How MLMs Ruin Friendships – My 100% Honest Nerium Review

By Ian | Negative Reviews

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If you’re reading this post someone is probably trying to recruit you into Nerium, and you’re trying to figure out if the product is any good, whether or not it’s a scam, and possibly even if you’re experiences thus far are common company-wide. In this 100% honest Nerium review I’m going to share my real-life experiences with the company and the product, and hopefully help you decide whether or not promoting or buying Nerium is right for you.

I don’t usually review MLMs here on StoppingScams — the closest I usually come are products like Empower Network a.k.a. iPAS2 and Digital Altitude.

I am not a Nerium Brand Partner, and I don’t make any money selling the product. I’m just an honest guy on the internet doing my best to make sure people can find truthful, unbiased information about work-at-home opportunities when they need it.

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Why I’m Creating this Post in the First Place

Long story short: Instead of becoming a Nerium Brand Partner, per the repeated pestering of a long-time friend, I focused on building an independent, full-time internet business.

I now provide for myself and my family very comfortably, and teach everyone that’s willing to work hard how to do the same 100% free-of-charge (no opt-in or registration required):

I spent over two months evaluating Nerium’s product, company, and sales training because a friend of mine that’s been very successful in another network marketing company made the switch to promoting Nerium and was very excited about the way the company was run and their compensation model. He also assured me that the company was very young and I was getting in pretty close to the ground-level, which is the Holy Grail of MLM opportunity.

Unfortunately, I still haven’t decided whether or not this person is my “friend” anymore. We’ve known each other for almost ten years and always swapped entrepreneurial news/interests and caught up every few weeks on each other’s businesses and how they were doing. It was a healthy, inspiring relationship.

Texting between my Nerium friend and I

My friend’s recruiting numbers: Less than 2 in 100 earning a Lexus
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Ever since I expressed the slightest interest in reviewing Nerium and considering promoting it, our friendship has quickly changed. I feel more like a savory, mouth-watering sales prospect than a friend and our relationship has changed to a rigid, “let me send you a piece of network marketing news every couple of weeks” acquaintance rather than something that’s mutually beneficial and no-pressure.

I won’t share this person’s name because I still hope to continue being friends someday and I respect him as a businessperson, but he is one of the top recruiters for Nerium (as he was in his last MLM organization) and there is a decent chance that readers of this review are being recruited by the same person due to the sheer volume of recruits he’s signing up.

And before I go any further, I have made very clear to my friend that I am no longer interested in Nerium but I continue to be followed-up with and treated like a sales prospect. This isn’t a situation where I started dodging him for no reason and didn’t communicate properly – I expressed my concerns and clearly said “I’m not interested” but he will not let up, which seems to be rather common across Nerium’s Brand Partner network from what I’ve read online.

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My Initial Concerns: The Product’s Validity

I have a very firm rule that I do not give on at all, whatsoever – if a product isn’t excellent, I will not promote it. I don’t care how much someone pays me. If I can’t believe in the product, then I won’t try to convince anyone else to believe in it either. I expressed this to him immediately, and he referred me to a Nerium-funded research study. If you know what you’re doing, you can hire a research company to say almost anything you want them to say, so I had to dig further.

I tried the product myself (my friend mailed me a sample) and, although I’m only 26 at the time of writing this review, I have very subtle crow’s feet from too much smiling and laughter (a “problem” I’m happy to have) which I saw improve over the 5-day Nerium trial period. There could be a lot of reasons for this, however, so I kept on digging.

The first place I turned to was, since I’ve found that their reviews are usually pretty dependable. The product only had a 3.5 star rating, which at first seems fairly acceptable until you factor in the fact that this data is skewed and not completely unbiased.

Amazon customer rating of Nerium Night and Day Cream

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When you’re shopping for, say, a phone case on Amazon, you can pretty much trust the rating because the product owner and their friends/family can only leave so many reviews, giving you the peace of mind that almost all of the reviewers have no ties to the company. This is not the case for Nerium. Every Brand Partner’s business is affected by this rating, therefore many of them are absolutely going to log on and review the product positively since they’re selling it.

So I decided to do even more digging, and quickly found this review from a site run by a couple of doctors that I found very balanced, well-researched, and informative. I also noticed many commenters were experiencing the same high-pressure sales from friends and family members as I was, leading me to believe this has something to do with Nerium’s sales training. Then I found a San Francisco news report that made me raise an eyebrow as well. I also found another doctor negatively reviewing the product on her site which raised even more serious concerns for me.

It seemed like everything I was finding not produced by Nerium or one of their Brand Partners cast serious doubt on the validity of the product. Even if it produces short-term results that continue as long as you’re using the product, it can be due to irritation/inflammation of the skin which isn’t necessarily healthy.

I found a lot of concerning information in this stage of my review, but I kept digging and talking with my friend about the company.

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The Nerium Success Pack and Training

As I mentioned, my friend is pretty well connected and respected within this company so he pulled a few strings and sent me the training/documentation from Nerium’s Success Pack, which I’m very glad I didn’t spring the $500 minimum for. I’m not glad because the training wasn’t impressive, I’m just glad because I ultimately decided the company was not a good fit for me and I wasn’t out $500 as a result.

Nerium's Success Pack bundle

There’s a lot of stuff included. There’s Nerium order forms, self-development audiobooks, information on hosting your Nerium party/opportunity presentation, etc… My friend is an experienced network marketer and he said that he’s never seen a company set their Brand Partners up for success so well, which I don’t doubt, but I still wasn’t able to get past the negative information I had uncovered about the product.

Everything included in the Success Pack

Nerium’s Success Pack unbundled
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A Slightly Less Confusing Compensation Plan

One thing that I really liked about Nerium vs. my friend’s old MLM (which he approached me about as well) was how much easier the compensation plan was to explain. If you do this, you get a free iPad. If you do this next, you get a “free” Lexus (I place free in quotation marks because this is a lease that they’re paying for right now, if you dip below a certain volume you’re still in contract for that Lexus). If you get to that level, you should have approximately $X,XXX in monthly income due to your volume alone.

Nerium's Lexus Bonus program details

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I liked that, but I can’t explain how unwavering I am in my belief of not promoting a bad product no matter what I’m compensated with. You could pay me thousands of dollars for every person I sign up and I still won’t promote the company if I don’t believe the product and company are setting my referrals up for success.

Coming Full-Circle, Nerium’s High-Pressure Sales Tactics

Ultimately it wasn’t solely the lack of unbiased, positive reviews and research studies that pushed me out of seriously considering Nerium – my friend/Brand Partner did a lot of the work too. I clearly expressed that I had discussed it with my wife and that, due to the fact that I was inexperienced with MLM/network marketing, I was choosing to stay the course with my already successful internet marketing business and other, non-MLM entrepreneurial ventures.

I also expressed a serious concern about damaging relationships I have with friends and family members by going “warm-market”, which prompted him to tell me that we didn’t need to go warm market and we could still figure it out (which was very different than his previous recommendation that I should absolutely go warm-market and approach friends/family members).

As I shared earlier from one of our text conversations, my friend continued to try to use his success within the company to persuade me to sign up under him. An existing Brand Partner’s success has nothing to do with what level of success you will achieve. In my friend’s case, he has about a six year head start on me regarding the network marketing industry so to expect those kinds of results would be ludicrous.

Texting between my Nerium friend and I

My friend’s recruiting numbers: Less than 2 in 100 earning a Lexus
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Telling me that you have recruited over 400 people and only 7 of them have earned a “free” Lexus does not incentivize me to promote this company. He’s in a great position with a very highly positioned mentor that is passing him referrals as well, so presenting these numbers has absolutely no bearing on how much I will make if I join the company. It may cause other people to get excited, but I’ve had enough business experience over the years to know that another entrepreneur’s success with their developed skill set does not indicate any future success if I tried my hand at the same business/industry.

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Besides, having less than 2 people out of 100 achieve the most heavily preached goal within the company is fairly bleak in my opinion. If I join a company for $500-$1,000 and encourage the others to do the same, but 98 out of 100 of them don’t achieve the most heavily incentivized goal and possibly lose money and/or damage relationships – I’m personally failing A LOT of people, and I’ve avoided promoting other products in the past for this exact reason.

Since my long-time friend was now only contacting me with more reasons to join Nerium, I stopped replying to his communication. I’d made my choice clear, and unfortunately he was not respecting it. Now our conversations are completely one-sided, where my friend just sends me periodic updates and articles that try to get me excited about running an MLM business.

Today's conversations with my friend

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What It All Came Down To, and What I Decided In the End

As I’ve mentioned a couple of times in this post, due to the high-pressure sales pitch I was receiving from my long-term friend and what the unbiased information I could find on the product was indicating, I ultimately decided promoting Nerium was not for me. I didn’t want to damage relationships the way my friend has recently damaged ours, and I couldn’t find enough credible, unbiased information to convince me that the product was as legitimate and safe as the company claims.

Remember, just because someone you know or someone you’ve met is doing well with Nerium is not at all an indicator of your future success with the company. Just because the company is growing rapidly does not indicate that the product is incredible – that can be artificially created by a high-paying commission structure and high-pressure sales tactics. Just because you hear about a trip to Cancun or someone earning a free Lexus does not in any way predict whether or not you and your referrals will be successful within Nerium.

Ultimately I couldn’t determine the product’s safety and effectiveness through credible third party medical verification. In addition to that, even my friend with 6+ years in network marketing/MLM had less than 2 out of 100 people earning a “free” Lexus, how much could a new network marketer like me really set my referrals up for success?

Just because I can make money selling this product and opportunity to other people was not enough. Since I couldn’t fully verify that I would be selling a 100% medically vetted, safe product through sources outside of Nerium’s network and I couldn’t be sure that the opportunity I was selling would set others up for success, I personally passed on endorsing and promoting this product.

I hope you’ve found this information helpful, and I wish you all the best of success with your business ventures within and outside of Nerium International.

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Share Your Thoughts Below! But Please Be Respectful

I’ve been really surprised by some of the disrespectful, visceral, flat-out hateful comments that people within Nerium’s network have left on anything that doesn’t sing the company’s praises. I love open dialogue and hearing other perspectives, but please keep your comments relevant to the Nerium review above and respectful. If so, I will approve and reply to them even if they’re contradictory to my opinions.

Thank you all for stopping by! Stay safe out there!

About the Author

I've been in internet marketing for over 10 years, and I've purchased dozens of illegitimate products for the sole purpose of evaluating them and exposing the truth about these products to anyone who's thinking about purchasing it. I never let money influence my rating of a product and your success/safety is my absolute highest priority. Don't want to buy a product? Register for one of my 100% free internet marketing training courses>>

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