Glossy: Ambition, Beauty, and the Inside Story of Emily Weiss's Glossier (Hardcover)
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INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER • Financial Times Best Book of the Year
The “compulsively readable narrative of beauty, business, privilege, and mogul-dom” (The New York Times) that reveals—for the first time—exactly wat happened at Glossier, one of America’s hottest and most consequential startups, and dives deep into the enigmatic, visionary woman responsible for it all.
Called “one of the most disruptive brands in beauty” by Forbes, Glossier revolutionized the beauty industry with its sophisticated branding and unique approach to influencer marketing, almost instantly making the company a juggernaut with rabid fans. It also taught a generation of business leaders how to talk to Millennial and Gen Z customers and build a cult following online.
At the center of the story lies Emily Weiss, the elusive former Teen Vogue “superintern” on the reality show The Hills turned Into the Gloss beauty blogger who had the vision, guts, and searing ambition needed to launch Glossier. She cannily turned every experience, every meeting into an opportunity to fuel her own personal success. Together with her expensive, signature style and singular vision for the future of consumerism, she could not be stopped. Just how did a girl from suburban Connecticut with no real job experience work her way into the bathrooms and boudoirs of the most influential names in the world and build that access into a 1.9-billion-dollar business? Is she solely responsible for its success? And why, eight years later, at the height of Glossier mania, did she step down?
In Glossy, journalist and author Marisa Meltzer combines in-depth interviews with former Glossier employees, investors, and Weiss herself to bring you inside the walls of this fascinating and secretive company. From fundraising to product launches and unconventional hiring practices, Meltzer exposes the inner workings of Glossier’s culture, culminating in the story of Weiss herself. The Devil Wears Prada for the Bad Blood generation, Glossy is not just a gripping portrait of one of the most important business leaders of her generation, but also a chronicle of an era.
About the Author
Marisa Meltzer is a journalist based in New York who for over a decade has covered beauty, fashion, wellness, and celebrity industries for top national publications such as The New York Times, The New Yorker, The Guardian, The Wall Street Journal, Vogue, and Vanity Fair. The author of three previous books, This Is Big, How Sassy Changed My Life, and Girl Power, she lives in Manhattan.
"Meltzer is such a smart skeptic of Glossier’s myth and such a sharp analyst of the ways in which the brand is a barometer of broader trends."
“An authoritative guide to Glossier’s industry context and an astute analyst of the brand’s appeal.”
"Meltzer emphasizes the entrepreneurial savvy of the brand’s founder, Emily Weiss, who blogged in the mornings before her internship at Vogue and eventually secured funding from the same venture capital firm as Apple and Google, turning Glossier into the rare billion-dollar company helmed by a woman."
—New York Times, 33 Nonfiction Books to Read This Fall
"The juicy (but fair) deep dive that the Glossier empire deserves."
"This book is a nonfiction beauty lover's dream: concise, well-researched, thoughtful, and juicy reporting on Glossier and its elusive founder, Emily Weiss. It is equal parts frothy and factual, and it's a glimpse behind the curtain of not just one company but the beauty industry as a whole."
–Marie Claire, Best Books of 2023
“It’s an extremely balanced (yet delightfully juicy) look at the booming beauty business, the cutthroat startup space, and the compelling era of the Girlboss."
“We urge every beauty lover to read Glossy by Marisa Meltzer. It reveals an insider’s view of Glossier—aka, the beauty brand that transformed the world.”
—New York Post
"Meltzer vividly reconstructs how Weiss’s ambition propelled Glossier’s birth and rise."
"Equal parts dishy, informative, and nostalgic, I found myself finishing Meltzer’s book in just a few days."
—Fortune, Best Books of 2023
“Combining in-depth interviews with former Glossier employees, investors and Weiss herself, Meltzer’s exposé is for anyone with a thirst for Devil Wears Prada style peeks into the inner machinations of glamorous industries like beauty.”
"A probing, inside baseball-esque examination of the millennial pink makeup and skincare giant...[Meltzer] draws a compelling portrait of the company's enigmatic and somewhat cagey founder."
"An inside look at what it took to build what was the millennial brand of the moment, and for millennials like us…well, we couldn’t get enough."
"A detailed, thorough, and balanced portrait of the woman behind the brand...delivers on the juicy, illuminating details readers are surely expecting."
"A forensic cross-examination of an era-defining company and how it embodied a moment in wider culture...a fascinating portrait of one of the most prolific female CEOs of the last decade."
"Essential reading for anyone interested in the behind-the-scenes mechanics of the beauty business. It reads like a true crime thriller for industry obsessives."
—Jessica Defino, The Unpublishable
“Journalist Marisa Meltzer chronicles the rise of Glossier and provides a rare peek at its founder."
—Katie Couric Media
“A fascinating exposé on the inner workings of the billion-dollar beauty brand Glossier and its notorious founder, Emily Weiss.”
"I could not put this book down... It’s a dishy (albeit well-reported) examination of the ‘girl boss era’ and is a compulsively readable book."
"A meticulous feat of beauty reporting."
"Glossy tells a great business story... but it’s also the story of a captivating, yet fairly unknowable, person."
"This is the rare business book that’s actually fun to read."
—Vulture, 24 Books We Can't Wait to Read This Fall
"[A] delicious character portrait of Glossier visionary Emily Weiss... The book bursts with expansive interviews, from ex-Glossier employees, fashion visionaries, and Weiss herself."
—Bustle, 35 Best New Books of Fall 2023
"A piquant, deeply reported history of the brand."
"A bombshell exposé and study of corporate feminism that reveals for the first time what exactly has gone down at Glossier under the leadership of Emily Weiss."
—The Millions, Most Anticipated 2023
"Meltzer's reporting is fantastic... I devoured this."
—Grace Atwood, The Stripe
“A striking attempt to capture the founder as a human in all her complexity, operating within a system that leaves little room for failure and is quick to criticize.”
—Emily Singer, Chips + Dips Substack
"Multi-tasks as highly readable brand memoir, founder manual and 21st century history of the business of beauty."
—Navaz Batliwalla, Disneyrollergirl
“Delivering behind-the-scenes intel… a beauty and fashion tell-all.”
"Lean-in–style feminists and fashionistas alike will revel in the rise of this woman-led business."
"Meltzer's book is replete with the refreshing sparkle you'd expect to find in one of Glossier's moisturizers. This is the portrait of a female CEO we've been sorely lacking."
—Tina Brown, New York Times bestselling author of The Palace Papers
"Marisa Meltzer knows the Glossier story better than any other journalist. This lively corporate tale illuminates the rise of a beauty business juggernaut and helps us understand an entire era—when a bit of hype and chutzpah could turn a simple idea into a billion-dollar business."
—Reeves Wiedeman, author of Billion Dollar Loser
"Marisa Meltzer crafts the delicious story of Glossier's extraordinary rise with the same rapid pace as its explosive growth—both as a company and a cultural force. Once you start this book, you will not be able to stop."
—Amy Odell, New York Times bestselling author of Anna
“A deeply reported, cinematic tale about an ambitious woman who navigated a treacherous business world to build a billion-dollar beauty empire. Marisa Meltzer has written this generation’s Devil Wears Prada—only it’s all true.”
—Jessica Pressler, journalist and author of the adapted features "How Anna Delvey Tricked New York's Party People" and "The Hustlers at Scores" (New York Magazine)
"I was always thirsty for an insidery exegesis of the ever-elusive Emily Weiss and her proverbially 'cool-girl' Glossier empire. What a treat that this vivid, first-of-its-kind account now actually exists. Meltzer is a sharp, intimate narrator who has penned a devourable story of ambition, beauty, gender, and capitalism—told with all the juiciness and sparkling clarity of (dare I say it) the titular brand's Balm Dot Com."
—Amanda Montell, bestselling author of Cultish