• Why International Women’s Day? Because It’s About You

    IWD collage

    The International Dermal Institute joins Dermalogica and FITE (Financial Independence Through Entrepreneurship) to celebrate this year’s highly-anticipated International Women’s Day by taking the Pledge for Parity – and we want you to do the same!

    International Women’s Day, held during National Women’s History Month, honors the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The Pledge for Parity aims to accelerate progress toward closing the pay gap between men and women, who perform 66 percent of the world’s work, yet only earn 10 percent of the world’s income.

    In 2015, the World Economic Forum predicted that at the world’s currently “glacial” rate of progress, it would take until 2133 to achieve global gender parity, or equality. That’s over a century away! By taking the pledge and raising awareness now, we can help speed change.

    Why is this important to professional skin therapists? All over the world, women have faced discrimination in the workforce, particularly when attempting to access business loans. In developing countries, nine out of 10 women-owned businesses have no access to loans. Even some of the most successful professional skin therapists in our network were once denied loans for salons or spas because their businesses were thought “unproductive” or “shallow.”

    The fact is, salons are a global economic force. In the U.S. alone, women make up 85 percent of the salon industry compared to 47 percent of the overall U.S. workforce. More and more people are realizing that when women earn income, they reinvest 90 percent of it into their families, leading to growth in both the global economy as well as in their own communities.

    “The story of women’s struggle for equality belongs to no single feminist nor to any one organization but to the collective efforts of all who care about human rights,” says world-renowned feminist and political activist Gloria Steinem.

    Dermalogica’s global initiative FITE helps women entrepreneurs start and grow businesses, so they can become financially independent and able to support their families and communities at large. This year, FITE is focused on expanding the FITE Future Entrepreneurs program, which combines the missions of Dermalogica and The International Dermal Institute ­to advance education and financial literacy for women and girls in the industry.

    “For nearly 30 years, Dermalogica has empowered women in the salon industry,” said Dermalogica and FITE Founder and Chief Visionary Jane Wurwand. “The FITE Future Entrepreneurs program is an opportunity to bring a new group of extraordinary young women into the Dermalogica Tribe and train them not just for a job, but for a career.”

    Through mentorship and coaching, FITE Future Entrepreneurs aids in building a strong community of women who support each other to achieve their goals. The unique program provides not only education and vocational training, but also an opportunity for more women to own businesses, thereby changing their lives and the communities in which they live.

    Now it’s time to do your part! Take the pledge today, or visit for ideas on how to celebrate International Women’s Day near you. Share with us your #IWD2016 celebrations and what this day means to you by tagging us @joinFITE.

  • Why I Dare to Give, and You Should Too

    LG Headshot“I just don’t have the time.

    But I’m not qualified.

    I can’t find the right organization to work with.

    I can’t make a difference; I’m only one person.”

    Any of these sound familiar? You’re not alone. Most people have avoided the act of giving—whether they meant to or not—within their lifetimes, but this holiday season we challenge you to find a way.

    give backTo make giving easier than ever, there’s #GivingTuesday, a global day dedicated to giving back. Held the Tuesday after Thanksgiving, Black Friday and Cyber Monday, it’s an opportunity for people around the world to come together and focus on one common purpose: to celebrate generosity and to give.

    “But I’m a small business owner and don’t have the time or resources to give back.”

    Giving back is a win-win scenario for your business. Studies show that consumers around the world prefer to buy products and services from businesses that give back. In fact, 46% of consumers are willing to pay extra for these products and services. As professional skin therapists and salon owners, you have the opportunity to give back to your community while also drawing attention to your business and attracting new potential clients.

    Whether a non-profit organization, book club or even potluck dinner, individuals are always looking to be part of something greater than themselves. Giving Tuesday provides you with the opportunity to work with your clients to give back and, perhaps, appeal to new consumers as well.

    So the next question is obvious: how do you participate?

    It’s easy! Donate to your favorite charity or cause on Giving Tuesday. If you don’t have one yet, visit to research ideas. Check out what’s happening in your local community this year on Giving Tuesday (December 1, 2015), and be a part of it!

    Or join us to help women and girls achieve Financial Independence Through Entrepreneurship! Visit to find out how. Always remember that even the smallest gesture goes a long way. Together we can all make a difference for someone, somewhere, somehow.

    How will you be giving back? Tell us @joinFITE #GivingTuesday.

  • Morning Joe with Jane Wurwand

    Watch our chief visionary Jane Wurwand on MSNBC’s Morning Joe as she discusses the significance and economic impact of our industry, and how FITE helps women entrepreneurs worldwide.

  • This Is Why We FITE on Nelson Mandela Day

    On July 18th, 2014, IDI Canada took part in our annual celebration of Nelson Mandela Day in Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal. Each year on Nelson Mandela’s birthday, we commemorate his legacy and values by devoting 67 minutes of good will through volunteering and community service.

    At our Toronto Headquarters, we welcomed 30 women from Fred Victor, a community center for underprivileged women in Toronto. We held a high-energy skin savvy presentation where the women cleansed and moisturized their skin. The women then broke into smaller groups to receive a shoulder/back massage, hand massage/exfoliation and make-up touch up!

    Our teams in Vancouver and Montreal also shared in the celebration by putting together backpacks filled with goodies and personal care items for homeless and at-risk youth. Our Vancouver team prepared backpacks for the community service campaign Project Backpack while our Montreal team did the same for the non-profit organization Dans la Rue.

    Canada-wide, we can tell you that it was truly rewarding to give back to those who need it most and we encourage you to continue the movement and help empower the communities around you!

    If you want to know more about Nelson Mandela Day or how you can contribute, visit To learn more about Dermalogica’s joinFITE initiative, check out

  • UK Team Celebrate International Women’s Day by Supporting

    Each year, International Women’s Day is celebrated on March 8th. The first was held on 1911 and since then, thousands of events occur around the world to mark the economic, political and social achievements of women.

    In aid of this year’s  International Women’s Day on Saturday 8th March, The International Dermal Institute UK head office in Leatherhead, Surrey held a traditional afternoon tea, complete with homemade baked items and donated by creative members of the team.

    Training Specialist Beca Taylor chose to mark the occasion by creating individual gingerbread women in honor of the event theme. As part of the UK education team, we help to empower women daily with knowledge within our workshops to help them further their own independence. To support International Women’s Day I made gingerbread ‘women’ for our bake sale. The basic shape of the gingerbread women were all the same, but decorated them to represent woman globally,said Beca.

    All staff were invited to bring along a ‘gold colored’ coin as a donation, entitling them to enjoy the delicious sweet and savory treats. All proceeds were given to FITE (Financial Independence Through Entrepreneurship) to assist in their global push to help 50,000 women entrepreneurs start or grow their own businesses around the world.

    One loan of $25 from the proceeds has been made to Mary in Kenya.  Mary runs a profitable hardware store in Kitengela town and will be using this loan to kick start the payment of fees for her child who is in high school. This is her fourth loan term and she has paid her previous loans successfully using business profits. She intends to use her continued business success to pay school fees long-term, providing education and a firm foundation for her child’s future.

  • march is national women’s history month

    Jane WurwandDuring the month of March, I challenge you and invite you to share your story as a working woman whether inside or outside of the home. What messages and lessons did you get from other women in your life? What obstacles have you faced? What objectives and goals keep you up at night? What was your Mother’s deepest wish for you, and how was it expressed? What is your deepest wish for your own daughter? And, were you raised by, or are you yourself, a “Tiger Mother”?

    As you know, our company is all about education. And in an even deeper sense, our dedication to education means social change for women. As such, I am excited and proud to report that more than 400 Dermalogica stockists – including skin treatment centers, spas and salons – are hosting in-store consumer events to raise awareness and dollars for FITE (Financial Independence Through Entrepreneurship). FITE, as you know from reading our site and blog, is the new women’s initiative which will help a minimum of 25,000 women around the world start or grow a business. Consumers and companies can participate in many ways, starting with purchasing a Dermalogica product which has been tagged for the cause!

    Featured entreprenuer Sophea Chum

    But it’s not just about our campaign. So please share with us your story. We’d like to post as many of these stories as possible to our blog, in the newly-created “Comments” area. We’ll publish as many of your responses as possible. In honor of National Women’s History Month, I am committed to making this blog an interactive forum, so please – I want to hear from you!

    Meanwhile – if you’re shopping for Dermalogica, snap up a product with the FITE promotional sleeve, redeem the product code, and help a woman get her business rolling!

    And attend a FITE event near you (check the locations here) – who says a good cause can’t be fun?

  • Where are the Women in Science?

    Marie Curie was the first person ever to be awarded two Nobel prizes, and the first female to win one. That was 100 years ago.

    Where are we now? She still holds the record. No other female has multiple Nobel prizes. In fact, only 40 women in total have been awarded the Nobel Prize between 1901 and 2009. 773 males have been awarded.

    Last time I wrote about the importance of educating the girls around the world. With my background, it was evident that females were the minority in the science field. One issue that still pervades higher education is the scarcity of women in the STEM fields- science, technology, engineering and mathematics. Just before Christmas, the UK government was congratulating themselves on protecting science, while quietly ending the funding to the UK Resource Centre for Women in Science Engineering and Technology. Why the lack of progress in this particular area? There is no clear answer, but there are efforts by several organizations to improve these statistics. It is not that girls and women lack the ability to study math and science, or are incapable or being business-minded. It has more to do with the lack of confidence girls and women feel in their own abilities, an issue that may be perpetuated by the cultural ethos.

    What about boys?
    Yes males are half of the global population, but some of the major challenges in attaining proper education are unique to girls and women. Pregnancy, societal restrictions, early marriage are all issues that may prevent a girl from continuing her education. This is a centuries-old problem that requires a modern solution.
    Together, as a global society, we can make a change for the better. Invest in a girl and she will ensure a brighter future for herself and her community.

  • Girls are the Gateway to Societal Success

    Over the past decade, research has been reflecting this statement despite the lack of data on girls in the developing world. If she stays in school, remains healthy, and gains skills, she will marry later, have fewer and healthier children, and earn an income that she’ll invest back into her family (United Nations Population Fund, State of World Population 1990). Compared to her male counterparts who invest about a third of their income back into their families, she will invest 90% (Chris Fortson, “Women’s Rights Vital for Developing World,” Yale News Daily 2003). Currently there are about 600 million adolescent girls throughout the developing world. And they are the future.

    To ensure success within an environment that does not necessarily foster female progress in the business or political sector, it is important to allow these girls to gain proper education and skills that will allow her to have a bright future. The power of education really is evident in society. It gives children the confidence to visualize success in their future. It allows the mind to wonder and investigate, allowing for creativity. Higher education, be it in a trade, vocation or academia, has been proven to be a measure of success later in life.

    January is national mentoring month. I believe people, and maybe females in particular, benefit greatly from one-on-one educational interactions. We have all benefitted from a great teacher or mentor, so why not do something valuable for others? Getting involved in your community can be more rewarding than you may imagine!
    To learn more about adolescent girl education read a report here

  • mind the gap

    Jane WurwandThat’s what we say in the UK when stepping on and off the tube (train). But the gap that I really “mind” these days, in the American sense, meaning that it vexes me, is the gap dividing men and women globally in terms of gender equality.

    The World Economic Forum (WEF) Global Gender Gap Report has just been published. The news in some cases is good; some countries, like the USA and Sri Lanka, have risen in the rankings. Others, like France — quelle horreur! — have dropped.

    The report studies and analyzes 114 countries on the basis of key issues:

    • Economics (salaries, access to skilled employment)
    • Educational attainment
    • Political representation in decision-making structures
    • Health and survival

    At the top of the list: Iceland, Norway, Finland, Sweden. Great places to be a woman, providing you have a good pair of boots and a nice bulky sweater or two. Some are quick to point out that these Nordic economies are “rich” by world standards. True, but this study demonstrates that wealth is more accurately defined as equally divided assets and opportunities, not mere endowments alone.

    This all gets back to why I attended the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI), and why Dermalogica has founded FITE. There is an unmistakable correlation between gender equality and a country’s prosperity and economic viability. Countries that don’t place value upon female human capital (I won’t name names, but, oh, you know who you are) are wasting an immeasurable resource: women’s talents and skills. Some of these countries possess tremendous wealth, but it stays in the hands of a very few men. These untapped talents and skills can generate a significant competitive advantage in the world market. So, in practical terms, it’s not just bad karma: it’s bad business.

    These ideas were on my mind when I was recently interviewed on television (please look for it!), during the closing session of the CGI. As the attendees and I began to go our separate ways, lots of people asked me for a sound-byte to capture what I hope to achieve with FITE.

    What I said: I want Dermalogica to be instantly associated in the minds of consumers with putting 25,000 of the world’s women into business for themselves, much the way M.A.C. is known for championing HIV/AIDS prevention and survival.

    But here’s my new question: do we as women place limits upon ourselves, and what we are willing to achieve?

    Let’s talk.

  • saved by the bell

    Jane WurwandIt is a fact that domestic violence crosses all economic, social and cultural boundaries. Rich people do it. Poor people do it. People in-between do it, too.

    But here’s the thing: poor people have the fewest options for self-defense.

    When we say domestic violence, we are talking about battering, and all forms of physical and psychic terrorism. Women and children comprise the vast majority of those who are at the receiving-end of domestic violence.

    Women and children who have independent resources – cab fare, a bus-token, a credit card, a cell phone — may be able to get into a safe place where they can tell somebody and call for help, or simply get away. Women and children, and especially women with small children, living in poverty, have little choice but to stay. This is true even in American cities. There are urban areas of our own country where the police are notoriously slow to show — because they’re scared!

    This was the key topic during the Girls’ and Women’s breakout session during the CGI — there were 50 breakout rooms, and in our group of 12 or so people, I sat next to Jennifer Buffet (Warren’s daughter-in-law: see blog dated October 15) along with Marguerite Margolies, who is Chelsea Clinton’s mother-in-law. Both women are Dermalogica fans, as I discovered when I gave them my card!

    Mallika Dutt, from India, spoke about a public service campaign underway in her country that confronts domestic violence — President Clinton had also mentioned it during the opening plenary. It’s called “Bell Bajao” or “Ring the Bell.” If someone hears sounds coming from a neighbor’s home that suggests violence, they go to the door and ring the doorbell. This action interrupts the violence, and chances are that the perpetrator is aware of the campaign, and may stop. Check it out at — India

    Would this work in America? I’m not so sure. The fact that it is working in India is relevant, though.

    The entire discussion raises interesting and disturbing links between domestic violence, especially violence perpetrated by men against women, and poverty, and war. This unholy trinity absolutely dictates life in the developing world. This realization was one of the key “Aha!” moments we had when deciding to form FITE: to give disempowered women ways out. Physical safety, and mental security from the threat of violence, are the first steps toward creating personal, professional and economic stability.

    We’ve all seen the astonishing photographs of Bibi Aisha, an Afghani 14-year old whose nose was cut off by her husband and his brother as punishment when Aisha fled her marriage from her Taliban-fighter spouse. As a side note, Aisha’s father had delivered her into this marriage in exchange for a bride-price which paid off his debts. We’ve all heard the phrase “using women as chattel.” In case you’ve ever wondered, this is exactly what it means.

    I also just read that according to Margot Wallstrom, the UN’s special representative on sexual violence, the “Democratic Republic” (I cannot resist putting those words in bitter quotation-marks) of Congo is the rape-capital of the world. For a taste of brutality more barbaric than most of us can easily imagine, just Google “Congo rape” or words to that effect, and have a read.

    Sexual violence, which often takes the form of domestic violence within families, is epidemic worldwide. It’s also happening right down the street from you and me. Just listen. And if you hear something, ring the bell (or at least call 911).