Making money from home is not a new concept at all. Beauty by Mary Kay has been working with this mission for women since 1960s.

If you haven’t heard about Mary Kay, it is one of the oldest MLM (Multi-Leverage Marketing) company existing today. However, many people today are still confused about the legitimacy of this company.

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So, welcome to today’s review: 

Is Mary Kay A Scam? Or A MLM’s Grandmother Legacy

In this post, we will be going to make a thorough review of Mary Kay and answer the common questions that people have.

So, if you are interested to make money from home and wanting to know if Mary Kay is the best home business for you, then this post is perfect for you.

First of all, I must congratulate you on doing your research first before diving into any opportunity, as this how you can avoid scams and bad programs.

That having said, there are thousands, hundreds and one way to make money online and onsite. MLM is one of the many marketing concepts you can choose from.

But what to expect with an MLM business concept? Let’s move on to the concept of MLM as it’s the business model of Mary Kay.


12 Pros and Cons of MLM concept

MLM or Multi-Leverage Marketing is also known as Network Marketing.


  • Good a way to share a product or service that people are truly passionate about.
  • An easy way to start a business opportunity.
  • It provides people with flexible working hours.
  • A chance to leverage income through network marketing.
  • The wheel doesn’t have to be re-invented to make money.
  • Mentorship is often a key component of the network marketing experience.


  • Most people don’t get rich through network marketing.
  • Most network marketing sales are face-to-face.  ( Only 6% occurs on the internet)
  • It takes time to grow.
  • There is a lot of face-to-face rejection involved.  (The conversion rate is only 1%)
  • There are many network marketing scams.
  • Sponsors aren’t always good mentors.

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Mary Kay Review Summary

Product Name:  Mary Kay

Founder: Mary Kay Ash and Richard Rogers

Product Type:  Cosmetics, Skin Care Products, MLM, Network Marketing.

Price:  $100 for Starter Kit + $225 worth of product purchase every 3 months

Best For:  Women who want to start their own business by selling this easily recognizable brand.

Summary:  Mary Kay was founded back in 1963 and it still operates today. However, even though this company is very popular and well-recognized, I personally can not recommend this company as a home business.

First and foremost, just like any other MLM companies, selling products with this concept involves a lot of face-to-face rejections (conversion rate is only 1% according to my research).

Secondly, the income potential is really low from both profits and commissions (see computations below).

Third, the market saturation for distributors is high (see sample research below).

Lastly, storage problems (monthly purchase) can chew into your profits. Only retail stores normally face inventory storage problems.

Rating: 50/100

Recommended:  No

What & Who is Mary Kay?

In the 1960s, the majority of women have no jobs or have to stay home to take care of their children and household. That is where Mary Kay Ash founded this company in order to create a possibility for women to earn money from home by selling beauty products.

On September 13, 1963, Beauty by Mary was launched with only $5,000 as her capital back then. And the company has been operating successfully since then. Today they call it Mary Kay, Inc.

Since Mary Kay is the most pioneer in this marketing concept, this made her as the grandmother of all MLM businesses.

Mary Kay was not only a founder of MLM companies. She achieved a lot of recognition during her time such as an Award of Hall of Fame in the 1970s.

In the 1980s, she wrote her influential book which was a best-seller in the Wall Street Journal, became one of the 25 most influential women in the USA and featured in Great American Entrepreneur.

In the 1990s, she established the Mary Kay Foundation, which provides funding for cancer research and to prevent domestic violence.

In the 2000s, Baylor University names Mary Kay Ash the “Greatest Female Entrepreneur in American History” in an academic study.

In 2018, Mary Kay Ash’s legacy of empowering women through entrepreneurship lives on in nearly 40 countries around the world.

Mary Kay died in 2001, but her legacy in entrepreneurial empowerment continuously lives on.

Mary Kay’s son, Richard R. Rogers, now runs the company as Executive Chairman.


Mary Kay’s Product Line

Mary Kay has an undeniably great product line and that makes this company successful.

The company has 200+ products in a wide range of Women’s Cosmetic Necessities.

Product categories for Women include:

  • Makeup
  • Skin Care
  • Fragrance

Men’s product categories:

  • Men’s Colognes
  • Shaving Foams, Creams and After Shave Lotions
  • Sun Screens
  • Facial Soap

Some of Their Best-Seller Products: Check Mary Kay’s catalog here.

Getting Started With Mary Kay

To get started with Mary Kay, you need the “The $100 Mary Kay Starter Kit”. See image below.

The Starter Kit includes a few products, DVDs, brochures and catalogs, and access to your personal website.

Once you’re done signing up, you will become a consultant and start taking orders from your customers. As a consultant, you will be entitled to purchase Mary Kay’s products at 50% off the retail value.

However, to remain an active consultant, you need to make a purchase of $225 wholesale-priced worth of products every three months.

How To Make Money With Mary Kay? 

As mentioned earlier, Mary Kay is an MLM business of passion. The business opportunity provides its customers/consultants to earn money in two ways.

  •  By selling their products to the customers and earning retail commissions
  •  By recruiting people

And like any other MLMs, Mary Kay relies on two major types of marketing:

  • Word-of-mouth or face-to-face marketing
  •  Social media marketing

Probably that’s how you may have heard of Mary Kay in the first place. However, given the fact of how established and popular Mary Kay is, you were probably exposed to the brand in more ways than one.

Ways to Make Money with Mary Kay: 

  • Profits from direct sales:  You earn a 50% profit on each sale made through their wholesale pricing.
  • Team Orders Commissions: Their commission rate is at 4% on your downlines’ sales and it can increase as your rank increases.
  • Team Building Bonuses: These are set dollar amounts, from $50 to $3,000, depending on the leadership level and some performance requirements.

See the video below for more information about making money with Mary Kay.

Tired of MLMs? 

3 Major Things I Don’t Like About Mary Kay Business 

1. Low Income Potential 

The company does not provide an income disclosure or earnings representation for the US consultants, which is an important thing for anyone who is planning to become a consultant.

However, there is a provided earning representation for Canadian Employees. See the image below:

Let’s look closer…

As of 2017, there are more than 32,400 members of their independent sales force of Mary Kay Cosmetics Ltd. Canada.

  • 3,818 members who have been part of the company for at least a year and earning commissions. Out of that 3,818, only 47.4% earned commissions in excess of $100.