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Estée Lauder

(Josephine Esther Mentzer)
beautician, business executive
Born: 1906
Birthplace: Corona, Queens, N.Y.

With her husband, Joseph Lauder, she developed a line of cosmetics but was unable to convince Madison Avenue that her small advertising budget was a worthwhile account. She therefore relied upon the innovative notion of sampling, thereby allowing potential customers to try the product before they bought it. Despite her small ad budget, she successfully targeted the high end of the market, selling exclusively through department stores and boutiques. The best known products are Youth Dew beauty oil (1953), Clinique (1968), and Aramis for men (1965).

Died: April 24, 2004

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