When the economy tanks, what's a woman to do? For some, selling makeup is the next step. Direct sales of cosmetics and skin care are on the rise, with companies such as Avon and Mary Kay seeing a surge of new representatives as the recession continues. In March, Avon reached the largest number of reps in the company's history, and Mary Kay has 22% more consultants than it did at this time last year.

What's the draw? Flexible schedules and the potential income, as usual. "I could go and work at a local fast food restaurant and make $6.55 an hour," says laid-off worker Tammy Jonsson, adding that she can make up to 10 times that much through Mary Kay. Although she's found another full-time job, she continues to spend about 10 hours per week selling cosmetics. That might not be enough to earn a famous Pink Cadillac, but a much-needed income boost isn't a bad consolation prize.

Photo by Whiskeytango