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January 1st, 2015 at 12:00 pm

Author: Carita Rizzo
Photo: Tim Melideo
Information provided by: Angeleno

Dermalogica founder and visionary Jane Wurwand creates a new initiative to beautifully support female entrepreneurs.

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Commanding the stage at Dermalogica’s sprawling 145,000-square-foot headquarters in Carson, Calif., founder Jane Wurwand introduces her success story to a group of potential dermatology students. Reactions in the room range from inspiration to enthusiasm and, in many cases, awe.

Wurwand’s determination and accomplishments are so impressive, it’s hard not to be intimidated. But spend time talking to her and you discover that although her vision for Dermalogica was clear from the start, her multimillion-dollar empire was built slowly, one step at a time. It’s a message she has conveyed to the more than 100,000 skin therapists her company has trained since its inception in 1986 and one she now spreads as founder of Financial Independence Through Entrepreneurship, which issues microfinance loans to women worldwide. This month, the nonprofit rolls out its new FITE Future Entrepreneurs program, offering at-risk women skin therapy education scholarships and training to help them build successful careers. The program was introduced this fall at the Clinton Global Initiative conference and has been lauded by Hillary Clinton herself. As for Wurwand, “The great thing about FITE, for me, is I get a chance to shine a light on an industry that empowers women economically,” she says. “When you go and you support a woman in a salon, you’re supporting a woman entrepreneur. This is a powerhouse.”

So is she. The Scotland-born, England-bred entrepreneur first came to Los Angeles in 1983 and quickly realized the need to provide aestheticians with proper training in the United States. She and her husband, Raymond, started Dermalogica in Marina del Rey with only $14,000; today, the company boasts a 125-product, locally produced skincare line stocked in more than 30,000 salons globally.

Her advice for world domination is surprisingly simple: “You need to be fully authentic in who you are,” she says. “Because when you are fully authentic, you are at your most powerful. And that’s where you’re going to make your difference.”

WURWAND’S HOTS
Being a disrupter, dog-shaming pictures on the Internet, baths and relaxing, incandescent light, dinner parties ‘round my kitchen table, driving to Santa Barbara

WURWAND’S NOTS
Air conditioning, inauthenticity, artificially colored flowers, generalizations about gender

 

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