LifeVantage and Protandim Review
One promise that Aunty will make is no bull shit (excuser mon francais) about things, events, and people that are recommended or reviewed. If you check out the LifeVantage website, Protandim is the cure-all, heal-all fountain of youth; and TrueScience anti-aging cream will make your skin beautiful, wrinkle resistant, and corrected. This is Aunty’s honest review of Protandim and the LifeVantage company products and business. However, the standard disclaimer must also kick in, so please note that Aunty is not a medical, financial, or any other kind of licensed expert so what works for Aunty may or may not work for you, and vice versa.
UPDATE: Aunty has been “terminated” as a distributor. Review still valid, iao.
First, TrueScience cream
It smells wonderful, goes on easily and feels good. It is quite pricey – at $70 per bottle plus shipping and tax. Aunty tried it on just one half of her face to see if there was a visible difference (like the Nu-skin demo which is quite dramatic) for the first month. There was a difference, especially since Aunty doesn’t normally put any type of skin cream on so any product would have helped. My skin felt moisturized and soft but other than feeling softer, no visible difference. In fact, I looked more tanned and yellower, if that makes sense.
The next month, Aunty started putting it on her whole face, twice a day. A little went a long way and the smell was still wonderful – kind of fruity, reminding me of one of Estee Lauder’s expensive creams that I used to try as a sample. In that 2nd trial month, a bunch of us high school friends went to Vegas and I really noticed that my eyes felt super dry and rather irritated. I used eye drops morning, noon and night, but still no relief.
While in Vegas, I went to the bestest spa at the Green Valley Ranch Resort and saw the bestest facial therapist Elaine to get the bestest skin brightening facial. Pure bliss. I bought an $84 tiny bottle of Skinceuticals eye cream there, because at my age, my face and eye area needs help. [note: haven’t been using the eye cream recently because I am using NeriumAD for my wrinkles and skintone at night and the two products are too opposing, imo.]
My eyes continued to be irritated and dry and for weeks after the Vegas trip, so I kept using eyedrops, to no avail.
I then decided to stop using the eye cream, and also TrueScience cream. In less than 24 hours, my eyes felt normal. Wonderfully normal. I was allergic to either the eye cream or TrueScience, or both. After doing some testing of this and not that, and that and not this, I discovered that I had a reaction to the TrueScience cream, most likely because of that wonderful scent.
So I stopped using TrueScience anti-aging cream altogether. I miss it because it felt good on. It was a light lotion, with an easy to use pump bottle, easy to apply, and it did make my skin feel soft and smooth. I do believe that it is a good product, but until the unscented version rolls out (hopefully), it is not good for Aunty.
And Now for Protandim
Before I started taking Protandim, I had a standard blood test done at Clinical Laboratory. My cholesterol levels were borderline high as well as my glucose levels. Bone density test was very poor and of concern enough that my doctor recommend that I start on Fosomax (which I refused and use Strontium instead). My energy level was low during the day, many times I felt great fatigue in the afternoon even while driving and wanted to just lie down and sleep.
I felt “old” and getting older. My ability to concentrate and continue the regular and mundane tasks of accounting, paperwork, investing, learning, shopping, organizing, etc. was beginning to feel overwhelming and I worried constantly about what I was forgetting. I almost dreaded going to TaiChi classes because of my inability to remember how to do the steps, even though I have been going to the same class for over 2 years. My average brain age on the brain test was about 34, occasionally 28, and sometimes 38 or higher if I was tired or it was late at night. I woke up everyday very tired, with stiff hands and a cloudiness over my eyes, which cleared up after about 10 minutes. I had some knee stiffness and pain, but it was not bad enough for me to take anything for it.
Day 1. I began taking one Protandim tablet once a day around noon from October 1, 2011.
Day 2. I felt a bit yucky. So did Uncle. My nose was a bit runny for about a week, which is unusual since didn’t have a cold.
Day 3. When I awoke, my eyes were clear. The normal cloudiness of vision was gone. Quite amazing. Every morning from this point on, I wake up and can clearly see the time on the clock without any blurry vision (though I still need reading glasses).
Week 2. Usually when I eat eggplant (in the nightshade family of veggies) my hands are extra stiff and sore in the morning. This morning, after having eaten spicy garlic eggplant (yum yum), my hands felt normal. No stiffness. No soreness.
Month 2. I feel sharper, don’t have brain fog anymore. Even though I had missed weeks of TaiChi – my memory for the steps was far better than every before. My sensei Virginia commented on it – she expected me to have forgotten everything after such a long absence.
I stopped inputting into my journal after month #2. Not because I forgot to. It was because I was “sold” on Protandim. It was working wonderfully for me and it is hard to report about nothingness (the state of not having issues).
Currently. I feel more energized. I wake up without feeling groggy or tired (quite amazing). I very rarely need naps anymore. My eyes have remained clear. I continue to do many different tasks and do not feel overwhelmed. My mental capacity seems to be sharp – I don’t feel like I am “losing” it and I am getting more done (except for my clutter). In fact, I am taking on more busy-ness nowadays, and able to handle the mental and physical chores of additional responsibilities without the usual fatigue and stress I used to have.
My average brain age on the brain test is now 26. Many times I score 23 when I am in the zone (more often than not), and the worst that I do nowadays is 28.
My fingernails seem stronger and are getting longer without cracking. There is a horizontal ridgeline on my nails that would correspond to 6 months ago when I started taking Protandim. Much to Uncle’s happiness, I also feel sexier and clothes look better on me.
The occasional pain in my knees have seemed to be gone. The absence of pain is not as noticeable as the presence of pain. It is quite a nice feeling.
Uncle is neither a believer or a non believer at this point. He doesn’t take Protandim everyday, only when he remembers, and in the beginning would not take it for weeks at a time.
From Aunty’s rather biased viewpoint, he seems to complain of his chronic back pain much less, and he gets out of bed easily rather than heavily. He still forgets his cell phone at home in the morning at least once a week – which drives me nuts because it rings (with a rather loud tango score) quite often for his service and business calls.
He feels less flabby to me, or maybe that is because my eyes are clearer and my nails are longer.
He went to a meeting with me because he was curious to hear what others thought and felt, and now he is quite taken with the product and talks about it to people he knows because of the testimonials he has heard and his skeptical recognition of feeling better.
He has also just started drinking Amway water and wearing a balance necklace and bracelet and says he feels good. With Uncle, it is hard to say what is making him feel good right now because of the multitude of things he has on or is ingesting. [note: Uncle ran out of the Amway water and has stopped drinking it. Thank goodness because that was rather expensive water and there hasn’t been any difference in how he feels since its termination. He only wears his balance necklace when he feels like it. It looks a bit like jewelry on him – looks nice, actually.]
How to benefit
For those who just want the product, the best way to order is to become a preferred customer. By going to a distributor website (provided for distributors by the company) and selecting “shop” or “sign up”, you will be directed to a order page. Choosing the “Preferred Customer” option after placing an order will give you the best price and put you in the auto ship mode, which can be cancelled quite easily with a phone call or email at anytime.
Two* One new PC (Preferred Customer) programs has begun recently. As a PC, if you have a continuous auto ship of Protandim, after each 6 months you will receive a free bottle of the TrueScience Anti-Aging creme. Nice! That is a $70 value. If you are getting the TrueScience creme for 6 months, you will get a free bottle of Protandim, $40 value. Not bad, but the other way is a better deal. If you are receiving both Protandim and TrueScience creme for 6 months, you get a free bottle of Protandim. Not as good a deal, so a better way would be to split the order and have your roommate or somebody else be a PC under you.
The other new PC program is rather exciting too. If you, as a PC, sign up another person to be a PC on autoship (i.e. your roommate), you will get a credit of 25% of their order on the next month. You could sign up a lot of people and get up to $120 of credit every month! That is a pretty sweet deal.
You and they will also get the free Protandim or TrueScience creme after every 6 continuous months of autoship – sweet!
*(I am very disappointed in the Lifevantage company because of the fickle nature of the first promotion being initiated in November 2011, and then dropped 7 months later in June 2012. As a distributor, Aunty apologizes to anyone who signed up and now is not able to get their free product.
Because of this dropped promotion, Aunty’s opinion of LifeVantage is that the product Protandim is excellent, but the company is not. Policy changes that affect distributors are understandable though unwelcome. Policy changes that affect customers negatively are irresponsible and a reflection of bad management decisions. However, for new customers and distributors, what happened in the past has already happened, and so forgive Aunty for venting here.)
[There was a recall for certain lots of Protandim so if you bought Protandim from Aunty or anyone else, please let us know, asap. We can get you your free replacement bottles. Aunty has contacted her customers and several do have partial bottles of the affected lot, which are being replaced. Buy Protandim with confidence from this point forward since the company has identified the third party source of the affected ingredient and corrected the issue.][[February 2012 update: more recalls for older stock has been announced. Please see the recall for Protandim page for updated specifics.]] The company has come out with this statement regarding the recalled products: “After consulting with medical experts, we believe that these materials pose no serious risk to consumers’ health. Furthermore, the Company has not received any report of a health problem related to this issue.”
Aunty was very excited to find out that the company was coming out with Protandim for dogs. We have 2 big dogs who are getting older and slower in getting up. We were giving our two dogs 1/2 tablet of Protandim in their food. They are perkier, the tumors on their backs are shrinking, and they have much more energy since we got them on the product. We also give them those glucosamine tablets for dogs from Trader Joes (big bottle and cheap!)
In February 2013, the Canine Health tablets were released, and Aunty immediately ordered a bottle for the doggies. It cost $25 – which I thought was reasonable enough for our doggies’ health, and it was chicken/liver flavored so the doggies would like to eat it (rather than Protandim which was not good tasting – especially for picky dogs).
It received a rather small bottle, with 30 disc shaped chews, about 5/8″ in diameter. Smelled okay. One bottle would last a month for one dog, right? WRONG, unless you have small little doggies. It would take 3 discs per day for our larger dogs – which means the Canine Health would last only 10 days for 1 dog, and in our case, 5 days for 2 dogs. For a month’s supply, we would have to order 6 bottles per month = $150 on auto shipment, every month, or $75 per month per dog.
Does it work for dogs? I dunno and probably won’t know since it is too expensive for our big dogs, imo. For now, Aunty will continue to smash up 1/2 tablet of Protandim and give it to them with their food. They may not like the taste of it, but they woof down their food so fast, they get it into their system anyway.
The Canine Health tablets will be used as occasional treats. Expensive, occasional treats that are good for them.
The business of Protandim
LifeVantage offers a lot of different ways to earn income as a distributor. The best way to learn about it is to go to a meeting. Meetings are held all over the nation and can be found on the BigBlueCalendar.com website. Choose your State and current or future month, and the meetings by area pop up. Some meetings are great for people wanting to learn about the product and its business opportunities. Some meetings are geared toward distributors. This video which highlights an ABC Primetime episode several years ago is the company’s biggest marketing tool:
VIDEO DELETED – Aunty warned not to use LifeVantage related content or else ???.
This is a multi-level marketing business. Aunty has been involved in a few other MLMs, but they were too labor intensive and pushy. LifeVantage’s compensation plan is simple and rewards those who are willing and able to promote the benefits of the product and/or the business. Having your own info and sales page website:
MyLifeVantage.com/aunty where people can browse for information and sign up as a distributor or customer on their own takes most of the responsibility of ordering, receiving and delivering off of Aunty’s back and automates the process easily.
There are a lot of good people at LifeVantage meetings. Anna Umemura and Donna Mercado Kim (State Legislator) are gracious hosts and uplines that keep us in the loop. Donna goes the extra mile in researching and digging into the complaints and issues about the product and company because her public image and integrity are on the line. Anna gives so much to her distributors by coordinating monthly Premier Schools with top company distributors. The message is to push, push, push and you too will be on top.
My girlfriend Cookie is a pit bull in human form and is the one who head locked me into this company. However, I am glad for that because the product works well for me.
The publicly traded stock LFVN makes for a strange bedfellow
The stock (LFVN) was at 20¢ last year, rose to $1.35, then steeply climbed to $4 recently. It has since retracted to the $3 range* and holding around that price. *note this was in November of 2012. LifeVantage is now listed on the Nasdaq.
Recently, after the recall of Protandim in December 2012, the stock price dropped from ~$2.85 to a low of $1.80 and in January 2013, it began been rising again. This is a contradiction to what makes sense. With the thousands of replacements for the recall of Protandim, as well as the customer base dropping out because of it (Aunty can attest to losing customers), the profit margin of LifeVantage has to take a major hit. One factor that has not hit the company’s bottom line yet could be how slow LifeVantage is replacing bottles, since it has been over a month, and Aunty has yet to receive her replacements. Perhaps the bottom line has not hit the stock price of LifeVantage – yet.
As of January 18, 2013, the stock LFVN has risen to $3 and seems to want to go higher. This, even in light of the recalls and many of her customers dropping out of their autoship orders because they now have replacement bottles or are scared because of the recall. However, the company just recently announced that they are expanding in Japan (they have been there already for years) and this might have excited stock buyers.
In picking stocks, Aunty is spot on in choosing the WRONG way, so maybe it is a good thing to do the opposite of what Aunty thinks. With LFVN though, it is like walking on jello, imo. The company had a recall of Protandim on December 5, 2012. The stock priced dropped. The company announced on December 14, 2012 that it would be repurchasing $5 million in stocks to “improve their balance sheet and invest in future expansion opportunities”. Aunty sold her shares at a loss, and now it seems the stock price is going up (see – do the opposite of Aunty).
The dark side of LifeVantage
Because of how well Protandim works for Aunty’s well being, I am a bit torn between a promoter or a whistle blower about LifeVantage.
There are skeletons in the closet of Protandim’s history. Google search, and you will find some rather underhanded mistruths about some of the key players in this company. However, for Aunty, the product works wonderfully in spite of the skeletons.
Number one son says that the 5 ingredients can be bought for less than $2 per month, and that may be true, but having the convenience of a tablet to swallow once a day rather than 5 dabs of this or that each day justifies paying $40 for a bottle. Rip off? It depends on who you talk to.
Aunty does not get a cost break in getting her monthly product, though her preferred customers can get their monthly order for free or discounted if they sign people up as preferred customers under themselves. Go figure – that is a policy that does not encourage distributor growth. So if you ask Aunty about the best way to buy the product, Aunty would say to become a preferred customer on auto ship rather than pay over $600 for a distributorship (comes with bottles), and sign people up under yourself as customers in order to get your product for free or at a discount. As a preferred customer, you will not make commissions, but you will be able to have zero cost for product.
Currently, Aunty makes about $50/month in commissions, which is used to pay for a monthly bottle of Protandim ($45 after shipping and tax). Breaking even is okay, but not great business. [update, now Aunty makes nada.]
If you want to enroll as a distributor in order to make a decent living at it, I would say to look at Nerium International instead. The philosophies of the two companies are so different. It is easier to advance and make income with Nerium not just because of the growth potential of this new company with a dynamic beauty product, but because of the heart of the company, founder Jeff Olson.
Aunty could sell bags and bags of kakimochi (rice crackers that smell) door to door when she was a Brownie because she wanted to be top dog in sales for her troop (achieved). If Aunty really put her time and effort into it, she could be a top dog in the very lucrative business opportunities of LifeVantage. The success stories of some distributors are inspirational.
However, Aunty has not been impressed with the business opportunity of LifeVantage, especially compared to Nerium International. I believe it is because the top echelon of the companies have very different philosophies from each other as well as very different backgrounds and expertise. Aunty will continue to be a distributor for LifeVantage because the benefits and improvements that Aunty has experienced and continues to experience have made Aunty a living testimonial to the product of Protandim.
If you see Aunty in person and are curious about the products, ask about it and Aunty will give you some samples.
Good health, great wealth, and blessings for which you are eternally grateful is Aunty’s wish for you.
[Aunty’s disclaimer: This is not a cheap product – it can’t be because of the commissions and multi-levelness of the distributor structure (kind of a Catch 22). This product works wonders on some people, and not on others. That being said, Aunty thinks she has gained an extra 10 years of youth and will continue to take Protandim forever. ]
[note about Protandim/LifeVantage: Aunty doesn’t take Protandim anymore. LifeVantage told Aunty that she had to remove anything related to LifeVantage from her website so Aunty removed most of it, except for Aunty’s review. Not good enough for LifeVantage so they have dropped Aunty as a distributor and foolishly (in Aunty’s opinion) also stopped Aunty’s monthly $45 Protandim shipment. Ah well, such is life. Aunty has moved on and now takes a capsule of Curcumin daily and feels as good or better.]