Founder of Mary Kay Cosmetics, no-one quite knows the exact birthdate of Mary Kay Wagner Ash, although it is said to be around 1916. Her parents were Lula and Edward Wagner and she had three older siblings. Because her father grew ill when she was small, Kay took on many household responsibilities so that her mother could work. She did well in school but there was no money in the family to send her to college and at 17 she got married and went on to have three children but eventually divorced. When her marriage ended she got a sales job, through which she started developing her own theory n marketing and sales and offering sales incentives to customers and the sales force. She was a good worker but being a woman meant she wasn’t given the same opportunities as men. In another job she held demo “parties” to sell company products mainly to homemakers. She finally got to study Medicine at Houston University but soon quit to return to her work in sales.