Last Updated:

3/19/21 4:21 PM

overall rating:

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Ulta Beauty

Internal Representation & Support
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74%

Public Commitment
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51%

External Communication
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73%

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To evaluate this pillar, we take into consideration a range of factors, including but not limited to:

- Employee representation

- Diversity, equity, & inclusion (DEI)

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We weigh a company’s degree of public commitment primarily on their monetary contributions to DEI matters or organizations fighting racial injustice.

Forms of monetary support we look for:

One-off donations
Recurring donations
Grant initiatives
Employee donation matching

 

Highlights

Ulta's new MUSE project aims to magnify, uplift, support, and empower Black beauty influencers, business-owners, and activists focused on diversifying the beauty industry. Their Instagram continues to feature many of the people involved in this project. Ulta has also specifically pledged $4m to marketing for the growing number of Black-owned businesses they've partnered with in the past year, as well as $20m for investing and working with more marginalized communities of color.

Lowlights

In August 2019, Ulta responded to multiple allegations of racial profiling made by both customers and employees. Though Ulta has improved its approach to diversifying their company and uplifting Black-owned businesses/community members since then, these allegations were widely publicized and fairly recent. Ulta still lacks full transparency of their workforce demographics despite doing the #PullUporShutUp challenge (by UOMA Beauty/Sharon Chuter) on Instagram. Their monetary donations are still somewhat self-serving despite featuring more Black-owned brands (ie. investments towards marketing, employment etc).

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We scour the company’s website and official social media channels to determine what message they are sending around racial injustice, how they are communicating it, and whether their communications are perceived as genuine or performative.

Public statement: We verify that companies have made a formal statement regarding racial injustice.

Social media: We consider how a company uses their platform(s) beyond performative allyship.

Representation: For companies that have the opportunity to showcase diversity in their feed, we consider whether they have adequate Black representation and BIPOC representation across their models. 

Looking for an equitable brand as a replacement? Click here to see our directory! 

Deep Dive

I. Internal Representation & Support:

Board of Directors:

> 15% Black, 16% - 20% BIPOC, > 50% Women

Executive Leadership:

12% - 13% Black, 11% - 15% BIPOC, 46% - 50% Women

> 40% BIPOC, > 50% Women

Workforce:

An appointed DEI senior leader and/or a dedicated DEI organization

DEI Support:

II. Public Commitment

Ulta Beauty has pledged a donation of 0.001% - 0.009% of annual revenue towards racial injustice, specifically for Black lives. Additionally, Ulta Beauty has engaged in actions that advance racial justice and/or uplift BIPOC communities, such as sponsorship of individuals who use their platform to speak out on racial injustice, and co-branded partnerships with other companies.

III. External Communications

Ulta Beauty has issued a public statement, both on social media and in a public memo, addressing racial injustice The public statement acknowledged that they can be doing better to combat racial inequality within their company, included specific calls to action, and explicitly stated "Black Lives Matter." Since June 2020, 31% - 40% of the brand's social media content has been centered around racial injustice with posts seeking to continue the momentum of BLM. While the brand has made an effort to include ethnic diversity, specifically increasing Black representation, aside from a post for Pride, there is little to no evidence on social media of inclusion of the LGBTQ+ community (beyond posting for Pride), people living with disabilities, or a wide range of models with varying body types.
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