The Truth Behind What You Heard at a Mary Kay Recruiting Event

mary-kay-eventWritten by Raisinberry

One of the real beefs we have here is that when we were introduced to Mary Kay the information we were told was grossly overstated. Mary Kay Corp has attempted to clean up some of the outrageous statements, designed to sell you on the opportunity, but not with too much fervor. If you had the facts, you might decide to pass. So, in an effort to balance the hype with the truth, here you go:

1. When the Directors walked upfront and introduced themselves, the “high check” or “number of cars won” figure they shared, was not an average monthly check and did not include chargebacks or expenses. In many cases, we have been hearing that top check from the same Director for over 10 years. You dont know that. They are hoping you will assume it’s an average and jump to the conclusion that all those Suited ladies are just neck deep in cash. They aren’t. The “premier” level Directors average 23K a year; Cadillac Directors average 45K and up before expenses and depending on offspring. Expenses can be anywhere from 9K to 15K a year. Nobody who is new knows that Directors buy all their own prizes, pay for their meeting rooms, newsletters, suit, shoes, training events, and even get their so called “free” car payment deducted from their commission check, when their Unit isn’t ordering enough.

You were told that weekly meetings are not mandatory. They aren’t, but the minute you get there you will be told that you won’t make any money if you don’t “plug in” every week. The pressure to attend and the attention you will get, will draw you in.

You were told that you don’t need inventory. When you go to orientation you will be told that you do. You will be told that “successful” women have a full store around $3,000 wholesale. You will be told you can not take a profit until you get to “profit level”, which of course is $3,000 worth. This is FICTION.

You are not dependent on foot traffic (and you don’t even have access to it), therefore you do not need full shelves. Having inventory based on a product line of over 200 products means you are taking a crap shoot as to whether the stuff you have is the stuff they might want.

And having more than one of anything is even more ridiculous, since you will never have volume selling (legally). Its strictly convenience to give it to the buyer at the point of purchase. Back in the day when consultants held 10 classes a week, it may have made sense. It has been DECADES since anything close to that level of selling occurred. The National average of skin care classes held per month is…drum roll….ONE.

You were told you would have three avenues of income: sales, reorders, dovetail commissions from classes you booked but gave away. You were told you could have a website presence, and sell “on the go, on the face or on the web”. This makes selling look easy and income from sales look awesome! You were given sheets that show different earning scenarios depending on how many classes you held a week, with the resultant reorder profit amounts. ALL FICTION.

You will sell friends and family who want to help you, and those first weeks in business will be about your best. From there you will have a few re-booked parties, and they will begin to dwindle until you cant reach them after they have rescheduled a number of times. Caller ID will not help your cause, as women seek to avoid you. You will then be encouraged to put out fishbowls and give free facials and try to turn them into classes-all with strangers. You will have to overcome your fear of talking with strangers and learn to give sincere compliments to anyone who will give you eye contact and smile, so that you can book them. Your entire waking life will become an ulterior motive of who can you talk to-who can you book- who can you recruit…because if you ordered inventory, on the advice of your Director, it is now rotting on your shelves.

The Mary Kay website has a beauty consultant rotation so MK gives new leads only to consultants who order $1800 wholesale and up. If you don’t keep ordering at least $1800 wholesale each quarter, you’re no longer in the running to get those leads from Mary Kay.

You have to advertise your MK business – but you can’t link to any other site than your MK site, and you’re severely restricted in what you can say. They’ll tell you that you can have a Facebook page, but again you can only post “approved” messages. The idea that MKC will help you advertise with the internet is FICTION. Reorders will not be anything like you expect. Certain customers will be loyal and stay with you, however many will attend the class that their friend may have and switch allegiances. Then there is EBAY and liquidators who undercut your price. Only no one in Mary Kay will tell you about that.

If you join anyway and your Director tells you to have a business debut, which seems like a good idea, it is actually a mini guest event for your Sales Director, to find new recruits. She will recruit your friends and family before you even get a chance to have them hold a party or order or introduce you to more customers. You will be told this is for your good-to move you up, but moving you up is for the Directors benefit-not yours. You will not know this, of course.

You will look around and wonder if the area is saturated with consultants. It is. Only they aren’t actively pursuing the “dream”. The vast majority of consultants make up a sea of personal use consultants who tried it, figured it out, got out, but kept their discount. They are called the “base unit”. Then there is 2% who got suckered up the career path and ended up doing star, car production or unit production on their own credit cards, and now HAVE to continue to try and dig out. You will not be told ANY of this.

These are only the INITIAL facts that are hidden from you as you consider the Pink Bubble. This is why PinkTruth clamors for full disclosure. Because Directors are trapped in a predatory system that needs new recruit production to survive, your best interests will be hidden from you, and hers will be encouraged. This sadly, is only a tiny portion of what you need to know about the real facts you didn’t hear at that POSITIVE and UPLIFTING Mary Kay Guest event.


  1. Jamming Berry

    Interesting to know how the “website referrals” work now. I did get one (1) after I ordered an enormous amount of stuff, which I regret now, since I was in the inventory fog still. I gave up the PWS after the contract ended though, since all it gave me was spam from a lady having her wedding and needing products for her daughter. What a waste of money that was…. And the social media rules are ridiculous! MK will host your FB page and put up posts for you? I’ve looked at all my sister’s pages and there’s nothing social about this media! The only likes are from other consultants.

    What a huge waste all around…

    1. BestDecision

      And MK brags about how many visitors they’ve had on their website after an ad, when most of them are member so their sales force going to see what the hype is. We all did it! There are far more users of MK within the sales force than real customers. It took me years to figure it out, but I saw how much money the company made off us after I was into Dirctorship. They’re killing it!

    2. Lazy Gardens

      I looked for website referrals, specifically for a small town 30 miles away where I knew there were two consultants. A GOOD place for personal service.

      Did Mary Kay give me either of those? Heck no. On every search, the nearest referral – at the top of the list – was an SD from here followed by another SD, and a rag-tag collection of IBCs from towns even further away.

      It only makes sense if you realize that their objective is NOT to best serve the end customer, but to reward recruiting and ordering machines.

  2. Enorth

    There’s a young woman not too far from me who just lost both her directorship and car (in under six months.) I’m not surprised, because the kid looked shell-shocked in every picture. More than likely, she was pushed into it.

  3. raisinberry

    Isn’t it funny how any real facts about the truth of Directorship and car are never disclosed? It is intentional that we were kept in the dark about failure rates and what was required. The fact that these things are never disclosed to targets and career path IBC’s tells you they KNOW that the info is damaging! They KNOW that truth would discourage IBC’s from trying…meaning they KNOW that what a woman gets into as a result of the career path is NOT GOOD. Can they be excused for this on any level?? Can they hide behind “it is what you make it”? If so, TELL THE TRUTH MARY KAY!

  4. raisinberry

    Back at cha, Shay!
    Happy Holiday Time to everyone, however you enjoy it! Here’s hoping that our relationships are rich and warm and friends are close, and yes, in the words of Miss Congeniality, I really do want world peace!

  5. Kristi

    It is shocking to hear other stories that are so similar to mine! I was brought in and told that the only way to be successful was to charge $1200 of product on my cc. My director insisted on making my initial purchase because “she knew what would sale.” It was actually the opposite- she ordered stuff I couldn’t sale so that I would have to keep ordering. Then she insisted I do the same to other people. I can’t believe I fell for that! It took me years to sale all that crap at yard sales. And to make it all worse- she kept talking about this being God’s purpose for me and I need to walk in my calling. Pretty sure God’s purpose for me does not include conning everyone I know and digging deeper into debt.

    1. BestDecision

      The abuse of God is everywhere in MK, and it’s sickening. The very ones that are quoting Bible verses are the ones living a double standard for themselves vs. the people they lead. A lot are incredibly vain (Hello, Pamela Shaw!), and most of the NSDs teach from theory of what should work but actually doesn’t.

      The good news for you and I is that we’re now on THIS side of the fence and it still immersed in it and believing everything we’re told.

  6. Denae

    Hi pink truth and other ladies! I’m thinking about starting MK but knew it couldn’t be as sweet as it sounded, so I came to get the scoop on what I should know before starting MK. I knew it couldn’t be as good as it sounded, but I didn’t think that it would be this bad. So I’m asking you ladies: if you had known all these things before signing up, and expected them and therefore countered for them, would you have still signed up for Mary Kay, but prepared for all of the hype? Or would you have not even bothered?

    1. Char

      I don’t think most women would sign up if they knew:

      1. MK Corporate was a corrupt company running an MLM/pyramid scheme that exploits women.

      2. They would make very little money, if any, due to that fact it’s a pyramid scheme.

      3. They would most likely go into debt funding Corporate and the tippy top of the pyramid.

      4. It takes crafty lying to the masses to get to that top.

      Most honest women aren’t prepared to do any of these when they know better and have been informed.

      Hope you make the honorable choice.

  7. No Pink For Me


    I read PT after my SD insisted on selecting my inventory. I had a hard time rectifying what I read with the person whom I thought was my friend. It’s all true. Don’t sign up. I got out after a few months when I saw my own eyes that inventory purchases, not sales, were awarded. I found the MK culture to be manipulative and spiritually abusive. I became inactive after a few months because there was no way for me to advertise, people did not want the products, and the constant pressure to spend or purchase more inventory. I couldn’t give the products away. No one wanted them. Years later my former SD tried to meet up with me because she wanted to rebuild her team. No way would I be a part of it. It led me back to PT furthering my discovery of the lies, scripts, and destruction of relationships. IMO, no. I don’t see how someone can go against MK culture and be successful.

    1. No Pink For Me

      I should add that I don’t see how anyone can be successful. It’s an outdated and potentially dangerous way of selling once you move beyond your warm market. Reading the articles on PT showed me that the consultants are the MK customers.

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