Facts, opinions, and the real story behind Mary Kay Cosmetics.

Mary Kay Product Changes Through the Years: Lipgloss

Written by PinkPunch

Question: Does MK constantly change product packaging, colors and formulas etc… to:

  1. stay on the cutting edge and look up-to-date
  2. or because they know you'll be stuck with the old and forced to buy the new, which keeps ordering stats higher???

You decide!

I was in MK for 4 years so here's the many changes just within this short time.

Picture of lip gloss packaging:

Picture of available colors:
Summer 2005 (Which means from March 2004 – June 2005 is 1 year 3 months later):

You see they've completely changed the packaging and discontinued every color except for Natural and Cream & Sugar. The formula was also changed, with sparkles, except for the Natural.

Winter 2006 (Remember this stays current until March 2007)

So let me see here… This time around there are six more discontinued colors: Pink Pearl, Cranberry, Cocoa Creme, Watermelon, Tiger Lily, and Pink Allure.


Seven new colors are added: Coral Rose, Melon Sorbet, Gold Rush, Sugarberry, Berry Sparkle, Sweet Raisin, Natural changed to Starry (with sparkles).

If you look closely the discontinued colors are very close to the new colors:
1. Cranberry- Sugarberry
2. Watermelon- Berry Sparkle
3. Pink Pearl – Melon Sorbet
4. Cocao Creme – Sweet Raisn
5. Tiger Lily – Melon Sorbet
6. Natural – Starry

Hmmmm, Really it seems the only "New" color is Gold Rush?

Winter 2007 (so from March 2007 – December 2007 is only 9 months later! ), there really are no new colors, but a product change indeed.

There you have it! MKC has changed their lip gloss 4 times from March 2004 to December 2007 (Not even a full 3 years time with 4 changes)

Decide for yourself!

Was it really necessary for all of these changes? In my opinion, NO! Especially when so-called "new" colors were hardly any different from the last ones!

It is just another Mary Kay scam to get consultants to order more products Remember that the REAL Mary Kay customer is the consultant.

How many times were you told to sell your old stuff at 1/2 off and buy the new, even though you haven't sold the old at 1/2 off yet?

Mary Kay says consultants should "think like a retailer," but there is no comparison to an actual store like Target and a consultant. Target sells a huge volume. Target does not buy the "New" product until they have sold the old first. Sure, they might put it on sale but they do not buy the new until the old is almost completely gone.

When you send your customers a Look Book you are advertising the "New" and most of those customers want the new…unless you give them the old at 1/2 off. Well fine, maybe you will sell off your old stuff but by the time you do there has just been another product change and now you are stuck with the last product change which puts you at square one, again.

And selling products at half off is just running in place. You've worked all those hours to sell the products, you've spent money on samples and look books and gas and supplies…. yet you sold the product at half off so you're losing money on the deal. But you have to sell the old stuff somehow, right?

And you HAVE to stock the new products because they're in the Look Book and customers will want the newer things…

It's all a clever game designed by Mary Kay to keep consultants buying products, whether they've sold their old stock or not.

And about those packaging changes that Mary Kay insists are necessary to stay "on trend"? Real cosmetics and personal care product companies do not do product changes very often. I've used a lot of Paul Mitchell products, for over 20 years now, and his packaging has changed only 3 or 4 times AND those were very subtle changes. People may not have even noticed the differences.

Welcome to Mary Kay's product con.


  1. advertisingchick

    I had so many customers ask me about products from the past and since they were discontinued they didn't end up buying anything because they wanted what they were used to.  Now I'm sure MK supporters would say that doesn't happen often but it still happened and it was frustrating.  Spending 2 hours holding a class (and you know the amount of hours to prep then post) then someone didn't want to buy anything because MK no longer carries their products!!!

    1. 15yrspink

      Oh, yes, it happens all the time. Some customers may want the latest and greatest, but mine want to be able to get the products they know and like, and they get frustrated when I tell them they’ve been discontinued. I have also been burned by stocking up on products I sell that get discontinued. So it’s often a lose-lose in my experience.

  2. onelessSD

    Yeah, all the product 'updates' always got to me – especially at the end.  I was tired of trying to 'sell all the new and better benefits' to the customer.  By the time the last update to the gloss line happened… I had so many of the previous colors, I just continued to sell thru them.  I was told by a fellow SD that I really should only promote the newer ones, use the 'older' ones as giveaways- I just looked at her and said "the only thing 'better' about the newer ones is that it has different packaging.  Why would I go out and spend more money for newer packaging when these are still fine."  She just gave me this look of disbelief and walked away.  I giggled and realized that I wasn't a follower anymore!

  3. morningstar

    Lipgloss madness, I called the product changes.  Like others, some customers commented on the changes almost every time they wanted buy more gloss and liked what they had purchased..Poof not available (except ebay – another topic). 
     Gosh MK  corp I -got so tired of the hamster wheel and these actions were eyeopening.  Of course MK has all the objections covered.  "Doesn't your client deserve the latest"  "You are holding back your business"…."They will LOVE the new product'…..blah blah blah…..
    Aren' t they phasing out eyeliners and glosses again at the end of  2011? 
    Correct me if I am wrong, and if someone knows what the change out is in 2011 please post again so others will know what not to buy (for those that still are purchasing from MK). 

  4. MLM Radar Detector

    Speaking as a customer, I have nothing nice to say about these constant product changes.
    When the bottle runs out, or my tan fades as winter approaches, I WANT THE SAME THING I BOUGHT BEFORE!!! I have enough going on in my life already. I don't want be flipping through a catalog or trying sample sizes (which I know the company does NOT give away) to figure out if last year's "Soft Beige" is closer to "Natural Warmth" or "Beige Cream." I bought "Soft Beige" last time. All I want now is another bottle of "Soft Beige" (maybe with a moisturizer this time) and if the Mary Kay IBC can't produce it, I'm going to Wal-Mart!!!
    Same thing when I accidentally melt a lipstick in a hot car. I already spent enough time coordinating lip liner and lipstick colors with my summer foundation shades and my business clothes. If I melted a "Raspberry Frost" lipstick I don't want to go back to Square One choosing between "Watermelon Shine" or "Plum Raisin" or "Warm Rose." If I can't get another "Raspberry Frost" lipstick, I'm going back to Wal-Mart where the colors stay consistent over time.
    And the next time an IBC offers me a "Free Facial" to show me the latest products, you can bet I'm going to find something else to do that day, that week, that month….

    1. Caroline Thompson

      I totally agree! I had always been an Estée Lauder girl, but my mother in law got me hooked on MK. I enjoyed a 20 year history with MK. After I moved, I had a couple of years gap (I didn’t have a MK lady) and when I came back to the line, pretty much everything I had always used wasn’t available anymore. I kept trying new products & was consistently disappointed. Now, even the few products that I liked are discontinued. I’ve gone back to Estée Lauder where I can still get the things I love and can continue to get them. Shame on MK!

  5. Ne-Pink-Plus

    TimeWise skin care was initially released about a week after I received my initial inventory order.  I can remember the sinking feeling knowing that all the product I had just ordered was already obsolete.  My SD played the other side of the coin with me, saying that the classic basic skin care would still be advertised, but I would still need to get TimeWise for skin care classes.  It was years later that I discovered she already knew TimeWise was coming out and allowed me to order $600 worth of obsolete skin care anyway.  Lies of omission are still lies.  

  6. Moosemama

    So since then they have added 2 colors of lip gloss, a Fancy Nancy and a Bronze Bliss
    Directly from Kim Evans' unit net site
    "Mary Kay Eyeliner samplers, Mary Kay Lip Liner samplers and Mary Kay NouriShine Lip Gloss samplers will move to "last chance" section due to new formulas launching with the Dec 16, 2011, Consultant order form." 

  7. movin-on-w/life

    Here is another "insider" scoop about upcoming product changes and new things coming out in the next quarter.  I have always informed my people about the changes but this change was another nail in the coffin for me, and from what I can tell … since I didn't go!! it was never mentioned at Seminar.   Here is some cut & paste from a Memo.
    TimeWise® Day Solution Sunscreen SPF 25* will soon feature sunscreen SPF 35*! This is great news for your customers who are looking for a higher level of sun protection in their age-fighting regimen.
    TimeWise® Age-Fighting Moisturizer will also receive an SPF boost — from sunscreen SPF 15* to SPF 30*. You can look for these changes on the March 16, 2012 Consultant Order form; and there will be no price increase associated with these improvements.

    Mary Kay® sun care products will also undergo changes this spring. In the March 16, 2012 quarter, Mary Kay® Sunscreen SPF 50* ($14 suggested retail) will be introduced to fill the requests of those looking for increased sun protection when spending time outdoors. This product will also receive an update to packaging.
    Also in the March 16, 2012 quarter, Mary Kay® Subtle Tanning Lotion and Mary Kay® Lip Protector Sunscreen SPF 15* will receive new packaging. There will be no price increase associated with this change.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~   BLEH.

  8. Scrib

    I remember attending an SCC for a director friend.  I was set to purchase the then-silver compact and a tube of foundation.  The director refused to sell me the foundation because (oh horrors!)  she would be breaking the Basic.  I asked her why then, was the foundation listed on its own for purchase in the Look Books?  She was unable to answer me but kept insisting that maybe "other" consultants broke the Basic (and so didn't have "integrity,") but she would not.  I ripped up my sales ticket and told her I would be passing on the purchase. 

    That decision proved to be a wise choice.  Not long after that class, the silver compacts were discontinued and replaced with the black ones.  I would have been so angry having spent my hard-earned money on something that was going out the window a month down the road, and I know consultants have to feel the same way with MK's numerous inventory changes. 

  9. Deflated Pink Bubble

    Oh the product changes.  The only thing that is consistant about Mary Kay products is that nothing is consistent.  The lip gloss changes are mind boggling.  Only one time was there an actual formula change.  That change was for the better.  The texture and flavor changed and it was a good thing.  Now they are talking about another formula change.  When I stopped selling MK I had over 200 lipsticks and lip glosses.  Most all of them were colors that were no longer in the current line.  Half of the product I had was either discontinued or went thru a packaging change.  I had almost 4 thousand dollars worth of product that was either discontinued or had a packaging change.  The Mary Kay Money Pit.

  10. Trish

    Just to be objective I think we should show a side by side comparison to a drug store brand to see their changes, if any, in packaging and coloring.  Perhaps if people saw the drug store brands with less changes they'd realize something is up.

  11. Pingback: Mary Kay Product Changes: Botanical Skin Care and More | Pink Truth

  12. TRACY

    I understand the need to update products. However, in the case of Mary Kay, I believe these “updates” are very carefully crafted to ensure more ordering by consultants who already have unsold products on their shelves. (And to the Kaybots who would say it’s their own fault that it’s unsold, I say that no, it’s unsold because the market is saturated with overpriced, mediocre products, and that’s why they don’t sell and there are 50,000+ auctions for MK products on ebay at any given moment.)

  13. Jen

    I have no interest in selling MK, never have – I have had my own experiences with MLM schemes, one of my best friends sold Amway – still does! And it is so obvious that these product changes are to get the MK sellers to keep ordering, the company could not care less what happens after that.

    All that being said, I do like some of the MK products. Don’t any of you x-MK sellers have a place where you can get rid of your extras at a decent price, just to get your money back? I’d love to know if there is such a place.

  14. Elaine Ries

    Just wanted to ask one question. My favorite color of lipstick is Pink Daisy with Tiger Lily Lipgloss – of course they were discontinued. Have searched and has all the MK reps search for me with no luck, Then I just happened to go on EBay – and there it was – lots of Pink Daisy and lots of Tiger Lily available for reps like most of you that have posted to this site. I too got stuck with lots of discontinued product on my shelf and was so frustrated when we retired and moved tlhat I gave it all to a women’s shelter. Enough of all that – my real question is – does lipstick and lipgloss have an expiration date??? Don’t have my chart anymore so can’t check. Was told by one rep that as long as it was packaged and the air had not gotten to it – it was good – and of course, if t didn’t smell bad. Can someone please let me know. Just ordered 3 tubes of Pink Daisy and 2 tubes of Tiger Lily. Thanks!

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