An Industry Study for the Beautiful People
| Peter Klein |
It’s Beauty Imagined: A History of the Global Beauty Industry by Geoffrey Jones (Oxford University Press, 2010). From the blurb:
This book provides the first authoritative history of the global beauty industry from its emergence in the nineteenth century to the present day, exploring how today’s global giants grew. It shows how successive generations of entrepreneurs built brands which shaped perceptions of beauty, and the business organizations needed to market them. They democratized access to beauty products, once the privilege of elites, but they also defined the gender and ethnic borders of beauty, and its association with a handful of cities, notably Paris and later New York. The result was a homogenization of beauty ideals throughout the world.
Sounds like a great study of entrepreneurship, industry dynamics, clustering and network effects, and the relationship between business and culture. Reviewer Ingrid Giertz-Mårtenson says it’s “one of the more fascinating stories in modern business history,” the journey of an industry once seen as “fickle, superficial, and feminine” to a “brand-driven global power house.” The book should make a beautiful addition to your collection!