DIQ Deception

This story was submitted by a reader of Pink Truth. If you think the part of the story about cheating is unusual, think again. Mary Kay supporters will tell you the cheaters are few and far between, and they weren’t following the Mary Kay Way. Wrong! Cheating is the rule, not the exception. I have yet to find a sales director who made it to that position without signing up friends or family who didn’t really want to be a part of Mary Kay. They all do it so they can move up the pyramid.

I thought perhaps now is the best time to tell my story as I am still sorting out the end of my MK world. I won’t lie. I have moments where I still think about being an awesome Director, and through being a good, honest person, winning that caddy, the jewelry, the huge checks. I still find myself checking out the star consultant catalog thinking, well, maybe… I even have to admit, I am curious what next years Court jewelry will be.

It started for me years ago.. I joined the unit of a woman that many adore. She’s been a million dollar sales director multiple times in her over 20 years. But those of us in her unit found out really quickly how just absolutely selfish she is. My inventory call came pretty fast, right behind the agreement where I was told NOTHING about inventory. I didn’t buy any.

But I found myself soon wanting the praise and adoration. I was dishonest, I admit it. I wanted to be liked, and move up fast, and have people notice me. So I signed up my friends and bought their starter kits and purchased their $200 activating order. I sold it all on eBay. I even stretched on eBay to make Star Consultant! LOL!

The night I was finally fed up was the last day of seminar when I got about 50 emails telling me each hour where we were in wholesale, and could we stretch, just for the team, you need it don’t you, you want to support us, you want me to walk on stage, you want me to get that trip, you want me, me, me, to get all that cash? So I faded.

Then I came back thinking she won’t ruin my business! I will just do it without her. But that doesn’t happen so easily, so I faded again.

Then I signed up again years later down the road with someone new, young, and vivacious! She was hot to trot, and the entire seminar knew it. As I went through MK again I became more and more disillusioned. I wasn’t built to sell makeup. Some people are and they love it. I don’t. I feel that I am built for something different. I was buying stuff just to make goals, I was recruiting ghosts, and those who weren’t ghosts weren’t working.

It all started to dawn on me when my best and brightest recruit wouldn’t quit buying inventory and I just let her keep buying, knowing full well that it was helping my DIQ and car totals, but she wasn’t selling one bit of it. She bought around $8,000 wholesale and I was letting her. And as she hit her one year mark all I did was pray that she didn’t sell back because God forbid she did, I was going to be cut out from that much commission. How terrible, I valued her money over her friendship. I did it with all my recruits who purchased big.

The moment it really hit me was personally watching reports and firsthand stories coming across in our area where it was coming to light all the corruption among the people who want to be just like my director.

I was nearing the end of MK career when it came to light a director was paying for her own DIQ’s recruits (all of them at $600 a pop). Which effectively bought this person’s way to the Court of Sharing. Funny though – the person made Court of Sales half way through the year, but never had another single qualified recruit all year, and only ONE of those recruits was over $600 in wholesale. She kept doing this with more and more directors, and in the end I am sure her Court of Excellence matches her Court of Credit Card Debt. Shortly after this I just checked out mentally watching these people ruin themselves for clapping, and then ruin others to get ahead.

Mind you this isn’t the only case. Plenty of them have done the same, plenty are paying for their cars, purchased their court of sales, or bought their Court of Sharing at $600 a pop. But the one thing I can tell you from what I know – they are all paying the price for their inequities.

All that wrong that just gets me. I can believe MK was once a company where they valued your sales and not your inventory. They valued you truly wanting to pass on a good opportunity for the right reasons, and not to make some Court. I can’t possibly believe MK herself is looking down thinking, WOW, I’m so happy I put all these women into debt!

So what happened? Mary Kay died. I think the true transformation of greed in these directors happened when a male took over her company and shoved everything but the Go Give Spirit into this company. I’m not saying MK is perfect, but you have to admit, these problems weren’t around to this degree before about 2000 while MK was still running the show. It was there, but she at least could make you lather it in love and friendship and you felt forced to be good.

I don’t think sales is bad. Heck, if you think of it, franchises are pyramid schemes. You have to pay someone who pays someone who pays someone. It’s the nature of business to some degree when you are in a franchise type business model. But MK stopped believing in building women, having a product that was better than the competition, letting women truly run their own business, and started pushing money, products that don’t deliver expecting the name will sell it, and tightened up on women to the point that legal is suffocating them.

What happened to meetings in your living room? Products that were quality? Directors that didn’t care if you bought one thing wholesale, they enjoyed your company? Nationals who talked more about how they hope they helped you, not about their commissions checks and diamonds? What happened to girls night out being about spending time with nice women, and not those who did big wholesale? And what happened to MK being part time around my schedule, and you not mocking me for having a job I love and not wanting to leave it for MK?

So until I can enjoy MK for what it was intended to be, an opportunity to have a little something for myself where women didn’t judge me based on my wholesale order or recruiting totals, then count me out. I’m sure selling back my MK counts me out anyhow. I’d rather watch women who brag more about their money than their good friends crash and burn.

And for you that think you’re too hot to trot reading this, I don’t care how much money you have or what jewelry you wear. Show me a job that really means something. That stay at home mom you make fun of is giving constant love to her kids. That job I took over your lipstick is providing national security to you here at home and needed information to the troops overseas. That job that many took after MK is paying off the debt you helped them build and giving them medical care they didn’t have while you filled their heads up with air.

Go ahead and compare your houses with each other, while I compare how good I feel about myself and my job and my contribution to the US, while you drown your offspring and consultants in more debt.

And for those of you who aren’t NSDs laughing at us here on PT who have JOBS – at least we have medical, dental, retirement, 401K matching, vacation and sick time. When I add up everything my company gives me and what I earn for work (the 401K matching, the medical, the dental, the social security and medicare matching that employers are required to do, and retirement contributions they make to my retirement account), I make over $11,000 per month at my worst. Tons of NSDs make less than $10,000 per month and therefore aren’t listed in Applause.

So you can keep your HIGHEST CHECK IN ONE MONTH kudos and your I make six figures bull. Because I do, too.


  1. raisinberry

    There are two problems that are equally weighted in my mind, regarding this account.

    Mary Kay could do NONE of this if women who were recruited in, were told the truth, and those women, posessed a truthful core or self awareness in their being. In other words, the deceptive nature of Mary Kay’s recruiting schpeel and expectations for career path players, exploits the deceptive nature and neediness of many humans.

    Where it weighs more negatively is on the MK side, however, because one simple change would stop the abuses. Just one. Accountability.

    All Mary Kay Inc would have to do is require a weekly log-in of sales that week. Simple. Call your Director every Saturday, or text her your totals, like every other retail sales outlet in the world. Every retail sales outlet EXCEPT mlm product based pyramids!

    And why? Because the ENTIRE OPERATION crashes and burns at just one month’s worth of data. The gig is up. The immense debt worldwide is known, the lack of real sales is apparent, and the lies are fully exposed.

    Mary Kay is guilty of a global deception, hiding real sales activity in favor of exaggerated claims and false statements about earnings at higher levels, and what one must do to achieve said claims. In this, they corrupt their more vulnerable and trusting consultants, appealing to a neediness that they exploited and then FOSTERED, by dangling benchmarks, recognition, cars, trips, prizes, acceptance, qualifiers to “arrive” at some acknowledged achievement that was as empty as vapor (and worse, required more deception to maintain). Mary Kay is a global con job and the fact they could, but will not, track sales, and reveal the true “opportunity”, is all the proof that one needs.

  2. Lily in NYC

    I was with you until you wrote that franchises are similar to MLM schemes. NO THEY ARE NOT. It’s not about “paying someone who pays someone else under them”. NO. MLMs are about recruiting and not selling the actual product. Franchises are business trying to sell an actual product; they will stay in business as long as they keep selling. It would only be similar if someone who bought a franchise couldn’t stay in business unless they found multiple people to buy franchises under them. That’s not how it works. Seems like you still could use a bit of education on this subject.

  3. Char

    Congratulations. No doubt it is a process being deprogrammed, so my apology in advance as I comment on ‘some’ things. I’m just cutting to the chase to hurry you along.

    “Heck, if you think of it, franchises are pyramid schemes” –

    FALSE. Franchises are sustained by retail sales outside of the network. If someone opens a McDonald’s franchise and has no customers, it closes. They do not recruit their neighbor to open up yet another restaurant for them to stay in business.

    “So what happened? Mary Kay died……[Idolizing of MK]…these problems weren’t around to this degree before about 2000 while MK was still running the show.”

    Are you talking about the several times divorced clown lady in the wig who built an MLM company empire? In the old days, MLMers and founders were able to get away with scamming. People paid for over-priced mediocre products, as they weren’t entirely aware of how the system worked. We didn’t have the resources to investigate such acts, because we didn’t have the internet. The internet has also allowed us to be more savvy consumers, and it has forced real businesses to become competitive. MLM seemingly worked in the old days because we were ignorant, and didn’t have access to information and other buying outlets.

    Another way to think of it, in principle. Smoking was cool and acceptable back in the day. Tobacco companies were thriving, and sales at corner stores were soaring. It still doesn’t make all that clever marketing and those cigarette sales a good thing. Appearances were deceiving.

    “What happened to meetings in your living room? Products that were quality? Directors that didn’t care if you bought one thing wholesale, they enjoyed your company? Nationals who talked more about how they hope they helped you, not about their commissions checks and diamonds?” –

    Again, appearances can be deceiving.

    “I was nearing the end of MK career…” –

    Using the term “Mary Kay career” sure does give the impression of legitimacy. Imagine if I said, “As I was nearing the end of my scamming career”; or “As I was nearing the end of my drug dealing career”. This is the context that gets lost. A MK career is a pyramid scheming “career”. It doesn’t sound as apropos now, does it.

    “So until I can enjoy MK for what it was intended to be, an opportunity to have a little something for myself where women didn’t judge me based on my wholesale order or recruiting totals, then count me out.” –

    The humdinger of being deprogrammed! Sadly, it never was about you! Mary Kay is a billion dollar debt-free company. They USED you to achieve this. How? Why wholesale orders and recruiting totals of course. They didn’t get there with women wanting a little something. It’s delusional to think they intended anything different given their empire – compared to the women in debt because of them.

  4. cindylu

    MK designed a company based on exploiting women and blaming them for this failed mlm. MK had a huge potential for evil. It has caused a huge amount of harm to thousands of families. Those families watched while MK indoctrinated a parent into abandoning common sense. MK herself promoted deceit. Deceit that included lying to husbands and other women. Women ended up divorced, in debt and some had PTSD. We believed in the mythology of women helping each other and being able to earn executive income. Instead MK had devised a way to become wealthy for herself, her heirs and a few NSD’s who began this charade in the 1970’s.

  5. Lazy Gardens

    “Mary Kay died. I think the true transformation of greed in these directors happened when a male took over her company”

    No, she lied regularly in person and in print. She lied about the number of husbands she had, about her supposedly impoverished childhood, her struggle as a divorced mother of three, about the founding of the company.

    What REALLY changed was when married women didn’t have to have husbands co-sign for credit cards! Then “he doesn’t need to know” and inventory pushing became possible and profitable.

    1. Neverpink

      This! Mary Kay lied up until the day she died. She was the conwoman who started it all.

      It’s simply not true that she was some “wonderful figure” until a man took over her company. Nope! MK herself orchestrated the whole fraud from the beginning, and she’d been lying about her life well before she founded the company.

  6. BestDecision

    You hit on so many real things that bothered me enough to get out, too. Thank you for your service to our country’s safety and for being brave enough to stick up for yourself. My career post-MK is more lucrative, more stable, and doesn’t cause me to think about it or check reports on nights or weekends.

  7. Jen

    Yeah, I agree with most of this until it gets to the part about the company going downhill because of the men taking over the company. Mary Kay was not a nice, caring woman who just wanted women to succeed. She wanted to succeed and did what she needed.

    1. MLM Radar

      I believe that the OP is still partially immersed in MK culture, even though she believes she’s out. It takes quite a while to completely de-program after leaving a cult.

      She still thinks the cult leader (MKA) was a good and caring person. She was trained to believe that, because it reinforces the “few current bad apples” line. She just hasn’t had a reason to question it.

      She thinks franchises are also pyramid schemes. She was trained to believe that, because it reinforces the claim that MLM is a legitimate business model. She never learned the real difference so she hasn’t questioned it.

      She believes MK used to value their consultants’ sales totals. She was trained to believe that, because it supports the idea that there’s a right way to run a successful MK sales business. She’s spent so long criticizing women for just doing MK the wrong way that she hasn’t yet realized there is no ethical way to succeed.

      She still has a firmly set vision of what MK was intended to be, which she thinks she enjoys, including NSDs and Directors who would rather spend girlfriend time at MK parties than sell or recruit. She was trained to believe this, because it is intended to make her feel better when she had one MK not-a-real-party after another when no one bought anything. The idea that no one stays in a real sales business long if they’re not consistently selling lots of products just hasn’t quite hit home yet.

      She thinks MK current and former consultants, Directors and NSDs and are a privileged group with insight that only they grasp. She was trained to believe this, because it made her feel special, which kept her ordering and recruiting. She hasn’t yet realized that women who refused to join often had even better insight; they spotted the fatal flaws in MK and all other MLMs before they ruined their credit ratings.

      Deprogramming takes time. She spent years in MK, so it may take years for her to stop thinking like a MK Person.

      The good news is that there is hope. If she stays out of MLMs she will eventually stop thinking like a MLM person. I’ve been here for about 9 years and watched the MK privileged attitude wear off of several of our regular contributors over time. I’ve seen the beliefs fall like dominoes as they gradually realize how many lies they accepted for truth.

      OP, welcome to Pink Truth. Please stay and keep contributing.

  8. Eric

    Sorry OP, but your blaming “males ” is just blatant sexism.

    It’s the equivalent to me saying GM had great labor relations with its union until that female CEO took over

    Bottom line, Mary Kay’s founder was a women (and she was as greedy and predatory as they come) and almost 100% of NSDs and top directors are women (the ones out there perpetuating the MLM chain)

    So save the male bashing please

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