    Luv, Jamie

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    13 April 2009

    Hi Jamie – My Mary Kay business didn’t go wrong. Fortunately, I was one of the 1% who do not lose money. Thankfully, though, I got out when I did. This is a destructive company that is a wolf in sheep’s clothing. It is my mission to expose that so hundreds of thousands of women can possibly be spared the financial losses.

    My purpose in life is not to give women a job. It is to expose fraud and scams, which is exactly what I’m doing here and in my consulting business. I love what I do, and will continue to expose Mary Kay and companies like it until I die.

  • Jamie says:
    13 April 2009

    Tracy, I am very sorry for what you are doing here! If this is what you say it is God will act with justice with the Mary Kay company. I am proud of being part of it and I am recruiting people into doing what I do b/c I am new as a consultant but I have been around it since I was 16 b/c of my mom. LEt me tell you something, If this is a scam..I have yet to see it and seeing how my mother worked the business I dont think it is!….I do believe some people just dont work it right!….You may find it bad but it isnt! I have been taught to help others…I am able to tell my girls to work hard and have been honest to them about what this is about from the start. I have not persued anybody to buy massive amount of inventory or anything they could not afford! I do tell them that it is better to start big! They make their decision. Mary kay is not an easy way out of debt or financial hardship. Its like every other business out there! The only difference is that you have people who can help you and motivate you to do great!…I do respect your opinion and I wish I could help you change it but I see that your mind is set to what you believe. I have my own and you and I have two very different opinions. Realize that what doesnt work or didnt work for you for one reason or another will work for someone else! While you are in here spreading your hatred for this company I am here to spread good news and celebrate my success and success of many other people who have done and is doing MAry Kay the right way!!!! You said “My purpose in life is not to give women a job. It is to expose fraud and scams, which is exactly what I’m doing here and in my consulting business. I love what I do, and will continue to expose Mary Kay and companies like it until I die.”
    This is scary to me, but like I said before you should try instead to dedicate your entire life to inviting women to do what you do as a consultant in whatever else. You might not realize it but you could be what you say mary kay is…except you are not in sheeps clothes! If you wnat to help people out do it without hurting other consultants who are working hard to be successful…. If this blog was about you being soo negative would you care? I dont think so, you would just ignore it. MAry Kay Inc is probably unaware of these blogs but im glad they are or are ignoring it. I know that not everything in MAry Kay is Good…I dont think we are naive to even consider that but is the best thing out there in my opinion. Hey!!…..Its changing my life! While you are planning on dedicating your entire life to make sure mary kay is exposed you may actually be waking up someones curiosity to see what company htis is and after doing the research they may want to try it to form their own opinion! You may never know..all I know is that you are failing miserably becasue while some women are quitting others are joining…I have associated 12 people in less than 2 months! Who will fail and who will prevail is completely up to them but I will work hard to help them be successful! I will try my best and I may fail for some b/c I cannot do the work for them….but the ones who really want to get ahead and not give up will be successful!!!! Best wishes to you! I hope you continue to fail against mary kay inc. I say that in the most respecful way. I believe you are a good person and have the right intentions but not the right information!…..Good Luck!:)

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    13 April 2009

    The fact that 99% of women who participate in MK lose money is a FACT, and not an opinion. I haven’t dedicated my life to Mary Kay. I have dedicated it to fraud and scams in general. If even one woman turns her back on the Mary Kay lie because of what she reads here, I consider this site and http://www.pinktruth.com a complete success. The Pink Truth readership has returned more than $3 million retail value of products to Mary Kay and gotten their money back. That is a huge success as well, especially since many of them didn’t know they could get their money back or didn’t know how to get as much as possible back.

  • Pinky4u says:
    14 April 2009

    Yes… it is so interesting that people have the time to sit and do these things! Tracey, I am so glad that you have been able to get 3 million dollars back for these people that you help, yet you still want to complain about how horrible Mary Kay is. I think ultimately you confirm over and over how much integrity as a company Mary Kay has. Thanks!

  • Blessed says:
    14 April 2009

    Pinky4u,

    Well stated. I agree with you.

    You said to Tracy, “I believe ultimately you confirm over and over how much integrity as a company May Kay has.”

    And thank God for that!!! Thank God there is an outlet to serve as an effective counter to the blather promulgated by the Mary Kay Cosmetics MLM machine. One can only imagine the multitude of women who’ve been helped by a perspective other than the polished spew emanating from marykay.com. The testimony of survivors presented at PinkTruth.com is so incredibly valuable.

    I have such a default faith in our constitution, our freedoms. Yet it hurts my heart to see an outlet of the mainstream media promoting Mary Kay Cosmetics as a viable option in poor economic times. One of the major networks recently may well have been an advertising agency selling time to MK! So sad, and all the more reason for the voices at PinkTruth.com.

    I’ve known many who’ve chosen to cower in the shadow of embarrassment emanating from being so effectively TAKEN, duped and injured by the Mary Kay Cosmetics MLM experience. I’m thankful TC has chosen to provide a conduit for the many voices left in the wake of the MK MLM cult.

    TC, I salute you and what you’re doing as a public service through maintaining PinkTruth.com. You keep your head up and please keep at it!

    Blessed

    ….Mary Kay integrity….tsk, tsk, tsk (you’re killing me here)

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    14 April 2009

    Why thank you, Blessed. Yeah, it’s kind of ironic isn’t it? The words “integrity” and “Mary Kay” certainly don’t belong in the same sentence.

  • Jamie says:
    15 April 2009

    Pinky4u,
    I see your point!… Its too sad that other people do not!
    That is a valiable point you have hit there…These women got their money back just as Mary Kay promises that they will if business does not turn out to be for them!!!! I am proud of Tracy because she has helped them get it back though! Some people know that they have this guarantee from the beginning….Some people do, but they do not send it back b/c its easier to use it and give it to friends and family! I knw that If I stopped doing MAry Kay ( which I know I wont) I would keep it! I love the product and hey its 50% off! Tracy I am glad that you are actually helping people get their money back!:) If I have consultants who want to quit I will do encorage them to return it so that they dont lose money!

  • Pinky4u says:
    15 April 2009

    Question: I have read over and over that ALL MLM’s are a scam, so why do you only focus on MaryKay?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    15 April 2009

    Mary Kay gets no credit in my book for “giving back” the money of consultants. First, the consultants still lose money because they don’t get all of it back (only 90%), nor do they get refunded for all the supplies or out-of-pocket costs from their MK experience. But the real reason I don’t pat MK on the back? They are no better than the thief who steals your car and then later gives it back. It’s still wrong to steal it.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    15 April 2009

    Pinky – I have no idea where you got the notion that I only focus on Mary Kay. I don’t.

  • Pinky4u says:
    15 April 2009

    Well, if that’s the case where is your blog about Amway, Arbonne, Avon etc… I want to see it if you don’t only focus on Mary Kay. If you are stating facts than prove it!

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    15 April 2009

    Other companies are discussed on this site and http://www.pinktruth.com. Have a look around. It’s all here for you to look at.

  • Duped says:
    15 April 2009

    “…I am so glad that you have been able to get 3 million dollars back for these people that you help, yet you still want to complain about how horrible Mary Kay is. I think ultimately you confirm over and over how much integrity as a company Mary Kay has.”

    Good gravy! Do your homework, silly Pink-bot. Mary Kay Cosmetics does not offer the 90% buy back guarantee out of the goodness of their heart, and certainly not because they have integrity. That is a requirement if they don’t want to be classified as a product-based pyramid scheme. And they don’t.

  • Duped says:
    15 April 2009

    OK, I apologize, because that was rude and uncalled for. I guess my point is this: Don’t shoot the messenger. Tracy has done a huge amount of research. You haven’t – yet.

  • Pinky4u says:
    15 April 2009

    Thank you Ben. I think you may be the most intelligent person on this page. Possibly because men think rationally and with facts instead of on emotion like women.
    As everyone said this is not for everyone. Sales in general is not for everyone. My experience in Mary Kay has been short of perfect, but all the bad points were because of something I did. I have been in for 4 years, and it has gotten me through college. Just this week, I sold $300 dollars(which is not a lot for me), but I had no shows, no phone calls, nothing except for my customers calling me and ordering their product because THEY love it, not because I make them like it. If I were working at the mall (like many college students) I would have to work at lease 25 hours to make what I did by sitting at home. Now, tell me how is that so terrible? Any sales business is about attitude and customer service and there is no way around that. My husband is a great salesman but when(escuse my language) a piss-poor attitude; he sales reflect that. This would be the same with a Mary Kay business.

  • 4HisGlory says:
    22 April 2009

    Let me start by saying I am not a consultant and am in no way affiliated with MK. I used to have the same negative thoughts of this blog and the pinktruth website. My opinion has changed. This company was founded on Christian principles and puts God first, which is not popular these days. When you are on the path to righteousness and trying to glorify God’s kingdom you will always have obstacles and people who will say many nasty things to stop you from doing it. There are many businesses with the same business structure that have not been a success. For 45 years MK has been trashed, given a bad reputation and had many people try to “expose” them. The reason they are still successful – easy they have put God first. The bible says – no weapon formed against me shall prosper.

    They have the MK Charitable foundation that helps cancer research for women and help victims of domestic violence. All you have done is highlight the negative things that you feel about MK. Try doing some true research on the good that this company has done.

    I know what you will say the bad far out weighs the good. Nothing can be better than glorifying God and trying to save souls for His Kingdom.

  • True Believer says:
    22 April 2009

    “4HisGlory,” how exactly does building a temple to Mammon glorify the Christian G_d? No amount of charitable works can redeem an enterprise of avarice.

  • Paotie says:
    22 April 2009

    4HisGlory ..

    You said: “Nothing can be better than glorifying God and trying to save souls for His Kingdom.”

    I disagree. In my humble opinion, there can be nothing more gratifying or liberating than accepting that there is no G-d.

    Conversely, just because your group worships a god does not mean you are any less ethical or professional approaches than other organizations. I could give you a litany of religious crooks but I will save you the embarrassment.

    Anyway, Tracy .. with this economic recession, people would do well to be aware of marketing gimmicks designed to make people feel temporarily empowered to buy lipstick because G-D told them.

    People wanna know why we’re in a financial recession?

    Blame G-d.

    :oP

    Paotie

  • istoppeddrinkingthekoolaid says:
    23 April 2009

    I normally do my homework before buying things, (tv’s blu-ray players, etc) and I didnt with MK. My Husband sells it and got me drinking the Koolaid.. after being told I couldnt sell an empty wagon, spent my IRS refund check on product, then spent 1/2 my paycheck to fill orders, and while I’m shopping it said “only 200 more dollars to get more free prodcut” and I shopped. “I can sell the free prodcut!” I thought, yeah, maybe. Then I found the pink truth website. I suddenly felt buyers remorse. I am having a full sale on my inventory, and what I dont sell, I’m sending back. I want out. I’ll stick to my technology support job. I’m sure I could sell the heck out of this product, being a gay man, but I really dont want to get sucked in and then out of LOTS of cash.

    Thanks Tracey. I dont think you’re doing a bad thing. Some people can make it work, but as you move further up the pyramid your motives change. I especiallay dont like that your customers become your competition. That makes NO SENSE! Anyway, I have to go to work at my REAL JOB. Have a nice day!

  • mm says:
    23 April 2009

    I am a brand new consultant with the company. It depends on the experiences that a man/or woman (there are men consultants out there!) has with a business venture. You have to be diligent, do your research, count all expenses and profit. “SOMEONE” has to be ground a consultant about what makes sense and what doesn’t. A brand new consultant has all the influence from the recruiter, directors, etc. who will pump her up to sell, recruit and have an inventory!!!
    1. WHY PURCHASE AN INVENTORY WHEN YOU HAVE ENOUGH IN YOUR SHELF FOR NOW?
    2. WHY NOT ORDER PRODUCTS AT THE END OF EACH MONTH WHEN CUSTOMERS HAVE PLACED THEM ALREADY? JUST TELL THEM THAT “you are placing orders at the end of each month, so that they wont have to pay for shipping! Most of the time, ordering customers will wait.
    3. DO NOT USE YOUR OWN PERSONAL MONIES TO MEET QUOTAS, TO WIN FAKE GIFTS MADE FROM CHINA! COMMON SENSE THAT’S ALL!!!!!!!!!!
    4. DO NOT BE LURED WITH CONTESTS/ PRIZES / COMPETITIONS HERE AND THERE IF YOU HAVE TO SPEND YOUR OWN MONEY, PURCHASE UNNECESSARY INVENTORY SO THAT YOU CAN WIN A “GOLD PLATED PIN WITH CZ SPARKLES ON IT!!! Follow your Head (that’s where the brain is located and makes all rational decisions) , and ignore the impulsive and emotional heart!

    I could go on and on about the business. However, I pray to God to guide and enlighten me. If He has placed this challenge in my plate, then let HIM show me the truth!!!
    In closing, I am satisfied with the service that I provide with my small circle of customers. They value my opinion as I value theirs. I stay true to myself, separate my needs and wants for this business.

    Good luck ladies!!! And God speed.

    mm

  • Cathy says:
    30 April 2009

    You really need to focus your efforts on slandering a strong profitble company some where else. I am a smart business women who made six figures in a corporate world and have come to be involved with Mary Kay Cosmetics. I knew exactly what I was getting into, but being an intelligent person, able to make my own decisions, as is the majority of the free world that we live in, I made the decision to carry only the minimum inventory to sell the product. I place orders only based on need and not persuasion. Persuasion, is a common sales practice in every business ie: buying a car, buying applicances etc. You imply that all these women are stupid and helpless unable to make an intellegent decisions.

    Direct Sales, including Mary Kay is difficult and requires a persistance and focus that not all people are able to do or do not want to sustain for long periods of time. Real Estate is similar in that you have to work to earn your customer base and 80% of the real estate agents do not make it. They go into it thinking that it’s easy business. I submit to you that it is direct sales and you will always have a large number of people who do not understand what it takes to make it work and leave dissatisfied.

    Additionally, the product is very high quality and by far surpasses discount brands and can easily compete with department
    store brands offering a much better value. I personally, use the product and have for several years as well as most other products currently available today and have seen improved health of my skin from Mary Kay products.

    MK was the #2 charity giver in the metroplex last year…they are a company that cares about their employees and the community they live in.

    I would challenge you to move on and subtantiate your facts especially your comments on the quality before you slander a good business…..

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    30 April 2009

    Cathy – Just a few comments since we’ve been through all this hundreds of times here and at pinktruth.com. First, the MK products are drug store quality, at best. They are nowhere near the quality of true prestige brands. It doesn’t mean they’re bad, necessarily. Heck, there are several drug store products that I love. We just shouldn’t pretend that MK is better.

    I have never implied that the women who got involved with Mary Kay are stupid or helpless. What I have said, is that they have been lied to. And unfortunately, they were lied to by women they trusted. They were manipulated by women they trusted. That’s really the problem.

    Thanks for your participation.

  • Cathy says:
    30 April 2009

    And your substantiation for stating the quality of the brand is inferior ….you have done scientific testing of the product and can justify your comments with facts on the ingredients vs other discount brands? Please do so for all….giving us the facts vs other brands?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    1 May 2009

    Cathy – I haven’t scientifically tested the ingredients any more than you have. I have simply used MK products, as well as hundreds of other brands, and form my opinions on the quality based on that. One simple example: Timewise doesn’t get your face clean. Use a white washcloth immediately after washing with Timewise, and my point is proven. On the other hand, my drug store cleanser actually does clean my face. I could go through the entire MK product line in this fashion and tell you why the MK products are inferior. :)

  • ExMKDirector says:
    1 May 2009

    For those who do not believe that the majority lose money, I can attest to that fact. I ran a great positive Unit for ten years, had offspring Directors and won 6 premier level cars. My Unit was always in the top ten of our National area. The problem is retail sales to consumers are negligable except for the experienced sales savvy individual, but that is NOT who we are asked to recruit. We are told to cast a broad net (3 foot rule) so a large percentage of women get into debt buying product, not because they are replacing sold inventory, but because they are trying to win awards and recognition. The churning of personnel is absolutely painful. I recently saw my old IBM’s and realized that 95% of my yearly Unit members were gone within two years. Most sooner than that. We are told we must recruit 5 a month to stay even with attrition.
    Very few of these women will return their merchandise for the 90% buyback because we have trained them to believe they didn’t try hard enough. That’s why many here think it is a consultant problem, not a MLM problem. To make it in Mary Kay you have to be willing to endlessly recruit, using “potential” truth as opposed to actual reality. And every word is crafted for the best possible light in order to get guests to sign on. Full disclosure would kill Mary Kay. Selling at the consultant level is fine..but the career path is treacherous. All of my DIQ’s were over 20K in debt by the time the reality started hitting me.
    We look the other way to survive, telling ourselves “no one held a gun to their heads”…but we did in a way. We promoted the NSD lifestyle and the “big Girls Club” to get them to want it, and all our lingo was about being a “speed of the leader” woman…meaning they could never let up and always had to be a star consultant.

    No, no guns to any heads but a whole lot of manipulation. I could no longer do it and I left at the top of the game. Truth is, supporters of MK on this site do not know the inside workings…and believe instead, all of our canned hype.

    I’ll ask each of you to call your Directors and ask her point blank to see her schedule c. She shouldn’t balk..after all she wants you to have her job, right? You will grow old waiting.

  • Martha says:
    1 May 2009

    Wow, I read the comments posted above, and want to thank you, as you saved me from making a huge mistake.. Although I do like the products very much, I will remain just as a client with my consultant….

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    1 May 2009

    Psst…. You can get your MK products much cheaper at ebay.com or touchofpinkcosmetics.com.

  • MKexDaughter says:
    2 May 2009

    I have been subject to manipulation by my own mother who has had me purchase product to help her frontload. After giving her my credit card number to make purchases I noticed that the amount she charged was way over the amount she said she would. I canceled my card. I demanded repayment and it was received thankfully. She asked for that money behind her husband’s back. Told me not to tell him or my husband. I do not lie to my husband. The next year I found out that she was after money again by way of hearing from my sister-in-law who was suckered into being a consultant under Mom. I knew a call was imminent so I looked up Mary Kay to find out more and found the pink truth and pinkingshears websites. With my eyes wide open I finally got the call. I was finally aware of being “soft talked” for 20 minutes before “the pitch” came. When she went into “the Pitch” I was kind of dumbfounded. It made the “soft talk” so fake and phony. She didn’t really want to know about her grandchildren, she was waiting to launch into her “I really need to make quota speech”. I cut her off and told her that I would not help her again with MK product and that I felt she was being manipulated by her director which then caused her to manipulate me. I then told her that we could not talk about MK again. Sadly, she has not called often in the past year. There’s nothing else to talk about except MK in her life. MK fits her personality, she is good with people and she has always known how to manipulate. She can continue to do that with the general public but not with me. The latest news happened last week. She called my brother for my sister-in-law’s personal info. ssn, driver’s license, mother’s maiden name. My brother did not have that information. Later, my sister-in-law called mom and asked her what was up. Mom wanted to re-sign her up as a consultant even though there had been a previous discussion that she would not continue with MK. Mom would have done all this behind her back. My mom cannot see the harm in it. In fact she sounds just like all the MK supporters who commented above. You are regurgitating your praise from the same script. I’ve heard it and it’s sickening. MK doesn’t just destroy Women’s lives, it breaks families.

  • Cwladdy30 says:
    3 May 2009

    I have been wearing Mary Kay products for about 5 years and recently started selling MK products. They are top of the line. I have tried other products to no prevail. MK may not be for everyone just like other products may not. I don’t buy inventory. Customers buying the products through me suffices well. I have had very few complaints from customers. In all reality no one can please everyone. MK doesn’t break up families or destroy lives. The people abusing and taking advantage of others are the actual perpetrators. And that’s not all consultants or directors. I do understand that some people try to gain at any cost and shouldn’t. If I have a customer that cannot buy at the present time or makes a comment about her/his spouse not being happy because of their spending, I back away and tell them that I understand and that it’s not that important. I have even told them that it’s not worth an argument of fight and to call me later if their able. In my life my family comes first and I respect that for others. It all depends on the type of person we are.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    3 May 2009

    Mary Kay most certainly does destroy lives and families. How, you ask? By encouraging, promoting and condoning the rampant deception and manipulation. The company knows these tactics are required in order to make money… the company dies without constant new recruits with large inventory orders. Most of those recruits and orders were accomplished with deception. Mary Kay can’t live without it.

  • diane says:
    3 May 2009

    great opportunity however it requires patience and effort and work. i have 2 successful business ventures that i WORK at. iam saddened to hear negative comments when it is solely up to the individual to put in all that is required. GOD BLESS MARY KAY

  • ExMKDirector says:
    3 May 2009

    The few that can make money do not mitigate the tens of thousands who don’t, yet are told that “Mary Kay sells itself”. Mk relies heavily on appearances. Women are introduced as Cadillac Directors, who have been making co-pays for the majority of their “award”. Directors stand up and share with guests at events that their high check is XXXXX.XX…in order to make the guests think that that figure is normal and routine. It may have happened decades ago!

    Bottom line. Full disclosure is the only honest way to deal with new recruits. How much do Directors really make. How many consultant really service this area, What are the average gross sales of a part time consultant. These kinds of things would help women make informed decisions. The FTC is attempting to regulate this full disclosure for the Direct Selling Industry and that would kill Mary Kay. If they had nothing to hide, they wouldn’t have lined up top Directors and NSD’s in a PR video to defend against it – along with firing up lobbyists to stop it. How on earth could “full disclosure” be a negative thing to a company that claims to be Christian based, with God first?

    In 2005, Tom Whatley the former President of US Sales stated that the average number of classes held per month in the US was ….ONE. That is Not AT ALL what is sold to that young hopeful, Mary Kay consultant. Mary Kay does not track retail sales to a consumer at all…but they knew that one class was the average. So what they have effectively done is create a phony business to women, baiting them to order wholesale quantities of product they will eventually only use for themselves. And the expectations for Directors are even more financially murky. Directors are pressed upon to maintain Unit production–with their own cash, because NSD’s don’t want to lose downline. None of this is revealed to a Director in Qualification or Future Director.

  • Krist says:
    6 May 2009

    Tracy, you have got your lines crossed. Next time that you decide to bash a company step back and take time to observe how the hell you are brain washing someone to beleive that this company is crap. Do you know that the business plan of Mary Kay is accually tought in such school as Harvard and Yale. If I was you I would double check my sources. You have only talked to the women that decided not to make any thing of there Mary Kay business, and that is fine it was not for them. There are a lot of things that are not ment for some people to do in this world. Everyone has there own talant. If everyone had the same talant or job were the hell would this world be. Grow the hell up and find something that deserves to be bashed.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    6 May 2009

    No, Mary Kay is not “acually” taught at Harvard and Yale. Mary Kay sucks and the representatives are the laughing stock of the business world.

  • ExMKDirector says:
    6 May 2009

    Krist, glad you weighed in. You just regurgitiated one of hundreds of manipulative lies that MK is famous for. It is interesting that you acuse Tracy here of not having the facts straight. Watch yourself now, because already you are showing the signs of the classic dupe. No, Mary Kay’s marketing plan is NOT taught at Harvard…No there are not more millionaires in Mary Kay than any other company. No, women in MK leadership do NOT make “executive pay for part time hours.” The typical solid Grand Prix Director pulling 8K production is making about 22,000 a year BEFORE expenses. Not what you thought, huh? Her expenses, frugally will be aroung 8-9 K per year. So that woman who wants you to “be in the big girls club” wants you to attempt the career path so you can earn about 12,000 a year plus sales profits. Does that sound like “executive pay” to you? Sorry to burst your pink bubble.

  • Debbie says:
    7 May 2009

    Krist, I first have to say-PLEASE before you attempt to leave another comment on a blog – PLEASE proof it for spelling and grammar! Tracy, I believe that you do know what you are talking about based on your eperience and expertise, however, there are some of us who do sign on as MK consultants, not for the sales and income benefit, but to save money on a good product. I used to hate MK products, until I tried them again a few years ago – maybe it was age that changed? Who knows, but the end result is that I purchase my product supply once a year to maintain my status, and I do this so that I have what I need for the rest of the year. I have my purchase planned for time of year when new products are released so that I may take advantage of that opportunity. I do not sell to others, force others to have “classes”, etc. I purchase for the benefit of myself, my daughter, and a few friends! Thanks for your thoughts on this.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    7 May 2009

    Debbie – You could get the same products at the same cost (and often even LESS) via ebay or touchofpinkcosmetics.com. No need to be a consultant and go through the hassle.

  • Bernadette says:
    19 May 2009

    I am A MARY KAY SENIOR CONSULTANT, 22 YEARS OLD AND IN THE COMPANY FOR 7 MONTHS. MARY KAY MAKES ME HAPPY, I AM WITH MY FAMILY I GET TO CHOOSE MY SCHEDULE AND I MAKE MONEY. ISNT THAT ALL THAT MATTERS IN LIFE???????
    DIDNT GOD PUT US ON THIS EARTH TO LIVE OUR LIFES THE WAY WE WANT???????
    MARY KAY HERSELF WANTED TO SHOW US WOMEN WHO COULDNT FIND A JOB THAT MADE US HAPPY!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    DAMN YOU ALL WHO ARE AGAINST THIS COMPANY!!!!!!!
    YOU SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF YOUR SELFS…..,, THIS IS THE BEST COMPANY IN THE WORLD AND I’LL TELL YOU WHAT………… NEGATIVITY SHALL BRING YOU A NEGATIVE LIFE….. BUT A POSITIVE ATITTUDE SHALL BRING YOU HAPPYNESS!!!!!!!!!!!
    IM GUESSING THOSE WHO ARE AGIANST THIS COMPANY AREN’T DOING SO WELLL RIGHT THIS DAY!!!!!!!!1 HA,HA,HA…..
    I KNOW IM HAPPY AND ALL THE MARY KAY CONSULTANTS IN JERESY LOVE MARY KAY AND WE ALL USE THIER PRODUCTS…….
    HAVE A WONDERFUL DAY EVERYONE! :)
    :)
    :)
    :)
    :)
    :)

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    19 May 2009

    I admit it. Illiterate commenters like this always crack me up!

  • Andrea says:
    20 May 2009

    Tracy,

    Thank you so much for starting this blog. I began reading it last night and have read through every single comment. I had been considering becoming a consultant (but was having doubts) and I’ve decided against it. I appreciate all of the women (and men) that have spoken out against the scams and unethical tactics that are shamelessly displayed by certain MK affiliates. I’m sure there are countless others who have chosen not to post that are just as thankful as I am for you and the other lovely ladies sparing us loss and heartbreak! Thanks again and I’m off to read Pink Truth now.

  • coco says:
    25 May 2009

    I went to a Mary Kay meeting with a friend who earned her Star. I thought it was very cheesey but at the same time was impressed by the accomplishments of the Directors and Mary Kay lifers. I bought my starter kit for $100 and started using the products. I cannot sell something that I don’t believe in and love myself. I needed to see whether it was deserving of all the credit that the products were getting. Shortly after that, my director started hounding me with phone calls and emails to get my shows together and to buy my inventory. Thousands of dollars of inventory. The mind set is, if you have it, people will buy it. You satisfy them with giving them instant gratification of purchasing, the product and going home with it. On top of that attending the meetings which they charge you for. You have to attend 3 meetings a week, one being on Saturday mornings. To make a long story very short, the products made me break out terribly. I have never had a skin problem, ever! I felt that the makeup was just ok. They did their dog and pony show and I just couldn’t buy into it. It surely felt like a pyramid to me. When you shell out your $4500.00 to buy your products, the director who is hounding you to buy them gets a commission. I am not going to say that you can’t make money doing it. You have to be dedicated and work it and recruit so YOU get paid. As long as the company stays in business, its all of the $100 starter kits, meetings they charge you for, and the thousand dollars you pay for inventory that puts money in their pockets.(they pay pennies for them) Its a mind game, I just chose not to buy into it! (anyone looking for a starter kit)???

  • Duped says:
    26 May 2009

    I guess to speak the truth about Mary Kay is HERESY in JERESY.

    DAMN US ALL! Yeesh, Kaybots are kreepy.

  • Kaitlyn says:
    27 May 2009

    the representatives are the laughing stock of the business world tracey? you dont think the many people who stumble across this site each day arent at home laughing at you who checks this site 5X a day, everyday, for a year? seriously.. get a life! you are pathetic. there are plenty of successful mary kay women out there. that is a fact. what are you trying to prove? everyday people invest too much of their own money into things they dont really need. how often do we actually spend money on necessities? hardly ever because most of the time we DO have extra money to spend. The fact that some women choose to spend their money on these cosmetics is not a bad thing at all. either you are a skin care genius and know everything and anything there is to know about all skin care companies and cosmetics (in that case, wine away!) or you are a poor bitter women who obviously has nothing else to do other than try and make everyone around her as ugly as she is, inside and out.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    28 May 2009

    Kaitlyn – I love comments from people like you. You can’t actually refute anything I’ve said, so instead you attack and insult me. :)

  • Kaitlyn says:
    28 May 2009

    it’s not that i can not actually refute the information you’ve provided me with its the fact that i dont spend my time trying to make others feel bad about themselves when they’ve been given hope and a chance to make some extra money.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    28 May 2009

    Excellent comment Kaitlyn. That “hope” and “chance” come only through massive deception employed by Mary Kay Inc. and its independent contractors. At no time during the recruiting process are women told the truth: That they have a greater than 99% chance of losing money with MK. That’s not much hope..,, so the truth is hidden. Thus we have this site and pinktruth.com, through which I attempt to educate women about this reality so they don’t throw their money down a black hole.

  • Vivi says:
    4 June 2009

    My comments towards this article is that is sort of true how mary kay work in a pyramid scheme. In order to be able to have a car from mary kay or a trip to visit other countries, you must have a lot of other women under you.
    In my case, I am using mary kay, just to buy and resale at a very good percentage for my own sake. I am doing this so I can have money in my pocket. That’s the whole point right?.. Anywho, I just started and what I have done is, not go to the reunions, and not do the classes and not buy the sample products to spend money on that.
    I give to the girls and guys I know the catalog for Mary Kay products and they sell itself, like the girl that got me to start mary kay.
    So if no one wants to buy from me, I wont have to order, if someone wants to buy great, I’ll make that order and show them how to do step by step the process on how to use the product.
    So yeah is true, is a pyramid scheme and whoever disagrees is ok with me, I am happy though with mary Kay until now, the girls sometimes i feel they want to push me to go to reunions and this and that, but since I am a very busy women, I take my time more to listen to my customers and give them the answers the deserve. So I read as much as I can about the ingredients in the products and how would it benefit my customers because without them I wouldn’t sell anything..

    Thanks,
    -vivi

  • Shelley Lundie says:
    11 June 2009

    WHO CARES….there are so many more things to put your energy into. So many things that need a voice ….it is pitiful that anyone would spend so much time “warning” people about MK. If you don’t want to do it, sell it, wear it…then don’t. good grief.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    12 June 2009

    That could be said for any “cause,” couldn’t it? No matter what you choose to speak out about or inform others about, isn’t there always an issue that’s more important?

  • Myla says:
    16 June 2009

    I actually just signed up to be a consultant last week. I paid $100 to start and when I had the meeting with my director, she showed me all the products and also showed me the $3600, $1800, etc. investments that women can make to start an inventory of products.

    I have been thinking about trying this company for awhile, but I’m no dummy. We’re in a recession right now and I’m not going to put myself into any further debt by paying for all those products up front. If the company is so successful I should just order the products directly from them and there should be no problem, right? I want to make sure I can actually get anyone to buy this stuff b4 I spend my money is such a risky way.

    And as far as recruiting goes, if this is essential to any kind of success in this company…I might have to give this up now. I don’t want to annoy any women with pressure to join or even ask them, actually. My aunt quit because the lady she was working with was annoying her. My director is actually pretty nice and seems like she’s legit with what she’s been telling me, but I’m still going to be very careful of her. I don’t plan on spending any extra money until I make some money.

    And if she starts calling me everyday “following up” as she calls it. I will definitely end this, but she’s been pretty respectful so far.

    We’ll see what happens and I will definitely be back to report how it’s going.

  • Eve says:
    7 July 2009

    I have spent over an hour reading all of these replies. I am so confused as to what to do. I don’t know whether to stick with Mary Kay or run for my life! I have been a MK consultant for the better part of two weeks now and have had only one party with a whole $30.00 in sales! Most of the questions running through my head have been answered here, but I still think that there’s got to be something to this MK thing. Not EVERYONE has failed so if I work hard enough I might get what I was hoping for. My director never really pressured me into buying a large inventory, it was my decision to get the 1,800 wholesale, but now I’m starting to wonder if I made a good choice. I did almost max out most of my credit cards to try to get this inventory so then I could qualify as a “star” and have stuff on hand for my customers. Money which I also had to borrow form my mother and boyfriend. I consider myself pretty smart, and thought that yes they do seem to all say the same script and they do seem like they are always telling only one part of the story, but sometimes I tend to over think things and I don’t want to be pushed one way or the other by people with bad experiences. I do have bigger plans to start my own bakery, but thought “well, if this MK thing works out the way they tell you it will, then I’ll have enough money to start what I really want to do.”
    So…I’m not here to say MK sux or MK is great. There are things that I think Mary Kay has done as far as charity goes that are good, but I still think that there is something wrong with the way they portray figures to new consultants.

  • Blessed says:
    9 July 2009

    Eve,

    So what’s wrong with embracing a bit of hope? Is there really something so audacious about allowing yourself to dream about the possibilities? Is it so wrong to envision success in Mary Kay Cosmetics as an IBC? …to get excited about it? …to commit yourself to doing what it takes to succeed in this “business”?

    The endorphin rush alone excreted by a passionate belief in the possibilities has to be worth something, in and by itself… right? Regardless of the ultimate outcome, some might suggest the pleasure of pursuing the dream is, alone, well worth the risk. After all, successful people take risks, make personal investments of time and treasure, …isn’t that right?

    Is there something holding you back? Are you, perhaps for some reason, afraid of actually being good at selling this product, recruiting a team of dedicated entrepreneurs, sharing this God given gift with other women?

    Well, along with all the hopes, the dreams and the aspirations you’re being asked to embrace, let me suggest you hold on to an extremely valuable gift you seem to already have…

    Doubt.

    I suggest you not succumb to the Mary Kay Cosmetics “opportunity.” Rather, you should:

    -Read.
    -Investigate.
    -Learn.
    -Remain objective.
    -Employ discernment.
    -Send it back.
    -Run!

    I wish you well.

    Blessed

  • MKsoso says:
    9 July 2009

    I happen to be a consultant who is in this for the second time around. I def think this is not for everyone, but also the ruining half a million lives a year is a little extreme. Since you have to be “active” at the end of the year, I believe they don’t count them as active consultants, if that makes sense. I do know that if you go in and buy a big inventory, it’s a mistake! Products/promotions come and go every quarter, so you will have discontinued products etc on your shelf. I am a little smarter *being 4 years older, lol* and I just placed my order for me personally because I LOVE the makeup, not so much the skincare 100%, but if you are reading this and considering the opportunity, go for it, but just know it is a lot of work and you have to be a really brave person to hold facials and classes. I know from personal experience doing this for a few months again now that you don’t need to have all the products on hand, as long as you stay “active” you get the 50% off and most direct sales make you wait a couple days/weeks for the product and I would say that most woman would be ok with that, especially since they know you can’t afford to have thousands of $$ of product. It’s your decision and just stand firm in what you want and honestly, tell your director that you only want to do this for you and not interested in anything else. Like it’s been said in previous posts, they are too busy recruiting and inventory getting to waste a ton of time. AND if you don’t like your director, you can get a new one, fyi. :) Best of luck to anyone trying it out and sorry for all the bad experiences for others. MK is really “picked apart” all the time because they are such a HUGE name. Look at pampered chef stats, Lia Sophia, etc and check out their #’s. Probably somewhat comparable for people joining/recruting/quitting.

  • mike says:
    10 July 2009

    Hi, I have never been a recruit for MK, but my mom has she didn’t end up doing well at it. She worked hard and even spent money on buying product. But she still feels its a good opportunity for anyone that is good at sales. Not everyone has the sales capability, its a hard profession to be in. Yes you have to work hard, yes it is hard essentially when people like PINK TRUTH fight so hard at being negative. I think this website is helping destroy these women that are trying to be positive (which is extremely important in the sales atmosphere). Watch they probably won’t put this on the site.

  • Craig Hansen says:
    11 July 2009

    mike,

    You’re absolutely right. Tracy has deleted your comments and CENSORED you, denying you your right to FREE SPEECH.

    Tracy, I am shocked that you deleted mike’s comments above. You should be ashamed of yourself.

    BTW, mike, your mother is not alone. Those who fail at MK, and every other MLM, are in the vast, vast majority. Yes, a select few can prosper under the MLM system, but most won’t. The failure rate is much higher than real small business startups. Still think Tracy is wrong to oppose the exploitation of these women?

    Regards,
    Craig

  • Michelle says:
    13 July 2009

    Mary Kay isn’t inferior to drug store products. It’s inferior to M.A.C and other products of that caliber. My grandmother buys me mary kay. I don’t like the smell and I feel like it’s more aimed towards the older women, but hell. The make-up stays on and I love the brushes. I just wouldn’t buy this for myself.

  • KayT says:
    15 July 2009

    I feel sorry for those who have been brainwashed into believing selling MK cosmetics is anything other than another MLM scheme. Just because it makes a person “feel good about themselves” doesn’t make it any less so. Most people have to figure it out for themselves though. They don’t usually listen to the so-called naysayers. Oh well . . .

  • Sonny says:
    18 July 2009

    I think the most problematic line dished out at recruiting attempts is, ‘if you are willing to do whatever it takes.’

    Very broad line, if I may say so. Exactly what does that include? financial devastation? broken marriages (with the delightful ‘husband unawareness plan?’) soul-selling? unrecoverable time lost with children? lost friendships? unable to show your face in your neighborhood? stepping on anything and anyone as you climb/claw your way to sucksess?

    Somebody please map out for me exactly where the line is drawn.

    I hate that line. I will not do ‘whatever it takes’ for anything.

    I did not personally cross those lines. But the potential was there to do so, not to mention the ever so subtle ‘encouragement’ by uplines to do the deed and ask for forgiveness later. Spare me.

    I like MK products and buy them occasionally from liquidators.

    Too many cool-sounding cliches are thrown out at MLM meetings. They are meaningless in the real world.

  • Nohuma says:
    19 July 2009

    I am inordinately angry with scams such as mary kay hitting me and my mum. We are not very well off and cannot afford to loose money to schemes such as this.

    A sales representative managed to sell my mum £1000 of this ****, despite my criticism of their cheap and tacky make up I also mentioned that the logistics of how this make up would be sold has simply not been established.

    This company is a scam.

  • Susie says:
    23 July 2009

    Do you like the shampoo you use? Do you use the same brand over and over?? Why? Do you only buy Ford cars? Why? Do you have a favorite toothpaste that you use over and over? Why? Loyalty-you use what you like and what you prefer.
    Mary Kay is a great product that has brand loyal people using it. In my opinion, you should find a hobby or something else to invest your passion in-you are obviously missing the things in life that bring you joy and find bashing someone else’s joy enjoyable. (You realize you have wasted over a year posting on this site? How many minutes and hours have you wasted in negative thoughts?).
    I hate tomatoes but you don’t see me writing a column based on my hate to make everyone else in the world boycott them! This country is great because we can have our own opinions–but that doesn’t mean you need to bash other peoples opinions–sad, very sad and I feel bad for you for having such negativity in your life!
    It’s sad that you have so much unproductive time on your hands. No one is pushing anyone to purchase anything they don’t want, we sell it because we believe in it and it is a great opportunity to stay at home with our kids and work the hours we want helping women find the beauty in them selfs-and finding our own joy. You should try it-Get a life!

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    23 July 2009

    Well Susie… Is that the famous “Mary Kay positivity” we hear so much about? My you’re a kind person, and not judgmental in the least! LOL

    This is not about brand loyalty. I couldn’t care less if people want to waste their money on the marginal MK products. They can find much better stuff at Target for much less money, but how they spend their money isn’t my problem.

    The whole point of my public awareness campaign is to help women find out the real (hidden) facts about MK before they are recruited. I want to save them lots of time and lots of money.

    So you think I’ve wasted a year of my life on this? WRONG! I’ve spent the last FOUR years of my life working on this project, all simply as a public service. It is a very worthy hobby, and doesn’t take away from my very successful small business.

    Thanks for participating!

  • Bernice says:
    23 July 2009

    oye TRACY……….esa es tu mentalidad, pero en target tu no te puedes probar un producto, o una base. Ademas no recibes una presentacion personalizada de tu producto……. No escribas tanta basura de una compania que te da la oportunidad de hacer dinero. y Para entrar a esta compania lo unico que tienes que dar son 100 dolares que los mismos te gastas en target en porquerias que no necesitas…. y sino entiendes espanol……… buscate un traductor ………..

  • Amused says:
    23 July 2009

    Oh bless your heart! Sounds like a lot of you have had a hard time staying within your personal boundaries. I’d probably be safe to say that extends into all areas of your life. It all boils down to choice. Quit playing the victim game and make better choices. Ones that don’t make you feel like you were forced to by extra product, or recruit or die. Give me a break! Mary Kay is great and you can work the business anyway YOU CHOOSE to.

  • Blessed says:
    24 July 2009

    Susie

    I’m not crazy about tomatoes myself and I too am not promoting a boycott of vegetables. I’ll tell ya what, though, the day women are exploited for profit as part of a scheme to sell tomatoes through an MLM is the day I’ll begin to warn folks about tomatoes.

    In some instances the endorphins released naturally through positive thinking can blur the differences between optimism and naivete. One of the unfortunate characteristics of the Mary Kay MLM experience is the way positive thinking, as a personal attribute, is so readily abused. The Mary Kay “opportunity” is a wretched social disease spread like a parasite which feeds off its host.

    Those enveloped in the Mary Kay venture are either naive or knowingly promoting a product based pyramid scheme. If you’re the former please know there’s hope; just keep reading, learning and growing. My prayer is you emerge from this without too much injury. If you’re the latter, well, you simply disgust me. Look in the mirror tonight, reach deep inside, scrape up any sense of shame you may have left, and ask yourself:

    “Do I really want to continue my association with an organization which so effectively exploits women for profit”?

  • Curious says:
    24 July 2009

    I’m sincerely curious about your opinion on Arbonne. I have no connection to any of these companies, and did not read the entire year of blog, but wonder if your thoughts are the same on all home based businesses, or solely focused on cosmetics companies.

  • Curious says:
    24 July 2009

    …or just MK

  • Maureen says:
    24 July 2009

    Hi,
    I sold Mary Kay long ago, and was in fact looking for a recruiter when I happened to find this blog. I’m a make-up junkie – I’ve used everything from dior to avon, I also used to work for Shiseido (wonderful product) doing makeovers in malls. After all of that I still love my MK best! Best foundation, best skincare! I have very difficult skin (shiseido re-formulated and I can’t use it anymore) my derm doc says for 300.00 a pop I can get laser tx that can’t afford (need at least 3) but I can afford MK. Tracey you called it crap makeup, it is not. As far as the whole pink car thing, that was never my thing, and when I was involved in the past I was never pressured into buying more than I could afford. For as little as 300. you can start a business, and if you use it and love it (I’m still ‘selling’ to people but i have to tell them to go to e-bay to buy it) it pretty much sells itself. Tracey please don’t make comments about inferority of product, it shows your anger and ignorance.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    25 July 2009

    Arbonne and MK are not a “business.” They are multi-level marketing, which is a fancy name for a recruiting scheme. I have not found an MLM whihc is respectable.

  • Lori Tikka says:
    27 July 2009

    I am very sorry to hear your unhappiness with Mary Kay. I have used the product for over 30 years and have been a consultant for years. I find that Mary Kay offers woman a chance to expand not only themselves, but to build a business to be proud of. So many times it is better to keep our thoughts to ourselves. Possibly you have hear that it if is not nice, keep it to yourself. Sometimes bad mouthing others only makes you look bad.

  • Blessed says:
    27 July 2009

    Good evening Lori.

    I don’t refer to it as “bad mouthing others.” Rather, I believe it is more accurately referred to as “sharing the truth with innocent bystanders.” You know, those women standing in the churn line about to enter the Mary Kay Cosmetics grinding machine. If you let your mind wonder for a moment it’s not difficult to hear the sound of these excited, sharp looking queens of whatever as they’re sucked through the MK MLM grinding machine. Think of that spine-tingling noise made by the Asplundh Tree Trimming Company as they run trees through their gas powered stump grinders. To add authenticity I guess you’d have to add the sound of groups of women screaming… No, wait, the screaming part comes when they realize they can’t sell all the drek frontloaded upon them and realize the amount they’ve been manipulated into charging on credit cards. Yea, now there’s a truly spine-tingling noise.

    WWWOOOOAAAA!

  • Paula says:
    31 July 2009

    First, I must say I do not sell and have not ever sold MK products; however, I am a very loyal customer. I have used MK for over 10 years. I have friends and family members in the business, and they have had nothing but positive things to say about their experiences. I have been to meetings, parties, etc. It is always a lot of fun. I think it’s great for women who are “cut out” for this type of business. This is not for everyone. Yes, I do believe it’s an MLM, but at least they sell products. Pyramid schemes are pyramid schemes because their focus is on recruiting and not products or services. In fact on the Securities and Exchange Commission website it says that “In the classic “pyramid” scheme, participants attempt to make money solely by recruiting new participants into the program.” MK focuses on their products, recruiting is desired but not required to make money. If you’ve ever noticed MK doesn’t do much commercial advertising, it is done through the consultants; therefore, recruiting is essential to the growth of the company. MK is a top-selling skin care line, not some fly-by-night pyramid scheme. If you believe in the product and want to sell it, by all means SELL IT! Don’t get me wrong, I don’t agree with pressure tactics toward recruiting, but most people have the ability to say “no” and to take time to think the opportunity through before succumbing to any pressure.

  • Katie says:
    18 August 2009

    I just happened across this blog while searching for a Mary Kay site. I was formally a consultant for MaryKay and would like to share my experience. I was recruited by a friend who was a consultant and thought it would be fun to sell a product I already use. Little did I know the push my recruiter and her director would give me to invest big chunks of money on inventory. It’s a great product but their recruiting tactics are a bit shady.

  • John says:
    22 August 2009

    This article is absolutely stupid!!! If you get into any business and dont work, it wont pay you. Try and start a business on $100. I have 3 girlfriends who are in Mary Kay they own no inventory it is all sold out of corporate stock. They all do this together and have a blast doing it. They make about $500 a month working about 12 Hours. Not huge money but they love it. Your article is a joke.

  • Faith E says:
    22 August 2009

    I am a consultant and no one ever forced me to buy 4800.00 worth of anything. I am willing to read anything or listen to anything but when it is all lies then it just does not sit well with me. Let’s be truthful please. Even if you bought the 4800.00 (full store) of products and you turn around and do not want to be a part of it anymore, MaryKat refunds you 90% of the value. If you were trying to be honest like you said then you should have included that in your write up.

    If you are the kind of person that cannot push yourself to get things done then MaryKay might not be for you. It could be why people fail at it. If you think you will come in and not do the work and buy a mansion in a year then you came in with the wrong attitude. I hate lies and your write up just irritates me.

    My director has a masters degree and I have a bachelors and until February this year was a stock broker. So do not try to give the impression that we are just a bunch of helpless women that MaryKay is preying on. I have been around long enough to know when I am being swindled. I looked at what I was going to get from this not what Mary Kay was going to get from me.

    If you really want to help people then tell the truth.

  • Junior says:
    22 August 2009

    As a consultant you can never make money, do you know of any business that stocks up on invertory even though they are not selling product.
    How can the average person become a business person without training?
    They want you to become a star, which means you have to spend $600 every month, I have been to these meetings, the average person sells less than $200 a week.
    Mary Kay’s sales are based on how much product they sell to consultants not to customers, does Mcdonalds base their sales on product sold to the franchise or to the customer? The average consultant has inventory in their homes, no one knows what MK is selling to customers.
    This is just another instance of people taking advantage of people that are poor and not very educated. How many of these consultants know how much they are making in profit?

  • Blessed says:
    23 August 2009

    Junior,

    I don’t believe Mary Kay Corporation and its minions are merely, as you say, “…taking advantage of people that are poor and not very educated.” There are multitudes of very well educated, very intelligent women who’ve been injured through participation in the Mary Kay Cosmetics MLM. The idea that only stupid or unrefined women get exploited by this nightmare is a purposely perpetuated misnomer; it’s right up there with the “…they failed in Mary Kay because they’re just lazy” stuff. Not true.

    This confidence scam is masterful at exploiting women for profit, any women. Yea, as I’ve suggested in the past, the Mary Kay Corporation bumper stickers which now read:

    “Mary Kay Cosmetics
    Enriching Women’s Lives”

    Should more accurately read:

    “Mary Kay Cosmetics
    When it Comes to Exploitation of Women for Profit,
    We’re Second Only to Pornography”

    Blessed

  • john says:
    1 September 2009

    Everything I have seen involving MK has been great.

  • lulu says:
    6 September 2009

    Tracy, if you would just state once more on this site I am pretty sure half of these conversations and name calling would not have to have taken place. If you stand behind your website pinktruth whatever then you should know your information well enough to answer people’s questions. it seems to me that the “99% of all women in Mary Kay lose money” statement seems to be questioned in most of these comments. so just give them the answers they are trying to get. i personally love Mary Kay products. I use them all the time and I find no fault in them. I am not a consultant but i trust the company and the people that work for it. Mary Kay was a great lady and she has started a great business. I and lots of other people stand behind that and we will until you give the proof you are demanding from everyone else that is defending Mary Kay.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    6 September 2009

    “Lulu” – I’ve linked to the proof over and over in this thread. Scroll through and have a look. It’s all here for your viewing pleasure. And everything is on Pink Truth multiple times as well. I’ve stated the facts and pointed to the proof often enough on both sites.

  • lulu says:
    8 September 2009

    just because you have it linked doesn’t mean it is accessible. i just tried and it didn’t go through so it might not hurt.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    8 September 2009

    All of the links work for me!

  • Amanda says:
    20 September 2009

    Okay heres the truth about the world. Its all a recruting sceme. One way or another you re always trying to get to the executive level and trying to get people under you. You spend lots of money going to any job. Clothes, cars, food, and some therapy. Mary Kay is just another business and if it was a bad one it would have gone under long ago. Some Mary Kay consultants will admit it wasnt all that good when they started but business improves like any other business out there. Aompare it to the automotive industry. They make cars to sell you cars. They make better cars to sell you CARS. Oh my god what a consept. Do you spend money to get a job in the automotive field? Yes! Doesnt matter where the money goes whether its on steel toe boots, lunch box, ect. or a demonstration kit to sell women and men products for the health of their skin. Get with the program its all a sceme to make money and spend money. Its what makes the world go round.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    21 September 2009

    Sadly, people in MLMs spends hundreds (actually, usually thousands) to participate. That’s hardly the same thing as buying steel toed shoes or a lunchbox.

    And I suppose the corporate world does “recruit” but not for your own job. If you’re the manager, you recruit other employees to do different work than you do. In MLM, it’s about recruiting someone who has the exact same products and services for sale to the exact same customers.

    Furthermore…. MLM doesn’t really exist to sell a product or service to an actual end-user. That’s been established over and over. Their real purpose is to sell the “opportunity” to potential new recruits. The product itself is just the thing that is supposed to make the “opportunity” look like legitimate.

  • What??? says:
    21 September 2009

    Talk about women being duped…it sounds like women are being convinced here that MK invented evil. People can be seduced. Some to believe lies and some to lie. MK didn’t create that. It’s a beautiful thing to find a consultant who has been doing it for a while and knows her stuff. Unfortunately that’s overshadowed by the sales tactics of a “few”, which is probably motivated by some change in company policy…as well as our economy.
    The company seems like it was originally sculpted in such a way that a woman wouldn’t have to sink to the level of a man (by encouraging the golden rule) in order to make a living. Very few americans have values other than greed now anyway, so joining MK isn’t going to change that. If a greedy person thinks they can join MK and make a killing, a greedy person will think that about (insert company here). The problem is greed. The problem could also be ignorance (lack of knowledge). I am glad MK consultants, directors, etc. have a place to tell their experiences both good and bad.
    I also realise there are some women who claim to be looking out for women’s well being, but they don’t sound any different then men. Short on facts, long on bullying . I think maybe the real goal here is to eliminate any alternative to the major department store cosmetics by emotionally abusing women by telling them if they sell or heaven forbid actually use MK, oh I don’t know, because they have sensitive skin and need fragrance free products, they are STUPID. If enough women are convinced of how stUpid they are to USE the stuff then maybe it will go away and we will all be left without this skincare as an alternative to the common department store stuff which contains fragrance and soap and SLS etc. I am sensitive to soap and fragrance. What should I do then Tracy? Should the world be made a much better place and all evil in the world be eliminated by the removal of the evil empire of MK, what would those of us who actually use the products do? I know, it’s not your point or your problem. MK is evil. Rah rah rah. What do you win if you get more people on “your side?” Dermatitis? Women please don’t believe the hype. You can join MK to get products at a discount for yourself and family/friends.

  • What??? says:
    21 September 2009

    One more thing. When I say I am sensitive, I don’t mean I get a little irritation or redness occasionally by soap or fragrance. I mean inflammation bad enough to cause my face, neck and body to swell. The swelling doesn’t leave unless the offending product is removed from my skin. Synthetic fragrance in products stops me from smelling ANYthing. Most skincare (even at Target for less than MK) is going to have fragrance or soap or SLS. Even Cetaphil has SLS. I’ve tried very expensive skincare brands as well as drugstore. MK works for me. I am not the only one. If you really have a problem with the marketing tactics, perhaps you should put your vast MLM knowledge to work inventing a different plan (original ideals please) and sell it to MK. Help women. All of us. Even the sensitive skinned ones. Don’t try to eliminate what we need, help us out with a better direct distribution plan. (Direct distribution offers less compromise in the product.) They only have to please the people that actually use the product. (No bowing down to the common vat.)

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    21 September 2009

    The Mary Kay product simply is not that good. And it is certainly not fragrance free. There are literally thousands of products on the market. Mary Kay is not your only alternative.

    But if someone DOES want MK products, they’re much better off getting them from eBay than signing up to be a consultant. MK requires minimum purchases, and eBay does not. The prices on eBay are many times even better than you’ll get buying wholesale from MK anyway.

  • karen says:
    5 October 2009

    Tracy you are correct about 1 % of the time the rest of us 99% consultants are doing Mary Kay the right way. We are building businesess. This wonderful company has allowed me to stay home with my children, not having to put them in day care while I worked. I have received 12 FREEE cars and 15 diamond rings. I have NEVER forced people to buy ANYTHING! I love the products and would continue to use them even if I wasn’t associated with the company! So I really think you need to get the chip off your shoulder and put all your negative energy into something positive in your life!

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 October 2009

    Newsflash Karen – You’re either “at home with your children” or you’re working. You can’t do both at the same time, and I’m tired of people like you perpetuating these lies. You certainly aren’t “at home with your children” when you’re out stalking new victims, going to unit meetings, and holding classes. You certainly aren’t “at home with your children” when you’re calling women to nag them about booking a class or signing up to be a consultant.

    Those cars weren’t free, and those diamonds were of poor quality. Sure, you had the use of a car. And to get it you had to put hundreds of women in debt by encouraging them to order products they couldn’t sell and add to their ever-growing inventory. How do you sleep at night knowing you took food out of their children’s mouths?

    I find my crusade to get out the truth about Mary Kay to be very positive and uplifting. I have literally had thousands of women thank me for my efforts. And many millions of women have visited pinktruth.com and had their eyes opened. That is a very worthy pursuit, and one to which I will continue to devote my time.

  • Get a life says:
    7 October 2009

    Tracy,
    Get a life, start a hobby, help save the whales, do something constructive with your time. The problem with people like you is that you want to blame everyone else for poor choices made. If a consultant offers a job opportunity it’s up to the individual to make that decision. If someone can’t afford the initial kit or gets talked into buying more than they can afford, shame on them. YOU feel the product is inferior, that’s your opinion. I am not a consultant but I do like the skin care and I have used top of the line products. Again this is MY choice, no MK consultant put a gun to my head. It’s truly a shame someone with the resolve and education you have doesn’t put your energy to something important like feeding the hungry, finding homes for the homeless, or help to stop domestic abuse. Bring MK down is far more important than helping a child in need.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    7 October 2009

    When did I say I’m trying to “bring MK down”? I’m simply providing a public service to women considering MK. I think it’s important for them to have the WHOLE story on MK before they start up. Women are losing millions of dollars each year to MK. I love helping to reduce that waste of money. :)

  • Been There says:
    7 October 2009

    I became a consultant in MK to help out a friend. I really tried to make it work. I drove 100 miles round trip 1-3 times weekly for meetings and training. I did refuse to buy $3600 worth of product that my director wanted me to. I wore the clothes, make up, nylons, and heels. I walked the walk and talked the talk. I told them that I would only sell to consumers and not recruit. They tried for 6 months and when I refused I cannot tell you how many times I was admonished for not being a team player. For being selfish and not helping others become successful. I returned what I could and thanked my lucky stars that I came away only losing a couple hundred instead of the thousands that many do. I could not convince my directors that if I could not sell $500 worth of product that there was no way I could sell $5000 worth.

  • A Question says:
    8 October 2009

    Are there a significant number of women who buy a career from MK? In other words, they don’t really need the extra income, they are in it for the appearance of a legitimate career, perceived status and/or self justification. I can’t fathom any other reason for so many of these women to defend this company. They sure as heck aren’t making (net) money. Only a secondary earner could afford to do this “for a living”.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    8 October 2009

    I would say no. I bet almost everyone on this thread defending MK has lost money with it, or if they’re super lucky, they’ve made $5 an hour or less. They’re so under the spell of a company that pretends to help women, that they’re willing to defend it even though they haven’t gotten any tangible benefits.

    I’ve dissected the numbers many times at pinktruth.com, and even the so-called big sellers of the product are making less than $10,000 a year for full-time efforts. And those are the TOP people… and those numbers are assuming they sell all the products that they order. They probably do NOT sell everything they order, making their real income even less than the $10,000.

  • A Question says:
    8 October 2009

    The principal breadwinner of a family couldn’t afford to stick it out. I can’t imagine MK has too many single moms who last more than a very short time. They just couldn’t afford it, regardless of any brainwashing. That’s what leads me to my hypothesis.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    8 October 2009

    Well there ARE plenty of women who need the income from MK, but don’t get it, and continue to purchase their tenure. They typically secretly run up credit card bills and/or stop paying regular household bills to finance this activity. I can’t tell you how often I’ve heard of this. It’s not an isolated instance or two.

  • Alexa says:
    10 October 2009

    I sold MKC back in 1995-’96 before the explosion of internet shopping had begun. I did establish some loyal customers who bought only from me because they liked my personality or service. I have noticed that people who appear to be expremely extraverted, high energy and who are able to embrace a positive attitude the majority of the time seem to be the ones who succeed at MKC. It also does not seem to hurt to be a religious person (which I am not).
    I had begun MKC because I had been sexually harassed by the clinical director in my first social work position after I had completed graduate school. This left me devastated. I attempted to find an attorney to help me without success. I found myself isolated and black-listed due to the well-connectedness of this person and the double-standards our society has towards women. (I’d like to see a woman bounce back from things like David Letterman has done…and still maintain such high popularity….)
    I needed to get back into the workforce. I developed confidence in myself with MKC and my director was a lovely, caring person who did much to help me to re-build my self-esteem, confidence and believe in me again. I was not pressured to buy what I did. I am not a natural extravert and was not great at MKC but I did see other women succeed who stuck with it and who were more outgoing on a consistent basis. Working with MKC helped me to establish my reputation again and get back into the workforce in my field. My experience with MKC served as a “stepping-stone”; it was a small investment to pay for what it provided to me professionally and personally at the time.
    I am not disputing what you write about pyramid schemes. However, my experience proved to be mutually beneficial.

  • Bizzywoot says:
    15 October 2009

    Yo girl who said your mom was a joke. You are right. She is a joke because she could have sold the product back to MK. Dude I’m 20 and sure I may not know as much as I should. I do know that I have an aunt who is in the Biz and a co-worker who does it to make a little extra. Don’t go spending your money on every opportunity, class, or w/e… If you are smart you can make money from this. If you jump at it w/o help then you will only fail. DUH Talk to a “real” director who believes in the product, spend a little extra for some classes that will help you be successful, and get out there! Make calls and set up facial appointments. Dude I just starts and IM DOING FANTASTIC! so if you are like 45 and didn’t do well.. IN YOUR FACE! I’m 20 and I went and made sure I got what I needed to know. Don’t Rag on MK cuz you suck. The products are great and you will be successful if you are smart. OH and once again…. if you happen to be a quitter and have product. Dont be a loser like that girls mom. SELL YOUR PRODUCT BACK. See you on the flip slide crazy! XD

  • Momo says:
    16 October 2009

    I agree with both sides here. MK women are generally pushy, as I have been “called” (nagged) by all the leaders to sign up for MK since I started buying from my consultant about two years ago. It didn’t matter how many times I said, “No, I don’t have time,” Or, “No, I don’t want to,” I was still pressured to start selling at least once a week. I have just signed up, not because I was pressured (I can resist pressure as long as necessary), but because I realized I would save a lot of money by being a consultant. I love the products, and the sign up is half price right now, so for me it only makes sense. Now, of course the high inventory was pushed on me (to those of you who don’t believe this happens, I hear it every time I go to the center and get a facial and hear about the opportunity from the National Sells Director and the other consultants). But, being in control of myself, I am not signing up for that. Please, don’t blame MK because women don’t know how to be responsible with money. OF course, MK people, don’t pretend that the high inventory start up is not COMMONLY espoused as the BEST way to go (which may be true for some and not true for others). Also, MK people, you ARE usually too “relentless.” Please give everyone a break if they say no. MK is like a shovel, it is neither inherently evil nor good – it is simply a tool that can be used in different ways. MK is NOT for everyone. If you are on the verge of starving, get a job making dependable amounts of money (this should be obvious). Here is a lesson that most people seem to need to learn: If you make a bad investment, don’t blame anyone but yourself. Also, realize that what is a bad investment for you, might not be for someone else.

    Tracy: Please try to listen with an open mind. You do not seem willing to listen to facts, only what you already believe. This is no way to live, as it seriously hampers you ability to intake truth. I do not mean you are wrong, just that you do not seem willing to even consider what the other side is saying. (Of course, some of the MK ladies are this way also) You don’t have to accept anything the other side says, just make that choice after honestly considering what they say and then seeing if there is truth to it. I have had to do this with some pretty big things, and am glad that I did.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    16 October 2009

    I’ve listened to the Mary Kay garbage for over 10 years now. No amount of “listening” is going to change the fact that 99% of women who get involved with MK lose money. That’s too high of a failure rate to make this company worthwhile for anyone to try. So yes, I’ve been considering the “other side” for 10 years now… and it’s a side filled with lies guaranteed to help women lose money while a tiny handful at the top of the pyramid profit.

  • Evangeline says:
    27 October 2009

    This is Pathetic. Fighting and complaining about whether Mary Kay is good or bad. Its their decision, their money. Let them learn the hard way if that is really how you feel about it all.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    27 October 2009

    Well then, using that logic, I suppose we should say to hell with the victims of someone like Bernie Madoff, right? I mean all Bernie did was lie a little. And all MK consultants do when they recruit is lie a little. Those Madoff clients weren’t victims. They just learned the hard way. Same as you’re suggesting we should do with Mary Kay.

    Sorry, but I don’t see it your way. I’ve been fighting the good fight to educate women about Mary Kay for nearly 5 years now. And I’m going to continue to do it. We may not be able to stop a company like this from misleading women and legally stealing the money out of their wallets, but we sure as heck can keep telling everyone we know about this legalized con. Education is our friend. The more women who know, the more who will avoid the pink trap.

  • Blessed says:
    28 October 2009

    It is a trap, an ingenious con. Built into the con is the MLM nurtured feelings of failure. Thus, those who try to work their “business” correctly too often end up, ultimately, getting out of this cult-like organization after experiencing a loss which the shills around them knew all along was on the horizon. These “failures” are largely not failures at all. Their “failures” were, rather, predictable and expected byproducts of the MK MLM churn process. Similar to the way one might admire the finesse employed by an accomplished racketeer, you’ve got to admire how the MK MLM is able to often (very often) successfully promulgate the falsehood which states their MLM victims were somehow not good enough or were in some other way a “failure.”

    If a piece of wood goes through a stump grinder and ends up a pile of wood chips, it seems illogical to suggest the outcome was somehow caused by the inadequacy of the wood. In reality, most any wood that goes through the chipper will come out ripped up at the other end. It’s the way the wood chipper was designed to work! The MK MLM is like a wood chipper churning women; it operates as designed. To continue its viability, it must have a continuous flow of women being churned through it.

    The Mary Kay Cosmetics MLM is comprised of participants who are either naive or complicit. All of us are naive in some form or fashion. We all can and occasionally do make mistakes because of a lack of information or poor judgment, etc. The difference in people becomes apparent when they transition from being a naive woman who was conned into becoming an IBC, to an IBC who now recognizes the churn nature of the MLM but for self interests continues to recruit victims for the pyramid or otherwise supports the MK MLM and its minions as they spread the scam.

    If you’re reading this and you’re an IBC, ask yourself which are you? Naive or complicit?

  • Sheila K says:
    6 November 2009

    My 10+ year experience with Mary Kay has been purchasing very good products at much less than department store prices, and never once being asked, much less pressured, to become a consultant. The lady I buy from works hard at the business – delivers if you need it and provides little gifts – and has a separate room in her house for her work. She’s just earned her 3rd car. She works it like any other serious business-person.

    I personally know several people who have become “consultants” with no intention of making a living, but want to be able to pay the lower price and provide products for family members. That may account for some of the failures. But it would also be worth remembering that most small businesses fail, generally within the first three years.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    6 November 2009

    Sheila – Unfortunately, MLMs try to use the “they don’t want to make a profit anyway” excuse to explain why so many lose money, but that’s a fabrication. Sure, there are some in this boat, but not so many. The fact is that the failure rate in MLM is far, far higher than in any legitimate business. Why? Because that’s how MLMs are set up. 99% must fail, but the owners and executives of companies still rake in the money.

  • The Swindler's Mind says:
    6 November 2009

    Sheila K said: “But it would also be worth remembering that most small businesses fail, generally within the first three years.”

    What is more important to remember is that MLM is the only business model that is designed so that the top few percent (the maggots) feed off of the rotting corpses of the bottom 90 plus percent. The maggots must have the corpses to survive. The grand prize for moving up from corpse is to be a maggot.

  • Leigh says:
    6 November 2009

    My best friend is the daughter of a NSD. I have seen this woman work her was from making pennies to nmillions through GOD and the MK vision. I am a BC, however I do not make it a priority to recruit. I used to hate Mary Kay until I took off my judgemental eyes and saw that many women need someone to root for them even if they just want to be a BC for the discount. I have met women who pressure and women I wouldn’t want to eat dinner with again, however I have met amazing women who influence my life daily.
    There are pros and cons to ANY buisness you want to do. Good and bad in everything and everyone has their own opinion… thoes who trash MK aren’t with happy with themselves… I used to get irritate because I didn’t do as well as I wanted… I realized my heart wasn’t in it and that is why I wasn’t doing better… I was HONEST with myself sounds like others need to aswell…..

    STOP being so bitter…
    Look to GOD for the things you need. It may be MAry
    Kay it may not be…

    I wanted the MK vision to be mine, the I realized it wasn’t for me. I love the products and the fun things I see when I go. I do dislike the women who are fake but the women who aren’t have been my best friends for year… There is not pink fog …. just thoes who try something and love what they do… it’s sad that thoes who love what they do and do it right and honest are trashed because of women who don’t follow what Gos sets before them…

    God Bless

  • Caressat says:
    16 November 2009

    Tracey,
    Thank you. I almost signed up. You saved me.

  • Dalena says:
    18 November 2009

    This report is rediculous. The first false hood is the implication that because someone quits Mary Kay their life is destroyed. In order to asume this is a correct statement we must all agree on the term Destroy. Another point to consider is that these woman are independant. They do not have top keep selling. They are not under any contract saying they have to buy anything. That is thir choice. Poor choices is the desroying facter. Creadit Cards are useful to those who have wisdom and use them correctly. In that same way Mary Kay is useful to those who it works for. This article savors of bitterness and purhaps envy. Please stop ripping other people and companies apart just because you have problems.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    18 November 2009

    On the contrary, Delena, quitting Mary Kay does NOT ruin anyone’s life. It in fact ENHANCES their lives. I encourage everyone to quit MK. It is very positive.

    This article is focusing on the financial devastation that MK brings to families. Almost everyone loses money in MK, and almost all of them got into MK hoping to make money. They come out poorer than they went in, and that is the problem.

  • you wouldn't know. says:
    18 November 2009

    tracey………australia is one of the laziest countries in the world don’t you know that. women have no hope. when they do try, people like you steal there dreams. how’s it feel to be a lonely dream stealer and happiness crusher. i bet this is all you do all day make sure that no one in the world can better them selves. you failed by the sounds of it and with that in mind you didn’t gain any self improvment skills that mary kay offers. your a negative failure and you sound like a self sentered person who relise on facts and figures rather than real facts. mary kay works if you work. it’s your business so it’s your responsability and you are responsable for the failure of your business. take responsability for your actions… rather than waking yourself feel good by putting women down all the time.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    18 November 2009

    LOL – A dream stealer and a failure. Like I’ve never heard either of those before! Thanks for you insights!

  • lOISE says:
    5 December 2009

    I have used the products and they have worked perfectly for my face and I thank God for the lady who brought it into my life. At the end of the day I guess the selling is not for all as such one should think carefully before they decide to sell, and like any other product it is not for all.

    This blog I think gives imbalanced views of MaryKay, balance it out and it will probably be more beneficial. Other cosmetic comanies are making much much more and are sure as hell not sharing it with anyone but those who can afford to be a shareholder, which from experience is not all.

    KR

  • Sydney says:
    7 December 2009

    I am so sorry to hear your need to atttack a business like any other business that has a product to sell. Like anything we buy or jobs we take – no one is twisting arms and aren’t you more so attacking the female that have entered into something they aren’t capable of doing. I sold Mary Kay during my daughter’s teen years as a single along with a full time job and it kept food on the table and also without much support from a wealthy ex-husband due to a judge making a high dollar didn’t do his job – maybe you should take your attacks were it can make a difference to many females in a positive way. Also, after like most female I attempted to try new cosmetics and only found it to destroy my skin and back to Mary Kay with compliments again on my complexion which taken care of with very little of make-up but more so skin care. P.S. Apparently you don’t do your research, as Mary Kay is one of the most inexpensive make-up to buy

  • SHEILA says:
    9 December 2009

    I TRIED SELLING MARY KAY IN THE 90’S. I AGREE WITH YOU THE PRODUCTS ARE OVER PRICED. YOU CAN GO GET MAKE UP AT THE DEPARTMENT STORES OR AT WALMART THAT DOES JUST AS WELL AND COSTS 1/2 OF WHAT YOU HAVE TO PAY FOR MARY KAY COSMETICS. THE EYE SHADOW IS CRUMBLY AND FLAKES TOO MUCH WHEN YOU ARE TRYING TO PUT IT ON. THE LADY WHO RECRUITS YOU WILL TELL YOU THAT THIS IS SO IT WILL BE USED UP QUICKER AND PEOPLE WILL HAVE TO BUY MORE FROM YOU. ALSO THE BLUSH IS THE SAME WAY. SO THEN YOU ACTUALLY END UP SPENDING 3 TO 4 TIMES FOR MARY KAY MAKE UP THAN WHAT YOU WOULD PAY AT THE STORE. THEN THERE IS THE PESTY RECRUITOR WHO JUST CONSTANTLY IS CALLING AND WANTING YOU TO BUY MAKE UP AND PERSONALLY I JUST DON’T WON’T TO BE BOTHERED BY HER. IT’S CHEAPER AT THE STORES AND YOU AREN’T ANNOYED BY SOMEONE TRYING TO GET A QUICK BUCK OFF OF YOU. I KNOW THERE ARE WOMEN WHO ARE SUCCESSFUL AT IT. MY LUCK WAS I PAID APPROXIMATELY $4,000 FOR COMPLETE INVENTORY SO I WOULD HAVE IT AVAILABLE WHEN I CAME ACROSS SOMEONE WHO WANTED TO BUY THE PRODUCT. MY EXPERIENCE WAS EVERYONE I CAME IN CONTACT WITH HAD EITHER A MOTHER, COUSIN, AUNT, GOOD FRIEND, OR SISTER SELLING IT. THE COMPANY IS TOO SATURATED AND IT IS HARD TO SELL. I HAD BORROWED THE MONEY FROM THE BANK TO BUY THE PRODUCTS AND I JUST HAD SUCH ROTTEN LUCK, I SENT IT BACK TO GET MY MONEY BACK IN WHICH I DIDN’T GET THE WHOLE REFUND AND THEN WAS STILL STUCK PAYING A MONTHLY BANK NOTE FOR THE LOAN I OWED. BUT I HAD LISTENED TO MY RECRUITOR WHO JUST MADE IT LOOK LIKE I WAS GOING TO MAKE THOUSANDS AND WOULD HAVE THAT NOTE PAID OFF IN NO TIME FLAT. WELL, IT MAY WORK FOR SOME BUT IT DIDN’T WORK FOR ME.

  • Doo Dilly says:
    10 December 2009

    If you read blogs or boards about MLM’s, the defenders spout the exact same several diatribes, whether its Pre-Paid Legal, MK, Herbalife, Usana, etc. There is the kindly religious themed poster that wishes you well or prays for you; The calm reasoner who quotes numbers and success gleamed from testimonials or company disinformation, and allows that it’s not for “everyone”; and the angry attack soldier who spews venom. Often the words chosen are identical from MLM to MLM–there must be at least 2 books that are required reading for all: How to recruit (sell) and make a fortune, and how to defend against criticism.

    I agree that MLM’s successfully recruit people from all socioeconomic and educational backgrounds, as do religious cults. But the adverse affect to survivors is more pronounced for people with lesser means. And to whoever rants against my comparison to a cult, you will probably prove my point with your rebuttal. Folks who like the company they work for may tell you it’s a great place to be, but will not spend hours trying to convince you to come aboard.

    As a direct result of the indoctrination tactics well documented here and elsewhere, many survivors are too embarrassed or ashamed to speak up.

    Other MLM’s recruit both genders; MK, because of the product, solicits primarily (or exclusively?) women.

    It saddens me that MLM’s are “legal” pyramid schemes, and as such continue to operate. It amazes me that nary a one sells a great product–it might be okay and usable, but nothing to write home about. Oh wait–if it was a great product, then it would be sold by a traditional company who hires a finite number of “worker bees for their J.O.B.’s”. (The quoted phrase is from both MLM handbooks: recruiting and defending)

  • Miss Pink says:
    11 December 2009

    Honey,
    You are trully wasting time. You sound like a vegan trying to convert and convince everyone to stop buying and eating meat. IT’S NOT GOING TO HAPPEN. You can not stop people from doing what they love and do nor from buying it either. There is a reason why it is called NETWORK MARKETING this is how these companies progress and make money. That is the way how all companies work, do you honestly think corporate america is any much different??? THINK ABOUT IT!! You could at least put yourself in the shoes of someone who started with nothing and has made themselves a something after beginning a network marketing business, they are amazing stories. alas I have nothing more to say every human being is entitled to their opinion, and thank you to those who are still positve minded and are loyal to Mary Kay.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    11 December 2009

    I have no intention of “stopping” anyone from doing anything. I’m simply offering information on Mary Kay to anyone researching the company and the “opportunity.” Whatever they do with that information is completely up to them.

  • Andrea says:
    16 December 2009

    I would just like to say that I am a mk consultant this is my second month. I absolutley love it my friend got me going. We go to seminars and my sales have been fairley good since i started but I have 4 kids and I work full time. That was expected when I started it’s pretty much for extra money and some girl time which I need. I use all the products myself and absolutley love it. You know, how would you really know what the product is worth while you say its over priced, thats suggested retail so us “consultants” can make money too.. Thats the whole point. Maybe instead of looking into all the negatives you should check out the positives. I think it’s a good business for women or men You got to set your mind to it if you really want to do it otherwise you will fail.

  • Sue says:
    16 December 2009

    Ladies, ladies, please approach this “opportunity” like an accountant. The numbers do NOT add up – you will NOT make executive income. Tracy is spot on!

  • Kim says:
    17 December 2009

    Andrea, I’m with you on this. I am also a MK consultant. A friend of mine got me into it as well, we have our girl time, it’s fun and doesn’t stress us out. I’ve used MK products for many yrs as I can not use the cheap stuff without my face breaking out and scaring. MK products are wonderful I try everything so that I can give my customers a clear picture of what they are getting. All of my customers have seen first hand what other products do to my skin, so when it comes down to it they know that I’m not running a scam. MK is nothing but positive for me! And to the guy that speaks of brainwashed husbands…… my husband supports me in whatever I do 100%! As well as I support him in everything he does 100%! My marriage is a partnership. It is a wonderful feeling when you help a find a product that helps solve a problem that someone is unhappy with about theirself.

  • Doo Dilly says:
    18 December 2009

    Drinking the Pink Kool-Aid: ” to become a firm believer in something, to accept an argument or philosophy wholeheartedly or blindly.”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Drinking_the_Kool-Aid

  • SLK says:
    29 December 2009

    I used to be a Mary Kay consultant. Some of what Tracy includes in her article seem biased, almost like she had a bad experience being a consultant, but I do agree with some of her opinions. I think that the way they set it up is sort of a sham. You really do go into it thinking you are going to make a great sum of money by the way they talk it up. They make it sound so easy. They really pressure you into joining and make you feel bad if you don’t. The meetings felt sort of cult-like and I remember getting bashed because I didn’t wear a skirt and nylons to a meeting. I think that the makeup is mediocre (MAC and Estee Lauder are much higher in quality, in my opinion) for how high it is priced. It’s obvious I’m one of those people who didn’t have a great experience with it, but I think it’s great if it’s something you want to do and you are succeeding at it. I agree that it’s a pretty high turnover rate, but what that probably means is that a majority of those who are still with Mary Kay are the veterans. As long as their consultant rate isn’t going down year after year, they might be okay (for now).

  • VJC says:
    29 December 2009

    I am shocked at your synopsis of MK products. I have a very good friend who worked her way up to a directorship in the Mary Kay family after finishing college and was with them for over 15 yrs. She had nothing but a positive experience and spoke highly of theirbusiness and the fairness. While it is important for them to recruit, it is never “shoved” in anyone’s face! Your negativity makes one wonder what made you turn so sour!
    I like their products, while I continue to use others on the market, there are some products MK offers that serve the purpose well. Pooey to you! I am a former model and skin care is very important to me. I think MK offers wonderful possibilities to those who embrace it.

  • Karen M says:
    2 January 2010

    Tracy, really? Mary Kay only? Please also go after Avon, Longaberger, Pampered Chef, PartyLite, LiaSofia and all the other “home based” businesses. Do you really think Mary Kay is the only one with pushy consultants who try to get others into their business and want their consultants to have a certain amount of product? From a consumer’s point of view, they seem all the same to me. I’ve been to all kinds of parties. They are all about women having a semi-legit reason to get together and gossip and an opportunity to lay seige to some unsuspecting patsy. Come on, in America, we should all realize it is “buyer beware”, whether it is stocks, insurance, housewares or cosmetics. That you have singled out this company tells me that you have a personal ax to grind with Mary Kay. People who have a personal issue to work out are seldom un-biased. I’m not saying that everything any of these companies’ reps do is on the up and up, but, I really doubt your motives are any more altruistic than theirs. How many books have you sold?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    2 January 2010

    Karen – I don’t write about Mary Kay to sell books. The readers of my books are not interested in Mary Kay or any company like it. So yes, my motives in discussing MK are altruistic. I have spent hundreds of hours of my time and thousands of dollars educating consumers about MK. There is nothing in it for me except the satisfaction that I am providing information that will help many more women say no to this disgusting company.

    I dislike all MLM companies, including the ones you mentioned. Normally, I would say buyer beware, but the MLM companies do business a little bit different. They sell and recruit with lies. Even cautious people who ask a lot of questions can be sucked into these companies if they believe what they’re told. (And the recruiters are very slick about it. Well-trained so their lies are believable.)

    I’m not sure what kind of axe you think I have to grind with MK. The company is full of predators. Truly a wolf in sheep’s clothing. And that’s why I’ll continue to spread the word to consumers about it.

  • Doo Dilly says:
    4 January 2010

    It amazes me that the MLMer’s never have anything new to say. The comments are continually recycled. Thank goodness Tracy is biased– she is also honest, courageous, and dripping in facts to back up her statements. it is obvious to anyone who reads this entire blog that her motives are altruistic.

    I hope some day the DSA and MLM companies will be lacking enough money to “encourage” Congress to shy away from enacting legislation to shut them all down. Until then, I’m grateful to Tracy and others who continue to educate consumers–real people are being harmed every day, both financially and emotionally–sometimes with devastating results.

  • Selina says:
    4 January 2010

    Tracy,

    Regarding your statement,
    “Mary Kay is a recruiting scheme. The vast majority of the products sold to the consultants is never resold to an actual customer. Is it because the consultants really don’t try to sell? No! It’s because the products are of mediocre quality and are overpriced. Besides that, women have oodles of choices on the internet and in the stores. There’s just no need to go through the hassle of dealing with a Mary Kay lady”

    While you may have had good intentions writing this article, I think you make a lot of unnecessary assumptions that it does indeed seem like you may have had a bad experience with MK and are trying to deter others from the company. First assumption, “The vast majority of the products sold to the consultants is never resold to an actual customer” The consultant buying the product should bear some responsibility, as the nature of any business is such that you don’t carry too much inventory unless you establish a track record based on sales to determine an optimal inventory level. Additionally, a company does not get to 2 billion sales by “scamming” as you suggest and still be in business for over 15 years. MK has tapped into a business model that has made them successful and tries to empower women to be successful too. Not all women have the acumen for busines, those who don’t soon discover that this is not for them and leave albeit at a financial loss to say the least. Secondly, you mention that the products are of “mediocre quality and are overpriced. Besides that, women have oodles of choices on the internet and in the stores” You have not provided a list of other cosmetics companies, their product quality and price such that we the consumers can make a comparative analysis. You have come to this conclusion without providing any statistical data upon which we can look to and hopefully draw the same conclusion you have drawn. Finally, MK business delivery method is such that they use other women to sell products to other women . We cannot fault them for this stance. There are many delivery methods available to any business, this just seems to be one of the delivery mechanism they use.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 January 2010

    Selina – I think you may be a bit confused about my article, so I’d like the chance to clear things up. I’m not writing about Mary Kay because of a bad experience I’ve had with the company. I’m writing about it because almost everyone loses money in MK, and it’s not for lack of effort or business savvy. It is because it is an MLM system that guarantees losses for almost everyone except those at the top of the pyramid.

    I am a very successful business owner, with 10 years under my belt in this business. I’ve proven to be very good at selling and executing a business plan, as my success here shows.

    Mary Kay has been very successful as a corporation and has made oodles of money at the expense of women around the world who only have financial losses to show for their time in MK. I do not applaud them for that because they are a wolf in sheep’s clothing. They don’t empower women, they victimize them.

    As for other products… There are thousands of them and there is plenty of information about all of them on the internet. I’m not here to provide you with statistical data about cosmetics. That research you can do on your own, and then you can form your own opinion. I’ve simply given my opinion on the products based on my personal experience with cosmetics.

  • Doo Dilly says:
    5 January 2010

    Game, set and match to Tracy. Again.

    And it only took 8 hours for someone to prove my point…

  • selina says:
    5 January 2010

    Tracy,

    I applaud you on your business acuity and the success thereafter. My overaching points in reading your article is firstly, it is ridden with personal experience that it is thusly rendered subjective in it’s analysis because that is what stands out. Secondly when I ask for statistical data it is analogous to me making the point yet again that you are using your personal opinions (subjective) to educate consumers on MK as a corporation whereas providing more data (objective) would make the point much better while leaving out your heavy reliance on opinions. Indeed consumers have cosmetic choices, and one of the many choices in line is indeed MK cosmetics which if i can introduce an opinion i have found lots of women actually like . What data do you have to support your arguement that half a million women a year are destroyed by MK other than the high consultant turnover rate which could easily be attributed to other factors not related to MK business strategy; such as the realization that business ownership is indeed not for the faint at heart. As the adage goes 9 out of 10 restaurants fail in the first year. This data does not therefore lead me to malign the restaurant industry as a scheme.

    “As for other products… There are thousands of them and there is plenty of information about all of them on the internet. I’m not here to provide you with statistical data about cosmetics. That research you can do on your own, and then you can form your own opinion. I’ve simply given my opinion on the products based on my personal experience with cosmetics.”

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 January 2010

    Yes, Selina, I do in fact have an opinion about Mary Kay and discuss that opinion here and elsewhere. That’s what blogs are for. If you want a statistical analysis of the cosmetics industry, you’ll have to go elsewhere.

    Your comparison to the restaurant industry is not valid. A restaurant is a real business. MLMs like Mary Kay are nothing more than recruiting schemes which, by design, create massive losses.

  • Selina says:
    5 January 2010

    Sorry, I forgot. It’s a blog therefore subjective.

  • chloe says:
    6 January 2010

    i am a mk consultant and a ffing hate it, i want to quit so bad, but the person i turn to makes me feel so bad, and asks why what can i do to improve it for u to like it, there’s nothing, i love the products, but i think they are a big rip off for the price..

    i hate the meetings, and i get ripped into if ive missed one even though u dont have to go to them!

    i hate mk

    when i joinned they never told me i would have to pay 600 dollars to get the products in so many weeks or the det collorects willl be on ur door!

    dont join people!

  • Alma says:
    7 January 2010

    I am a mary kay consultant and i have been trying the products for about a year now. I love this products more than the others. Ans yea we sell lipstick and lotions but we are honored to.The women that sells mary kay is a complete women and professional. If you dont like it that your opinion but i do so whatever.

  • Alana says:
    8 January 2010

    I have been running a small MK business from my home for 10 years now. I order enough inventory for myself and my small customer base a few times a year. I make enough money to pay for my daughter’s competition dance. I have two aunts and several friends who are director level and above. Many of them drive MK cars. Of course, I would love to make the kind of money the leaders in this company make but I choose to work my business less than what that takes.

    What is curious to me about Tracy is how maliciously she speaks for someone who claims to be altruistic. I have experienced all of the things Tracy has said but it is sorely misrepresented. Isn’t it a no brainer that there will be some who are corrupt, some who just can’t say no, some who take sales too far and some who aren’t cut out to have their own business? This is unfortunate but a reality. But you should know that at the heart of MK is people. Women, who genuinely care for eachother. This has been my experience – a great one. Experience is something Tracy doesn’t have.

    What it really comes down to is your choices. How much should I work my business? How do you want to spend your time? Are you cut out for sales or better off working in another occupation? How do you want to conduct business? Are you going to lie and manipulate to get to your goals or are you going to conduct yourself as a sales professional? Bottom line, we reap what we sow.

    Tracy – What are you sowing here? I see nothing that brings good.
    Chloe – Please quit your MK business. If you are that miserable, no good MK recruiter would want you to stay in. Shame on whoever is making you feel bad in order to keep you in. At the same time, take some responsibility for your inability to say what you mean and stick to it. No one is making you go to meetings, order product or anything else. These are your choices.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    8 January 2010

    Alana – There is nothing malicious about how I speak. What is malicious is the way MK makes money…. by using “independent” representatives who lie and coerce women into this “opportunity”. They misrepresent their earnings and they don’t fully inform women about pertinent facts before they are recruited. THAT, my friend, is dishonest and malicious.

    And yes, I have plenty of experience with Mary Kay on which to base my opinions.

    I won’t apologize for telling the ugly truth about Mary Kay. Someone has to. What am I sowing? I am providing critical information that recruits need. And hopefully by getting this information in their hands, fewer will sign up for this losing proposition.

  • Sheryl says:
    8 January 2010

    I started selling MK in April 09. No pressures, etc. I simply wanted the product for myself and family. I hardly make anything as I sell to them at cost. I have a full time job so this is not my sole income.
    I did not get pressured to BUY A BIG INVENTORY! I buy what I want, when I want.
    If I dont want to go to meetings. I DONT GO.
    Simply put, everything is what you make it. I know how to say NO. I dont go to meetings because I dont care to wear slacks and jackets. I keep up with the new products, I have business cards, I have a website and I am taking a loss on my business this year. WHY? Because it takes money to start a business. And taking a loss is not going to kill me! MY Husband is not brain washed either! I can think for myself. I am independent. I see nothing wrong with Mary Kay. Whats the difference in it and anything else you sell? TRUE, you can buy other makeup over the counter at the drugstore, etc. BUT, it is no better and certainly no higher then MARY KAY!!!!!
    Mary Kay goes a long way. YOU use less then other products. It goes a long way!!!

    Thanks!

  • Jacky smith says:
    17 January 2010

    ONE BIG PINK BALLON! You buy it because it looks pretty and you want it! But it doesn’t last long or can blow up instantly You will know the truth about MKcompany ONLY when your family member works very hard for 7 years in MK cosmetics and still cannot afford to buy a pair of jeans unless her
    ( working) husband gives her American Express to shop. She shops, lives in a beautiful house and always says to her customers” come to my house to see how I live. If you want it- start the business!”
    She is so brainwashed and unfortunately her husband too. I feel bad for him: he pays all the bills, supports his whole family and just like other husbands BELIEVE that one day his wife will make a milllion of $ and they will all retire. Buy that time HE will spend $ 2,000 000 in her product purchases!!!Good luck!!! I feel uncomfortable when she makes phone calls and tells women” You can make great money in MK company even you have kids and you are a stay home mama” Why she can’t? Why she can’t even sell one miracle set or recruit her girlfriend?( Who is smarter) Her husband’s AMEX is already on fire with all MK orders for her over $ 1800 every three months.
    Consulatnts lie to each other every day. Pat each other and make those loud parties to show that they are so succesful. Ok . Show me your salary for one year!!!Sorry if you did not understand something- My English is a second language ( I am from Venice, Italy)

  • mhaj says:
    18 January 2010

    hey,just a while ago my cousin called and asked me if I want to join Mary Kay.I said I’ll check it through the net…and this is what i found…hayz..
    its so confusing…now I really have to think hard…

  • Realistically says:
    18 January 2010

    I am always intrigued by comments left by those who know nothing about Mary Kay, yet, they write books and open up websites trying to “expose” some dirty little secret like a story written for Dateline or 60 Minutes.
    Ladies, sales is hard work. Sales is the hardest profession you will ever love. I have been in MK for 15 years and I intend to never retire. I love what I do. If any of you who are consultants “love” what you do, then stay away from this site. I happened to be searching for something else and felt compelled to see what was here. I am very disappointed in those who feel they have “tried and died” and feel they need to educate the entire world on why MK did not work for them.
    Sales is about building relationships, strong bonds, learning to love all types of individuals – even the ones who want to try all the lip samples you have, and most importantly LOVING what you do.
    I did not begin my business with Inventory and was never pressured in to doing so. I am never contacted by my National or my Director to hold “X” amount of appointments or parties. If I need them, I know they are an e-mail or phone call away. I have a private business coach and mentor – because I choose to have one. My success is dependent upon me treating my business for the way it is to be treated: LIKE A BUSINESS. If you are not working, not occasionally warm-chattering, holding appointments and making phone calls then you have a hobby – not a business.
    No rocket science here ladies – just work!

  • Darlene McWilliams says:
    19 January 2010

    I sold MK years ago when I was very young. I quit after 6 months. Then, I sold it again when I was married and a bit older. I soon stopped a second time, but not because I didn’t like it or see the value in the products. I stopped because I wasn’t motivated and I wasn’t willing to work as hard as others. I think I originally started with MK because it was the only way I could see thow I could get some business experience and make a few dollars. What I didn’t realize was, I didn’t have the management skills to manage all that I was trying to do…wife…mother…church volunteer…etc. I am bright…very creative with lots of energy but had to get better judgement. Perhaps MK could have taught me more about how to be successful. But I fell into that 95% category of people who give up before really trying. And also to be honest, I had to learn to think before saying yes all the time. That wasn’t the fault of MK. However, the few pushy sales reps and directors did get on my last nerve. Still, I won’t blame the overly ambitious reps who also may truly believe what they are saying.

    I don’t see MK as a bad thing. I don’t see MLM as a bad thing. In fact, some of the principles that I learned in MK helped me to develop better skills in my own business today. I even used some of the skills and principles in my parenting. Now a widow, and five kids later…I think I am doing ok. One our children graduated from Wharton…one is graduating from a prestigious film school in May. One is at Yale, and one is on his way to another Ivy league in the fall. The high schooler wants to start her own business. I was able to take the good I saw there at (MK) and some other companies and use it for my prosperity and take the bad I saw and learn what not to do from it.

    No company or person is perfect. MK and me included. Companies are like people. I hardly believe Tracy, that this is white collar crime. I don’t think that MK blatantly tries to deceive as you represent. Could things be better? Yes. I am sure that Mary Kay herself (from the grave if she could) would agree. It is not the original company that she created and was so passionate about.

    Yes, (MK) makes the very hard push to get sales reps to feel very committed. They are no different from any other MLM company. With all this being said, I think we as women have to do two important things…learn to say no, when to say yes, and learn to look at these things with business eyes and not goo goo eyes. This is hard for us, because so many of us still do not have the opportunity to have our own businesses and raise a family at the same time. Secondly, we need to see the value in a things we do, mistakes and all…and use it to our benefit. Then we have no regrets…and we can help our sisters learn from a healthier point of view.

    Whereas I appreciate your efforts to make us aware…and please don’t stop….but also, please don’t exaggerate. What seems to be an exaggeration of the issue to me, almost places you in parallel position with those pushy reps. You seem to have a clear disdain for the company. Could you offer the women some positive advice? I am sure that you have some. I Love your energy and how you are tremendously gifted. May God Bless you in all of your endeavors.

    Respectfully, Darlene

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    19 January 2010

    Darlene –

    I haven’t said that Mary Kay is white collar crime.

    And your statistic that 95% give up before really trying is completely made up. This is a standard response when people criticize the abusive business model MK uses. They assume people didn’t really try. I’ve interacted on pinktruth.com with thousands of women who really did try and didn’t get results. Why? Because the products are overpriced and difficult to sell, and even when they’re sold they don’t offer enough profit to make this a workable job. The only real money is to be had if you participate in massive recruiting, and even then your chances of success are slim to none.

  • Here in Alabama says:
    19 January 2010

    Tracy,
    I too want to thank you for the effort and energy put forth here. I was once a consultant as a part time job and will let you know that I enjoyed it very much. I too put forth the money for the upfront inventory but I was able too. Had I not had the money, there was an option to sell from others inventory until I was able to buy my inventory. I will agree that there are some very pushy reps in the business but those are the ones in your statistics from the Applause Magazine.

    I found like many women that I was not organized enough to manage church, family, full time job responsibilities and Mary Kay. So, guess what had to go. I have been a Mary Kay customer for about 20 years and I enjoy there products very much. I am 40 and get complimented very often on how young I look. I do not say that to seem vain but I attribute it to the Mary Kay products.

    I am sorry for the women who jump into anything without first doing the research. I am not a college educated person but I do know to educate myself before getting involved in anything. With today’s opportunities there is no excuse for going into something blind.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    19 January 2010

    And that’s exactly why this site and http://www.pinktruth.com exist – So women can do real research on Mary Kay before they get involved. Until about 2005, there was literally NOWHERE to get the “other side” of teh Mary Kay story. The one in which the sad statistics about 99% of women losing money with it…. the reality.

  • Idelissa says:
    20 January 2010

    I have not had any experience with MK, but, I have tried many times with any number, regardless of what the are selling, you have to have a large supply of money to get the business off the ground, if i had that I wouldn’t need the business! I love what yo are doing, and I wish I had gone searching for such information when I had been recruited by HERBALIFE, just to name one of the many scams out there! I give my self credit though for being ever optimistic and hopeful despite the money I have lost, and that attitude, unfortunately makes me a target! Keep up the fight, it’s worth it!

  • Arielle says:
    25 January 2010

    Ladies please beware Mary Kay is a scam! Its not what you think it is. You have to dish out so much money for expensive low quality products that aren’t up to par. Save yourself time and money & find something else to do. Avon,MK,and any other cosmetic business isn’t worth it. Why do you think we’re not selling MAC,Revlon,Covergirl,etc? Because the name says itself we don’t have to market those brands,the brands market themselves.

  • Rhonda Brown says:
    26 January 2010

    I really wanted to get into MK to help pay off some bills. But after reading this I feel that I might have another bill to pay off. Now, I really need to think about this change

  • Melissa says:
    27 January 2010

    I also am a MK consultant, and have been for about a year now, and I use it just to make some extra cash when I need it. I think that your view is entirely way to skewed, yes you are encouraged to purchase a large inventory and it is 100% true that it is way easier to have it on hand and you make money more easily that way. The fact that you say it is “cult” like is crazy, you wouldn’t say that about any job, and most office jobs require. oh gee I DONT KNOW A SKIRT AND PANTYHOSE or at least in dressy attire!!!! Just because it is not in some fancy big buidling and is from mostly inside of your house doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t treat it as if it weren’t a professional setting. Private schools require girls to wear skirts, are they a cult too??
    From personally seeing it, the high turnover are for people who don’t have the motivation to do anything with it and let it fade away, it is still WORK. You still have to do stuff to earn that money, it doesn’t fall into your lap.
    I love all of the products and have used them for years before I by myself decided to become a consultant and get the discount. I don’t even do very much and I make extra cash and get the stuff that I need for free.
    ALSO, just because it has a high turnover rate and someone decideds to not be with the company anymore does not mean it destroyed their life!
    If you decide Mary Kay is not for you, you can send every little product you have straight back to the company and be reimbursed!!! Not to mention that the company fully replaces any product that a customer doesn’t like, whether it is full, half empty or completely gone.

    I really think you need to look into what you are talking and I agree with some of the other women that you seriously have a biased view.

    I would blame whichever psycho you had pushing you, not the entire company. My Director is amazing and never pressures me if I decline something, and she is extreemly successful.
    It is a persons attitude you seem to mostly be complaining about.
    Go out and meet more women in it before you go off on a crazy rant.

  • Marilyn says:
    29 January 2010

    Tracy,

    I just came across your website as I was about to order my Mary Kay Cosmetics. I can’t believe that I’m sitting here wasting my time writing this, but I am SO FED UP with people who are sue-happy and/or want to blame others rather than take responsibility for their own actions. What made you pick Mary Kay Cosmetics? It appears that you had a bad experience with the Company or a consultant. Were you ever a consultant, or even tried the product?

    I was a consultant over 35 years ago. I love the products and have used them since that time, along with products from different companies. While I was a consultant, I saw the skin care work magic for many people with very bad acne; others it didn’t help as much, but, at least they looked and felt great about themselves. Not everything works the same for everyone.

    It’s very hard to believe that someone’s life was “DESTROYED” by investing $600 into anything. If they invested over what their budget allowed, it’s their poor judgment, no one else’s fault. If I recall correctly, Mary Kay offers to buy back product if one quits (pretty generous, if you ask me); they just can’t be a MK consultant again. Or, if they think they may what to sign up again, just keep the product, use it or sell it, as you would with any other company that goes out of business. The Company’s policies were straight forward and fair to all.

    What difference does it make how many people signed up, then quit. That’s the way business is; MK’s a large company and deals with large numbers of people. I was a consultant for about 7 years; quit for a couple of years, then went back for a couple of more years, then quit again. I take complete responsibility for my actions of joining the company and the decisions as to whether or not to stay with the business. Yes, “buyers beware” with ANY company, product or transaction, but ultimately you make the final decision. No one held a gun to my head and forced me to sign up. No, I didn’t make a tremendous amount of money, but it’s like anything else: You get out of it what you put into it. If I had worked harder and put in more time, I would have made more money. I have no regrets and found it to be a fabulous company and a good learning experience.

    Perhaps rather than putting all of your energy into trashing the company and other similar type businesses, you could council people on questions to ask and what to look for before taking any job or considering a sales position. This would be more constructive.

  • kathy says:
    29 January 2010

    I’ve been a customer for 15 years. LOVE THE PRODUCT! When someone says it doesn’t workking it makes me laugh. When I compare my skin to my friends that use other brands or nothing my skin looks much better and I look at least 10 years younger.

  • kathy says:
    29 January 2010

    I agree with some of the things said about MaryKay. I too was pressured into buying a large inventory and had to spend a lot of money. I also agree that these consultants are high pressure people that make you feel bad about not selling what they think you should sell. I was also under the impression that you could make a pile of money just by selling there cosmetics and skin care. there products are overpriced and I feel not as good as the departstore brands and much more expensive. In any home based business you should really do research before you get into it. If it works for you, it works for you. if it doesn’t it doesn’t and that goes for any business even Mary Kay but MK is very expensive to start and I don’t think lives up to expectations.

  • Tara says:
    3 February 2010

    I am a MK consultant also. A very good friend of mine and I began our business at the same time. I purchased my $600 inventory at my choice and sold every bit. I love my business and do not in any way plan to stop. My friend however placed her minimum $200 order with no pressure to buy more. She has recentley given up her business at her own will stating her personal life didn’t allow the time for her business. Not because she was scammed or lost money. I have an awesome director who never pushes me to do more than I can or want to. She let’s me know she is there to help if I need her. I am a college graduate and a full time nurse, therefore my MK business is used for extra money and pleasure. I do hold classes for clients and every customer I have loves MK products, as do I. I truely belive with my business, as with any business, you DO get what you put in. If you do nothing with it, obviously you won’t make money. No one pressured me to begin my business, I did it of my own free will, as do others that start. You truely can not blame the company if you do nothing with your business. Blame yourself.

  • wendy says:
    4 February 2010

    Tracy,

    I applaud you for your courage. People like you make a difference in this world. If the information you provided helps one person from making the same mistake others have, then it is all worth it. I’m sure when you posted this blog, you were aware of the fact that some people would disagree. Sadly enough, when people get caught in pyramid schemes, it is hard for them to face reality. As we all know, pyramids arent square, so the success does not trickle down to all. You have to be at the top of a pyramid, very pushy, sauvy, and intellectual enough to persuade your followers to be successful enough to keep you at the top.

  • ursula says:
    5 February 2010

    Tracy,

    Have you done an IP check on these commenters? After reading through the comments it seems clear to me that someone has multi-spammed your comments under different identities.

    What the hell? The comments all sound the same…”I love mary kay”…and other such inane redundancy.

    Mary Kay IS OBVIOUSLY SKETCHY and I’m proud of you for calling them out on it. Keep it up! You are doing women an important service.

    And PLEASE check the IP on these comments and remove the fake ones.

    Another thing – How does it empower women to tell them they need makeup (the underlying message being they are unfit without it). We should be empowering women to be their natural glowing selves, radiant from within. None of this chemical makeup crap.

    LOVE

  • wendy says:
    5 February 2010

    mispelled word……………………sauvy…..should have been spelled suave……….as in smooth and charming…….

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 February 2010

    Ursula – I think they all sound the same because they’ve all taken part in the MK brainwashing. They have been teaching the same scripts forever, which is why you hear so many of the same things over and over…

    – you’re just a disgruntled ex-consultant
    – no one held a gun to your head
    – take responsibility for your decisions
    – Mary Kay works when you do
    – you weren’t willing to put in the work
    – you just wanted a get rich quick scheme
    – no one forced me to buy inventory
    – i’ve never been lied to in MK
    – isn’t there a better cause you could spend your time on
    – you’re just bitter
    – why not find something constructive to do
    – you’re just a bunch of lazy losers
    – you’re just a bunch of complainers
    – you had a bad experience, move on
    – you obviously don’t have what it takes to run a successful business

    Personally, I’ve shot down each and every one of those claims as false. But they’re still the scripts the Kaybots are taught…. bless their little hearts.

  • Barbara says:
    5 February 2010

    Wow, I have to admit Tracey that you do sound a bit angry. I am a consultant but I ususlly buy only what myself, friends and family need. I make enough to cover the costs of the make-up and shipping – that’s it. I have never been pressured to buy what I don’t need and the only inventory I keep is for myself. In fact, I haven’t attended one meeting and nobody has jumped down my throat and I’ve been in for about 4 years. I do think providing all sides of the equation are important but it seems like your are only providing one side which is probably why you are getting so many negative responses. Like if we disagree with your opinion we are brainwashed – not sure who would have done that to me since my Director is in another state and I don’t attend any meetings.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 February 2010

    Ah… I forgot the “you’re angry” accusation. That’s a good one too. There are plenty of pro-MK websites out there that only tell the rah-rah and are full of massive lies about how awesome MK is. They’re not willing to provide the truth to people researching MK. So the truth is to be printed here. And it is.

  • Barbara says:
    5 February 2010

    I don’t think I was rude at all when I blogged to you, so I would ask why all the mean spirited sarcasm? I was just providing my point of view.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 February 2010

    There is no sarcasm Barbara. What I set forth in my comment is simply the truth.

  • Barbara says:
    5 February 2010

    Tracy, if you can’t or refuse to recognize your sarcasm “That’s a good one too.” then that is an entirely whole other issue. Anyways, because there seems to be no real desire to have any issues represented here other then your own and all others will be immediately shot down and disregarded then I’ll just go elsewhere. Thanks for your time and good luck.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 February 2010

    Barbara – You’re right. This is not the place for a pro-Mary Kay agenda. MK is a horrible company that preys on women, especially the vulnerable and weak. The entire management team is devoid of any ethics, in the quest for the almighty dollar. The goal is to sell as many thousands of dollars of products to each consultant as possible, knowing their chances of actually retailing those products for any reasonable profit are slim to none. The company knows almost everyone involved in MK will lose money, but that doesn’t stop them. I’m not going to let anyone come on this site and pretend that MK is a good and ethical company. It is not. The fantasies of you and other Kaybots belong elsewhere on the internet.

  • Rob says:
    5 February 2010

    I am working on a Mary Kay case study as part of an Executive MBA program.

    I believe recruiting is the primary strategy for driving sales volume. Turnover is high but probably not too much higher than other MLM systems. What amazes me is this… from the statistics I have been presented from the class, it appears that MK consultants as a large portion [about 90+%] make less that $6.00 per hour. Could this be the true? I took the gross annual commission/earnings of the majority of consultants (no directors/VIP’s/no Star directors) divided by the average hours worked in a year and came up with this hourly figure.

    What would anyone think of this broad strategy……1. Mary Kay provided a sample kit of products at cost 2. Raised the bar on expected sales volumes 3. Increased the period of time a consultant must sustain sales for qualification of the VIP car 4. Worked on providing more job enrichment 5. Developed more prepared Sales Directors through business management seminars 6. Created a partnership of franchisee type of environment.

    Betcha’ never thought you all would get a guy on this blog……..

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    5 February 2010

    Rob – That strategy is a waste of time. Why? Because the “business model” used by MK and other MLMs is an absolute failure. People cannot personally sell a high enough volume of products to make a true living. The only ones who really make a meaningful income are the ones at the very top of the pyramid who have hundreds or thousands of people under them. And in order for those pyramid toppers to make their income, almost everyone below them has to lose money in the scheme (again because they cannot sell enough products personally to make an income).

  • Rob says:
    5 February 2010

    From a pure business perspective……that is what I am beginning to see come into focus. From those in your blog that have previously posted and stated they are involved in MK for certain friendships, bonding time and just because they use the product–I tend to believe them more so than those talking about a great living. I have to be careful in saying this….but the data and information provided to us from the class handout supports [ and very reliably] that consultant sales can rise only so much, and recruiting is a really big source of growth…[I'm assuming sales growth] for the company. It is amazing also, no one in the blogs I have read here….mention much about the “pink rides” they can win…..is this a pretty challenging accomplish/milestone to reach? I thought the cars were a big thing……..

  • Doo Dilly says:
    6 February 2010

    Rob: There are several articles here about the car programs in MKC:

    http://www.pinktruth.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=blogcategory&id=20&Itemid=90

  • Brenda Mendez says:
    23 February 2010

    Woow sound like somebody wasn’t invited to the American Way, while your at it, bash, Wal-Mart, Target, Macy, and all the other sales opportunities that’s in your face every 5 minutes on commercials, grow up and stop being angry cry baby, it’s a great opportunity if your willing to work., if not well you can go off to college and pay over a hundred thousand dollars their and finish with your degree and start your sales position at Home Depot or McDonald’s. It’s called LIFE!!!!!

  • Lu says:
    23 February 2010

    Quoting Barbara’s comments from February 5, 2010: “I make enough to cover the costs of the make-up and shipping – that’s it. ”

    Not quite what I would consider a glowing endorsement of a Mary Kay enterprise…more like a hobby than a business, hmm?

  • Lu says:
    23 February 2010

    Sorry if this is out of place, but I got to this site while looking for a list of top salespeople/”queens of sales?” for MKC. Is it available anywhere? I would think that promoting/honoring such individuals (on an annual basis) would make for good publicity, but I couldn’t find it on MKC’s website. Thanks for a point in the right direction.

  • ashamed says:
    26 February 2010

    saddened by this post. mk enriches womens lives!

  • Doo Dilly says:
    27 February 2010

    Are you ashamed to be associated with MK, and saddened to learn the truth? MK enriches the pocket books of the 1% TOPP’s (top of the pyramid people) specifically by depleting the pocket books of the other 99%. As to women’s “lives”, MK destroys relationships and the emotional well being of women who are deceived into joining and incurring thousands of dollars of debt.

    As with all legal pyramid schemes (aka MLMs), the very structure of the” business model” is morally and ethically reprehensible.

  • Sara says:
    7 March 2010

    I am sorry but you people are ignorant. Have you spoken with an actual Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultant? Have you heard what they have to say? Mary Kay changed my life!

    I am 22 and I am a MK Independent Beauty Consultant. Everything Mary Kay Inc. does is legit and legal and definitely is not fraud. Mary Kay in fact is not even a pyramid!!! Yes, we recruit, but we don’t have to in order to make money. The philosophy of Mary Kay is follow the Golden Rule, the “GoGive” Spirit! We simply help women and teach about skin care and if they don’t want it, it’s okay. We just move on. We also do not recruit in a pyramid-like matter. We give women the opportunity to take control of their lives and become their own boss and own their own business!

    As for the one, Lu, that was doing research to look for the top sales people/”Queens of Sales” look harder, the evidence is there!

  • Sara says:
    7 March 2010

    If you want to investigate a recruiting scheme or a pyramid company, investigate NuSkin! See what they tell you about recruiting people. They will tell you to recruit five people within the first three weeks you join them. They don’t even give you an opportunity to be a customer because the push to recruit you right away!

    After you learn about NuSkin, then come back and tell me what you think of Mary Kay!

  • jpotzi says:
    8 March 2010

    You sound like a bitter woman. Mary Kay is the ONLY product that has ever done wonders for my skin!

  • Salesman says:
    8 March 2010

    Sara, check back in when Mom & Dad terminate your scholarship. I want to see how fired up you are then.

  • Cheri says:
    12 March 2010

    It is sad that when someone isn’t successful because of their lack of trying, people blame someone else. Bitter people blame others. It is sad there is such a victim mentality out there!
    The MK company does repurchase products purchased within a year at 90%. In a years time, you should be able to make a decision if the opportunity is right for you.
    I think that says volume to the fact that Mary Kay is NOT a scam, but has an opportunity for the few that choose to give it a try.
    Look at the numbers of how many go to college and quit. Does that mean no one should make any attempt to go to college? Think about that!

  • Ria says:
    15 March 2010

    Success in Selling Mary Kay does NOT come down to trying. It comes down to wanting to bother people. If you are comfortable asking people to buy things they clearly don’t want or need than you will be a great Mary Kay consultant. You’ll be even more successful if you can convince someone ELSE to bother everyone they know pushing things they don’t want or need. Mary Kay’s required purchases are too high in this economy. Buy on Mary Kay on a web auction site…help the thousands of former ( and current) Mary Kay consultants that have overstocked.

  • mary says:
    16 March 2010

    IS SOOORRY!!! to hear a person talking that way about MARY KAY COSMETIC it has work for me wonders on my skin i am a independent beauty consultant for MARY KAY COSM. this products are high quality not just some sheap cosmetics like someome express if u dont use them every day do not bother by saying is a scam because is going to work for you as u use them and on the bussiness side is really up to u how good u are on bugetting your expenses because this is a bussiness that u are oppenning as with any other bussiness u need to have a store with products or u are not selling anything if u have one product or two do u think u will be making a profit ? or sale big of course not! so if u are not good on selling or talking to people , please look for something that u are good on!!! and stop wasting your time or MARY KAY would close a long time ago and is getting bigger every day sorry u feel this way about such a wonderful company who is just helping women grow their self steem

  • LeeD says:
    16 March 2010

    I’m DYING over here at “Mary’s” “sheap cosmetics” and “self steem” not to mention the terrible abuse of the letter “u.”

  • Dietmar Scherf says:
    16 March 2010

    Mary Kay cosmetics is nothing other than a gigantic pyramid scam ruining the lives of women left and right. With it’s weekly pep-rallies and frequent “career” conferences in addition to the annual “Dallas” convention, and the virtually daily co-dependent pep talks from a local director, ignorant women become self-absorbed through brainwashing into a delusional state. Yes, many have the American Dream, but there’s nothing worse than deceiving people and not providing them with the facts and the reality of a business and how it’s done. In the process most MK “consultants” become enstranged to their husbands and kids as the “future director” will have to work many, many hours on the phone, attend meetings, do “free” facials, and cold chatting (talking to strangers on the street) to somehow sell her products. Often these products are sold a steep discount so that the purchased inventory is sold off somehow. There’s no time left for the MK consultant’s husband and kids anymore, because the MK activities go on and on late in the evenings and on weekends and so forth. Everything takes second place to the Mary Kay “career” while the “future director” is spending the family fortune on ever increasing inventory just to establish a fake track record and to keep on getting her own discount.

    Most of the sales reports by the so-called “star directors” etc. are false and a hoax. Mary Kay is solely build on recruiting new “consultants” as this is the only way someone can “earn” their “free” car and to climb the ladder of “MK success.” The problem is that the success rate is so small that most MK consultant will never have a shot to even have a decend normal income. As we know the MK system very well and have/had family members involved in this scam, we know the pain, the hurt and the heartache that comes with the Mary Kay “business.” The best advice is to every woman is to not even discuss the MK “opportunity” with a “MK consultant’ and to not even get the “free” facial, because it’s a dangerous door to open and it will also hurt the “MK consultant” and their family.

    It’s a free country, but we just wonder why the FTC doesn’t shut down the Mary Kay operation? It’s just a MLM scam and literally, women’s lives are being ruined as also their marriages and families are being destroyed in the process.

    d

  • Jon says:
    16 March 2010

    Cheri -> “Mary Kay is NOT a scam, but has an opportunity for the few that choose to give it a try.
    Look at the numbers of how many go to college and quit. Does that mean no one should make any attempt to go to college? Think about that!”

    Would you enroll in a college that only passed the top 5% of the performers? That’s the appropriate comparison.

    Think about that!

  • Blessed says:
    17 March 2010

    Well said Dietmar.

    There are those out there who would suggest (and did so on another web site, purported to be unbiased), that dropping out of MK stems from a personal shortcoming, such as (by analogy) an inability to sing would eliminate one from American Idol. Oh PLEASE!!!!

    People leave the MK MLM largely because they are the product of a very predictable process which churns women in droves, by design. The product sold during propagation of this social virus is not creams, lipstick or any other tangible item; the product sold by the MK MLM is fantasy, extremely expensive fantasy. My message to the shameless shills who promote this dreg on the web is this: When you come to your senses, don’t beat yourself up too much. There are many who were bilked by the MK MLM con who offer support to those stepping into reality and away from facilitation of further victimization of women and their families. Join the ever growing ranks of Mary Kay Cosmetics survivors.

    The MK MLM is very simply a well designed scam which exploits women. Who really wants to be a part of this? Who really wants to continue as a shill for this cult-like entity? Look in the mirror… Are you really the type who wants to publicly compare victims of the MK MLM to folks who just can’t sing?

    Blessed

  • chris says:
    17 March 2010

    well about all of this, No one should be selling Mk they have there web site plus it’s hard to even try to sell out there, so many makeup line out there how can you sell this stuff and make money, back then when she now started her line off course you could of make the money, but not now, MK should cut out the middle man now, should not make people think that the can make a lot off money being a consultant, it like asking to sell insurance(,lol ) I do love her makeup it is the best, compere to other high end brand her stuff looks good. MK know that people don’t need any body coming to there door to try and sell her stuff, women should know these thing come on people, there are web site you can check everything, MK sellers cheap on alot of on line store’s lol

  • Cindy says:
    23 March 2010

    What disturbs me the most Is the Ingredients listed In the products. Talc & Parabens should be avoided In csmetics as they do more harm to your skin. Over all Bare Minerals only has 5 Ingredients
    In thier foundation. Bare Escentuals is a natural mineral makeup we have all probably seen at one time or another on an infomercial. It contains 5 natural ingredients all rated safe on the Skin Deep Database:

    Titanium Dioxide
    Zinc Oxide
    Bismuth Oxychloride
    Mica
    Iron Oxides
    I admit some may be allergic to one or 2 of the minerals, It Is still not harmful.

    Mary Kay on the other hand has a slew of bad Ingredients In thei products…

    http://parabenfreeprincess.blogspot.com/2009/01/mary-kay-ingredients-paraben-baddies.html

    Bottom line, Mary Kay IS NOT considered “High End” makeup these days.

  • Linda says:
    24 March 2010

    Mary Kay Cosmetics has NEVER been a pyramid. If anyone looks up the workings of a sales pyramid, they will learn that means one level pays the next. All the commissions paid to all MK consultants comes from the HQ in Dallas. No consultant has ever had to pay commission to a recruiter. I have been a consultant 30 years and have never paid anyone one cent. We are all paid by the company. As for who succeeds or who doesn’t, those parameters apply to every other sales position you can think of – cars, real estate, insurance – some are far more successful than others. And anyone who shops the top brands in department stores knows MK prices are competitive if not better for an excellent product.

  • Susan says:
    24 March 2010

    Tracey,
    First of all, the fact that you created a website dedicated to the slander of a multi billion dollar company indicates to me that you do NOT have enough to do with your day. It’s as simply as this: if you do not like the product, do not buy it. If you do not like the system, do not join it. Any intelligent woman over the age of 22 should at that point in there lives understand what does and does not work for their skin. Any dermatologist will tell you, some products do not work for everyone. We can go on and on about the ethics of the business (which by the way are legal- the government would have something to say if they were not) and argue about whether or not it is the right choice for women to make when turning to an extra source of income. HOWEVER people do what they want to do and obviously say what they want to say. My point is, stop wasting your own life harboring against a company that you will never have an impact on. Time is too short and too unpredictable to waste being ugly and bitter over a company you have NOTHING to do with!

    P.S. It almost seems as though the author of this article has a personal vendetta against MK? Just a thought.

  • Chloe says:
    25 March 2010

    Hi Tracy,

    I’m NOT a MK consultant but have recently tried the product and found it an “OK” product. I hold a neutral position regarding this.

    I’m a little curious, what other sources other than your own opinion are you using to support your opinion about Mary Kay? Could you please post some links for me? I’ve been checking out links you’ve posted on this website but I didn’t see any that links to any creditable source. Please stop avoiding this question because I was reading through the comments and people have asked you to post reliable links to support your opinion/argument but all you did was tell them to scroll up and read. Stop avoiding and post links to RELIABLE sources that supports your point. Its just gonna take 5 mins. of your time (at the most). You might change my view towards MK and save me from losing a lot of money by doing this.

    Thank you!

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    25 March 2010

    Linda – It doesn’t matter that headquarters is cutting the checks for pyramid members. The money is being passed from the lower levels of the pyramid to the higher levels, and so it is still a pyramid. It’s nice that MK facilitates things, but what they do doesn’t stop MK from being a pyramid.

    Susan – Itr’s not slander because we speak the truth. And it’s not a vendetta. It is simply a desire to educate women and help them avoid MK.

    Chloe- The links you seek are all on this page already. I’m not going to post them over and over again simply because people are too lazy to read the page.

  • Dana says:
    25 March 2010

    Tracy–As a previous consultant, I know for a fact that money is never taken from lower level members and given to higher level members. That is the definition of a pyramid. Whoever recruits sales team members can earn a percentage of the sales of their recruits, but it does not come from the pockets of the recruits themselves. It comes directly from headquarters.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    25 March 2010

    Yes, corporate collects money from the bottom of the pyramid and distributes it to the top of the pyramid. So yes, the lower level people are paying the upper level people… it’s just that MK is doing the paperwork and distribution of money.

    And no one is paid commission on sales. They’re paid on ORDERS the consultants make. It doesn’t matter if any of those products are actually sold to a customer or not.

  • Steph says:
    26 March 2010

    I’m a current Mary Kay consultant, because I believe in the products, not the lie. It’s true that consultants, directors, et al, use deceptive practices to lure people into buying “the dream”. I was naive, at first. My consultant, who I also thought was a friend, lured me into a team meeting so she could earn her pearls; and I could sample the new products. I agreed, not realizing it was to “brainwash” us into joining. I filled out their form to indicate “0” interest in becoming a consultant. I was again approached from my “friend” to a girls-night out. It was to include pizza, movie, and play with makeup. Again, I found out that I just became a fly in the spiders web. The movie was a recruiting video, surprise! I left early, angry at being deceived; and at myself, for being naive. Why did I sign on? I think the products are great. My skin has never looked better. My allegiance is to my customers, not to my director or anyone else. I don’t attend the brainwashing meetings. I’m not into the hype. I refuse to deceive people, just so I can win some tacky piece of jewelry. No, I’m not making a whole lot; but I am growing a slow, but steady, list of satisfied customers. Oh, and my “friend” does not call me anymore. I’ve found they are only your friends as long as you are doing things the “Mary Kay Way”. I’m doing it my way.
    My point is that not all of us are deceiving. I think the deceptions are primarily responsible for tainting peoples perceptions of the products.

  • Amy says:
    26 March 2010

    So your saying that these women were destsroyed because decided not to continue selling Mary Kay. A little dramatic, ya think? People quit jobs everyday, it doesn’t destroy them. There are great opportunities in Mk. My friend is driving a MK car and makes a good living with it. Just like any sales you have to work at it, it isn’t easy, and it isn’t for everyone.

  • Skater says:
    29 March 2010

    Steph, I like your attitude. I share the same opinion as a MK rep. But we must not be to hard on Tracy. She needs to have something to show for her paycheck as a ‘fraud’ expert.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    29 March 2010

    Funny, Skater. This blog has nothing to do with any “paycheck.” It’s simply a public service I provide to consumers.

  • Steph says:
    30 March 2010

    Tracy, the point is, aren’t you doing the same thing as you accuse Mary Kay of doing? To say they are destroying women is as much of a deception as Mary Kay recruiters telling you that you’ll be rich. It is what you put into it. People have their own minds. If women are choosing to go along with their director and purchase a large amount of products they can’t afford, isn’t that kind of “destroying” yourself? I don’t care for the way some do their business, so I choose to do mine my way. No, I’m not living in a mansion, or jet-setting around the world; but I am proud to say I have a satisfied customer list that continues to grow. Is the company really fraudulent? I don’t know. I do know that, in my group alone, there are single women who are not yet directors; and they make enough to live on their own and have purchased their own house. Is it rare? Maybe, but it can be done. I do know there are others who have way too much inventory (which makes me think they are purchasing products to meet prize demands or goals) it makes me shudder to see it. There’s no black and white here, but shades of grey.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    30 March 2010

    No, I’m not doing anything close to what MK is doing. I am promoting the TRUTH. MK is getting rich on lies. 99% of women lose money in MK and other MLMs, yet MK and its representatives continue to lie about “all the money being made.”

    They can push their crappy “opportunity” as much as they want, so long as they do it truthfully. They have been lying to women for 45 years. That is not okay.

    It sounds great to say we should let women make their own choices. And I DO let them make their own choices. I just provide for them the information that MK lies about and conceals. What they do with that information is up to them.

    And incidentally, I have no skin in this game. There is nothing for me to profit from. In fact, I’ve spent A LOT of my own money on this cause because I believe in it. I’m simply trying to educate consumers.

  • cookie says:
    31 March 2010

    I am a new Mary Kay consultant. I left corporate america this year not at my own hand but due to the capitalist cutting back. I have an MBA. When I investigated home business opportunities for American made products Mary Kay was one of my many options. I did my research. Sales is a profession you get what you give. Rejection is part of it. But you do not quit. To succeed you must love what you do. The author of this article is definately a Toxic individual who lacks
    the courage to be good at what she does. I used mary kay 20 years before I became a consultant. My recruiter drives a pink cadillac and I called her to get my start in mary kay. I donot get this negativity
    My experience has been professional and positive. The business start-up cost fits every-womens budget the profits are immediate. If I choose to rejoin corporate america I can take my mary kay business with me.

  • Lisa says:
    31 March 2010

    No, Tracey, you aren’t providing ANY service to the consumer. You post on this site & complain on
    the other site you set up because you all have an axe to grind & want revenge any which way you can against Mary Kay. If you & other ex Mary Kay employees really feel you have case of fraud or
    misrepresentation on the part of Mary Kay, then why don’t you simply band your tired group together & file
    a class action law suit against MK? And If you feel you don’t have much of a case then it’s time to just leave all Info up for people to access & stop posting & complaining day In & day out. Did anyone of you ever look In themirror & say to yourself ” I goofed?” You have to take personal responsibilty & ask yourself, ” What part did I play In this situation?” Nobody twisted your arm & made you stay for as long as you did. And
    setting up a website just to Bitch & complain about MK everyday Is not healthy either & not the way to handle this. You need to just say your piece & let It go. Chalk It up to experience Instead of you all acting like bitter dried up old witches. All that Is missing Is the pointed hats & a big cauldron for you all to stir. What ever you do, be a grown WOMAN & get over it already. Either sue them or walk it away from it all. It’s put up or shut time, Tracey.

  • Lisa says:
    31 March 2010

    Tracey, If you feel so strongly that MK Is guilty of Misrepresentation, why don’t you just band together & sue them rather than slander on a daily basis?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    1 April 2010

    I have no need or desire to sue Mary Kay. And it’s not slander. It’s the absolute truth both here and at http://www.pinktruth.com. I am proud to be providing access to the truth to so many women.

  • Lisa says:
    1 April 2010

    Sorry Tracy but I disagree. To post an opinion once Is good to purge it & get It out of your system. To continually post rhetoric against ANYBODYthen becomes a SICKNESS. I have seen your site & know what goes on there. Your cabal post day In & day out about MK & If anyone new stumbles In & asks a
    question they are called a “Troll” by one of your group. And If GOD FORBID someone says they are
    an active consultant for MK they would be harrassed for that because they don’t agree with you.
    You do all this under the guise of “Helping” poor dumb women from falling Into the same trap,
    when In reality It Is to get back at MK any which way you can. This Is not the way to handle what happened to you & others. And yes, it’s slander unless you can PROVE IT. Heresay from a disgruntled ex emplyee IS NOT proof.
    I never once saw a subject thread at Pinktruth entitled ” Taking personal responsibilty.” At some point
    dear tracy each of you must ask yourself ” what part did I play In this situation.” After all, no one
    twisted your arm at MK to make you stay as long as you did or Invest your own money. You can’t blame It all on MK, you all have to take some responsibility for yourselves as grown women.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    1 April 2010

    Lisa – You are obviously uninformed about Pink Truth and have clearly not spent much time reading on the site. There are plenty of discussions about responsibility. And I don’t set out to help “poor dumb women.” I am helping women, period. The members of Pink Truth are free to complain about MK as much or as little as they want. I’m not interested in limiting them in that regard. Guests to the site (that means MK lovers) have a set of rules they must follow. They are free to ask respectful questions. They are not free to bash our members or sing the praises of MK. Those activities are better done elsewhere.

    Every fact that I post about MK is true. On many occasions, I have invited MK to point out any falsehoods that I have posted, as I’d be happy to retract and/or correct anything that I’ve posted which is not true. I’m sorry that you don’t share my opinion about MK, but that’s not going to stop me from getting the word out about this abusive company.

  • Lisa says:
    1 April 2010

    And opinion Is not FACT. And by telling people they can’t post “positive” things about MK over there Is putting limitaions on them. And I have read with my own eyes your own members being disrespectful of strangers to the site. Anyone with eyes who has been there can see how defensive any of you gets when someone has an opossing view.
    Furthermore, no one needs your warnings about MK, they should be smart enough to tell for themselves whatMK Is all about. No one needs you or anyone else to tell them what’s good for them.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    1 April 2010

    Lisa – Pink Truth contains both facts and opinions. And please re-read my last comment. I said I don’t put limitations on how much women can complain about MK. Aside from that, yes, there are rules for the site and anyone who cannot follow them is not welcome on the site. Quite simply, the site is not for women who love MK because they are not allowed to sing the praises of MK or disrespect our anti-MK members.

    I don’t think you’re qualified to judge who needs the information I provide about MK. It’s very clear by the number of visitors to the site that people DO need the information. Without Pink Truth, the only information women would get about MK is the propaganda created by the company. I’m happy to balance the scales for them and publish the other side of the story… the dirty little secrets MK doesn’t want women to know.

  • Lisa says:
    1 April 2010

    Well, good luck with your outreach program for former bitter employees who have NO desire whatsoever to take responsibilty for their own actions.

  • Lisa says:
    2 April 2010

    Post #2 since It was deleted for being truthful….

    Good luck with your outreach program for former bitter employees who have NO desire whatsoever to take responsibilty for their own actions.

  • Lisa says:
    2 April 2010

    And of course you are a fraud Investigator & there Is no conflict of Interest In this case…

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    2 April 2010

    Lisa – I love publishing your comments because they’re so silly. Apparently you’re suggesting that I have some “conflict of interest” with my writing about MK. I would love to know exactly what you think that might be. Not only do I NOT have any conflict of interest related to the MK issue, I don’t have anything to gain financially from my pursuit of the truth either. But by all means… please enlighten us.

  • Lisa says:
    2 April 2010

    Tracy, you have conflict of Interest In this fraud Investigation In particular because you are a former
    employee of MK. That makes you BIASED because the subject of MK Is PERSONAL TO YOU. For a critique to be relevant & fair one must be unbiased
    & look at the subject matter from OUTSIDE In an OBJECTIVE way taking ALL FACTS good & bad
    Into account. I hope I have cleared up your confusion on this matter.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    2 April 2010

    LOL Lisa. I was never an employee of MK. Get your facts straight. I was an independent contractor for the company, but that does not create a conflict of interest. It simply means that I know a lot about how the company works. (I guarantee that if I had not been a MK consultant in the past, your argument would be that I have no standing to talk about the company because I was never in it!)

    I’m allowed to have an opinion about MK, and for the record, this is not a “fraud investigation.” I know the facts about the company, and I will continue to write about them and tell people my opinion.

    Thanks for participating, but your time is up here. Time for you to find a new hobby!

  • Blessed says:
    3 April 2010

    Tracy,

    My heart goes out to Lisa. Years after being plunged into the nightmare of Mary Kay Cosmetics, reading comments such as Lisa’s spawns crisp memories of the jaw dropping awe I experienced as I witnessed my wife’s fog induced loss of discernment. This wonderful woman (whom I am so fortunate to have as my spouse) fell prey to the manipulation of her faith, friendship and trust. Ultimately, fortunately, she (we) experienced a collision with reality. We got a harsh, expensive education. We came to see the Mary Kay Cosmetics opportunity as the polished and elegant product based pyramid scheme it is. I’m amazed by the way the MK MLM predator is able to gut its victims while simultaneously prompting them to (at least in the short term) defend it as a wonderful opportunity for women.

    Weeks ago I was at a conference in Texas. Over dinner with a number of colleagues, someone else in my line of work (from the Rockies) mentioned Mary Kay Cosmetics. He and his wife had just turned down for the last time (briskly) a woman from their church who had been hounding his wife and others in the church to “…join Mary Kay as part of her walk with Christ.” The similarities between his story and mine were uncanny. It was almost as though we and our wives were just bit actors in yet another remake of a hackneyed movie plot.

    I want to thank you for your tenaciousness. I thank you for what you’ve done for so many. I appreciate your credibility and your professionalism. I’m so glad there is such a robust presence on the internet clearly warning folks to avoid being victimized by this scam.

    Blessed

  • Dietmar Scherf says:
    5 April 2010

    Tracy is providing an excellent service as she reveals the facts and the big picture about the Mary Kay MLM scam that has ruined the lives and often the marriages of hundreds of thousands or even millions of women for decades.

    Blessed is also saying the right thing and is seeing the big picture. Mary Kay is a pyramid scam just like most other MLMs.

    Some Mary Kay products are very good and even helpful especially in the skin care collection, but other companies offer similar or even the same products … just check the ingredients on the various products. And some other brands are more expensive than MK and then there are other brands that are cheaper than the MK products, … it’s all a matter of comparison.

    The concern are not really the MK products, but rather the Mary Kay MLM methods and the emphasis on recruiting women so that they will spend their money on a MK inventory costing thousands and thousands of dollars. Another gimmick MK has is that it often changes their products in the different lines, either the packaging or the huge amount of discontinued items, and there are also seasonal items, meaning these products are available for only a few months or so and then these are discontinued. The result is that MK consultants have inventory of “old” or discontinued products that are no longer available for sale by Mary Kay, … and all that’s left for the MK consultant is to give these products away as hosting gifts, or use the products herself or if possible sell them at a huge discount if anyone will buy them.

    Another part of the MK scam is that MK consultant have to pay for all advertising of MK products themselves, meaning they have to pay for the catalogs to be sent out if they want their customers or potential customers receive a catalog. They have to foot the expense for all MK promotions they undertake. And MK consultants are not allowed to engage in e-commerce selling their products on their own created websites or on ebay, etc. which many sales of products are generated in our day and age, instead MK consultants can only sign up for a website on MaryKay.com. In case a MK consultant engages in creating their own websites or marketing MK products through various online sites, Mary Kay HQ is fast in sending threatening letters to that MK consultant saying that they will terminate the MK consultant agreement if the MK consultant doesn’t immediately discontinue the not-approved online activities. In short, MK consultants are limited in their marketing endeavors and can’t utilize modern-day forms of sales.
    Overall, the MK sales model is ancient and yes, it was probably the way to do things (going basically door to door) from the 20s to the early 1970s, but today the sales and marketing model of Mary Kay is no longer effective and useful. That’s why so many MK consultants also fail, because today cosmetics products are available in every little store around the corner and on the Internet and it’s a highly competitive business, … it’s almost a given that most MK consultants will fail.

    The Mary Kay company can only make really money when MK consultants recruit new women and then they purchase their inventory, because instead of selling a creme or lipstick, etc. for maybe a total sale of $50 or so, when a new recruit joins, the sales are often $3000 to $5000 for each new recruit, and that’s how the MK company is really making money and that’s how they’re interested in making money. That’s the big bucks selling several thousands of dollars of product to each customer and multiply that by tens of thousands of ladies annually or even a few hundred thousand ladies. But don’t forget, if the MK consultant can’t sell their inventory products fast, the products become dated and therefore old, … so any consumer buying MK products must be careful to really purchase new MK products and not stuff that has been laying around in some MK consultant’s inventory for years. And we know that most MK consultants have “old” inventory laying around, and that product can be dated.

    The biggest toll next to the lost money, are the many hours the MK consultant will spend on “building” her business. Anyone who takes time to calculate the effort and time it takes to make a sale (for the advertising, putting out perhaps little boxes to get names, making the phone calls, the copies and the distribution of promotional flyers, etc.), usually in a MK party format, then the hourly salary isn’t even minimum wage. MK directors like to brag about having a 1-hour party and selling $250 of products, … yeah right, and then they say that they made net $125 in an hour, … and that seems like a good income. Well, it took probably 15-20 hours to prepare and promote that party and probably at least $50 to promote the event, and as a result that’s about $4/hour net if that much at all. And it’s hard to have a party every week, so even $4/hour is a stretch.
    Bottom line, the mom and/or wife is taken from the family and husband for perhaps 20 hours a week making hardly any money just to pursue her dream to get a car (the base model is a Chevy Malibu right now), or to get the trinkets (from the dollar store) or to be crowned “queen” of whatever. It’s all just hype and a vain pursuit. Needless to say that there are always a few that will succeed, and the emphasis is on a FEW while millions over the years just lose money and are left with shattered dreams and often broken homes.
    The FEW that make it are usually MK consultants who work 80-hour weeks and who already have a huge rolodex of friends to get started and who invest thousands and thousands of dollars in making their career come true, and who are just talented sales ladies who know that the big bucks are in recruiting their friends and family and whoever they meet and pushing them to purchase inventory and to just do whatever possible to sell and even more to recruit as many people as possible.

    Also, on the issue of pyramid and levels: it’s a fact that there are different commission levels within Mary Kay and even though the MK HQ sends the checks, nevertheless the MK director collects a percentage on sales of the lower MK consultants and in effect participates in the sales “success” of the MK consultants under her. And then there are the Nationals, etc. and they too live based on the success of their downline, … so it’s just the “normal” or “common” MLM or Pyramid scheme or scam in which the top sales people make the big bucks. Can anyone succeed in selling Mary Kay? No, absolutely not. You need to be a top talented sales person understanding the principle that it takes a lot of recruiting and telling people stories so that they catch the “dream” of becoming like you, a successful person. Forget family or a husband or any relationship, because if you’re serious of trying to make it with Mary Kay, your life as you knew it is gone, because the MK success will become a lifestyle as there’s no time left for anything else but living and sleeping the MK “dream”, …. of course like with everything else in life there’s no guarantee that you’ll ever make it.
    The illusion that the MK “opportunity” is just something on the side for a homemaker to earn some extra income, is just one of the many deceptive advertising gimmicks of MK consultants and directors issued by the MK company. There’s also no such thing as a “free” facial, because the MK consultant only wants to sell items to the potentially new customer as otherwise she won’t sell anything if she just does “free” facials.

    When selling something, we know that in sales not too many are honest, but in order to build a returning clientele a company and/or a sales person need to be honest with their customers, otherwise no business will succeed. And obviously the MK business model is based on deceit, because most promotional MK activities are not honest or do you think that offering a “free” facial with the intention to sell as much product as possible is honest? Or do you think that telling women that they can earn a car and a nice extra income on the side with only a few hours of effort per week and for only a $100 starter kit is honest when in reality they have to invest at least 20 hours per week and thousands of dollars for inventory in order to have even a remote shot at some income which is reality isn’t even worth the effort?

    And much more can be said, but instead of just listening to the MK hype through its directors and consultants and in meetings, anyone seriously considering the MK “opportunity” must know the facts. And it has nothing to do with being negative or bitter, etc, but it has to do with reality and how success works. I became a multi-millionaire at age 28 and I’ve owned dozens of businesses over the past 3 decades, and the most business don’t succeed even with a lot of work and a lot of money, …. there’s simply no guarantee for success. But at least anyone eager to give it a shot at owning their own business, should have the “dream” or vision yes of course, but also needs to face the reality and the facts about that business in order to become successful. And it doesn’t help if someone is telling you only the fake encouragement without the facts or how to really go about it. And yes, in the MK meetings they always tell the stories about how so and so became successful, but please check out the facts about the details of their story, because it’s usually not as easy as it sounds. When spending money and putting a lot of effort into something, you need to do your research and evaluate all the components if one thing or the other is truly for you and that you truly have passion for this or that business and that you’re willing to sacrifice really precious things in your life right now.

    Don’t forget that true success and happiness is not how much money you have or make, although it can be fun and helpful to make a small fortune, but rather true success and happiness is found in the amount of time and the quality of time you’re able to spend with your loved ones.

  • Michelle Clayton says:
    6 April 2010

    I just wanted to say that as a former Mary Kay lady, I was NEVER pushed into purchasing a large order up front. They told me my options and I did not have the money for that so they gave me help on how to best begin my company.

    I am former becasue I did not have enough decipline to run my business, I always had something better to do. I often wish I would have done a better job. If someone reads this who is considering the job, I say go for it! Just make sure you run your business… Open mouth mean open for business, closed mouth… may have very well put a sign up that says out of business.

    Much Luck and Much Love~

  • Nikki says:
    7 April 2010

    Tracy I’m sorry your so bitter. Mary Kay is a wonderful company, I started my business about 6 months ago and have gotten everything I put into X10. I’m making great money, meeting amazing friends, I FINALLY found products that work for my skin (at a great price), and have an amazing confidence that was never there before. I’ve also helped 3 other women to do the same. Lots of women do fail at Mary Kay, it’s because they don’t work with heart and take their business seriously. I can almost guarantee that these same women have struggled or failed at other jobs or school at no fault but their own. I love my Mary Kay business, it is NOT a scam!

  • Caity says:
    8 April 2010

    I’m in love with their products and as far as being a consultant goes, you’re only going to get out of it as much as you put into it. Some are comfortable with being overly pushy and hyped up over the product, where others just go with the flow and let the product sell itself (which it will). Different strokes for different folks.

  • double blessed says:
    9 April 2010

    As a consultant for numerous companies over my 40+ years, I have to say taht Mary Kay has been the best of all MLM’s I’ve been a part of. I work a full time job, raised a family of 3 children and never would I say anything bad about the company. What success I have is from my desire to press on to my goals. Yes, I could use other products, but they don’t work with my skin the way Mary Kay products do. And yes I do make my money without pressuring others to join. I’m not currently actively recruiting, just selling the product to family and friends… it’s what I desire to do at this time with my Mary Kay career. If and when I decide to become a director and have my own team, I will do so with women who love the product and love God, not with money hungry women out to make a buck off any sap that will fall for their schemes. I’ve seen that happen in EVERY company I’ve worked for in one form or another. Yes, this company is one of a kind, but not as bad as the person who is so bitter that they are going to the lengths you see in this article. I’m hoping you don’t do this to every company that upsets your idea of the way things should be. Good luck finding your bed of roses, honey. I’ve found mine and I’m staying there.

  • Craig Hansen says:
    9 April 2010

    With apologies to Jon Stewart, isn’t being “the best of all MLM’s” like being the thinnest kid at fat camp?

  • MKYR says:
    9 April 2010

    Oh my goodness Tracy, I have no words on how to start my comments. I am absolutely astonish to find this site. How sad is to see someone that could use her “desire to help” others the way Mary Kay Ash did but instead prefers to instigate bitter feelings. Well said Caity, Nikki, Cookie and any other I didnt had the chance to read. Some people likes to inspire peace, love and admiration. Others, hate, fight and animosity. I wasnt able to read all the comments, but I could see between the lines that all the ones criticizing Mary Kay are negative individuals. Most probably the type that see the glass half empty. You could use a Mary Kay networking experience. Cookie just like you and thousands of other consultants, I have been using the products for over 15 years and “every” single Mary kay consultant and Director I have met has been a delight and pleasure. People full of positive attittude and energy. Anyway, for those of you that had a bad experience. Sorry to hear. There are always that 5% chance we can fall into. And Tracy, all the best for you to find a more fulfilling topic to share with the world.

  • Heidi says:
    9 April 2010

    Tracy is telling the truth. I was a consultant. I was not recruited, unfortunately. I went in it on my own accord. However, I was highly encouraged to place a larger beginning order because as they say in their training materials, “who wants to shop at a store with empty shelves!”

    I ended up with over $5000 in credit card debt. i can’t place all the blame on MK. I placed the orders. But there was no way I was going to sell everything I bought. The friend I signed up under had to beg others to sign up so she could become a director, but then she quit. It is NOT worth it!!

    Sorry to say I didn’t learn my lesson through this experience. I joined another MLM after MK. I am happy to say that I have now quit that one too and will NOT join another MLM!!! I was not a pushy salesperson. That was a problem. Then you can’t make any money! And who wants their friends to be pushing sales on them all the time?

    Thank you Tracy for educating everyone!

  • Kim says:
    12 April 2010

    Why don’t you check out Auto parts! There is a huge mark up on them and we all get screwed! Heck even our clothing that we buy, everything has a huge mark up! So find more than one business to poke at! Maybe if you would try some MK products, you could remove that stick you got up your ass and realize there are more things in this world screwing you around than a make up company!

  • Get Real, Kim says:
    12 April 2010

    Did you even read anything above your post, “Kim”? The retail markup of MK is not at issue, it’s the slimy tactics used to prey on aspiring consultants to over purchase inventory.

  • Abril says:
    13 April 2010

    While there may be SOME truth to this post it is defintely NOT THE TRUTH! I have been working my business for 2 years and have NEVER been asked to place an order nor was I pressured to purchase inventory. There are many directors in my national area that do not practice those tactics, I think it is very important to get to know your director, recruiter and units philosophies. Since I became a director, in which I didn’t have to beg anyone to join my team, I have not asked anyone to indebt themselves in inventory. People need to take responsibility for the choices they make. NOONE can force you to anything, regardless if it has to do with MK or not. The problem with our society is that we lack accountability. Tough there are negative aspects to any sort of business, people fail to acknowledge that Mary Kay is your own business, and like any business one opens you’re going to have to invest and take a chance at any sort of loss. Look at Toyota for pete’s sake! I don’t think a scandelous company would run for 45 years strong if it was truly as bad as most of the posts make them out to be. Or maybe I’m brainwashed HA ha! That’s my fav…I grew up working for privately owned business so I’ve seen what it takes first hand. I’m having a blast and working my business with ethics!

  • Abril says:
    13 April 2010

    On a side note to those who over invested in inventory, there are alot of ways to sell it to at least make your cost back or sell it back to MK, don’t forget you have an option of a 90% buyback. Take advantage of it if MK isn’t for you. Rather then knock it, research it a little more, perhaps from the companies rules, regulations and practices, not from consultants experiences who had slimy directors who are only in it for themselves. Seriously, would you partner in business with some sleez ball? No right? I know there are some sleezy people not just in the MK business, but in the car business, landscaping business etc. doesnt mean you’re never going to buy a car or sell a car…you just have to be aware!

  • Kim says:
    13 April 2010

    I am a consultant and I’m not sure what kind of slimy people you have come upon, but I’ve never been hounded to buy more! Anyone that has sold MK and went into debt should have had enough self control to say no and put the credit card away. My business does just fine and I have no inventory on hand whatsoever! I order my products as I need them. I think if more people had self control then they wouldn’t be so miserable with the choices they had made!

  • tina says:
    15 April 2010

    i am happy with mary kay products and its sad how people give negative feed back,my consultant has never bonbarrded me to buy and buy come on has anyone hered of self control

  • Kate says:
    17 April 2010

    1) Mary Kay is a pyramid. It is a scam. I was a consultant and was lied to by my recruiter and director and scammed into buying almost three thousand dollars worth of inventory. They told me lies which I believed. It was heartbreaking to discover that it was all a lie because I had been so excited about the “opportunity” when I signed up. When I called them on it, I never heard from them again. No, “Kate, we didn’t lie, tell us why you feel that way…”. Nothing. Silence. Why wouldn’t they call me? Because they knew they lied to me.

    2) Tracy is performing a valuable public service by providing women information that they can’t get anywhere else. Mary Kay is a predatory company. It is a pyramid. The directors are paid commissions on the WHOLESALE ORDERS placed by the consultants below them. In order to be slander, the statements made about the company must be false. What is stated above is not slander because it’s absolutely true. I’ve been there and so have thousands of women.

  • Olivia says:
    18 April 2010

    But there Is a vast difference In suppling Info about a company & actually creating a website
    so former MK consultants can go there & whine about how “MK done them wrong.”
    Whe you share Info you post it once. you don’t then open a whole other forum so people
    can go there everyday & whine negatively about something. It Isn’t being productive Is it?
    And as I’ve seen, they are all very defensive & catty over there & call people names when
    they ask questions, etc. How does anybody justify that behavior? Apparently Tracey does.
    So tracy wastes her time with all this pettiness so you don’t have to. As one former Consultant said,
    you have to remember the Important thing Is to spend time with your family & BE HAPPY.
    Bitchin & moaning on a forum all the time Is strictly for very unhappy people. You can’t be happy
    & do what they do & be that petty. My advice Is to stop worrying what MK & other companies do,
    chalk It all up to experience & move on.

  • Olivia says:
    18 April 2010

    Kate, your Info may be true, but as It’s undocumented, It Is still considered slander.
    Publishing an article once may be of service to others, but tell me how is Is providing service to others to open a whole forum for people to complain on a daily basis? That would seem to be a waste of valuable time when you could be doing something positive & productive. That is no longer
    considered just “providing Info” on a company now Is It? The people on the other forum just come off as petty & vindictive with no life whatsoever —apparently thanks to MK?

  • Rebekah says:
    18 April 2010

    WOW this is crazy to hear, I must first apologize for the unfortunate experience you have had with Mary Kay, but I can assure you that this is not the goal of the company. We are not out there trying to pick up anyone we can to sell, if you are, you are not doing it the Mary Kay way and it does need to be brought to someones attention. Mary Kay is not for everyone to sell, you must have attributes in you that is right for this kind of business. As in any place of business and thats what this is..YOUR OWN personal business, it needs to be ran by what works best for you and how much you want your business to prosper. I personally own two businesses and can assure you that my Mary Kay is so much less stress than the business me and my husband run. I hope this helps a bit.
    Thanks you, Rebekah
    THINK PINK!!!!

  • Blessed says:
    20 April 2010

    Olivia said:

    “But there Is a vast difference in suppling info about a company & actually creating a website
    so former MK consultants can go there & whine about how ‘MK done them wrong.’”

    Dear Olivia,

    You betcha!! There is indeed a difference between Mary Kay Corporation suppling information about “a company” verses a site where survivors can share information readers would otherwise be without. Imagine for a moment information about the “opportunity” was available only through MK consultants and the Mary Kay Cosmetic’s official web site. Well, there would be a few things we’d know for sure:

    – Becoming a MK IBC will enable your husband to retire early
    – Becoming a MK IBC will provide for financial success if only the IBC works hard enough
    – Christ loves you and wants the best for you so you should become a MK IBC
    – bla bla, bla bla, bla bla…

    Yea, I’m all for shutting down an outlet for the “been there, done that, and got the debt to prove it” crowd (sarcastic smirk added). Truth be told, I’m a great fan of the panache displayed by Tracy and PinkTruth.com. She’s not only providing a great public service, but in another context, she’s also simply telling the smarmy, manipulative thugs at Mary Kay Cosmetics, “You f****d with the wrong Marine”!

    Blessed

  • BLA BLA BLA says:
    21 April 2010

    WRINKLES TO YA!

  • Lu says:
    21 April 2010

    It’s been about two months (and many posts) since I posted here, but can any Mary Kay supporters answer my question? I’m looking for a comprehensive list of Mary Kay consultants, but haven’t been able to find one. Sara states (3/7/10) that “the evidence is there”…umm, so exactly where is it? Telling me to “search harder” is very helpful….not. I didn’t see any other MK supporters respond…did I miss it?

    I am trying to confirm if someone is a Queen of Sales, and searched in vain on the Mary Kay site, plus did some Googling for a list. I would think that recognizing valuable consultants (especially top sales) would be a no-brainer. Is Mary Kay ashamed of their consultants, or are the consultants ashamed to be associated with Mary Kay???

    If anyone CAN tell me where I can find the list, thank you!

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    22 April 2010

    Haha… Top sales? No, “Queen of Sales” is not an achievement given for actual sales. It’s given to whoever ORDERS the most product from MK. They don’t actually have to SELL any of it.

  • Kate says:
    2 May 2010

    Lu, you will not be able to find a comprehensive list of consultants. Ever. MK Corporate does not want you to know how saturated the market is.

    “Queen of Sales” is a bogus term. I actually received a newsletter listing me as “Queen of Sales” the first month I placed an order. The newsletter stated that I had sold about $6,000 worth of retail product. I hadn’t actually sold anything at all. Not even one thing. But I had placed a large order with Mary Kay Corporate.

    I guess if you ladies are okay with fudging your ethics and *sometimes* crossing the line and thinking it’s no big deal, then keep on keepin’ on in Mary Kay. I for one cannot stand by and watch other women sink into the financial hole without at least trying to help.

    Thanks Tracy! Keep up the good work!

  • Chloe says:
    6 May 2010

    Then If you all are so Insnsed why don’t you club yourselves together & file a class action lawsuit
    Instead of just complaining to anyone who will listen? Then MK would have no choice but to change the way they do things.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    6 May 2010

    Making the truth about MK publicly available information is actually much more effective than a class action suit.

  • Chloe says:
    6 May 2010

    I don’t think so, seeing their commercials would say otherwise… In other words, they aren’t hurting
    financially.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    6 May 2010

    Who said I was trying to “hurt them financially”???? That’s not what I care about. What I care about it helping women avoid this horrible company. And it’s working. :)

  • Chloe says:
    6 May 2010

    But if MK Is making money, then they apparently have lots of consultants working for them, right?
    Plus, there would be more press about this problem If people file a lawsuit. When the board hosts filed a lawsuit against AOL, it brought a lot of press & made them revamp how they do things.
    That Is making a situation better for all. :)

  • Chloe says:
    6 May 2010

    Also, If you are trying to stop women from being consultants or even buy from the company as you
    have done to LU on this forum, then exactly HOW are you not trying to hurt MK financially? The fact is you are trying to do just that on a small scale. No consultants or buyers means no money. A + B = C .

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    6 May 2010

    Chloe – If you want to start a class action suit against MK, be my guest. My actions have nothing to do with wanting to “hurt” MK. All I care about is helping women, which is exactly what I’m doing. That’s my intent, and that’s what I’m accomplishing.

  • Susan says:
    16 May 2010

    Anyone who calls Mary Kay a “pyramid” or “MLM” needs to pull out a PRINCIPLES OF MARKETING textbook–wrong company structure. Sorry. What Mary Kay Ash set out to do was a very good thing. Go back and read about her being a divorced mom/sole provider of her family back when most women were stay-at-home moms. She worked very hard, accomplished a lot, and paved the way for others to follow in her footsteps.

    However, when she passed away, the company has taken a bit of a detour. There are directors that push to recruit not sell, buy inventory up front, etc. The Mary Kay way is focus on selling product, skin care classes and making money. The others will fall into place when you do things the “right way”. Too many in the company started focusing on the short cuts and that is where a lot of the problems came in. I too got suckered by a pushing director who bought her own way to directorhood (I found that out later). I too have lots of unsold inventory sitting at home–which I have used personally or given as gifts (makes for easy Christmas & birthday shopping)

    I think the liquidators SHOULD be allowed to operate. If gals ended up with a bad director and want out of MK, they should be able to liquidate their products. Anyone who buys them knows they are coming from a liquidator and not the company direct and get a discount for that. It really isn’t hurting the company like they think it is. MK makes great products–especially their skin care. Mediocre products? Hardly. I used to use Clinique for decades–I wholeheartedly converted to MK in less than a week after using the products. I could not believe the huge improvement in my skin and won’t go back. I am 49 and could pass for in my 30’s. Her moisturizers are amazing. And yes, I had a bad director, still have unused product on my shelves, and still use & love her products.

  • Blessed says:
    18 May 2010

    You sound like a gunshot wound patient in the hospital muttering about getting hit in the chest by a “bad bullet.” Hey, nobody will argue it wasn’t the bullet that largely delivered the damage, but wasn’t the bullet just the last in a chain of events that caused the damage? Who is more responsible for your chest wound, the bullet or the entity that loaded the gun and pulled the trigger?

    The miracle of Mary Kay Cosmetics Corporation is the way they’re able to shot so many women in the chest and successfully propagate the myth it was all because of a few “bad bullets.” When, in fact, it is by business model design that so many IBCs get injured. While so many drop out, licking their wounds, struggling to recover from the MK experience, this cult-like entity is miraculously able to line more targets up at the front end of the process and get them to sign up for the dream. You have to gaze in awe; the scheme is ingenious.

    Mary Kay Cosmetics Corporation has been profiting from the victimization of women and their families for so many years. The MLM paradigm is inherently flawed as the vast majority who enter the pyramid eventually exit injured financially (and in other ways). And so interestingly, too often, victims of this assault mutter about the glory of the company and identify only “a few bad directors” as the cause of the problem. At some point you’ve got to stop merely pulling the bodies from the river and go upstream to see who’s throwing ‘em in.

    Blessed

  • Clara Czegeny says:
    22 May 2010

    Oh my gosh – don’t let me get started. I was one of those pathetic insecure women who bit the Pink Cadillac myth 2 times – at each stage of my life no less. Once at 27, then again at 37. What an idiot. At 27, headed to Calgary with the boom and got mixed up with that unit. It was the mud-slinging contest between a Dr’s wife and a unsuspecting tall and very pretty single mom. The hype, the lies, the fake stories, I was sick to my stomach. And I became the director’s best friend – who knew? I heard the inside stories on having to pay for the leased Cadillac if the orders were not up there. Recruiting was the huge thing. I am surprised we didn’t follow in the path of some cults – door to door! I was given a bunch of skincare profiles from a director (who quit) to try to get my business going. I even quit my full time job as an executive secretary for three CEO’s. Success story – NOT!

    At 37, had graduated from Teacher’s college and because gov’t $ was tight for hiring, did some supply-teaching for a bit. During that time – I thought, why don’t I fill my days with Mary Kay. I became a rising star in weeks and again – the Director’s best friend (what is up with that?. I won the Cadillac at least once a month for booking facials. Single supply-teacher with Mary Kay career in the back-pocket.
    My director buffered my orders so that I would win something. I did win Queen’s court of sales. Boy – just call me Ms. Buffet. Ha ha – that is funny!

    So after all is said and done, it WAS fun, but at the end, (after getting her invoices for owed orders) and after doing some serious soul searching – I realized $ wise, the only people making money was Mary Kay. The consultants were constantly having to re-stock their shelves with new limited special products, new shades, new compact shapes – my goodness – get it figured out – will it be round or square or diamonds this season?

    The sad part is that we as women, all want to be part of something successful. We want to be recognized for things we do well. As Mary Kay put it – when a woman falls, we need only talk about how “gracefully” she fell. She’s right, but come on, how phony do we have to be to look successfull?

    And the Fake it till you Make it philosophy doesn’t hurt others, but it does make things kind-of shady back home. Being honest with yourself is key. Continually lying to others about how successful you are is not in good taste – no matter what shade of pink you are wearing!

    Clara Czegeny
    Author of Helen’s Hungarian Heritage Recipes. (free recipes at http://hothungarianchef.blogspot.com/)
    PS – finally found something I was good at.

  • Melissa says:
    28 June 2010

    I am so surprised to see this. I feel like this was done to me. This makeup is not a miracle. It made my face WORSE. I can’t push the product if I told people it was on sale. No one wants to spend that much money on their face, and if they do, they are crazy.

  • Love Mary Kay says:
    29 June 2010

    I could not believe this as i was reading it. i have been a consultant for 10 months now, and have never regretted it once, dont you release when you order $3000 of stock, you have to sell it to make money and to sell it you have to share it with other women. my director is a lovely lady and have enjoyed every minute in this company, of course u have ur down days, but thats what your team members and directors are for, to support you and get u back on ur feet.
    im sorry that some of you ladies have had a bad experience with mary kay whether it was as a consultant or with the product, people have to realise that every cosmetic product can suit every type of skin, even the most expensive products still have people react to them. mary kay tests all products on hundreds of thousands of faces to get the best quality product, what else can you ask for.

  • Blessed says:
    30 June 2010

    “what else can you ask for. [sic]”

    What else can I ask for? Well, for starters it would be nice if Mary Kay Cosmetics could muster the gumption to simply, for their sales force and prospective IBCs, answer the questions presented in the FTC’s Proposed Business Opportunity Rules. But no, they’ve advised the FTC such candor could prevent them from continuing to victimize (sorry, I mean “recruit”) as many women.

    What else could I ask for? If they’re really interested in selling makeup and related products, why not simply adopt a business model other than the MLM model (which victimizes the vast majority of its participants). Largely, this company does not sell cosmetics, it sells “business opportunities.” This is a product based pyramid scheme. If MKC is going to continue to sell makeup and creams, etc., I’d like to ask for a business paradigm that doesn’t rely on the scams so common to the MLM business model. Just sell the products, on line, in stores, via catalog, etc.

    What else could I ask for? Stop manipulating women through promotion of earnings expectations that, largely, never materialize; stop encouraging women to enmesh themselves into this MLM, and recruit others, as an adjunct of their evangelical Christian faith. Grow a sense of shame. And MKC, stop slinging BS by your continued claim you’re not responsible for the machinations of those in your “independent” sales force. Such a meager attempt at constructing minimally plausible denial ability should embarrass you.

    Being a Mary Kay Cosmetics survivor (husband), there are many other things I could ask for but just the above would be a great start.

    The best I could ask for is that women and their families become more and more aware of the public relations savvy of Mary Kay Cosmetics Corporation. MKC does little more than exploit women for profit. Yes, it seems to me that when it comes to exploiting women for profit, Mary Kay Cosmetics Corporation takes a backseat only to pornography.

    Shame on you MKC!

  • Rosemary says:
    6 July 2010

    From what I can see, Mary Kay is no different from Amway or pampered chef or Tastefully Simple. They all work the same and we all make our own decisions to join or not. For some people, it is a great oppurtunity, but not all are cut out for it.

  • EDNA FARIS DUST says:
    6 July 2010

    Have you ever been to a Mary Kay jamboree? If you haven’t, you must go. You will truly be inspired by
    the power of women. It is simply amazing to look around the room and see “real” beauty. Beauty in the sense of different sizes, shapes, style, nationality, and religion. The majority of women are educated and have choosen to have Mary Kay as their career. Each seminar and or meeting I have attended, I have learned something that I use daily in my personal and professional life. I have been in Mary Kay for 12 years. I joined the business, not to make money, but because I believe in their product. I am 61 years old. People ask me what my secret is to looking so young. I always say….
    It’s my Mary Kay!

  • shannon says:
    6 July 2010

    first of all if anyone knows anything about Mary Kay they are not about make up the most important thing is skin care. there is not supposed to be pushing to recruit because if we recruited everyone, who would be our customer, so we appreciate those who do not want to join but stay loyal customers and those who fail, fail because of there lack of work, it is not a get quick rich program it all depends on how much work you individually want to put in. Mary Kay is just like any other products there are going to be people who prefer other things and people whom it doesn’t work for, but there are millions who it does work for including myself i have seen those who are not at all pushy go along way and i started my business with no inventory it is not necessary i sold as i went along, inventory is a choice but yes it is an advantage for any business to have it already so you don’t have to wait for delivery. i have done well and built up my inventory as i went along it is not sitting on my shelves not being resold and i have made money all along. if someone is pushy then just find a consultant who is more the personality you would like there are millions of personalities out there i think people need to the research for them selves to find out that we are multi-level company not pyramid and make there own decisions just know that it is not quick and easy it is work determination and self disciplining work that if you don’t do any thing you wont make any thing

  • Scrib says:
    9 July 2010

    “There is not supposed to be pushing to recruit…”

    And yet they push IBCs to recruit do because they HAVE to. No recruits with qualifying ($600+) orders, nobody gets promoted to the upper echelons, period. Such is the Mary Kay way IF you want to become a Director and beyond. There is PLENTY of pushing to recruit in MK culture and the emotional motivators are LEGION, my friends. Here’s a small sampling:

    “If you worked your business at all this week and didn’t talk about the opportunity, you are indeed guilty…last year, the top director earned over $400,000…are you choosing to deny [your potential recruit] an opportunity to earn that kind of income?” ~NSD Lynda Jackson in the document “Why We Don’t Ask.”

    “Think of recruiting as a gift.” ~ FESSD Leah Lauchlan’s New Consultant packet

    “Not to share would be selfish.” ~FESSD Auri Hatheway, Applause, Jan 07

    And one of my favorites, the VERy Go-Give “What if a potential says “no” to the opportunity?” response from former ESSD turned SSD Linda Quillin’s document, “Giving Away Your Career”:

    “If she says NO to this…tell her thank you for allowing me to share, but say an even bigger thank you prayer to God, for sparing you a not-so-sharp, unwilling to change woman that has a bigger hang-up than what Mary Kay can help!”

    Wow, that prayer’s reminiscent of the Pharisee’s prayer in Luke 18, isn’t it? “God, I thank thee, that I am not as all the lazy loosers are, extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this potential recruit who had the gall to tell Mary Kay Ash NO. I fast twice in the week because the damned skin care class ran long, I give tithes of all that I possess at month’s end to meet my production, and share the Mary Kay opportunity with all I come across, so let it be written, so let it be done.”

  • Nickie says:
    10 July 2010

    I attended a MK “party” a couple of months ago as a favor to a friend. The “consultant” spent 75% of the time telling us why we should sell MK and 25% showing us the products. I bought 1 (overpriced) item. It took a month for it to be delivered and now after a couple of uses it literally stinks. Smells awful when you open the container. High price for low quality! I’ll stick to buying name brands at WalMart.

  • Jenn says:
    12 July 2010

    wow that was the most disguisting thing I have ever read in my life!!!! Obviously you have NO idea what the Mary Kay business opportunity stands for. We are all about showing women a way to have freedom, flexibility, make money, and have a stable home life. The priorities of the company are Amazing and I feel sorry for women like you who are bitter and negative….. sounds to me like you could use a “pink bubble” of your own.

  • Megan says:
    22 July 2010

    Tracey is absolutely correct!! I am a previous Mary kay consultant who decided to join in after my sister and bought a large inventory and now have tons of it that still needs to be sold. My director wasnt good, seems how if i wasnt pulling in money or ordering she wouldnt even bother to email me or call me to check up and make sure things were ok with me. This company is definatley a scam to recruite people and then the majority of them wind up quitting, unless you are one of those consultants who has a good customer contact base. I have tried and tried to sell my products and no one really wants to pay the retail price. I believe when I started selling Mary Kay I sold some at retail and then shortly after just kept giving discounts to get the products out so I could pay off my credit card bill that I have just from these products in my inventory. I was completely distraught at how this company is handled, as it may not be how Mary Kay wanted her business to run; the company is being run in a way that hurts others who are just tryin to get some extra income to pay bills, but instead im trying to find a way to pay off the bill for my Mary Kay inventory instead!!! RIDICULOUS!!!!!

    Megan

  • Jennifer says:
    16 August 2010

    Wow. I got sucked in too. I have always loved the product, and as a buyer I thought how great to share with others and get a discount on my own product. I got sucked in by someone that I called friend. My director. I went to the 1st weekly meeting in a business suit. I looked like a knockout and a professional. But I was made fun of by 3 directors that said I looked masculine in pants. I was made the laughing stock in front of all those women. I look like 100% woman. I was told that I had to wear skirts no exceptions. I found this to be a LIE!! I was supposed to be an independent contractor not a worker on someone’s time clock. So I was pressured to buy a huge wardrobe, and product. I did great my first month because my family and friends supported my idea of making a little extra money to help the family budget. That and I had bought in to the hype of making my own schedules and having time with my kids. That was all bull s*%t!!!! So not only did I waste a ton of money I’ll never get back but I was publicly humiliated at the meetings. You couldn’t drag my dead body back into this excuse for a business. I went back to school and will get a real job where I won’t be publicly humiliated by 60 something catty women ever again.

  • Christine says:
    23 August 2010

    I was just researching Mary Kay Cosmetics when I came across this website. I must say, after reading the comments, and the intent of this website, I am concerned. I am concerned that Tracy has now made it her life’s work to save women from Mary Kay Cosmetics. My question to you Tracy is, “Do you have such little confidence in women that you have to be our business savior?” “Are we not as intelligent as you, so you have to save us from making such a terrible decision?”

    If there are women that are not business savvy enough to see thru what is in their best interest and what is not, then they have no business, being in business. And here is another fact…most small businesses that are started in the U.S. fail within there the first 5 years. Why don’t you speak out about that Tracy? Why do you limit your sights on just one Company? Why don’t YOU tell the truth about the failure rate of most start up companies. Why don’t you site the high turnover rate for all the multi level marketing companies.

    I am in the insurance business. Most new agents will fail their first 3 years in the business. Many will file business and personal bankruptcies. Why don’t you write about that?

    The real truth is…it doesn’t matter if you go into Mary Kay, another multi level company, become an insurance agent, or open a small business, there is risk involved, there is a financial commitment, and only the strong, intelligent and skilled person will survive and make it. Now that is the whole truth.

    And Tracy…this website is making you money too. So who is scamming who.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    24 August 2010

    Christine – Thank you for your questions. My goal is not to be a “savior.” My goal is to disseminate information that has been hidden for more than 40 years. For over 40 years, Mary Kay thrived because of a code of silence. No one could get their hands on information about success and failure rates in Mary Kay, and no one could get the negative facts about the company. This site and pinktruth.com has changed all of that. If women want to research MK before they sign up, I provide information for them. Hopefully it helps them in their decision-making process.

    I have talked about failure rates in real businesses, and they’re not nearly as high as the astronomically high failure rates in MLM. This site is not about legitimate businesses such as insurance sales, which is why I don’t discuss that at length.

    Other MLMs are discussed on this site and on Pink Truth. Please have a look around.

    What gives you the idea that this site makes money, and what gives you the idea that I am scamming someone?

  • Blessed says:
    24 August 2010

    I agree with Christine. Com’on Tracy. Give it a break will ya? I mean, who really needs unfiltered information from a competent, experienced and credentialed fraud investigator about …. well… fraud. Who really needs to be warned about a wonderful business opportunity by the multitudes who have been too stupid to run their businesses like businesses? We all know any woman can be successful in Mary Kay if she just tries hard enough! Who really has time for the negative people who are preoccupied with things like market saturation, product changes, exploitation of personal faith, bla bla, bla bla, bla bla!

    Com’on, folks don’t need to worry about that stuff! What ya need to know is all right there in the Mary Kay Corporation literature; just read it (preferably after a candle lighting ceremony). Why should any perspective Mary Kay Consultant have to sort through the esoteric stuff people post on your site? After all, your director gives you all the information ya need. Can’t you just allow yourself to “believe”? Really Tracy, don’t you have any dreams? After all, the “husband unaware program” provided me with all the information Mary Kay Corporation wanted me to have during my stint as a MK husband. And hey, that lack of detail meant less stress too! Yes, ignorance CAN be bliss! And perhaps most importantly, you know God wants you to be all you can be! So, you really should be a Mary Kay Consultant and accept this opportunity as the gift it is.

    And finally, we all know what you’re selling; we all know the product you’re peddling. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black, you and your sites criticize Mary Kay Corporation for the tactics they employ to deceptively manipulate women and their families into suffering significant financial and other losses while you yourself are selling… you’re selling… wait a second… You’re not selling anything are you Tracy. Mmmmmm.

    Please hang in there girl. You provide a wonderful public service!

    Blessed

  • larry says:
    24 August 2010

    I’am one of the brainwashed husbands you speak about . I am very proud of my wife and the unit she has . she takes pride and guards her people well . yes there are people in the company that are bad and will take advantage of others but you have to be a real loon to think all are like that. the company has a legal dept. and it is open to any and all to help solve problems.
    larry

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    24 August 2010

    Unfortunately, Larry, the system is designed to cheat 99% out of their money. It doesn’t matter if the upline *thinks* they’re being honest. The whole system is a scam, and so the participants are being scammed with almost no hope of turning a profit in this bogus business.

  • Christine says:
    24 August 2010

    Tracy,
    Why do I think your site is making money? Your site is selling your books, and your site has an advertiser. Research blogging and there are all kinds of opportunities to make money on a blog site, which is exactly what you are doing, as you are aware. Only you are wrapping it up as a nice package of good intentions and selling this to your audience as a public service warning from a “Fraud Expert”.
    Why else would you be doing this if not for the money? No one would spend this much time and effort unless there is financial gain. Ethical Fraud Investigators would not spend their time and effort on something so trivial and this is trivial. I suspect my conclusion is correct. This is about financial gain for you!
    That’s why you don’t focus on the 300,000 + people that have lost “millions” of dollars on franchises that closed in the last 5 years. This is a much bigger audience for you, isn’t it? I cannot empathize with women who placed emotional orders on their credit cards for a few thousands of dollars. Not everyone graduated top of their class. These ex Mary Kay women, were not business women, and they are certainly not the victims you make them out to be. We ALL have to take responsibility for our decisions, good and bad. That’s called being an adult, not a victim.

    You are misleading women, and absolutely are insulting the intelligence of our gender. Tracy, you have made this whole vendetta about you. AND the definition of vendetta is a prolonged bitter quarrel with or a campaign against someone. Need I say more. You are cash’n in on this.

  • Christine says:
    24 August 2010

    Tracy Coenen says:
    24 August 2010 at 4:38 pm
    Unfortunately, Larry, the system is designed to cheat 99% out of their money. It doesn’t matter if the upline *thinks* they’re being honest. The whole system is a scam, and so the participants are being scammed with almost no hope of turning a profit in this bogus business.

    Really Tracy?? And you think your site is a legitimate business? oh, that’s right…you are the expert. I think you have set yourself up for a pretty profitable scam yourself. How much did you make off your site last year? is another MLM competitor compensating you for this little site of yours? Oh that’s right..you are “THE” fraud investigator. You wouldn’t be committing fraud yourself, would you.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    24 August 2010

    LOL Christine. No “ethical fraud investigator” would spend their time on MLM without making money from it???? Wow. Just when I thought I’ve heard it all…

    Yes, it is possible to make money from blogging. No, I do not make money from this site, and it’s not my intention to make money from the site. The advertising on this site and on pinktruth.com doesn’t come close to paying for even the basic costs of both sites. I provide both sites simply as a public service to consumers.

    Yes, Christine, I’ve written two books and they’re both for sale. Neither of them are written for people involved in MLMs. So while they are shown here, they have virtually nothing to do with MLMs.

    Obviously you’re not familiar with a person having an interest in a topic. There is no vendetta. There is nothing to have a vendetta about. I simply got sick of Mary Kay taking advantage of women who can least afford it, so I made a commitment to put the facts from the “other side” out there so women who were interested in researching MK could do so.

    If you have an interest in franchises, then by all means, pursue that interest and research it, write about it, or do whatever your heart desires. Just don’t put that on me. I don’t have to be interested in franchises just because you say it is a more worthy cause than MK. Everyone has their own ideas of what is worthy of someone’s time. I’ll choose mine, and I’ll be happy to let you choose yours.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    24 August 2010

    No, Christine, this website is not a business. It’s a website, and that’s it. I use it to provide information about my company, as well as to blog about topics of interest to me. No MLM compensates me because I don’t wish to have any financial ties to any MLM. I write about topics here because they interest me, and nothing more.

  • Christine says:
    24 August 2010

    Tracy,
    LOL…I know how blogs work and you are deceiving your audience by suggesting you are not making a dime on this website, especially, the advertisers that are listed on your blog. You are being paid Tracy, why pretend otherwise. You said…

    “No, I do not make money from this site, and it’s not my intention to make money from the site. The advertising on this site and on pinktruth.com doesn’t come close to paying for even the basic costs of both sites.” You are contradicting yourself.

    I think I have heard it all too..that a woman, such as yourself, makes it her life mission to “protect” us little women from our unintelligent decisions. You are not providing another point of view, or an area of research from a professional position. You are not performing a public service. You are feeding your obsession. You said it yourself, ” I simply got sick of Mary Kay taking advantage of women who can least afford it”. Your ego interferes with professionalism.

    I think your personal vendetta is not only dysfunctional, but extremely unprofessional. This is about feeding your ego…and not about helping women research a company. If that is truly your intent, then you will present both sides, the positive and negatives, instead of “your” perspective.

    It is clear, you choose your words carefully, so your audience doesn’t catch on to what your sites are really about….$$$$$$$

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    24 August 2010

    Christine – Thank you for sharing your concerns. As I said, the advertising on my sites doesn’t even pay enough to cover the basic costs of having the sites up and running. This is not about money. It’s about an interest and expertise that I have. Unfortunately, I’m not aware of any positive things about MK, so I don’t have any to print. Your judgmental words won’t change what (or why) I do with this site and Pink Truth. Thousands of women have been helped by the information my sites provide, and that’s enough reward for me… as well as proof that the information on my sites is both needed and wanted.

  • Christine says:
    25 August 2010

    Tracy…my point is you continue to contradict yourself. You are making money on the website. Everytime this website is accessed…cha ching, you make money. Everytime someone clicks on one of your advertisers..cha ching, you make money. Everytime you sell a book from your website, cha ching you make money. Why do you do this dance to your audience that poor little ‘ol you is not making a dime on this website & all you want to do is help the women of America to stay away from big bad Mary Kay Cosmetics. Why would anyone lose money on a website to help support an agenda? They wouldn’t.

    Speaking of judgements…you are all about judging. I think I will start a website called Coenen Fraud Truth. I will expose the truth about you and your hidden agendas. Tell you audience Tracy, how much you make each year off of Pink Truth and this website, since you are all about full disclosure. Let’s all find out how much money you are supposedly losing.
    I just find it absolutely comical that you “expose” Mary Kay Cosmetics, but you think you are ethical with a website that makes money off of others misfortune, because you wrap it in a nice package of wanting to help. LOL!!

  • Christine says:
    25 August 2010

    I might add…in your opening statement of this blog you state….”To many, my fight against Mary Kay Cosmetics is puzzling. Why would I want to waste my time with it? ”

    Interesting…you point out, “why would I waste my time”, but what you did not say is, why would I waste my time and money? You didn’t say time and money, because you would be caught in a lie. The Tracy Coenen truth is you are making a significant amount of money off this website and Pink Truth. You are nothing more than an opportunist. Disclose your financials on your websites Tracy…set the record straight. Your audience deserves to know. You want Mary Kay to fully disclosure, we want the same from you.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    25 August 2010

    Christine – You’re obviously not interested in listening to what I have to say, or in having a rational conversation, so this will be your last comment on the site. I do not contradict myself. My message and the facts are consistent and I have nothing to offer you but the truth.

    Just because you wouldn’t spend money on a site like this, doesn’t mean someone else won’t. I don’t make money each time someone accesses this site. I make a small amount of revenue from the advertising when people click on it, but it has never come close to generating enough revenue to even pay the basic costs of keeping this site and Pink Truth running. Yes, indeed, I do lose money on these sites, but I keep them running because they are important to me. I’m not going to provide the financial details because they don’t matter. I’m not asking you to pay part of the cost. I’m not asking you to become a member of anything. I’m not asking you to do anything whatsoever in regard to this site, so I owe you nothing.

    I have never made money off any website, and I don’t make money off anyone’s misfortune. I provide information, and I bear all the costs of running the sites, and I have contributed hundreds of hours of my time for free in order to help get information out there. Nothing you say changes that. There is no agenda. There is no money-making opportunity. It’s simply something that I do because I want to.

    Thank you for your interest in my websites, and best of luck to you.

  • Blessed says:
    26 August 2010

    Christine,

    You’re killing me here! Yet another episode of Tracy C. is evil? Oh please, someone tell me there’s an original tactic about to be deployed by those shilling for the pink dream! Please! Talk about making money, it seems to me if Tracy C. earned a nickel, just 5 cents, every time some shill claimed she was the cold, dark, dream killing princess from hell (add your favorite aspersion here), she would indeed be rich! Sit down, take some time, and for God’s sakes come up with an original idea will ya!?! In the Mary Kay Cosmetics opportunity debate, slapping around Tracy C. is just getting a bit old isn’t it?

    Your comments poke at the silly child inside me. Your taunts prompt thoughts of how enmeshed in the fog and naive you must be. But such assumptions on my part do, truly, reveal the child in me. I may as well be talking about myself (and my wife). We were consummate shills for the Mary Kay Cosmetics dream. We were passionate, we were wrong, we were duped.

    Bottom line: It’s not about you or me or whether Tracy C. makes any money from folks when they click on a banner while visiting her sites (you make me chuckle). It’s about a corporation profiting handsomely from the institutional exploitation of women’s trust, their faith, their friendship… It’s about a company that feverishly fought the Federal Trade Commission’s efforts to curb the rampant victimization of its customers (yes the IBC is the real MK customer). It’s about getting the word out, informing women and their families about this cult-like entity.

    While some people in this country may claim otherwise, the fact is the task of caring for those in need, providing for those who’ve made a mistake, helping people recover from loss, is not solely the providence of government. Such matters are addressed, largely, by the private sector, individuals, individuals who form groups… Consider Mother’s Against Drunk Drivers, The Red Cross, the American Cancer Society. These organizations are comprised of good people dedicated to a cause, interested in making things better, or (in some instances) people who’ve simply decided enough is enough! Somehow I’m confident you CAN imagine such dedication to a cause absent remunerations. In my view PinkTruth.com is an example of such dedication.

    So then, I remain hopeful Tracy C., and her wonderful content contributors, will continue their dedication to helping women injured by the MK opportunity, and helping others avoid injury all together. Such an outlet is truly a public service.

    Blessed

  • Roxie says:
    23 September 2010

    Hi Tracy,

    I just wanted to say thank you for this site and for PinkTruth.

    A MaryKay consultant recently approached me. She was very personable and left me a voicemail immediately after our conversation, so I thought why not go check it out. She said this part of MaryKay wasn’t about parties and sales but about leadership and personal enrichment, I didn’t have a reason not to believe her.

    I went to the recruitment meeting a few days ago. It was held is a conference room at a very nice hotel. All of the women were very pleasant, polite, and immaculately dressed. Before the meeting started they each came up to the front if the room to give us their very impressive credentials, former corporate ladder climbers and executives ect. Then the lead director (I guess that’s what they called the lady with the most sales) came in and told us about what a great company Mary Kay is and how much they are enriching and empowering women. She read off numerous magazines reports on Mary Kay’s booming profits and about how this recession was only getting worse. She brushed over the starting cost and then told us about all her tax write offs. She told us about all the cars, trips and bonuses you can win and showed off her diamonds. She even told us how she got started by charging her starter kit on her credit card because she didn’t have the cash and look where she is now! And for the finally she told us about 3 or 4 women who were making millions, bragged about where they lived and what kinds of cars they are driving.

    Now I thought this all sounded GREAT! Your own home business and all of these clearly successful woman who want to help you get what they obviously have?! Why the heck not?!

    But I am not the type of person to just write anyone a check. If I’m going to invest in something I am going to need to know about more than what other people have. They never said how they made all this money. No one ever explained how any of this worked. They said you have to start at the bottom but you don’t have to throw parties. You just pay for this starter kit and we’ll help you from there.

    So the presentation ends and something about these women change as we break into our little groups. There is this fierce focus on their faces as they zero in on their specific people. I tried to talk to the lady who just told us all these wonderful things, I wanted to tell her how much I related to her former situation; she was short and dismissive. So I went to my little group instead, she hands us two pieces of paper, one looked like some kind of sign up form, which I only glanced at because I knew I was quiet ready to sign up. The other was a list very long list of woman and how much money they were making.
    The first question I ask the director of our group is is, would it be possible to learn more about what exactly you guys do before I give you $100 for the starter kit? She say’s well we can’t train you until you buy the kit. I said well I would really like to know more about what I would have to do before I pay for a kit. She promptly takes my sign up paper and says, there’s a training meeting on Monday, you can come back and see what we do. Thank you for coming have a nice evening. And I was shut out of the little group.

    Since I didn’t get very far with her, I thought maybe she was just rude and I would contact the lady who originally approached me because she seemed very nice. She’d called three times to make sure I was going to the meeting and I had directions so I figured she be helpful. I was still really excited about the possibility of joining this seeming wonderful company and was really looking forward to getting more information, which is exactly what I told her in my e-mail and voicemail.

    I still haven’t heard back, which sent me looking for information online and to your websites.

    So again thank you! You saved me from making a very big mistake! I had even convinced my fiancé to let me try MaryKay to get some extra money for our wedding next Oct. If it hadn’t been for the information I found on your site I would have jumped head first into this new “career” and probably would have fallen flat on my face.

    Roxie

  • Misty says:
    30 September 2010

    I have to say that this is terrible, I have been in MK off and on for yrs. I have never had any director trell me that I need to purchase a room full of inventory. They tell you that some do and some do not and that is fine. There is nothing wrong with that. Please, on the cost have you purchased any cosmetics at a Dept. store ? OMG… they are double the price of MK. Find yourself another story this is so childish. The clothes we put on our bodies daily are so jacked up and the food we eat… has gone up… the parts for cars are doubled…MK has not changed the prices in a long time. Go wast your time on a Auto parts store then let us know what you fine.

    enjoy your day,
    Misty

  • Lizzie says:
    1 October 2010

    I don’t think you really know what you are talking about. You talk about women’s lives being destroyed, when all the evidence simply states that they left the company. Why does that equate to having their lives destroyed in your mind? I tried Avon in the past, I didn’t like it and I gave it up. Was my life destroyed? No, did I loose some money, yes. Quit trying to make the company sound worse than it actually is. Just because you use “facts” and numbers in your repetitive article, doesn’t mean you are actually saying anything useful. Thank you for increasing my interest in Mary Kay, because that is all you have done here.

  • C. K. says:
    6 November 2010

    Hi, I recently was invited to an acquaintanc’s “ribbon cutting” at a local chamber of commerce office for the “grand opening” of her new business. I did not know she was beginning a Mary Kay beauty consulting business. So I went and enjoyed looking at the products. Of course I have been to Mary Kay meetings before in the distant past, so knew I’d be “hit up”, but have my own “spiel” down to say no, and blame my husband. I was offered a “complimentary facial” which I took and enjoyed. Being older I could much easier see that the sales pitch was to recruit me for a $75 November special on the basic sales package, which I declined, again because my husband would say “no”. I was told by the new consultant, as I had been told by her supervisor, that “sometimes you just have to override your husband”…and that “most husbands just want their wives to be happy”…I was also told that “sometimes it’s better to ask for forgiveness than to ask for permission”, and “just do it” in regard to signing up. My reason is real; my husband is a tax accountant and he really will have a war with me if I sign up for something like this. I do not have an income and would prefer not to end up in divorce court over Mary Kay, when I have a relatively peaceful marriage; Should I take their advice and just start challenging him on everything, and we did end up divorcing (prob. we would’nt we have a very happy marriage, but just for the scenario, “if”…), then I’d have a terrible life because I have not worked in 20 years and have no significant job skills since I have been a wife, mother and home-maker for 20 years. I don’t want to trade in my posh lifestyle provided by my suband because Mary Kay Consultants have encouraged me to challenge my peaceful marriage, or put my husband in his place. He earns a 6 figure income and all my bills ar paid, why on earth would I put that in peril over a Mary Kay job just because some other consultant’s husband “let’s her do anything she wants” and that “she used to have a controlling husband just like mine”. She also has a professional career and is capable of earning $300/hour in her professional industry (law/physician/accountant, etc.), and I can’t do that, and most women who get recruited can’t either. They also tried to compliment me by telling me what a great sales person I’d be and so on. I have to relate all these “manipulations” with religious recruiters today. I attend Southern Baptist Churches in the Bible Belt, and I know the sales pitch well, because these same lines are used to get people to join up, and donate skads of time and money to the building fund at church, and once in, they never let up on you. If you refuse to buy into the bible study book program, look out, you are snubbed like you are a real outsider. I once let the Mormons in, and sweet as they seem, one of the missionaries told me in all seriousness, that my decision was between God/heaven and my marriage, and I’d best select the Mormon Church over my marriage or I’d not be “saved”. I’d like to say that recruiting tactic #57 is “disparage the recruits’ husband, make her feel like she’s a doormat if her husband does not permit her to join up, and make sure she knows how much she’s missing if her husband holds her back.” I do not think any organization, religious, business or otherwise, that instructs a woman to challenger her husband when he is her only financial and health insurance support is a worthy organization. Perhaps not all Mary Kay consultants do this, but I wager that this tactic is actually taught in recruiting classes, and is not just a fluke. I believe this because I long suspected that the phrase “you don’t fit in here” used at church was a taught phrase to get rid of boat rockers at church was taught, and discovered I was right when I ran a women’s bible study and was specifically instructed to tell class members who ask to many questions that they “don’t fit in”, in order to get rid of them nicely, and I have been told this specifically a time or two which was very hurtful over the years; but now I know it is a spiritual abuse and control tactic, just as the “bad husband” tactic is used by Mary Kay to get recruits to challenge their husband and let Mary Kay take their husband’s hard earned money. Women can be extreemly cruel to one another, and even more so wen they are “trained” to manipulate women into abiding in order to get their money. Church and Mary Kay are both organizations in the Bible Belt that want your money. They both operate on the same agendas. The “Dispariging Her Husband” technique is an officiall, trained tactic used to gain power over unsuspecting women who will feel like they are the only ones who have a bossy husband and will go home and ahve a fight with their peaceful home life in order to prove to an organization that they are “independent”. If they go that route they may well become independent. I personally feel that any product worth selling will sell itself and one does not need to recruit people or push a product. The sales pitch certain is the selling of a consultant’s kit instead of a lipstick. Although $75 is not that much money, there is alot of other things a woman can do with it, and still have makeup. I bought myself a $20 pack of Tarot Cards and have made alot more money than I could with Mary Kay, by learning to use them, and being the entertainment at parties around my area, and seeing private clients for readings. In my scenario, I never have to replace my stock, and the client leaves with a good visual experience and a chance to talk about her problems. I never manipulate and have a straight fee of $20/20 minutes, something I don’t feel I’m robbing anyone of, as that’s usually lunch or movie money for most women, and many are interested in their Tarot reading at least once in their lives. I don’t have to answer to any company and I can sign up with any company or other business I want, unlike Mary Kaye who restricts you from working for multiple companies. As far as a facial goes for most women, here is a free, holistic, old fashioned facial most people would enjoy: Wash your face with soap and hot water, using a clean paper towel or wash cloth. Cleanse with rubbing alcohol, witch hazel or lemon juice, and then rince and dry again. Finally, use a pea-sized drop of pure olive oil and rub it into your face and neck, it’s not oily, greasy or sticky, it’s natural and not expensive. You can use sunblock wit it if you want to. For the bath, use some Kosher salt mixed with some body wash or shampoo in the palm of your hand and scrub your whole body down vigerously; the salt will not clog your drain since it dissolves, yet it softens the water and scrubs away your dead skin cells along with the soap – your skin will be wonderfully silky when you get done with the bath/shower. Pat dry, and then rub in olive oil all over your body and silky skin. Take care of your self by proper grooming – floss and brush your teeth twice a day; wash your hair regularly and apply a nice coat of foundation and powder to your face and then add a nice blush and lipstick that coordinate. Use a nutral/wheat colored eye shadowon your lids, and an eyeliner and mascera that matches your eye color, and you will look very pretty indeed. Don’t forget deodorant, perfume and a pretty dress. Clip and file your fingernails, and use some generic baby lotion, and you will be gorgeous. Then put on a pretty dress and admire how pretty you are with natural inexpeinsive products that come from the green earth. Facial? Put any number of foods in the blender and apply them to your face – eggs, avacado, lemons, tomato paste, it doesn’t really matter, if it’s a food product it prob. has vitamines in it that are good for your skin. Also always remember that a fresh cold cucumber sliced up and placed all over your face really does reduce wrinkles because the cucumber has a chemical in it that restores the skin and prevents wrinkles. If you take a bowl of cucumbers with you to the tub, you can soak in a hot tub and apply the cucumbers to your face every night to stay youthful. Then monthly you can do a mask of whatever you have in the fridge. If you want to become truely beautiful, stop over-consuming alcohol and cease smoking, and your youth will return in looks and ow you feel. Exercise, and stop eating sugar/carbs to reduce weight, as sugar/carbs increases insulin resistance which is the key factor in obesity. And be nice. A beautiful woman is one who does not complain, gripe and smiles with her voice and her face. Stop desiring to dominate others and just be compliant; People will certainly say, “Now, that’s a beautiful woman…” and all these things cost NOTHING. Spirituality is eqaually free, just pray and read scriptures that uplift you, then apply what you read to helping others, and you will become the beautiful saint you wish to be without joining Mary Kay or spending oodles on a religious organization, both of which want your money but may not care about you!

  • MotherToBe says:
    11 November 2010

    The brutality of this article surprised me–but I read on anyway. Cool honesty has never scared me. Which is why I’ll share a comment in cool honesty.

    There are certainly “pros” and “cons” to being a Mary Kay Beauty Consultant, but I disagree with the claim that it is destroying lives. As a current Mary Kay Beauty Consultant, here is my take:

    Pros: You do own your own business. There is a certain amount of pride that comes with that. I have had alot of fun with my business, and I LOVE the products. The prizes are so much fun to win. The weekly training meetings that I attended regularly did, in fact, provide TREMENDOUS personal growth. My husband has praised Mary Kay many times over for the character I have gained since becoming a consultant. I have many Mary Kay friends (other consultants) that I have grown very close to, and it feels like a family. They feel like sisters. This is a great opportunity to earn money from home, and when those sales come rolling in, the pride and excitement is energizing. The skills that I have learned through this business has paved the way for me to persue my TRUE dreams.

    Cons: I was told upon signing that I needed a full store. My sales director was very convincing. My husband asked that we not go into tremendous debt over this, and I agreed. However, after my “orientation”, I was convinced that I couldn’t make a profit until I had a $3600 store. My sales director suggested that I should never allow my husband to control me (growing up with a controlling father made this statement have great appeal). My husband and I together decided that I did, in fact, need a $3600 “store”, and this was going to be my ticket out of my full-time job that I hated so much.

    I was also told that I could run my business any way that I want. I have a very peppy personality, love meeting new people, and am GREAT at building deep relationships quickly.

    I was told that I could be a director in as little as 6 months. I could be driving a free car in as little as 4 months.

    I was told I could double my salary in only half the hours–case and point, my sales director makes over $8000 in monthly commissions and drives a pink caddy. She works 20 hours a week.

    I was told that I would have more time at home with my family.

    I was encouraged to use my cute personality (which makes people feel very comfortable with me) to really boost my sales–I was “made for this business”.

    Here’s the harsh reality that I learned:
    $3600 in inventory was a mistake. I should have made a much smaller inventory order (I DO believe in having some kind of inventory… The benefit of this has been proven to me in my sales.) I still have over $2,000 of that debt to pay off. We now have a baby on the way, and this $2,000 debt is driving me insane.

    I was taught later that I must NEVER run my business however I want, unless I simply wished for disaster. I HAD to follow my sales director’s plan step-by-step, using her pre-made scripts, or I would never make any sales. My way simply didn’t work.

    It’s a joke to think you can be a director in any time less than 5 years–though some (very few) have truly made it in as little as 6 months. They make that “free car” seem like it’s right at your fingertips. Ha.

    I was later told that the first few months of my business had to be worked with ruthless dedication. Parties upon parties upon parties, and I had to keep that momentum to be successful. With a full time job, this was impossible. Unless I wanted to spend every evening at someone else’s house hosting a party instead of being at home with my wonderful husband–the man I am deeply in love with.

    I was told that I had to reign in on my “relaxed” personality, and that I needed to sharpen up a bit. Turn up the professionalism and turn down the “let’s be friends” thing that I do (which is how I connect with people). So I tried that. And hated it. I felt plastic, preppy, and fake. I felt disconnected from the people in the room at my parties, and their responses proved that. My cool uppety-ness was met with equal coolness.

    To sum up: I love my Mary Kay business. I love the products, and I make part-time pay on the sales that I make weekly/monthly. But I have stopped going to the meetings (dress code is that you must wear a dress/skirt. I have beautiful pants suits, and I love my jeans. Bye-Bye dress-only meets) and I DO run my business the way I want to now. I am SO much more happy, and I absolutely recommend this as a business to make a little extra money. But please–know this–this is not a get-rich-and-get-a-free-car-quick business, like it seems at a first glance. It is a business, and businesses must be worked in order to make money.

  • Lani says:
    3 January 2011

    I have been trying to sell mary kay for the past two years with very little success and lots of inventory sitting around expiring. I am a stay at home mom with 4 children, what at home job would be a good one?

  • AZ says:
    16 January 2011

    Well I totally agree that selling Mary Kay is a buisness and in order to be selling a lot of products you have to buy the brochures, the samples, and so on. That is you owning your own buisness. The part that realllllly sucks about Mary Kay products is that they have the same products over and over. It’s lame! If Mary Kay would think just for a second about all the teens and young twenty’s females. She would be making more money and Mary Kay ladies too. Because mostly every young adult I speak to about Mary Kay they think it’s an old farts makeup and it’s not right? Well If Mary Kay would have some sort of different products like different color of eyeshadows and morrrrre stuff to sell besides makeup, the Mary Kay ladies would make more money and herself too. But anyways… I think selling Mary Kay is for those who are dedicated to become buisness women! But like I keep repeating MARY KAY YOU NEED TO MAKE MORE PRODUCTS AND SELL THEM CHEAPER!!

  • lady says:
    23 January 2011

    Wake up ladies !!
    Read Naomi Wolf’s Beauty Myth and you will better understand how and why tactics have been used to get all women to cough up billions of dollars into the beauty industry. Its all crap, and the higher priced items all go to marketing and advertising people. Don’t get fooled and go broke from this century old scheme.

  • Lee says:
    26 February 2011

    Hello, Tracy…

    I noticed that your last comment was from August 2010…but I just came across your site…so if you are still taking in comments…here goes…

    As a former Mary Kay victim, err…I mean consultant…I can confirm everything you wrote about in the article. This business is riddled with distortions, half-truths and outright LIES!

    And, how is it that they can continue to quote Mry Kay Ash every year in their planner that they print out? She died years ago…how many quotes can they possibly have from one person? Not even ex-presidents have that many quotes floating around! Its just bizarre!

  • Donna Allen says:
    1 March 2011

    I think this whole forum is simply juvenile and trivial. Miss Tracey it really sounds as if you a throwing a long-term temper-tantrum over a personal bad Mary kay experience. I see you quoting things in this article that you have absolutely NO back up figures for or personal data other than your “strong opinion”. and since when did someone’s theory and what they THINK inside there heads become “THE TRUTH”??? When were YOU ever in Mary Kay? How much inventory did YOU ever purchase??? Who did YOU try to recruit and what Mary kay functions have YOU attended to know these things???

    I am appauled at your article and it is OBVIOUS that you have some personal vandetta against the company or someone in it.

    I personally spent 10 years in Mary Kay and was not as successful as I wanted to be because I was too afraid to invest in a substantial amount of inventory.. Trust and beleive a 250.00 order is NOTHING when you intend to do business. What cosmetics counter can you go to in the Mall and “order” cosmetics? No when the average women goes to purchase cosmetics she wants, NEEDS and EXPECTS to take that product HOME at the time she buys it. The cosmetics industry is a CASH-N-CARRY business and the eye buys it all!

    I personally tried those ‘OTHER” options that you say are out there on the market after I left Mary Kay to pursue my own business and ministry and I tell you after being off the product for almost a year back in 2007 I HATED not having my Mary Kay stuff.. NOTHING ELSE on the market made my skin feel and LOOK as good as their skin care.. and believe me I tried some well known names including- Clinique- Mac- Estee Lauder- Origins , Aveeno etc… NOTHING and I do mean NOTHING gave me the results and benefits that the Miracle-Set gave me. In fact after using these products I lost my glow and my skin became sappy and dull looking and OLD looking.. I HATED THEM and would NEVER use anything other than my faithful Mary Kay.. it’s um um Good to my skin .. not to mention my self-esteem!

    And also to your comment about the exagerrated reports of the income.. THAT”S WRONG TOO !!! I PERSONALLY spent time behind closed doors and in the personal homes of SEVERAL– not one but SEVERAL Mary kay multi-millionaires. I spent MANY late nights sitting at the feet of such greats as Pat Fortenberry, Gloria Mayfield Banks- Joanna Barns, Kim Caveretta, and Gina Gass.. just to name a few. These women are multi-millionaires and have the work ethic and bank accounts to prove it. PUBLISHED INCOME FIGURES!!! Which you cannot lie or embelish about. I have seen and rode in the cars, went on the lavish trips with and seen the paychecks houses and well taken care of families of these ladies who are VERY SUCCESSFUL in this business. So I know aht I am talking about… and my life has been NOTHING but BLESSED because of Mary Kay cosmetics.. where’s YOUR Mary kay story???

    I an STILL using successful selling tips to make MAJOR business deals in my own line of work that I learned in Mary Kay YEARS ago.. so the business really is LEGITIMATE!

    Here is the real TRUTH: Mary Kay cosmetics is a SALES COMPANY PERIOD! Just like ANY OTHER sales company that is successful YOU MUST WORK! The products do sell themselves.. but YOU have to work the products .. and NO you CANNOT sell out of an EMPTY WAGON!! I tried to do it for years and failed! I was one that did not listen to what was told to me .. and I failed because I DID NOT LISTEN.. NOT because a full inventory would not have been best..

    And for those who are contemplating inventory know that you DO NEED IT! Nobody from the company is paying me to say this.. It’s JUST THE TRUTH.. YOU MUST SELL and you Must have SOMETHING TO SELL!!! Point blank period.

    I do understand that some the ladies and directors can be pushy.. but what REAL sales person is not?? You can’t sell a product without some kind of strategy right.. So sometimes in order to make your goals you HAVE to push a little.

    I have never seen or experienced a RUDE or overbearing person in Mary Kay and for 10 solid years I did the meetings, trips, events etc… Now what I DID see was AMBITIOUS NO NON-SENSE business woman who would not allow you to WASTE THEIR TIME…..as I said before, it’s a sales job.. and the bottom line is what do your numbers show…

    Don’t get me wrong, it was VERY fun and EXCITING and REWARDING.. but let’s be REAL.. paychecks of the heart DON’T pay the bill or the car note… YOU MUST WORK your business.. it’s NOT going to work itself.

    So I hope that someone who is considering selling the product will listen to an experienced ex-rep ( who is seriously considering getting back into the business).. Mary Kay is a WONDERFUL company to work for.. and should I choose to go back ( which I am about 90% sure that I will shortly) I will DEFINITELY do it the companies way and get inventory. I will also follow the sales structure so that I can get the success that I am looking for.

    Going to my director and National Sales Directors homes and riding in those pink cadillacs and going on those LUXURY trips and staying in the FINEST hotels that money could by was DEFINITELY my cup of tea.. I LOVED the commradery and all the love and encouragement that I received and gave. I still live my life today on principles and strategies that I learned in those Mary kay trainings. I would not trade those times for ANYTHING!!!!! or ANYONE…

    So to Miss Tracey and all the other negative people that want to poke holes in mary kay.. GET A MARY KAY LIFE FIRST!!! and THEN tell me your story!

    I now have my own successful catering wedding and event planning business.. and I do use business skills that I learned in Mary Kay ro run it… I even recommend their products to my future brides for that day-of beauty that they are looking for.. the product also makes a great thank you gift..

    Hmmm.. perhaps Tracey you just need facial.. maybe then you could relax and stop chasing corporate rabbits!

    God Bless! and Hope you use your time MORE WISELY!

  • Donna Allen says:
    1 March 2011

    Tracey, it is unfortunate that you can’t see through your own blind rage and poppycock.. You used the example of how the corporate world “recruits” other employees to do a differnt job than theirs.. ARE YOU KIDDING ME??? I have seen OVER AND OVER AND OVER again companies “recruit” new hires that have eventually TAKEN the position of the very person who GAVE THEM THE JOB!

    I dont know if you are just willfully blinded by your own emotions or just plain dumb.. there are MILLIONS of end-users ALL OVER THE WORLD for the Mary Kay products.. as a matter of fact, LOYAL REPEAT END USERS that would NEVER use ANYTHING ELSE.. GENERATIONS of woman have grown up on Mary kay products and passed it on to their loved ones and friends.. so what’s MLM about that??

    Not only have CUSTOMERS passed on the PRODUCT .. But Independent CONSULTANTS and DIRECTORS have passed on the AWESOME BUSINESS opportunity to their daughters, customers co-workers and friends.. what is up with your facts??

    and WHY do you have it IN for this company? if you were one of those well educated, well informed women who YOU say have been hurt by Mary Kay.. why not just GET SOME THERAPY and GET OVER IT! STOp BASHING this company and GET A LIFE!

  • Aesop says:
    4 March 2011

    …why are so many of the people complaining about this article/writer unable to spell or refrain from shouting in all caps?

    Regardless, people who still defend Mary Kay and insult others for trying to help remind me of a very old saying.

    “A willful man will have his way to his own hurt.”

  • Kristie says:
    4 March 2011

    Thanks to Pink Truth, I was “saved” before I decided to sell Mary Kay. I found Tracy’s website the night BEFORE I was going to sign up. I can’t believe the horror stories I had read. I started asking my friend questions she couldn’t answer.
    After reading some of the stories on Pink Truth, I started seeing my friend’s actions, some of her comments…eek! I was at her house not long ago & saw a post it note on her front door, “$16,000 to be on target”. She even has a sticker on her MK car that says “MK Operation Pink Cadillac” & also on her voice mail, “This is _____,with Mary Kay director of the future Pink Cadillac Sales Team”.
    It just blew my mind. I think pink Caddys do look neat, but it seems that her whole life is revolved about getting a pink car.
    I also worked at our local bank & waited on a few MK ladies…I promise you that NONE of them had much money in their accounts, along with the deposits that Mary Kay made, no check ever was over $400 (and I’m being generous with that number) And the ladies I waited on “worked their business” & still no “executive income”, but 2 of them had MK cars (no Caddys)
    These “ladies” who are bashing Tracy…..wake up & take off your pink sunglasses!!! How much debt are you in? What does your tax return look like? How much do you have to pay in each year? Plus….health insurance or any other benefits!
    I am thankful everyday that I didn’t sign up. THANK YOU TRACY!!!!!!!!

  • Millie says:
    5 March 2011

    AZ, MotherToBe and others:

    From what I have gathered, an IBC doesn’t actually own her own business, does she? I mean, you are told what to wear, your commission checks for recruitment come from somewhere else, and you can be terminated. That’s nothing at all like being your own boss whatsoever. I think it’s very sad that a lot of intelligent and capable women seem to be taken in by the idea of being their own boss when they are still employees subject to a pre-existing corporation with pre-existing rules. You also are limited in how you can sell and advertise and they designate the “company vehicle” for you too. This is not independence and mastering your own destiny…none of your creativity and power comes into play here. You are following someone else’s preset guidelines. I would feel happier to see nice people like you actually trying to have your own unique business than…chasing that other woman’s dream.

  • ???? says:
    5 March 2011

    There is nothing wrong with starting a Mary Kay business. Like anything else or any other company, you must work hard to succeed. You must be willing to put in the time and effort. And yes you must recruit and build a team, but what is wrong with that? Of course there are pros and cons, but name me just one company that doesn’t have pros and cons. Bottom line try it and of it’s not for you, you can return everything and get your money back. It is not this big horrible scam. It’s a company that sells cosmetics and recruits people to sell it. Nobody holds a gun to your head and nobody forces you to stay with the company. Although I am not in Mary Kay, I know many women who are very happy and successful with their careers. So whoever you are miss Tracy, calm down and find a real issue to write about.

  • FogHat says:
    5 March 2011

    Like Kristie, I was almost hooked recently by a Mary Kay sales director. This SD (from whom I have bought MK products for years), invited me to a “once in a lifetime opportunity” to hear Pam Shaw, an amazing motivational speaker. I thought that it could be uplifting and my hubby was busy that night, so I went with her. What could it hurt, right? Welllll, after the “lineup” of SD stories and the “red coats,” new consultants, and everyone else being recognized, the end of the program came, and Ms. Shaw asked those of us considering becoming a consultant to make a commitment right now. I looked at the SD I came with (friend? I think not), and her face was scarlet red. I asked, “What is going on?” and she stated, “Oh, they do this every time.” Odd, I thought. Why had she not told me that this was a high-pressure recruiting tool she was taking me to? Why did she not tell me that I would be asked for a commitment?? I stupidly stood with the rest of the guests (read: victims) in the room. However, I did not fill out the consultant agreement. I told her I was going to do more research before signing up. Her reply was, “Oh, don’t over-analyze this – you just have to trust me!” HA! She had just proven to me that she was not trustworthy. Who would put a friend into a situation like that unawares? If the company was legitimate, then the opportunity should hold up to analyzing, in my book.
    I went home and felt deceived by her. The more I thought about it, the more it dawned on me that this opportunity is not about selling the product (silly me!), it’s all about recruiting, at the expense of other people’s trust and your own soul. I got on my computer and googled, “Can you make money selling Mary Kay,” and this site came up. I began reading and relating my experience to those of others.
    Before I called her the next day to tell her I was not joining, I realized that her reaction to the news would be very telling. If MK is what it says it is, then her response would be that the opportunity would still be here, if I ever decided to change my mind or want more information. When I did call her the next day, I told her that I knew she would be disappointed, but I was disappointing her and have changed my mind. She immediately said, “HOW do you go from making a commitment last night to ‘I’ve changed my mind’?!” I smiled while she continued to rant into the phone. The fog lifted. I had never seen this side of her. I suddenly realized that THIS is the person I would’ve gotten to deal with as a consultant in her unit. I did not waver. She continued to ask why why why and tried to find a ledge to hang on to so that she could obliterate it with some script from her training. I gave her nothing.
    Today, she sent me an email, something from MK about customer loyalty to the product, and something about her getting together some more information for me, and that she would love to keep me as her customer, but I would be soooo good in Mary Kay, using my amazing gifts and talents…(sheesh)…
    I feel I have dodged the Pink Nuclear Bomb (as I read someone else call it), but now I need any suggestions in going from almost sipping the Kool-Aid back to being just a customer??
    Thank you for the splash of cold water in my face on this web site. I am truly grateful!

  • Kristie says:
    6 March 2011

    FogHat…..Preach on sister!!! I was invited to the same type of event from my “friend”. She told me that she considered be to be a good friend. hahahaha……She wasn’t as friendly when I sat down when we were all asked if we wanted to sell MK to keep standing. It sounded to good to be true, so I thought I would sleep on it.
    MK folks can put on the glitz & glammor….we were at one of the fanciest country clubs in town, gold utensils, crystal goblets, etc. A speaker from Louisville who just got her new pink Caddy. I almost fell for it…..
    Afterwards I discovered MK on ebay!!! I only buy a few things every so often & saving on the expense. So far I haven’t ever heard from my friend except when I ran into her at a store. That was 2 years ago…..but she was supposed to be my “friend”?
    I am all for people going full force to fullfill their career dreams….but screwing over people & having bad business ethics is not the way to do it. MK doesn’t even know what business ethics are!!! FogHat, I’m glad you avoided getting sucked in!!!! We got lucky!!!!! Best to you!!!

  • Scrib says:
    9 March 2011

    “I was told by the new consultant, as I had been told by her supervisor, that “sometimes you just have to override your husband”…I was also told that “sometimes it’s better to ask for forgiveness than to ask for permission…”

    Wow, if that doesn’t just GLISTEN with godly principles and Mary Kay’s supposed “God First” mentality, I don’t know what does! And the sad part is that this blatant disrespect of men and husbands started with the beloved High Holy Queen Mother of Manipulation, Mary Kay Ash.

    “Frankly,” Mary Kay said, “Recruiting men is a waste of time. This company is for women, and I’m proud of it. I’m convinced that when God made men he was just practicing.”

    ~”The Hot Pink Empire of Mary Kay Ash,” Texas Monthly Magazine, 1979

    If Mary Kay Ash truly put God first, she’d be respecting man as a precious and beautiful creation of God Almighty, not some bumbling college try. Is it any wonder she burned through 5 husbands, not counting the two who died?

  • Scrib says:
    9 March 2011

    Hey Donna, I’ve heard Mary Kay described as the best (and most expensive) self-improvement course in the world. I’m floored by how negative your posts are, given that you spent 10 years in MK’s charm school.

    If I were you, I’d be asking for a refund.

  • Kristie says:
    12 March 2011

    Scrib….you are awesome! Thanks for making my day with your posts. Miss Prophetess sounds too negative to be a Mary Kay lady!!!! Get a refund….hahahaha Scrib, you’re too funny!

  • Carmen says:
    22 March 2011

    All of you make good points. Mary Kay reps can be too pushy, and $3600.00 for makeup is unbelievable. Every persons financial situation is different and I would bet money that 99% of women that take a chance with this company are doing so to make money & they don’t have $4000.00 in a bank collecting dust! I also feel that telling another woman to disregard her husbands feelings is disrespectful. I personally would not like to start a business without my other half supporting me. I paid the $100 for the starter kit and was very excited
    until I was told I had to pay more money to purchase inventory. My husband & I decided that we would not go into debt. So I started very small. I sold to family and friends that liked the product and were willing to pay up front and then wait for their order to arrive. I have a full time job so I didn’t dedicate very much time to my business but I made a decent bit of change. Not enough to quit my job though! Personally I like the product and I enjoy sharing it with anyone who is willing to try it.
    No mater what business you chose to take a chance with, my advice is this: Ask questions. Don’t be intimidated by pushy women. Know what chances your household can and can not afford to take. Don’t put your family in debt. Have self respect and respect your customers. Be honest and offer things that will meet your customers needs. Have a blessed day! 

  • Josefina says:
    6 May 2011

    So MotherToBe what do you advise me? I agree with you i have been in business before i just jumped into marykay as a new consultant and i am thinking in a very smart way. I don’t want to have again to go through a lots of inventory and waste my money. I just want some extra money and have fun meeting people and learning more about direct sales. I also have three kids that i would like to raise and take care. What about the personal website that they said that we need to purchase?
    Any advice for me?

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    6 May 2011

    Advice for Josefina – If you need to make money, get a part time job. 99% of women lose money in MK. You might get lucky and make minimum wage. But probably not.

  • Josefina says:
    6 May 2011

    Carment thank you so much you answer one of my questions about how do i take orders if i have a little inventory? well just the started kit. your answer is putting in orders and people wait until they arrive?

  • Josefina says:
    6 May 2011

    Tracy thanks! for the advice. Well I’ve tried before to get a part time job because of my situation i have three children. i live in las Vegas and with this economic situation businesses are not hiring part timers at all here. Even business are using their own employees to cover other areas in the same company just to avoid hiring and spending money that its getting old now here in Vegas. I think taking it easy and selling here and there i can make some extra money. Nobody convince me to jump in with Mary Kay i was thinking about it even with Avon but i don’t like Avon at all. Just when my friend invite me to one of her friend marykay parties. Marykay seems to be “for me” more fancy and has good products because i had try them before. Anyway thanks!!

  • OntheFence says:
    9 May 2011

    Hi MotherToBe, I really appreciated the candor of your comments. I just recently bought my MK Starter Kit (they were having a $50 promo deal in April, otherwise, I wouldn’t have paid the $100 to get started) and I have felt the poke & prod of my own Sales Director too. Accompanying my initial enrollment were feelings of excitement about starting my own business & working for myself; however, I am currently torn by the fact that MK doesn’t disclose where their products are manufactured and the entire paradigm of “get rich quick-spare-no-expense-consume-consume-consume” attitude. My own Director is assertively encouraging me to have MK take the place of my part-time job; in fact, yesterday she asked me over the phone “What will it take for you to quit your part-time job?” I explained that my purpose in life has never been about making money. (For some background, I currently work in Social Work for two different agencies, one full-time, the other part-time, but I find both spiritually rewarding). My life calling seems to be rooted in helping people. That said, I guess I decided to get the starter kit because $50 seemed affordable, I liked the facial products, and I thought it would be nice to eventually gain the flexibility to work from home. However, I agree with your testimony about how you have to have parties upon parties (which is what I feel pushed by my Director to do) & only use their sales pitch to turn a profit. I would say MK is a good route to go if you are economically & financially driven, have no consciousness about the ecological or sociological (i.e. sweat shops) impacts of how MK’s products are made, and have some seed money (at least $1200) to get your business off the ground. You also have to be willing to invest your time into cultivating your business just as you would any other business endeavor. MotherToBe is right: MK is not a “get rich quick business”. You have to work it.

  • Gina says:
    23 May 2011

    Right on Blessed, couldnt have said it better myself!!!! You hit the nail on the head when you say “It’s about getting the word out, informing women and their families about this cult-like entity.”

  • Tasha says:
    6 June 2011

    So I don’t really see why SO MANY people are freaking out about this post…. Tracy C. is just saying what see thinks and what she has found. Sure, the title might be a little over the top… but isn’t that what caught your attention? That is the point! You have to have a catchy title for people to read. Having something like “Mary Kay… a scam.” Isn’t interesting and NO ONE WOULD READ IT!! So I believe that people need to grow up and stop bashing on Tracy C.’s thought and opinions!

    On the subject of MaryKay, I was looking into starting it up but I found some many sites that warned against it that I have recently decided to stay away. Tracy C. just put the cherry on top of the issue with this article and I can say how happy I am that I read this article!

  • jay says:
    9 June 2011

    You guys are all mistaken. Don’t listen to some bitter, repetitive person who doesn’t care to appreciate the people that try. Not everyone is a sales person, that might be why people “quit”. You obviously had a bad experience with a consultant but it doesn’t mean that EVERYONE in the business is exactly the same. You shouldn’t create hate over a company because they’re successful. Why don’t you write about those scam companies to warn people. Like those that sell life insurance, or pyramid companies that are obviously not good. Products at the mall are HORRIBLE for your face, not to mention that some even contain POOP and they charge 60$ for a mascara. Why don’t you go talking to them or being mean to them, instead? Or if you have a problem with the fact that people spend thousands to spend, then why don’t you just say, “hey don’t spend ‘x’ amount to start! It’s really not needed!” I have been doing it for 1 month and i’ve gained over 1200$ and I DON’T have any debt, or do i have a “wagon” filled with products…

    you shouldn’t speak for every women in the world. You’re only one person. I don’t need a voice, i have one. Have a great day. And maybe you should smile and stop bringing so much hatred to yourself

  • LaTonia says:
    14 June 2011

    You are so right about Mary Kay, my friend has been a consultant for nearly 20yrs and he gets people to sign up only to make his numbers look good at the end of the month or whatever. This is a pyramid scheme, and over over priced.

  • Newbie says:
    29 June 2011

    I have recently had a facial from Mary Kay … and although I was not initially hit with the “come and join the MK family” I was invited to be a model at a Seminar – whereby I watched 3 other like-minded models get put on the spot in the venue of A CHURCH and who felt the pressure to sign up …. apparently we were all a 10!! I, needless to say thought I would do my homework! Well I would just like to say a BIG THANK YOU to those ladies (especially “think pink”) out there that whether negative or not have given me a BETTER understanding and that is all I can possibly ask for. It is my choice and life style to do what I want with but I like to have all the facts to make that decision for myself not allowing others to cohurst me into MK sooo quickly. Thank you ladies! I made the choice not to join, but purely based on the fact that this is not a money making scheme – I would be better to set up my own business walking dogs – no pressure and lots of fresh air …. excellent for the complextion!! ;-) However, if you are a mother and don’t get the opportunities to get out and natter – then join MK purely on the basis of a social gathering and not to make money – that’s my 50/50 advice!

  • ch says:
    22 July 2011

    I too was a consultant, I feel like I was fed lies and told to lie, to my husband included. Also I would like to see how many women that use Mary Kay have breast cancer?

  • EW says:
    24 August 2011

    I just found it weird that at the end of all this Mary Kay Bashing there was a Bare Essentials ad.

  • Marie says:
    31 August 2011

    Hi I wanted to let you know that they have over 500 products and lots under 10 dollars.Not to mention all the limited edition products that come out every spring, summer and fall. I am greatful that MK has cleared up my skin and saved me a fortune at the doctors office.

  • Linda Perez says:
    31 August 2011

    Dear Roxy, I been in Mary Kay for almost 19 Years! and sounds, that, what happend to you, is that could be a missunderstanding, or you, we have some bas apples in Mary Kay too!, I”ll be willing to help you find out , who this Directo, or Group is, just to clear things to be just fair! you know Roxy, my experence with Mary Kay is That, the money I make is how much I work, I have 3 children, they all were born while I was in Mary Kay! and I stared the business fot that reason. to stay home with my kids, they are 17, 15,10, people say , I should be doing better, but, I feel happy , and blessed, that this opportunity exists, before Mary Kay , I work 3 jobs, full time in a Bank, partime in a Restaurant,and 2-3 days couple hours in a Law Firm, Mary Kay give me, The Flexebility, and money thtaa I needed at the time! then I fall in love with the opportunity, I have opportunity to help women feel better with their apparence, how to llok good, and to train them to be an independent business women like me!. I did Stared with no money, and within 4-6 weeks my inventory went to $4,800 Retail Price, now, I need to tel you I work hard, very hard, and I have no experience whatsoever in direct sales! but I listened to my then Director, and, I attend trainigs & Meetings, even thoug I was very sick with my pregnancy, yes! when I stared, I was 6 months pregnant!, I remember it was har winter, lots snow, below zero, it was Cold!!, even againts my husband’s wishes, but, I had to listen to my heart, and I followed my heart! and I am glad!, now my husband feels bad for making harder on me, but now aour kids are older, and you know what, my 2 daugters say to me, “Mom we never think , that you were working, because you always with us!, but always very Pretty”,and for your kids to say that about you! Wow! you have to give Credit to Mary Kay! please!now Your gains are, you make 50%, also commisions for Recruiting, how star is up to you! how you treat your business is all up to you! after all you are an independent woman! Now! the trainig & Support is there, and how much you want of that is also up to you!, See! Roxy it all depends of you! your needs, your Goals! your desires! and The Time , that you are going to put in! . the is no such thing, Scams in Mary Kay! is all in the open & clear! it is only up to you!, people fail, because! the put in they’re mouths more than , they can chew! or they get over exited! and yes! we have some bad apples , tha take advantage of that! but unfortunally, until we found them! Please feel free to ask questions! to look around, believe me, there just not to many women runing around not knowing, believe me, this is more than make somebody get in debt, and or go bankrupt, no, please! I am a perfect example, that it is up to you! Mary Kay just put the colors, and the tools, and you paint your Masterpiece! I am proud of what I do!… I do!, and I am happy to passed along to other women , that they are looking for an opportunity also! , nothing wrong with that! after all, we humans allways reffering things, places, to others, and we don’t make any profit! so! tha’s how I see it! if it is good for me,is possible , that it will be good to others!, I just wich, that people see how much damage they can cause, by talking with out real fact! I always say Speak The Truth! not what in your mind can be the Truth! this company is been for 50 years, so! my question is 50 year in The Market! and with people from all backrounds, Wow! don’t you think is a little strange, that over a Million Women and they’re husnabds brainwash! come on, please! wea retalking here, in USA, were peoplo take you to Court, just because!. well, I hope that gives some justice!and hope that many of you! reflect on this! and to Tracy C. I can say! that your job must be very difficult! I really feel for you! and I will pray for you!, this is from my heart!. Thank you! for the opportunity to comment!, and Roxy God Bless you! maybe we can talk some day!

  • Linda perez says:
    31 August 2011

    Yes! Carmen, I agree with you all the way, and yes< I stared the same way, , in fact, my husband din't even think , it will ork for me! so! I ask him to let me try it and see it for my own eyes! and yes! he told me, but don't expect any money from me, so! my mother helpm me, and I star by doing Facials, and people will pay me 1/2, then I order my product! now is been 18+ years, and now I am a Dir. in Mary Kay, and I can tell you! what we did was great! but, when I decided to became a Dir., then I need it to be better to my customers, and to have the products ready for them, after all , they deserve it! like going in to any other store, you don't want to pay before, you get your product? right?, and because, my profit increase, because of sales, and then my sales increase because of my Inventory! so! at the end, you sell what you have, and you have what you want to sell! very simply, so! yes! in the beging I invest my own profit, but then I stared paying myself, the 1st year I save over 12K only in sales, and for somebody with out experinece, with no money and a very skiptical husband, that does not trust anyone Wow!I think is putty darn good!. ao! as you go! you'll see, how and where you want to conduct your business, and how much money you want to make! easy! is your own decision!

  • Linda Perez says:
    31 August 2011

    Good for you Josefina, good for you! now, I just like to say to you, you can stay like this making money this way getting orders first, and then placeing orders later! is great, but, if for somereason, you decide to became a leader, then you need to change protocols, your customers will always deserve to be treat it right! , imagine, you going to buy groceries, and all your needs for your family, and the stores telling you! Ho! Ms. pay us first, and then come back in 2 weeks to get you items, but maybe your apying for your orders, and you just want to make sure that they ordered for you firts! well, that’s great also!, anyhow make work for you! but with out thashing the Mary Kay co.! I love this opportinity, and I am proud to be in it! and I always try to do my best , only my best of doing it rigth , and what’s justice! so! good luck, and keep it the good work Josefina! God Bless you , and to all the same!

  • Scrib says:
    31 August 2011

    “Not to mention all the limited edition products that come out every spring, summer and fall…”

    Ah yes, all the new stuff IBCs are pressured to purchase (and thus, charge up more product that they don’t need and aren’t required to carry) whenever Mary Kay Corporate throws a dart or seven at their “How Can We Screw Consultants Next?” board. Slots include:

    “Change product formula”
    “Change product packaging”
    “Discontinue product”

    and the always-fun “Push Limited Edition Stuff that My Director will Sell on eBay a Month Before its Official Release!” :D

  • Scrib says:
    31 August 2011

    “However, if you are a mother and don’t get the opportunities to get out and natter – then join MK purely on the basis of a social gathering and not to make money – that’s my 50/50 advice!”

    No way. You cannot play with fire and not get burned. I’m a stay-at-home mum, and I would rather chat with the local stray cat than join Mary Kay for its brand of “fellowship.”

    Sure, the cat has an ulterior motive for hanging out with me (hey, I buy the good cat food, what can I say?) but at least I know the cat’s not going to encourage me to lie to customers or hide my true financial numbers from my husband.

    That makes him better company by default.

  • Raven says:
    4 September 2011

    Personally Tracey, I want to know what direct experience you have with Mary Kay? It’s obvious that this is important to you because other wise you wouldn’t have “wasted your time” with this website or the Pink Truth. I know it’s not just the money you make on advertising because you probably would have picked a more searched site. Although I do not sale Mary Kay I have been to a few of their meetings, and I think your missing a lot of the key reasons women sale Mary Kay. It’s a social thing. A lot of them have become close friends and they use their meetings as a excuse to throw a social meeting and congratulate each other for doing what they believe is right. I see no problem with this, because I have never been “hassled” by a Mary Kay lady. You have a grudge against them for a reason which you leave unbeknownst to all who have read your blog. I just wish that more people would spend more time figuring out ways to help our planet and less time sending out negative energy to other people who are just doing what makes them happy. If you don’t like Mary Kay then don’t sell it and don’t buy it. If Mary Kay is one big scam at least the people being scammed are happy. That’s all that matters. There are way more important things to do in this world than crunch the numbers from a organization that has nothing to do with you, and probably doesn’t want to.

    I’m not meaning to sound harsh but while you write your blog some one, somewhere just died of starvation. I think that there are bigger things you can do with your web skills, you obviously have a talent for reaching people and spreading your opinion.

    Raven

  • Sheena says:
    4 September 2011

    Hi! I am a licensed hair stylist and makeup artist and I was looking to start selling makeup on my website. Now I contacted Jane Iredale cosmetics, eve pearl cosmetics, Smashbox and others. I laugh because everyone compains about being asked to buy Mary Kay inventory when getting into the business… What you don’t realize is when I contacted every one of those other brands… You have to buy inventory to sell on your online store. Not only that.. But when you buy more inventory, you have minimum order requirements. So why is everyone mad at Mary Kay for asking you to buy inventory? The only advantage this company has over selling normal product lines is commision you get from building a team and you get commission not only from your sales, but their sales as well. If I had a normal retail store, I still have to buy inventory, I need to sell it to make the money back. If I want to grow my company, I have to hire employees and pay them out of my profits. If you build a team in Mary Kay, you don’t pay each person that joins you. They buy inventory from corporate, and you get a commission NOT from those individuals but FROM corporate. Those individuals dont pay you to be in the business. And everyone, no matter when they start have to continue to buy inventory. But that is te case with any retail store you do. I would say, never join a program you don’t fully understand. Look at everything especially the pay scale and ask a bunch of questions. Just something to think about. Sorry if this is all messy. I’m typing from a phone.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    4 September 2011

    Sheena – What you are describing is an actual retail business. A real store, a real retailer. Mary Kay is not a real retail business, and that is the problem with stocking inventory.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    4 September 2011

    Raven – Your statement that it is okay to scam women with Mary Kay because they are happy is ludicrous. First of all, the women in Mary Kay are not happy. Their rah-rah parties are not evidence that they are happy, only that they feel obligated to show up for an event that is not fun and pretend that they are enjoying it. Second, I’ve never in my life heard someone suggest that it is okay to scam people as long as the people they scam are happy. That’s just ridiculous. Scams are wrong, period.

    I don’t “have a grudge” against Mary Kay. I am simply horrified at the hundreds of thousands of women who are sucked into this pyramid scheme and lose money because of it. My goal is to educate women so they can avoid the company.

    And you should know that a child starved while you were writing your comment. I suggest you do something more worthwhile with your time than comment on blogs. There are lots of important things happening in the world, and who are you to judge what issues I devote time to?

  • Sheena says:
    4 September 2011

    From what i have researched…. Mary Kay makes you do the same requirements as traditional retail sales. The difference between the two is to grow your business you have to recruit (recruited dont pay upline to join) and you make a small commission on their sales as well. Normal retail stores you have to hire employees and pay out of your own profits.

    The fee to start your business is $100 and includes a real nice size kit with $300 worth of products and learning material. I believe it is an mlm company or network marketing company( they call it dual marketing). I don’t believe it is a pyramid scam.

    Definition of a pyramid scam: involves promising participants payment primarily for enrolling other people into the scheme rather than any real investment or sale of products or services to the public.

    Basically these companies provide no products or services. It starts with the first investor, who is at the top. This person recruits a second person who is required to invest $100 (for no products or services) and pays directly to the recruiter. That new person is required to recruit new people who pay him/her $100 to get involved so they can get back their $100 and make some money as well. If they recruit 5 people, they make $500, then minus his own $100 investment. You basically pay to be apart of the program so you can recruit and make money.

    I do no work for Mary Kay but I have researched a lot on it. This company and any retail industry is not for non self motivated people and sales types. So don’t even think about it if your not going to work. But I do feel it is unfair to call it a pyramid scam.

    Mlm companies, direct selling, network marketing companies and dual marketing companies need to comply and be a member of the DSA http://www.DSA.org

    These companies simply choose to advertise and sell products and or services through individuals and reps.

    My hair color line uses sales reps to come to my salon and get us to use and buy products… My life insurance was bought from a Freelance sales rep that sells different brands of life insurance plans.

    The problem with these companies is that people don’t ask enough questions before they dive into Mary Kay. It’s hard work! And it took the people making 200k a year, like 20 years to achieve that! Or they expect the product to sell itself. Well if you believe that, I suggest you put your Mary Kay product out for a garage sale that you have not promoted and no one knows about…. See if that product hops off the table, walk itself to a persons car and jumps in while leaving money behind for you. Products don’t sell thenselfs. You have to advertise and expose people to the products to sell it.

  • Sheena says:
    4 September 2011

    Also to say that Mary Kay Is not a real business is silly. Do they sell beauty products? Yes. If I go to the Mary Kay website, can I place an order and purchase beauty products? Yes. Is the company a corporation that has a headquarters or corporate office? Yes. Has the beauty products been approved by the FDA? Yes. So why is this not a real company? They basically hire freelancers to sell products. Sorry, I just really want people to look at the good and bad and fully research every and any company no matter what it is that they wish to get involved in.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    4 September 2011

    Mary Kay Inc. is indeed a real business, which is making a killing off consultants who are losing money. The consultants? I can’t consider that a real business because it’s not. They are involved in a pyramid scheme.

    I want people to research too. That’s why I’m providing information here and at Pink Truth that the company will never tell potential recruits.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    4 September 2011

    Mary Kay consultants are not retailers. The company wants them to think they are, but they are not. Sure, they make retail sales, but they are not a retail establishment and that is why having inventory makes no sense. An individual cannot sell enough personally to justify having thousands of dollars of products on their shelves. (Especially when MK is known for frequent product changes.)

    Many pyramid schemes use products to make them look legitimate. That’s exactly what MK does. The real focus is recruiting in an endless chain, and the product is the front for that to make it look like a real business. The process of recruiting you explain is exactly what MK is: recruit people, convince them to buy an inventory package, and the recruiter gets paid. The recruiter hopes to recruit enough people who purchase inventory in order to make some money.

    MK recruiters are known for saying that the product sells itself. Which is it? Does it or does it not.

    The DSA is a lobbying organization. It really has no interest in any sort of quality control for its members. It exists simply to make sure that governments never crack down on MLMs.

  • Irene says:
    5 September 2011

    This is so true I was scamed into it at the young age of 19. I was talked into getting a credit card and buying the starter kit. My recruiter also told me I needed to build a stock to be successful. So I started to try selling it but fail completly. Who wanted to hear a 19 year old tell them what was best. My credit card soon went to collections cause I had no job to fall back on. I quit school and have been waitressing ever since. Trying to pay my bills and trying to fix my debt.

  • Carol says:
    6 September 2011

    Bible reading Christian on one hand and Tarot card reader on the other? Doesn’t mix! I won’t preach here, just wondering how you can justify making money on something like reading Tarot cards.

  • Joesephine says:
    12 September 2011

    The math really does explain it all. In 2010 approximately $2.6B in revenues with 1.8M beauty consultants world wide. That’s exactly $1,444.44 in sales annually per consultant. Right around the amount of “inventory” initial consultants are told to purchase. Given that approximately half churn each year it becomes very obvious as to who the few are that are making money – it’s not the directors or consultants – it’s the executives and the rest of the 4,600 or so actual employees who are actually employed by the company (with benefits like insurance and vacation and a regular salary). Say whatever you like but the math simply does NOT support any kind of success at MK. BTW I have never worked for MK or been a consultant – just been hit up by those who wanted me to join.

  • M says:
    20 September 2011

    I am a current consultant, and I am in the process of quiting and sending back my inventory! I actually was pretty happy as a consultant, but found it rather strange, that we are unable to advertise our MK site online!!! I ran an ad on google, which ended up getting linked to eBay, I received an email from an anonymous director, whom said she was turning me in for illegal advertising!! Hmmm, why was this director shopping on eBay for MK products anyway?? Really, I don’t have the time or money to put up with the craziness of this business, it is a complete scam!!

  • Kel says:
    29 September 2011

    Many years ago I was a MK rep and the above article is completely accurate. In 1995 women did not have the ability to research such fraud. I am currently looking into AVON and would love any feed back you have to offer. Stay Strong and Aware Ladies, Be well, Kel

  • AS says:
    29 October 2011

    Thank you for the posts & for opening my eyes, was ready to become consultant after losing my job two years ago & not being able to find any work.

  • AS says:
    29 October 2011

    Linda, you can’t compare buying groceries to buying make-up. Make-up isn’t a nutritional factor in your families life, well at least not in mine. Besides if you need make-up Right Now!, like you need food, then there are more issues there to think about.

  • Barbi says:
    1 November 2011

    its even harder to sell

  • Sue says:
    3 November 2011

    yes, they did this to me too. I wish someone would file a class action lawsuit against them because I am still stuck with over $1000 worth of old inventory. Obviously people are so desperate that they are selling it on ebay and amazon for less than 25% of the retail value despite the fact that amazon and ebay take 30% of the sale price!! literally women are selling the things for pocket change.

  • Christina says:
    5 November 2011

    My best friend is now a consultant and started off paying not just $100 for the start up kit, but purchasing $1200 on a Mary Kay credit card. She joined Mary Kay to help eliminated the debt she already had from loosing her job and being a mom of two small girls, but the way the economy is right now this turned out to be a bust! No one is buying especially at their rediculous prices! I fear she may have dug herself into a deeper financial hole!

  • Judy says:
    11 November 2011

    Mary Kay put my daughter and her husband so far in debt it was ridiculous! Always the promise of the brass ring, which only seemed to be caught by the directors/recruiters. She unexpectently passed away recently and there is still a box of unsold Mary Kay products we have to disposs of. Thousands of $$$ worth “you need this to keep your business going” stuff that will now go to the dump!

  • Anon says:
    13 November 2011

    Sue, you can return your inventory and they will give you 90% of your money back.

  • Erika says:
    24 November 2011

    I wasn’t aware that buying parts for your car to make sure it runs was a waste of money. And in the MK world, you drive to your shows, classes, fairs, training, etc. So if your car isn’t running, I don’t think it’s going to work out quite that well.

  • Erika says:
    24 November 2011

    At least they’re happy being scammed? That’s like saying “Who cares if they’re being beaten, as long as they’re happy when it happens.”

    And for far less money, women can find other social groups, such as a book club. At $15/month for the book, it’s a far better outlet.

  • April says:
    27 November 2011

    I am a Mary Kay dealer have been for 3 months. I have not sold anything. Why? Because I have absolutely done nothing. I am concerned with societies excesses always blaming others for their unhappiness. If it was not Mary Kay then it would be something else they would have buyers remorse from. We need to be responsible for our decisions and actions we make and not blame others.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    27 November 2011

    April – By and large the women I have met through pinktruth.com DO take responsibility for their choices. What they cannot and should not take responsibility for are the lies they were told. There is rampant dishonesty in Mary Kay, particularly in the recruiting process and in conning women to stock inventory. They believed the lies they were told, as this unethical company promotes a squeaky clean image and pretends that the recruiters are “helping” women who come into the company. Nothing could be further from the truth. They are predators whose number one goal is to con women into the company and then con them into purchasing large amounts of inventory they will never be able to sell.

  • CJ says:
    1 December 2011

    I received my starter kit from MK about 2 weeks ago and I have already quit. I felt extremely pressured to buy big bulks of inventory. I mean numerous calls, voicemails, texts and emails a day! I continously told the lady that my husband wanted me to prove i would have somewhat of a customer base before he would hand out that kind of money and she actually wanted his phone number so she could talk to him about it. She said he didnt understand how important it was that i have inventory before i can sell. Then after that didnt work she proceeded to talk me into asking friends or family for loans so i could get my inventory! I tried telling the lady I have 5 children and it is a month before Christmas I CANNOT afford to buy 600-2400 worth of make-up! I finally just had to start ignoring the texts, calls, emails, and voicemails. I was very excited about getting into the MaryKay business until I began too feel uncomfortable from all the pushiness. And to be honest it got to the point that my husband and I were getting pissed!

  • CB says:
    8 December 2011

    I was reading all the post and this is quite interesting to hear the frustrations from women who have not succeeded in Mary Kay. I am not a Sales Director but I am consultant with a few team members. I have been selling MK for almost 3 years now. I decided to learn first how to sell the products because the products do sell and women love MK products, not all but most of them. Whenever you(in general) decide to get serious about owning your own business you have to know your business. MK provides all the necessary educational tools for all of us to become successful in this business. You have to take advantage of using the tools. The Mary Kay Biography is very important. Without reading it one will never understand the business. Mary Kay talks about how important it was to her to make women feel special and appreciated. If you want more you have to do more. Everyone does not get this concept. She also talks about God first, Family second, and Career third. What an order! Success happens when you put your life in order. Success does not happen over night and if it did we would all be happy! One has to work hard and owning a home based business is very hard. It takes commitment and dedication to succeed. The companies we choose to go and work for has a person most higher than anyone and do you think that person sleeps more than we do? Look around at your surroundings and imagine how the businesses are still in business and then look at the ones that are not in business any longer. One should question why is that? What happened? I do think some of the directors in Mary Kay are a little persuasive but it’s only because they have set a goal for themselves and they make plans to reach their goals. She also has a goal set for that person she recruits. Without expectations what do you think would happen? No expectations, no results. For the person that started this website and the Pinktruth, I was almost convinced they were right. But I feel they were only right because they got tired of sales and rejection from all the no’s that you do get in this business. I learned over the years that when a consultant gets 1-5 no’s they quit. They first thing they say is, “Nobody wants to buy these products and people are saying they are too high”! But they don’t talk about how much money they just spent the day before. I have been trying to become a Director since I joined Mary Kay. I have been in and out of DIQ. Yes I was complaining to and ready to quit. But I kept asking myself why quit now? Other companies and home based businesses go through the same thing. Disappointments every single day and quarter. Did you hear the US Post office is getting ready to layoff over 100,000 workers? I think it’s good when you can air your frustrations, but I do know with Mary Kay Cosmetics you can call the 1-800 # and talk to a live person, you can pass out business cards and also get names and phone # from potential prospects. You can have a mentor other than your Sales Director or the person that recruited you. You have choices and that’s what I love about Mary Kay. I earn my money from selling my products and doing gift baskets. For the person that wants to return products, get creative and make some beautiful gift baskets. Go to some of the women’s shelters and donate a few. The military people are looking for some body & face products that they don’t have access to right now. Help someone and I know you will be helped. I hope this blesses you and prayerfully you can pass your blessing on to someone else. Great day! Cheryl

  • Melissa says:
    9 December 2011

    why didn’t you send it back to mary kay and get 90% of your money back?

  • Jasmine says:
    9 December 2011

    I have seen a few ladies say this, but i will say it as well for people who didnt see it. People stuck with mary kay products that are not selling and send the products back and get 90% of your money back…

  • Betty says:
    11 January 2012

    To the lady who was looking into Avon, save your time. Avon is worse than MK. If you don’t sell a certain $$ amount each campaign, you get no discount. I have sold both, MK products are by far better than Avon and so is the sales program, but I am out of both for all the obvious reasons – nobody was buying.

  • me says:
    25 February 2012

    Uh well when you try to send your product back to get the 90% of it back, they only take stuff that is in the current catalogue, so they wouldnt take any of my items! it doesnt work as easy as it looks to send it back!

    TERRIBLE company, would never ever sell for them again!!!

  • Michelle says:
    5 March 2012

    I lost a good friend when she started selling/pushing MK products. EVERY single time I heard from her she was so enthusiastic and wanting to give me a facial!! Then I moved 3 states away. The first time I came back she wanted to give me a facial! When we talked on the phone a year later she wanted to know when I was coming back to visit so she could give me a facial!! Then she started in with her “How are you? HOpe you’re well, etc. etc.” spiel. I told her I was right in the middle of a miscarriage and wouldn’t be making the trip that week. I swear that her response was, “That’s great MIchelle! I’d LOVE to give you a facial!!” Huh? I never got any emails, voicemails, or cards/letters that weren’t all about Mary Kay for the next several years. We are no longer in touch. We’d been friends for many, many years. I *cringe* when friends tell me they’re so excited to now be selling Mary Kay!! OH NO!!!!!

  • Jetta says:
    10 March 2012

    I recently went to a mary kay gathering and have been thinking about getting into it myself lately. A friend of mine has breen apart of it for a while and she seems fine. All I heard that I had to buy was the starter kit. I will be meeting with a team leader this week, so I will tell her my concerns about joining, because I don’t know if this is all true or not. I won’t buy anything other than the starter kit, so if all else fails at least I will only be out a hundred bucks….and use the kit for myself :)

  • Anni says:
    14 March 2012

    Hi Jetta, do what you would do before any “job interview” kind of thing.. research. Going to meet wit her with some good questions will allow you to make the most solid business decisions. Google “Pink Truth” for some ideas for questions, and check out some other sites too.. just for ideas :)

  • Maritza says:
    22 March 2012

    I discovered that they use my name and address to fill their quota of recruits the supervisor needed. My supervisor send products to my place and these orders were pick up during the day while I was at work. Until I complain.I believe that they use illegal immigrants as a consultants to laundry money with the excuse of selling Mary Kay products but in reality they are doing illegal business.

  • Jennifer says:
    4 June 2012

    First off “the pink cult” made me laugh. I just want to say I agree the product is not high quality. I went to a party recently it was sad. I’m not a makeup specialist at all. I’m not good at applying make up dispite wearing it for many years, and applying it to my daughter when she was in cheerleading. However I knew more about makeup applation than the consultant. She was friendly but clueless. Also all the makeup washes off with plain water. That’s good for preteens, but I need more staying power. If I sweat my my makeup runs, not attractive. I threw it away. Ladies please don’t try to peddle this product. It’s embarrassing.

  • Jordan says:
    16 August 2012

    Ok girls,
    I’m sick of all the “Christian” crap! It is completely awesome that we live in a country where we are free to worship however we feel, but really we are discussing business, not faith. I am an off and on consultant of four years and I’ve never really pushed recruiting or even sales. I have a job as a therapist so I don’t depend on MK. I think what Tracey has set up is interesting for sure. I’m not the kind of person that is easily manipulated, though those SD’s certainly tried every trick. They are really sweet ladies but they are concerned about the bottom line, themselves. Which is fine because we have to look out for number one, ourselves, because no one else is gonna do it. Frankly I think it is a sick and gross manipulation to throw your faith around and use it as a sales tool/ weapon to grow your business and defend it against facts that prove MK is not all its cracked up to be. You should be ashamed of yourself.

  • K Rae says:
    21 March 2013

    Tracy, have you actually sold Mary Kay? I haven’t bothered to read all of the replies in this thread nor do I know how old these comments are, but I have decided to reply nonetheless. From my understanding, Mary Kay is a business. Any person who is self employed hopes to sell whatever they have for money. That is the point. Why is a Mary Kay beauty consultant wrong for doing the same thing? A clothing store has clothes in it for customers to buy. QT already has food and drinks inside for customers to buy. Why is a Mary Kay consultant wrong for wanting to have products on-hand to sell? If they get the products at the right price they will make money when they sell them. My sister sells Mary Kay and I researched the company when she started. I don’t believe MK is a pyramid scheme. The way my sister sells and then makes money isn’t even close to a pyramid scheme. When I looked at how the company worked it doesn’t seem possible, but for some reason it does work. And Mary Kay isn’t for everyone. If someone isn’t able to meet new people they aren’t going to sell product and therefore won’t make money. Of course they quit. I honestly don’t understand all of the anger toward Mary Kay. If someone doesn’t put the effort into Mary Kay their business won’t grow. It doesn’t mean that they are lazy, it means they aren’t doing what is necessary to grow a business.

  • Tracy Coenen says:
    22 March 2013

    Yes, K Rae, I HAVE sold Mary Kay. But what does it matter to this discussion? My personal experience has no bearing on the fraud being perpetrated by consultants and directors around the world.

    You suggest that people fail because they don’t know how to run a business. I am proof that this is not true. i run a very successful business. I know exactly how to sell and how to succeed.

    In MLM, your efforts are not correlated to your success. MLM is a sham, and 99% of people who participate lose money. That’s not a business.

    The MK “business plan” sounds good, doesn’t it? Buy a product for $1 and sell it for $2. You can make money simply by selling the product! What they forget to tell you is that very little actual retailing goes on. The product is meant to make the “business” look legitimate. It is really only the bait to get you in, the front to make it seem real, and the vehicle through which the corporate entity profits.

    Read more about the lack of retail sales here:
    http://www.sequenceinc.com/fraudfiles/2011/04/why-retailing-does-not-occur-in-multi-level-marketing-companies/

  • Mr. Smith says:
    15 June 2014

    Tracy I have to say you have done a great service telling all the sins of Mary Kay & company. I read an article recently about Amway and other such scams. Unfortunately, my friend Rhonda back in the mid 90’s ‘tried’ to sell MK with little to no success and I would tell her it was a pyramid deal with only the vultures at the top making any ‘real’ money. Poor dear lost about 5 or $600. Good for you Tracy. You’re doing a great public service for these women. ‘Muffins and makeovers ‘ made me laugh out loud! Probably shoulda been Martinis and madness then sales would have been stellar!

  • mary rand says:
    13 July 2014

    My mom is 87 soon to be 88. She met someone at an Emmaus meeting who talked her into selling mary kaye. She now has,a huge stock of the products. What is really sad is the lady pressuring her is a lawyer. I can n o t imagine why a lawyer w o old get involved in something like this. No clue what to do.

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