Mary Kay is such a simple business! All you have to do is work the numbers. If you do the activity, you’ll get the results.

They always forget to mention that you have to find the women first. They make it seem like women are just going to be beating down your door to have Mary Kay parties. On the contrary, you’re going to be scrounging to find new women who want to have the parties. But there are never really any ideas (that work) to help you consistently generate new leads.

Nonetheless, NSD Kristin Sharpe says all you have to do is find your “magic number.” Tell her how much money you want to make each month, and her little worksheet will tell you how many leads you need to get each month. (Good luck figuring out how to get the leads!)

The numbers here are sobering if you take the time to look. Let’s say I need to make $2,000 per month. That’s not enough to support myself, but that would probably be considered decent money from a second job. To make this, I have to sell $5,000 retail each month. (But remember, this would be if I sold everything at full price and didn’t give away any products. That’s unrealistic, but we’ll set aside that issue for now.)

Then you have to calculate your per face average at your parties. One deceitful national sales director suggests you’ll sell an average of $50 per face at a party. I think that’s too high, but let’s give her the benefit of the doubt and run with it. At $60 per face, you need to see 83 faces per month to hit your sales goal. If there are 3 women at a party, you’d need 28 parties a month to get to the sales goal.

Kristin says 50% of the parties that are booked will actually hold. I think that’s on the high side too, but we’ll go with it. You’ll need to book 56 parties a month to hit your sales goal. If one out of five women you speak to will book a party, that means you need to talk to 280 women a month.

So every week, you’re going to have to contact 70 new women in order to (hopefully) make $2,000 a month (or $500 per week) at your part-time job. That’s a lot of leads you need. Tell me again where these will come from?

Is it any wonder that it is next to impossible to build a retail business with Mary Kay?


  1. “If one out of five women you speak to will book a party…”

    That may be true for F+F, but for total strangers it is much, much lower. Once you have approached everyone you know, it’s on to strangers. I believe cold-call stats are less than 2%, meaning less than one out of 50 strangers is likely to respond to a sales pitch, pushing your contact rate to over 2800/month, nearly 100 per day.

    Get busy!

  2. “NSD Kristin Sharpe says all you have to do is find your ‘magic number.'”

    Wasn’t Kristen’s mom a Senior NSD? Maybe that was her “magic.”

    • It truly boggles my mind how often Mary Kay pushes aside the nepotism factor, and everyone simply says “if they can create a national area, why can’t you?”

  3. Yeah, no. This is unsustainable and unrealistic. Magic doesn’t make for a sound business foundation, Kristen.

  4. This might have worked in the 1960’s when there were far fewer MK consultants, but nowadays, the MLM hun is everywhere. Nobody wants to discuss anything with them and certainly not a party. Facebook groups have rules against MLM pitching. The world is on to these tactics. And as Data Junkie mentioned, if you are using your friends and family sales to predict future sales, you will be sorely disappointed.

    Tracy, out of curiosity, what is the average length of time that a consultant stays in the company? I know that they usually drop out after one year, but I wonder if most make it past the one year mark, which is why the company will no longer buy back products after that point. For me, it was six months.

    • RE the produce buy-back: They are not doing it out of the goodness of their heart. MK Corp is REQUIRED by Texas law to buy back products sold within the last rolling year.

      And you were lied to by your director – it’s not just the first year’s orders, it’s a rolling 12-month buyback.

  5. If there are 3 women at a party, you’d need 28 parties a month to get to the sales goal.

    but if you are only supposed to be having parties 8th to 20th, then it’s 28 parties in 12 days or nearly 3 a day.

  6. Tracy, can you do an article titled: “How Many Hours You Need”?

    Step 1: My faces goal is: 30 faces. My booking goal is: 15 parties to hold. My leads goal is: 10 leads.

    Step 2: get 30 faces, with a 2% success rate at warm chatting, means I need to speak to: 1,500 women. 1,500 women, at 5 minutes per woman, is………… 125 hours.

    Step 3: get 15 bookings (30 required since half cancel), at 10 minutes to set up, is 5 hours. The actual class takes 4 hours, including drive time, so………….. 60 hours.

    Step 4: get 10 leads , with a 15 minute conversation to interest them………… 2.5 hours

    Step 5: Pack and unpack for each facial/party: 30 minutes X 45 = 22.5 hours

    210 hours = $1,500 in profit.
    That’s $7.14 per hour.

    For me, I’d stop after the need to spend 125 hours stalking women in Target.

    I guestimated some of the numbers based on my personal experience. These hours are more than a full time job. They don’t include “team building” or “follow up”, nor do they include returns and exchanges, placing orders, wrapping up products, posting on social media, etc.

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