Maybe an old friend got in touch with you recently about this "work from home opportunity". Or maybe you saw Beautycounter on your Facebook feed.
But chances are you've been wondering... is Beautycounter a scam?
I'll put you out of your misery now... Beautycounter is not a scam.
But is it the best opportunity for you to work from home?
This honest Beautycounter review, with videos, will expose the truth alongside the pros and cons of joining the company. That way you can make an informed decision if this is for you or not.
The overview and rankings
Founder: Gregg Renfrew in 2013 (started operation in 2016)
Website URL: beautycounter.com
Type: Personal care MLM
Products (Including Pricing): 60 out of 100
Success Stories: 10 out of 100
Price To Join MLM: $98 + Product pack ($132-$735)
$1,200 sales every 6 months (you need to pay for this if you don't sell it!) (40 out of 100)
What To Look For In An MLM:
Summary: Beautycounter is a cosmetics and personal care products based MLM company founded in 2013.
They provide safe and "toxic-free" ingredients in all of their products. However, they come with a hefty price tag.
Although there's not a "sales quota" to hit every month, you will need to sell $1,200 worth of products every 6 months to make any commission. So is this the right opportunity for you? Only you can decide...
Make Time Online Rating: 37 out of 100
What is Beautycounter?
Beautycounter is a personal care Multi-Level-Marketing company based in Santa Monica, California.
They produce "safe" skincare and makeup products whilst offering everyday people the opportunity to make money by selling these products and recruiting more people into the company.
The 3 minute video below explains more about the company...
Now, you're smart enough to know this is just a promotional Beautycounter video.
So you're probably still wondering...
Is Beautycounter a pyramid scheme?
Beautycounter is not an outright pyramid scheme because it's possible for their "consultants" to earn commission from selling their products.
Most MLM companies do have legit products or services.
So a better question to ask would be...
Is Beautycounter a "pyramid scheme in disguise"?
What is a pyramid scheme?
A company that promises payment to its members for recruiting more people into the company.
Technically pyramid schemes do not sell any products or services.
These are illegal in most countries because it's impossible for everyone to make money from the company as you can see in the diagram below...
So most MLM companies do sell legit products.
However, some MLM companies sell products just to make it seem like they are not a pyramid scheme. When in reality the only way distributors can make a good income ($1,000+ a month) is by recruiting more people into the company.
We'll dig into whether Beautycounter is a pyramid scheme in disguise later in this review. But for now, you can check out the short video below to see how to avoid these sneaky companies...
Success is hard to find with Beautycounter
In fact, success is hard to find in any MLM.
Did you know that between 73% and 99% of all MLM representatives lose money?
However, not every MLM company is equal and Beautycounter's income disclosure looks quite good at first glance with around 10% of "active consultants" earning $13,540+ a year (yeah believe it or not, that's good for MLM companies!)
But as you will find out later on, this actually isn't showing the full truth.
The fact is that you are required to sell $1,200 worth of products every 6 months to be considered "active".
Do you see what they've done?
If not, continue reading this Beautycounter MLM review and I will lay out the truth later.
But for now let's figure out...
Ready to make passive income online?
Hey, I'm Mike.
I created a passive income online within a year. I had no marketing skills or online experience when I started.
How does Beautycounter Work?
So Beautycounter produces "safe" makeup and personal care products.
But rather than needing physical shops or needing to spend loads of money on marketing every month, they work in a different way to many businesses.
They provide everyday people the opportunity to work from home by selling the products and earning a commission...
- Everyday people can work from home
- Beautycounter saves monthly expenses
It's starting to sound like a win-win, right?
Before you consider joining any MLM company it's important to figure out exactly what products they sell.
Ideally, you should try them yourself. If you like them then it will be much easier to sell.
Just think about the last great film you watched.
Did you have any issue recommending it to a friend?
So Beautycounter has a wide range of products under the following categories:
- Skin care - moisturisers, sunscreen, cleansers etc. ($17-$188)
- Makeup - foundation, powder, concealer etc. ($22-$150)
- Bath and body - Body balms, body scrub, body butter etc. ($15.30-$188)
- Counterman - exfoliating cleansers, shaving cream, toner pads for men etc. ($19-$188)
It's important to be aware that there are many other MLM companies that sell similar products such as:
So it's really important that you understand the selling points of the main products if you want to be successful at Beautycounter...
Beautycounter flagship product
To be honest it was actually quite hard to tell what the "main product" was for Beautycounter.
That's not a good sign as often MLM companies have a gimmicky product that is easier to sell because it's different to anything else out there.
Beautycounter seems to promote their Facial Oil quite a lot so let's dig into that a bit more.
Here are some selling points for you (if you intend on selling it):
After just two weeks of use*:
- 91% said skin looked brighter
- 94% agreed skin looked more glowing and radiant
- 97% said skin felt immediately hydrated
- 91% said skin looked revitalized and renewed
*Based on a 32-subject consumer perception study after two weeks of use.
But that has to be taken with a pinch of salt as the subjects could have been anyone and 32 people is hardly a thorough study!
Most ingredients are natural and safe and they have a huge list of 1,800+ banned ingredients, so at least you know they screen products well!
Check out the 1-minute video below to learn more...
How to make money with Beautycounter MLM
Right, let's get down to business!
This is probably the reason why you are reading this Beautycounter review so let's not hang about.
There are 2 ways you can make money as a Beautycounter consultant:
- Sell their products to earn a commission
- Recruit more people and get bonuses from sales they make
It's important to note that you don't make money from recruiting people, but rather you earn bonuses based on the sales they make.
This is another way that MLM companies avoid being called an outright pyramid scheme.
But in reality, anyone that earns good money from an MLM company will have recruited a lot of people. It's just important you're aware of this before joining!
How much does it cost to join Beautycounter MLM?
So it costs $98 to become a consultant and receive:
- A replicated website
- Access to your "backoffice"
- Training platform (educate you on the products and ingredients)
- 2 products
- 25% discount on products (this is also the commission you would earn if you sell anything at "retail price")
You would likely need to purchase a product pack (mainly to try some other products, but you could also sell some in person that way).
This costs between $132-$735 for a different range of products:
But the costs do NOT stop there amigo...
Beautycounter monthly cost
So Beautycounter claims there is no "monthly minimum" sales quota for you to hit. Again, "technically" this is true.
You need to sell $1,200 worth of products every 6 months!
So let's say you spent a load of time and effort selling $350 worth of products in 5 months.
You won't earn a penny of commission (you should get 25% of that) unless you sell $850 more!
So what do some consultants end up doing?...
Yep... buying the rest to make up for it!
Your total potential costs for your first year would therefore be:
- $1,200 x 2
1st year potential expenses before any other training = $2,633 - $3,233
This is nowhere near the cost of starting a regular bricks and mortar business, but it's certainly more than $98!
Obviously you'd hope you can sell some of this, but I'll tell you this for nothing...
Selling $1,200 of overpriced cosmetics in 6 months if you have no sales experience is NOT easy!
Beautycounter compensation plan
Usually MLM companies make their compensation plan harder to understand than solving a rubik's cube blindfolded.
However, Beautycounter is actually more simple than others. But it's still confusing if you've never looked at the terms PV, GV & % in your downline before.
There's only 4 ways they claim you can be paid:
- Retail commissions (25%)
- Personal sales bonus (5-10% if you sell $750+ a month)
- Override commissions (bonuses from your "downline" sales... see below screenshot)
- Frontline business builder (bonus for promotions in your downline)
I know that screenshot is probably a bit confusing if you've never looked at one of these before, but believe me it's much simpler than some MLM companies!
Let's make it even easier to understand though...
In reality, the only thing you can do to get paid is this:
- Sell products
- Recruit people and help them sell
Don't get worked up about the confusing terms and language when you're starting, it's not worth it!
If you really want to get your head around it a bit more you can watch this walkthrough from a "Beautycounter consultant" (the examples become super confusing so don't worry if this makes no sense!)...
You can also check out the full compensation plan here.
Is Beautycounter a scam?
No Beautycounter is not a scam!
They sell legit products and pay their consultants exactly like they say they will.
However, it still doesn't mean it's the right work from home opportunity for you.
Only you can decide that and the rest of this Beautycounter review will help you make an informed decision.
Common positive reviews
Here are some of the positive reviews we had from Trust Pilot about the job opportunity...
- "Fantastic products for both me and my man. Just got good stuff to say about beautycounter.com and their products, prices and support/staff."
Common negative reviews
And here are the common negative reviews...
- "I had about 20 fraudulent charges from their site. Someone apparently went on a shopping spree on their website with my card. I asked for the name of the person who used my card and they protected the thief and would not give out the information even though it was my card."
- "I had to create 2+ separate support tickets with the regular Support Team, who brushed me off saying I could still continue to purchase from their company without the free shipping membership. This is so incredibly rude, when there has been no fraud to start with. They also won't do any price adjustments for items that go on sale, even if they were purchased a day or two before."
Just to be fully transparent with you, I am not a distributor myself and I do not endorse Beautycounter in any way.
I have researched the website, testimonials and information on the Internet to get to the bottom of what this program genuinely does. This is because I have been burnt from programs just like this in the past and I want to prevent others from making the same mistakes. I
What I like about Beautycounter MLM
There are some things that I like about Beautycounter and think it makes it better than some other MLM companies out there...
- Pyramid Scheme – recruits members via a promise for payment from referring others to the service rather than providing a product
- Affiliate Marketing- Connecting a customer to a product they are looking for and receiving a commission for doing so
- Red Flag - A warning sign
#1 Good product reviews
Some people clearly love the products at Beautycounter!...
The above screenshot is directly from their website so of course the rating is high. But you can even see in other reviews elsewhere such as Consumer Affairs they have a lot of 5 star ratings.
This is a great sign that Beautycounter is not a scam.
#2 Safe ingredients used
This is 100% the main selling point for Beautycounter products...
They have a rigorous testing procedure to produce everything on their website and there are thousands of ingredients banned from what they use.
This is what will separate them from high street retailers.
#3 Simple(ish) compensation plan
As mentioned earlier their compensation plan is much easier to understand than other MLM companies.
Only having 4 ways to get paid makes it super simple to understand.
It's a pretty effective way to of making money too.
25% commissions is not bad for $50+ products!
What I don't like about Beautycounter MLM
So here are some of the hidden truths about Beautycounter.
It's not made clear before you join but I think it's super important to be aware of these things.
That way at least you will join the company with eyes wide open if you still like the sound of it.
#1 Expensive products
This is the BIG red flag for me.
Seriously just ask yourself...
Why would anyone choose to spend 100%+ on a very similar product?
Well, here is what I found about their products...
- Beautycounter facial oil = $102.99 per oz
- High rated Amazon "organic facial oil" = $2.02- $12.95 per oz
That means Beautycounter's facial oil is around 1,000%-5,000% more expensive than comparables.
Now, I'm no beauty expert so I can't say for certain how much better or different Beautycounter's products are.
But here's something I found when I was researching it...
This is not the only person who says things like this.
It's quite common for MLM companies to have this "hype" about their products when, in reality, they are very similar to other things you can find out there.
I'm not denying it's better than standard items you can find on the high street.
But I can guarantee you can find "safe" and "natural" products for a fraction of the price than you can at Beautycounter.
#2 Hidden monthly costs
This one's a biggie for me too.
They constantly claim there is no "monthly sales quota" to hit in all of their sales videos and compensation plan.
But look at the small print in the comp plan...
It may not be a monthly quota, but a 6 monthly quota is basically the same thing!
Just imagine you spend loads of time promoting the products, hosting "parties" and speaking to everyone you come across to sell $1,200 products.
Then after 6 months you're back to square one!
It's not really passive income.
The only way you make any "residual income" is if you recruit a lot of people into the company.
#3 Is Beautycounter a pyramid scheme in disguise?
Let's talk about the elephant in the room.
Look, Beautycounter is NOT a pyramid scheme. I hope I've made that clear already!
But if you have any interest in working from home, I'm going to presume you'd like to make more than $1,000 a month.
If you do not recruit anyone that means you need to sell $4,000 of facial oil and makeup every month.
Seriously think about that...
You need to sell around 58 bottles of facial oil or 95 foundations... EVERY MONTH!
The reality is that unless you have a website that you control (not their crappy replica website) and "drive free traffic" to it through Google and social media channels, this is basically impossible.
As you can see from the opinion on a review site above, that means you are really only rewarded financially if you recruit more people into the company.
It's not a pyramid scheme... but Beautycounter fits mighty close to a "pyramid scheme in disguise".
#4 Not transparent & low income potential
So their income disclosure really grinds my gears!
To most people looking at this you would presume that the lowest "average annual income" is $760.
I know a lot of people that would gladly take $760 income each year!
But for a start let's face the truth...
They will need to have spent an extra $1,640 worth of products themselves just to be "active" to receive this "commission" (because of the 6 month sales quota of $1,200)
But it gets worse...
Again in the small print you can see that ONLY "active" consultants are included in the stats above.
That means that the thousands of people that do not hit the "6 month sales quota" and have spent time and effort promoting the products (and of course the $98 to join and $130+ on product packs) are not included!
So actually we have no idea how many people earn more than $12,000 a year on average.
#5 Not in early momentum phase
If I was ever considering joining an MLM company (and I did before) this is 100% the main factor I would look at.
You probably know that the super successful people in any MLM company are the ones that "got in early".
Typically, they help the company grow and there are loads of people that haven't joined the company yet.
However, when you look at the Google trends data you can see that Beautycounter has already peaked for how many people are searching for it and if anything is starting a downward trend each month.
Compare this to other similar beauty companies like Farmasi and you can see they are not the best choice to go with at the moment!
Ready to make passive income online with your own beauty website?
I created a passive income online within a year. And I had no marketing skills or online experience when I started.
See how you can do this too...
My opinion on the Beautycounter MLM
OK, here's what I think...
I think most Beautycounter consultants will join without knowing all the facts. They will be excited about promoting the products and their friends and family may even buy some from them.
But after they try them once and realise they've spent 1,000% more than similar products out there, they will politely decline to "re-order".
All of this time and effort that the consultant has put in doesn't get them anywhere near the $1,200 "6-month sales quota" and they are left feeling like this...
There is only one way people can be successful in MLM companies today (without selling their soul and recruiting anyone and everyone into the company like it's amazing, even when they know it's a pyramid scheme in disguise selling disgustingly expensive products).
And that way is using internet marketing.
How I make passive income online
I seriously considered joining an MLM company before (Arbonne) as I knew some people that were pretty "successful" in it.
I don't doubt there is money to be made in it (if you recruit a lot).
But when I stumbled across affiliate marketing, I realised this business model is far superior because:
- You control the business and can promote anything you want
- You never need to sell to your friends and family
- It's free to start
Yes it still requires hard work and time to make it work.
But I went from a full time PE teacher to making a passive income online within one year...
If you want to discover how I did it then check out this special video I created which explains exactly how. You can also get your free 7-day bootcamp to get started.
Thanks for sharing your review on Beauty Counter opportunity. Many a times such programs are not Scam but the effort , time and the money spent on such so called opportunities are not worth. Your unbiased complete information on this platform is in favour of my statement. However, the Affiliate Marketing opportunity you recommended makes more sense and can reap more success.
Thanks! I’m gald it helped
This was really good. Except a big part isn't accurate- if you fixed that, it would be a valuable article!
If a consultant does not sell 1200 every six months, they drop down to member status (which means they still get member perks.) There are no penalties… they still get all of their earned commission, etc. That part is a good deal, I think, and worth getting right in the article. There's no pressure if it doesn't work out.
Thanks for clarifying Jen!
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