Sarah Breedlove (Octavia Spencer) is barely making enough to survive as a washer woman, taking in laundry for other people at the turn of the century. When her abusive husband leaves her, Sarah is a broken woman, with her hair falling out. She meets Addie (Carmen Ejogo), who has come up with a miracle cream that grows hair back. As her hair grows, her confidence grows, and soon Sarah asks Addie if she can work for her as a saleswoman. Addie refuses, because her saleswoman are young and beautiful. She tells Sarah to keep doing her laundry, as they agreed.
Sarah, now married to C.J. Walker (Blair Underwood), formulates her own cream and begins a successful business as Madam C.J. Walker, along with her daughter Lelia (Tiffany Haddish). As a black woman, she has great success and opens a salon, but her dreams are bigger than that. She wants to open a factory to make a line of beauty products. However, getting investors, who are all male, to believe in her, is an obstacle she's determined to overcome.Canadian Connection: Filmed in Ontario.;