How to Successfully Sell Mary Kay

by Lynda Moultry Belcher; Updated September 26, 2017

Mary Kay is a large cosmetic and skin care conglomerate that offers budding entrepreneurs a chance to grow their own small franchise operation. Working under the umbrella of the larger company, you start with the company by becoming a sales consultant, selling Mary Kay products in your own community. This allows you to build key business relations to keep your clientele growing. In order to be successful at selling Mary Kay, there some key tips to keep in mind.

Step 1

Purchase a starter kit. This not only contains information about the sales consultant position, but a few products as well for you to try. However, according to the eBay guide "Being a Mary Kay Consultant: 3 Things You Need To Know," after you receive the starter kit, you may be encouraged to purchase an initial cache of inventory. This initial investment can run you up $3,600 to start. The company says that if you determine you no longer want to be a sales consultant, it will refund up to 90 percent of the cost for it, states the guide. However, it is important to be prepared -- if you are willing -- to make a monetary investment and quickly build a client base as you get started, so you aren't surprised down the line.

Step 2

Learn as much as you can about the Mary Kay products. You may find it a challenge to sell a group of products that you don't know much about. Try out each one for yourself and note results. Read reviews on the products, and solicit customer feedback from other reps. Use this information to learn what you can about the company's more successful products and the effectiveness of each.

Step 3

Set monthly goals. Without any kind of goal in mind, you're just spinning your wheels trying to sell. If you have a goal in mind, you will feel more encouraged to try to reach it. Write it down or post it somewhere prominent where you can see it each day. Be realistic, depending on whether you are just starting with Mary Kay or if you already have an established clientele to rely on to reach your goals. You also need to work with your team to establish team goals as well, since the success of the team determines how well you do financially that month.

Step 4

Recruit other sales consultants to work underneath you. In order to be successful with the Mary Kay organization and move up the corporate ladder, you need to build a team. You must recruit other sales consultants and help propel them to success, so that the entire group can advance. This is because your success with the company is dependent on the wholesale order you place and not each sale made to a consumer, states the "Being a Mary Kay Consultant: 3 Things You Need To Know" guide. Each person you recruit is encouraged to then recruit more people, so that you build a bigger team that places bigger orders. To become a full-fledged sales director, you must recruit at least 30 other people to work under you.

Step 5

Pamper your most loyal customers. Customers like to know they are appreciated, so take care of those that stick with you. When Mary Kay products are on sale or there is a new product debuting, share it with your most loyal customers before anyone else. Despite the fact that they already work with you, throw a complimentary facial or makeover their way occasionally just to show your appreciation.

Step 6

Reach out to more than just family or friends. Yes, this may be the group that is among your first and most loyal clients. However, over time, they may become more complacent about placing orders. You have to get outside of your comfort zone to be successful in selling Mary Kay. Host parties where you provide makeovers, and make sure the guest list doesn't include any of your current clients.

Step 7

Set up a Mary Kay personal website. The ability for people to find you online not only makes your business look more reputable, but it also provides key information for clients, including ways to contact you. The company will provide you with a customizable template, on which you can include specific information about your Mary Kay business. This provides yet another avenue for you to sell, contributing to your overall success.

Step 8

Be creative in your marketing. Seek out women's expos where you can set up a booth and sell your Mary Kay products. Become a regular at community events, where you can pass out collateral for Mary Kay products and your contact information, in particular. Invite other Mary Kay reps to band together for a mega-party, held at a large venue, where you can each sell products and get new customers on board. The more creative you are in your outreach, the more successful you will be at selling Mary Kay.


  • Consider online sales carefully. Mary Kay consultants are prohibited, for example, from re-selling items on eBay. In fact, this information is outlined in the agreement, and consultants found to be selling in this capacity may be in violation of their contract (ramifications are dealt with on an individual basis).


  • Be wary of sales consultants that pressure you to purchase tons of inventory when you start working under them. Purchase what you can afford, or work with what you've got in the starter kit. Don't overextend yourself financially or take out loans to spend thousands on initial products. Customers who purchase Mary Kay understand the ordering process and are generally willing to wait.

    Read the sales consultant agreement carefully when you sign on to sell Mary Kay. Make sure you are able and willing to work within the confines of the team structure, as the only way that you generate the most cash is when your team sells enough product, regardless of whether you've personally sold a ton on your own.

About the Author

Lynda Moultry Belcher is a writer, editor and public relations professional. She worked for a daily newspaper for 10 years and has been a freelance writer for more than 15 years. She has contributed to Divorce360 and Revolution Health Group, among other publications. She is also the author of "101 Plus-Size Women's Clothing Tips" and writes "Style At Any Size," a bi-weekly newspaper column.