Mary Kay Squares Contest

Everything in Mary Kay is centered around a contest. There is so little profit (usually none!) to be made, that you have to get consultants ordering products somehow. Who is going to keep selling products at no profit? But if you offer prizes and incentives, they’ll likely keep spinning around that hamster wheel a little while longer.

This one is the “Squares Contest.” It looks like a calendar, with 35 different activities that can help earn you prizes. It’s not new. All that changes is the activity that you’re incentivizing or the month it applies to.

There are rules! You have to be “active” in order to get a prize. So don’t even think that selling the hundreds or thousands of dollars of inventory you already have on your shelf will count. You must have ordered in the last three months, or no prizes for you!

You get squares for things like: printing the squares contest sheet, registering for seminar, submitting your weekly accomplishment sheet, ORDERING, and stocking up on skin care products. 4 squares relate to ordering. 4 squares relate to recruiting. There are a bunch that relate to selling, but…. Think about selling 6 items a week. We’re essentially incentivizing selling $100 per week, which might give the consultants $25 to $40 of profit, if she sells at full price. Sad.


  1. Lazy Gardens

    That looks like something that would be used to track and motivates chores for a child, or a summer reading challenge for chapter books.

    All this busy work is just to distract you from the time and money that is being wasted.

  2. Nancie

    I love this note: “*You may receive credit for either 3-5 items sold or 6+ items sold, but not both.”

    Once again, proof that MK isn’t about selling the product.

    1. MLM Radar

      Compare the selling squares to the ordering squares. I notice you can get credit for both ordering squares: order $450 wholesale and order $1,400 wholesale. (Those will, of course, enable your Director to get “production” bonuses.)

      So you have 5 squares where you get credit for 6+ items, for a total of 30 items. At wholesale price of $10 to $15 per item that is $300 to $450. Or less, if one or more of those weeks you only sell 3 to 5 items.

      Maximizing the selling squares will only get you to the lower of the two ordering squares. Where are you going to get the cash to make the $1,400 wholesale order and nab that other square? Clearly, selling enough to make the $1,400 order doesn’t matter.

      Answer: MK doesn’t really care where the cash comes from. Find a way or make a way. Just do it.

  3. Jay

    MK University sounds like a really scary concept. Has anyone here been to it/knows what it entails? Other than parting with money one doesn’t really have to spend?

    1. TRACY

      Oh this is where they pretend to be about real education. They sometimes call it the MK MBA too. Just rah rah classes that allegedly teach you about business, but in reality are just pushing you to recruit more so you can move up and theoretically make a living.

      1. navyhawk

        Yep Tracy is right. My first MKU I was super pumped. Thinking I would learn about products (what was in them, how they worked, best for certain skin needs). After all, I had no previous knowledge of skin care. I also thought we would be learning make-up techniques and on trend tips and tricks.

        However, it was all about recruiting and front-loading, and motivation (aka brain washing). I did my first and my last. I was so disappointed. I think that is when my disillusionment started.

  4. Tammy Daniel

    I am so disillusioned and middle right now. Last night an NSD called m3 and told me all about Mary Kay being taught at Harvard- how I would get 50% profit, how I could earn a car if I sold enough- all lies!!

    1. BestDecision

      That’s not true. You can’t earn a car on your sales alone. It requires recruiting and doesn’t require any sales on your part. And, as Tracy points out, it was a case study by ONE group of students. Just because someone chooses it doesn’t mean it’s a compliment. Any MBA student or grad can tell you all kinds of legit AND struggling businesses are selected, but it’s NOT Harvard doing the selecting.

      You’ve got red flags all around you, so get out now.

      1. Autumn

        My sister was a Harvard MBA student, she had a bunch of MK recruiting material and might have been thinking about it, but my father put the kybosh on that. This was the early 1980s, Strange, she now denies it EVER happened.

    2. Lazy Gardens

      “told me all about Mary Kay being taught at Harvard-

      You know what else is taught at Harvard? Bubonic Plague, the Enron scandal, Pol Pot, and a bunch of other disasters.

      It’s not always a good thing to have a class about your company or politics.

    3. Lily

      One of my management classes in college had a couple of MK examples, couching it in glowing terms to make it fit into the “good management styles” section; stressing everything from the incentives to the “dedication to helping women”. It was obviously bought and paid for, and it was seriously jarring in an otherwise fairly decent book.

  5. MK Mess

    I am always told to buy more. That’s the solution to everything in MK.

    Did you all hear how I got recruited at Sephora? I thought she was a legit employee. I’ll have to tell you all about it one day. SNEAKY BITCH.

  6. Leah

    Wait so, youre upset that in order for you to recieve a prize you have to actually place an order to the company? If you have inventory why would you just sell it and not replenish it? That totally defeats the purpose. Youre not spending your own money as long as you’re doing it right. 40 percent for you, 10 percent supplies and such, 50 to restock your shelf. I dont get why thats a bad thing. And since thats the only way the company can keep track of what youre doing, you could lie and just say you sold $100 and how would you prove it??

    1. TRACY

      No Leah, we’re upset because MK encourages ordering products regardless of sales. “Doing it right” is irrelevant with MK because the pressure is there to ORDER ORDER ORDER even if you don’t need products.

    2. BestDecision

      Did you miss the part where ordering $1400 gets the same weight as visiting a unit’s Facebook page? You clearly aren’t a Director or you’d understand how desperate people are for recognition that they buy their way into a prize. It’s sickening, and it’s the only thing keeping the company afloat.

      By the way, how many of these new 3D sets have you sold? And how many customers are thrilled to see their moisturizer is now only 1.7oz?

      1. MLM Radar

        Only 1.7 ounces of moisturizer? For how much money????

        As far as I’m concerned, 1.7 ounces is sample size. Small sample size.

        The name brand moisturizer I bought from the samples and travel supplies rack at Target had almost twice that much in the bottle. And yes, it worked very nicely during my airplane trip, thank you very much for asking.

        1. BestDecision

          The new moisturizers are $32. That’s $18.82/oz, and the sales force has to carry 6 versions of them based on skin types and SPF/non-SPF formulas. Ludicrous!

    3. Char


      I want to give you some credit for reading Pinktruth. Even though you are only 20, you are far wiser than many older active MK recruits.

      Keep in mind, the ladies here don’t want to make any money off you, unlike your upline. I hope you will continue asking questions so you’ll learn the whole truth. It is clear by some of your posts that you are NOT being told the whole story. Typical of MLMers.

      No one here is jealous of consultants. The posters either feel sorry for them or think they are outright scammers.

      I hope you take the time to read every single article on this site. I’d hate to see your young mind lured deeper into this cult.

      1. TRACY

        You know, that’s a good point Char. We have nothing to gain by giving Leah information on this site. It is good that she’s at least reading here, because it indicates that she’s willing to listen (at least a little). We end up getting pretty passionate here, and I hope she keeps reading in spite of that.

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