Update: Following Ulta Beauty's commitment last year to increase the number of Black-owned brands sold in stores, the retailer is doubling down on its DE&I efforts for 2022. In addition to continuing its pledge to stock shelves with 15 percent Black-owned beauty brands, Ulta will also invest $50 million into everything from marketing support for Black-owned-and-led brands, an accelerator program for up-and-coming companies, and in-store training for sales associates.
"After formally working together for a year, I'm hopeful that Ulta Beauty's commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion has been a catalyst for other organizations to examine how they plan for and create foundational change," Tracee Ellis Ross — actor, founder of Pattern Beauty, and the retailer's DE&I advisor — says in a press release. "The Ulta Beauty team brings passion and accountability to this necessary work and I am proudly committed to supporting this team."
Original post: Ulta Beauty is committed to making sure its shelves are even more diversified this year. On Feb. 2, the brand announced that it will be investing $25 million into amplifying underrepresented voices and Black-owned brands in 2021.
In a release, the retailer laid out a plan to allocate $20 million to "media investments" across multicultural platforms "to create more personal connections with Latinx, Black, and other communities." The brand also has plans to double the amount of Black-owned products that are being sold in its stores while dedicating $4 million to support the marketing efforts behind said brands. Pattern Beauty, Juvia's Place, Uoma Beauty, and Beauty Bakerie are among the brands that are already sold in stores, while Mented Cosmetics, Keys Soulcare, and Blackgirl Sunscreen will make their debut in locations nationwide this month.
"As the country's beauty retail leader, we believe we have the power to shape how the world sees beauty and as such, we have a responsibility to inspire positive change and drive greater diversity, inclusivity and equity," Mary Dillon, the company's CEO, said in a release. "We are deeply committed to leading purposefully with and for underrepresented voices across retail and beauty on our D&I journey."
Additionally, Ulta announced that Pattern Beauty founder Tracee Ellis Ross will serve as the company's diversity and inclusion adviser to "provide counsel" and keep the company accountable. "I look forward to formalizing an already existing dialogue and partnership around diversity and inclusion with Mary Dillon and the Ulta Beauty team," Ross said. "This work requires commitment and accountability from Ulta Beauty to ensure measurable goals are achieved. I am hopeful and optimistic our work together will create foundational change."
All of these efforts are a part of Ulta's MUSE platform to "magnify, uplift, support, and empower" Black voices in the beauty industry. The faces of the MUSE campaign include industry all-stars like SheaMoisture CEO Cara Sabin, Briogeo's Nancy Twine, and Melanin Haircare's Whitney White.