How to Become an

Independent Beauty Consultant

The complete career guide to be an Independent Beauty Consultant: salary, job growth, employers, best schools, and education you may need to get started.

Why We Love It

  • $26,160
    Potential Avg. Salary
  • -1.4%
    Job Growth Rate
  • Flexible Hours
    Career Attribute
  • Working With People
    Career Attribute

Independent beauty consultants are contractors that sell Mary Kay cosmetics and personal care products. Independent beauty consultants earn incomes in two major ways: they earn commissions on products sold, and they receive commissions on products sold by other consultants they’ve recruited.

Recommended Schools

What is an Independent Beauty Consultant?

The following job responsibilities are common for individuals in independent beauty consultant roles:

  • Market and sell Mary Kay cosmetics
  • Recruit and train new independent beauty consultants
  • Host makeover parties, suggest products to party attendees, and help with application of cosmetics

A Day in the Life

Mary Kay independent beauty consultants are contractors that sell on behalf of Mary Kay but are not employed by the company. For this reason, they’re able to choose their own hours and work as much or as little as they want. Many women hold full-time jobs and sell Mary Kay on the side, while others are retired or stay-at-home moms who sell Mary Kay to earn a little extra income. For this reason, there is no typical day for an independent beauty consultant because the job is what you make it.

The biggest goal of an independent beauty consultant is to sell Mary Kay products. Generally, products are sold to friends, family members, and other community members through direct contact or word-of-mouth advertising. Independent beauty consultants also host makeover events where they apply or suggest new cosmetics to encourage product sales. These events may have a theme such as “wedding makeovers” or “holiday makeovers.”

Many independent beauty consultants also work to recruit others into May Kay sales. The position is a multi-level-marketing position that rewards recruiting others by paying commissions on products sold by people who you’re recruited. Women who prove to be exceptional at sales and recruiting often move into independent sales director positions that manage a large area of independent beauty consultants.

Typical Work Schedule

Independent beauty consultants set their own schedules and work as much or as little as they want.

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How To Become an Independent Beauty Consultant

No formal degree is required to become an independent beauty consultant. Individuals interested in the career simply reach out to a current independent beauty consultant or sales director for more information. Consultants are required to purchase a $100 starter kit that includes product samples and training materials to help you get started with selling products. For assistance in getting started, your recruiting consultant is usually available to provide advice, knowledge, and consultation.

Mary Kay’s model is one where products are purchased directly from the company at wholesale price and then sold by the consultant at retail price, which means that most consultants must spend more than the fees for the starter kit to launch their careers. Many women make large investments in product purchases in order to have products on hand when sales occur. If products need to be returned because they were unsold, Mary Kay reimburses 90% of the purchase cost within a year of the purchase.

While no formal education is required, some business, sales, and marketing knowledge can be helpful for achieving success as an independent beauty consultant. Women who earn associate’s or bachelor’s degrees in business or marketing are taught the tools they’ll need to run successful businesses as independent beauty consultants. Additionally, they learn how to utilize digital marketing tools that can be helpful in growing your audience of customers beyond your individual community.

Independent Beauty Consultant Salary Data

We’ve provided you the following to learn more about this career. The salary and growth data on this page comes from recently published Bureau of Labor Statistics data while the recommendations and editorial content are based on our research.

National Anual Salary

Low Range




High Range


National Hourly Wage

Low Range




High Range


How do Independent Beauty Consultant salaries stack up to other jobs across the country? Based on the latest jobs data nationwide, Independent Beauty Consultant's can make an average annual salary of $26,160, or $13 per hour. This makes it an Above Average Salary. On the lower end, they can make $19,200 or $9 per hour, perhaps when just starting out or based on the state you live in.

Salary Rankings And Facts

  • #759 Nationally for All Careers

Highest Education Among Independent Beauty Consultants

  • 0.9%   Doctorate
  • 3.1%   Masters
  • 14.9%   Bachelors
  • 8.5%   Associates
  • 25%   College
  • 31.7%   High School
  • 16%   Less than High School

Job Growth Projections and Forecast

2014 Total Jobs


2024 Est. Jobs


Job Growth Rate


Est. New Jobs


How does Independent Beauty Consultant job growth stack up to other jobs across the country? By 2024, there will be a change of -1,100 jobs for a total of 79,100 people employed in the career nationwide. This is a -1.4% change in growth over the next ten years, giving the career a growth rate nationwide of Below Average.

Growth Rankings And Facts

  • #644 Nationally for All Careers

What Companies Employ The Most Independent Beauty Consultants

Industry Current Jobs New Jobs Needed % Increase
Self-employed workers 72,500 -200 0%
Newspaper publishers 2,200 -700 -1%
Direct selling establishments 800 --- 0%

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