L'Oreal and Ulta Boost Support for Black Beauty CompaniesCredit : Kelly Fournier/Unsplash

February is Black History Month, and black-owned companies are getting a share of the spotlight. L'Oreal and Ulta boost support for black beauty companies in a number of ways. InStyle reports that L'Oréal USA, in partnership with the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), has announced the launch of its Inclusive Beauty Fund that will award 30 one-time grants worth $10,000 and professional mentorships to small Black-owned businesses and Black entrepreneurs in the beauty industry.

As COVID-19 is keeping many small businesses in jeopardy, L'Oréal USA and the NAACP will be accepting applications from small business owners in the Black beauty community and will review and identify the most promising ones to invest in. This initiative is supported by L'Oréal USA's newly formed Diversity & Inclusion Advisory Board and they'll work together with the NAACP, L'Oréal USA, and SalonCentric, L'Oréal's professional beauty products distributor, to select candidates.

ALSO READ: First Aid Beauty Paid Off One Million Dollars' Worth Of Student Loans

How To Apply For The Inclusive Beauty Fund

All the applications for the Inclusive Beauty Fund will go through small business platform, Hello Alice. You can find the application form here:  https://hialice.co/LOreal-HelloAlice-Grant

According to the press release on L'Oréal USA's official website, new and existing black-owned beauty businesses of all kinds can apply for the grant and this includes salons and barbershops, spas, beauty schools, makeup artists, haircare specialists, stylists, entrepreneurs, and even startup founders. Interested parties can now apply, and the deadline for applications will be on February 18, 2021. Successful applicants will be announced in April 2021.

Ulta Beauty's Pledge

On the other hand, CNBC reports that Ulta Beauty has pledged to double the assortment of Black-owned beauty brands by the end of this year, and will invest in training programs on anti-discrimination to address the lack of diversity in the cosmetics industry. Bloomburg reveals that some of the black-owned brands that can already be found on Ulta shelves include Mented Cosmetics and Keys Soulcare.

CNBC further discloses that Ulta Beauty has tapped actress and Pattern Beauty founder and CEO Tracee Ellis Ross to be its diversity and inclusion adviser. Ulta has also taken steps to recruit and diversify its staff and created the Diverse Leaders Program to offer mentorship to potential employees.

For full disclosure, here's the complete list of Black-owned brands that can be found on Ulta as listed on their website:

Melanin Haircare
Uoma Beauty
Flora & Curl
Juvia's Place
Beauty Bakerie
Kreyol Essence
Mixed Chicks
Design Essentials Natural Hair
Frederick Benjamin
Grace Eleyae

The 15% Pledge

While L'Oreal and Ulta have not yet taken the 15% Pledge, which is a pledge for major retailers to commit 15 percent of their shelves to Black-owned businesses, Ulta's direct competitor Sephora has already taken the pledge. So have Macy's, Bloomingdales, Gap, Old Navy and Banana Republic. You can view the rest of the list on the 15% Pledge website.  

RELATED ARTICLE: Dermatologist-Approved Sunscreens For Dark Skin Tones