This week’s official release of Harper’s Magazine story “The Pink Pyramid Scheme: How Mary Kay Cosmetics Preys on Desperate Housewives,” along with the NPR’s On Point with Tom Ashbrook episode entitled Investigating Mary Kay has brought out the haters.
I generally don’t allow Pink Truth haters and trolls to comment here. The reason is simple: Mary Kay doesn’t allow alternative (“negative”) viewpoints on its site or FaceBook page, so we don’t allow opposing viewpoints on Pink Truth. When Mary Kay changes their policy, we will consider changing ours. Those who want to bash Pink Truth and its mission have plenty of “positive Mary Kay” sites on which they can share their opinion, so we don’t need to give them a platform here.
Nonetheless, I have been amused by some of the comments here and on other sites, so I am going to share a few with you.
First and foremost, we must review the fine comments of one Pamela Waldrop Shaw. These comments were made on the page featuring a podcast of the Investigating Mary Kay radio segment. The commenter holding herself out as Pam Shaw, top-ranking national sales director with Mary Kay, posted the following:
I was most disappointed to hear about the broadcast yesterday where you gave voice to such false and misleading information regarding Mary Kay Inc. I grew up on your station as my parents are lifetime, money donating patrons. You might want to do a little research before you slander and falsely accuse any company where many people would be affected by the tone and accuracy or lack thereof your broadcast.
The terms “Multi-level and Pyramid” don’t even apply to Mary Kay. We are a part of the Direct Selling Industry, but we have a duel-marketing plan. (Do your research. The differences are vast). The impressive awards and recognition for the fairness of our marketing plan has a long list of qualified endorsements as we enter our 50th year in 2013.
Women who open their Independent business with Mary Kay have the OPTION of starting with just their Starter Kit for @ $100 + tax (valued at over $350 with full size product + sales aids) or they can add inventory from $200 wholesale up to fit their business goals. You wouldn’t shop at a grocery or department store who had nothing to purchase right then and there, so in the interest of great customer service, many of our Sales Force DO CHOOSE to start with and carry inventory so as to provide superb customer service.
The Company offers a 90% repurchase for Consultants who choose to terminate their relationship and SELL back their inventory. This product the company crushes and absorbs the loss. NO other business risk provides that safety net of support.
Mary Kay the marketing plan, the product and the opportunity ‘work’. Sadly, there are those who ‘blame’ their lack of results on ANYTHING other than the fact they didn’t show up for education, remain accountable with their Sales Director for quality coaching, gave hap-hazard efforts or simply never went to work.
I’m a former High School English and Dance teacher. Since I left, does that give me a voice to slam all public education? Do you know other professionals who have left jobs or shut down small/large businesses? Does that mean the Company was rotten? I have a 26 year tenure with this amazing Company.
As a widow of 5 years, the success from Mary Kay has provided my family with great flexibility to grieve and parent; to put my Faith first, my Family second and my Career third; to stay in our home. The generous commissions available, bonuses, the sale of the product (buy it for $1 and sell it for $2), the women-helping-women philosophies have been a blessing beyond description.
That you would give air time to disgruntled people with short tenure, low knowledge and little experience; that you would assume ‘their’ representation of our Company is valid–is VERY unprofessional of you and very disappointing to me. I look forward to a public apology.
Sincerely,Pamela Waldrop Shaw
Sr. National Sales Director, MKI
I can’t prove whether this was truly written by Pam Shaw, but my instincts say that it was. I find it interesting that she makes a blanket statement that “false and misleading information” was presented about Mary Kay, but fails to specify even ONE fact that was presented falsely.
The truth is that Virginia Sole-Smith was right on point with everything she said. I could not have done a better job than she did on the radio program. Major kudos go out to her for all of her efforts to expose the dark side of Mary Kay.
What does Virginia have to gain by painting a false picture of Mary Kay? She was hired to do an investigative piece, and she did exactly that. I doubt that her pay was dependent on a particular outcome or point of view. In spite of her dim view of Mary Kay that was the result of her personal experience in researching this story, she treated MK Inc. very fairly in her piece.
On the other hand. Ms. Pamela Shaw – – former high school English teacher with atrocious grammar – – has a vested interest in painting Mary Kay in a positive light. Her income depends on it. From July 1, 2011 through April 30, 2102, Ms. Shaw was paid over $242,000 in commissions by Mary Kay . That’s more than $24,000 per month commission income (prior to the payment of any business expenses.) I estimate that beauty consultants had to purchase more than $4 million of products at wholesale prices during those 10 months in order for Shaw to be paid that money. (And when you consider that there are 40,000 to 50,000 Mary Kay items being auctioned on eBay at any given time, you can bet that little of that $4 million in products actually was sold to retail customers.)
From an anonymous male:
Ive got an idea…You all stop blaming the loss of money on MK and get off your butt and work it for 8 hours a day like a normal job and see what happens. Im a guy that was forwarded this email because someone thought i would agree with if but the fact of the matter is that its not a get rich quick scam and it does take a lot of work. If your not a people person or good in front of crowds or salesie then what would make you think this is for you? I know quite a bit about the company and here is my experience from the past 10 years. I have never seen any woman work the company as intended any not sussed. I would suggest that you stop picking on the women that are more motivated than you.
From Mary Kay sales director Karla Reno, formerly known as Karla Sides, who thought she was posting anonymously. Karla is an old “friend” of Pink Truth, and is a typical Mary Kay failure. She was an Executive Senior sales director in 2005, but has been demoted all the way down to Senior sales director.
Tracy– you’re stil a loser asshole and I’m still making money in Mk after 20 years! Yay!
What’s the Pink Truth about Karla Reno? She hasn’t been listed in Applause magazine in the last six years, and she works two jobs in addition to Mary Kay. AND Karla shills for another multi-level marketing company in addition to Mary Kay. Sounds like her bee-lief and success are both a little lacking.
Kelly Walston wants us to know:
Are you kidding? Are you really so incensed that you would need to put some money into a business to make money. $3K is really not a lot to invest in a business. I did and sold 1800 my first month. Also, the company will buy back your inventory at 90% if you change your mind. So what’s your beef? If there was no retail market for the product, the consultants would be returning their inventory in the following months and these NSD’s would implode. That doesn’t happen because YES, there is a market for skin care and cosmetics and YES Mary Kay is a fantastic product!
Sorry Kelly, but that’s not exactly how it works. There is tremendous pressure to NOT return products, along with misinformation about the return process, which means a very small number of women ever return their things. And Mary Kay is not a business.
Barbara Ritchey tells us:
If you were any sort of a truthful person or group you’d put your real names. You are all bitter people who were too lazy to make it work. QUIT POLLUTING THE WEB WITH YOUR NEGATIVE PROPAGANDA.
From the alleged child of a Mary Kay nsd:
You wanna know why the success rate for Mary Kay isn’t so high? It’s because although this company is about making your own personal business, it’s mainly about building leaders while building youre own character. People think they can become rich just by selling products themselves when really its about building a team.
My mom is an NSD and she started out where everyone else does. She came into the country not knowing the English language, she was as shy as it gets. But she didn’t succeed by doing it herself, she made it by developing 10 first line she can trust and as time went by she developed into one of the best leaders this company has. Not only that but she thanks them every chance she gets and always assures everyone that she would not be In The position she is if it weren’t for her people.
Bottom line is, yes the company tells you that it is YOUR business but you will also get no where if u try to do it alone without building anyone else up. That’s the problem with the 90 percent of you that go on here to blow off steam after failing.
I guess we have been told off!!!