You Only Project the Negative Side of Mary Kay

Too bad we’re not showing the other side of Mary Kay, because we’d look more credible if we did. Sigh.

I recently found your site. I am searching for the other side of the stories. I am seeing a lot negative feedback about Mary Kay. I think it hurts the credibility of your site to only project the negative side of any one company. In this instance it is Mary Kay.

I would feel that the site would be more credible with a two sided version of these stories. The blog’s come off as a complaint session. It may be therapuetic to those scorned by poor decision making.

I think Better Business Bureau does a reputable job exposing unethical business practices because at least they examine both sides of the story.

Hypothetically, what about the gal that joins Mary Kay, embezzles from her own company to pay for something non Mary Kay related and blames her poor money management on the cult like influence of the company? Is this a Mary Kay flaw?

I think that as I am reading these “truths”, that which your web site is misleading me to believe are “truths”, I am more influenced to join and stay with Mary Kay. I am sure this is not the first of emails expressing concern over the nature of your site. I would just like to encourage you to raise your standards a bit and verify stories and present both sides. I am so disappointed that women would make such a public display of their fundamental personality flaws that helped them to the brink of Mary Kay disaster.

Well, if all the truth we’ve given here makes her more likely to stay with Mary Kay, I think she’s probably beyond help.


  1. Eyes wide Open

    Kay other for sure. “Embezzling from her own company,” is a dead give away. This statement has always made me laugh. Just how does one embezzle from their own money? My Director would toss out that caution from time to time when she recognized consultants were not placing orders. “Are you reinvesting in your business? Do not embezzle from your company and buy those cute shoes at DSW until you have made that investment.”

    An uneducated pink fogged consultant could actually be fearful of doing something wrong with their own funds. Yikes!

  2. raisinberry

    The place where you only get one side is Mary Kay itself. Negativity ( actual money loss, lack of appointments, no shows, excessive pressure to attend and pay for “trainings”) is not permitted or discussed. You like balanced information? Well, Mary Kay Inc is the LAST place for it.

    1. TRACY

      Yep. I’ve always said that if it’s okay for MK to only talk about the positive, then it’s okay for us to only talk about the negative. What’s good for the goose, is good for the gander. 🙂

      1. NayMKWay

        It occurs to me that “…only talk about the positive” implies there really are positives worth mentioning. “Crafting a pack of tissue-thin lies,” or “spinning their own false positives out of whole cloth” is more like it.

        Pink Truth is negative because it’s the truth, is what I’m saying.

  3. Kristen

    “…blames her poor money management on the cult like influence of the company? Is this a Mary Kay flaw?”

    No, but whether a consultant manages money well or not is irrelevant. MLM systems don’t work either way. This writer is taking the blame-the-victim stance, as always. Each of these Friday critics attack Pink Truth with the presupposition that Mary Kay works. If there was greater than a 1% chance of success there, maybe I could be called bitter. But I was told this was easy, possible for anyone who could say, “Up, up, up!” Not by one person, but everyone in Mary Kay.

  4. Wasrings90

    I thought this paragraph was hilarious

    “I think Better Business Bureau does a reputable job exposing unethical business practices because at least they examine both sides of the story”

    Yeah ummm no they actually really don’t. They just ask for replies from the businesses that people are complaining about and if they don’t get one they have a low alphabet rating from the BBB.

    Why do you think Angie’s List, Glass Door, Yelp, etc exist… Because the BBB is a horrible resource to find a reputable company listing in many areas of the U.S.

    also can you actually embezzle from yourself for doing a hobby? I never understood the logic of this – maybe because I see the commission check as my paycheck, and if it’s a paycheck I should be able to buy the shoes with my wages……

      1. NayMKWay

        I’ve read horror stories of small businesses hounded by the BBB to join lest “something bad” should happen, like they’re running a protection racket. How do they get away with that?

  5. Destiny Angel

    ” I would just like to encourage you to raise your standards a bit and verify stories and present both sides.”

    I’m sure Tracy would if you’d just send your Schedule C and all of your properly tallied books showing your income, out-goings and time spent working “your business”.

  6. NayMKWay

    “It may be therapuetic to those scorned by poor decision making.”

    I dare anyone to parse that sentence.

    “I think Better Business Bureau does a reputable job exposing unethical business practices because at least they examine both sides of the story.”

    Hah! The BBB has its own dodge going. You pay them money. As soon as your check clears, they list you as a member in good standing. If someone sends them a complaint about your business, they forward it to you. If you respond in a timely mamner, you get an A+ rating! Your “response” could be, “Too bad, no refunds, that’s our policy. We’re keeping your first-born child,” and they’re fine with that. The only thing they examine both sides of is the dollah bills they be rakin’ in. Cha-ching!

    “Hypothetically, what about the gal that joins Mary Kay, embezzles from her own company to pay for something non Mary Kay related and blames her poor money management on the cult like influence of the company? Is this a Mary Kay flaw?”

    Of course it’s a Mary Kay flaw! They are the ones exerting the cult-like influences. For example, it is they who plant the notion that using your own money to buy food for your family instead of more unsellable make-up is somehow embezzling. What utter crap.

    “…I am more influenced to join and stay with Mary Kay.”

    Influenced to join? Oh, come on. I was born at night, but not last night. No one misuses the definition of embezzling like that unless they’ve been in Mary Kay long enough to succumb to its cult-like influence. You’re no disinterested third party; stop lying.

    How ironic that a letter complaining this site is too one-sided is itself completely one-sided. Why don’t you look at both sides of Pink Truth instead of being so negative, huh?

    “I am so disappointed that women would make such a public display of their fundamental personality flaws…”

    And you close by blaming the victims. More proof you bleed pink.

    Look, if you want Tracy to cover the positives of Mary Kay, send her your Schedule C showing how much money you’re making. She’s been waiting for 15 years for just one of her critics to prove their claims of MK success, but it hasn’t happened yet. Gee, I wonder why…

  7. AnonyMouse

    “I recently found your site. I am searching for the other side of the stories. I am seeing a lot negative feedback about Mary Kay.”

    If you were looking for “the other side of the stories” why are you surprised to see negative feedback? And why were you searching for the other side? Are you harboring some doubts about Mary Kay? Because if you are, that’s okay. You don’t have to be afraid of your doubts. Doubts demand to be examined.

    “I would just like to encourage you to raise your standards a bit and verify stories and present both sides.”

    What we are doing here is presenting the side Mary Kay refuses to show. They present only the information that makes them look good and cover up anything else. They throw anyone who has anything even remotely negative to say about them under the bus. Do you require that positive stories be “verified” or only the negative stories? Because that is a tactic high-control groups use to keep their followers loyal.

    “I am so disappointed that women would make such a public display of their fundamental personality flaws that helped them to the brink of Mary Kay disaster.”

    And right here, you just did EXACTLY what Mary Kay does to invalidate any narrative that paints them in a negative light. You threw the women under the bus. You attacked their character, their personalities, their intelligence, their integrity, their ability, all of it. This is gaslighting – when one party convinces another party that what they saw ISN’T what they saw.

    Here’s a little bit of my story. I did not reach “the brink of Mary Kay disaster”. After I signed up to be a consultant, the layers of requirements and rules and facts began to peel away. It started with the sign up fees. A $99 starter kit, right? It’s not much money. If you can’t afford $99, you are the person who NEEDS this business! How often have you heard that line? So you sign the consultant agreement, and you order the $99 starter kit. Then as you begin your “training”, you find our that in order to be considered “active” you must place a $250 product order. So in order to access ALL the wonders Mary Kay has for you, it’s actually $349. BUT there’s more. In order for you to be considered “qualified” to your sponsor, you must place a $600 product order. So now we’re up to $699. And in order to gain promotions, I had to convince women to spend this money. Women for whom $99 was a lot of money. And that fact was concealed from me until I signed the consultant agreement. Mary Kay will justify this concealment by saying they don’t want to “overwhelm” or “scare away” potential new consultants. And they do this at EVERY level. I am a person who believes in being upfront with the facts. But this was frowned upon in Mary Kay. I could not in good conscience do this to other women. So I never recruited anyone. I chose not to. I made up my mind that I was going to make my income through sales, that I would be one of those success stories instead. Queen of Sales. I was going to walk that Seminar stage one day as an example of how you DON’T have to recruit to be successful at Mary Kay. If I did end up with recruits, it would be because they saw my success and came to me to join my team. So I gave it a go. What I found was that in order to get people to buy products, I had to do so many sales and freebies that it ate away at my profit. And don’t tell me that was my mistake – corporate and the directors tell consultants to do it that way. I was following their advice. I was being a good girl and doing what I was told. At weekly meetings and in the eyes of Mary Kay, I could report high numbers, but the truth was my profit was not even close to the double-wholesale number the company estimates. There is more to the story but it involves personal details of not just myself, but others, and their stories are not mine to tell. I walked away from Mary Kay not as a “disaster”, not because of a “fundamental personality flaw”, but because when I saw behind the curtain I could not support such a business model. Having critical thinking skills, being able to do basic math, asking legitimate questions, being upfront with all the details involved…those are good things. But Mary Kay discourages them. Why do you think that is? It’s not so new consultants don’t get “overwhelmed”. It’s so that they stay. This is classic high-control group – a classification of cult – behavior. Sit with that information for a little while. This is the other side of the story. This is what we’re here to tell.

  8. NayMKWay

    That was beautifully said, AnonyMouse. I wonder how many of the PT critics are lashing out because they fear their own doubts. They’re so terrified of “negative” thoughts that anything that reinforces their own nagging doubts must be attacked.

  9. Cindylu

    You want two Sides to this story. MK Directors, several books and hundreds of Consultants have raved about MK decades. What was good about MK? It was a temporary belief that MK cared about and empowered women. I believed for a while that MK would allow me to care for my young children and do well in MK. I believed that Seminar would give me the answers to doing well. I even enjoyed hearing MK herself speak. Now for the reality. MK was reprimanding her top NSD’s: Anne Newbury, Barbara Sunden etc. for NOT working harder or earning enough. Imagine you’ve been earning millions for years (10 or more years) and you’ve earned many pink Cadillacs, trips, prizes etc.) Somehow though according to those at the top of this company: (it’s not good enough). Also why is it ok to boast as a Director about a “Love Check” that you received years ag? As to the better business bureau, they work with the business community. You can report a business for unethical or other concern. Rarely does your complaint go anywhere. An individual who does poor quality work more than once will sadly be removed just a few months later. Your friends and relatives can find a reliable company. This site is for those who trusted MK and were betrayed. Some stayed in MK for many years. They believed and hoped this was above board and ethical. Ask yourself is MK ethical? Do products fly off shelves? Are Directors in 2021 still booking classes that hold each week? Is there no front loading in MK? Why do products constantly change? Is the pink car really free? (Are there No quotas?) Is MK listed as an mlm on Wikipedia? (What is dual marketing really?) Are you qualified to give facials without a license? Where exactly can you advertise? What happens if you become ill? In my case I had no choice but to leave MK. Am I negative for saying my director didn’t reach out to at least show a small tiny bit of empathy or help?

  10. Juliet

    OMG AnonyMouse, NayMKWay & Cindylu’s posts could be all you need for a doggone scathing expose of not just MK but all mlms! I am so sorry you ladies suffered through these experiences, all of you who do, have or will. I can’t escape the mental image that keeps coming to mind of a pimp taking a young lady and turning her out, then having that girl find other young ladies to bring to the pimp to have the same done to them. Ghislaine Maxwell comes to mind which all makes me nauseated. Thank you for sharing your experiences and I am so glad that so many have popped that pink bubble.

    1. Char

      “Ghislaine Maxwell comes to mind which all makes me nauseated.”— One of the young victims recruited her friends, and Jeffrey paid her for it. Sound familiar?

      Your targets in MLM are usually your friends and family, and your goal is to profit off of them. Disgusting.

      Can you just hear the friend saying to the young victim, “This is an opportunity to make some extra money.” In fact, it was an “opportunity” to make money – just like MLM is. Opportunities come in all forms, but our brains don’t always consider the negative connotation.

      MLM is an opportunity to scam others for profit. Only the best liars become profitable and rise to the top.

    2. NayMKWay

      Thanks much for the shout out, Juliet!

      Just for the record, I was never in Mary Kay or any other MLM; I’m just a guy lending what support I can to sites like this one that oppose the fraud.

      I used to think MLM was just an alternate way of doing business—paying (via commissions) for word-of-mouth advertising rather than for media advertising. It all sounds fine on the surface.

      Then a close friend of mine, along with several of his family members, jumped into Visalis (weight-loss shakes and supplements MLM) with both feet. I attended a sales meeting he hosted at his home. (Met his upline; they were nice enough people, and no one tried to recruit me, or anything.) Soon my friend was driving the “free” car (BMW, black) and had slimmed way down. I was really happy for him. But within months, the car was gone, the weight had come back, and no one wanted to even talk about Visalis anymore. I didn’t ask.

      Later, I learned (from that Visalis had been founded by some pretty shady characters, and had more or less imploded. That got me to thinking about and researching the older MLMs like Amway, Tupperware, Mary Kay, Avon, etc. Surely they haven’t been running scams all these years, have they? I was in for a rude awakening, I can tell you that.

      I stumbled upon this site (honest!) and also found Tracy’s sequenceinc fraud files site, where she exposes lots of other MLMs and their questionable practices. Wow, I thought to myself, there seem to be zero “good” MLM companies out there. Is it even possible to do MLM the “right” way?

      Applying simple logic, I soon realized that once you strip away the MLM negatives, what remains isn’t MLM anymore. Furthermore, the negatives are all rooted in the fundamental flaw of endless-chain recruiting. It saturates the market with sellers, to the point that there are few customers who aren’t members. The dropout rate is astronomical, so the entire business model is to continuously churn through new recruits, taking them in with false promises of riches while sucking them dry.

      So that’s why I’m here. I don’t have a personal axe to grind against Mary Kay; I’m just morally outraged that this scam industry exists at all.

      I didn’t mean for this comment to become my life’s story. I do go on, don’t I?

      1. Destiny Angel

        My SiL has a lot of middle-aged, middle-class female friends who dabble in various MLMs with funding from either The First Bank of Husband or the First Bank of Full-Time Job.

        She was reasonably good at gatekeeping them knowing how I was not some-one into MLMs. Sadly two managed to get my personal details, one was an oily hun who tried to sell me a Grief oil.

        The second was a Pure Romance hun who wanted to sell my story as a widow and pivot it to me selling in her downline as some kind of I-Story. My husband died but I now sell fake phalluses that fulfill what he doesn’t. Cos he’s dead.

        The PR hun was not happy about me rejecting her “most kindly offer” of employment. Especially as all of my SiL’s friends think I can open up the French part of Canada to them

        We have our own huns. Who are bilingual, sadly.

  11. NayMKWay

    I’m sorry you lost your husband, Destiny Angel. I’m really sorry you got targeted by that Pure Romance hun. It frosts me no end when these MLM huns want to exploit someone else’s hardship for their own gain.

    From what I’ve seen on Reddit’s r/AntiMLM sub, Pure Romance huns seem to lose all sense of propriety when they join. Or maybe they were always that way, and PR attracts those types. Whatever the case, they seem to be some of the pushiest huns. They also seem quick to take offense if you don’t support them, and accuse you of having hang-ups, or something. It’s weird.

    1. Destiny Angel

      Thank you. I found it moderately amusing but also sad for my husband’s brother . His brother had died but some of his wife’s friends were seeing dollar signs instead of some-one who had lost her husband of over 20 years and 3 teenaged children who were now fatherless.

      I emailed the PR hun a picture of her catalogue being shredded.

  12. Brainwashed no more

    They only see opportunities when others would show empathy. I was going through something difficult and told my Director I was in support groups for that. She suggested I use that to build my business. No empathy, just opportunity for her production.

    1. Destiny Angel

      Opportunities and life insurance payouts. And in my case a potentially virgin market. I could deliver so many helpless. victims .. er Francophone women who had never seen the light!

      Nah.. not interested!

  13. Mountaineer95

    I really wanted to offer some arguments against this Friday Funday hater, but I am truly worn out by trying to fight the Kaybots…it’s ALWAYS entry-level Kaybots, never high-level MK folks. Every Friday, we only hear from MK newbies. NEVER current Directors. Seriously, not EVER. And we do get tired of stating the same truths (yes, TRUTHS) over and over. I’m not giving up, I promise, I’m just tired. But as long as there are “new” women being roped in to MK, we must persevere. And there will always be new women roped into MK. So, we must always persevere. Having said that, I don’t offer any argument against this particular Kaybot activity; instead, I reiterate what I’ve said before which is that this site gives you all of the info you need to make an EDUCATED decision about your Mary Kay “business”. If you choose to ignore the info and instead give money to MK Corp, that’s your problem and your choice.

    1. Mountaineer95

      OMG Tracy, after I reread this I realized how bad it comes across…I’m not criticizing you in ANY way, I hope you know that…my gripes about the “quality” of the Friday Funk entires has to do with the quality of their beliefs, not with the quality of fodder you give to us. I hope that comes out right. XOXO!

      1. NayMKWay

        I can’t speak for Tracy, but I don’t think you came across badly at all, Mountaineer95. I read your criticisms as being directed to the letter writer(s), not to the publisher. After all, Tracy is just offering her platform to opposing views; she can’t help it if all the letters are repetitive.

        It’s interesting how nearly every writer claims to have studied this site, yet can think of nothing new to say. It’s almost as if they are lying about how much studying they really did, and are blissfully unaware they’re retreading the same worn out tire for the umpteenth time, isn’t it?

        I think I may have mixed a metaphor or two, there. I blame it on sleep deprivation.

        1. Kristen

          Absolutely. If the Friday Critics actually read through the site, they would find arguments against every single one of their objections. We merely reiterate what’s already been said. I think Tracy should enforce required readings of the 10 reasons not to do Mary Kay and make them pass a test before they can participate.

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