Back on the Hamster Wheel

Sometime within the last year, sales director Gabby Blanton lost her unit. She’s under Jamie Taylor, so she’s an important part of becoming a national area. I’m sure Gabby was convinced that losing her unit was HER fault. She didn’t work hard enough. (Sorry, the truth is that the system sets you up for failure, which is why sales directors lose their units just as fast as Mary Kay churns out new sales directors.)

Here’s Gabby when she was a director last year:

And here she is, back in DIQ (director in qualification):

It’s so sad to me when these women don’t realize that they’re running on a hamster wheel. They run and run and run and never get anywhere. This poor woman is going to spend so much time and money… running up her credit card more to place orders in the names of her new recruits, just so she can get the numbers needed to become a sales director again.

And her odds of losing that unit all over again are high. Mary Kay is a pyramid scheme. 99% of participants in MLMs lose money. When will women realize that they are not the problem? It’s not because you didn’t work hard enough. It’s because the system is set up for you to fail while Mary Kay profits.

31 Comments

    1. raisinberry

      Leadership was cancelled? Wow I missed that. How will they ever get the pump they need to sell Spring Color and Body Wash? Oh I so miss hair mascara! I want the job naming all the cosmetic colors! You know…just perfect names that would fit only mary kay!
      Pick Your Pocket Pink
      Scripted Scarlet
      Hide Your Debt Honey…

      12
      1. Ruby Slippers

        Virtual . I forgot to add all the money they will save on clothes, nails, hair, Uber, etc . Probably add another 500 towards inventory and fake recruits from family and friends they to finish DIQ . We know everyone does it .
        Find a way or make a way .

  1. Kristen

    I’m an introvert and I can’t imagine being a Mary Kay sales director! This just occurred to me. Are any of you former directors introverted? The sheer volume of people you’d have to approach, call, warm chatter, etc.. must have drained every drop of energy. I just couldn’t.

    1. BestDecision

      I am! It was the nastiest feeling to approach a stranger with a business card. So unnatural! Calling people to confirm for appointments, having people not show…it was all so exhausting and defeating. And we had to do massive numbers just to make slight progress. Awful!

      1. Mountaineer95

        So I worked as a territory sales rep for a manufacturer of giftware (think Hallmark, hospital gift shops, etc). I did quite a bit of cold calling potential customers (the store owners/buyers) but it usually went very well, and I opened a lot of new accounts. One day, when I was leaving one such customer (a super cool boutique in Newark, Ohio), right after I left her store and was walking on the sidewalk towards my car, a woman runs up to me and starts rubbing some cream on my hand. Like WHAT? It felt like an assault. Turns out she was selling some MLM product named Nerium I think. I did take a sample of it (and ran to my car while she was still yapping), and later I did put it on my face. Horrible. So drying.

        1. NayMKWay

          Well, nerium is another name for oleander, which is poisonous, so I wouldn’t want any of it anywhere near any part of me. It’s banned in Canada because it really does contain oleander oil (supposedly rendered “safe” by—methods).

  2. raisinberry

    You know, the other part of this is what happens to the targets?
    So once more, you begin the journey of churning through people with a secret motive, that you have to hide from them, under the idea that you know better than they what would be good for them. So “hey I need a face model”, or “I need 30 opinions”, or, “I get credit for practice interviews”…only to lure them into a recruiting situation, and then, a “you can’t sell from an empty wagon” situation. Funny how it never occured to us that even though we saw and were being trained in manipulation…we justified it all….”for their own good”, don’t ya know. Yeah it is just a happy little business sorority that tricks people into warehousing product!

    10
  3. .wow.

    Gabby had A LOT of personal things going on last year. I can see you creeped through her Instagram, but conveniently left out the fact that she suffered a miscarriage. With that being said.. she decided to take a mental and emotional break from MK.

    Do your research before speaking. She had things going on. Shame on you. Mary Kay aside.. you should never scrutinize someone for taking a step down when they couldn’t handle something due to personal circumstances out of their control.

    2
    14
    1. TRACY

      I didn’t “conveniently leave out anything.” I’m not here to publicize her medical condition, but apparently you are.

      Yes, we have to say someone “stepped down” because they wanted to focus on family or some such thing. The truth is she lost her unit, regardless of personal circumstances. And yet, she’s willing to jump right back on the hamster wheel and do it all over again.

    2. J

      I felt the need to take a mental and emotional break from mk too. It was just too much positivity for me to cope with.

      You see I had real problems that were causing a lot of stress in my life, I just couldn’t expend energy without a guarantee return on my efforts. I needed to know that every ounce of energy spent would bring something in return. I could eat food, breathe and sleep. I could go to my job that paid me for the work I did.

      For the most part, people understood why I was stepping away. I mean of course it didn’t slow the encouragement to scrape together just $225 to stay active. It also didn’t stop the invites for $30 holiday inn luncheons even though I had no food in my fridge.

      There was no shortage of belief that I could turn my silly troubles upside down. If I could just get my credit card limit increased. Then I could afford opportunity. I could open myself up to being blessed!!!

      I blessed myself with 8k of debt through the cheering of my director. She was older and wiser. She said to trust her; it was exciting. It made my heart race. It raced even more as reality sank in.

      I found myself living in a high crime neighborhood, deep in depression, looking at my numbers. I had to do the harder thing than believe in myself, I had to be honest with myself. The only believing I did, was believing I could make more money if I stopped doing the thing that was robbing me. Believing that I was more than the debt on my shoulders, more than the poor choices I’d made under the influence of toxic positivity. Believing my life was still worth living even though I was beyond ashamed of my naive actions.

      So yes, I took a mental and emotional break from mk, and you know what I found? I didn’t keep needing to refill my cup because I was no longer being bled dry.

      13
      1. Juliet

        You have no idea how much heartbreak your matter of fact statements of truth convey to me. I am so glad you are on this side of the story. you got me at a loss for words, thank you for sharing this.

    3. Kristen

      Your attack presumes that Tracy is blaming/shaming Gabby for failing without knowing why she failed (tragic life event). But this post supports Gabby. It illustrates the repeated failure of Mary Kay’s “business” model. Your outrage at Tracy is because MK teaches women to blame themselves or fellow members when somebody “fails”. Turning us against each other distracts us from seeing the truth and that’s just how Mary Kay wants it. If Mary Kay empowered women, Gabby wouldn’t need to take a “mental and emotional” break. If Gabby worked for a company that cared for women, it would have allowed her to keep her unit. But, oh yeah. Mary Kay only empowers women if they are forking over the dough. Mary Kay conveniently switches from “sisterhood” to “rough and tumble business model” depending on which image suits them at that moment. In Gabby’s situation, I’m sure the argument is: (sigh, shrugged shoulders) “well, in business you have to make quotas”. But in another scenario , the opposite argument is conveniently plucked from the bag of tricks: “MK supports women, unlike In the cutthroat corporate world.” This constant contradictory position is what drove me out of MK. There is no position. They switch like a slippery snake to whatever you need to hear to keep you paying out.

      1. TRACY

        My issue isn’t even about failing. Almost everyone fails in MK. It’s about failing, and then setting yourself up for the failure all over again. You already know the punchline. Why are you repeating the joke?

          1. .wow.

            Guys. I don’t even care enough about how it all works or how you all perceive MK and the ranks. Gabby has openly and publicly shared over a year ago about her loss. It’s not a secret and it doesn’t make me a terrible woman for defending her genuinely just going through a rough time.

            Regardless of the nature of this business.. I still don’t agree with how you chose to plaster her picture and degrade her by passive aggressively mentioning the “hamster wheel”

            I really think it’s sad how you all have made an entire website dedicated to just hating on MK and the women who choose to be apart of it. I did research just as everyone else can. No one is forced to buy inventory.

            1
            7
            1. TRACY

              Plaster her picture???? What do she and Jamie do on Instagram? Is that publicly plastering her picture?

              The article has nothing to do with Gabby’s medical condition and it was in poor taste for you to bring it up.

              The hamster wheel isn’t passive aggressive. It’s aggressive. This is exactly what Mary Kay is, in addition to a dishonest scam.

              This site isn’t about “hating on MK.” It’s about telling the women the truth about this scam and how they’re almost guaranteed to lose money. No one is “forced” to do anything, but it’s awfully hard to make an informed decision when women like Jamie and Gabby lie to potential recruits about their scam. We’re just leveling the playing field a bit.

              Thanks again for your repeated visits here.

              11
              2
            2. TRACY

              You mention that everyone can do research. Where would they get information on MK if sites like Pink Truth did not exist? Directly from the company and recruiters? Because they provide dishonest information.

            3. Kristen

              If you “don’t care about how it all works”, you should., at least if you care about others as you seem to. Not a knock on you, I got sucked in too. Of course Mary Kay is not going to publish, outwardly promote, or ever acknowledge that inventory is required. You won’t find that in print. The system you claim to consider unimportant is based on hidden truths. The official position of Mary Kay is very different from the covert, unofficial position, which is the method you are verbally coached to use when you attend the unit meetings. These insidious methods are not an anomaly. They are extremely widespread and the company does not stop them from being used. Because of the reality of the MLM business model, which I was not aware of in MK, success is extremely rare. I will tell you what I didn’t know and wish I had: these women are LYING about their success. It’s a hard pill to choke down, but if you could look at their taxes, you would see it. Keep reading here, other sites around the web, and educating yourself. Make up your mind using objective sources, not only what Mary Kay tells you.

            4. NayMKWay

              Of course no one is “forced” to buy inventory. No one “holds a gun to their heads,” which is another favorite among the blame-the-victim chorus. No, what happens instead is that women are cajoled and manipulated into buying inventory they do not need with slick slogans like “You can’t sell from an empty wagon,” and “These limited-edition items will sell out before you know it, get them while you can!” Then they end up with a garage full of stuff they will have to either throw away or sell at a loss.

              Deception and manipulation are the issues here, not violent extortion. But non-violent extortion is still extortion, and it’s still wrong.

    4. Mountaineer95

      If her unit was otherwise successful prior to the miscarriage, why didn’t MK Corp give her a leave of absence to deal with it, then let her return as a director (rather than take the unit she worked so hard for and put it under her direct upline)? Then, when she felt ready to return, why didn’t MK Corp give her unit members back to her and let her carry on as a director as she was prior to such a leave? It wouldn’t have cost the company a dime; her unit was still being managed in her absence. But instead, Corp keeps all of the sales mad by her past unit, and now she must create a NEW unit from scratch. Which again the company gains the sales made by this new unit.

      We’re not criticizing her for how she handled a major personal tragedy. We’re criticizing how Mary Kay Corporate handled it. And she is not alone; it’s how MK treats ALL of their directors.

      1. Mountaineer95

        To state it in a way that explains it for all directors:

        MK Corpse WANTS directors fail. Why? MK makes MORE money when they fail. How?

        When a director “steps down”, for ANY reason, or is stripped of her directorship for not meeting the requirements, her unit doesn’t leave also. Her unit is absorbed by her immediate upline. That unit still buys wholesale. MK Corp still profits from them. Then, if the past director decides she wants to be director again, she starts from scratch to build her unit. NEW recruits, NEW orders, and MK makes money from it.

        So the fact that MK holds a firm line that all directors lose their directorship if not meeting criteria or production is NOT just some shruggable “oh, it’s just how the business is” thing; it is a carefully constructed profit center for MK Corporate.

        And us even being willing to mention it is NOT negative, and certainly not meant to criticize the former/aspiring directors (except to maybe express frustration that they cannot see the forest for the trees). It’s meant to get women to understand how MK isn’t supportive of them and doesn’t empower them, especially at times when they most need it. But they’re so indoctrinated into disbelieving anything perceived as “negative” is mean-spirited and untrue that they will instead attack us for daring to uncover it.

      2. TRACY

        I will also criticize her for going along with this big sham. Saying she had to step away etc. and now she’s ready to work, and MK is there for her now that she is ready. (I haven’t seen her say this specifically, but that’s the common line.) THe ruse that this is a real business keeps being perpetuated over and over,

Leave a Reply to raisinberry Cancel reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *