For International Women’s Day 2020 I want to honor the founders of the cosmetics industry: Coco Chanel, Elizabeth Arden, Estee Lauder, and Helena Rubinstein were all iconic women who built iconic brands that we still use today. 

What makes this group so special in my eyes is that they achieved what was so difficult to achieve in their time. They were building empires when women were still not allowed to vote in the U.S.  On this date I am a woman who works with cosmetics – and can make a living out of it! The cosmetics industry is a multi-billion dollar business and for those of us in the industry, now in the 21st century, who lives in the United States of America, our opportunities are endless!  

Yes, of course, there is still work to do on the gender pay gap, but we are progressing and we have reached milestones that Coco, Elizabeth, Estee, and Helena could have only dreamed of when they started their businesses.

I associate something very special with each of these four iconic women; with Coco, I think of Chanel no. 5…with Elizabeth Arden it’s the Red Door Salon and perfume, with Estee Lauder it’s her iconic red lipstick, and with Helena Rubinstein, I am grateful she created the first waterproof mascara – they were all ahead of their time!

On International Women’s Day, I will be thinking of these four iconic women who created empires and jobs for other women.  I will also be thinking about all the other wonderful women of influence in my life with gratitude; those in my family, those I work with and those I call my friends!