A Mary Kay Victim Spared

This one hit my inbox this month, and emails like this always make me happy. I never had a goal of “taking Mary Kay down.” My goal was always providing information so that anyone who decided to research MK could find out the truth.

Nearly 18 years later, we’re still saving would be MK victims one at a time.

I hope this email finds you well. It’s been almost a decade, but I wanted to thank you for your website.

When I was 17, I “won” a free Mary Kay makeover. I went with a friend and I was so excited and bought almost $100 worth of Mary Kay products (and as a 17 year old that was a lot of money).

The lady invited me back for another “spa day” and of course I said yes. This time, however, she told me that I could be a consultant when I turned 18, which was only a few months away. She was touting the various MLM buzzwords like “financial freedom”, the promise of discounted Mary Kay products, and of course the free pink Cadillac car. Since I was a few months from high school graduation and college, I was open to the idea.

I’m not an idiot, however, so I went to google to look up an unbiased account of a Mary Kay distributor, and came across your website. I was shocked at what I found, and how so many stories started very similar to mine. I then decided I wasn’t going to be a distributor and blocked the Mary Kay lady’s number so she wouldn’t contact me again. I wanted to specifically thank you for your website, as it saved me from being a losing so much money at such a young age. I also reflected upon the things that the lady told me, that should have been giant red flags, and the cult like mentality that I was seeing even though I hadn’t even joined the company yet.

I am now a longtime poster and lurker on the r/antiMLM subreddit, and consume a lot of anti MLM content.

No need to respond, I just came across your website and thought about the time I came very close to joining Mary Kay and your website stopped me.



  1. Thank you, Tracy, for saving this girl and so many like her from me. I thought I was helping. I thought I was doing the right thing. Really, I was dragging these girls into debt and self destruction before they had a chance to get started with their lives.

    To be crystal clear, I’m not sure I was the one who tried to recruit OP. Her story is remarkable only in its universality. We all used the same scripts. We all targeted the same kind of woman. This could have been me or any of dozens of women who currently contribute to PT. Or it could have been someone still immersed in the Pink Fog. Likely, it was someone who has long since washed out of MK, who is still grappling with the harm she did to other women.

  2. The email writer didn’t just save money; she also a lot of time, stress, and repeated hits to her self esteem.

  3. Great post!
    The Ah-HA!! moment I had, after 20 years of MK, was realizing that “saving for a house” using MK as my tool to make money, was literally a nightmare. I couldn’t keep track of how much product I had on hand (thousands of dollars retail), what product it was, WHERE it was, did I actually have that product?? Or did I have that shade?? Nope, sure didn’t, I’d need to order it for her, but I had everything else on hand except she lives in a different city so should I direct ship ALL of the order to her or ship some of it personally and then direct ship what I didn’t have?? How many orders did I need to process? Oh a few, and would I charge them shipping? Nope, they spent over $50 retail, except I gave a discount because it was her birthday month. And the thought train goes on and on. Ask any MK “leadership” about it … “You need to see more faces!… You need to get help at home!! Have your kids help you prep the sales! You need to __ ” here’s the hundred things wrong with ME that is causing ME to stop MK from working..
    Oh WAIT, it’s not me. It’s the “system”!

    I can go work 15 hours per week at an extra part time job and make a few extra hundred dollars per month. I don’t have to do any fancy brain work. Just show up, clock in, do the thing, leave. “Oh but you’re helping them build their dreams…” lololol and on and on the gaslighting goes.

    If you stayed this long to read my rambling, thanks!! And OP – I’m SO HAPPY that you didn’t get sucked in by one of us!! <3

  4. People wonder why we do this … and this is why. Keeping one young woman out of financial problems, and maybe her friends and family too, is worth it.

  5. When my recruiter encouraged me to lie to my husband about the money – I was out. Seems odd that this “Christian Company “ encourages lying.


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