Women working in cosmetics industry treated more equally than most

By Deanna Utroske

- Last updated on GMT

Women working in cosmetics industry treated more equally than most
New data from job review site fairygodboss.com shows well over half of women working in the beauty business self-report being treated equitably in regard to gender, though when it comes to job satisfaction cosmetics scored near the bottom.

For several industries the findings were not good news at all. Few women in aerospace, pharma, automotive, and real estate, for instance, reported being treated fairly and equally by their employers.  

In her Forbes coverage of the fairygodboss data, Clare O'Connor closed with the aside that “perhaps unsurprisingly, traditionally female-dominated sectors came out on top in this [equality]report. At number one was public relations…[while] cosmetics placed second.”

Women working

The career review site got its start in March of last year, thanks to Romy Newman and Georgene Huang—both previously Dow Jones executives. The site serves as a resource where women can find out about other women’s honest experiences at various companies.

“To improve the workplace by creating transparency…[fairygodboss] crowd-sources hard-to-ask and hard-to-find information about employers’ benefits and culture for women, by women,”​ explains the site’s newly released report on equity and job satisfaction.

Numbers of note

The site complied close to 5,000 reviews across 30 industries in its report. Asked, yes or no, “Do you think men and women are treated fairly and equally at your employer?” ​71% of women working in the cosmetics industry said, “yes.”

“The leadership is predominantly women; they understand very well women's needs and [are] also less likely to hold stereotypes against women,” ​a project manager with Estée Lauder told the site.

When asked, “How would you rate your overall experience at your employer on a scale of 1-5? (where 5 = highest),” women respondents rated the cosmetics industry 27th, ahead of only aerospace, transportation, and pharmacies & drug stores. The average reply for women in the beauty business was between a 3 and a 3.5.

fairygodboss.com also asked, “Would you recommend your employer to other women?” ​ Just under 50% of women in cosmetics said “yes,” ​and nearly 25% said “no.” ​The remaining percentage would “maybe” ​recommend their cosmetics company employer to other women.

Bigger picture

Some other findings from the survey are relevant as well. On the list ranking industries according to employees satisfaction, retail (where a fair number of beauty and personal care professionals get started) ranked 23rd of 30. Consumer Packaged Goods, however, came in 15th. And, consulting and public relations (both industries that support the beauty business) are 1st and 2nd respectively. 

Who’s who in leadership and management figures here as well. Among the key factors that determine how satisfied women are with their companies, regardless of industry, is gender balance in management, reports fairygodboss.

When management is not diverse, only 33% of women respondents reported being satisfied. By contrast, when management is gender diverse, that figure jumps to 80%.

The site is looking next at how salaries compare by gender, a database that may impact how gender equality is gauged altogether.

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