This post focuses on a specific type of health and wellness company. These companies all promote products with a single special or unique ingredient. For example, Forever Living offers various aloe products that are meant to be revolutionary. Not all companies here focus on aloe though. Some focus on mushrooms, moringa, CBD oil, and a bunch of others things you might not think could be the focus on a direct sales company.
The health and wellness industry is thriving, so these are all potential opportunities to make money. However, there are some big red flags to watch out for when selecting network marketing companies claiming health benefits.
In most cases, there is some evidence for the effects of the ingredient, whatever it happens to be. However, what's typical is that these claims are blown out of proportion by inexperienced sales people in the company hoping to get rich. Like with essential oil companies claiming to relive chemo pain or even cure cancer, it's a very fine line to walk when selling these products. Did that CBD cream really cure your arthritis or did the placebo take the edge off?
Very often you'll get highly mixed reviews, with some folks claiming 100% satisfaction, and others calling it a sham. The same goes for weight loss programs for that matter.
But, the companies aren’t a complete write-off. From a sales perspective, a special ingredient makes sense. You get to promote something that people can’t simply buy in a regular store. There are also fewer companies promoting that specific ingredient, so you have an edge in the market. Where else can you buy a moringa shake or mushroom coffee?
The lack of proof doesn’t always matter either. There are many different plants and herbs out there. Most haven’t been researched in depth.
While we can’t prove that they promote health, there isn’t much evidence that they don’t either. Plus, as critical as I am of direct sales health products, the supplement industry isn't any better. People sell brain pills (nootropics) all the time and there are many satisfied customers in that niche!
Whatever you decide to promote, my suggestion is to make sure you try the products for yourself. You’re always going to have better success promoting something that you’re passionate about – especially if you see benefits for your health. Just be sure to not over-hype the effect.
This is literally how “snake oil” came about; people selling useless health products making ridiculous claims about it.
Special Ingredient Network Marketing Companies
- Zija International
- Forever Living
- Prime My Body
- Gano Excel
- Focus: Aronia
- Minimum Cost: $39.95 (for an electronic business kit)
Product Overview: For Lifebrook, the focus is entirely on aronia. They call this ‘American’s Own Superfruit’ and it’s a natural wild berry, similar to a blueberry. Aronia is meant to offer a wide range of benefits, including joint health, immune system support and improved memory.
Some of these claims may even be accurate. Like most berries, aronia will be a source of antioxidants. Those compounds have been associated with various health benefits.
Even so, aronia is far from unique. There are many high antioxidant products out there, including products like tart cherry juice, which are very easy to find. The main selling point of aronia is simply that people won’t have heard about it. The products might taste good too, but that’s about it.
For the right audience, the marketing and unusual nature of aronia might be enough. But, if your potential customers are more skeptical, sales may be more difficult to make.
There is also a limited selection and the items aren’t cheap. Their VITRONIA Daily (an aronia berry, multivitamin and mineral supplement) costs $39.95. PURONIA-CP (a powdered drink mix that acts as a supplement) costs $59.95. PURONIA (a juice-based supplement) costs $129.95 for four bottles of 24.5 fl. oz each.
Commission Quick View: Lifebrook emphasizes online sales, through a replicated website. The base compensation rate is 20% at all levels. This is paid weekly – as a discount or a rebate. There is also a bonus on first orders.
Lifebrook has a Preferred Customer program as well. You receive a bonus based on the number of Preferred Customers that you have enrolled and their orders. But, the amount of compensation per order appears to be relatively small.
There are also activity requirements. You need $103 in business volume each month to receive the bonuses. This may not apply if you just want sales but it is a high target to reach.
The team aspect makes use of a unilevel compensation plan. This is the most common model for MLMs and is structured roughly like a pyramid. People you recruit directly go on your first level. Anyone they recruit goes on your second level and so on. You then earn a percentage of the success from each of those levels.
The amount you earn is different from one company to the next. But most (including this one) use a rank-based system. As you increase in the ranks, you can earn from more levels below you. Various bonuses are often included and the higher ranks have the chance to earn from entire groups below them.
The largest challenge is actually progressing through those ranks. Each new rank has extra requirements and most people don’t get very far.
In this case, you start off earning 4% from your first level and it progresses from there. The rates are somewhere in the middle for the industry. I’ve seen higher options and lower ones.
Final Thoughts: Compensation-wise, Lifebrook is a little below average but it could still be effective. The real question is whether the products match your audience.
2. Zija International
- Focus: Moringa oleifera
- Minimum Cost: $129 initially, then $149 (for membership only)
Product Overview: For Zija International, the ingredient of choice is Moringa oleifera. This is a tree that has some history in traditional medicine. Various sites talk about health benefits from the Moringa tree and extracts, such as nutrition and antioxidant content.
Potential benefits include decreased blood sugar levels, lower inflammation and decreased cholesterol. But, as always, evidence of significant health benefits is very limited. Most of the observed impacts come from animal studies, not human ones.
Still, the potential allows Zija International to build up hype. The company offers a range of different products that contain Moringa extract, including a water purification system (which is a little odd).
Most of the products are unique to Zija International but you’ll see similar styles with other companies. Many are expensive too. For example, a 30-pack of Core Moringa Premium Tea costs $60. That’s $2 for a cup of tea!
There are few reviews. But, the products are likely to work for some people (even if that’s just due to the placebo effect) and not for others. Selling them would be possible but you’d need to be passionate about them.
Zija International does offer some other items that are less controversial, such as personal care products and essential oils. That does give you an edge over some of the other companies on this list.
Commission Quick View: Compensation can be as much as 20% and is based on the difference between retail and distributor price. You earn this when customers order from the company and when you buy and resell products. The exact percentage will vary from one product to the next.
The team aspect uses a binary compensation model. This is less common than the unilevel design and is more complicated. You basically have two teams under you (called legs) and each of these has multiple levels. People are placed in teams by you or by the company. You earn commissions based on how the teams perform.
For Zija International, members earn 10% of the Commissionable Volume (CV) from the lesser of their two teams. To get this, the lesser leg has to hit 500 CV. You also need at least one distributor with 150 Personal Volume in that lesser leg and one with 75 PV in the main leg.
10% sounds like a decent amount – but you’re only earning from one of those two legs. You’re also earning from whichever one doesn’t perform as well. The model is exceptionally difficult to optimize, as you need two decent teams, each of which has at least once high-powered distributor.
The CV to dollars ratio varies depending on the product but it’s never great. For example, their Moringa Plant Pro Bar costs $49 wholesale ($65 retail) and is worth 30 CV. As such, meeting the team requirements consistently would be difficult.
Final Thoughts: Even if you love the products, Zija International isn’t amazing. Making money is still possible but the team model is far from ideal.
- Focus: Noni
- Minimum Cost: $35 (membership fee)
Product Overview: Morinda actually has a range of products, including skin care items, essential oils, lipstick and lip balm. But, they strongly focus on their Tahitian Noni Juice line. This contains seven different products. Three of these are types of juice, while another three are formulations designed to promote specific outcomes. For example, TruAge Max ($190 for four 750 ml bottles) contains various ingredients designed to protect against damage from advanced glycation end-products.
The final product is a concentrated version of the juice. That one costs $170 for a four pack of 250 ml bottles.
So, the products certainly aren’t cheap. What about the proposed benefits?
Like the other products on this list, the evidence simply isn’t there. Some people will swear by the juice and say that it’s amazing. But honestly, that doesn’t mean very much. I suspect that there are some general health benefits, they just won’t be much better than other similar juices.
Commission Quick View: The compensation plan for Morinda is odd. They provide a one-page summary that offers details about the team process but little about how much you earn from sales.
The only mention is a 20% rebate on your own purchases, if you order more than 120 QV per month. I assume that’s a measure of volume but there’s no mention of how that converts financially. The rebate suggests that you’re meant to buy and then resell the products. But, with no further details available, it’s not clear whether this is the case.
As for team earnings, the system is a variation on a unilevel plan. At the first rank, you earn 1% on your Level 1, 5% on your Level 2 and 5% on your Level 3. That’s pretty impressive actually. The percentages increase from there. They end up being higher than many other MLMs.
But, you’re always just earning 1% from your first level, which sucks. Most people will never get past the early stages of the company, which means many of their recruits will be in the first level. As a result, the plan dramatically limits income potential.
Morinda also uses dynamic compression, but never bothers to explain how they’re defining this or what it means. Finally, there is a personal volume requirement of $120 (plus shipping) per month. That’s a high requirement, especially if you’re not making many sales.
Final Thoughts: There’s nothing exciting going on here and the ongoing requirements really are too high. When you combine that with the price of the juice, the company looks even less appealing.
4. Forever Living
- Focus: Aloe vera
- Minimum Cost: No joining fee
Product Overview: Forever Living has a range of different products but many of them are associated with aloe vera. Their website even calls it ‘The Lifeblood of Forever’ and talks about how it has ‘magical soothing properties’.
Now, in fairness, aloe vera is soothing. That’s why it is used in so many creams. But, that doesn’t mean that drinking aloe vera gel directly from the plant is a good plan. Forever Living actually sells Forever Aloe Vera Gel, which is meant to be the closest thing to doing exactly that. Ick.
There are many other products too, including typical weight management items, supplements, skincare products, essential oils and more. Most of these are pretty commonplace, although there are some more unusual ones in the mix.
At the end of the day, the products might be beneficial and they might not. Whether they’re worth it really depends on whether you like them, along with whether you can convince other people.
Commission Quick View: At the basic level, Forever Living looks like every other MLM. You initially earn 15% profit on all sales (which isn’t great). That comes from buying and reselling products, or from selling them on a replicated website. This increases to 30% once you hit a sales goal and become Wholesale Qualified.
After this, the compensation plan gets a little more unusual.
First, you earn 15% compensation from anyone you recruit directly and anyone they’re selling too. You only get this for a while though – until that person becomes Wholesale Qualified themselves.
The rest of your income comes from your team. Forever Living uses a rank-based system, where you earn more with each new rank. But, the ranks are simply based on total sales (from you and from your team) and each rank promotion is permanent.
Each time you hit a new rank, all subsequent sales get a bonus. This system increases your income over time, without you needing to focus on specific team structures or monthly requirements.
Final Thoughts: The compensation plan is certainly interesting and comes with less risk than most other companies. Even so, it’s important to think about the products and whether you could make regular sales.
- Focus: Arctic cloudberry
- Minimum Cost: $35 (for a success kit, contents aren’t specified)
Product Overview: Vísi has a broader range of products than most companies on this list. But, they do focus on the general theme of Scandinavian products and on one particular ingredient – the Scandinavian-based arctic cloudberry.
Vísi doesn’t actually produce very many products. But, each one that it does sell tends to be well-designed and effectively marketed. This aspect alone should make them easy to promote. Many take advantage of modern trends too, like keto diets and hydrolyzed collagen.
There’s still no evidence that arctic cloudberry offers amazing benefits. But, at least Vísi focuses on this area less. There’s not as much hype either.
The biggest limitation is that Vísi offers few details about the current prices of their products. With the focus on quality, I suspect that the items are on the expensive side. That was something I noticed when reviewing the company previously too.
Commission Quick View: While the products are appealing, the compensation plan from Vísi has serious limitations. For one thing, it’s a purchase-first plan. You need to buy the products at wholesale and then resell them to customers.
Even if you know precisely what people want, the style is frustrating. There’s also a risk that you’ll get stuck with product that you simply can’t sell. Buying first also requires a significant investment on your part, which is never ideal.
You can also earn by getting people to join Vísi as Preferred Customers. In that case, you get 20% commission on orders.
The team plan follows a binary pattern, which is another annoying factor. You build two different teams. Your income comes from their performance compared to one another. To optimize income, you need to get both sides performing well.
There are ongoing requirements too. Some of these come from ranks. As you go up in ranks, you need to hit more personal sales and more sales from your team. Doing that isn’t always easy, especially when real life gets in the way. You also need an autoship of 75 PV each month. This will cost you around $100 a month (the exact price depends on the products you choose).
Having to purchase every month is a frustrating requirement. Many companies allow you to meet sales goals instead – but that doesn’t seem to be an option here.
Final Thoughts: The products at Vísi are appealing and could sell well. Unfortunately, the compensation plan leaves a lot to be desired.
- Focus: Amalaki
- Minimum Cost: $49.95 (for an enrollment pack that doesn’t contain products)
Product Overview: Zrii offers two sets of products, Wellness and Skincare. Their main focus is Amalaki, which is promoted as a liquid dietary supplement. The product is a juice, made from amalaki, along with other herbs and botanical ingredients.
Zrii calls amalaka a superfruit and perhaps it is. Even so, the benefits aren’t that profound. Many fruits provide antioxidants and phytonutrients. There is no evidence that amalaki is any better than these. The main sales angle simply seems to be that it is rare, which isn’t enough to prove health implications.
Other product makes use of the fruit too, such as Rise (instant coffee) and Achieve (weight management shakes). The skincare product makes use of something Zrii calls their ZriiNew Skincare System. Details are provided, including indications about some of the science behind the product range. Even so, there aren’t many reviews and the advantages are far from proven.
Pricing information isn’t easy to find but the products seem to be on the expensive side. So, once again, we’re left with products that may or may not work, which might be difficult to sell.
Commission Quick View: Zrii is one of many companies to claim they have the ‘most generous compensation plan’, which is never a good sign. Claims like this are rarely ever true.
The main way to earn is through orders that customers place. Distributors earn either 15% or 30% on their first order (depending on what they have unlocked). They then earn 20% on all subsequent orders. This commission rate is fairly low for the industry. The income stays at this rate too, it doesn’t increase.
Instead, the main way to earn is through the team. Zrii has multiple different models and bonuses in place, including a binary tree and a unilevel one. These are both complex, placing many requirements on distributors.
There are also ongoing requirements. People in the lower ranks need to buy 50 QV in products from Zrii every four weeks or hit 500 volume within their team for that period. These requirements double for the higher ranks. It’s not clear how much you need to spend to meet these goals. But, having to buy product every month is frustrating when it comes to making money.
One other consideration is how you join. Zrii offers three different enrollment packs, which increase in price. The higher packs give you access to additional bonuses. You could still earn them by hitting certain sales targets, but the emphasis is on buying them. That pattern is manipulative and can mean people feel pressured into spending more money.
Final Thoughts: The end result is that Zrii places a huge emphasis on team building and development. Income for actual sales is much lower. And, to be honest, the products aren’t that appealing either.
- Focus: Hemp
- Minimum Cost: $54.98/year (website access and support, no products)
Product Overview: With Kannaway, the product focus is simple – hemp. They promote themselves as a ‘professional company in an unprofessional space’ and focus on providing a range of cannabis-related products. These include items like Gold Premium Hemp Oil (15g for $440 retail), Premium Full Spectrum Liquid (4 fl. oz for $175 retail) and Chocolate Energy Chews (30 chews for $49.50 retail).
There is also a Revive line, which is meant to provide various nutritional bonuses.
Regardless of the products, the general focus is simply hemp. The items don’t have hallucinogenic properties. Instead, they’re simply meant to promote various health benefits.
Whether that’s the case is an entirely different story. Many people do claim that hemp is amazing and some studies have suggested that it is effective. But, the research isn’t great. The simple answer is that the products might work for some situations or conditions – if you’re lucky. Or, they might do nothing at all.
I have mixed views about the sales potential. On the one hand, hemp is popular. There’s plenty of hype to go around, which should help matters. Even so, the products are expensive and have questionable benefits. You’d need a passionate audience to even hope at making sales.
Commission Quick View: Kannaway uses two sales mechanisms. The first is reselling, where distributors buy at wholesale and then resell. This style always comes with challenges and the costs can increase rapidly. It’s particularly bad in this case, as the products from Kannaway are so expensive.
The other option is the Preferred Customer Program. Here, customers get their orders shipped directly to them. Distributors earn 30% of the commission, while their upline earns the remaining 70%, which isn’t great either. Kannaway also doesn’t specify what this percentage is calculated from.
There are various bonuses and ways to earn. But, the main team mechanism is a unilevel plan. This starts out at 2% from your first level and 3% from your second level, increasing from there.
The design is the reverse of most systems, where you’re getting higher percentages from lower tiers. This structure can promote more income, as your lower levels can theoretically be much larger than your initial ones. Still, that’s often not the case. To make a decent income, you’d need a large team with many recruits.
Do you know enough people passionate about hemp? They’d need to be selling it too, not just buying it.
Kannaway has two ongoing requirements. One is the $54.98 per year fee. The other is maintaining a personal business volume. The amount depends on your rank and can come from sales or purchases.
Final Thoughts: The products from Kannaway could sell to the right audience. But, the compensation plan has some major flaws, especially as you need to purchase first.
8. Prime My Body
- Focus: Health
- Minimum Cost: $39 (fee) + $239 (for a starter pack)
Product Overview: Prime My Body doesn’t have a single unique ingredient. But, they do emphasize hemp, which is why they’re being included on this list. The company has an incredibly limited selection of products. One is their Hydrate Luxe Daily Moisturizer ($66 retail). They also have their Prime Protein Superfood ($60.50 for 20 servings), which is basically a protein shake.
Finally, they sell hemp oil, at $149 for 1.7 fl. oz. The hemp oil uses a ‘unique liposomal delivery system’. This is meant to improve plasma concentrations of the oil. Prime My Body does provide some proof for this claim too. But, evidence of actual benefits remains scarce.
Even if you were passionate about hemp, Prime My Body feels too limited. It would be tough to make money promoting just three products, especially when they are all so different than one another.
Commission Quick View: Sales for Prime My Body are mostly made through a replicated website. Distributors earn the difference between retail price and distributor price. The percentage isn’t given but for the Hemp Oil, the profit seems to be $30. That calculates to around 20% of the retail price.
The other option is Preferred Customers. These customers get automatic shipments from the company each month, at a discount. Distributors earn a 25% commission on the first sale from each Preferred Customer. After that, the distributor earns residuals instead. This seems to mean that you wouldn’t get a direct commission from repeat sales.
With this company, the team building income follows a binary model. In this case, distributors build a left and right leg. Purchases on each leg generate Reward Points and the highest-performing leg is considered your Power Leg. Once both legs hit a certain number of points, the system cycles, and distributors earn a commission.
This binary design does work well enough for income. The catch is that you need two teams that perform well. If one does and the other doesn’t, you don’t earn much at all. This can easily mean more management on your end. Optimizing income becomes more difficult too.
Final Thoughts: Honestly, just give this one a miss. The plan isn’t great and you’ve only got three products to work with. That creates a challenging system right from the beginning.
9. Gano Excel
- Focus: Ganoderma lucidum
- Minimum Cost: $195 (for a starter kit with various products)
Product Overview: Gano Excel sells a range of products, including coffee, tea, supplements and personal care items. But, their main emphasis is on the coffee and tea. They also heavily rely on Ganoderma lucidum, which is a mushroom.
Gano Excel isn’t the first company to add Ganoderma lucidum to hot drinks, nor will it be the last. The concept is meant to promote various health benefits and lead to weight loss. Some people do see positive outcomes, while others don’t.
The retail prices vary between $25 and $32 per product. For the drinks, this comes to a little above $1 per serving. You’re just buying instant coffee, so that’s not a great deal. But, it is better than many similar products.
On a side note, the packaging isn’t well-designed. Most of the products don’t look high-quality. This could be a problem for promoting sales.
Commission Quick View: With Gano Excel, the compensation is based on the difference between wholesale and retail price. Distributors purchase the products themselves first and then resell them. For example, one product can be purchased at $17 and sold for $25, giving a profit of $8.
Personally, I hate the style. It feels too risky. It also means you might get stuck with leftover product that you simply can’t sell. If this does happen, you could easily lose money, instead of making it.
The team aspect follows a binary model. Distributors make 15% commission on the sales of their weaker team only. This is the main way to earn but there are some other bonuses too, including a residual income based on the number of people recruited.
Final Thoughts: The purchase-first approach is rarely appealing. Plus, the products from Gano Excel aren’t amazing. Many people would struggle to sell them consistently.
- Focus: Ganoderma lucidum
- Minimum Cost: $49 (for a starter kit with some products)
Product Overview: Organo is a second company that emphasizes Ganoderma lucidum. The product focus is similar as well, including multiple coffee products containing the mushroom. There has been some research into the compound. Even so, most of the suggested benefits haven’t been proven.
The pricing isn’t too bad for the industry. For example, they charge $27 for a 30-pack of coffee. You could find cheaper instant coffee in the grocery store, of course. Even so, $27 is less than many other MLM products.
From a sales perspective, coffee with added mushrooms is an odd idea. People tend to be passionate about their coffee, often going to lengths to make sure they find a brand that tastes good. On the other hand, Organo is simply instant coffee with extra ingredients.
The right audience might still be interested, especially if they were passionate about weight loss. Still, many other people simply wouldn’t want the coffee. This issue alone could decrease your potential sales.
Commission Quick View: Organo’s compensation plan allows distributors to sell in person or through a replicated website. When selling online, the compensation is the difference between the wholesale and retail price. The same is true when selling in person. You could also increase the price to raise your profit margin too.
However, the amount you earn isn’t clear. That makes it hard to gauge how effective the plan is.
For the team aspect, Organo uses a binary plan. In this case, you earn between 10% and 20% of the sales from the lesser of your two teams (you start at 10%). Organo also has other bonuses, related to your sales and success.
Part of the plan involves a rank system. You progress up through the ranks by meeting various sales and team requirements. New ranks come with additional chances to make money.
Final Thoughts: Organo has some advantages. But, the products aren’t unique and it isn’t even clear how much you’d be earning.
Honestly, I don’t recommend any of these companies. They all tend to hype up the benefits that they provide and look far too much like a scam. Even if you’re passionate about a set of products, convincing other people would be an entirely different story. The hype alone will only get you so many sales, and if the product doesn't deliver results, people will lose interest. If I absolutely had to, I'd probably pick one of the mushroom companies because mushrooms are kind of cool, and it would be interesting to research this fungi. People drink coffee all the time, and may just get in the habit of liking the flavor of Gano or Organo brand coffee.
Personally, I think your chances of success would be better with a more realistic set of products and a straightforward information-based marketing approach. Rather than try to target people that will buy based on hype then fade away, focus on people that can gain long-term benefits from lifestyle changes, whether that be eating healthier, exercising more, or making other lifestyle changes.
MLM Critic & Author: Nathaniell
What's up ladies and dudes! Great to finally meet you, and I hope you enjoyed this post. I have to be honest though. I'm not a big fan of MLM. Tried it. Hated it.
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