Not Going Back to Mary Kay

A story from a reader. She was reluctant when she signed up, but got turned off by the immediate demands that she borrow money and order inventory. They did not take no for an answer, and they turned her off for good.

I just wanted to share that I am SO happy I came across your site. A couple months ago I was sucked into signing up for Mary Kay. I was already work a full time job but was brought in by the thought of making some extra money. Well, to be honest it felt more like “forced” into. I’m a person who has a very hard time saying no especially when it comes to super pushy people. And let me tell you this lady was pushy.

Somehow I ended up with a contract in my hand signing it. It was like having this out of body experience and I was looking down at myself screaming “No! Don’t do this,” but I did and of course right away all hell breaks loose.

I get many calls and texts telling me I need to place my first order and blah blah blah. Ever after I tell her multiple times that I cannot afford it and that I will not open a credit card. Oh, but she can help me she says! Why don’t I ask a family member for a loan? Uh are you kidding me? Because you know “this is a business and you have to invest in a business.” 

This harassment goes on for weeks. Asking me if I’ve figured out a way to make my first order work and assuring me I can make all my money back. When I finally get fed up and just start ignoring her calls she has the lady who originally invited me to the MK party call me. At first I thought she was a very sweet person and wouldn’t be such a crazed Kaybot. But I was wrong.

At this point I’m just so stressed out. She bugs me and bugs me about making my first order and having my debut party. Even though I tell her how busy I am with working my 50+ hour a week job, and working on my photography. But you know, they don’t take no for an answer. Because “when a woman says no she’s really just saying you haven’t told me enough” insert eye roll.

Anyhow. A few more weeks and more hair loss later from the stress of having someone on my back constantly I finally just tell them through a lengthy text (because I genuinely fear she’ll put some kind of spell on me if I talk to her on the phone) that I’m done with trying Mary Kay. I’m just way too busy, this has all made me more stressed out, I do appreciate their help and everything, but I just can’t. (I wanted to be nice and not be mean, hoping that would be the end of it, but of course not.)

I get this long text back:

Please note I was not “freaking out” unless telling someone you’re just to busy to do this business is “freaking out.”

When I didn’t respond back to the text I get a phone call (from a different number, mind you, otherwise I definitely wouldn’t have answered) and I get cornered on the phone. I get asked lame questions like “Think back to when you signed up for Mary Kay. Wasn’t that exciting??” and things like “we’ve all been there. It’s okay it’s just about not giving up.” And so on and so forth. After I figured out I would never get off the phone with this lady unless I just hung up I told her, thanks. I’ll think about it some and hung up.

Now I still get occasional texts like “hey haven’t heard from you in awhile. We can still get your first order in and make your dreams come true!” Its like lady, I haven’t replied to any of your texts in like 3 weeks. Have you not gotten the hint? Maybe I should have someone tell her I died? I don’t know though she might come to my funeral and hit up my family members to buy some Mary Kay. “It’s what Sara would have wanted.” She’d say.

All that to say all I’ve gotten out if this experience is that these people are drinking the kook-aid and are legit insane. I did have a tiny brief thought that maybe I should give it another go a couple of days ago but then I found your site and it was reconfirmed that I definitely SHOULD NOT EVER return to the dark pit of Mary Kay. So THANK YOU.


    • Ha! The recruiter should just sell more makeup and then she can quit those extra jobs!

  1. Good grief, that’s not a text; that’s a novel. And of course it’s all about the shame: you’re not as strong as me, not as tenacious as me, not as capable as me. Ascribing your motivation to fear (come on, you chicken, bawk bawk bawk!) and saying that you’re “freaking out” to portray you as some flibbertigibbet who can’t think because you’re ruled by emotions. That’s a scummy debate tactic I’ve run into time and again in various places, especially directed at women. “You’re too emotional to have a serious opinion, therefore I don’t have to listen to what you say.”

    Your recruiter can go suck a used mascara wand.

  2. “Because “when a woman says no she’s really just saying you haven’t told me enough””

    And this right here, my friends, is how you get two years into this insanity and find yourself in an abusive relationship. BECAUSE YOU NO LONGER TRUST YOUR OWN ABILITY TO SAY NO!

    Well, done, OP, in seeing the light and getting out so quickly!

    • I had to learn HOW to say no. When I say no, I mean it. There is no “you haven’t told me enough.” It took me a long time to realize how wrong that statement really is.

      • That’s what worries me. This messaging is toxic enough for adults and for people who HAVE learned to say no at some point in their lives. Can you imagine the impact this is having on these women’s kids? They grow up watching their moms steamroll everyone around them, and the kids themselves are steamrolled. My heart breaks for them.

  3. Cant they see how off putting this desperation is ? The begging doesn’t seem to show she’s successful at her own Mary Kay career.

  4. Also I wonder how the recruiter would have responded if OP asked HER to loan her money for her inventory order.

    • Good one ParsonsGreen. The same applies to OP’stime. Consider this:

      “Before I spend a penny more on Mary Kay, I’d like to tag along to a couple of your facial parties, strictly as an observer, not as a participant and not as a helper. Just give me the address and I will meet you there. Tell them I am a trainee. I won’t be contacting my friends or hosting a party of my own until I’ve seen you in action a few times!”

      When the recruiter tells OP of upcoming parties, OP should decline every time. “Sorry, I can’t make it at that time, I have a prior commitment. Please keep me in mind for the next one!” If she asks about the commitment, “Nothing related to Mary Kay, not to worry!” If she presses the issue, “I am not available at that time. Please keep me in mind for the next one. Thanks!” Stay upbeat! By putting the burden on the recruiter to set up the parties and inviting OP along, she will quickly realize that OP is not worth the effort. Note: OP will also get to see how infrequently her recruiter is actually working a party!

      If the recruiter communicates in any way prior to this, OP should simply reply with “No more Mary Kay talk until I’ve seen you in action at few parties. Thanks!” If the recruiter says, “When can you attend a party?” Simple reply with, “No need to plan around me. Just keep letting me know when they are, and I will attend one when I am able.”

      DO NOT under any circumstances agree to host a party. If asked, OP should insist again she won’t discuss Mary Kay with the recruiter until she’s seen her in action. That recruiter will eventually give up on OP out of frustration.

      Remain firm but kind. Don’t agree to anything…let the recruiter do all the work. Most of all, let the recruiter invest her time, not OP’s!

      • Eh, I’m all in favor of just ghosting her, especially since the writer has trouble saying no to pushy people. Any communication she has with the recruiter, the recruiter is going to do anything she can to wear her down. Don’t even give her an opportunity to try.

        • Good point. I am just relishing the thought of wasting the time of the up-line, for a change. Done correctly, a small effort on the part of the recruit can put great time pressure on the up-line. They want to take time and money (with little or nothing in return) from a new recruit. Let’s turn that around.

          I have a dream that the public will learn how to waste the time of the recruiters, in kindness and respect, with minimal effort on the part of the recruit.

          Meanwhile, ghosting has its merits as well!

  5. Bringing it back to just signing up is pointless, you MUST BUY INVENTORY. Otherwise you are worthless until they need to place an order under your social.

  6. My reply: Will you make a commission off the order that you keep asking me to place? Will you make a bigger commission if I order more? Does your upline also make commission from my order? If I don’t resell the products I potentially buy, will you still make a commission on my order? If I don’t order inventory, you and your upline don’t make any commission, right? Does Mary Kay use the MLM system?

  7. I strongly recommend watching your consultant login order history because between now and June 30, they may end up making one on your behalf simply to make some qualification.

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