Mary Kay Facial Scam

A Mary Kay lady was aghast. Someone on Facebook said a store sold her information to a Mary Kay consultant, and the woman received an email she thought was a “scam for a facial.”

Guess what? The woman was right. It WAS a scam for a fake facial. David’s Bridal did give her information to a Mary Kay consultant.

David’s Bridal is a popular place to collect names. The consultant can pay David’s a monthly fee to get the list of women who tried on bridal gowns. You can’t try on a gown without giving your contact information, and no one will tell you that your information will be sold to a Mary Kay consultant. You may also see a consultant who has set up a table at a Davids, but that surely will cost the consultant money too.

Mary Kay consultants contact the brides  to offer them a “free facial” or “free wedding makeover.” It’s the same old scam that has been used for decades by MK ladies.

There is very little that is “free” about this. You’re going to clean your own face with Mary Kay products. (Not a facial.) You’re going to apply MK makeup to your own face. (Yep, this they call a “makeover.”) Then they’re going to try to sell you products. Then they’re going to try to recruit you, because who couldn’t use some extra money when you’re planning a wedding? Except you’re not going to make money. They’re going to twist your arm to buy thousands of dollars of inventory, because that’s how the money is made by the upline.

36 Comments

  1. MLM Radar

    A Mary Kay lady did my wedding makeup and told me I looked gorgeous. She also talked me into buying over $200 of products.

    What I didn’t realize, but what was very obvious in my wedding photos, was that the only makeup style this Mary Kay lady knew was “Hollywood hooker.”

    I was mortified. I didn’t wear makeup at all for a very long time after that.

  2. BestDecision

    David’s Bridal sells a list of brides that are forced to give their contact info to even try on a gown. The list costs the MK person $300/month (or that’s what it was some years ago). None of the brides are told they’re going to be emailed, called, mailed, or texted by a MK Consultant, and I remember Cindy Machado-Flippen had a CD all about how she worked those lists for leads. It’s gross cold calling, and it’s sad DB doesn’t respect their brides’ privacy.

  3. Neverpink

    This happened to me. I gave the MK Hunbot Pinktruth’s web address and she stopped contacting me. 😉

    That is, after I had asked what spa she worked with, because she didn’t say she was with MK at first. She kept asking me to bring in “all of my bridesmaids” for “free pampering and microdermabrasion”. I thought she was a legitimate esthetician.

    Once she finally said she was with MK, I was so angry. I felt so lied to!

  4. Char

    Yep, and it happened to me and my daughter only three months ago. First, an apology to any bride here who actually bought their dress at David’s Bridal, as I wouldn’t want to detract from their experience. I’m not sure if all their stores are like mine, so I’m only conveying this about my one location:

    We were reluctant to even step foot in David’s Bridal, as it is known in my area like a K-Mart of bridal shops……but we did want to exhaust all options. It was indeed like a discount chain store with low-pile dirty carpet, generic silver racks of dresses lined up, panels of fluorescent lights covering the ceiling, and a row of dressing rooms with swing doors (like commercial restrooms only slightly bigger stalls without a toilet).

    As soon as we entered we were given a clipboard, and my daughter filled it out. There was no reference to “Mary Kay” listed and definitely no fish bowl.

    She tried two dresses to be polite, and then we ran out of that pit of a store to never return. Guess what she got about a month later? A free MK spa-like Bridal beauty experience!

    Excuse me! We went to look for wedding dresses and not have her information sold to a pyramid scheme like Mary Kay who will then prey on my daughter to join. Fortunately, she knows better as I have educated her about MLM, but I fear for all the other vulnerable brides out there. I’ve called DB 1-844-400-3222 toll-free to complain about them selling my daughter’s information to an endless-chain recruiting scheme that exploits women. I encourage everyone to do the same.

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  5. morningstar

    Back in the day (90s) I heard about this going on, went to David’s Bridal in Westminster Co and was taken in the back room and for 100.00 cash I could have the customer list that spring. Trouble is I am sure they are selling the same list to many people. Looked around at the storage area, and got the heck otta of there. This is not new thing and really takes down davids’ bridal in my mind.

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  6. NayMKWay

    I’ve seen variations of this story several times on Reddit’s r/AntiMLM sub. The best advice I saw there for those wanting to shop at David’s Bridal: be ready with fake contact info. Use the number of a robo-dialer from your phone’s call history as your phone number. Email addresses are just as easy to counterfeit.

    Or just push their clip board back at them and walk out, telling them you don’t like people harassing you.

      1. MLM Radar

        Ethical employees would ask. And it would take them a whole month to collect 100 names. Maybe less if you tell her she’d be entered into a contest, but you have to be careful making promises.

        Unethical David’s Bridal employees know that the sooner they fill up the list of names and personal info, the sooner they get paid. So you badger everyone who walks through the door to cough up their info. Make up whatever rules you need to get her to cooperate. “You have to hand over your personal data before you try on a dress. No contact info and the dressing room stays locked! We don’t care if you buy a dress or not, but you WILL hand over your phone number!”

        If there’s easy money in it, why shoot yourself in the foot? After all, it’s not like you said she won’t get called. You just kind of overlooked mentioning that part.

        1. Shay

          Ok, just got my text literally 30 seconds ago. My grind worked at DB and she said she wasn’t paid to get names, they would take names and ask if they wanted their names to be given to vendors and it literally was just checking a box.
          She also said she assumed its corporate who handles it from there and never really thought about it.

  7. roo2

    https://www.weddingwire.com/wedding-forums/davids-bridal-won-a-free-mary-kay-bridal-makeover/2fa0699473d1c5e3.html

    It is even a thread on wedding wire some of the comments are pretty good

    Also Allie Zorno is posting her inventory on her instastory. Its pretty crazy to amass that much Mary Kay and think one day you will actually sell it all. I am sure the experience of being a Mary Kay rep anymore is, walks into room announces Mary Kay. People scatter like roaches when the lights come on

  8. Rebecca

    I’m sure that the site proprietor and posters are way ahead of me on this (because I’ve read several articles/posts on here the last two days, and this is clearly a savvy group). So, I would love to hear the take from some of you on the shutting down of MK in Australia/NZ. It sounds like no warning was given to the consultants, and now their site is shut-down so they are having trouble trying to return inventory.
    https://www.reddit.com/r/antiMLM/comments/fdnz8s/breaking_mary_kay_australianz_shut_down_effective/

  9. Harlie

    I would actually have to disagree with a lot of these comments. It sucks that David’s Bridal is giving out information of their clientele like that, however the whole point of a Mary Kay facial and makeover is to be able to know what you’re doing. I’ve gotten makeovers before (not from Mary Kay) and I go out loving how I look but then realize I have no idea how to do that on myself so if I really wanna look like that again I’ll have to go get another makeover. I’ve been to a Mary Kay facial and makeover session and I absolutely loved it! They teach you how to do things yourself so now I’m able to make my makeup look amazing just from home without having to go somewhere to get it done. I feel bad for women who have had bad experiences with MK women because I’ve met plenty of MK women and was never conned into buying anything or joining the company.

    1. BestDecision

      Yet, it’s the wording and scripts that pull brides in and make them feel they’re getting “pampered”. No bride wants to learn anything. She wants to be treated with calm, peace, and class before her wedding. She doesn’t want to rub a charcoal mask on herself at a kitchen table, nor does she want a sales pitch of any type.

      You have a right to your opinion, but my experience with brides and MK are completely opposite.

    2. The Asian Girl

      Girl, go to Sephora and get a makeover with QUALITY products. I’d rather shell out for Pat McGrath and NARS rather than use that sidewalk chalk Mary Kay hawks as eyeshadow. The foundation range is a freakin’ joke, 2/3 of it are varying shades of light beige; almost as bad as Younique.

  10. Amber D Sterpka

    I’m a Mary Kay Beauty Consultant and we do not scam people. A facial is a makeover first of all. We are not Estheticians. We don’t claim to be but we do get educated in skin care, color, makeup, etc. We love our products so much so that we want every woman out there to try them! It would be ashamed to keep Mary Kay such a secret to ourselves. We only want the best for our customers and want to give them an opportunity to try Mary Kay products before they buy, that’s why we offer free facials. There is never an obligation to buy. If you buy, it’s because you liked the product, we never force anyone to buy anything! You can always say no! Mary Kay is not a pyramid company either, you are not obligated to recruit. You can work your business however you want, it is your own business. There are a few restrictions if you want your discount. There are thousands and thousands of Mary Kay Consultants that win beautiful jewelry every month for doing a job well done, including myself, where else are you going to find a job that does that for you and lets you know how much they appreciate you! Where else are they going to give you a car and pay 95% of your insurance on top of that for doing a fantastic job! I don’t know any other job where you can work from home, work your own hours, get jewelry, and cars for doing a great job, can you? Mary Kay is a real job, NOT a scam, I see women win cars everyday! My Director is on her 9th car! She gets a new one every 2 years.

    1. Destiny Angel

      If I want a makeover I can get one from my local chemist or make-up store, before covid anyway, we are just starting a lower level of quarantine so maybe that is again possible . Free and done by a professional with no pressure to buy.

      If it’s your own business, why can’t you advertise where and when you want? Why can’t you sell on eBay? If it’s your own business, why were women left without theirs when MK decided to pull the plug on Australia and New Zealand market places?

      And why did you choose to post on a topic that is a year old instead on one in the past week?

    2. BestDecision

      Honey, she doesn’t “get one” every 2 years. She qualifies for it by hitting numbers. And, when you book those facials, do you tell them you’re not an esthetician and aren’t licensed? Sadly, that’s what they’re signing up for and completely yer going to get it.

      Why do I know these things? I was in MK over a DECADE. I drove cars, wore diamond bar pins on my shoulder, and I teased my unit with fabric swatches of the coveted Director suit every year.

      MK is not a job at all because you’re not employed. In my career, I don’t have to drive a car chosen by some corporate fleet department. Nor do I have to use a calculator to determine if I’m going to have a car payment for the next 3 months or not. My career doesn’t CHARGE ME $900/MONTH for 3 months in a row if I have a slow quarter. I don’t have to count awards or perks as part of my income as I did in MK.

      MK is always way behind other brands and is JUST NOW launching a retinol. Other brands have had one for years. MK is retailing it for $120, but you and I both know women are going to be furious when they realize it lasts 4-5 months, per the use-up rate in the new Applause.

      So, keep on backing the brand that lied about animal testing for YEARS. The brand that salivates over China being a rising market for them…and, therefore, conducts animal testing to be sold there. Use the menu at the top to look at past issues of Applause and see the difference month-to-month comparison of how much lower all the numbers are for November 2020 to prior Novembers.

      I’m sorry you’re misinformed, duped, and trusting enough to believe all the scripts that have been used on you. I feel really sorry for you.

      Signed,
      A Former Cadillac Driver

  11. Enorth

    — “win beautiful jewelry every month for doing a job well done”
    It’s based on the $ amount spent on ordering products from MK and/or signing up new IBCs for MK.

    — “women win cars every day”
    They don’t “win” cars. In fact, IBCs are instructed not to use that language.
    Rather, IBCs “earn the use of a MK car”, and it’s a lease.

    1. Peggy Hicks

      And they don’t tell you that the jewelry, trips, & cars are taxable income which will show up on your Form 1099. The diamonds are poor quality & the gold is the only thing of value. No thank you!! I’d rather have money instead of “prizes.” I would put that money aside & earmark it for payment of self-employment taxes. Too many MK consultants have gotten massive sticker shock at tax time, & it’s unconscionable that they’re not told about that up front.

      1. Ruby Slippers

        Oh and the “free” car that was on the 1099. As income, as if!!
        $95 insurance for a Chevy Cruze and occasional co-pays. A bad month and you were fronting 400 out of your commission for the car. Chevy Cruze’s were a $99 lease special from a regular dealer. 🤦‍♀️ smh

        1. Heather

          This is one of the many reasons I took the cash compensation versus the car. A – the car was the base model in nearly every case. B – I could get something considerably better for the money I received (read: I could purchase, not lease, a fully-loaded vehicle). And C – The Grand Am was a great car, yet when GM discontinued it and offered the Vibe, I darn near gagged. The Grand Prix was also great, especially that 3800 series engine. But noooooo. Pontiac had to fold, and the car selection turned crappier.

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