Greed Throughout Mary Kay

Written by A Mary Kay Husband

I read a particularly disturbing email from my wife’s NSD. In the National Sales Director’s “marching orders” for the upcoming months, the NSD referenced the name “Mary Kay” no less than 40 times. Can you imagine that? FORTY one-liners, listing the attributes of this God/lady/or company called “Mary Kay.”

Most of the page was used to blast your senses, and the rest of the page is for praising God, and giving him his due, or credit for past production, and the last part was the offer of prizes for some kind of carrot being offered. These “personnel” goodie points appeared to be gleaned from ordinary, annual evaluation reports most executives get plus some godlike features thrown in for icing —but 40 times—C’mon! And greed was at the heart of it.

Deep in the recesses of darker days I recall the most subtle of brainwashing techniques and how they worked. Believe me, repetition is the best tool in the devil’s workshop when he wants something of value from you. In war it’s usually intelligence, and in the MLM of MK it’s perfected to relieve you and your followers of your money for products that they don’t care what you do with.

The technique I’m referring to is called the “Water Torture.” I’m sure most have heard of this, but for those who haven’t, it’s quite simply this:

The prisoner is immobilized, and deprived of most sensory input. Then the subject has a dripping water pipe positioned right above his forehead. He will lay there for hours and sometimes days with this contraption dripping water droplets right in the middle of his forehead, all the while listening to a recorded message set to soft music that contains a message your interrogator wants you to believe. Granted, this is referred to as “soft torture” and your captor will resort to other physically damaging methods if this doesn’t work.

The longer you resist, the drops of water seem to get ever larger and become like a trip hammer to your head and psyche. The message you’re supposed to “get” increases to a volume level that makes you feel like your eardrums are being ruptured.

The foundation of these techniques can still be found in modern day advertising. How many of us hit the mute button whenever a commercial pops up on the tube. Just keep in mind, all you have to do is accept one “reward” or in turn do the same to others as what’s been done to you and you are hooked. Good brainwashing techniques can begin after you take the offered rewards for your cooperation, and you see things their way.

In my humble opinion, people in this pink MLM act almost like captives after a thorough indoctrination by their leadership. Otherwise good intelligent women are schmoozed into this diaphanous world and they can become somewhat zombie like if they don’t have intervention.

Ask yourself… Aren’t you, with whispered voices, promised that this indeed is a business of women, run by women, for women? And doesn’t this have great appeal for anyone who has ever suffered abuse on any level?

By their nurturing, nature pathos runs rampant among women in the ranks. Everyone relates to your “I” story, and how you “stuck it to the man.” (One of actor Dennis Hoppers favorite movie lines in the 60’s.)

The part that bothers me the most is the women who believe they’re being protected by MKC are actually “sticking it to each other.” I don’t know what kind of creature feeds on itself, but Mary Kay women do. Greed takes over. It is often so subtle that these women don’t recognize it. And they certainly wouldn’t ever ADMIT they’re motivated by greed.

Additionally, there was an offer of a reward for anyone who jumped through her hoops (increased purchases by a certain percent compared to last year). In the movie Wall Street Michael Douglas, in his role as a Wall Street mogul, announced to a group of stockholders that greed was good. This apparently is the lever the leadership in Mary Kay intends to impress upon their downline.

You pay for everything you do in Mary Kay. You pay real money for cheap, shiny trinkets and the promise of rewards. You personally pay for every prize at every level that you buy. You will be allowed to BUY every step you walk across in that company “stage.” The designer dresses, shoes, purses, accessories, the airplane fare, the hotel expense, food, buses, director suits – everything connected with “your stage walk” is paid for by you. And it is paid for by you because EVERY LEVEL OF THE PYRAMID requires it.

You pull your credit card out and authorize Mary Kay to charge it for everything from the time you step through the door of this corporation until the day you leave.

Hear me loud and clear – the company pays for nothing! You pay for everything. The revenue the company brings in is solely from you—you are their only source of income including the “compensatory” incentives brought about by you using the Mary Kay sources. Please remember that. Please remember that there is greed throughout this entire organization, and every bit of “advice” you receive is designed to get you to spend more, so they make more.


  1. NayMKWay

    One of the marks of being in a cult is how emotionally difficult it can be to get out. Even if it’s your own decision, it can be gut-wrenching to push it away. It’s not like leaving a job you love with people you love working with. Sure, that can hurt, too, but your job isn’t your whole life. But a cult is like emotional bondage.

    Two days ago, SuzyQ wrote that leaving Mary Kay felt like surgery without anesthesia. Over on the Married To An Ambot blog*, blog owner “Anna Banana” reported that her husband had to hire a professional deprogrammer to help him get over Amway. As with SuzyQ and MK, it was his decision to leave Amway, but he needed outside help to get Amway out of his system. That is a cult, folks.

    It’s a sure bet MK Corporate didn’t write that letter for the NSD mentioned in this article. And I have to wonder if the NSD was even aware she was endlessly repeating “Mary Kay” like a scratched CD. Probably not. NSD is likely oblivious to how indoctrinated she has become.

    If you’re reading this and thinking your joining Mary Kay (or some other MLM) wasn’t such a great idea, does the thought of leaving fill you with dread? If it does, that should tell you something. To paraphrase:

    “That’s exactly why you NEED to LEAVE Mary Kay!”

    * – Caution: strong language over there.

    1. Char

      Cult-like behavior, addiction, emotional bondage, for sure! Here’s a snippet from a new reddit post entitled, “Boss babe turned anti mlm after psych ward stay”:

      “…..Seriously my screen time for the last several months has been over 18 hours a day. I was constant never stopping obsessed. MY HUSBAND HAS BEEN SO MAD and worried about me……….I have made lots of money but i didn’t even care about the money I was addicted to the dopamine rush I think from all of it. I guess that’s why I didn’t realize what I was doing. Seriously I’ve been sucked into this toxic positivity BS and I’ve been PREACHING IT!!! I’m soooo embarrassed and ashamed and just don’t even know what to do!!!!…….“

  2. MakeupLover

    I remember when I realized that the Star prize I was coveting was far cheaper if I were to purchase it myself and then the light bulb went off: Yes! My orders were paying for the prize and even then they were cheap and I could buy better. I looked at the requirements for the diamond bee and knew I could buy the bee outright and pay far less than the ordering and recruiting requirements. I got tired of all the fees charged for training events, guest brunches, Saturday makeovers. Nothing was free and it became very apparent that my sales would not cover the fees for everything I had to pay, certainly not on a consistent basis. While the concept of makeup and girlfriend time was fun in my mind, the reality was it was a big ball of stress. My family had allergy issues to MK products and when I was counting on selling to my friend and her huge family network, my director recruited her and there went my warm market. It was difficult to have sustained product sales and I gave up thinking this could be a viable career. Too much depended on other people and their time. I’m happy in my job where we get regular bonuses, paid medical and dental, 401k match, and PTO. My weekend and holidays are my own and I can enjoy my family and friends with no ulterior motive.

    1. BestDecision

      No one talks about adding the hours of starting a new MK business on top of existing jobs. After work classes, deliveries, phone calls, cleaning mirrors, unit meetings. I never had an entire night or weekend off after I started. It’s exhausting!

      You’re so right that THIS IS A REALLY GOOD LIFE. Paid consistently, benefits, and not counting on people to show up. How did we ever do it?!

  3. Cindylu

    Greed: The promotion of pink cars, a chance to wear a silly crown, tiara and sit on a throne, all those cheap pins on a ladder etc. Definitely excess is promoted in MK. Trips, Jewelry, accolades, and discussions of supposed six figured salaries. Sadly when trying to balance the values Faith, Family and Career along with trying to justify the deceit, it takes its toll. MK soon shows itself to be unethical, untrustworthy, uncaring and rarely profitable. Just the absurd titles they give themselves are laughable and vain.

Comments are closed.