Hi, I'm Louise Antoine. A Platinum Manager with Essens and owner of Essens for Everyone.
I was first introduced to Direct Selling back in 2002. I had been working as a Financial Adviser for a well-known insurance company here in the UK. One night the boss called me and half a dozen other advisers into an office and spent 20 minutes shouting at us because we hadn't met our targets that week.
I left that meeting feeling humiliated and demoralised but years earlier I had left an abusive relationship and had vowed never to let anyone shout at me again. So that night I decided I was leaving that job.
I looked around for another job and found one straight away but it paid only 50% of the income I had been receiving as a Financial Adviser, however, I was determined to get away from that company so I left.
I was £50 per month short of what I needed to be able to pay my bills so realised quickly that I needed something else so I looked around and found a very well-known door to door cosmetics company and signed up with them. Within 2 months I had the £50 I needed and more besides.
A few months later I landed another job as a financial adviser with a bank, so no longer needed the extra £50 but by then I had worked so hard to build my business and I enjoyed it too so I kept it going as a sideline.
Fast forward 9 years. I had left financial advice altogether and gone into housing and I was doing very well for myself, although my marriage had broken down and I was bringing up my teenage son with very little help from his father.
Then catastrophe struck. I lost my job.
The scheme I had been running came to an end and I went from earning almost £50,000 a year to earning nothing. I had a mortgage to pay, bills to pay, my son was in college and my ex-husband had stopped paying anything towards his upbringing the day he turned 17 and I had nothing coming in apart from my little bit of income from my Direct Selling job.
I applied for countless jobs and managed to get some casual work but I was getting deeper and deeper into debt. It was then I decided to see what I could do with my Direct Selling business and went all in. Within a year I was selling 10s of thousands of pounds both online and offline. So my sideline became my lifeline.
Through my hard work, I achieved holidays, trips, meals and £100's of pounds worth of shopping vouchers every single year, not to mention 25% discount on all their products. It was then I realised the potential of what the Direct Selling industry could do.
In 2018 I bought a caravan in North Wales with my new husband who had left his job as a carer to join me in the Direct Selling industry. We had been on holiday a year or so earlier to a caravan park and we'd fallen in love with idea of owning our own caravan. So we had sat down and did our due diligence and had asked all the questions we could think of about how much it was going to cost to run the caravan. We had been told site fees would be around £2,500 - £3,650 per year and we worked out we could just about afford a £2,500 plot, so we signed on the dotted line.
It was too late to back out.
Then it came time to pick our plot. We asked if we could have one of the £2,500 plots and the salesman matter of factly said "Oh no. Your caravan is too big for that plot you'll need the £3650 plot."
My heart sank and I had a knot of fear in my stomach. I could suddenly see all those years of struggling and debt collectors looming again. I felt physically sick but it didn't end there. There were gas check fees, insurance fees, advertising fees (because it was obvious we would need to rent it out). All in all we needed £200 per month more than what we had budgeted.
We advertised the caravan for rental straight away but by the end of 2018, we had a total of zero bookings. I was having sleepless nights worrying, waking every night with the 3 am sweats and unable to get back to sleep.
At the same time the company we were with which had once been a pleasure to work with, was instigating so many changes it was barely recognisable as the same opportunity. There were delays with deliveries, mistakes with orders, problems with items being out of stock, and the impact of all these changes was making it harder and harder to earn a living wage.
The same company that had once made it possible for me to keep a roof over my head was now adding to the stress and worries that were keeping me awake at night. I didn't know what we were going to do.
It was then I saw a post on Facebook about Essens, from one of my friends, it raised my curiosity. I simply said, "What's that you're doing?"
Janine told me it was new to the UK, and sold top quality perfumes that were inspired by big designer brands and you could earn up to 40%. I was sceptical about the 40% part, but I'd heard the words "New to the UK".
I'd worked in Direct Selling for a long time, and I knew that the best time to join a Direct Sales company was during the first 5 years. Like any company, the founder members are the cornerstones of the business and I wanted to be one of them. It was new, it was exciting and provided the product was good, it had enormous potential.
To me, it was a no-brainer. I needed more money. I was going backwards with my current company, and here was something that had the potential to change my life for the better, but above all, I knew that if I didn't do it I would always wonder "What if?"..."What would have happened if I had taken that opportunity?" and I didn't want to spend the rest of my life wondering so I took the decision to join and become an Essens distributor there and then.
I ordered my starter kit which, at the time, (as there was no office in the UK), cost me €26 plus €15 shipping. I thought, so what? If it doesn't work out the most I could lose was €41.
I needn't have worried. When my starter kit arrived containing samples of all 60 Essens fragrances I could tell straight away, I had a product I could work with.
The products are amazing and the marketing plan is amazing too. The Essens products sell themselves!
It's a bold statement but in this case very true. They try the products, they buy the products.
By the way, my scepticism was unfounded. The 40% earnings claim was and still is perfectly genuine. In fact, following recent upgrades, it is now possible to earn nearer 50% just selling the products.
ln my first month, I enjoyed moderate success. It was January and people had little money after Christmas but I still managed to achieve more than the £200 in earnings that I so desperately needed. I also started to use the Essens products. I had discovered a product called ES'leeps which finally helped me to rest easy at night. Things meandered along until April.
In April 2019, I was so excited about this business that I was telling anyone and everyone about how it had got me out of a hole and two of my friends decided to join too.
Suddenly things started to take off. Then a few more of my friends and even some people I'd never spoken to before, started to join. Then the people who had joined, on my recommendation, started to introduce their friends, and so on. From July onwards the business just exploded.
In August 2019 I hit 25% level of commission on my team sales (which includes my own sales), and I started earning a 4 figure monthly income. I also qualified for a car and a holiday. The following month I achieved the status of Gold Manager and my team size trebled. I now head up a team of over 900 and I'm hoping to hit 1000 team members by the end of 2020.
Imagine that. From me needing an extra £200 per month, I've now helped 100's of people to dig themselves out of their own holes and I've made so many new friends along the way.
Who knows where I will go from here? but I do know this... If I had never taken that first step, by risking €41, and hadn't kept talking about this amazing company, and everything it has to offer, then I would not be where I am now. I would still be having sleepless nights and feeling sick to my stomach every time the doorbell rang.
As an old Chinese proverb states, "Every journey of a 1000 miles, starts with a single step". Are you ready to take yours?
Louise Antoine. Sponsor ID: 1010033506