Controversy Quadrant: Why Blind People Should Not Be in MLMs!

Hello to all of you beautiful nerds and welcome back from traveling the vast nerd universe. Man, I am kind of regretting this post but I feel like it’s time to do it since as a blind person myself, I need to give the info!

Why Blind People Should Not Be In MLMs!

Yes, the title says it right and that is why I’m doing it. Ever since being at a few state conventions last year, I have learned that people with visual impairments have joined MLMs to “sell” and “run a business.” I am using those terms very lightly because I watch anti-MLM videos myself and against it myself, especially after getting items that did not turn out great when it comes to beauty. Plus, hearing other people’s experiences, especially with Paparazzi, I am appalled at what I heard and I wanted to point out why it’s a bad idea to join one as a visually impaired person and before I start, here is my disclaimer.

Disclaimer

This post is based on observations, opinions, and facts from what the writer of this blog has come up with. Please don’t come after her and shove any of the principles that have been brought to you, if you are in a MLM, because she won’t hear it. If you don’t like what you are about to read, like what her favorite band Sleeping With Sirens sang in one song, if you can’t hang then there’s the door baby!

You Are the Customer!

I am starting with this bit because it feels like some people do not get it and I hear it in every video. You are basically buying the product you are supposed to sell into the public. Some people who are in this so-called industry say there is no product but they say you need a starter kit and inventory and that costs a lot of money! I know some will say it only costs $100 except I heard stories where people spend way more than that and closer to thousands. Here is the thing though, with Social Security alone, it won’t cover the cost all the time since you also have to keep buying every week to an entire month to replenish your inventory. Let’s see what the average someone can get each month with Social Security. When it comes to SSDI, you can get around $800 to $1008 a month and that is not much. This is talking about people who aren’t hired by the way by a job, which is hard to look for which is understandable. I went through that for three years and my check from work goes into bills straight away. Again, if you look at someone who would live on their own and some of the bills may include rent, food, if they have a guide dog or pets, vet bills, if they have a cane only, they would by the tips and the canes from either vendors or the places that make them, transportation tokens like I do, phone since some would either have an IPhone or an Android phone with a carrier, and heck electricity and sometimes cable, still it can’t be feasible to be in an MLM if you have to spend so much on your kit and inventory. Yes, credit cards are great except those would be considered as part of your expenses since those have to be paid off and same with loans if that is looked at too. Again, you are the customer in these things and it’s not good to buy something like this.

These ARE Pyramid Schemes!!!

You will hear this every time from every hon all over and that it is not a pyramid scheme which is a pyramid scheme. When you buy your starter kit, you basically report to an upline. As in, you are one of their members at the bottom of the pyramid. You are supposed to report to your upline in order to get so-called tips, advice, and so on which I will touch upon next and one of the things they expect you to do is of course recruit other people which makes you become the next upline and so on with other people in the levels below. As the pyramid grows, you’re not only making a small amount for yourself but also making money for your upline. Basically, you’re a brick in the pyramid and normally making money shouldn’t be like this. Some of these hons claim if you are buying stuff like a latte from Starbucks you are not being paid for it. You know why? You’re sponsored by them and you are giving Starbucks business that day or everyday buying your coffee so they can stay afloat and in order to stay afloat they have customers. They also compare it to a pyramid with this idea. Here is the thing though, if you are going to work for Starbucks, you are not paying to be an employee of the business in order to get a paycheck, as in you are not a brick in Starbucks’ “pyramid” because you are not making money for the upline, your manager basically gives you your entire check that you made not only for your time but also your tips as a barista. So, MLMs are a pyramid, stay away!

You Don’t Learn Anything While Being in MLMs!

I am all about learning and continuing learning as well. I do teach day to day as my job so I can pass the information along. While being in an MLM, they don’t really teach you anything in the Zoom calls, at the conventions, and other events that take place. When I watch the videos showing some of these calls by teams in one of these schemes, I feel like I want to leave if I was in there because I feel like I am not learning about how to sell something while getting my degree, I am learning a lot more than what they spew in these calls. In most sales jobs, they give training in how to sell the product or how a product works, such as Sephora for example. They put their employees through classes for the products and suggest that their crews be able to research the brands and the products coming into the store. Without the knowledge of these products then why work for Sephora? Heck, I have to study every year to get my certification for JAWS for the newest version that comes out every October. 

What You Learn Is a False Claim!

jBesides not learning anything, some of the claims being brought up are false, especially the wellness MLMs. One good example, which I saw with Savannah Marie, she snuck into a Dotera Zoom Call where doctors who are part of this MLM were giving health claims that felt very odd to me because yes, essential oils are nice and you are supposed to take your vitamins to keep yourself from Covid but it doesn’t cure it. Let that sink in for a moment because when I watched that, I was face palming for most of it because I’ve been sick in December and don’t use essential oils but I do take Vitamin D alongside NyQuil and lozenges. Basically, I take care of myself better with the over the counter stuff. One claim that still gets me is that you can ingest these oils which the net says not to because they can cause damage. I believe that part since aromatherapy does exist and if I was going to use essential oils, I would use it externally not internally and if I take something new that is prescribed, I follow the doctor advice since they of course studied for this stuff. If you think some of the claims are too good to be true, research it. The internet exists and it will give you the information out there!

The Products Are Not As Good in Quality!

You may have heard how the purchasing of products is important, especially for Personal Volume, some of the products are not all it’s cracked up to be. Remember how I mentioned in one post that I have tried items from Avon and Mary Kay. I wished I hadn’t since I felt that some of the items were not great. I felt the two pan shadow items were tiny and hard to put my brush into each half of the compact when most brands like Maybelline, NYX, Colour Pop, even E. L. F. make their shadow compacts big enough for a brush to fit, also a finger tip since some people like that. Heck, I can fit my entire finger into a Mac Paint Pot! Anyways, to me that the quality of these products  don’t match the pricing they think that should be and help the consultant to make a profit. Most people prefer to get a good quality product for the price, especially the size of it. Remember the Mary Kay lip gloss I got? THat was $18 and it was the size of a NYX Butter Gloss and it was really sticky. Mac sells their Lip Glasses for around the same price and you get more in the size. If I wanted to get a Butter Gloss then I could have gone into the Ulta app and purchased one or more for the same price as that Mary Kay Gloss and use a coupon to drop a discount on top. Another example when it comes to poor quality is of course Lula Roe! IF anyone has been in this one or has heard of it, they are a clothing MLM that was known for their leggings. The leggings were cute and great for what you purchased but as time went on and more consultants joined the quality went down where not only people had rips and holes in them but they were sent moldy and wet leggings, because they were stored outside in the climate and caused sun bleaching with some clothes too due to lack of space at the warehouse. This caused customers to leave and also consultants to leave the business of selling for this company and I can understand from a consumer outlook. If I was going to buy leggings, I expect good quality leggings that will last me for a while. One good place I suggest is Amazon. I buy a three pack of leggings for $20 and they are well made and I can wear a cute tunic top with them to work or wear them with a skirt on a cold day. So, I would say don’t buy an MLM product, better to go to Ulta for makeup and hair products. WHich brings me to my next point!

MLM Products Do More Harm Than Good!

Remember the medical claims that are brought up? Well, most products that get shelled out from MLMs do cause more harm than good. As in, the quality can cause adverse effects. Some good examples! Monat’s shampoo and conditioners caused people to have scalp sores, hair to fall out, and bald spots a few years ago. Another example is that Beach Body’s shakes cause people to have stomach problems over time. And now Paparazzi are causing consultants to become sick due to their jewelry now containing lead and nickel and causing their skin to turn green or black due to how much they wore it. Even Caroline, Tracy, and Geri got their leftover inventory tested and found not only those metals but also Cadmium and other harmful ingredients in their jewelry and I believe it since this is bad for a normal person to consume. Even Black Oxygen Organics was known for some bad effects and that caused them to end their company due to how Fvoic Acid caused health problems that they thought was normal. When Savannah Marie talked about some effects people had gone through and she was delivered a lawsuit. I feel that with some MLMs you can’t talk about the harmful effects and if you do they have to throw a lawsuit or say things, “Do not tell your doctor.” I remembered someone I watched on YouTube. She works as a nurse and she talked about how the shakes from Beach Body caused issues for her and she tried to ask her upline about asking her doctor about the shakes and was told not to.  Here is the thing though, people with visual impairments also have allergies to things and it’s hard to see what effects they would get on their skin or scalp. I did admit I felt a slight tingle on my skin all thanks to that charcoal mask from Mary Kay when I did a patch test because as someone who has  sensitive skin, it’s important to have a patch test on skin to see if the skin reacts and it did react. I did wipe it off even though she ignored me when I requested the wet wipe. If someone were to go through the Monat issues or have a skin reaction with the essential oils, they won’t be able to see any rashes unless they use Aira or Seeing A. I. to read labels or Be My Eyes which I am grateful for.

Toxic Positivity Does Not Equal Empowerment

Even though we look for positive outlooks in our lives, being in an MLM is not one of them.  I love the idea of being positive but seeing how they do it in some of the Zoom calls, even during that makeup panel that sucked during one of the State Conventions, I felt like the sugar and sweet was going to overpower me and I needed to leave. One thing is that this toxic positivity is a cult mentality which causes the person in the MLM believe they’re truly the only ones who can do this business and that you have time freedom and can be with your families except in reality you’re on your phone twenty-four hours a day, you are rarely with your family and recruiting people. Even though the uplines try to make it sound so positive in the calls, seeing most of them in the anti-MLM videos showed a different side of them making it seem like the consultants are not doing enough to make the money especially for their own pockets. To me that does not sound like empowerment. To me, empowerment comes from within and how you empower others in either teaching them or how much they smile towards what they take from you. Also, empowerment can also come from people who are really supportive as in people that you know and love that are willing to see you succeed than fail. I love how Roberta Blevvins put it best on her podcast about how MLMs want to see you fail rather than succeed and looking at the videos, I saw it too. The up lines are really relying on that quick buck they make from their downlines and if they get left in the dust then upline blames them for it and to me that is not really empowering someone. If that were me and I hear that, I am out the next day because it’s not my fault when people are able to see through the cold call or message about the product or recruitment. I would say just stay with your loved ones and ditch the cult mentality of MLMs.

Blind People Can’t Drive the Car!

I know this one sounds weird but if you rank high enough you get a bonus for a car that you have to stick the company logo on except blind people can’t drive! As in, we don’t have licenses so that means we can’t get that pink cadillac to co-sign on. Oh yeah, you don’t really sign for it due to the amount of credit being used as you guy the products, like I said way above, you are really the customer. I remembered one former anti-MLM person talked about in one video, she went to get a new car and asked if anyone from MLMs came for their cars and the salesmen said they don’t really buy it, they have to have someone with them to co-sign. And the scary thought is that the consultant has the responsibility to either keep their rank or have to pay the taxes later to keep the car. The car to me is a waste because it’s already chosen for you and if you can afford a chauffeur then good luck.

MLMs Are Not ADA Compliant

Final point is that these MLMs don’t accommodate people who are disabled or have disabled loved ones. Tracy from Blue Grass BLing told her story while being in Paparazzi where she and others went on a cruise where a man who was using a scooter was told he couldn’t go on land with his scooter. His wife and Tracy were willing to take the scooter apart and carry the parts until they got on land but the man was told no. This caused an uproar and I wouldn’t blame Tracy for sending letters with everyone else standing up for this man. A lady even told her story to Tracy how her walker was taken since she had MS and ended up falling during the Paparazzi convention last August and the staff took a while to find her walker when she wanted to go to the bathroom. I want to hear her experience on Tea Time because if you have a tool you need in order to get around it is important to us. I remembered at one State Convention that a woman was in Paparazzi and when I heard Tracy tell her story, I would be horrified if they tried to take her cane or guide dog away because the cane lets us navigate around while guide dogs are someone’s eyes. If they did the same to this lady and she had to go to the bathroom or gets knocked over without a support, or gets pushed aside for new inventory, then who would help her? I heard horror stories about the Paparazzi. one former consultant in a scooter was pushed away when they were opening up for people to buy inventory. Then another person who was in a wheelchair was supposed to go onstage and was told she is not allowed because of the wheelchair. Even a deaf person got blocked by the heads of Paparazzi, I believe it was Trent and his wife, I forget, because they were tagged for help. I am not sure how other MLMs really treat people who are blind or have other disabilities like being deaf, having Cerebral Palsy, and others but I feel that the Americans for Disabilities Act should not be ignored since they rely on things like canes, wheelchairs, and other assistance to get around. I am not sure how accessible the websites are either since some people need to use their screen reader and magnification software to purchase items on the phone and the internet.

How to Keep Myself Out of MLM?

I bet this is going through your mind when it comes to MLMs and of course someone can have the impulse to join without researching. The first thing is of course researching into the company even with a cold message from a hon. Facebook or Instagram would show where they would be if it’s not private and you can find horror stories and the income statements behind this by doing a Google Search pretty easily. If you encounter a hon and they try to recruit you, ask the questions as in what company are you in? Is the website accessible? How much do you really make? Keep on asking even if they dodge these questions since it is important to gain knowledge than lose it or not have it at all. If you are in an MLM and you feel that you don’t like it, leave of course! There are recovery groups out there, even Tracy, Geri, and Caroline from Cracked the Crown and Bluegrass Bling created a recovery group for former Paparazzi consultants where they give advice on getting back together or creating your own boutique. Plus, there are ways of getting jobs as a visually impaired person that is not an MLM and I am an example of that. Also, you can find ways of starting your own business without hearing MLMs let you do that, again Google will give you the resources to lead to that start up.

And that concludes my post. I know this was out of the ordinary but had to get it out since my subscriptions are coming in which the first this month will be Glossy Box! Stay tuned!

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