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

This Is a Mary Kay Recruiting Pitch

This story was left as a comment on my business blog, where I used to write about Mary Kay from time-to-time.

Ginny was badgered to join Mary Kay for three hours. Don’t let anyone tell you this is unusual or that the recruiter wasn’t doing it “the Mary Kay way.” THIS IS EXACTLY THE MARY KAY WAY. They actual teach you “no doesn’t mean no, it means not right now.” They teach something called “layering.” They teach you to keep at someone until you wear them down, but they don’t use those words because the truth of the process is offensive.

Check out how this recruiting bit went down for Ginny:

I reluctantly agreed after almost 3hrs of saying I did not want to join to do Mary Kay, I can’t sell anything. She did not listen to me or didn’t want to.

After constantly badgering and pressuring me I gave in and I asked her how much product I have to purchase monthly or whatever she said she couldn’t tell me until I sign-up first, so then I against my better judgement joined for the $30. She told me the inventory prices from high to low. Even the lowest price was to much for me to afford. She kept on and on.

I told her I can’t sell anything, she said yes you can I’ll help you. I kept hesitating. She wanted me to get that $600 package and I was like no. I explained to her I was a 66 yr old retired woman on social security with no money left after paying bills and how my credit was messed up and I had been working so hard for year to fix it. I even explained to her I was on medication and it sometimes affects my thoughts and memory she would not listen to me. She kept on and on about how she was going to help me sell Mary Kay.

She finally got me to agree on that $288.00 with no kit. I was fine about no kit. I didn’t want to but, I put it on my personal credit card. We talked about credit cards and I mentioned doesn’t Mary Kay have a credit card she said yes, you can apply for that. I said I would apply later, but she said I can apply for you now. I was like ahhhhh ok. She told me I was approved and how much, then she said now I can order one of the other packages. I said can I do it later but she said no you need products to sell to your customers and you can get free bonus products and she kept on and on about bonus products and jewelry. I don’t even care about jewelry.

But after pressuring me for so long I broke down and told her to order the $600. She said let’s do $800. I said now you’re gonna go from 600 to $800. I said uhhhh ok, let’s do the $800. She started ordering, just purchasing items, so I said that’s a lot for $800. She goes we passed $800. I said how much is it, andshe said $1700 and something. I said that’s too much but she said I’ve already submitted it. I was like oooh. She’s telling me it’s Christmas time and I need products on hand for my customers to purchase. The total came to about 2,100.

I am a poor woman in need of food. I can’t be ordering all this Mary Kay products. I know some of you ladies love Mary Kay, that’s not a problem. The problem is that I don’t think Mary Kay is aware of the tactics they use to trap an unsuspecting victims. Now that I don’t want the products or any association she is being rude, obnoxious and acting like a bully. Telling me I have low self-esteem, no confidence in myself and a liar I know this month was some kind of goal setting for her, but to use and manipulate someone to get there is wrong.

Ginny, Mary Kay is well aware that these tactics are used. They don’t do anything about it because Mary Kay, Inc. sells billions of products a year and makes hundreds of millions of dollars of profits because of these tactics. I have messaged Ginny to be sure she knows about the product repurchase option so she can get most of her money back.


  1. Juliet

    I know in some states physically assaulting a person 65 or older carries harsher penalties than under 65. Is there anything like that for conning people perhaps. This person has a special place in hell.

    1. Gina Romano

      Has anyone heard of the former Director, Valerie Beck? She used a lot of manipulation on me and even stalked me when I started Mary Kay. She is a very phoney person and I could not get rid of her. At her insistence, I bought Mary Kay packages and went to meetings. I finally just backed away from the stress of Mary Kay that she put on me. She became obsessed with me and even started trying to look like me. Now, I am not trying to be harsh, but Valerie Beck is not an attractive woman. As time went on, she still stalked me until one night her brother came into my apartment and sexually assaulted me. Valerie continued to stalk me. It turns out Valerie’s father is in the Accardo family. I wrote Mary Kay about the incident, but they never responded. Please beware if you run into her. Also, Valerie Beck is extremely envious of women because she is a man who looks for victims.

  2. Brainwashednomore

    Hi Ginny, so sorry you went through this. Terrible what she put you through. You didn’t deserve the con game called MK

    “Layering” looks like this… meet a woman and get her number. Call her within 2 days, a week later, 1 month later and months later. Or
    Meet a woman. Ask her for coffee. Tell her about the parties, the business. Maybe she’s not interested in the business but wants to hold a party. Book and hold that class. Then, afterwards, show the hostess how much you sold and how easy it was. She may not want to join so invite her to an event where she could be the guest. She can get a makeover. Then, your director can sign her on as a recruit. Then, have another meeting and tell her you you want to discuss options to start your business. Start from the top down in terms of packages… you can see what “layering” means.

    The second idea I want to share is that this woman was recruited after she said she had no money. I’m sure that became her reason she had to do MK.

    I think women are taught they can’t say no and to people please. She felt badly saying no and she was there for 3 hours. She was worn down. And her weaknesses were used against her. No empathy or understanding. Just, let that be your reason to join and buy inventory. You can be going through cancer treatments and be told, look your best and you have more women to meet for MK.

    When I was recruited, it was layering also. Now I can see it. I went out with my friend for lunch and she talked about the business. It stuck in my head that I could do this for extra money. Then months later I joined, after holding multiple parties for her. Her director came to my grand opening and showed me the inventory options. Looking back, she was pushy but there was all this layering. I had a few parties, had friends over and had fun playing with makeup. And, it was a friend who was doing this. So, I trusted her. But lots of lies. This MK came between us. I haven’t heard from her since I returned my inventory.

  3. Char

    I hope paying the return shipping isn’t stopping her from returning the lot.

    Tracy, if you offer/offered to help her, I will Venmo you my contribution. I’m sure I won’t be the only one. Maybe we can even make up the 10% loss?

    And after all is said and done, can we please name her recruiter? And report her for “crimes against the elderly”?

  4. AnonyMouse

    That’s just gross. This consultant needs to be reported. To the FTC or SOMETHING. Because Corporate (top of the mornin’ to ya, Corporate) won’t do anything about it.

  5. Peggy Hicks

    This absolutely makes my blood boil!!! According to the following definition, Ginny is the victim of elder abuse:

    “Financial exploitation: Also known as financial abuse, this type of mistreatment can involve scams, fraud, coercion, theft, or improper use of a senior’s money, property, or other valuable resources. It affects about 1 in 18 cognitively healthy, non-institutionalized seniors every year. However, the prevalence rate among all seniors may be much higher than that. Essentially, financial exploitation of an elderly person is any intentional act in which a perpetrator improperly reaps financial benefits at the expense of a victim’s livelihood or well-being. Perpetrators often get their victims to trust them by using deception or providing offers of help that are based on false pretenses. They also may use scare tactics or make wildly overstated claims in order to get seniors to give them money or hand over control of their assets. Many scams involve telemarketing, but most financial abuse is carried out by people that seniors already know and trust, such as family members and service professionals.“

    Furthermore, due to the amount of money ($2,100.00) Ginny was coerced into spending by the MK consultant or director, this could very well be felonious elder financial abuse which should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. It would be nice to know who did this to Ginny because this individual needs to be exposed and/or the fear of God put into her for victimizing an elderly woman. Indeed there’s undoubtedly a hotter place in hell for anyone who does this to people, & I hope we’re able to find out who did this. This is BEYOND UNCONSCIONABLE & I’m MAD AS H***!!!

    1. Lazy Gardens

      You nailed it … “coercion and improper use of a senior’s money, property, or other valuable resources.” Definitely needs reporting to that state’s AG for it.

  6. Cat Ballou

    Ugh. I feel so bad for this woman. Seriously, do we need any more proof that a consultant’s MK “business” is NOT about making money selling the product? This recruiter doesn’t care that this woman isn’t a sales person (many people aren’t) and isn’t interested in selling anything.

    If this recruiter was trying to build a team of women who were actively making money selling the product, why would she spend any time, let alone, 3 hours, trying to convince someone who is unenthusiastic to join MK? If you really could make good money selling MK products, it wouldn’t be difficult to recruit.

    But this recruiter knows that most new consultants will fail in their attempts to sell the product. So she front-loads them with inventory that she knows they probably won’t sell, and moves on to the next victim. I really hope that this woman is able to return her products and recoup at least some of her money.


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