Digging Deeper: Mary Kay Sues Allison LaMarr for Violating the NSD Agreement

Mary Kay Sues Allison LaMarrRecently I received a tip that Mary Kay Inc. had sued Allison LaMarr and her company Driven, Inc. I promptly went to research the Dallas court records, and found not only the suit against Allison, but also a whole slew of lawsuits and related court actions filed by Mary Kay.

The lawsuit was initially filed on August 26, 2011, and many of the allegations made by Mary Kay against LaMarr are similar to those made against former MK NSD Amy Dunlap in the lawsuit Mary Kay Cosmetics filed against her. You will remember that Allison left Mary Kay (she called it “retiring”) after becoming “the fastest ever to NSD” and promptly having her earnings tank.

Allison’s message to everyone when quitting Mary Kay was:

“Several years ago I left corporate America as a frustrated employee to pursue my dream life as an entrepreneur. Then, almost overnight, I became a frustrated entrepreneur. Something had to change…I was working extremely hard without ever producing a payoff.”

And now Mary Kay is going after Allison, her (almost ex-) husband James LaMarr, and their company Driven, Inc. for violating the National Sales Director Agreement.

Digging Deeper, the name of Allison’s eNewsletter takes on a whole new meaning, as Allison seems to be digging herself deeper into a hole of failed career attempts, trying to recapture the sparkle she once had as a revered member of the Mary Kay sales force.

Allison LaMarr became a Mary Kay NSD on October 1, 2006. Her contract likely looked like this one signed by Amy Dunlap when she became an NSD in 2005. Mary Kay Inc. alleges that Allison violated the NSD agreement she signed, saying in the complaint:

12. As part of her obligation to use her best efforts to promote the sale of Mary Kay’s product, Ms. LaMarr agreed not to promote, distribute or sell to other members of the Mary Kay independent sales force without Mary Kay’s prior written approval any products or services not produced, sold, or endorsed in writing by Mary Kay. She similarly agreed not to promote, distribute, or sell to anyone products which are not produced, sold, or distributed by Mary Kay in a manner which would falsely designate or suggest, or would likely suggest or indicate such products as originating with, or endorsed by Mary Kay.

13. Nothwithstanding those restrictions, Mary Kay allowed Ms. LaMarr to author, produce, publish, and market original creative works, including books audiocassette tapes and videotapes using Mary Kay’s trademarks, provided however, those materials are submitted for Mary Kay’s prior approval regarding the content, form, and method of distribution of any such work. In executing her NSD Agreement, she agreed that her right to sell or distribute such works is expressly conditioned on entering into an appropriate licensing agreement with Mary Kay.

C. Ms. LaMarr’s Violations of the NSD Agreement

14. Defendant Drive, Inc. is a vehicle for Ms. LaMarr’s motivational speaking and coaching business. As part of that business, Ms. LaMarr created a number of website, including and, on which she, among other things, linked to Mary Kay’s website and to certain tools, training aids, spreadsheets, documents, and other information designed to assist IBCs succeed (sic) in their Mary Kay business. In addition, Ms. LaMarr offered for sale certain unlicensed creative works, including various DVDs and other materials, that purported to help IBCs and Independent Sales Directors succeed in their Mary Kay businesses.

15. Mary Kay notified Ms. LaMarr in writing that her conduct violated her NSD Agreement. In its letters to Ms. LaMarr, Mary Kay alleged that she promoted, distributed, and offered for sale products and services developed by Driven, Inc. to members of the Mary Kay independent sales force. It also alleged that she promoted, distributed, and offered for sale products and services developed by Driven, Inc. in a manner which was likely to cause confusion regarding Mary Kay’s endorsement, affiliation, or approval of those products. Mary Kay demanded that Ms. LaMarr cease immediately from engaging in those activities. Ms. LaMarr refused to comply with her NSD Agreement and Mary Kay’s demand. Instead, she continued to sell her DVDs, audio tapes, and other materials to members of the Mary Kay independent sales force without Mary Kay’s approval and without an appropriate licensing agreement.

D. Ms. LaMarr’s Termination of the NSD Agreement and Continued Violations.

16. On July 5, 2010, Ms. LaMarr notified Mary Kay of her “early retirement” as an NSD. In her statement, she explained that her retirement would “allow [her] to focus on [her] personal passion of empowering all women in business,” and that she will be “better equipped to serve this purpose as an individual without being actively involved in a particular organization.” Mary Kay confirmed receipt and accepted Ms. LaMarr’s termination notice on July 8, 2010.

How interesting that it appears Allison “retired” because Mary Kay was trying to hold her to the NSD Agreement she signed?

The lawsuit goes on to recite similar NSD agreement provisions as in the Amy Dunlap lawsuit:

… Ms. LaMarr agreed to certain on-going obligations for a period of two years after the termination of the agreement. She agreed not to (1) solicit or recruit Mary Kay’s independent sales force to sell products or services other than those sold by Mary Kay; (2) use any names, mailing lists or other non-public information she obtained during her association with Mary Kay for recruiting or promoting the sale of any other company’s products in the United States; (3) solicit or induce any of Mary Kay’s independent sales force from terminating their business relationship with Mary Kay; and (4) receive any financial benefit from any other company or business organization based upon the solicitation, recruitment, enrollment for such company of any person whom she knows or has reason to believe is under contract as a member of Mary Kay’s independent sales force.

And then we get to the good parts:

18. Upon information and belief, Ms. LaMarr created a website in February 2011 “specifically for [her] MK sisters as a place for [her] to share all of the resources [that she] collected during [her] amazing time with MK. from Consultant all the way through National – and beyond!” She purports to offer a “wealth of free information” in her “Library,” as well as other “valuable resources [that she] created to help catapult yourself to success” in her “Store.” She also solicits users to join her “PINK!” mailing list to receive her periodic “eColumn ‘Digging Deeper,'” which she represents is read by “tens of thousands worldwide.” The website has separate links for “Consultants” and “Directors,” which point to various “MK resources” that she suggests will lead to, among other things, “DRASTIC” and “HUGE” results in their businesses.

19. In additional to creating this website, Ms. LaMarr also accepted employment, or otherwise became affiliated with another direct sales organization that purports to offer for sale a line of skin care products through a “global network of Independent Consultants.” Ms. LaMarr joined this organization as its “Corporate Trainer,” and in that role, has touted her prior experience in becoming “the fastest person in company history to reach the top independent position,” in becoming “the fastest to reach $1 million in team sales,” in having the “highest first year team sales,” and in becoming the “fastest to millionaire status.” Ms. LaMarr appears to be responsible for recruiting and training this organization’s sales force.

20. In late December 2010, a number of IBCs began to receive email solicitations from Ms. LaMarr’s new employer. Some of these email solicitations refer to Ms. LaMarr as a former Mary Kay NSD, and often contain links that feature videos of Ms. LaMarr sharing information in her capacity as a corporate trainer. In February 2011, members of Mary Kay’s independent sales force also began receiving emails generated from Ms. LaMarr’s website.

21. Upon information and belief and within two years from the date of her termination of her NSD Agreement. Ms. LaMarr has used her website to directly or indirectly solicit or recruit Mary Kay IBCs to sell products or services other than t hose sold by Mary Kay.

22. Upon information and belief, she has further used names, mailing lists, and other non-public business information which she obtained during her association with Mary Kay to recruit or promote the sale of her own company, Driven, Inc.

23. Finally, upon information and belief, Ms. LaMarr has sought, directly or indirectly, financial benefit or other compensation based on or associated with her solicitation, recruitment, enrollment or association by employment persons she knows or has reason to believe are under contract as members of Mary Kay’s independent sales force. Her activities and conduct constitute violations of her NSD Agreement.


28. [snip] As described above, Ms. LaMarr repeatedly ignored the restrictions on the use of Mary Kay’s Marks and trade name during the course of her relationship with Mary Kay.

29. Defendants have continued to use Mary Kay’s Marks and trade name n Ms. Lamarr’s website and in her original creative works without authorization or consent from Mary Kay after she terminated her NSD Agreement. Defendants’ unlawful and unauthorized use of the trademarks and name after her termination harms not only Mary Kay, but also Mary Kay independent sales force members and consumers who are confused or deceived into purchasing products through her website believing they are purchasing products from an authorized Mary Kay Independent Beauty Consultant.


30. Defendants’ unauthorized use of Mary Kay’s trademarks and name has also confused or is likely to confuse both Mary Kay IBCs and consumers as to the affiliation, connection, or association of Defendants with Mary Kay, as well as to the origin sponsorship, or approval of Defendants’ products, services, and commercial activities by Mary Kay.


31. Defendants’ misconduct has harmed and continues to harm Mary Kay, its IBCs, and consumers.

Isn’t it interesting that while Allison was raking in money for Mary Kay, they were willing to overlook her violations of the NSD agreement? It was only after she left MK and started recruiting for Bellamora that Mary Kay had a problem with those violations.

What does Mary Kay Cosmetics want from Allison and James LaMarr and their company Driven? A permanent injunction prohibiting Allison and Driven from engaging in these kinds of activities in the future, triple damages for Allison’s activities, an accounting of the sales resulting from Allison’s activities, and that the profit of those activities be turned over the Mary Kay.

What is Allison’s response? She has generally denied every allegation, and affirmatively said that since Mary Kay allowed her to do these things while she was an NSD, they waived their claims:

“… Defendants plead waiver as to Mary Kay’s complaints and causes of action arising from or related to Ms. LaMarr’s and Driven’s actions while Ms. LaMarr was an independent national sales director. Mary Kay had full knowledge of Defendants’ actions and knowingly and intentionally waived any claims that allegedly arise from those actions.”

It is unclear whether Allison is saying that Mary Kay shouldn’t be able to sue her at all for these things, or whether they can’t sue her for the stuff that happened while she was an NSD, but everything after is fair game.

In an amended answer, LaMarr adds the defense that Driven Inc. was not under any written or oral contract with Mary Kay, and therefore it cannot be liable for breach of contract.

Curiously, almost all of the activity on Allison LaMarr’s Facebook page has been deleted between August and December, the time during which Mary Kay was suing her, attempting to serve her with the lawsuit, and receiving her denial.

Both Mary Kay and Allison LaMarr disgust me. There is no honor among thieves. Both Mary Kay and Allison LaMarr are users of people…. use people as long as they fit your agenda (and help you make money), and when they no longer do, sue them.

Is it possible for both sides to lose? Mary Kay and Allison LaMarr are both scum of the earth, so it would please me to no end if they could both lose this lawsuit. At least we can take comfort in knowing that both parties will pay attorneys handsomely to fight this out in court.

Mary Kay is currently trying to depose Bellamora for this case, which means they are seeking documentation and information on the following topics:

  • The relationship with Allison and reasons for termination
  • Agreements with Allison and reasons for termination
  • Services provided by Allison and reasons for termination
  • Any creative works created by Allison, including databases and promotional materials
  • Marketing plans or sales strategies involving Allison
  • Contents and source of any database that includes any Mary Kay member
  • Any relationship between Bellamora and any Mary Kay member

Grab some popcorn and sit back and watch. This should be an interesting fight.

Tomorrow we’ll talk about the rest of the lawsuits Mary Kay has launched!



  1. I knew it. I thought there was no way that MK was going to let her go to another MLM that quickly without finding a way to sue her. These lawsuits are amazing. When does it go to trial?

    • I wouldn’t be surprised if it takes a year or two to get to trial. They have barely begun the fight, and its been 8 months.

  2. She’s screwed. Now I kinda wonder if her affiliation with Bellamora was what sunk them too? Imagine trying to get a new start up off the ground, and finding out that you are in the crosshairs of a lawsuit because your corporate trainer is unethical.

    • That is what I thought happened. I had thought that MK sent her a letter that said “stop”, then the Bellamora people were like…”Ohhhh so scared” and kept do what what they were doing. Then she got another letter that was more firmly written and at some point they said she had to get out to save the rest of the company. When she left it all fell apart quickly, which made her think she it was all her. So she tried again and then now she is finding out that life isn’t as easy now.

  3. Oh dear Allison– you really thought MK wouldn’t care what you did after you “resigned? ” I agree with Raisin– she’s screwed. MK has way more money than she does, and it doesn’t appear she is bringing in any sort of reliable income. Will be interesting to see how this turns out. (Um, Allison? MK Corp+ Tarrant County = You don’t have a chance.)

    • I agree, but I agree with Tracy’s original point that both sides could lose. Other than Allison using non-public info, their requirements are ridiculous (in the first place). Especially if the MK documents, the MK name aside, are original things Allison wrote.

      I don’t support Allison, at all, but this is also further proof that Mary Kay is absolutely horrible.

  4. Oh my …. “Defendants plead waiver as to Mary Kay’s complaints and causes of action arising from or related to Ms. LaMarr’s and Driven’s actions while Ms. LaMarr was an independent national sales director. Mary Kay had full knowledge of Defendants’ actions and knowingly and intentionally waived any claims that allegedly arise from those actions.”

    Rules that are unenforced become unenforceable.

    Kinda like a lease … if the lease says “no pets” and the landlord ignores your pet for a long time, waves hi to you as you walk in and out with yout pet for several years … landlord can’t suffenly decide to enforce that no pets clause.

    • Yeah, except I think this will be a hard argument for Allison to win. Mary Kay apparently has documentation showing that they repeatedly tried to get her to comply with their rules. I suspect that the result of their compliance efforts was her quitting. They told her to stop or else, so she finally just quit when she realized that they were going to terminate her if she didn’t stop. Just my theory, of course. I will eagerly await the documentation.

  5. wow- this will be interesting to watch. Allison is playing with the big boys now, and unfortunately, she’s going to get squashed. This will get ugly, I’m sure.

  6. Okay, I’ve got something thought-provoking to add. Check this out:

    1. The Lamarr lawsuit came into play August 2011.

    2. Darn near most of the material on Lamarr’s FB page between August 2011 and December 2011 got scrubbed.

    Do you remember what major FB issue involving Lamarr was going on during that time period?

    Do the words “$4,000 Transformation Summit” ring a bell or seven?

    Scheduled to go down October 7-9 2011, the dates for this heavily-hyped, overpriced event came and went. When Lamarr was asked to provide pictures and updates regarding said summit, readers were were met with silence until October 29, 2011, when Lamarr posted this:

    “Y’all are too funny with your requests for pics from the Transformation Summit!! Some things must be kept secret for participants only…and some things will be shared all in due time. But don’t worry…you’ll hear PLENTY of interesting news from our camp very soon. ;)”

    Of course, nothing was ever shared. And when readers voiced their anger at Lamarr’s blow-offs and failure to pony up answers to simple questions, Lamarr replied with this:

    “For those of you who choose to wait for my update, I believe you will fully understand why I’m choosing certain timing. For those who wish to make assumptions in the meantime, that’s OK, too. The choice to remain a part of our community here is up to you.”

    Once again, no updates never came. But I do believe I’m seeing why “certain timing” may have been such an important factor to Lamarr.

    • Agreed, Tracy. As I’m reading this article, I’m almost giddy and wondering who’s side I’m on. Ultimately, I think MK & Ali are scum of the earth so I guess I’ll be happy just knowing the pain and suffering both sides will be going through. I may hate Ali more though just ’cause she’s a total moron. Maybe I’m on team MK. UGH….This is going to be a blast to watch!

  7. Allison has the potential to totally ruin mk corp… so even though I dislike her lack of honor etc, I think if she brings up anyting about the fact that nobody makes money (apx 2%) , new product changes, etc it could hurt mk to be exposed like that.

    • Between her, and Amy Dunlap’s statements, I think you’re on to something. When people sitting at the top aren’t getting anywhere…

    • None of that is going to be brought up in court. For the purposes of this contract dispute, it doesn’t matter. On the other hand, a good, clever attorney might be able to make stick the claim that Mary Kay is estopped (barred) from pursuing some claims because MK let it go on while LaMarr was an NSD.

      My prediction is that this thing will settle out of court, Allison LaMarr will get the short end of the stick (and we will see her disappear even more, maybe even from Seacret), and we won’t know what the terms are.

  8. Makes me wonder if this was a reason why she bounced from Seacrest as a member of their executive team? Or did they let her go because they too were at risk?

  9. I tried to pull up the link that had Dunbar’s NSD agreement and it didn’t come up. So I have no way of knowing if it has this clause.

    Many contracts have a provision (usually called Waiver of Violation or something to that effect) that states if a party fails to object to or take action against a violation of the agreement by the other party, that shall not preclude them from doing so in the future. Meaning that even if they ignored it before, they still have the right to do something about it later.

    Again, I couldn’t see the NSD Agreement so don’t know if there’s anything like this in it or not.

  10. Mary Kay is an international corporate behemoth with some $3 billion in annual sales.

    In comparison, Allison LaMarr and Amy Dunlap are a pair of fleas. Or so it seems.

    What is it about these two (and others like them) that Mary Kay Corporate finds so threatening? Is it simply spite for being bitten by the fleas? Is it poisonous jellyfish-tentacled greed that says no one is allowed to exploit Mary Kay “resources” except Mary Kay? Or does the big bad corporate giant really fear that, if they don’t put the stopper into this bathtub drain, their entire company will pour down the sewer?

    • international corporate behemoth with some $3 billion in annual sales That’s really not very large … L’Oreal spends more than that on research.

      does the big bad corporate giant really fear that, if they don’t put the stopper into this bathtub drain, their entire company will pour down the sewer I think so.

      And it’s popping leaks all over the place.

    • I have to wonder if MKC isn’t pouting, really. Both of these women made the company how much money? Then they up and left. Well, we all knew Alli’s unit was crashing and burning, MKC knew as well. The materials Allison was doing was probably bring in $$ for MKC as well, so sure, they let her do it until that was all she was doing when her unit vanished, so they tried to get her to stop. That’s when she pulled the plug, and I am sure MKC is stamping their feet because she took off on her own, when everyone knows she was using MKC as a vehicle to her own success…using their logos, tools and people. They are probably pissed off because their golden girl turned out to be a flop.

  11. Well, remember what they told us…Doing Mary Kay is like trying to fill the bathtub with the drain open. Guess that’s true for Corpse as well! LOL.

  12. If she would only come clean about MLM and draw attention to this lawsuit MK would run for the hills

  13. It is interesting that Allison seems “retired” because Mary Kay was trying to hold it to the agreement she signed NSD?
    I’d love to see a long, drawn trial, nasty live on mlm

  14. It’s amazing that when you ask a MK cons. about this whole mess, they act like they have no idea who Allison is. ‘They’ve never heard of her.’

    Because women come and go so fast in MK (and every other mlm) it’s very possible they don’t know about her.

    And the $3 bil. in sales figure? I’m not buyin’ it (no pun intended) – corporations make money from as many avenues as possible. You can say ‘sales’ all you want, but ‘sales’ from what? land? stocks?

    • Trigger … if you take the latest reported income, which is about 2.5 billion, and divide it by the number of consultants, you come up with a little over $1000 per consultant.

      That’s believable, it meshes with the averages for many units, and it shows that the only way they can make more money is to recruit and frontload.

  15. Hi, LazyGardens;

    Have you noticed the ‘extreme’ recruiting push ALL mlms are engaged in these days? It’s sickening.

    • Yes … their problem is that they are running out of sales.

      The Internet initially seemed like a MLMer’s dream … unlimited access to new recruits all over the country, not just the ones you could meet face to face. Low marketing costs, high sales … drool! And briefly, it worked.

      But it also enabled a few things that have damaged MLMs:

      1 – Sites like Pink Truth that are systematically exposing the facts about the lack of success, and examining the revolving door of the top MLMers as they move from scam to scam.
      2 – Sites like Facebook, where it becomes painfully obvious how many desperate consultants are already out there, pleading for customers and offering huge discounts.
      3 – Sites like eBay, full of the unsalable crap from all kinds of MLMs making it hard for reps to get sales.

      It has also sped up the “ramp time” for any new MLM because of the ease of spreading the word and getting people eager to “get in on the ground floor”. They can’t start slow. If they aren’t ready to go from 0 to blazing in a couple of months, they will fail like Bellamora. That takes some serious cash up front, because the web sites and samples have to be paid for.

  16. Interesting how everything MK has lined out could be said of most NSDs, at least any of those trying to make a dime outside of pushing cosmetics and recruiting.

  17. Were I Allison, I would so use this against them. The truth! ” while Allison was raking in money for Mary Kay, they were willing to overlook her violations of the NSD agreement? It was only after she left MK and started recruiting for Bellamora that Mary Kay had a problem with those violations.” You CAN’T have it all, MK!

  18. I would think serious “entrepreneurs” like Allison and her ex would have taken her NSD contract to an attorney before embarking on anything. If MK were trying to get her to comply while she was still with them, what made her think she’d be safe after the fact? Who doesn’t know that corporations aren’t cut-throat when it comes to business?

  19. I really love this website! There is a Pink Oppurtunities building in Salisbury,Maryland were two directors have something going on every night of the week. I wish I could put a HUGE Billboard in front of that building that sais “Pink” for anyone considering walking into that building to become a consultant. They got my sister in law three months ago and she became a consultant and I told her about this website and she quit.but is left with a lot of inventory and heartache. Is it legal for these woman to have opened up this pink Oppurtunities building in search of recruiting consultants??someone please respond

    • Ginger n… have your sister-in-law read the “RETURNING INVENTORY” tab at the top of the page

      She should be able to return her products and get 90% of her money back from mary Kay.

    • It would be a hoot to take some bright chalk and write in large letters all up and down the sidewalk in front of the facility. Then sit across the street in your car and watch the fun.

  20. First of all, the juxtaposition of the photos at the top is HYSTERICAL. I feel for Allison…but I did leave MK after 1 short year, so perhaps I’m less resentful than some! And, one thing I find incredible is that a company who claims to “Enrich Women’s Lives” is so litigious.

  21. I never really liked this website because I was so faithful to Mary Kay. I lied to myself over and over about it because I loved my friends and my Sales Directors. I never really made any money until my 6th year in it because that was the last year I actually worked it the way you were supposed to. Even doing that, Gold Medaling, Silver and Bronze medaling 3 times didn’t make me the kind of money I needed it to. You always put every dime you make back into it and then some. We believe our lies and it really eats away at us. We put on a proud smile and lie to everyone. How screwed up. I still love my confused MK girlfriends and I want to tell them what I really feel but I know that they won’t listen and will shut me out. I love Allison LaMarr, she was my driving force and yes, she made a few bad decisions along the way, we all do. The difference is that she was an NSD and highly visible. I think that It learning what I did in Mary Kay, it really isn’t the Mary Kay way to sue an NSD that did what she did and is still doing for the Company. What about all the money she made and is still continuing to make for Mary Kay. Again, she made some poor choices but she is human and Mary Kay needs to look at the damage it is doing to their reputation as well. I didn’t know about Amy Dunlap, I am going to read about that next. She was another of my favorites, so funny. Mary Kay was the best and worst thing that ever happened to me.

    • It really doesn’t matter how much money Allison made for MK. She signed a contract, and she violated it. For that she should have to pay. Both MK and Allison are predators of the worst kind. It’s sad that one side has to win, because they both suck. But Allison is in the wrong.

    • I totally agree Barbara. I admire Allison and still follow her closely. As I said, I had no experience with her in MK, as she had already retired after I joined. I am just glad I have completely severed ties with the Company. Burn your bridges!, right?! Also, I imagine we are not hearing the whole story from LaMarr about MK Corp.’s part in all this. She is far too classy to bash them publicly.

  22. If she was selling HER Cd’s and selling tickets to consultants for HER events she was in breach of her contract PERIOD and any other company would have sued her too. She knew what she was doing was unethical.

    • Not true… All companies have CD’s from their “top” people and their “top” people to sell event tickets. Unfortunately, it’s a compensation plan that the field isn’t invited to participate in…

  23. NSD Pamela Shaw should be feeling very, VERY concerned right about now, with her “It’s My Now” fitness endeavor being directly linked to the Beachbody MLM. I hope that MK Legal (having already been notified) looks at these cases and deals with Shaw just like they did LaMarr and Dunlap.

    I asked Shaw on her FB page if It’s My Now and Beachbody were connected. An initial response told me they simply like the Beachbody workouts. Later the comment (and its response) got scrubbed. Oh yeah, and I got blocked.

    I’m thinking NSD Shaw likes a LOT more about Beachbody that just the workouts.

  24. Does anyone know where Allison is now? I did, actually, think she did a good job training on the new Consultant mindset and her postcard campaign to get them off to a strong start, but I’m not surprised she was made an example by MKI of how fierce they’re willing to be to right a wrong (in this case charging us hundreds of dollars to go to her Bootcamps.)

    • She divorced and married one of the wealthy founders of some “dead sea salt” company … she pops occasionally in my FB feed with annoying platitudes.

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