Estée Lauder was founded in 1946 by Mrs. Lauder (henceforth Estée Lauder) with the desire to bring beauty to every woman. For more than half a century it has earned a global reputation for its leading-edge technology and superior efficacy. Today, Estée Lauder's skincare, make-up and fragrance collections are sold in over 130 countries around the world, and its dedication to bringing beauty to every woman, its commitment to scientific breakthroughs and innovation, and its commitment to maintaining good communication with its customers are the foundations of a tradition of excellence that will continue to be a valuable foundation for future growth.
The first half of Estée Lauder's life seems to be a mystery, much like her name. A life of poetry, of truth and fantasy. She never announced her origins to the outside world, but the secret was revealed: she was a Jewish immigrant.
Biographer Lee Ishmael said she was born on 1 July 1908 to a Jewish family, although her family said her birthday was two years earlier than that. In any case, there is no question about Estée Lauder's birthplace, which was Corona, Hungary.
Estée Lauder was born to a Hungarian Jewish hardware shop owner in the Italian immigrant neighbourhood of Queen Street, New York. She was the ninth child in this large family. The young girl inherited her mother's beauty - blonde hair and blue eyes - and had crystal clear skin.
Born with an aversion to her Jewish immigrant identity, she was tired of the ghetto life and tried desperately to escape its peculiar aura and become 100 per cent American. Years later, to escape the memories of her childhood, she changed her name to Yasi to wash away the immigrant tinge. She kept lying to the public that her father was an English gentleman and that she came from a wealthy European family. But when the lie was exposed, it only seemed to add to the magic of her story of enrichment.
At the outbreak of the First World War, the arrival of her chemist uncle changed her life - because he had the secret recipe for skin care oil. The magical skin cream that her uncle brought with him caused Estée to link her only dream with it from then on and began to nurture a dream of a world of beauty.
Estee Lauder, like many business leaders, has done it all wrong. She got her start back then on her uncle's six-in-one cold cream. Even though she would later conquer the world with her own research into youth lotions, she lamented telling people, "I can't believe I built my life on a bottle of snow cream." A medical school dermatologist commented on her uncle's cold cream, saying that it was indeed an effective product, safe and trustworthy.
Estee Lauder was born in Crowntown, New York, which was then a settlement of poor foreign immigrants. Her uncle's name was Scholz, a pharmacist from Hungary, who ran a laboratory behind the Broadway Opera House. Uncle Scholz had invented a number of household chemical products that worked quite well. Before that, the two families worked separately, but it was only when Xiaoz's laboratory was opened and there was a big party for relatives that sixteen-year-old Estée Lauder found out what her uncle did for a living.
Whenever her uncle developed a new product, Estée Lauder was the first to experiment with it. Because of her fair skin, the products she endorsed were very marketable. Slowly getting into the business, Estee Lauder slowly moved out of her uncle's narrow vision and began a sales career and, eventually, became a billionaire. Making her spread bigger was largely down to her own talent, learning and hard work, but the products her uncle provided were the first step to her success. She gradually went on to glory while her uncle's family declined and was eventually evicted from the street when they could not pay their rent. Even at this time, Estee Lauder did not lend a helping hand, at a time when her company was generating millions of dollars in revenue each year.
After her uncle's death, Estée Lauder went so far as to try to sting her uncle to see if he had left any good little recipes that could be used.
Menzel moved to the United States with his family, and whatever life they had in Hungary, they were clearly only lower-middle class in America. The family lived in Queens, New York, where the poor were concentrated, and their father worked first as a tailor and then in the hardware business. The First World War broke out soon after they arrived in America, followed by the arrival of their uncle Schutz. Schutz was a pharmacist, specialising in creams and the like, and as he cooked his recipe on a paraffin stove, Estée Lauder seemed to see her future.
In 1930, she married Joseph, whom she had been dating for three years, and became Mrs Lautelle. Whether according to her birthday in 1908 or 1906, Estée Lauder was still young at the time. Three years after their marriage, they had their first child: Leonard.
But not long after the happy honeymoon, she set to work: making her own skin cream at home and peddling it to the women around her. When she registered her family's telephone number in New York that year, she put "home occupation" not as her husband's "accountant", but as "Lauder chemist" ---This marked their first foray into the world of beauty.
But their marriage also fractured as Esther became more focused on her career. When she was 31 years old, her husband filed for divorce.
In 1939, Estée Lauder divorced her husband. Sometime after the divorce, she explained the marriage thus, "I married very young and one must have thought I would miss quite a few glorious moments in my life, but instead I found that I had gotten a most agreeable husband." This is clearly a sign of things to come.
In the years after her split from her husband, Estée Lauder was not idle; she met Arnold Van Amerijen and became his close friend. Van Ameriken went on to become the head of a perfume group. He was a great supporter of Estée Lauder in perfumery. As it turned out, he was also credited with many of Estee Lauder's products. The two men were very close and their friendship lasted a lifetime. But the older Estée Lauder got, the clearer she knew what she needed. He sent word to his ex-husband through a mutual friend of the couple, hoping to ease the tensions brought on by the divorce. "He was such a good man, I don't know why I broke up with him".
Joseph was a silk and button businessman, though he was clearly not as good at business as his wife. He also had a soft ear, and in December 1942 Joseph gave in to his wife's sweet talk. The two were brought back together, and then their second child was born. The couple never separated again until Joseph's death in 1982.