Years ago, the standard of beauty used to be defined by a select few editorial authorities and only a handful of beauty brands. We realized that the perception of what was considered beautiful was not only narrow, but unrealistic and undoubtedly misrepresentative of the fabric of humanity.
Ten years ago, IPSY set out to change that by putting power back in the hands of people. We built a beauty subscription company that provides access to amazing brands and products, but ultimately is a space for authentic self-expression; a place where all are welcome, seen, and heard. Along our journey we’ve had some wins and some misses—but we’ve never wavered from our vision.
Fast forward to today, and we’ve expanded beyond just IPSY. We’ve developed new brands like Refreshments, Item Beauty, and Complex Culture—making high quality, clean, sustainable products accessible to all. We’ve welcomed BoxyCharm, a brand that has always had inclusion and diversity at the core of their DNA, into our family. And to house all of these brands, we launched BFA (Beauty for All) Industries, a beauty innovation powerhouse with one centralized mission of inspiring self-expression.
So how does a company like ours begin to change the world? It starts with identifying areas where we believe we can make the biggest difference and rallying our entire company behind them. To that end, we’ve officially launched BFA Impact, a company-wide movement to inspire self-expression and celebrate the unique beauty of people and the planet through the brands, products, and communities we support. Under BFA Impact we’ve selected two focal points, self-expression and sustainability, and here is how we plan to activate them:
SELF-EXPRESSION: AMPLIFYING AND INVESTING IN FOCUS COMMUNITIES
The beauty industry has not always provided access or the tools needed for everyone to authentically express themselves, so we want to create a space that welcomes and celebrates the unique beauty of every individual. Since certain communities aren’t equitably represented in beauty, we are starting by amplifying and investing in Black, Latinx, and LGBTQ+ communities and brands. The commitments we are focused on over the next three years include:
- INCREASING BRAND EQUITY: Identifying, investing in, and elevating brands from our focus communities, with the goal of amplifying 50 brands over the next three years. We’ve already committed to investing over $17M across 20+ Black-owned brands between IPSY and BoxyCharm in 2021 alone. And we’re just getting started.
- EXPANDING COMMUNITY REPRESENTATION: Amplifying the voices and faces of our focus communities by featuring diverse creators, founders, fans, and ambassadors to better reflect the uniqueness of our society and to ensure our community is inclusive and welcoming to all.
- EMPLOYEE EMBODIMENT: Improving our hiring and career development practices to increase the employment and retention of employees from our focus communities and continuing to build upon and grow our female leadership.
SUSTAINABILITY: TRANSPARENCY AND INNOVATION FOR LONG-TERM IMPACT
The U.S. hasn’t always been a leader in setting beauty standards, both from an ingredient regulation and packaging sustainability standpoint, but things are changing. As one of the leading beauty companies, delivering millions of beauty products every month, we have a responsibility to innovate new ways of bringing better beauty products to consumers and arming them with the information to make better decisions. Over the next 10 years our goal is to eliminate 100% of our virgin plastic waste and actively reverse the effects of plastic pollution. This will take time, ingenuity, and pure grit, but it’s a mountain we’re ready to climb. In the short-term our initial focus over the next three years includes:
- CLEAN BEAUTY TRANSPARENCY: Educating our community about clean beauty, the risks related to certain ingredients, and providing accessibility to better beauty options throughout our portfolio. We just launched The BFA Clean Standard and The Out List™, an assurance to our members that the products they receive from us will be formulated to reduce health risks related to certain ingredients. During 2022 we will eliminate any products that do not meet The Out List requirements and will begin highlighting products that meet The BFA Clean Standard as early as April 2021. Refreshments is already the first brand in our portfolio to completely abide by The BFA Clean Standard.
- BEAUTY PACKAGING INNOVATION: Reducing the use of virgin plastic by 50% in our BFA-owned brands and beginning to influence our brand partners’ packaging material choices. From the outset, Refreshments launched with at least 30% of every product component made from post-consumer recycled plastic, but this just scratches the surface of what’s in store for us.
- LONG TERM IMPACT: Building the roadmap to achieve our bold 10-year plastic elimination goal and appointing a packaging innovation team to develop new environmentally friendly packaging materials. Continuing to integrate strong environmental, social and governance practices into our business operations.
We believe that beauty can only be democratized when it becomes accessible. Accessibility happens through education, opportunity, and availability. We are committed to making more progress in these areas for the sake of our community, but also for the sake of the beauty industry at large. Real change happens together.
We look forward to sharing more updates as we march towards these goals. I’m honored and excited at ensuring the success of these commitments now and over the coming years ahead.
- Marcelo Camberos