Ulta Beauty, the nation’s largest beauty retailer, looks to double the number of Black-owned brands in its assortment by the end of 2021, and commit $25 million to support several diversity and inclusion efforts, including brand amplification and support, and equitable customer and store associate experiences. Approximately $20 million will be allocated to media investments across endemic and multi-cultural platforms to create more personal connections with LatinX, Black and other communities, more than doubling the spend of the last three years. And, more than $4 million will be dedicated to marketing support of Black-owned brands within the company’s assortment to fuel brand awareness and sustain growth. Black-owned brands sold by teh retailer include UOMA Beauty, Juvia’s Place, Beauty Bakerie, PATTERN, Kreyol Essence, Melanin and Flora Curl–and more.

“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,” said Mary Dillon, CEO, Ulta Beauty “We are deeply committed to leading purposefully with and for underrepresented voices across retail and beauty on our D&I journey.”

Tracee Ellis Ross
Tracee Ellis Ross

Also, the company announced Tracee Ellis Ross, CEO and founder, Pattern Beauty, as the company’s Diversity and Inclusion Advisor, a formalized role to provide counsel, inspiration and drive accountability. In her role as Diversity and Inclusion Advisor, Tracee, a beauty entrepreneur, activist and actor, will provide counsel and insight, and drive accountability to Ulta Beauty with a specific focus on BIPOC brand development, diverse leadership development and supplier diversity. She will join internal Executive D&I Council Summits quarterly.

To reinforce inclusivity and address unconscious bias in-store for customers and store associates, Ulta will begin implementing quarterly, in-store training for all store and salon associates beginning in March. These mandatory trainings account for a $2 million investment and are additional to Ulta Beauty’s existing store and salon trainings. Building upon its 2020 training course, Race Matters Leadership Training, the company will implement a mandatory 2.0 version across field, distribution center and corporate associates in 2021. Among its many additional efforts is establishing a Diverse Leaders Program to empower more than 30, high-potential associates as future company leaders with CEO and executive mentorship.

Today, the company launched a video to support it MUSE campaign [Magnify, Uplift, Support, Empower] a platform to celebrate, honor, and amplify Black voices in beauty. The video features Black beauty brand executives including Nancy Twine of Briogeo, Lisa Price of Carol’s Daughter, Cara Sabin of Sundial Brands and Julee Wilson of Cosmopolitan. The MUSE content will go live on Ulta Beauty’s social channels and the company website today with a complementary content series profiling the Black beauty leaders featured within the anthem video, Ode to Beauty.