Beauty companies spend their days creating products to make women look and feel more beautiful (which we love!), but what do they do for the greater good? We took a closer look, and found the world of beauty is more than skin deep. These 10 brands are just a few of the many going above and beyond to make a difference.
Who They Give Back To: Room to Read
How They Do It: In 2014, Japanese-inspired skin-care brand TATCHA began a partnership with Room to Read, an organization committed to changing the world through educating children. The nonprofit’s Girls’ Education program supports girls in nine countries across Africa and Asia. To date, 8.8 million children have benefitted. “My own heart tells me the best way to help girls become beautiful is by giving them an opportunity to develop their minds,” says Victoria Tsai, founder of TATCHA. “With every full-size skin-care purchase, you help fund one day of school for an incredible girl.”
Who They Give Back To: FITE (Financial Independence Through Entrepreneurship), among other organizations
How They Do It: The Dermalogica Foundation’s FITE organization raises funds to give girls the education, mentorship and job-skill programs they need to succeed as entrepreneurs and increase their earning potential. It invests in grassroots initiatives to help women become leaders in their communities, which the Foundation believes is one of the most effective ways to fight poverty and foster economic growth. “Dermalogica’s success is overwhelmingly due to the huge percentage of women entrepreneurs who support us,” says Jane Wurwand, founder of Dermalogica and FITE. To date, the program has helped fund more than 50,000 loans for women to start or grow a business throughout the U.S. and 68 other countries.
Who They Give Back To: Laura Mercier Ovarian Cancer Fund
How They Do It: Laura Mercier launched the Ovarian Cancer Fund in 2012 with a mission to not only raise awareness but fund research and educational efforts that support women with the disease, which remains the leading cause of death among gynecological cancers in the U.S. The brand features a special line of products created for the campaign, in which 100 percent of the profits are regularly donated to the Fund. “Laura Mercier and I have both been personally and profoundly affected by ovarian cancer through the experiences of loved ones, and we were stunned to learn the terrible truth that most newly diagnosed women already have an advanced form of the disease because diagnostic tools are limited,” says Claudia Poccia, president and CEO of Laura Mercier Cosmetics’ parent company, Gurwitch Products. In honor of Ovarian Cancer Month (September), the brand released a limited-edition Lip Glace in Peach Hope ($25), which will also contribute profits to the cause.
The Brand: LUSH
Who They Give Back To: Several organizations through their Charitable Givings’ initiative
How They Do It: “We like to look after those who look after others, and are committed to supporting small, grassroots charities and projects working on behalf of the environment and conservation, animal protection, and for human rights,” says Mark Wolverton, North American president and CEO for LUSH. All of the proceeds from the brand’s Charity Pot hand and body lotion ($6-$23) go to grassroots groups, many of which are handpicked by LUSH team members. “Charity Pot is the main source of charitable funds but we also raise additional money through limited-edition charity products,” says Wolverton. “We strive to be who we say we are and part of that is giving back to causes that we believe in.”
Who They Give Back To: 1% For the Planet, among other organizations
How They Do It: Since 2012, Caudalie has contributed 1 percent of its annual worldwide sales to the “1% For the Planet” movement, which funds ecological associations. Throughout the past 10 years, more than $100 million have been distributed to support hundreds of projects focusing on reforestation, preservation of biodiversity and ecosystems, protection of fauna and flora and development of sustainable agriculture. Caudalie founders Mathilde and Bertrand Thomas wanted to take action and go further in their commitments. “Caudalie is one of those independent family companies that contribute to a smart growth model,” they say. “We are aware that to try to be environmentally-friendly is a continuous learning curve.”
Who They Give Back To: amfAR (The Foundation for AIDS Research), among other organizations
How They Do It: Each year, Kiehl’s hosts the “LifeRide for amfAR” event, a multiday, multistop motorcycle ride from Wisconsin to New York, to raise awareness for amfAR, a global nonprofit dedicated to AIDS research and HIV prevention. To further support the cause, Kiehl’s has created a limited-edition, jumbo-size version of their cult favorite Ultimate Strength Hand Salve ($28.50), adorned with a red cap in honor of amfAR. The total net profits from the sale of the product, up to $25,000, will benefit the organization. “From our inception, it has been Kiehl’s mission to always give back to the communities in which we do business,” says Chris Salgardo, president of Kiehl’s USA. “I’m especially proud that since 2010, we’ve raised more than $1 million, which has fostered six cure-related research grants.”
Who They Give Back To: EarthEcho International, among other organizations
How They Do It: H2O Plus partners with EarthEcho International, a nonprofit organization founded in 2000 with the mission to empower youth to take action that restores and protects our water planet. H2O Plus created a limited-edition, ocean-inspired shower gel ($10) to help raise funds in support of the cause, and is donating 10 percent of their net sales from the product to EarthEcho International.
Who They Give Back To: Prevention of Mother-to-Child Transmission of HIV/AIDS (PMTCT) programs, among other organizations
How They Do It: Maternity and baby skin-care line Noodle & Boo is raising awareness and funds through their Circle of Love Campaign for PMTCT programs in Africa. All of the profits from the sale of the brand’s Believe Honey Bar ($10) and “Our World” Tee ($20) are being donated to the campaign. “Mother-to-child transmission of the HIV virus is a serious problem plaguing mothers and newborn babies in Africa,” says Christine Burger, founder of Noodle & Boo. “We want to use our platform to bring awareness that every newborn of an HIV-positive mother can be protected from the virus. Antiretroviral treatment is real and works.”
Who They Give Back To: Several worldwide and local charities that support causes for human rights, among other issues
How They Do It: Since 2004, The Body Shop Foundation has raised global awareness for domestic violence, donating more than $7 million to local partners who fund the prevention, support and protection of abused women and children. One of the campaign’s most notable successes is an organized street march and petition in Seoul, Korea, which resulted in an increase in government spending for domestic violence shelters and educational programs for police. “With every purchase of The Body Shop Dragon Fruit Lip Butter ($6), 100 percent of the profits go to The Body Shop Foundation to allow us to fund global issues that so desperately need our help,” says Lisa Jackson, CEO of the Foundation.
Who They Give Back To: City of Hope and other organizations through their Pravana Cares initiative
How They Do It: PRAVANA’s NEVO collection, the brand’s first eco-conscious hair-care line, was created with a sole mission in mind. “What if personal care went beyond creating beauty and extended to doing something meaningful for our planet and its people,” asks Steven Goddard, president of PRAVANA. “You may call this a dream. I call it NEVO.” According to the brand, the collection’s packaging is 100 percent biodegradable and begins to break down in a landfill in just 250 days. In addition to aiding environmental concerns, PRAVANA is also donating 5 percent of NEVO’s sales to City of Hope, a research and treatment center for cancer, diabetes and other life-threatening diseases.
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