Crownless Princesses

Real SeneGence distributors. Real stories.

I signed up for SeneGence around February 2017, right in the thick of the Out Of Stock (OOS) Apocalypse. I signed up under a local woman I befriended. I’d been wanting to help my husband out a bit by taking the financial load off his shoulders and possibly “going back to school” with some online courses. I was excited at first. I paid my $55 (ie over $60 after S&H and taxes), joined every Facebook distributor group I could, listened to my upline for guidance and listened to and observed from other distributors because I was the new kid and they obviously knew more than I did about how these things run, right?

When I signed up, my upline kind of but not really made me aware of how dire OSS was. She flashed me her phone, showed me all the stuff that was OSS, but reassured me that there was plenty of LipSense to get me started with, and I needed to order right away. Order business cards. Order packaging. Start a group. Plan a party. Indiscriminately add friends to it because if they wanted to leave and not support me, they would, and friends that wanted to see me succeed would stick around.

Recruit recruit recruit. Sell sell sell. Party party party.

(Even as I’m writing my blood is boiling to think of how I got suckered into this mess, despite being such a cautious person.)

I listened to her because I thought we were friends. I listened to the group chatter when things were really bad and NOTHING was in stock but skin care products no one cared about because all we’re ever told is “Our lipstick is the best and it sells itself”. Hint: it doesn’t sell itself.

I continued to listen. I continued to front load when I had no money to do it with. Another reason I started this was to help with debts, not add to them! But over and over again I read “front load” from uplines that we as newbies are supposed to be able to trust and look to for guidance. I read so many stay positive, God’s got this type things. I’m a follower, but I have a hard time believing God is in something that felt so off for me.

This went on for months. I’d feel discouraged about why I did this in the first place and I’d consult with my upline, she’d give me a generic pep talk and ask a lot of questions about why I started this to begin with, building a business, etc. All I wanted to do was pay some bills and maybe further my education! Not build an empire!

Over time I realized how I’d been used. That alone made me mad, but what made me even angrier is that I didn’t even see it coming.

There’s two kinds of distributors: ones that just sell product, and ones that sell possibilities. The ones that sell possibilities build big teams, get big commissions off those big teams, and give them the cheery pep talks when there’s an impending mutiny because nothing is in stock. Those are the ones who were sickengly positive all the time, discouraging any sort of questioning the situation and squashing it as “negativity” and “if you aren’t succeeding, you aren’t working hard enough” which is utter and total bullshit. I realized it too late after I’d spent hundreds if not a few thousand trying to stick it out, keep positive, and “girl boss” my way out of a bad situation.

It’s so easy to fall for the tactics. I really do like the lipstick but the pitches I was advised to give to sell product never felt genuine. I felt like I was misleading everyone when I tried to sell a whole overpriced kit when you don’t even really need the remover (it tastes awful anyway), or to act super pumped for a product that I hated or didn’t work (looking at you, mascara and lip volumizer).

I lasted about four months before I jumped ship. I was not happy doing this business. I wasn’t excited. I was super jaded about the company and their shadiness, their misleading methods of selling product, the distributors chugging that SeneBlue Kool-Aid and trying to get others to shut up and chug it, too. I got so sick of it all and was really depressed for a while because I felt like a failure.

I sold off what I could in a final going out of business (GOOB) sale, and sent the rest back to the company. I got reimbursed, not fully, but enough. I feel burned by someone I trusted, too. I really felt like she knew how bad it was and glossed over it to get me to sign up. She was really convincing and reassuring, and I totally fell for it like a complete sucker. I doubt she’s going to pay me for my extra leftovers I gave her, too.

I know not everyone’s experience was like mine. I should have known better, should have trusted my gut about this company and MLMs, but I was pulled in by playing to my best intentions.

Moral of the story: if it doesn’t make you happy to do, don’t do it. And don’t fall for pushy sales tactics, no matter who they’re coming from.

I will never, ever do an MLM again. I’d sell a kidney if I needed money that badly.

— Jaded And Not Blue

#SeneGence #LipSense #frontloading #outofstock #cult #MLM #antiMLMmovement #truestory

Photo by Tyler McRobert on Unsplash

Photo by María Victoria Heredia Reyes on Unsplash

Hello Anti-MLM world! For purposes of the blog, you can call me MaidenDisenchanted.

A little bit about myself. I am currently a SeneGence Distributor, disenchanted and maneuvering my way out. I signed up in early 2017 just before everything went out of stock. I tried LipSense in 2016, and immediately fell in love with it (I had used long-wear lipsticks for years and this was the best I had ever experienced). I still love LipSense! But over the course of the last year, I have come to realize that the business opportunity is just bad.

See, I had originally signed up just to get a discount on my own products. I honestly wanted almost every color, and thought signing up was the way to do it. Yet, I still had a “launch party” and invited some friends to try it. And I even sold product at cost to them, because I wasn't going to be doing this as a business (yes ... I know that's against the rules). Well I was honestly floored at how many people wanted LipSense! So, I decided to give the business thing a go (and sell at retail, or only discount up to 15%). And then everything went out of stock.

Photo by Anete Lūsiņa on Unsplash

I had been a demonstrator for another MLM (rubber stamping), about 10 years ago. Their commission was only 20%, so I was thinking I could run my LipSense business the same way (have parties and place orders). And with SeneGence, the commission would be a lot bigger, right? Well … not quite. First, there wasn't enough product to take orders, compile into a party, and order. And wait, if I actually did a party, I was stuck having to give away product for the hostess rewards! My old MLM had a smaller commission, but at least they provided the hostess benefits and everything was generally in stock!

But, I wasn't smart enough at the time I was realizing all of this. I thought that because so many people I knew loved LipSense that it would actually be profitable for me to just buy product and sell it. So I started buying colors, one at a time, as they came in stock. I spent HUNDREDS on shipping costs alone in 2017! But at the same time, I really was selling, and I was selling a LOT! And I ranked up just three months after signing up!

At times I had more Facebook parties than I could keep up with. (My husband came to dread times when I was doing a Facebook party because I would literally disappear. I would be “home” but not really “home.”) So I justified how many orders I was placing because I was genuinely selling at least enough to offset what I was ordering. But then I was also justifying a lot of expenses in materials, mirrors, shelves, brochures, etc. I thought this business would work in the long run. I did vendor events (but I barely broke even on them, and I spent hundreds of dollars in supplies to get ready), only to decide I didn't really like spending all day on a weekend away from my family. Vendor events were way outside my comfort zone.

I had an active Facebook group (and I spent WAY too much time on it!), and I was introduced to people I would have never met otherwise. Some of these women have become close friends, and I am grateful that I didn't run my business in a way that people felt “sold” every time they talked to me. I really kept my personal life and “SeneLife” separate for the most part.

Photo by rawpixel.com on Unsplash

However, it was not until I started compiling my records to do my taxes that I realized what the real damage was. See, first I was getting things like my 1099 from SeneGence and my credit card processors. I realized that I had moved over $12K last year and I thought that was amazing! Until I saw that I had spent closer to $20K in product orders, supplies, and shipping etc. And SeneGence doesn't make it easy for you to track how much you ordered. Yes, it's all there, but if you want to total it out … you've got to do that yourself. I had about $3K in inventory left at the end of 2017. It was eye opening to realize I had given away so much product in giveaways and incentives. I had often done free shipping and no tax, so I was eating a lot of costs. There was literally NO PROFIT, even though I moved THOUSANDS of dollars in product.

Prior to seeing the exact numbers in my tax documents, I had already begun seeing large numbers of distributors going out of business. In many cases, these distributors had bought more than I had, and for the same reasons. When nothing was in stock, you bought what you could, when you could. And many of these distributors were realizing that inventory left over at the end of the year is taxed as an ASSET and isn't deducted from your income. So they were having to pay taxes on the product they overbought! I was seeing GOOB (going out of business) posts in groups on Facebook selling product cheaper than I could buy it directly from SeneGence. I was really concerned that so many had overextended themselves, and then I started feeling like a jerk keeping these deals from my own customers and expecting them to pay more from me.

And then I started seeing the posts in my team group pages that were encouraging FRONT LOADING* every month.

I ran across a two-part video of a leadership training by none other than Joni Rogers, the Founder and CEO of SeneGence:

Inventory Build Part 1

Inventory Build Part 2

It was EYE OPENING. For one, Joni mentions in the first part that not building inventory (front loading) is “Hold[ing] back [your] opportunity to sell.” Seriously!?? Taking on more inventory than you can sell is just putting yourself in debt, or spending money that could go ANYWHERE else. If product had been in stock, I want to say I would have not stocked up as I did. But then again, this is where the SeneGence compensation plan manipulates you to buy more. Remember, in order to get 50% off, you have to order $1,500 in retail product! To get 40% off you have to order $600. And pay sales tax on the retail value!

In the end of Part 2, she refers to a woman with a $100K budget of her husband's money as “Ms. Rocks-a-lot.” (I guess this was me.) It really showed me what SeneGence really thinks of its distributors. They are dollar signs, plain and simple. The entire premise of Joni's method of encouraging inventory and budgeting it is an assumption that EVERY booking will net $500 in sales. This has been proven to be false. (Yes, I had some parties get way over $500, but I had others that barely qualified at $150.) Plus, with market overflow as we currently are experiencing (and so many going out of business—understandably), I feel it is absolutely dishonest that Joni is encouraging Crown Princesses to use this dishonest method of accounting to their new recruits.

And then I saw these types of graphics flowing down from the Amethyst Queen (or Ruby Queen? I can't keep track) way above me.

I mean, really?! There is so much in this post that is misleading. The assumptions in the numbers here are that every person who signs up will spend 300PV every month ($600 retail at 40% off). This is simply not true, especially for those of us who got wise as to how much we were ordering.

Additionally, when I was doing two Facebook parties in a week, I was spending multiple hours every night in that week to prepare and engage in those parties! And I sponsored only ONE person EVER as a result of a party. Granted, I have never been a fan of MLM pyramid style compensation, so recruitment was never a priority for me. The only people who signed up with me were people who came to me asking about it and wanting to do it. And I have never encouraged any of my team to keep inventory or recruit. And, I was mistaken to believe an income could be had by selling LipSense alone.

What I have referenced above is only a drop in the big fat bucket of misleading information flowing down the ranks of SeneGence distributors. And there is absolutely no forum to question any of the Kool-Aid in team Facebook groups. I have been called out for being negative, just because I questioned the numbers in posts like the one above. I thought by openly questioning them, perhaps other distributors could avoid making the same mistakes as so many of us.

So, I am leaving SeneGence. I am lucky to be one of the few that didn't take on tons of debt, but I spent money that could have taken my entire family on a cruise! It makes me sick to think about that. I am trying to figure out how to get rid of my inventory. I love the products … guess I could have a 10 year supply … if it actually is any good after that long.

And if this post helps someone avoid making the same mistakes I did, then it has been worth it. Even if you want to stay with SeneGence, please read the above, get all the information, keep detailed and accurate records, and DON'T DRINK THE KOOL-AID!!

— MaidenDisenchanted

*Front loading or inventory loading is the practice of buying a large amount stock up front, generally more than you can sell easily.

#SeneGence #LipSense #frontloading #inventory #MLM #antiMLMmovement #antiMLM #pyramidscheme

Honestly, guys. HONESTLY. Have you learned nothing from the Stock Photo Debacle of 2017?

Photoshopped lipstick, yet again!

This. Is. A. Stock. Photo. It is not a genuine photo of these new LipSense colors in use.

This is a photo from iStock. We're not lying, joking, or doctoring anything here. Click here to go to its page on iStockphoto.com.

And this is the post that SeneGence put up on its Facebook Page on 4 March 2018:

Headdesk.

#SeneGence #LipSense #MLM #antiMLMmovement #antiMLMCoalition #deceptiveadvertising

SeneGence is a pro at 'pay to play'.

What does this mean?

If you're a SeneGence LipSense distributor, and happen to have a downline (people who have signed up under you), and they purchase products from SeneGence — woo hoo! You get a commission! Actual money!

(Photo by Sharon McCutcheon on Unsplash)

BUT! (You knew there was a but, didn't you?)

To be paid this commission — to 'play' — you have to place an order with SeneGence that same month.

And it's not even 'Buy something, get the full amount owing to you'. Oh no. It's much more complicated and nasty than that.

This is easier with an example. Let's say your downline, Lulu, places a nice juicy order, that's worth 800 PV.

Note well — commissions are only paid on items that attract Points Value (PV) — various things like makeup applicators, stickers, bags, testers and other supplies do not earn PV. So if Lulu is ordering heaps of non-PV stuff, you'll earn nothing on that part of her order. Commission is not based on the amount of money spent, but the PV of the order/s of that month.

OK. So Lulu's bought heaps of stock that is worth 800 PV. And you've potentially earned $80 commission (10% of the 800 PV). Woo hoo!

Now, if you want to earn the first $10 (yes, TEN DOLLARS) of the commission value (CV) owing to you, you need to place a 100 PV order that month too, which you'll hit if you buy eight tubes of LipSense.

This will cost you well over $100, depending on which country you're in. A 100 PV order is 30% off retail. So that's $140 USD. Or $190 AUD. Now add on their over-priced shipping & handling fees.

(From the Distributor Compensation Plan)

BUT, if you'd like the rest of the commission owing to you, you have to have ordered 300 PV over the month to 'qualify' (and the proviso about products that attract PV applies here too — you can't stock up on applicators, testers and supplies to do this).

A 300 PV order is expensive. You'll be at a 40% discount, but still, you're roughly $500 out of pocket. And that's a lot more stock to sell (or pile up in your house).

This 'remainder of what's owing to you' is called the Group Sales Volume (GSV) Bonus. It's very complicated, hard to understand (intentionally), and there are other ways of achieving it, which involve having a big downline etc. We're trying to keep it simpler here, so we all have some chance of understanding it. You can see a PDF about it in more detail here.).

So, to get the full commission owing to you from Lulu — the initial $10, plus the remaining GSV of $70 ($80 total), you will have to have ordered at least $500 worth of stock.

To earn that $80 from Lulu, you've just spent $500.

If your downline commission is less than the amount you have to pay to earn it, you're actually going backwards financially. Sure, you've got more stock, and maybe you're selling $500 of product every month, but many don't.

Guess who wins this particular game (hint it ain't you).

Unless! Unless you're recruiting heaps of downlines, and they're building THEIR downlines, and so on. In which case, you can make an income. And that's sailing close to the pyramid scheme cyclone ...

And it's not just commissions where SeneGence gets you to pay to play. This is just the tip of a most expensive iceberg.

Further reading

MLM Attorney: Required Purchases, the MLM Pay to Play Dilemma

MLM — The Truth: Red Flag #3: Pay to play purchases

MLM Legal: What does the phrase “pay to play” mean?

#paytoplay #SeneGence #LipSense #MLM #pyramidscheme #antiMLMmovement

Not_Worth_It

Madison Colleen*, an ex-SeneGence distributor in America, has kindly offered to share her story with us. SeneGence is the MLM company that produces LipSense, as well as a wide range of skin care and other cosmetics. She joined in 2010, a lot earlier than most current distributors, so she has a really unique perspective on the company, and how it has performed over the last seven years.

When did you join SeneGence, and why did you decide to join?

Madison: I joined SeneGence in September 2010. I joined because a co-worker had begun selling the products, and was always doing videos, posting them on Facebook, and talking about them at work. However, I did not sign up with her, because I saw how pushy she was with people at work, trying to get them to place their orders every month, and trying to get everyone else at work to sign up. Everyone that wanted to buy products from her, she coerced them to sign up instead of just selling them the products they wanted.

I did not want that to happen to me as well, so I stalked around and found another lady in town who also was a distributor. I set up an appointment with her to sample some of the lip products. I went in to buy a couple of products with no intention of joining.

An hour later, I had a full makeover, was loaded down with the entire line of skin care and cosmetics from her stock, was signed up as a distributor, and had already placed my first order of everything used on my face to replace this lady’s products that she so generously let me get in advance. Plus she “helped” me order a few more products that we didn’t try, but she just knew I was going to love and would be kicking myself tomorrow that I didn’t go ahead and order the products, now that I had placed a big enough order to get it at 50% off.

I ordered over $1,000 worth of products that day, and all I went in for was a couple of lipsticks. Funny thing is, I didn’t buy from my co-worker because I didn’t want to be pressured into signing up, and here I was now with all this product and signed up “for personal use”. She assured me she would never pressure me to sell, even though she knew I would be a natural at it because I knew makeup. She could tell I was passionate about skin care, and she knew after I used this for a week I would want to share this with all of my friends — but, no pressure.

To find out what happened to Madison, head on over to the Anti-MLM Coalition website!

*Names have been changed

#SeneGence #LipSense #interview #antiMLMmovement #mlmtruth

AMC_header_new

We're very pleased to announce that The Anti-MLM Coalition is up and running — an international group of writers who are working to explain and expose the practices and abuses of multi-level marketing companies. We Crownless Princesses are proud to be a part of the group. You can also find us on Twitter and Facebook.

The website is a collection of all the anti-MLM resources we can find, with feeds from a ton of blogs, as well as new content written by our members, allies, and guest writers. If you're interested in sharing your story, use the contact form on the site, and someone in the team will be in touch.

#SeneGence #LipSense #antiMLMmovement #MLM #scams #pyramidscheme

It really looks like SeneGence distributors are quitting in droves, and the numbers of orders are dropping, given this ever-so-slightly panicked and bullying post by a Crown Princess.

We're frankly aghast that she's telling her vast downline that to be very successful, they have to order 750 PV every month. NO EXCEPTIONS. (This isn't a requirement from SeneGence, by the way, it's her own speshul rule.)

No_Exceptions1 No_Exceptions2

Do you know how much a 750PV (points value) order costs? It's a lot. Hundreds and hundreds of whichever currency you're working in. In the USA, it's just over $1,000.

It also buys you a shitload of stock. If you were only buying LipSense, that would be 60 tubes of the stuff. SIXTY. TUBES. EVERY. MONTH.

So, who is this REALLY benefitting? Sure as hell ain't our CP's downline. Unless they have a large number of customers, with new ones coming in constantly (cos let's face it, even the keenest customers don't need new cosmetics every month), they're only going to be stockpiling & front loading at a great rate.

They'll end up in debt, and having to offload stock at low prices. That wouldn't happen, would it? Oh wait ... how many 'LipSense Buy/Sell/Trade' groups are there on Facebook? Yeah, we've lost count too 🙄

The ones who are brave enough to voice any concerns about how they can't afford it are told “If money's the issue, then there is no issue.” Get out there and sell stock. And the only reason they can't sell stock is because they told themselves they couldn't. The Secret and Attraction Marketing are big things in SeneGence. The 'science' of these is completely debunked, but as we know, bad science never stopped them before.

But as long as the Cwown Pwincess gets her huge monthly commission payout, does she really care at all about the financial burden she's putting on her downline? We doubt it.

#SeneGence #LipSense #frontloading #bullying #cult #CrownPrincesses #downline

Crownless Princesses

We are joining forces with the Anti-MLM Coalition, a new international group that is pooling resources. Stay tuned for more info and links soon!

#antiMLM #antiMLMmovement #SeneGence #LipSense #MLMactivism #MLM

Disclaimer: These are the personal opinions of distributors and ex-distributors, based on our own experiences. Your experience of SeneGence may be different.

One of the things about cosmetics is find that perfect color for your lips, or eyes, or blush, or skin ... and being able to get that same color for as long as you want it. I know women who have bought the same color from the same brand of lipstick — their favorite — for years. It's their favorite. The color is always the same. That's what they want.

Kiss_Me_Katie2 Both Kiss Me Katie (original on the left)

So — consistent color is important. If you love Bella, then you ought to be able to get more of it, and be certain that the color will be the same.

Bella Not this.

Plum Original Plum on the left (with label removed, cos they're too ugly)

This isn't' just 'a bit annoying'. Distributors have unhappy customers as a result. Here is just one such story:

I signed up in February and I tried to collect all the colors available for testers, and I had over 70 colors. I managed to sell some testers when they dropped the colors down to 36. When I went to a county fair event, I noticed most of my old testers are different than what I was selling, which are the new colors. I refuse to open more new colors for testers when I still have a lot left in my old testers. Now I have a few clients returning what they bought, because it's not the same color.

Pinks (KFAC = Kiss For a Cause. Plus what's with the new batches of different colours now all looking the same?!)

If you look at the ingredients list for LipSense, you can see that the color components are pretty standard cosmetic pigments:

LipSense® & LinerSense™ Alcohol Denat, Acrylates/Octylacrylamide Copolymer, Isostearyl Alcohol, Silica, PPG-20 Methly Glucose Ether, Parfum, Hydroxypropylcellulose, Butylene Glycol, Aqua, Isodonis Japonicus Leaf/Stalk Extract, Hypericum Perforatum (St. John’s Wort) Flower/Leaf/Stem Extract, Paeonia Suffruticosa (Tree Peony) Extract, Tilia Cordata (Linden) Extract, Citronellol, Limonene +/– may contain : CI 77163, CI 77891, CI 77499, CI 77491, CI 77492, CI 45410, CI 17200, CI 15850, CI 19140, CI 42090, CI 45370, CI 77007.

MauveIce

All those CI (Color Index) numbers are different cosmetic pigments.

CI 77163 — bismuth oxychloride, a naturally ocurring iridescent mineral CI 77891 — titanium dioxide, a white inorganic compound CI 77499 — black iron oxide, an inorganic colorant CI 77491 — red iron oxide, an iron-based inorganic colorant CI 77492 — yellow iron oxide, an iron-based inorganic colorant CI 45410 — D&C Red 28, synthetically produced from coal tar or petroleum CI 17200 — D&C Red 33, a coal tar derived colorant CI 15850 — D&C Red 6 Lake, a synthetic red disodium salt of an azo dye CI 19140 — FD&C Yellow 5, a synthetic coal tar derivative CI 42090 — FD&C Blue No. 1, an ammonium salt CI 45370 — D&C Orange No. 5, a synthetic xanthene color CI 77007 — Ultramarine, a mineral-derived blue pigment composed of sodium, aluminum, silicate and sulfate

At first glance, it's hard to know whether these dyes and pigments have any sort of a botanical origin, and it's impossible to know, unless we could have access to the chemical data on the exact brands and origins of colorants that SeneGence is using for colouring LipSense. But a lot of them do appear, at first glance, to be synthetic or mineral in origin.

This Medium article gives an interesting discussion about cosmetic colorants.

Here's the party line: ColorQA

So anyone who questions these significant color changes gets told:

As you know we do use natural colour pigments so no two batches will ever be exactly the same, just like no two pieces of natural wood are ever the same.

A couple of people have posted about this, I've noticed it too. It's to do with the variation in pigmentation of natural ingredients in the product. No two batches can be the same when dealing with nature!

Because we are made on 98% botanical with batches you may get some variations upon the pigments, it’s not noticeable once on the lips more on the hands.

This gives the lovely impression that the LipSense mixologists are squeezing pretty flowers to get the colors. But the reality of mass cosmetic production is that the dyes and pigments used need to be purified, concentrated, and refined. They are fine powders, concentrated liquids, not petals. They need to be able to be carefully and accurately measured.

FireNIce

It's really hard to know the true cause of the color variations. SeneGence has moved to a new manufacturing plant this year, and things such as the pH and temperature in the factory can affect the final product (including staying power and color). It depends on the form and source of the pigments too — are they using pharmaceutical-grade pigments? How pure are they? Have they changed suppliers of their pigments? Are they using powders, or liquids, or mixtures? Are some of the dyes older than others, and does shelf life have an impact? Have they changed the formulas? Has the manufacturing process changed a bit?

Mauve_Ice_Pink_Champagne Those are actually the same color, but supposedly two different colors!

My guess is that the '98% botanicals that vary in color' explanation is the glib response. It would be nice if the company would just be transparent with us, and say “Look, we know the colors are varying a bit, and that you and your customers aren't happy about it. The move to our new manufacturing plant is being a bit challenging.” Or “We have new pigment suppliers and the pigments are a little different. We're doing our best to correct the discrepancies.” These color variations seem to be more pronounced and wide-spread since SeneGence moved manufacturing from Irving ('original' formula) to Foothill Farms ('new' formula). Most distributors prefer stock from Irving.

Fobbing us off with 'stop complaining' and 'because plants' is just annoying. Why can't you tell us the truth?

#LipSense #SeneGence #lipboss #MLM #antiMLMmovement #inconsistencies #qualitycontrol #fail

A few days ago, a sharp-eyed distributor picked up the rather startling similarity between the latest SeneGence flyer advertising their new glittery shimmer eyeliner, and a brochure she picked up from another cosmetic brand, Mahya 🤔

Mahya SG

On further digging, we discovered that the photo in question was indeed a stock photo from Shutterstock.

SS_eyeliner

Now, there’s nothing wrong with using stock photos in many circumstances. Beautiful models with flawless skin can advertise many things. It’s an economical and convenient way to get professional photography. But there are definite ethical issues.

For starters, we’re not happy when these photos are representing a product actually in use, or on the model’s face. The clear intimation in this flyer is that THAT is the brush from the EyeSense, and that is their gold eyeliner. It isn’t.

Your eyeliner style, Capricorn. Some Italian glitter. And Indonesian ...

And the best LOL of them all? Look what they did to the image after their ‘Shutterstockiness’ got out there 😂😂😂. (Your Crown is Plastic helped spread the word, thanks girls.)

Shimmers_take2

A dodgy job of duplicating the gold line (and a bit of the brush LOL, geez guys, get someone with some actual Photoshop training &/or skills).

Two_lines_copy

So — rather than admitting, yes, we use stock photos, and here’s why — they alter the image instead to make it look a tiny bit different, more ridiculous, and worse? Seriously, guys?!

We started to dig further, and goodness gracious me. Look what we found …

Mask SS_Mask (This one complete cracks me up for some reason.)

Blush_Sense SS_Blush_Sense

Dark_Blush SS_Dark_Blush (Photoshop blush — get whatever colour you like with the click of a mouse!)

Lash_Extend SS_Lash_Extend (Note the Shutterstock caption — this model is wearing false lashes!)

Shadow_Sense SS_Shadow_Sense (Just adjust the color balance a bit in Photoshop and you've got a new colour palette!)

Even their videos ... Did you know you can buy video clips from Shutterstock? Yep, you can

This is just the tip of the iceberg, too.

So far as we can see, ALL of SeneGence’s promotional material uses stock photos. Apart from the new distributor-designed colours, like First Love (pictured below), which have photos of the distributors who have designed these colours, presumably provided by them.

First_Love

Stock photos are generally the lazy, cheap or amateur designer’s solution to needing particular photos. A global cosmetics company, that purports to be bringing in ‘billions’, could surely afford to pay a professional photographer to take photos of models actually wearing SeneGence products.

Is that too much to ask? (Apparently it is.)

And even if they are using stock photos, why not pay for exclusive rights so that no-one else can use those images? It is rather disconcerting to see the same images in all sorts of other places.

There are a whole bunch of ethical issues that are raised by this behavior. What is reality? What is advertising? Where do you draw the line?:

“While it is easy to find and purchase high-quality photos, you might alienate readers who think your images are fake or irrelevant if you choose those images poorly.”

YA THINK? Even if the photos have been chosen well, the revelation that they are 'fake' — and NOT any sort of representation of SeneGence products ACTUALLY IN USE — is eroding trust in the company.

Here's some more tips for you SeneGence 'designers':

Don't try to pass stock photography off as real content. All the filters in the world won't mask that overexposed stock photo feeling.

Don't over photoshop stock imagery. The more photoshopping, the less engagement. If the image is a simple set up, purchase the products and take the image yourself.

Do understand your brand's position. If your client sells food, clothing, or something product-based [LIKE COSMETICS] real content is much more successful.

Customers and distributors alike are seriously pissed off by this. We have been lied to (YET AGAIN) — those photos are NOT of women wearing or using SeneGence products.

We'd be happy to hear SeneGence's explanation for this.

Disclaimer: These are the personal opinions of distributors and ex-distributors, based on our own experiences. Your experience of SeneGence may be different.

*Punked: To get punked is to have a joke played on you, often in a public setting. Ref

#SeneGence #LipSense #stockphotos #advertisingfail #scam #MLM #antiMLM #lossoftrust #trustissues