Behind Her Empire: Dermalogica Founder Jane Wurwand on Developing a Skill

Yasmin Nouri

Yasmin is the host of the "Behind Her Empire" podcast, focused on highlighting self-made women leaders and entrepreneurs and how they tackle their career, money, family and life.

Each episode covers their unique hero's journey and what it really takes to build an empire with key lessons learned along the way. The goal of the series is to empower you to see what's possible & inspire you to create financial freedom in your own life.

Dermalogica founder Jane Wurwand

"Learn to do something."

Dermalogica founder Jane Wurwand credits her mother's advice for motivating her and her sisters into higher education and independence. Two of her sisters became nurses. Another became a lab technician. Wurwand studied skin therapy.

"She wanted to make sure that whatever happened, we would have an ability to earn money, to be financially independent with a skill set that we had learned and therefore it could never really be taken away," said Wurwand.

Today, Wurwand is the founder of a multimillion-dollar international brand with a dedicated following. On this week's episode of the Behind Her Empire podcast, she tells her story and what inspired her entrepreneurial passion.


After landing a job as a hairdresser in South Africa for a while, Wurwand found herself moving to California.

"If you've never emigrated to the United States, I will tell you, it was the golden ticket in Willy Wonka's chocolate bar. You did not say no, especially to a green card."

Wurwand soon learned California required a license to become a cosmetologist and found that few places provided the proper training for skin therapists like her. With only $14,000, she launched her own skin therapy courses in a small classroom in Los Angeles.

Those lessons would eventually become her company Dermalogica, one of the world's premier skincare brands.

"We started as an education company, and three years later, launched Dermalogica, because we realized there was no American-made professional salon product either. That's kind of crazy. I mean, who knew," said Wurwand.

Hear more of the Behind Her Empire podcast. Subscribe on Stitcher, Apple Podcasts, Spotify, iHeart Radio or wherever you get your podcasts.

dot.LA Audience Engagement Intern Joshua Letona contributed to this post.

Subscribe to our newsletter to catch every headline.

Cadence

Why These Ukrainian Entrepreneurs Are Making LA Their Home

Aisha Counts
Aisha Counts is a business reporter covering the technology industry. She has written extensively about tech giants, emerging technologies, startups and venture capital. Before becoming a journalist she spent several years as a management consultant at Ernst & Young.
Why These Ukrainian Entrepreneurs Are Making LA Their Home
Joey Mota

Fleeing war and chasing new opportunities, more than a dozen Ukrainian entrepreneurs have landed in Los Angeles, finding an unexpected community in the city of dreams. These entrepreneurs have started companies that are collectively worth more than $300 million, in industries ranging from electric vehicle charging stations to audience monetization platforms to social networks.

Dot.LA spent an evening with this group of Ukrainian citizens, learning what it was like to build startups in Ukraine, to cope with the unimaginable fear of fleeing war, and to garner the resilience to rebuild.

Read moreShow less

Snap’s Fourth Quarter Revenue Was the Company’s Slowest Growth Since Its IPO Six Years Ago

Samson Amore

Samson Amore is a reporter for dot.LA. He holds a degree in journalism from Emerson College and previously covered technology and entertainment for TheWrap and reported on the SoCal startup scene for the Los Angeles Business Journal. Send tips or pitches to samsonamore@dot.la and find him on Twitter @Samsonamore.

​Snap logo over a bunch of snap shots
Sebastian Miño-Bucheli

Snap Inc.’s trend of growing its user base but failing to adequately monetize them continues.

Read moreShow less
https://twitter.com/samsonamore
samsonamore@dot.la
RELATEDEDITOR'S PICKS
LA TECH JOBS
interchangeLA
Trending