50 Reasons I’m Happy I Quit Mary Kay

Written by SuzyQ

Years after leaving Mary Kay, I think about the emotions I had when I left the big pink cult. The first thing I felt was relief. It was really, really over, and I didn’t have to worry about Mary Kay any more.  To this day, I still reflect sometimes on all the reasons I am happy that I quit Mary Kay. I thought I’d start with the top 50 reasons:

  1. Not having to worry about production. I know exactly what I will make each check, when it will be deposited, and I have all the usual “corporate” benefits from a J.O.B.
  2. I don’t have to go to events anymore. Events include the usual MKC ones like Leadership, Career Conference and Seminar, and all the others like weekly meetings, director’s meetings, area events, nsd events, retreats, power up days and on and on.
  3. My employer pays for all of my training. Everything. Really. No out of pocket expenses.
  4. I don’t get thousands of email rah rahs to pass on to my unit members, same song different day stuff.
  5. I don’t have to pretend that the 57 step MK skin care program really really works! I mean, I used it all, and none of it worked, but I convinced myself it did.
  6. I can tell people that Mary Kaycleanser really doesn’t cleanse.
  7. A little birdie keeps me up to date on my former “area wannabe” and it’s pretty grim, although just like lots of things—every now and then, they have a good month, so here comes that intermittent reinforcement thing that keeps the ole’ hamster wheel going… very much like gambling.
  8. I don’t feel embarrassed about telling people what I do for a living.
  9. I don’t have to update my unit website.
  10. I don’t have to have a home office anymore, and actually end my day at a reasonable time.
  11. I don’t have a co-pay on the car I own, and nobody can take it away. If I want a new car, I don’t have to re-qualify for it, and my insurance is cheaper.
  12. My credit cards are not maxed out to make production.
  13. I don’t have an inventory. And I learned again how much fun it is to cruise the aisles and the counters to see what’s new.
  14. The guilt is gone. No waking up in the middle of the night wondering how I am going to make all of this work.
  15. No more newsletters.
  16. No more “Fake it ‘til you make it.”
  17. Hanging out with the people I love without guilt, or without asking them to wait until after “prime people” time- 9 AM to 9PM.
  18. Not having to worry about how to spin the most recent corporate snafu to my consultants.
  19. Realizing on a deep level that truth is not negative.
  20. Not having to do the same thing over and over every month, every quarter, every year.
  21. Understanding that the MK cult is alive and well, but escape and recovery are possible.
  22. Knowing that the women who “keep the dream alive” are trying to rationalize their emotional and financial investment. I was in for 10 years, and I can’t imagine how painful it would be to have invested even more time, only to learn that this whole scheme will not work unless there is a gradual moral erosion as a director. There seems to be a sale of a soul to the devil under the mantle of “God” and “goodness.” How else can people be referred to as numbers—“It’s a numbers game. You have to work the numbers?” Ladies, please remember that those numbers are actual women with real lives and you are messing with them. (Unless you are being honest.)
  23. The cachet of being a director is comprised of sequins, smoke and mirrors.
  24. No more bees and stars everywhere.
  25. No more really ugly over-priced director suits.
  26. No more skirts, skirts, skirts. (And back in the day, closed toe shoes and pantyhose.)
  27. I can talk to women without an agenda.
  28. Learning that being in MK causes cognitive dissonance. We are told that if we can’t afford to go to an event, that is why we need to go to that event. Other examples:
  • It takes money to make money
  • You can earn executive income with a part time business
  • You own your own business
  • You can set your own hours
  • This is a numbers game
  • Mary Kay is not for everyone, but how will you know unless you try?
  • We don’t want sales people
  • You don’t need to know a lot of people
  • You can stay shy the rest of your life, or you can take the MK life improvement course
  • It only costs $100
  • You are not required to carry an inventory
  • You can’t sell from an empty wagon
  • I will match my time with your effort
  • There is no competition
  • There is room at the top
  • Never recruit anyone you wouldn’t want to share a room with at seminar (unless, except)

You all have your own examples…

You really didn’t think I would do 50 did you? There are so many tangible and intangible plusses being out of Mary Kay. It took a while for Mary Kay to get into me, and took another while to get me out of Mary Kay. It was incredibly painful at times. I burned my bridges to my former profession (as advised by my senior director—that would insure my success and motivation for Mary Kay) and I had pretty much lost my ability to speak or think of things not related to Mary Kay.

I learned that if I lost faith in Mary Kay, it meant I had also lost faith in God. My senior was fond of saying that when she died, she would have to face God and Mary Kay, and the two became somewhat interchangeable. I learned at a Bible study conducted by a nsd that it was perfectly fine to pray for production. I learned, too, that God wanted me to have a pink Cadillac because it would help bring other women to Mary Kay and God.

Other nsds told me that God had a plan for me and the plan was Mary Kay. If I abandoned my “dream,” I was letting God down. I was taught that Mary Kay was my mission field, and that it was my duty to bring women to Mary Kay. I was the only Mary Kay some people would meet; I was the only Bible some people would read. AND THIS IS NOT A CULT? Oh, please.

So, there you have it. I know my experience may not have been your experience. I hope it wasn’t. I am learning about the power of the internet. So much is available to us now that wasn’t accessible before, what a gift information can be!

If you are lurking, or if you are wondering why a site like this exists, please continue to read. Just as there are all sorts of people in Mary Kay, there are also all sorts of people on Pink Truth. Some of the stories and experiences will resonate with you, some will not.

The Mary Kay experience itself tends to be different for those who were or are directors and those who are or were consultants. If Mary Kay is working for you and you are comfortable with your decisions, good for you! If you are questioning Mary Kay, good for you!

It’s been a wild ride. Here’s to many more Mary Kay-free years!


  1. BestDecision

    One more…Not having to act excited over the hideous or uncomfortable Director suit. And not having to pay hundreds for something I don’t like. Bad colors, bad fit, bad style.

  2. raisinberry

    And individuality returns. It is an amazing side effect of years in the pink bubble, adopting others words, thoughts, deeds to try and become successful, that you lose yourself in the process. You become a conforming, compliant worker drone believing the “all you have to do is” words of this (apparently) more successful upliner. Only then you find out SHE’s “faking it till she makes it”, too!

    This multi-level product based pyramid is the longest running con in America. Why do humans routinely buy into the hype and bling of others and check their brains at the door? Stay skeptical my friends…the wolves have bought stock in Sheep Outfitters.

  3. Formykids

    Hopefully one day, once we are finally divorced…

    No more MKrap dominating every space in our house, dining room table, office, kitchen counter, basement, garage, etc., etc.

  4. Cindylu

    I totally get the embarrassment of admitting that I actually worked for such a weird organization. I also felt such relief and then a bit of PTSD set in. It wasn’t until I read about financial cults that I was aware of why my SD insisted I waste money on endless meetings, conferences etc. Oh how they drilled into us not to break up the basic. Maybe back in the 1960’s IBC’s might sell the odd basic but I rarely if ever saw that when I was a part of this pink scam.

  5. onelessSD

    All these reasons and more! So thankful to be out and free!

    I agree with Cindylu… I felt total embarrassment telling others that I was with Mary Kay… and in the first 5 years after leaving- I think I did have a bit of PTSD – I hated the color pink, I couldn’t stand seeing any pink cadillacs, or hear any songs that MK would usually play at conferences, etc. Any time I would see/hear anything MK related… I’d get heartburn. It was really weird!

    But that has mostly passed.. and I now hardly even think about any of it. I feel pity for those still stuck in the pink rut. I do check in on local sales directors that I know- watching to see if they move up the ladder, etc… most of them are pretty stuck at a lower level SD. They just can’t keep directors under them for very long. (yay!!)

    My family and my bank account are thrilled with life without MK!! 🙂

  6. BestDecision

    MK just did themselves in. Page 18 of the new Applause talks about “profits”, yet they only use a 50% profit to show how to buy a home, etc. Just because someone sells $100 doesn’t mean she keeps all of the $50. There are a LOT of expenses to running an MK business. Seminar, for example!

    They also show a Director, Tina Frantz, talking about hoe she cold calls contacts she’s been given by someone she knows. In that printed script, nowhere does it identify her with MK. Nowhere. She mention as a facial, but not the brand she’s representing.

    If one ever needed proof that MK ignores the problems associated with the business, it’s these 2 examples. There’s deceit from the top of that mauve building all the way down.

    I am so glad I got out!

    1. Conventionalmillenial

      You actually should not lead with the company name. You should be branding yourself. This goes for anything, whether it’s mary kay or whatever it is, direct sales or not. You are your brand. I teach branding as a side gig, it is a must for any self employed person these days. The amount of sales and searches of brands conducted via Instagram for example, is tremendous. You want your personal brand to be the main player. Not the brand that you’re selling or the item that you are trying to get sold.

      Seminar isn’t a requirement, and I never went. But I personally didn’t find anything wrong with paying for it. I pay my way for my real estate conferences and conventions every year, just comes with the territory of being self employed really. I would hope common sense prevails, regarding taxes while being self employed. General rule of thumb is save 25% of what you make. You may owe less, but better to set it aside anyway.

      However, common sense is not so common, and they should put a blurb about accounting and taxes some where. At least cover their asses.

      I take it, that it has been quite a while since you dropped mary kay, if you aren’t familiar with Tina. The stuff on this list, alot of it is incorrect as far as numbers and standards. I get the impression that the writer of the article also dropped mary kay at least 10 years ago.

      I don’t mean this is a rude way….but I am not sure if it’s healthy that people are writing or reading on this site day after day for years. I would think moving on would be better. It’s like…youre still consumed by it. You’re reading the applause….you quit but you keep looking. It’s like…stalking your ex husbands social media. It’s not healthy for you.


      1. MLM Radar

        You actually SHOULD lead with the company name if you exclusively sell for one company. Any other lead-in would be a misrepresentation.

        Don’t tell me you’re “Conventional Millenial, independent car sales rep” if you only sell Fords. You’re a Ford rep.

        Don’t tell me you’re “Conventional Millenial, independent insurance agent” if you only sell Allstate. You’re an Allstate rep.

        Don’t tell me you’re “Conventional Millenial, independent realtor” if you only sell through ReMaxx. You’re a ReMaxx realtor.

        And don’t tell me you’re “Conventional Millenial, independent beautician” if you only sell Mary Kay. You’re a Mary Kay sales rep, and you’re not a beautician. Plus, Mary Kay’s contract prohibits you from selling any other company’s products.

        Leaving off the company name would be a lie of omission.

        1. I'll sell you a Ferd

          I sell cars. I’ve had to do some cold calling on old age lists (people who have submitted their name and number online or were at the dealership and didn’t buy.) 95% of them didn’t answer their phone. Another 4% answered and said they bought elsewhere. I would thank them for letting me know and told them to keep my dealership in mind for future purchases. I mentioned that I was from the dealership from the get go, because they would be super confused if I didn’t. I imagine it’s the same for any type of sales. If I had a stranger call me and start trying to have a casual conversation, I’d probably hang up and block them.

          The only time I sell my personality is when the customer is already in the store. Because honestly, they could go to any other lot and purchase the same vehicle for the same price. I’m the only thing in the way of them doing so.

      2. QueenOfTheTanned

        I don’t mean this is in a rude way either, but we will ‘move on’ as soon as MK and other MLMs stop exploiting our friends and loved ones. You say we are ‘consumed by it’ however we say we are ‘compelled’ by it. We are here to be a resource. We are here to help others who think they are alone when they start to think for themselves. Actually this is VERY healthy for us. We do not attempt to hustle thousands of dollars off anyone; we share our experiences for free. We console those who feel the tremendous guilt of lost time and money. Tracy could have moved on with her career (and I’m sure she has), but she helps lead the charge of against predatory MLMs. It’s more than ‘bitching about MK everyday’…much more. I’m tired of seeing women putting hopes, dreams, money and time into lies. MLMs exploit women and families. Period. How is that unhealthy?

      3. BestDecision

        When I gave up 1/3 of my life for it, I happily turned my Cadillac in and resigned less than 10 years ago. In fact, a great deal of the examples in this article are still taught. Because I gave up so much of my life in that business, I am on here periodically to help others see they aren’t crazy for feeling jipped and to correct the naysayers with accurate facts.

        Unlike you, I don’t talk down to people. (Yes, you came across as rude and treated people on here like we’re old and ridiculous.) Unlike you, I was building a unit when you were still a child. Unlike you, I went to every Seminar while I was in the company. Unlike you, I paid attention to details and kept waiting for MK to step up and print things accurately.

        It’s obvious you were never a Director, either, so you can’t possibly absorb what the article is explaining. You LOSE money in MK, and not just because you don’t watch your finances.

        Please, please mind your tone and Google the new Applause (as I did) to see what’s really happening in MK now. I personally know Tina and many others listed in there, and I think you’re barking way up the wrong tree.

      4. Sorcha Carpenter

        No actually my cousins are trying to get me to join but my gut told me not to. I then began reading about others experiences online to disprove or reinforce my beliefs. I wasn’t “stalking my ex-boyfriend on social media” I have never been with MK. But your stunning personality matches that of others on the MK payroll and would make me even less inclinded to buy from you. Although you say her numbers and comments are bs and out of date, you don’t fill us in with the correct ones. It appears that you don’t like some of the interworkings and tactics of MK being exposed. As a MK customer, whom is currently using over 6 MK products daily, I can say that some of the “50 reasons” resonated with me, from the customer stand point, so I can only imagine how former directors/consultants feel.

        1. BestDecision

          I actually found some of my old spreadsheets with unit sales on them. Excluding my personal sales and using only what my unit members gave me on their Weekly Accomplishment Sheets, here are their averages:

          $60 per facial
          $175 per Skin Care Class
          $250 per show/open house

          Here’s how to translate that:
          A facial from start to finish requires a minimum of 1.5 hours, which means the gross profit would be $20/hour. Subtract taxes and it’s $15/hour max gross profit for nearly 2 hours of work.

          A Skin Care Class from start to finish requires a minimum of 3 hours round-trip, which means the gross profit would be $29.16/hour. Subtract taxes and it’s $21.88/hour max for 3 hours of work.

          A show could be the same amount of time as a Skin Care Class, or it could be all day long if it was a Christmas Open House. So, it’s harder to break down. I can personally vouch that open houses were ABSURD wastes of time. My unit held their own, collaborated with one another, and sometimes brought their customers to mine, and they NEVER made good money.

          In the above examples, notice that the hourly pay is close to MINIMUM WAGE. That’s a lot of sweat, tears, and effort for very low results.

          Congratulations for not making a very big mistake as many of us did. I can’t believe I devoted so much to so little.

  7. pinkvictim

    “I teach branding as a side gig…” “I pay my way for my real estate conferences and conventions every year.”

    MK “gig” not so hot, eh?

    “However, common sense is not so common, and they should put a blurb about accounting and taxes some where. At least cover their asses.”

    So, they don’t really need to care about IBC accounting and taxes, just cover their asses.

    “The stuff on this list, alot of it is incorrect as far as numbers and standards.”

    A lot of it is correct too. Yet, you fail to point that out.

    “I get the impression that the writer of the article also dropped mary kay at least 10 years ago.”

    Maybe, but not much in MKrap has has changed in those 10 years. Still the same cult using the same lies and fraud to indoctrinate women to act against their own best interests.

    “I would think moving on would be better.”

    Yes, move along now, don’t be a negative Nelly. Sit in that corner holding the stuffed skunk and think Pink!

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