In the process of moving, I've done a lot of paring down in my wardrobe. My eventual goal is to create a capsule wardrobe full of interchangeable items with limited pieces. Honestly, I'm not trying to be chic or stylish - I'm just trying to avoid Mount Laundry. One of the first things to go was anything I owned from LuLaRoe. I'm a mom - let's be honest, you're probably a mom, too. And if you aren't wearing leggings - you're not living your best life, love. Get that mama legging game ON.
I had a few reasons why I parted ways with the printed leggings and cute skirts I'd bought. They were incredibly comfortable and fit really well, and I felt good about supporting my #girlboss friends when I purchased from them. Unfortunately, since I'd bought those pieces, LuLaRoe had endured some pretty negative publicity. A few "bad apple" consultants went rude and rogue, and LuLaRoe didn't do the best job handling the scandal.
But what's even more damning is that LuLaRoe is a multi-level marketing company, otherwise known as an MLM. MLMs are defined as direct sales business with independent retailers. A key identifier is that MLM representatives are encouraged (or required) to recruit other retailers to join their downline. The sales of those representatives create commissions that are paid to the person who recruited them.
Since MLM reps are encouraged to recruit, they often use aggressive sales and marketing techniques that can be off-putting in the best of circumstances. When you combine that aggression with social media, things get ugly - fast. Lots of MLM reps end up alienating their friends and family because they insert themselves into inappropriate situations to try to sell their swill. (I'll pause here and say that most MLM products have comparable or better products in the commercial retail market, so yes, I'll call it swill.) I've personally seen Young Living representatives tell people that they could cure their cancer with essential oils. That's an incredibly cruel lie, by the way.
Let's be honest - social media isn't the time or place to see your products. If you own an actual small business, and you want to use social media to build out your brand - go for it! Knock yourself out! But Facebook isn't the place to push subpar products on people you love. Keep doing that, and they'll turn into people that don't want to associate with you.
LuLaRoe is a particularly atrocious example of MLM companies taking advantage of their representatives. When most of these representatives were recruited to join the team, the buy-in was intense. LuLaRoe requires representatives to purchase their own inventory. In their early days, LuLaRoe would buy inventory back from reps that decided to close up shop. Last year, the company changed this policy - now, LuLaRoe would only purchase back inventory that was unopened. In addition, the company will only ensure a buyback of 90% of the inventory, not 100%. To add insult to injury, consultants now have to pay for shipping on the items they're returning when they leave the business. I find it unethical to pull a switcheroo on people; LuLaRoe promised their reps the world, and then went back on their word.
So yes, I got rid of my LuLaRoe when I started winnowing down my clothes. I don't want to support a company that treats its employees so poorly, or that defends the bad behavior of its representatives. And I can do them one better - I learned how to sew my own leggings. With a simple pattern (Peg Legs) and a specific type of fabric (double-brushed poly), I've got my own buttery soft leggings - without any of the icky feelings from backing an MLM. It's win-win for my capsule wardrobe goals, too! I definitely can't sew as fast as I can open my PayPal.