Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Mary Kay vs Avon...and why I chose MK

I have worked in many different sales positions in my working years and I have sold all different kinds of products with different techniques, so when I started to look for a small from home business that I could start and manage I once again looked to sales. I researched a lot of different from home sales opportunities and weighed all the pros and cons of each. There were two that stood out amongst the rest: Mary Kay and Avon. Once I began to delve further into each company I am came to realize that each has its own particular set of pros and cons while being trustworthy and valuable companies. Here is what I discovered.

Pros -
1. There is only a $10 start up fee.
2. Catalogs offer wide variety of products.
3. New campaigns every two weeks.
4. Brand recognition.
5. Merchandise reasonable if not cheaply priced.
6. No territories.
7. Seasonal and children's products.

Cons -
1. $10 initial start up fee does not include your start up basics such as catalogs and demos, those must be purchase separately.
2. Market saturation. In my local area there are hundreds of men and women selling Avon.
3. Campaigns changing every two weeks requires you to constantly buy new catalogs.
4. Demos must be purchased at cost and is recommended you purchase a demo every campaign but not required.
5. Required sales goals. Avon requires you to meet a certain quarterly goal or they will revoke your right to sell their products.
6. Avon does not provide you with your own personal website for online direct sales for your clients.
7. Customers must often purchase a product before seeing it or trying it.

Pros -
1. $100 Start up cost includes Starter Kit valued at over $400 and includes everything you need to start your Mary Kay business.
2. No territories.
3. New campaigns every three months.
4. Brand recognition.
5. Department store quality for below department store price.
6. Brand loyalty.
7. Fantastic employee incentive program. (Everyone has seen a Mary Kay Pink Cadillac!)
8. Great support system with other Mary Kay consultants and Mary Kay Corporate.
9. Mary Kay belief system is God, Family, Job.
10. Try it before you buy it!

Cons -
1. Slightly higher prices than some Avon products.
2. Some market saturation. While there are many Mary Kay consultants most areas have a large untapped market of potential clients.
3. Recommended form of marketing is hosting Mary Kay parties or set appointments to have others host the parties. It is not required and they do offer other forms of marketing this happens to be the main strategy they provide.
4. Recommended that you purchase the free sample sized gifts (these are rather inexpensive but it can be considered a draw back)
5. Initial investment is $100.
6. More focused and limited inventory.

Why I chose Mary Kay

In the past I have purchased both Mary Kay and Avon products and enjoyed them both. If truth be told though I have always enjoyed the experience I get with my Mary Kay Consultant, she is always full of the latest trends in make-up and skin care. She takes the time to know me and my skin so she can best meet my needs and always presents me with products I love! I have come to love and rely on some of their best products and frankly couldn't live without them now. But it was more than just that I love what Mary Kay stands for compassion, beauty inside and out, and faith.

As a Mary Kay Consultant I hope that I can make every woman I meet feel more beautiful and more confident about herself. I want to uplift women while providing them the products and services they need, and to give them the latest trends and tips in the make-up world.

I hope that anyone who is trying to decide which company is right for them will find this helpful. Both companies have a lot to offer so research for yourself and don't buy into all the hype you read on some of the forums, there are people who have bad experiences but everyone who considering any self-employment opportunity must understand that whether you succeed or not completely depends on you so keep that in mind as you read.

I also welcome anyone who has experience with either company to come and share the honest truth about both, we want the good, the bad, and the beautiful.

Remember to comment!


  1. You asked for us to read and to comment. So, as I get ready for my job, you know that actually gives me a steady paycheck and time off, I figured why not? May as well return the favor you so kindly left!

    I'll be honest, I won't be bothered to read the whole entry you wrote here. You may have been courteous enough to have done that, but you caught me on a bad day. I'm not worried about being courteous. But I will be bothered to say that, as you have difficulties finding people who will buy (I know you mentioned selling insurance but let's be realistic: people need insurance more than they need lipstick), and as you start seeing the cult style brainwashing, the expenditures, the pressure, and all of that, you'll wonder. And then, once it comes tax time, and you receive your schedule C, don't be surprised by the minimal income.

    I would wish you good luck, but that implies wishing success. I wish you rather, a swift realization, and a quick closing of this chapter on your life. I hope that you remain relatively unscathed by circumstance, and that when it comes time to move on, you will be able to gracefully, and be able to salvage as much dignity, integrity, and money as you can.

  2. Kate,

    I'm researching the comparisons as far as pros and cons of both companies and I thought you did an outstanding job of explaining them both. I knew there was a reason I never chose to sign up with Avon but now I know and am glad I didn't. I did, however, sign up with Mary Kay in 2003 and love everything about it. I'm what you call a hobby consultant as I don't keep an inventory and only order what my customers want as they request it. I will always buy anything they want to try because of the customer guarantee. I don't do the skin care classes anymore and never did like doing them but they are a valuable opportunity for customers to try the products. There are always the people who don't like this line of business and there's nothing you can do about it except smile, be gracious and thank them for their comments and move on. And to the lady above...I hate to tell you this but many women don't leave home without their lipstick so it is a necessity in some cases. Both Mary Kay and Avon provide options for people to choose from. My director is close to earning the Cadillac and is on the Queens Court of Sharing which is an honor because it shows her dedication to the company, products and herself. She believes in all of these things enough to promote the company and invite others to give it a try.

    I wish you all the best in your journey and career with Mary Kay. You will always get whatever support you want from your unit and other consultants!

  3. I think both companies are good. It just depends on what you want income wise, and what you enjoy selling.I love Mary Kay mascara. I buy from my consultant the Miracle Set, Firming Eye Cream, and some cosmetics. I only buy as needed, and she is not pushy.I enjoy that. Are you still a consultant?

  4. I think both companies are good. It just depends on what you want income wise, and what you enjoy selling.I love Mary Kay mascara. I buy from my consultant the Miracle Set, Firming Eye Cream, and some cosmetics. I only buy as needed, and she is not pushy.I enjoy that. Are you still a consultant?