Is Amway A Scam? [2021 Updated Review] Legit MLM Or A Multi-Billion Pyramid Scheme?

amway review

Welcome to My Amway Review!

With the hype of MLM businesses in one of the most saturated niches - health and wellness, it’s not a surprise when someone would have probably recommended you selling such products and join in the program. 

With that in mind, we will now be discussing one of the pillars of multi-level marketing, one that has been running for many decades - Amway. 

Amway Review Summary

Name: Amway


Founders: Rich DeVos and Jay Van Andel

Product Type: Multi-Level Marketing

Price: $62 For The Registration Fee + $99 For The Starter Kit + $60 For The Renewal Fee/Year 

amway logo

Quick Summary: Amway is a multi-level marketing (MLM) company that sells and markets health, wellness, beauty, nutrition, and home care products. It’s one of the MLM pioneers and has been skyrocketing in revenue for years. 

It’s also operating worldwide. However, being an MLM itself, Amway doesn’t have the best reputation among the general public. It also has faced numerous FTC investigations and their products are as well quite overpriced!

Overall Rating: 5/10

Recommended: No

Yes, it’s probably one among the few companies that can indeed claim to have pioneered the business model, MLM that had made a noise in the business industry for years, the business model that people come to know and that they had either loved or hated.

Amway is a worldwide MLM company that is on the top when it comes to revenue, even greater than the renowned Avon. However, there are a couple of things that place them on the bad side. 

With that, would this be a great business for you? Well, we will disclose that and more in this review!

What Is Amway About?

Amway is a multi-level marketing company that has been established ever since 1959. That’s over 60 years; perhaps that’s why they are coined as one of the pioneers of the MLM business model.

Basically, they are like these companies when it comes to their products and operation: Relìv International, ASEA Global, Zinzino, EvolvHealth, and Youngevity.

Amway was founded by Rich DeVos and Jay Van Andel. The company headquarters is in Ada, Michigan but over the years, it has as well expanded in operation and has been operating in more than 100 countries worldwide, including China, India, Canada, Japan, and Thailand. 

It’s probably in every continent in the world with Antarctica as the exemption. 

Most likely, they have approximately between 3 and 4 million distributors worldwide. Indeed, for more than 60 years running in the business, Amway has established its business and widened its dominion!

The founders, Jay Van Andel and Richard “Rich” DeVos were friends and business partners. A decade before putting up Amway, they were marketing a line of nutritional products from a company, Nutrilite (formerly named The California Vitamin Company and the first-ever multivitamin sold in the US). 

amway founder Rich DeVos and Jay Van Andel

Andel and DeVos became the top-selling distributors. 

They were impressed by the innovative direct sales model used by Nutrilite and how it provided commissions on sales from freshly employed distributors they recruited to the business. It was a platform called multi-level marketing or network marketing. 

After building their teams of over five thousand distributors, Andel and DeVos left Nutrilite and along with them are their top recruits and launched a business of their own. Thus, the birth of The American Way was later shortened to Amway. They put up the business with the idea to expand the product line and include regular household items. 

It was in the late 1990s and early 2000s when Amway was thought of as an “internet business”. It was when the company launched the now-defunct web-based brand called Quixtar in North America.

Amway was the champion of MLMs because its revenue skyrocketed over the years. It topped and overtaken the famous Avon. 

However, Amway was also labeled an infamous MLM because Amway has faced numerous FTC investigations on a couple of complaints. Yet, the FTC stated that Amway is not an illegal pyramid scheme. 

Amway Product Line

Amway is a worldwide MLM company that markets and sells various products including health, wellness, beauty, nutrition, and home care products. 

Their first product was a highly concentrated organic household cleaner, Frisk which later on renamed L.O.C. “Liquid Organic Cleaner,” which is now known as “Legacy of Clean”.

L.O.C. along with Nutrilite supplements that Amway later acquired, became the core of their product offerings.

Today, Amway has a wide range of products in which they categorize with the following:

amway product line


This includes energy drinks, sports nutrition, vitamins and supplements, and weight management.


This includes skin care, make-up, and fragrance.

Personal Care

This includes bath and body care, hair care, and oral care


This includes air treatment, cookware, dish, disinfectant cleaners, laundry surface cleaners, water treatment.

Amway is in partnership with the following brands.

Amway products are too many to discuss, which is both a pro and a con. Pro because this gives customers a lot of options to choose from and a con for distributors since it would be hard to divide the attention when it comes to promoting products.

Do their products work? 

The quality of their products is not a question, every category is of high quality. They are even rated A+ by the Better Bureau Business (BBB). However, their products are pretty pricey.

For instance, a 10ml topical essential oil costs $20; looking at Amazon, I saw a set of essential oils that are less than $10.

Unless you truly believe in the product or love using them, I don’t think it’s practical to spend that amount of cash.

How To Make Money With Amway?

You could earn as a distributor in Amway through your retail sales; however, it’s only around 30% commission. It’s not that bad but imagine the effort you need to put in selling their expensive products.

There is another option to make money though and this is what Amway is pushing the most -- recruitment.

As a network marketing company, you need to focus on building a team and encouraging your downline to do the same. There are corresponding bonuses given to individuals who can build an empowered team.

Since it’s a legit business model, your commission will come from your personal sales and the sales that your team will make.

To give you a quick idea, these are the three ways to make money with Amway:

Retail Margin: This money comes from the product you sell.

Bonuses: These bonuses are based on your performance and the performance of your team.

Growth Incentives: With more sponsors, the bigger your team can be.  

To learn more about Amway’s compensation plan, you can watch the video below:

My Personal Thoughts On MLM Companies

I’ve been invited a lot of times to join networking companies and what I noticed about the distributors is that they are very aggressive in referring to other people. 

It even comes to the point that they are exaggerating the opportunity or the products they sell. Some are unethical and have even suggested selling items so you can have money to join them.

I’ve experienced this personally, that's why ever since I am not fond of this business model. 

On top of this, I know people who have become MLM distributors and have spent a lot of money only to end up broke.

A study by Jon M. Taylor also concludes that 99% percent of MLM participants lose their cash.

Nonetheless, I still believe that there are networking companies that are worth your time so before you decide to join a program, make sure to check everything you need to know about it first. 

Here Is My Top Recommendation to Start Highly Profitable Online Business from Comfort Of Your Home

Is Amway A Scam?

Amway is definitely not a scam. It is an established MLM company that's been already running for more than 60 years. 

They are also Better Business Bureau (BBB) Accredited with an A+ BBB rating. 

It’s even been booming in revenue for the past years and is indeed a stable company. However, I still do not recommend joining this company.

There are too many red flags, including:

  • Losing Tons Of Cash

You have to spend a huge amount as a distributor and since it would be a challenge to sell their expensive products, you might end up losing cash instead of earning it. Other than this, there are expensive materials marketing that you need to pay so you can “become successful” or so they say.

  • Concealing The Truth

There are tons of training groups affiliated with Amway and reports are suggesting that the people under it are not allowed to say that it’s under Amway. Their logic is that the brand has been misused before and that they want aspiring distributors to know the brand in a new way. 

This might be good for them but it’s unfair for potential distributors since they don’t know what they’re going into.

  • Brainwashing And Lies

I won’t be surprised if the recruitment and the entire system they have for their distributors are made of brainwashing and lies. As I’ve said, I’ve been in the same situation personally. 

As for Amway, reports suggest that the people on top of the pyramid are making more money by encouraging their members to attend their training so they can be successful.

Without following their system, members will not reach success apparently.

  • Strain In Relationships

It’s normal for MLM members to lose a friend or a family because of various reasons. For one, they might feel bad because their invitation has been turned down or when a friend refuses to buy their products.

Some people might also stay away from a friend or a family member who’s a part of an MLM, thinking that they would only recruit them to join the opportunity, which is definitely true.

Therefore, before joining such a program, you should be ready not only to lose cash but also the people you love.

Is Amway A Pyramid Scheme/Ponzi Scheme?

Most MLM companies are mistaken as a pyramid scheme because of the recruitment involved. While it’s true for most networking brands, there’s still a way to distinguish if it’s a scam or a legit multi-level marketing program.

An MLM, which is a legit business model, by the way, offers various options to make money. They have physical or digital products to sell so distributors can earn from retail commissions. There are incentives for members who can build their team but they are not compensated directly for inviting people rather from the sales that their downlines make.

Also, as long as members are not forced to purchase more than what they can sell, it’s not a red flag.

As for Amway, there may be a heavy emphasis on recruitment but it can’t be considered a pyramid scheme because of their products. The prices are steep but still, it’s obvious that the brand is putting their attention on improving their products, too.

If you’re wondering if it’s a Ponzi scheme, the answer is also no.

There’s no promise of guaranteed income; in fact, the compensation plan states that the amount that the distributors are going to earn is based on their performance.

That being said and despite all the complaints, Amway has proven itself as a legit opportunity to make money online.


An IBO (Independent Business Owner) is a person who has signed a contract of partnership with the Amway Corporation. An IBO can also be referred to as an ABO (Amway Business Owner) or Amway Distributor in different markets.

To join as an IBO or Amway distributor, first, you have to register on their website. Pay the $62 registration fee and purchase a starter kit at $99. After a year, you will also have to pay the yearly renewal fee of $60. 

The Starter Kit is inclusive of the following:

  • $245 value of products that you can try for yourself and share with potential clients.
  • Great introduction tips to help you engage potential consultants, i.e. Sample Bags
  • 10 mini catalogs with product and business information



Established Company

Amway has been around for more than 60 years and that's a really long time! Amway has been a household name around the world. They are even considered as one of the pillars of the MLM business model.

This is an advantage because being in this kind of business is challenging. Most network marketing companies don’t really last because of the structure that they follow. That being said, being in the industry for more than 60 years, let alone 10 years only suggest that the brand has a solid foundation.

Champion In Revenue

In the hands of the right people, Amway’s compensation plan can make you a lot of money. Amway is recognized as the champion of MLMs per revenue because if you would compare its yearly revenue, no other MLM company comes close. It’s even bigger than the popular Avon.

This is good news for aspiring Amway IBO but then again, your income is based on your performance.


Champion Yet Infamous 

As I mentioned, Amway was considered a champion when it comes to revenue but it may have even as well coined infamous because of its bad reputation. The name Amway is often linked to pyramid and Ponzi schemes. 

In fact, Amway has faced numerous FTC investigations but on the bright side, they are freed by the FTC from the Pyramid Scheme accusation. Being an MLM itself already places a stigma on most people.  

It’s not to disdain such opportunities; some people are really fond of these companies; it's not for everyone. It’s a challenging business model and if you don’t have the right skills and experience to make it work, you might end up losing tons of cash.

IBOs End Up Buying A Volume To Reach Minimums

Amway products as we know are of high quality yet are pretty expensive.

As a distributor, it will be hard for distributors to sell these since there are a lot of cheaper store-bought brands/products available. 

There are well-known brands that are even more affordable compared to Amway’s products.

Because of this, distributors are challenged to reach their minimums, so they end up buying enough volume to reach their minimums. 

Have To Be A Sponsor (Recruitment) Beast To Achieve Income Goals 

Just like most MLM opportunities, recruitment is the key to success, and it’s gonna be a long shot. 

Other than the pressure and challenge of reaching your minimum in sales, you will as well have to strategize in finding the right leads to build your own team/ downline.

Who Is It For?

Being an MLM opportunity, it’s for people who are good at recruitment and sales talk because you’re not only selling products here but you are also endorsing people to join the program. 

I could say that people with MLM experiences have more advantages so unless you’ve been a distributor before or you’re patient and willing to level up your marketing skills, you might give this a chance.

Since the brand is under the health and wellness niche, it might be a good option for those who are into fitness and beauty.

Training Tools/Support

Purchasing the starter kit and becoming a direct seller of Amway, you’ll be provided with the business tools and resources you’ll need as you go through your Amway business. 

And besides these, you’ll also have access to a few more services including in-class training materials, quality brands, and marketing support.

Final Opinion/Verdict

In conclusion, Amway is a legitimate MLM company that’s been already running in the business for 60 years. Though overpriced, their products are of high quality and even commended by people. 

However, being an MLM, such programs require you to be a recruitment beast to achieve your income goals. So, it’s definitely quite a big work!! In the right hands, the skillful and adept, perhaps one can succeed in this business but as per the FTC, 99% of MLM people lose money.  

So building a booming income in Amway is not that easy. It will be hard as well as marketing Amway because of their stained reputation for they have even faced numerous FTC investigations. And so, we are not recommending you to this one!

What’s Next?

Making money online is not an issue but finding out which one is legit or not. Even until now, it’s difficult to know which among them is a scam or even if you found a legal opportunity, it won’t be easy to know if it suits you or not.

So whether you’re a newbie or you’ve been doing this for a long time, I suggest that you sign up with my top-recommended program. There’s no need to purchase products that will probably end up in your garage!

Join now and take advantage of the following perks:

One-on-one coaching

Comprehensive guide

The best business tools and support you need

Webinars and training resources

And many more!

Thank you for reading my Amway review.

I hope this has answered your questions and if you have any clarifications or comments, please feel free to drop them down below.

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Caroline So

I'm a stay-at-home mom always on the lookout for ways on how to make LEGITIMATE money online. I also love to write; when not working as a content writer, I create blogs about skincare, makeup, motherhood, and digital marketing. I joined Vasiliy as a writer for Best Lifetime Income blog.

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