10 Things You Didn’t Know About Sara Blakely

When it comes to successful entrepreneurs, Sara Blakely stands out as a true inspiration. As the founder of Spanx, a multi-million dollar shapewear company, she has not only revolutionized the fashion industry but has also become a shining example for aspiring businesswomen. While many may be familiar with her entrepreneurial journey, there are several lesser-known facts about Sara Blakely that are worth exploring. Here are 10 things you didn’t know about the remarkable woman behind Spanx.

1. She Started Spanx with Just $5,000

Contrary to popular belief, Sara Blakely didn’t have a vast amount of capital when she launched Spanx. In fact, she started her company with just $5,000 in savings. Blakely invested her own money in developing a prototype and purchasing the necessary patents, underscoring her determination to turn her vision into a reality. Her incredible success is a testament to the power of resourcefulness and perseverance.

Blakely’s unwavering belief in her product pushed her to cold-call and personally visit numerous department stores to pitch Spanx. This hands-on approach eventually paid off, as Spanx products quickly gained popularity and became a staple in women’s wardrobes worldwide.

2. She Failed the LSAT

One surprising fact about Sara Blakely is that she initially aspired to become a lawyer. However, despite her impressive academic record, she failed the Law School Admission Test (LSAT) twice. Instead of giving up, she took this setback as an opportunity to reassess her goals and pursue a different path. Blakely’s resilience and ability to pivot ultimately led her to create Spanx and achieve immense success in the business world.

This experience also motivated Blakely to encourage others not to fear failure. She believes that failures are valuable lessons and stepping stones towards success, as they shape one’s character and foster personal growth. Blakely’s journey serves as a reminder that failure is not a roadblock but an integral part of the entrepreneurial journey.

3. She is a Philanthropist

In addition to her business ventures, Sara Blakely is actively involved in philanthropy. She established the Sara Blakely Foundation in 2006, with a mission to support women through education and entrepreneurship. The foundation provides financial assistance, business training, and mentorship opportunities to empower women and help them realize their potential.

Blakely’s focus on female empowerment extends beyond her foundation. She has also participated in various initiatives and collaborated with organizations to uplift and support women. Through her philanthropic efforts, Blakely continues to make a positive impact on women’s lives, inspiring them to pursue their dreams and overcome obstacles.

4. She Became the Youngest Female Self-Made Billionaire

In 2012, Sara Blakely made history when she became the youngest self-made female billionaire at the age of 41. Spanx’s immense success led to Blakely’s inclusion in Forbes’ prestigious list of billionaires. This noteworthy achievement not only recognized her entrepreneurial accomplishments but also shattered gender stereotypes by showcasing a woman’s ability to excel in business.

Blakely’s meteoric rise to billionaire status exemplifies her tenacity, innovation, and unwavering belief in her product. Her determination and entrepreneurial spirit continue to inspire generations of women to pursue their ambitions and break through barriers.

5. She Overcame Rejection and Skepticism

The path to success is rarely smooth, and Sara Blakely faced her fair share of rejection and skepticism along the way. When she first introduced her concept of shapewear to manufacturers, they refused to take her seriously. Many believed that women would never embrace such a product. However, Blakely remained undeterred.

She eventually found a hosiery mill willing to produce her innovative design, and once Spanx hit the market, its popularity skyrocketed. Blakely’s perseverance in the face of doubt and rejection highlights the importance of believing in oneself, standing firm in one’s convictions, and pursuing one’s passion despite the odds.

6. She Has an Unconventional Approach to Marketing

Blakely’s creative marketing tactics have played a pivotal role in the success of Spanx. At the beginning of her entrepreneurial journey, she personally distributed sample products to celebrities, gaining their endorsement and generating significant brand visibility. Blakely’s clever approach resulted in Spanx being featured on major talk shows and in popular publications, effectively launching it into the mainstream market.

Additionally, Blakely’s commitment to customer satisfaction extends beyond traditional advertising. She has built a strong and loyal customer base through word-of-mouth marketing, ensuring that every woman who wears Spanx feels confident and comfortable. By prioritizing customer needs and relying on unconventional marketing strategies, Blakely has cemented Spanx’s position as a leading brand in the fashion industry.

7. She Values Work-Life Balance

Despite her remarkable success, Sara Blakely places great importance on maintaining a healthy work-life balance. As a mother of four, she actively strives to create a harmonious blend between her personal and professional life. Blakely firmly believes that achieving balance is essential for overall well-being and success.

Blakely’s dedication to work-life balance serves as a reminder that success isn’t solely defined by professional achievements but also by the quality of one’s personal life. Through prioritizing family and personal fulfillment, she sets an example for aspiring entrepreneurs to lead balanced lives while pursuing their ambitions.

8. She is a Pioneer for Female Entrepreneurs

Sara Blakely’s entrepreneurial journey has paved the way for numerous female entrepreneurs aspiring to make their mark in the business world. As a self-made billionaire and founder of a global brand, she has shattered glass ceilings and become an inspiration for women around the world.

Blakely goes beyond empowering others by actively mentoring and providing guidance to aspiring female entrepreneurs. Through her continued support and advocacy, she seeks to break down barriers and create a more inclusive business landscape for the next generation of women.

9. She Attributes Her Success to Visualization

One of the keys to Sara Blakely’s success lies in her unwavering belief in visualization. From the outset, she repeatedly visualized her product on store shelves, believed in its potential, and maintained a positive mindset. This practice allowed her to remain focused on her goals, overcome challenges, and persistently pursue her vision.

Blakely firmly believes that visualization plays a crucial role in achieving success, urging others to tap into the power of positive thinking and envisioning their desired outcomes. By harnessing the law of attraction, Blakely continues to manifest her dreams and inspire others to do the same.

10. She Encourages Women to Embrace their Failures

A remarkable aspect of Sara Blakely’s journey is her commitment to encouraging women to embrace their failures as stepping stones towards success. Blakely strongly believes that failures provide invaluable opportunities for growth and character development.

Through sharing her own experiences of failure and the lessons she learned along the way, she actively works to remove the stigma associated with setbacks. Blakely’s resilience and willingness to embrace failure fuels her entrepreneurial drive and serves as an inspiration for budding female entrepreneurs worldwide.

Sara Blakely’s journey is an embodiment of determination, resilience, and belief in oneself. From her humble beginnings to becoming a self-made billionaire, she has inspired countless individuals to break barriers, pursue their passions, and redefine success. Her unwavering commitment to empower women and embrace failure reminds us all that achieving greatness is within our reach.

Learn more about Sara Blakely and her journey by visiting:

Forbes Profile of Sara Blakely
Official Spanx Website