Is Scentsy a Scam? Pyramid Scheme in Disguise?!

Welcome to our Scentsy Review!

I’m guessing that you’ve just been invited to a “scented candle home party”, where you were introduced to an “amazing opportunity” called Scentsy.   It sounds like a good way of working from home and making some money, but part of you is still asking… Is Scentsy a Scam?

First off, it’s great to see that you’re doing your research before buying into any “seemingly good” product.

That is how you avoid scams and find only legitimate ways to make money online!

To be completely transparent with you, we’re not associated with Scentsy in any form.  We’re not here to pitch or sell you anything.

Instead, we want to ensure you get all of the real facts regarding their questionable products and business opportunity, and why it has a really low income potential.  All of our opinions are backed up by real evidence.

Is Scentsy a Scam?  Here’s the truth…

Scentsy Review Summary

Product Name: Scentsy

Founder: Heidi & Orville Thompson in 2004

Product Type: Homecare & Personal Care MLM company

Price: $99 to start, $150 product purchase each quarter, $10/month for website maintenance fee

Best For: Ladies, Moms

is-scentsy-a-scam-logo

Pros

  • Consultant Support
  • Money-Back Guarantee
  • Member of Direct Selling Association

Cons

  • Scentsy Products Not Natural
  • Expensive Products
  • Pyramid Scheme in Disguise?
  • Traditional Recruiting
  • Really Low Success Rate

Summary: Scentsy is an MLM company that sells “scent-related” and fragrance products.  It is a legitimate company, but there are just a few complaints that have been made about this company and their business opportunity that you should know before considering whether to sign up or not. 

The reality is that most of the people who join Scentsy fail and end up losing money.  Product-wise, they use a lot of synthetic and artificial ingredients yet they claim that their products are all-natural.

Rating: 20/100

Recommended? No

Table of Contents

What is Scentsy?

Scentsy is an MLM or Multi-Level Marketing company that sells a range of “scent-related” and fragrance products.

If you’ve already been to one of their home-parties, hosted by one of their consultants, you’ll know that their flagship products are their Scentsy wax bars and wax warmers:

scentsy-warmer

We’ll get into a little more detail about their products later on in our review.  But the bit you’re more likely to be interested in, and why you are here is their business opportunity to make money from home.

The 1-minute video promotional video below will explain a little more about this opportunity from Scentsy consultants…

Now, you’re sure to be smart enough to know that they have just selected a few select individuals who clearly love the company, and were happy to be part of this promotional video.

So, the question that still needs to be answered is…

Is Scentsy a Pyramid Scheme

Technically, no.  Scentsy is not a pyramid scheme.

It is possible for Scentsy consultants to earn commissions for selling their products, without a need to recruit anyone.

But, like with most MLMS, the money isn’t in selling the products but recruiting more members into the company.  So a more prudent question to ask is… Is Scentsy a Pyramid Scheme in Disguise?

What’s a Pyramid Scheme?

A pyramid scheme is a company that promises payment in return for you recruiting new members into the scheme.  They don’t usually have products or services to speak of, so recruitment is your only option.

They have been made illegal in most countries due to them being unsustainable and impossible for everyone to make money.

This diagram from Wikipedia shows how they are not sustainable…

pyramid scheme

Let me be clear, not all MLMs are pyramid schemes as most do offer a legitimate product line or service.

However, some MLM companies are hiding behind these products to make themselves appear legit, and it hides that recruitment is the only way of making good money.  This is what makes a pyramid scheme in disguise…

We’ll reveal Scentsy’s real colours later in our review, but for now the 5-minute video below will help you spot these pyramid schemes in disguise…

Success is Rare at Scentsy

Success isn’t just rare at Scentsy, but it’s rare at any MLM opportunity.

Did you know that between 72.5% and 99% of MLM representatives lose money?

When it comes to the chances of success at Scentsy, they clearly fall into the average MLM category.  But their income disclosure statement is from 2015, and it concerns me that the company have not published an updated version after nearly 7 years.

That makes me wonder if anyone is making money here, or that only a select handful are, and they have done this through heavy recruitment.  We’ll go into this in more detail later in the review…

How Does Scentsy Work?

Scentsy produces a range of scented personal care products, mainly wax bars and wax meltors.

They also offer a opportunity for everyday people to make money from selling these products at home parties in return for commissions on any sales made.

It sounds like a good deal for both parties, but the real benefactors are the company as they save millions of dollars on advertising and they leave the hard job of selling these products up to their consultants.

Let’s look a little more into their product line…

Scentsy Product Line

Before considering any MLM opportunity, its really important to fully understand their products.  It would also be worth you giving the products a try first too.

Most MLM companies offer a very similar product line, and Scentsy isn’t really that different from most we’ve seen.  They is a slightly different take on their wax melters, which we’ll show you in a moment…

Their flagship products is their wax and warmer, as they are claimed to stand out when compared to candles as they:

  • don’t release carcinogens (can cause cancer)
  • they’re not a fire hazard

The warmers are safe and fill the room with a fragrance (there is a huge variety of smells including wood, bakery, floral, fruity etc.)  They use a low watt lightbulb, and the wax cubes are formulated to work with it.

So, the benefit of Scentsy is that you have no open flame, soot, smoke, etc.

In the video below, you’ll here Tristan (a Scentsy director) explain more about the product…

Aside from the scented wax and warmers, they have also expanded into a wide product line, which includes…

  • Laundry –Laundry liquid, scented softener, dryer disk, washer whiff, etc…
  • Cleaning – Kitchen soap, freshener, multipurpose kitchen cleaning spray, etc…
  • Personal Care –Bath bomb, body cream, body wash, hand cream, hand soap, lotion, etc…
  • Other Accessories –  Car bars, room spray, diffuser, essential oils

You can check out the full range in the Scentsy shop

scentsy-shop-products

Whilst Scentsy’s wax burners are a little unique.  The rest of their product line is very similar to many of the other MLMs that are on the market, like:

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How To Make Money with Scentsy?

Let’s get into more detail about their business opportunity.  Scentsy is a typical MLM, so they offer the usual 2 ways for you to make money as a Scentsy consultant:

  1. Sell their products and earn retail commissions
  2. Recruit people and build your downline team to earn various bonuses

Please note, you don’t actually earn money for recruiting people.  That would make it a pyramid scheme, you only earn bonuses based on how well your downline team sell.  So, it’s in your benefit to ensure you recruit the right people and train them to be effective sellers.

Before we explore their compensation plan, let’s get into how to get started with Scentsy…

Getting Started with Scentsy

First off, there is the requirement to pay a $99 one-time fee to purchase their Scentsy Starter Kit.

The Starter Kit includes some basic tools and fragrances that includes:

  • 80 party size scent testers
  • order forms
  • business cards
  • a warmer
  • a scent bar

You’ll also be provided with a free website for 3 months.  After this point, you’ll be charged $10/month for the maintenance fee of the website.

But that isn’t the only monthly costs that you’ll need to factor into your budget.

Scentsy Monthly Costs

It is pretty common for an MLM to have a monthly sales quota that their consultants have to achieve to remain active.  If you don’t hit this quota, you won’t get paid and some will even kick you out…

Regarding Scentsy, it becomes apparent in their FAQ that they do have a quarterly sales quota…

scentsy-faq-monthly-quota

Additionally, for you to qualify for commission, you have to generate a Personal Sales Volume of at least 200PV per month and over 1000PV per month for your downline teams.

The problem with this is that for those who can’t meet the requirement, they need to purchase those products themselves and bear the costs, which can cost up to a few hundred dollars per month.

Just take a look at the follow proof:

scentsy-monthly-quota

Scentsy will even cancel your right to sell if you are unable to meet the sales requirement.

This is really, really bad as they are indirectly forcing you to buy products yourself just to stay active.  Most MLM’s do this, and it also means that their own consultants are the companies biggest customer group.

So, like most MLM companies, Scentsy has made it super confusing for you to know exactly what you need to do to get started, what the monthly expenses will be, and how to actually ensure you get paid for any sales.

Based on what we’ve found, heres the costs for the first year…

  • $99
  • $10 x 9 ($90)
  • $150 x 4 ($600)

Minimum Costs of Year 1 = $789

This is before you take into account any other costs and expenses that go with this type of business opportunity, like training, marketing, travel, fuel, food and hosting home parties…

P.S. This program enabled us to Create a 4-Figure Monthly Passive Income Stream.  It’s Free to get started and costs only $49/month to go full-time!

Scentsy Compensation Plan

Scentsy uses the table below to combine their compensation plan into a visual table for you to see…

scentsy-compensation-plan

Basically, there are ten ways for you to get paid…

  1. Commission (20-25% for each sale)
  2. Bonus from wholesale volume
  3. Frontline bonus TWV
  4. Frontline consultant bonus TWV
  5. Frontline star consultant bonus TWV
  6. Frontline superstar consultant bonus TWV
  7. Frontline director bonus TWV
  8. First generation direction TWV bonus
  9. Second generation direction TWV bonus
  10. Third generation
  11. direction TWV bonus

I know it might still not make much sense, but the bottom line is that there are only 2 ways for you to make money:

  • Sell their products
  • Recruit people into your dowline

But out of the ten ways, 9 are all related to recruiting a team and then earning bonuses or commissions based on their sales.  Basically this shows that you can only make good money by recruiting people into your downline.

Watch the 8 minute video below to see what we mean…

Is Scentsy a Scam?

No, Scentsy isn’t a scam.  They product legitimate products and they pay their consultants on time like they sat they do.

So, why do so many people claim MLMs are scams?  Well, this is mainly down to them not having all the facts before getting involved in one.  Those who are making good money are those that are acting like full-time sales managers.  Actively managing a team of consultants to make money.

Most newbies are led to believe they can earn a part time income without too much hassle, when in reality they are forced to keep on buying new products every month even though they aren’t making any sales.

They end up realising they are losing too much money and walk away calling it a scam.  Scentsy might not be a scam, but the real question you need to answer is whether you feel this is the right opportunity for you.

The remainder of our review will help you get all of the details you need to make an informed decision.

Just to be completely transparent with you, I’m not a distributor of Scentsy, nor do I endorse Scentsy in any way.  I have researched the website, testimonials, and information available on the internet to get the details about what this program genuinely does.    I do this, as I have been caught out by a scam in the past, and am trying to help others avoid a similar fate

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What We Liked About Scentsy

Here’s what we liked about Scentsy:

#1 Consultant Support

Scentsy independent consultants get free team training on signing up with the company.  They also receive ongoing training along the way too.

Most MLMS lack proper training, so it’s good to see Scentsy offer this as part of the process.

#2 Money-Back Guarantee

All of their products have a 30-day refund policy, which is a good thing.

Then, their products like Scentsy Go and Scentsy Diffusers have a lifetime warranty.

#3 Member of DSA

Another good sign that Scentsy isn’t a scam, is that they are a member of Direct Selling Association (DSA).

Not all direct selling/ network marketing companies can be approved as a member of DSA, due to the strict rules they have to meet.

What We Didn't Like About Scentsy

Here’s what we didn’t like about Scentsy:

#1 Scentsy is NOT Natural!

I bet, Scentsy consultants are likely telling people that their products are all-natural and healthy to the body.  It’s claimed to be their USP.

But they don’t make it clear when something isn’t natural.  An example is their flagship Scentsy bars…

scentsy-natural-products-claims

So, this makes you think that their products are “natural”.  Sounds great, right?

But when you start getting into the details of other Scentsy products, you’ll find this…

scentsy-secret-ingredients
scentsy-synthetic-oils

Synthetic oils being used and “secret combination of ingredients”. I’m not being funny, but how is anyone supposed to trust them or be able to sell them effectively when they don’t even know what ingredients are in these “safe” products. 

I don’t see any reason why candle wax ingredients need to be a secret, or something that needs to be hidden…

#2 Expensive Products

Expensive products is a red flag for MLM’s.  It is part of a sign that they are operating like a pyramid scheme in disguise.  We know they are already giving their members a monthly sales quota to achieve too.

So, you can buy 1 wax melt from Scentsy, for $7.25 o you can get 8 from Amazon for $15.99

That is a huge difference, so why would people want to pay over the odds for a similar product?

That is where that monthly sales quota comes into it.

The company keeps on thriving as their members are either buying products or recruiting more people to buy products all trying to keep active.

This leads us to our next concern…

#3 Scentsy Acts like a Pyramid Scheme in Disguise

The reason we say this is down to the last point.  The focus is not to sell the products, but to recruit new members into the business.

Think back to the ways you can get paid… 1 of the ways is based on selling the products.  The other 9 are all based on recruitment targets.

The only way of earning good money is through recruitment, and then the diagram below becomes true of the compensation plan…

pyramid-scheme-graphic

Notice anything about the shape of that structure?  Yep, it’s a pyramid shape…

#4 Most People FAILED!

Here’s the proof you should be looking for…

Below is a screenshot from their Income Disclosure Statement 2015 (this is the latest one we could find)

 

Scentsy-Income-Disclosure-Statement

This shows that the majority of people are only earning a few hundred or a few thousand dollars PER YEAR!  Before expenses are taken into account.

Even at the Director rank, which has an average annual income of $15,590 (before expenses), I wouldn’t really consider that a sustainable income as it is just $1,299/month.

It seems more like a side income.

What makes these figures worse is that these aren’t profit figures.  So when you take into account all of the costs that go with running a business like this, yu will be losing money.

I will only consider people with the rank of Star Director and SuperStart Director to be earning a full-time sustainable income but look at the number of people…

Only 328 people from the entire company made it to Star Director and 196 people from the entire company made it to SuperStar Director.

That’s why I said most people FAILED!

#5 You Don’t OWN a Business

Our final concern is this. .. You won’t even own the business.  Have a look at this complaint from the Better Business Bureau.

scentsy-bbb-complaint

If you aren’t able to achieve your sales quota, or don’t abide by the Scentsy rules, you can have your whole “business” shut down overnight.

Your website is only a duplicated website, and you don’t really own anything by becoming a Scentsy consultant.

Haven't Made Your First $1 Yet?

Studies have shown that more than 70% of the people who want to make money online have not made their first dollar yet. So, you’re not alone!

My Scentsy Review - Final Conclusion

Scentsy is a legitimate MLM company, and being a member of the Direct Selling Association shows that they are not a scam or operating as a true pyramid scheme.

Their products do get some good ratings, and might be something you want to use in your home.  

But as for their business opportunity, we have some real concerns.  Their income disclosure statement alone shows that the income potential is really low, the focus soon moves to recruitment, which could make them a pyramid scheme in disguise, and they are still relying on traditional recruiting (home parties).  Which is much harder than you might think, these days.

There are much better options out there, as you can find out next…

How We Make Money Online

I’m not a fan of MLM, not because it’s illegal or not profitable, but because of all the restrictions and expensive costs involved.

Instead, Affiliate Marketing is our top recommended business model for anyone looking to make money online

The reasons are simple…

  • You can promote anything you want and aren’t restricted to only promote products from one MLM company
  • You don’t have to recruit anyone to make money
  • You never need to sell to your friends and family
  • It’s free to get started

In fact, with affiliate marketing we’ve been able to Create a 4-Figure Monthly Passive Income Stream.  If you want to learn more, click here.

Thanks for checking out our Scentsy Review!  If you have any questions or comments to add, then please write them in the comments section below. 😉

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Scentsy

$99 + $150 product purchase per quarter + $10/month website fee
2

Overall Rating

2.0/10

Pros

  • Consultant Support
  • Money-Back Guarantee
  • Member of DSA

Cons

  • Products Not All-Natural as Claimed
  • Expensive Products
  • Pyramid Scheme in Disguise?
  • Traditional Recruiting
  • Really Low Success Rate

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