Unravelling the journey of LuLaRoe, the infamous leggings company that climbed the ladder of success by robbing their employees is what Amazon Prime’s LuLaRich is about. Directed by Jenner Furst and Julia Willoughby Nason, the new docu-series is reminiscent of their other film Fyre Fraud (2019).
The series is divided into four episodes and has real-life footage indicating the involvement of real-life characters. This documentary is a multi-person perspective story and shows us the consequences of a limitless multi-level marketing scheme.
– LuLaRich Review contains spoilers –
LuLaRich: The Real Story of LuLaRoe
At the beginning of the first episode, the interviewer presents us with the primary question that this series is based on: ‘What is the real story of LuLaRoe?’ In reply, we find LuLaRoe’s co-founders DeAnne and Mark Stidham seated in front of the cameras ready to unveil the story of what lead to the bright, quirky fashion company be issued a lawsuit from The state of Washington.
LuLaRoe started in a chance of luck when DeAnne started sewing and selling maxi skirts. The fun prints saw a way into people’s hearts and it was by 2013 that the company was officially registered. Through this series, we don’t just witness the journey of LuLaRoe from 2013 but also what came before and after.
Being from entrepreneurial backgrounds, both DeAnne and Mark knew how to sell a business to make a business. They painted their dreams based on money and material and utilized the asset of feminism and at-home-home mothers to build this corporate tornado.
However, what the docu-series clearly nods at is the inefficiency and the lack of accountability in the founders that lead to the company’s downfall. With the emergence of Facebook Live and the hustle of a limitless income behind the veil of a pyramid scheme, women invested their time and effort in this crazy world of LuLaRoe fashion. The products were built on the urgency of fast fashion and exclusivity. And, LuLaRoe promoted a communal community rather than the typical “retailer competition”.
Another factor that the docu-series helps us look at is the greed of incentives over cash as it makes people feel more important and connected to the big brand. LuLaRoe was on its feet when it came to offering their retailers a bonus be it in the form of a paycheck, a nice exclusive watch or getting on the deck of the LuLaRoe cruise. They landed people who loved fashion with their dream job of being beauty consultants who could earn from home.
The real blow, however, came when everyone slowly started to realize how LuLaRoe was aiming to form a cult-like environment and brainwashing people into leaving their jobs and keep reinvesting in the company. The extent was even visible on social media as the founders asked everyone to use the hashtag #becauseoflularoe for every achievement in their life. The company earned more than it could sustain breaking the business model of sustainable income.
LuLaRich: Reinforcing Patriarchy
Although LuLaRoe promoted an image of women being the boss of their business, the disguise of feminism they used to lure vulnerable women into their trap is something that stings you hard while watching the series. The lives of aspiring women were ruined under the box of a fashion crime.
It was astounding to see that almost all the recruiters and retailers under LuLaRoe were women but most of them did not have an identity and were lost in the patriarchal values of the company. What looked like LuLaRoe was a way to empower women was rather the oldest trick in the book to reinforce patriarchy- “Keep the Women at Home.”
In fact, one of the interviewees in the show quotes how founder DeAnne once said, “All you have to do as a woman is just get on your knees for five minutes a day and please your husband, and then your husband will let you buy whatever you want”. This scheming was done to involve the husbands in the LuLaRoe world alongside their wives so they could quit their jobs and have all the eggs in one basket.
LuLaRich: The Final Verdict
LuLaRich does a good job of portraying the different sides to the same story and helping us get an insight into the company’s rise and fall. It is crisp, well-made and holds your attention and it makes you aware about the misrepresentation of feminism and certain business schemes.
LuLaRich is streaming now on Amazon Prime Video.Follow us on Instagram & Facebook to keep yourself updated with the latest news and reviews.