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Earning Income Selling Young Living Essential Oils

Disclaimer: All content is the opinion of the author and should not be taken in place of professional legal, medical, or financial advice. The author is not, nor has ever been, a Young Living Essential Oils distributor, member or salesperson of any kind.

You’ve probably seen essential oils floating around your newsfeed. Perhaps you have a friend who sells Young Living or talks about the “benefits” of using essential oils for everything from illness to relaxation. Maybe you’ve never heard of essential oils. Or you’re a frequent Young Living customer. This article will start with the basics. Feel free to jump ahead. Here’s what we’ll cover:

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How much money can I make selling LipSense?

Hi there from BOTTLESOUP! Please note that this post on selling LipSense and all posts are the opinion of the author, and should never be a substitute for professional legal or financial advice. This post is not authored by a LipSense distributor. Questions? Feel free to contact us.

A couple months back, we posted an article about LipSense and since then, we’ve heard that you’d like us to dig deeper. So, here we go!

The question our readers most want answered is this: how much money can be made selling LipSense? So we’ll try to figure that out.

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Groceries for less than $100/week with no coupons

Hey, there! Mrs. Bottlesoup, here. I write a lot about what not to do if you want to make some extra money. You can read more about various MLMs and Direct Sales companies to avoid here. What if instead of looking for ways to make extra, you saved extra instead?

No, I’m not talking about Extreme Couponing. Who has time for that? No, I’m talking about buying real food that your family will eat, eliminating grocery waste, and saving thousands of dollars by grocery shopping just once a month. This sounds like a scam, you’re thinking. Nope! There’s nothing for me to sell you, here. I’m going to explain exactly how we’ve reduced our grocery bill from an insane $1,100/month (or about $275/week) to less than $400 a month.

That’s an $8,400 savings per year on groceries for us. But maybe you’re thinking our family was spending a lot more than average. Here are the latest national statistics on groceries for a family of four. Keep in mind that this data is over four years old now, but you can get a good picture of national grocery spending:

“The USDA uses national food intake data and grocery price information to calculate different costs for a healthy diet at home. The latest numbers for a four-member family: a thrifty food plan, $146 a week; a low-cost food plan, $191 a week; a moderate-cost plan, $239; a liberal plan, $289 a week. Some food waste is built into these costs.” (Source: Cost of feeding a family of four: $146 – $289 a week. USA Today)

So, 52 weeks in a year. Here are the annual costs:

  • Thrifty: $7,592 spent on groceries annually ($146/week)
  • Low-cost: $9,932 spent on groceries annually ($191/week)
  • Moderate-cost: $12,428 spent on groceries annually ($239/week)
  • Liberal plan: $15,028 spent on groceries annually ($289/week)

What do we spend on groceries annually? Less than $5,200. That’s $2,392 less than the “thrifty” average.

So how do we do this? And how do we do it without couponing or eating junk?

The answer: economics. By assessing what we eat and use on a regular basis, and keeping track of that data, we were able to eliminate making wasteful purchases. Then, with our Costco membership, we are able to make bulk purchases for cheap.

Now, we do cook a lot of meals from scratch. And I do feel that my KitchenAid is a necessity for homemade meals. But, as a working mom, I don’t feel burdened by cooking for my family. I enjoy it. And a lot of times, I cook on Sunday and pre-make meals for the week. Other times, it’s a breakfast-for-dinner situation. No one goes hungry, and we’re no longer stressing our grocery bill.

Ok, ok, that’s great, you’re thinking. But what do you actually eat?

I thought you’d never ask! Here’s what our typical rotation looks like:

  • Breakfast: coffee with eggs & salsa, raisin bread, breakfast sandwich, or homemade bagel with cream cheese, veggie quiche
  • Lunch: peanut butter sandwich, tuna sandwich, burgers, homemade pizza, veggie quiche
  • Dinner: veggies + protein (whatever is on hand), pasta or mac and cheese for the kids as an extra side or meal, omelets, veggie quiche or any of the lunch options
  • Snacks: cheese plate, peanut butter, applesauce, leftovers

You may think, Wow, that doesn’t look like a lot of variety. And you’re right. It’s not. But what we found is that we were buying a variety of foods, and our kids just would not eat a lot of them, or the food would go to waste due to our hectic schedules. In fact, my husband refers to the fridge crisper as “The Food Graveyard – Where Vegetables Go to Die,” thanks to my habit of purchasing lots of fresh, leafy greens and other produce only to have it rot there until we threw it out. Our solution was not to stop buying veggies, but to buy them frozen. After all, which is better? Never eating veggies at all, or frozen? I’ll take the frozen.

So, we shop exclusively at Costco, and I bring my spreadsheet with me. Yes, I’m that mom. Because although I am quite the foodie, I’d rather have extra money for vacation and activities for my kids rather than a bunch of groceries.

Here’s a sneak peek of the free Costco Budgeting Spreadsheet and how it works:

You’ll see a price column, quantity column, and total column. Adjust the quantity to see your total row change. If a price is different at your Costco, change the price column for that item. You can also adjust items by renaming in the Item column and updating the details. The Total column has a formula for quick math, so unless you’re a pro with Excel, try to avoid making changes in that column.

I’ll be updating the spreadsheet each month with our actual costs. You’ll see that this month, we only spent $327.10 (or $81.77/week). That means we have $72.90 left over in our grocery budget for things like fresh produce, meat, fish or – let’s face it – takeout! 🙂 Note that we rotate purchases. So, every other month we’ll get a 10 lb box of burgers, etc.

Another thing to note: I make a lot of things from scratch specifically for my husband’s ketogenic diet. Did you know you can make pizza dough and bagels from almond flour, mozzarella, eggs, cream cheese and baking powder?

It’s so delicious. Here’s a few pictures of the homemade keto foods I’ve made:

Keto bagel – 5 net carbs!

Keto pizza – 1.5 net carbs per slice 🙂

Subscribe below to get your budgeting spreadsheet and please leave a comment letting me know how your trip goes, and what creative meals you make! Coming soon: an article on what we’re doing with some of our $8,400 in savings. Spoiler alert: we’re going to Disney World! 🙂


Should I Bank My Baby’s Cord Blood?

Welcome to BOTTLESOUP, a parenting blog that does the Googling for you. Please note that nothing in this blog should be considered legal advice, medical advice, or financial advice; this blog is the opinion of the author, based on Internet findings. Within the post, you will see hyperlinks; these links are the source material for the post. Questions? Don’t hesitate to contact us.

Cord blood banking is a hot topic among expecting parents. You want to give your child every advantage. If there’s something you can do now to help your child later, you want to do it. If you’re a first time parent, your instincts are good. But with all of the information about cord blood banking, and the different companies to choose from, it’s hard to understand if cord blood banking is the right thing to do.

When doing your research, it’s helpful to look for scholarly or academic sources. A quick Google search may provide lots of results, but you may also be reading a lot of materials from cord blood companies. To be clear, these materials are not always wrong, but they are biased because these companies are trying to sell a product: cord blood banking.

What is Cord Blood Banking?

Cord Blood Banking is the storage of human umbilical cord blood. Unlike traditional blood banks, most cord blood banks are private storage banks (translation: a company or corporation) rather than public storage banks.

What does a private Cord Blood Bank provide?

Private Cord Blood Banks provide stem cell separation and storage. When a private cord blood bank receives a baby’s cord blood, they separate the stem cells from the blood and store the stem cells. The stem cells are stored cryogenically. (Source)

A private cord blood bank provides you with a guarantee that your child’s “cord blood” (stem cells) will be available exclusively to you and your family, should a future need arise.

What the experts told us

You should also ask your doctor and your child’s future pediatrician for their thoughts. This is anecdotal, but when I asked my doctor and pediatrician, they both advised against cord blood banking. In fact, they both had the same conclusion. They said that the odds of ever needing cord blood were slim. But even if the need arose, a sibling is often the ideal match. And if we were really interested in preserving the cord blood for potential use in the future, we should consider donating to a public cord blood bank.

Before that conversation, I didn’t know public cord blood banks were a thing.

What the online research says

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) strongly discourages private cord blood banking. In fact, here’s their stance on healthychildren.org, an AAP website:

Other experts agree with the AAP

“The odds that the cord blood of any given baby will be needed by that baby later in life are quite small, explained Dr. Steven Joffe, the study’s senior author and a pediatric oncologist and assistant professor of pediatrics at the Harvard Medical School. One reason is that for many of the conditions where a blood cell transplant is the answer, a patient’s own blood cells can not be used, because they would reintroduce the disease you are trying to cure. A sibling donor is almost always ideal, but in most cases, that sibling is still alive and available as a donor, so banked blood is not needed.” (Source: “Is Banked Cord Blood Worth It?” The New York Times)

What is the cord blood banking cost?

If you decide to donate to a public cord blood bank, cord blood banking is free.

If you decide to use a private cord blood bank, costs vary. The average upfront cost is between $1,000 and $3,000. It is not covered by health insurance. You must pay a storage fee, annually, for the cord blood. The fee is anywhere from $90 to $175 per year.

For argument’s sake, let’s say you get the best “deal” possible on cord blood banking.

$1,000 initial investment + $90 per year for life

The average American lives to age 78.74. We’ll round up to 79, since the annual fee is due at the beginning of the year. But we’ll also assume that the initial $1,000 includes the annual fee for year one.

The bare minimum for private cord blood banking, over a lifetime, is $8,020.

You may think that’s a great deal. But just for educational purposes, let’s say you open a savings account for your child at birth and each year $90 is deposited. Over time, it could look like this:

Or even this:

We show you this to illustrate the opportunity cost and time value of money for cord blood storage.

What if I don’t store my child’s cord blood?

The good news: privately banked cord blood is rarely used as treatment. You are more likely to get a public cord blood donation to help you. Think of it this way: if you need a blood transfusion, you don’t donate your blood and freeze it in hopes that you may use it later. You rely on public blood banks.

Verdict

It’s a personal choice. But since the AAP does not support private cord banks, my personal opinion would be not to use a private cord bank.

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Should I Become a LipSense Distributor?

Welcome to BOTTLESOUP, a parenting blog that does the Googling for you. Please note that nothing in this blog should be considered legal or financial advice; this blog is the opinion of the author, based on Internet findings. Within the post, you will see hyperlinks; these links are the source material for the post. Questions? Don’t hesitate to contact us.

Update: we’ve written a new, more in-depth article here.

A few of our readers have requested a post on selling LipSense, asking for our opinion on the matter. As with any direct sales or MLM company, it’s important to do your research. Here’s what we found and how we found it

  1. LipSense is a SeneGence company.

    SeneGence lets people sign up as SeneGence Independent Distributors.

This is from the SeneGence website. If you click the photo, you will be directed to their website.

2. Lipsense is a multi-level marketing, direct sales company.

They tell you this right on their website. You can see that here:

3. How do you earn money with Lipsense?

It’s a traditional MLM / direct sales company with an upline, downline, commission, sales volume…I’m sorry, is your head spinning yet?

Unlike a traditional job – even a traditional commission based sales job – where you know how much you will make based on a specific criteria (ex: I work 1 hour, I make $10. I sell a house for $200,000, I make 5% commission of $10k) how you actually earn money and what you earn is a bit of a mystery.

While you’d think there would be a simple chart or excel sheet that could show you dollars earned per sale of each item. But, no. Instead, you can look at this presentation, which features charts like this:

Spoiler alert: I don’t understand this, either.

4. How much does it cost to become a Lipsense Independent Distributor? 

It depends on which package you choose. According to SeneGence, you have the choice to “Choose to be a Customer” or “Choose to be a Distributor”. You also have the choice to walk away. Remember, any business or financial decision is not something you should take lightly or feel pressured into. Your SeneGence New Distributor Kit (NDK) has an application fee of $55. Yes, you must apply and receive a NDK before you can purchase your starter kit.

Note that the NDK includes a $5 donation to the company’s charity. Not sure what this has to do with starting a business, but it seems to be required if you’d like to have the opportunity to buy the starter kit.

Let’s say you pay $55 for the NDK. Can you start selling SeneGence products now? Not quite. It seems that in order to be come a Lipsense distributor, you must also purchase a Distributor Business Kit. The Distributor Business Kits come in two options: one for $95 and one for $295. You can also opt for Distributor training, which costs $550.

So what is the least possible amount i must invest?

Because our goal is always complete transparency, some places on the website indicate that you do not need to have stock of the product in order to sell the product.  It’s called the Customer Direct Order Program.

However, what’s unclear about this is the language stating “All Distributors will have the option to participate in CDO and there is no fee to sign up.” It’s confusing because if you want to become a distributor, you need to pay $55 NDK and, it seems, purchase a Distributor Business Kit. If you don’t need to purchase the Distributor kit, perhaps the cost to participate in CDO is $55 for NDK. But you should confirm this before assuming you can begin distributing this way.

If you want to have the product on hand, it appears that the bare minimum start up cost is $55 for NDK and $95 for Distributor Business Kit for a total of $150 to become a Lipsense Independent Distributor.

5. How much money can I make as a Lipsense Independent Distributor? 

Almost unknown. Rather than share an exact analysis of pay, SeneGence provides complicated commission information. Because information on pay is limited, it’s hard to estimate potential earnings. Something to consider before signing up for an MLM or direct sales company is the unknown.

How much risk are you willing to take? Is $55 or $150 a lot of money for you right now? Or are you comfortable risking the chance you may never make that money back?

There are many examples of how MLM and direct sales companies are not wise investments. Here at BOTTLESOUP, we’ve written several articles on these types of companies. But don’t just take our word for it. Do your own research. See what people are saying about SeneGence on Glassdoor. Seems like a good company? Or does this seem like a place you’d avoid?

Many direct sales and MLM companies prey on women. Almost always stay at home moms or struggling single moms. They sell you on the idea of a sisterhood. A community. A business opportunity. The chance to have financial freedom. But they don’t truly empower you with the tools to succeed. While they’re busy building their bottom line, many women find themselves deeper in the hole.

And it’s not fair. Maybe you’re struggling to make ends meet. We understand. We’ve been there. But carefully consider if MLM or direct sales is the best way to improve your financial situation. Maybe start by asking yourself a few questions.

Direct sales / mlm checklist

  • First of all, how much money will I make doing this?
  • While I start this program, do I have enough money to invest and still meet my monthly obligations?
  • Since I’m just getting started (and possibly never sold anything before), how many sales can I reasonably expect to make?
  • Due to my lack of experience in sales, what qualities make be a good salesperson / how will I learn to become good at sales?
  • Because I’m still learning about this process, how will I ensure I know all the ins and outs of the business opportunity?
  • While I hope to make a profit, what will I do if I do not earn any money / is there a backup plan?
  • While I like this product, are there other competing products that people can purchase for less?
  • Due to other products on the market, are there any unique selling points (USP) that make this product worth more money?
  • Further, am I comfortable discussing this USP to my friends and family?
  • Most of all, is this something I’m comfortable and confident in doing, or do I feel like I’m desperate or pushed against a wall?

Due to the nature of direct sales / MLMs, you’ll want to make sure you’re comfortable speaking about the product with your audience. Beyond financial risk, sometimes you risk your personal relationships as well. In conclusion, if you choose to go into direct sales or MLM, always aim to be honest with your potential customers. Because if something doesn’t feel right, it’s best to sound the alarm. Since as a society we value rescuing others from burning buildings – not dragging them into danger.

 

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