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On Friday, Sara Blakely cut the ribbon to debut her new Spanx store at the King of Prussia mall, marking her company's recent embarkment into standalone retail. But for the 41-year-old entrepreneur—named by Forbes magazine as the youngest female self-made billionaire—the rode to success was paved with humiliation.
In an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer, Blakely laughs about her time spent at "rock bottom": Before she was squeezing herself into her wildly successful line of shapewear, the law school dropout was fighting for air inside mascot costumes at Disney World.
A stint in fax machine sales necessitated attire a little less plush— notedly, cream pants from Arden B, that despite Blakely's petite size-two frame, weren't doing her any favors ("Cellulite does not discriminate," she says). She smoothed things out by cutting the feet off some pantyhose, and the rest is history.
· Spanx founder's look-good feel-good story [Philly.com]
· Spanx [Official Site]