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

Helping Women One By One

Pink Truth has been around a long time. We started on July 4, 2006, first as “Mary Kay Sucks” and then becoming Pink Truth a few months later. That’s over FIFTEEN years ago. And at the time, Mary Kay Inc., the NSDs, and the sales directors all lost their collective minds. How dare we expose their scam.

It was fun for them to call us liars… while lying about us. But corporate had a pretty good strategy: wait it out. It was a good strategy because nearly all of the sites criticizing MLMs went dark after a several months. People were afraid of being sued, or they just got tired of the daily grind of keeping a site active. So Mary Kay Inc. assumed Pink Truth would meet the same fate.

But we were reaching so many women that I couldn’t let the site go. At first we got a lot of traffic because it was shocking that someone was exposing the dirty tactics of MK. And there were Mary Kay supporters who would come and argue with us, creating a scene that attracted more visitors.

I assumed that over time, the interest would wane. Would you believe interest is just as strong today as it was in the first year? We’re getting over a million visitors a year to Pink Truth. I want to keep things going for all those people who are researching and learning.

As fun as that statistic is, it is the ability to help one woman at a time. Each time I get an email from someone whose eyes were opened to the MLM scam, it’s worth the hundreds of hours and thousands of dollars I’ve devoted to Pink Truth. Here’s one of the notes, and it’s women like this that encourage me to keep the site going…

I wanted to contact you to thank you personally for helping me find out how to cancel my Mary Kay business. There has been no help out there except for your site and it saved me a lot of time and trouble. I am a college student going into my sophomore year with hardly any money to pay for rent, and I was sucked into Mary Kay by my Christian sorority advisor. Once I started researching Mary Kay (after I already purchased the starter kit) I realized what I was actually getting myself into.

Thank God your website was there to explain everything before it was too late for me. I am truly thankful that you dedicated your time and effort to help spread awareness on this luxurious pyramid scheme. I can’t imagine what would have happened to me financially and emotionally. Again, thank you so much for giving clear instructions on how to quit Mary Kay. I am very grateful for all of the information you have provided to help me make a decision about this business.

10 Comments

  1. Pinkiu

    I had already dissolved my “business” with MK by the time I found Pink Truth. I was still under the delusion that the failure to thrive in MK, after years of trying to make it work by only selling product, was all my fault. I am grateful that I got to peek behind the MK curtain reading scripts used on me to see why I was led to believe this falsehood about myself. It wasn’t my fault.

    Had it not been for PT, I might still be supporting mlm resellers of product and perhaps would have joined another one. Now, I gladly pop in here and support those who are finding their way out.

    Thank you, Tracy.

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    1. TRACY

      I’m so glad you found us. Mary Kay continues to exist because they are able to convince women that their failure was their own fault. They can’t admit it’s the pyramid scheme system that causes it, or no one would ever sign up again!

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  2. Heather

    I am eternally grateful for Tracy and so many others here who thought how I did, who went through what I did, and who saw what I saw. I thought for the longest time that I was alone… the ONLY one who kept wondering if something was wrong. Was it MY fault that things were not working out like I had been promised? I did x, and y was supposed to happen. But it didn’t.

    I found this site not long before I stepped away, and I’m glad I did.

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  3. morningstar

    Met a director at a rural fair last summer. She launched into how much MK has changed since Ms. Brothers’ ran her con in Co. and how everything is easier due to automated electronic system. blah blah blah… I ordered full set of that natural stuff at about 150 bucks right there. Said ‘not sure if I should join up on MK again or pay your full price, what do you think?” Did not hear hide nor hair from her again. She could not con me….

  4. Juliet

    I came to Pink Truth from Etiquette Hell, where PT was mentioned in a post about not wanting to attend a friend’s sales party. I have been my own consumer counsel since I was 20 and didn’t understand anything about anything, therefore making me a prime mark for MLM. That didn’t happen only because when I have been approached with MLMs I either wanted the product or signed up as a client, but never caught on to the RECRUITING thing lol.

    But Dearest Tracy, and you really are Dearest, I know that it has been my obsessive reading of post after post and the Discussion board and so much material I have found on MK websites that led me to the breakthrough in lifelong therapy that actually made a phenomenal difference.

    My middle sister is a narcissist at best, and an absolute sociopath most realistically. I did not have a clue what it meant to be “gaslighted” till just the last two years or so. An integral part of my FINALLY catching on to gaslighting was understanding the MK streamlined gaslighting of consultants and directors. The wall is blatantly red, and the mk stance is “what wall?”. So it turns out that is what this sister has done to me and our other sister, all of our lives. We believed the lies because no one was there to tell us different, and fight as we might to rise above the abysmal self images we have had of ourselves, it just didn’t happen. THEN the gaslighting revelation was offered to me by my therapist AND IT ALL MADE SENSE.

    I realized it was seeing a third party, so to speak, practicing this cruel manipulation upon people that helped me come to understand what has been done to me that I could not identify and therefore couldn’t overcome. At 54, two years ago, I finally was able to break through that wall of lies, and help my also gaslighted sister to do so as well.

    So Tracy, whatever you might think about the scope of your influence, you are the butterfly in China fluttering your wings, and the tsunami striking across the world. I refer so many people to PT, and LOOK HOW YOU HAVE WORKED IN MY LIFE. A LIFETIME, truly a LIFETIME of therapy to finally receive absolute enlightenment through MARY KAY SUCKS lololololol.

    God Bless You, Tracy, and every person who comes to this site, regardless of belief systems that is mine and I truly do pray that each person be as fortunate as myself from finding this site.

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  5. Char

    I recently made a post about “who to believe”. A consultant suggested that recruits should believe predator consultants over PT strangers.

    Addressing lurkers, I pointed out that consultants giving advice are seeking to profit off of them, and we at PT give advice for free.

    Yes it is free to read and post on PT, but Tracy humbly commented that it’s not free for her to maintain the site. It COSTS her money. I’ll admit, PT just pops up M-F for me a reader and I get lazy, so I appreciated the detail in her post. I hope Tracy doesn’t mind me copying the comment to this main article:

    “And if we’re being technical… PT actually COSTS me money. Yes, I pay the cost of web hosting, IT consultants, attorneys, etc. related to Pink Truth because I want this information to be available to people. I don’t get anything in return. Yes, we have ads on the site. The money is used toward the cost of web hosting, and the balance is paid by me. I don’t “profit” off Pink Truth. But I still do it because it’s important to me.

    I’ve also spent thousands of hours dedicated to the site over the year. It’s a labor of love and I’m not complaining. Simply pointing out that I gain nothing by making this information available, and I do it at a personal cost. (In contrast to the MK ladies telling potential recruits about Mary Kay in an effort to profit off their product orders.)

    (Don’t feel sorry for me. Please don’t offer to send me money. I can easily afford this, and I don’t mind doing it.)”

    *****Thank you Tracy for your dedication to the cause.*****

    Reiterating the point, PT is a free resource (to us) to help people not get scammed by Mary Kay, or any MLM company. Conversely, the people condemning PT want your money; they make a commission off your involvement. And Mary Kay, the company, has made billions.

    Lurkers, think about who you want to believe, but more importantly, verify the facts. I’ll start you off:

    Mary Kay is 100% an MLM company, fact. If you’ve been told otherwise, that’s lie #1.

  6. Data Junkie

    FWIW: I am an active anti-MLM warrior, and I refer people to PT all the time. I also refer people to various articles on Tracy’s blog, where she has lots of helpful MLM stuff not related to Mary Kay. The power of PT is the MK knowledge base combined with the underlying humanity of the contributors. Instead of trying to explain to a prospective MK recruit why MLM is bad, I have full confidence PT will do the job better than I ever could.

    In addition to having very relevant and helpful content, I think the fact that Tracy makes sure PT has something new every weekday is what keeps people engaged. Even the re-posts are great, because Tracy seems to know what might be needed based on something in the MK or MLM news. And for most folks, the re-posts are new anyway!

    BTW: My guess is smart MK directors stay familiar with what is hot on PT so they can do damage control if they hear any rumblings in their ranks.

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  7. SAG

    I have to say Pink Truth came into my life a year after I quit Mary Kay. I was in this pyramid scheme from 2010 through 2014. I was convinced to sign up due to professional upheaval during that time. We all remember the 2008 financial crisis. Well, as a financial services professional at Bank of America, I was one of the many thousands who were laid off. In fact, I had to give up my apartment and move in with my mother. I was on my way to a temporary job in downtown Chicago, trying to figure out my next move. That’s when I was approached by a consultant. Please note, said consultant disappeared months later.

    I remember a family friend who was a consultant. My mother would buy Mary Kay products from this woman, so I figured why not. I wanted to run a business. Going to my first meeting they said all the same nonsense that’s repeated here. I actually believed Harvard Business School endorsed this company???!!! I also noticed they constantly dissed the Pink Truth website.

    It wasn’t until 2015 when I was web surfing that I came across Pink Truth. I had always had questions about certain aspects of Mary Kay Cosmetics. For instance, the whole stealth product launch. I remember ordering the entire collection of foundations. However, two weeks later they released new foundations!! I was left with obsolete product. From reading your blog over the years this is a constant underhanded tactic with this company: dropping products without proper notification despite knowing full well consultants would be ordering obsolete products.

    I remember regularly going to meetings where sales directors would brag about the amount of their commission checks. To think we were being played for fools. They never said when they received that amount. Again, from reading Pink Truth, the amounts could have been years ago. I also naively believed sales were tracked, but only for Directors. Again, from reading your blog, no sales are ever tracked!!

    Despite being hoodwinked by Mary Kay, I can say I did not go into debt. It made no sense for me to continually purchase product when I wasn’t selling any of it. I tried my hardest to sell these items. I also tried holding classes; it never worked. I wasted 4 years of my life.

    Keep up the good work. I am learning something new every time I visit your site. You have to continually get the word out. Due to COVID we are in challenging economic times. Many people have lost their jobs due to misguided policies of shutting down the economy. I believe people will be lured into this scheme out of a desperate necessity to generate income. Please continue get the word out.

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