Behind the Red Door How Elizabeth Arden’s Legacy Inspired My Coming-of-Age Story in the Beauty Industry by Louise Claire Johnson
This charming book by Louise Claire Johnson combines her memoir and coming-of-age story with the rags to riches tale of the great Elizabeth Arden. Johnson followed in the footsteps of Arden, becoming a marketing executive at the famous company, starting with an internship at just 18. Her journey, however, would take her to a very different place.
When the young farm girl from Ontario waited for the train to NYC in the early 20th century, she did not foresee that she would one day found a huge cosmetics company with branches all over the world, make friends with famous people and fight for women's rights. She paid a heavy price though. Two failed marriages, loneliness and hardship followed her every step of the way. She had a luxurious and interesting life, because of her hard work, but it wasn't terribly happy.
Johnson's journey took her from New York to London and Switzerland on a heady career path, but she also had to pay a big price, becoming much wiser along the way. She read all that she could about Elizabeth Arden, and regarded her as her mentor, but she began to wonder whether a career at the beauty company was what she really wanted, and what she should do with her life...
I especially enjoyed reading about Louise's time in Geneva. Her vivid descriptions of her homesickness and her emotional trauma in such a beautiful place was very moving.
I received this ebook from NetGalley in return for an honest review.