Is Arbonne a Pyramid Scheme

Is Arbonne A Pyramid Scheme Or A Real Business Opportunity?

Is Arbonne A Pyramid Scheme Or A Real Business Opportunity? First of all, Arbonne is indeed a legitimate company. Because the company uses the Multi-Level Marketing (MLM) business model, some people are always asking: Is Arbonne A Pyramid Scheme Or A Real Business Opportunity?

Author’s Note: In case you have an interest in learning how to start an online business, Wealthy Affiliate offers a free 7-day mini course that provides you with an awesome introduction. Just Click This Link And You Are In.

“The secret of change is to focus all your energy not on fighting the old but on building the new.” (Socrates, father of Western philosophy)

Complaint Filed

Point in fact, a couple in Texas really believe that the company is a pyramid scheme. Sure enough, they filed a complaint in 2017. Is Arbonne A Pyramid Scheme Or A Real Business Opportunity? Truth is that the “Class Action Lawsuit” was dismissed on March 20, 2018.” You can read the lawsuit story here.

Time and time again, you hear that the MLM business is a great opportunity to make money. Needless to say, the freedom it gives you to cancel out a 9 to 5 job. Before joining one of these companies however, it is important to research whether the company is running a Pyramid Scheme.

Related: The Work at Home Business Review: Does Wealthy Affiliate Work?

Is Arbonne A Pyramid Scheme Or A Real Business Opportunity?

Company: Arbonne International

Country: California, USA 

International Offices: In Australia, Canada, New Zealand, Poland, United Kingdom

Method of Selling: Person To Person

Business Model: Multi-Level Marketing (MLM)

Key Products: Cosmetics, Personal Care, Wellness

Headquarters: Irvine, California

Year Founded: 1980


Notably, the company’s income of $553 million put them in #40 position in 2018 (out of 100 direct sales companies). Then again in 2019, a whopping $544 million rank them at #28 spot. (source: Direct Selling News)

Related: Ultimate Direct Sales Companies List (120 To Choose From)

Certainly, the possibility is there to earn money if you join the Arbonne business opportunity. However, you can prepare to go through the same conventional process of direct selling. 

Traditional Selling and Recruiting

That is to say, you need to recruit people to join the business. Not to mention hosting parties to introduce the products, do a few give-aways and convince people to make purchases. Primarily, this is how you’ll earn commissions. Usually, there are a few other perks through which you can also earn commissions.

Nevertheless, my experience with the business model is not good. I don’t relish the method. Neither do I recommend it. Instead, I do recommend this business model that I truly benefit from.

Related: My Experience at Wealthy Affiliate

High Drop Out Rate

Why do so many people drop out of the MLM business model early? Either they underestimate the work to get recruits and sales, or a part of the business model is missing. Generally, many people always try to find something else

“Tomorrow is too late. Yesterday is over. Now is exactly the right moment to start.” (anonymous)

Together with “innovative scientific discovery” and botanical ingredients Arbonne puts emphasis on “healthy living.” Both on the inside and the outside. Surprisingly, some of Arbonne’s products are on Amazon.

Although Arbonne claims to be one of the top companies to offer healthy living products, some people may defer. Keep in mind that there are many other direct sales companies offering similar products: “Natural, organic, non-toxic, science-based, clinically-tested” are typical claims. 

Related: Ultimate Direct Sales Companies List (120 To Choose From)


On the positive side, here are some key points to note.

  • Over 40 Years In Business

Quite noticeable is the long history this company has been in the direct sales business. Definitely, it wouldn’t be in business this long as a pyramid scheme. Matter of fact, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) would close the business years ago.

  • Has Accreditation

From Better Business Bureau the company has an A+ rating. Besides, it is also a member of Direct Selling Association (DSA). Having this kind of accreditation is assurance that the company is not operating a scam business or pyramid scheme.

  • No Inventory Necessary

A replicated website can help directly with sales. Best of all, you don’t need to carry an inventory. Whenever customers place an order, Arbonne ships the products directly to the specific address. 

  • Offers Cruelty Free Products 

Focusing on “sustainable practices,” the company claims that it operates a “100% cruelty-free” business. 

  • Selling Consumable Products

Clearly, these are products people use on a regular basis. As a result, some people may need a replenishment within a short time. Without a doubt, this is a great way to keep sales going. Unless customers decide to try a different company. 

  • Operates Worldwide (in 7 countries) 

Obviously, having a website means that you can reach more people 24/7. Seeing that the company is in several countries open the opportunity for more sales. 

“When you find an idea that you just can’t stop thinking about, that’s probably a good one to pursue.” (Josh James) 

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More Pros

  • Low Start-up Fee

Only $49 can get you going with this company. Let me hasten to say that alone won’t do the business. Apart from the registration fee, there are other costs. Like annual renewal fees.

  • Get 35% – 50% Off Product Purchases

Automatically, you can get 35% – 50% off all your personal purchases. Along with that, there is a “revenue kick-back” when you order from your own replicate website. 

  • Earns B Corporation (B Corp) Certification

Markedly, this company prides itself in caring about the earth. Committing to “strong environmental” practices of sustainability, the company now has proof of certification. (source: Direct Selling News)

  • Eco-Friendly Products

Focusing on environmentally friendly products, the company uses an infusion of “natural and botanical ingredients.” Specifically, the aim is to help consumers as well as the earth. Equally significant is that all the materials the company uses can reduce carbon footprints, recycle and reuse. Accordingly, all the packaging materials and even the inks that they use are ideal for recycling.

Other Pros

  • Offers 35% Commission

Being an independent consultant, you can earn 35% commission on all your retail sales. Moreover, there are other earning perks. 

  • Ongoing Business Training And Support

Getting this support can help your business grow.

  • Earn Free Products

Whether it’s a car or a vacation, the claim is that you can definitely earn these.

  • Money Back Guarantee

“A 45-day money-back guarantee is offered on all Arbonne products to Clients (including Preferred Clients). Clients not completely satisfied may return the purchased products to their Arbonne Independent Consultant for a replacement or full refund within 45 days from the Client purchase date.” (source:

“There is no success without commitment and action.” (Vantel Pearls)


  • Pricey products

Evidently, the products are on the pricey side. Take for instance the Arbonne Bio-Hydria Herbal Tea which costs $18. Most notable is that there are only 20 tea bags in the pack. Energy Fizz Sticks (pack of 30) cost $55. Protein shake mix cost $77. Just to name a few.

  • Recruiting List

Making a list of 100 people (mainly family and friends) is the usual target for potential consumers. Expectation is that, they will most likely become new members of the company too. How realistic is this method of recruiting? Given this method, some people readily think that the company operates a pyramid scheme.

  • Replicated Website

Ideally, it’s best to have your own unique link, not a duplicate. With a replicate website, there isn’t much you can do. Optimization of a duplicate website is low. After all, it’s not really your own website, so there is no freedom for any extras to earn otherwise.

  • High Competition

Undoubtedly, the products are quite competitive. Other companies have a similar approach about healthy living. Commonly, they refer to the holistic approach to beauty and wellness. 

Comparable to other companies, many of them claim that they also use “scientific research and innovative discovery” to create their products. Regardless of the quality, they also refer to the high quality ingredients. Among other things is that they meet safety standards. Like having no parabens, phthalates and common allergens in their products. 

Registration Fee Misconception

Upon registering, there is a $49 fee that each independent consultant pays. Following that, there is an additional $20 to upgrade as a “preferred client.” Basically, this offers a 20% discount off “Suggested Retail Price (SRP) on all products all the time.” 

Noticeably, “all the time” is only for a 12-month period. Thereafter, a $29 renewal fee is due. Also, you have to meet the company’s qualifying volume (QV). Adding up everything may be more than what you bargain for. Below is the company’s stipulation.

“Special introductory offers with your registration order: 
Complimentary product when your registration order is 250 QV or more 
When your order is 500 QV or more, you’ll receive free shipping on your entire order including your Starter Kit.

$29 Renewal Fee 
Exclusive Renewal Offer: Complimentary product when your renewal order is 250 QV or more” 


Considering this, it may put you in a situation where you are spending more and earning less. Excepting that you are really selling and making a profit of course.

Concluding Thoughts

Still wondering: Is Arbonne A Pyramid Scheme Or A Real Business Opportunity? Overall, if you choose to join, you will be working with a legitimate company. Can you network well and recruit people? Depending on how much effort you put into your business, you can earn some money. 

Often, some people don’t really make the income they’d like. Becoming an Arbonne independent consultant requires finding the best strategy for success. Anything that will work for you: Social media, person to person sales, videos, website, whatever it takes to get sales. 

Albeit, you may not get in the forefront for a leadership position fast enough. Yet, it is achievable. Remember, you can still earn an income with additional rewards if you are not in leadership.

There Is An Alternative

Noting that the expenses can be pressuring, direct sales isn’t going to fit everyone’s pocket. Surely, there is an alternative with no product limitations, no person to person sales, and no hosting of parties. Simply, there is no recruiting or monthly purchases. Training is available here. And it is free. 

“Don’t worry about funding if you don’t need it. Today it’s cheaper to start a business than ever.” (Noah Everett)

Hope you are happy with your experience at If you have any questions, concerns or suggestions please let us know. Feel free to share this page or leave a comment. 


P. S. Sign Up For My #1 Recommended Training Course And Learn How To Start Your Online Business For FREE. 

“If you don’t try, you forfeit the opportunity.” (Frank Sonnenberg)

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14 thoughts on “Is Arbonne A Pyramid Scheme Or A Real Business Opportunity?”

  1. This is really an insightful post and I am sure that this article will be of great help to so many people just as it has really being of great help to me. This is a great article on Arbonne and to know if it is a pyramid scheme. Reviews that are this detailed and explicit does not come by easily.

  2. First of all, I would like to say thanks for posting such a wonderful article for us. This article is extremely important to me because when I have gone through your article, I gained knowledge about MLM business. Yes, I want to say that the MLM system is most significant because of the 9-5 job. Also, I have gone through your website and got some beautiful products.  

    I will share this article with my friends so that they can gain some knowledge about MLM. And I will provide your link if they need any product they can buy from here.

  3. Md. Asraful Islam

    Thank you so much for sharing with us a beautiful and informative article. After reading your article I realized that this is not a pyramid scheme but a legacy company. It is truly remarkable that you have presented this topic so well. I have learned a lot by reading your article and gained a lot of knowledge about it. Of the points mentioned in your article, I like its Ongoing Business Training And Support. In my opinion, Arbonne is a solid business opportunity and not a pyramid scheme. The problem that most network marketers run into is they fish in the wrong pond. If you’re looking to sell a high-quality product and you appreciate the idea of recruiting others to build passive income, you might want to check out Arbonne.
    Finally, I enjoyed reading your article so I’d like to share it in my Facebook group if you give me permission.

  4. First of all, thank you so much for sharing such an informative post. I have been looking for information like this for a long time. I have a great interest in Arbonne and really want to know if the Business Opportunity is real. The thought of joining this business has always been in my head. Now that it seems to be safe, my whole idea of not signing up has changed. I have learned many new things from this post.

    Once again, thanks for sharing this information. I will share the post with others. 😊

    1. Hi Shamiimbd,

      Good to know this post helped to clarify your concerns about the business opportunity. Hope it will work out well for you.

  5. For me, the replicated sites and recruiting would drive me away from Arbonne. Like any MLM company, they rely on recruiting and I would falter under that kind of business model. I believe those who are naturally extroverted, who are good sellers, and those looking to legitimately earn a full-time living in this field are best equipped for an opportunity like Arbonne, or any company like them. Not for me, personally, but there are people out there who would thrive. 

    1. Hi Todd,

      I really don’t like recruiting either. I remember getting in the MLM business years ago and the replicated website was a total failure. No doubt, it is better to have your very own website. Despite the odds, there are so many people who still sell with this company.

  6. Arbonne is definitely one of the best network marketing companies out there. Ordinarily, the mlm business is a turn off to most bloggers and even me. But I can say that Arbonne is good for anyone willing to bank on their selling skills and recruitment. I have friends who have joined this business and seem to be doing well. Thank you

    1. Hi Rodarrick,

      The MLM business opportunity is definitely not for everyone. Those who really like this model will do well, no doubt.

  7. Thank you for sharing this post. I enjoyed reading it a lot. The whole article is so informative. I definitely find it useful. The debate on Arbonne was fair enough I think. The lawsuit link given here, I recommend those who want to join the business to read it. As it is a business over 40 years I think it should be great. Moreover it offers consumable products. Also a low start up fee makes it attractive.

    I will surely share this post to my social media accounts so that everyone can know about it.

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