As we all know, March is Women’s History Month, and there’s nothing we love more than celebrating the achievements of powerful women and their impact on the world. Today we’re highlighting 7 illustrious women and the ways they pioneered change for good in the beauty industry.


Coco Chanel

Creator of the perfect fragrance in 1921 

A nose for success? Coco Chanel set out to create a fragrance that was as complex and arresting as the women who would wear it. At the time, scents largely fell into two categories: pure florals that were light, quick to fade and worn by professional women, or musk-based perfumes that were heavy, long-lasting and favored by sex workers. But three years after the end of WW1, Coco theorized that a new, more liberated generation of women would have an appetite for a fragrance that was different and reflective of the unique and multifaceted roles they played in society. 

After being introduced to a master parfumier and testing several scents, she fell in love with No 5 on the spot, and the name stuck. It’s been said that women would stop in their tracks when they passed her, asking about this gorgeous scent. Her iconic perfume is more than a symbol of self-actualization, it democratized luxury. While Chanel fashions weren’t accessible to all, a bottle of Chanel No 5 was an affordable indulgence for many. Even classic bombshell Marilyn Monroe loved the scent. When asked what she wore to bed she famously said, “Five drops of Chanel No. 5 – nothing else." Coco Chanel’s influence is a masterclass in generational beauty!

Madam C.J. Walker

Hair entrepreneur & first female self-made millionaire in America

As they say, necessity is the mother of invention. When Madam C.J. Walker was facing hair issues in the 1890s, she struggled to find products that targeted hair and scalp health for African American women, so she took matters into her own hands. She created her own treatments by mixing ingredients from the drugstore and saw results. At Poro College, she learned proper hair care techniques and the fundamentals of business operations before starting her own door-to-door sales company in 1906. Her success brought her to Central America and the Caribbean – creating the first international company of its kind.

To meet rising demand, she opened her own factory and beauty school in Pittsburgh where she trained other women on grooming, styling and sales techniques before expanding into Harlem and beyond. In a time when opportunities for women of color were scarce, Madam C.J. Walker supported other women by placing them in management positions, where they thrived. A true pioneer in the beauty industry, her products paved the way for others and made her the first Black female self-made millionaire. We love to see stories of women lending a hand to help each other succeed.

Estée Lauder

Cosmetic entrepreneur & co-founder of Estee Lauder Companies

Mentorship is a beautiful thing. Growing up with an uncle who was a successful chemist inspired Estée Lauder to think beyond the typical path for young girls her age. She started concocting her own skincare creams under his wing and although simple, her early formulations were lauded as being effective and ahead of their time. As she grew in her craft, she also developed a keen eye for beauty and a talent for connecting with people – an asset to her lifelong business ventures. Her high-touch, hands-on method of applying products to clients was disarming and created a fast connection between her and her customers.

She officially established The Estée Lauder Companies Inc. in 1946, and spanned every role from dreamer and chemist to promoter and demonstrator. She was a trailblazer in many regards, from spearheading packaging aesthetics to being the first to give away samples as “free gifts with purchase”. She knew that every detail of the customer experience was an opportunity to make their lives better. Estée was personally involved in every aspect of the operation and her time, attention and passion paid off in the long run – growing from 4 core products to a multinational legacy comprising 28 beauty companies. Our natural resourcefulness is the reason why women are just as successful in STEM as they are in fashion. Beauty is science!

Pat McGrath

Renowned makeup artist & head of billion-dollar company Pat McGrath Labs

Recoloring the beauty landscape. Growing up in the 1970s and 80s when women of color were underrepresented and underserved by the beauty industry, Pat McGrath has always been focused on redefining beauty standards. From the very beginning, she’s been a strong advocate for inclusive model casting and a leader in broad shade ranges. With no formal training at the start of her career, her unorthodox method (fingers vs. brushes) and experimental style have launched her into high-fashion royalty where she now works with the biggest names in fashion, photography and more. 

Now every fashion week, she creates bespoke looks for 40+ shows in NYC, London, Paris and Milan, but the looks don’t end there. Her avant-garde looks featuring gold accents, bejeweled features and over-the-top eyes have inspired countless others on social media and in everyday fashion. Each shade in her line is universally flattering and rigorously tested on people of all complexions. She’s written the proverbial book on makeup that empowers individuals to be the best versions of themselves.

Michelle Phan

YouTube beauty pioneer, self-taught makeup artist & entrepreneur 

Early adopters shape the future. In 2008, Michelle Phan was a junior in college staring down an economic recession and a mountain of student debt. With her new YouTube channel, she knew gaining followers could open up opportunities to build her resume. A visionary, she saw YouTube as the future of TV – a platform almost everyone was on – and noticed there weren’t many makeup tutorials out there for people wanting to sharpen their skills. They were limited to beauty counter lessons, where there may be pressure to buy expensive products or beauty classes and curriculums that didn’t fit into the lives of hobbyists and everyday makeup enthusiasts.

She worked hard at creating the kind of content she wanted to see and has racked up billions of views while making makeup mastery accessible to the masses and inspiring an entire generation of makeup artists, beauty influencers and content creators. Her love of affordable makeup also inspired her to create the multi-million dollar subscription service Ipsy, which catered to the individual preferences of the subscriber. She’s since started her own prestige brand, EM Cosmetics, for pros and everyday wearers alike. She credits her success to putting herself into the shoes of her customers and following her instincts. We hear you, Michelle!


Founder of Fenty Beauty

A standout for everyone. We don’t believe every celebrity brand is worth its salt, but Fenty Beauty by Rihanna is a unicorn. Instead of relying on her starpower to sell products, Fenty gained a competitive edge by outperforming competitors with its impressive shade range designed to suit every skin tone out there – particularly for the albino community and women of color. With 50 foundation shades to choose from and concealer to match, the brand’s focus is all about inclusivity. Age is just a number, every skin tone can glow and everyone deserves to feel beautiful. 

Leah Garcia

Founder of NULASTIN®, TV personality & skincare entrepreneur

A fearless female-founding story. From a young age, Leah Garcia has always been a vivacious explorer in life and career, unafraid to branch out, create, and confidently seize the opportunities in front of her. Her incredible story includes many facets, including her career as a TV personality, professional cyclist, entrepreneur and so much more.


During Leah’s time as a professional cyclist, she spent many days outdoors clocking miles and victories in harsh wind and sun exposure. As a TV personality, Leah loved engaging with her audiences and spent hours in front of the camera. So, when she started to see signs of premature aging and facial asymmetry – a residual effect from Bell’s Palsy (facial paralysis) in her 20s – Leah set out to find a skincare line that could reverse past damage and prolong her youthful glow. She wanted something that was performance-based, scientifically-proven and ethically-derived. When nothing on the market fit the bill, Leah took matters into her own hands. 

A natural connector, Leah collaborated with the world’s leading pioneer in microbiology to bring a transformative active cosmetic blend to market. And in 2016, the launch of NULASTIN® marked the debut of an innovative elastin regeneration technology that improves skin elasticity and tone to restore self-confidence, boost skin and hair health, and reignite vitality from the inside out. 

Like the legendary Estée, Leah is personally involved in every aspect of her business – innovating tirelessly to make people’s lives better. Her collection is cruelty-free and made locally in Colorado, U.S.A. to ensure freshness and maximum bioavailability. 

With a fast-paced life brimming with adventure, Leah vows to stay approachable and authentic. Her favorite quote, “Remember where you came from,” is at the heart of her brand and remains her own guiding motto as she makes decisions every day. 

From women far ahead of their time to those who refuse to be put into a box by others’ expectations, we believe true beauty comes from the desire to make a difference. Like all those before us, we strive to help each other succeed – no matter what our ambitions may be or how impossible they may seem. The secret ingredient is always confidence.

Our entire collection supports the body’s natural ability to stimulate the replenishment of elastin while defending against matrix protein damage caused by aging, stress, sun exposure, weight changes and other factors. You can try NULASTIN® risk-free because every one of our products is backed by a 100% Performance Guarantee. If our product(s) do not perform to your expectations, you can exchange or return them at any time [Terms and Conditions Apply].