Is Avon an MLM?

Avon is one of the oldest and most successful companies there is in the beauty product niche. They have products that started with perfume, makeup (especially their lipsticks), cosmetics, and personal care that were first targeting women consumers but now they also have counterparts for men. From undergarments, lingeries, t-shirts, socks, shoes, watches, apparels, bags, just everything that a person needs, Avon has it. They’ve been the talk of the town since the early 50s to late 2000s. So where are they now?

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Avon started off as the California Perfume Company founded in 1886 by David McConnell. He was a book salesman back then that gave free sample perfumes as a bonus when he noticed that most people are more interested in the perfume rather than the books itself that’s why he started to experiment on different fragrant mixes in order to create a flagship product. Since then the company was made. The word Avon was first used on one of their cosmetics lines and then decided as the new name of the company in 1939.

The mother of my friend was once a sales representative at Avon back in the day. And whenever I visit their house, they have a lot of Avon brochures present. His mom told me that they’re given monthly to representatives and that acts as a catalog of what are the mainstream products available for that month. The brochures were shown to their customers and they would list orders if the customers wanted to buy something.

Internet was not a thing back then so whenever they have orders from customers, they will allot a day to go to the nearest Avon station and wait for their orders to come. It is a queue because as I said earlier, Avon was a thing back in the day. I only knew that Avon was just a direct selling company which allows sales representatives to earn commissions from sales and I never knew that they also have ranks within the company.

It is a rare thing nowadays that people are enjoying the perks of just being a sales representative and not having to stress about recruiting people just to earn more incentives. Avon was a good side hustle since you can also take orders from your coworkers who don’t have time to go to the mall to buy stuff but are available in Avon. Even his mom told me that she’s not recruiting anyone and the retail commission is already enough for them to get by.

To join Avon, there is a membership fee that costs $25 and there are available starter kits that range from $25 up to $100. As you expected it to be, the higher valued kit has more product samples and sales tools. Since the internet is a thing now and is a big help to these companies, avon also offers a free personal website so that you can be a representative remotely and this will help you keep track of your business.

To start this off, personal retail sales commission ranges from 20% up to 50% depending on your rank and the item sold. Other commissions were not disclosed and are rather hard to find since they just started implementing the MLM model in 2005. But for most MLM companies that we know, recruiting and building a team (downline) will let you earn more incentives and commissions with the company. It is also rumored that they have rank and car bonuses.

Throughout their almost 140 years in the industry, it wouldn’t be surprising if some allegations and lawsuits are filed against them. In 2016, Avon was fined an amount of $6.25 million to settle a pension-managed class-action suit. In May 2018, they were filed a lawsuit for alleged failure to warn employees of a mass layoff to some of their sites. And within the same year, an employee of theirs sued them for firing her from an executive job after disclosing her pregnancy and asking to work remotely.

As for my story, it really is just a direct selling company not until 2005 when they adapted the multilevel marketing model. Since I’m an 80s baby, all is credible and recruiting is just a new implementation before his mother left Avon in 2007. So yes, they’re an MLM company and the current CEO is Angela Cretu. They are now part of the Natura & Co. family (together with Natura, Aesop, and The Body Shop) that is pursuing in building the best beauty company for (and not “in”) the world.

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