Nu Skin Legitimate Or A Scam? My Review

Nu Skin Enterprises, an American company founded in 1984, who develop and sell personal care products, including a variety of dietary supplements under the Nu Skin and Pharmanex brands. Their mission, improve and enrich the lives of people through the empowerment of their product range.

They have a product range of over 200 products, ranging from personal care to nutritional supplements.

The personal care brands include the likes of spray systems, face treatments, through to body care and hair and cosmetics with many others involved in the range.

Nutritional supplements include weight management and vitamins. Quite an extensive range of products and the company has been around for 35 years. Still, in that time it has run into some headwinds with, The Federal Trading Commission (FTC), regarding the legitimacy of the company.

Nu Skin Enterprises, has developed into one of the world’s largest and most extensive direct selling or multi-level marketing (MLM) companies. They are offering more than 200 skin, hair, oral care, cosmetic wares, among many other lines in the nutritional, weight and agricultural fields.

They operate throughout 41 countries with an estimated 820 thousand distributors who serve as independents.

The company, in 1984, was founded by Blake Roney, his sister Nedra Roney and their friend Sandie Tillotson. Blake Roney bankrolled $5,000 of his savings in a business idea, primarily, to make personal care products that contained “All quality ingredients, and none of the low-quality ingredients; That was, in June 1984, the beginning, and core principle formation of Nu Skin International. In October of that same year, the company became incorporated.

Advertising with limited funds was beyond its means, so, they relied upon growing a network, through the multi-level marketing (MLM) system and employing distributors who would be independent and self-employed. Principally, they were required to sell products on a one-on-one basis, while at the same time recruit others in doing the same.

Initially, the three founders would meet in Nedra Roney’s apartment. Sourcing a company to manufacture its product range, wasn’t easy receiving several rejections.

Finally, they found an Arizona company, willing to make Nu Skin’s first skin and hair product range.

Delivery of the products was in ten-gallon containers. So it had to be transferred into salable size containers.

In the fledgeling days, word of mouth became the norm for spreading the word; And eventually, the business was off and running.

Origins and Early Expansion

Sales, by 1989, were rocketing into double-digit rates every month. So, Nu Skin hired a director to manage the information systems. His priority, choose a computer system that could cope with the demand, and the mailing out of commission checks; Among, many other internal functions.

That was fine, but what they didn’t know what was lurking around the corner were some grave issues.

Legal Challenges Beginning in 1991

Michigan attorney general in March 1991, asked Nu Skin to prove it was not an illegal pyramid scheme or face a lawsuit.

At least four more states that included, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Illinois, and Florida investigated the rapidly growing business, with more than 100,000 distributors throughout the USA, Hong Kong, Canada, and Taiwan.

December of that same year, Nu Skin, acting on the advice of the Direct Selling Association, released a press statement disclosing they had arranged with Michigan whereby they will bolster their buy-back policy. In offering distributors a 90% refund regardless of limit or time of purchase for any unused products and sales aids.

In the absence of admitting any illegal undertaking in its Michigan settlement, they agreed to pay Michigan for its investigative expenses.

On top of that, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) investigated Nu Skin, by ensuring its range of products were safe and labelled; Also, determining if they were making any false claims regarding its products.

August 1997, Federal Trade Commission Civil Penalty. 

“For Release”

“August 6, 1997.”

Nu Skin International, Inc., 

The firm behind an international multi-level marketing system, along with many thousands of distributors marketing skin-care products and nutritional supplements.

Federal Trade Commission pursued Nu Skin for the violation of a 1994 order. Nu Skin agreed to pay a $1.5 million civil penalty to settle with Federal Trade Commission on charges relating to fat-loss, muscle-maintenance, including other claims made regarding supplements containing chromium picolinate and L-carnitine.

Nu Skin Legal Challenges

Source… Federal Trade Commission


Federal Trade Commission also alleged, Nu Skin was not able to produce sufficient verification concerning the claims, therefore had violated a 1994, Federal Trade Commission order. The order requires that a company provide qualified, trustworthy scientific proof in supporting benefits and requests relating to any product/s they offer for sale.

Even though they continue to walk a fine line, they have managed to survive.

Can You Earn Money With Nu Skin?

Well, “YES and NO”. Selling the actual products, you will earn a few dollars, But, if you want to be serious about the business plan, then that involves recruiting other people into the system. The basis of success at Nu Skin is no different to any other MLM scheme; You will only gain advancement if you commit yourself to build a downline and then encourage those new members to repeat the process.



Nu Skin Commission Report

Nu Skin, back in 2013, released a commission report, and because it was some time ago, I’m uncertain of its accuracy. So, I suggest you take it for what it’s worth and at face value.

Below are the statistics from that article:

14.19% – US active distributors, on average, earned a monthly commission cheque. Leaving 85% making no money.

5.38% – Earned an averaged monthly $30, commission cheque.

$176 – Was the median commission for US distributors who were active every month. That equates to a per annum return of $2112 as per the Nu Skin details.

A small yearly return based around these figures may be suitable for some, but certainly not a lot, when you consider it’s for one year of reliable work.

Automatic Delivery Rewards (ADR) 

 What is ADR? Automatic Delivery Rewards.

It’s a program where the distributor, preferred customer or retail customer can receive products every month, including exclusive rewards. They include automatic shipment each month and on your choice of date. Free product points associated with every order purchased every month. Condition worth noting, there is an ADR requirement for every LOI and above distributors to earn bonuses.

Are there any ADR requirements? “YES,” there is, it has a minimum order value of fifty (50), points value (PV). Should your minimum order fall short of the base requirement, then your order is treated as a regular re-order, minus the ADR benefits.

Every individual item has a PV value, so, it will be wise to familiarise yourself with the point value system laid down by Nu Skin.

There is no limit on how many ADR’s you can have, but, shipments for each ADR, is based on a monthly cycle.

There are specific requirement’s with the ADR system; for instance, the holiday – promotional packages not included. However, other lines, in the Nu Skin and Pharmanex brands, are acceptable. Just the same, it would be wise to make yourself aware of any other non-disclosed exclusions.

Can You Cancel Your ADR Account

An ADR account can be suspended or cancelled at any time, but, only utilizing, phone, fax or email. No cancellation will be accepted online, and the cancelling will not attract any penalty, with a confirmation email forwarded to your email address.

Stay Cool Nu Skin

Nu Skin And Joining Fees

Generally speaking, the automatic delivery rewards system is somewhat similar to a monthly membership; And, new members are encouraged to start with this package to receive additional rewards. However, it appears this package will set you back over $100, and that will be your monthly cost each month after that.

Sales Bonuses And Commissions

Both bonuses and commissions are payable only, to active members, so if you don’t reach the required target, then you will not receive the sales bonus.

Below are the levels required:

  • Distributor and qualifying executive distributor 200 L1 volume and five (5) customer sales each month.
  • Executive distributors 2,000 group sales volume and five (5) customer sales each month.

Frankly, this means you’ll need at least five (5) customers, and 200 L1 in volume sales; So, every month your sales volume will need to be somewhere in the vicinity of $200 to $300, for you to earn commissions and sales bonuses, and stay as a qualified active member.

What Are The Ways and Means of Making Money 

I understand there are around six plans for generating an income with Nu Skin. Each program has its individuality with associated rules and payment scheme. The more I look at the variety of regulations, the more confusing it gets.

My observation has me believing that each plan requires a level of understanding. Mainly because the details are not precise, for instance, if you recruit two persons, the rules don’t spell out precisely what your commission will be.

Another strange point that states in the rules, you are required to dispose of 80% of each inventory order before your next order shipment. How Bazzar’s That?

Nu Skin Leader Development

Source… Nu Skin

Is It Possible To Earn $500 Monthly

Well, “YES” it is, but you’ll need to reach the “Gold Executive level to qualify”; And with no surprise, only 1.59% achieve such accomplishment. According to NU Skin’s figures.

Those who are fortunate enough to reach such a level can earn more than $500, however, in reaching the Gold Executive level, what’s required, isn’t quite so transparent.

There is no mention of what are the recruitment requirements or cost to you associated in reaching this level.

It’s a little mind-boggling when you consider that only 1.59% of those who do reach this level generates an income higher than the monthly $500 mentioned.

I’m not saying it’s impossible, but on face value, it looks quite challenging to earn decent money with this system, when you consider that only 1.59% rise to the challenge.

Nu Skin Is It For You?

If you endorse what I’m about to mention, maybe, just maybe, Nu Skin could suit you.

  1. Will you be happy recruiting friends and family using the MLM plan?
  2. Comfortable with a model that is wholly reliant on “chance” in place of an individual product.
  3. Agreeable with a shrouded compensation plan riddled with confusion.
  4. You have tried the products and love them.

If you are untroubled with the above four points, then NuSkin may be your ideal choice.

The company focus is directed toward recruitment, using home get-togethers or meetings in other venues to attract more massive crowds. In most instances, the razzamatazz method used at these meetings is to convince attendees why they need to join.

Nu Skin Pros and Cons


  • Founded in 1984, so, Nu Skin been around for a long time.


  • The products attract all the hype, with little to no solid foundation to support the hype.
  •  Earning money is consumed around the building and growing a downline, with very little toward the product.
  • “FACT yet TRUE”, 85% earn no money.

Final Verdict

This opportunity isn’t entirely focused, on the product, rather a, “selling the opportunity to family and friends” approach.

If you are looking for a fulltime income, then avenues of earning an income from this scheme are quite slim.

My personal opinion it is not worth wasting time and energy chasing your dreams with Nu Skin.

Is NuSkin A Scam?

I’ll leave that up to you to decide; But, if you are looking to earning a fulltime income online, then my #1 recommendation is worthwhile for beginners, and even more experienced marketers looking to generate an online income.

Are You Up To Starting Your Own Affiliate Marketing Business

Nu Skin Legitimate Or A Scam? My Review






Quality Overall



  • Personal care And Dietry Supplements
  • Selling In 41 Countries
  • Six Tier Compansation Plan


  • No Solid Foundation To Support Product Claims
  • Recruitment Based
  • Under FTC Watch

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