Working part-time for Avon has unlocked the lifelong dream of becoming a lawyer for Sammy Richard, 24.
Today, thanks to earning more than £700 every month, Sammy, from Ashford, Middlesex, can buy her books, study for her law degree, be at home to look after her two sons, and still treat the family to some fun days out.
But how did she start out and what are her tips for anyone else looking to make an income out of the door-to-door beauty brand?
We decided to ask her – and here are Sammy’s secrets.
“It was three years ago and Tyler was three and Liam was just a new-born,” she explained.
“I felt so frustrated and lost and had no real identity of who I was. I’d been very academic at school and dreamt of being a barrister since I was eight. But I married my husband Ron young and I was 18 when Tyler was born.
“It seemed to shut down so many options. I was trying various ways to work from home but it was leading to nothing. A friend who worked for Avon suggested I try it. I knew about Avon through my mum and nan but it wasn’t my thing – I only ever used a bit of foundation and mascara and that was it.
“Even so I went for it – it only cost me a £16 sign-up and I got my first brochures. I tried door to door selling once but I became so anxious I knew that wasn’t for me so decided to try social networking.”
‘I now do all my selling on social media’
” Instagram and Facebook are the channels I use the most. I also used You Tube to learn how to use all the products.
“I then started doing my makeup demos on YouTube to show the quality and extent of the makeup and products.
“Bizarrely I suddenly attracted thousands of followers who loved the tutorials. Before I knew it I was an accidental influencer. This has even led to other brands approaching me to use their products.”
How did your first sale make you feel?
“My first payment was to my mum – but that didn’t take anything away from it.”
“I was so delighted and amazed at how easy it was. Within a couple of days I had made two or three sales and it went from there. I now work about 20 hours a week which gives me all the freedom I need to look after the boys.
“If one of them is sick I am at home and I can choose when I work so I can juggle studying. Above all else it has made me feel like I exist beyond being a mum and I feel so much more confident about everything I do.
“I can now afford my books for the Open University degree I am doing and I can see a future for myself. I urge any woman, whatever their age or circumstances, if they are looking for a way to make changes happen in their lives, this is a way forward.
“I earn about £700 every three weeks but you could earn far more if you want to put in more hours.”
Start your future
Sammy is the perfect example of how the lives of women can be improved by having the freedom to earn money on her own terms.
Avon has just launched stand4her – a global plan to tackle some of the greatest barriers that are holding women back from achieving their full potential.
As part of this it has launched the Avon Academy, which will train 500,000 entrepreneurs on-line and face-to-face, every month.
The launch comes after research revealed 77% of women said that working increased their confidence, 65% said working had improved the way in which they are treated by others, and 74% said it increased their ability to be a role model for their children.
How you can follow in Sammy’s footsteps
To follow in Sammy’s footsteps head to Avon online or to find out about other similar opportunities check out The Direct Selling Association which keeps an extensive membership list of established firms.
Alternatively, you could make money by turning old clutter around the house into cash via eBay or Gumtree . We’ve got a packed guide on how to make money, fast, here .
Vinyl records and vintage clothes are popular but so are hi-tech items, kids toys and clothing. Check out the likes of Amazon.co.uk for books and Musicmagpie for CDs, DVDs and games, clothes and electronics. Once you’’ve got a feel for it you could start buying at, say, car boot sales and selling items on for a profit.
If you like shopping but don’t have the cash there are roles for secret shoppers, where you can earn anywhere from £10 to £50 per job plus. In the vast majority of cases, where you have to make a purchase you get to keep it, or it makes for a cheap meal/night out.