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

Don’t Blame MK for Bad Judgment

Christmas tree of different color slices of lipsticks and stickers nearby

A former Mary Kay consultant lost money years ago, but is going to try it again and she is going to make money. She will not be “silly enough” or “stupid,” and she won’t have “bad judgment” like Pink Truth members.

Wow! I googled how to get back in and found your site. :) I was in MK years ago when I was divorced and broke, living in a small town, and stopped simply because the market was saturated (my MOTHER became a consultant the month after I did–it was stupid) and I just let it go, using what product I had, writing off the loss of my minor investment mentally as a lesson learned. Now, I live in a metro area, and though I see a car with an ad occasionally, I don’t see overt advertisement here. It looks like a more marketable area.

I will, however, never be silly enough to be forced to buy products I can’t sell. Other than the most cost-effective introductory kit that I had to purchase all those years ago, and won’t ever have to do again, I would never buy in gross. After Mama died, and I had her remainders and mine when I recently moved, and all those shades of base that we just don’t have clientele for went in the trash. I’ll simply never do that again. I did use some of it for stage makeup and gave some away for Halloween costumes and for Christmas presents (along with Satin Hands sets and other products) to friends or acquaintances, but still had lots to toss in the trash–my point is, I won’t buy anything for which I don’t have orders.

I won’t try to get people to be on my team, because I didn’t sign up so that I could be in multi-level marketing. I don’t believe in it and I won’t do it.

Being talked into taking out a LOAN to buy a huge inventory that you don’t know for sure that you have a market for is just to be blunt–STUPID. I can’t fault Mary Kay for trying to push product–they are in sales. It is really a personal decision to TAKE OUT A LOAN. Every person has the right to be stupid–and we’ve all done it a time or two. Don’t blame the company for people’s BAD JUDGEMENT. EVERY one should develop a backbone and use it to help them stand when they say: “No, I’m not buying that. I only need this list of things.”

Much to my surprise, I am a wonderful salesperson, mostly due to my adherence to truth-telling in all situations, and people recognize and appreciate that. I have an independent insurance business, and have done several other sales jobs–teaching high school being one of the more fun of those. I don’t NEED to sell MK, I just want to. I think it will give me an opportunity to meet people and meet their needs.

I go on vacation with my husband, very occasionally, when I can work their schedules into ours, with my children. I do not need to go on trips with hundreds of screaming women who are excited about diamonds and rubies. Proverbs 31:10 says that a the worth of a virtuous woman is high above rubies (intent being precious stones). Yes, I wear them, Mama left them, so I wear them, but it’s not that big a deal to me. Godly women wouldn’t be all about that part, would they?

I am a strong enough personality to NOT be forced to sell crap that I don’t believe in–I HATE the skin care, and won’t even attempt it. I’m an oily, soap-and water girl, 44, and am guessed to be in my early 30′s regularly–the skin care doesn’t work for me, is certainly not worth the money for me, and I would never try to sell it to anyone. I don’t believe in it. I do, however, believe in the MK base. I believe 105 is my oh-so-ivory number. I miss it and the lipstick. I’ll pay the $20 to re-join, just so that I can have my base and lipstick for cheap, make some new friends, and sell to people who want to buy and have the discretionary income to do so. Anything else would be unethical.

I suppose I’ve said all this to say, it’s possible to sell Mary Kay without selling your soul. I know what you have to do to get a car, and frankly, I just bought a new car of my own–don’t need a pink one, no matter how COOL they may be.

Don’t hate because you made the decision to throw thousands of dollars into the trash. If you are in and don’t like it, get out, or back down. If you don’t like your pushy upline, get out and find someone nicer to work with who understands your goals. I, for instance, don’t really have any serious goals, it’s more of a hobby for me, and the person I am reenacting under knows that.

Don’t EVER pressure anyone to do anything against their husband’s will: THAT is totally against God’s plan for the home. I don’t see anything wrong with someone making a valiant attempt to “sell it to him”. If he says no, and he is the Godly husband that he should be, then there are reasons that it’s a bad idea right now, and that lady should abide by his wishes. The Proverbs 31 Woman was in sales, by the way–that’s always a major point–her husband was very proud of her. :)

I apologize for the randomness of my thoughts. I appreciate your site and the pitfalls that you point out. Young women need to understand what is truly expected of them to make MK a viable full-time business. MOST of us just aren’t up for that, and they need to know before they get emotionally involved and over-invest, which I’ve already stated. It’s a great idea for people who have money to spend to make money, or for people like me who don’t really intend to do it full time–which I know they hate, but it’s my decision–and yours.

Blessings, ladies.

Don’t believe it. You cannot profit in Mary Kay without selling your soul to the devil. You might be able to make a little bit of pocket change. But consistent profits, especially at a level that will make a difference to your family, are impossible without deceitful recruiting and frontloading of inventory.


  1. NayMKWay

    That was a pretty tedious diatribe to get through. She listed all the things Mary Kay pressures IBCs to do: sign up in a saturated market, attend meetings, buy inventory you don’t need, recruit. . .and says she’ll NEVER do those things, because they’re STUPID.

    Well, yeah, they are stupid–so why would you join a company that coerces its sales force to do stupid things that cause them financial harm? Oh, right. They’re “in sales,” so anything they have to do to sell product is OK, right? But YOU would never do that, because it’s immoral to sell someone something they don’t need.

    The mind boggles at the level of disconnection from reality here. But hey, she seems to think teaching high school is being “in sales,” so I guess I shouldn’t be surprised.

  2. MLM Radar

    She assumes that she can sell enough makeup at “full retail” price to make it worth her time. Ok, go ahead and try.

    Yes, I heard about Sephora and Ulta being considered non-essential businesses, and being asked to close. Perhaps she thinks she can get a share of that market. But she’s not thinking it through. People still won’t switch to Mary Kay because (1) We still have plenty of the good kind in hand; (2) We’re staying home, so there’s very little reason for us to use the makeup we do have; (3) There’s no way I’m letting a potentially infected stranger into my house for a pretend-makeover session.

    Sorry. Nice try. Doesn’t work.

    1. Plus, if someone shops at Super Target or Walmart, they can get good quality drugstore products for much less in conjunction with their grocery shopping. Besides, who’s really wearing any amount of makeup right now?

    1. MLM Radar

      Good catch! I missed that.

      If she was a traditional independent insurance broker she probably wouldn’t have enough time to hold other sales jobs, like teaching high school?????

      Not that she’ll have many requests to be a high school teacher for the rest of the school year…

  3. Dazed and Confused

    I was deep into Mary Kay for a while and deep into debt because of it. All with the hope it would be better. Now, I only get products if I need them and if I have orders for it. PS – I only use 1 product now but still have a solid customer base. 🙂

  4. roo2

    You know the current events in America have us all on high alert going through a full range if emotions, different concerns, and priorities. But thankfully the huns on Social Media have plenty to keep me entertained with. Brittany Wirt just mentioned she limits her social media to limit the negativity. While experts are coming out to say limit your news intake and I think that is 100% accurate for life always, I am certain she must mean something else. Which makes me want to say negativity and reality are not the same. Someone being upset about their business not making any money or stressed about groceries, healthcare, family members is not being negative that is reacting to the reality of your life. Just another tongue in cheek for to say I will stay in the cloud of my pink Bubble.

    Also the sephora and ulta closed posts are killing me!!! ? Huns, you are right!! Sephora, Ulta, Nordstrom, Macys all closed all ready for our pajama perusing from the couch!! I will support those businesses that are actually paying their workers during this difficult time. Thanks though

    1. BestDecision

      If MK products were in such demand, there’d be no lull in production since Career conference and unit meetings are cancelled. Real retail sales would drive orders, not hype from a speech or ribbon presentation.

        1. BestDecision

          What I’m explaining is that we always had a surge in production after Career Conference, but they’d have consistent numbers if the product actually sold well to consumers. No speeches to drive that this year means April and May commission checks are going to be very low.

          I know you weren’t in MK, so I hope that helps.

  5. Rebecca

    Well, I taught high school for 10 years. Then, I switched careers and worked in the fitness industry for 12 years, in which sales was one of my key job duties. This much I know:

    1) Teaching high school is not a sales job.
    2) A sales job is not MK because a sales job pays you base + commissions on sales of products/services, not on recruiting downline.

    Best of luck to the author. I hope that you are able to truly do MK for fun. But have you thought about just buying the MK products you like from eBay and partaking of some fun that does not require you to explain away your decision to family, friends, and online strangers?

  6. JanRD

    “The Proverbs 31 Woman was in sales, by the way–that’s always a major point–her husband was very proud of her.”

    The Proverbs 31 woman was not participating in an MLM. I don’t see any mention of recruiting. These scriptural out-of-context references are annoying.

  7. Lazy Gardens

    “I didn’t sign up so that I could be in multi-level marketing. I don’t believe in it and I won’t do it.” Sorry, sweetheart, you are in it and you are doing it. You are part of a downline and supporting the MLM structure with every purchase you make and every product you sell.

  8. Mountaineer95

    So, her last time around, the market saturation got her. Apparently this time it won’t, because she’s in a larger area? Well, unless she asked for (and was told) exactly how many current IBCs and up are in her metro area (and that will never happen), she can’t be sure that it won’t be a problem this time as well. Oh, and she’s not going to recruit her customers. Well, good for her, but guess what: her upline and peers in MK indeed WILL recruit her customer if she won’t. Everybody should know about the opportunity, right? Regardless of who does the recruiting, she better believe that her “customers” won’t be hers for long.

  9. Char

    Does she really think MKC and upline top liars will prosper with consultomers like her? Her disconnect with reality is astounding. The MLM company, the real (corrupt) business, doesn’t thrive without “deceitful recruiting and frontloading of inventory.” It is inherent to the MLM system.

    Too many consultants like her and Mary Kay goes kaput!

    This is what I mean by “it’s not about you” the way the consultant thinks it is. Look at her entire email. She has no concept as to how Mary Kay runs it’s business, and how they make money. The whole email revolves around her and how she plans to run “her” business. It’s a false premise that it is her business, it’s not, and then she starts rationalizing that from her perspective.

    To add insult to her delusion, she craps on with:

    “Don’t EVER pressure anyone to do anything against their husband’s will: THAT is totally against God’s plan for the home……..he is the Godly husband that he should be, then there are reasons that it’s a bad idea right now, and THAT LADY SHOULD ABIDE BY HIS WISHES.”

    Who told her that? That ancient, outdated book that was written by…..you guessed it…..MEN?!!! Can we all take a moment to think about that? C’mon lady, the world is no longer flat. Did you know women can vote now, drive, choose their own husband, and say no to sex? It’s 2020 for Pete’s sake.

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