Sally Hansen was an entrepreneurial woman ahead of her generation. Hansen moved to Hollywood in 1922 to pursue an acting career. She was quite popular in movies such as Beverly Smiles and Peggy Ann. She opened her own dance studio, but what she really wanted was to sell beauty products so that everyday women would feel beautiful.
Hansen began by writing advice and beauty tip columns for the Los Angeles Times newspaper. In 1940, Hansen took over her parents cosmetic firm and renamed it House of Hollywood. She owned the company independent of her husband, something which was rare at the time. Hansen returned to New York to open her cosmetic brand, starting with Hard as Nails, a nail polish designed to make growing longer nails easier.
Hansen sold her company in 1962 to Coty, Inc. for $11 million. Hansen passed away in 1963.