The US beauty retailer has launched the ‘Conscious Beauty’ program, an initiative aiming at providing more choice and information to customers in terms of sustainability.

The program is set to debut this fall and will certify brands under five, key pillars - Clean Ingredients, Cruelty Free, Vegan, Sustainable Packaging and Positive Impact - intended to meet customers’ search for products helping them to reduce their environmental footprint.

Under its Sustainable Packaging pillar, Ulta Beauty is taking further steps to reduce the environmental impact of the products they sell. The retailer pledges to ensure 50 percent of all packaging sold, including the Ulta Beauty Collection, will be made from recycled or bio-sourced materials, or will be recyclable or refillable by 2025.

As the beauty retail leader, we have the unique opportunity to inspire positive change in our industry,” said Dave Kimbell, president of Ulta Beauty. “With ‘Conscious Beauty at Ulta Beauty’, our focus is to educate, guide and simplify product choice and elevate those brands doing good for our world. This initiative helps our guests readily navigate our assortment through the lens of what matters most to them. We are thrilled to offer such transparency and set significant standards as a company.

Clean and sustainable brands

The platform will help Ulta customers navigate brand choices tailored to their personal values across the following areas:

  • Clean Ingredients: Indicates which brands comply with the Ulta Beauty Made Without List, an ingredient standard created for Conscious Beauty.
    • The Made Without List was developed in partnership with ingredient and health experts. As research, technology and regulations evolve, so too will the Made Without List. At launch, this designation indicates a brand is free of parabens, phthalates and ingredients from more than 25 chemical categories.
    • Participating brands will be certified via ClearForMe to ensure ingredient transparency.
    • The recently announced Credo Collection at Ulta Beauty, featuring eight clean beauty brands, will launch within the Conscious Beauty platform.
  • Cruelty Free: Elevates brands that certify as never engaging in animal testing. This pillar incorporates third-party certification from organizations such as PETA, Leaping Bunny, and Choose Cruelty-Free.
  • Vegan: Underscores beauty products made free of animal products, animal by-products, or animal derivatives.
  • Sustainable Packaging: Designates brands made with reduced, recyclable or refillable packaging to minimize the more than 120 billion packaging units produced globally annually within the cosmetics industry1.
    • Ulta Beauty will pilot a circular shopping experience as the exclusive beauty retailer for Loop, a reusable packaging pioneer. This relationship will fuel actionable improvements to packaging processes, begin to tackle the sizeable beauty-waste issue, and contribute to Ulta Beauty’s2025 sustainable packaging goals.
    • The company will support the Sustainable Packaging Coalition’s (SPC’s) mission to make actionable improvements in packaging systems and will apply How2Recycle instructions on owned brand packaging and print materials.
  • Positive Impact: Highlights brands with giving back at their core and those that champion meaningful causes.

To ensure accountability and drive the initiative forward, Ulta Beauty established the Conscious Beauty Advisory Council. Collectively tackling industry issues, cultivating communal efforts, and bringing unique perspectives across beauty forward, the Council brings together experts at the forefront of clean beauty, product development, packaging sustainability and brand leadership. To date, the Council includes Annie Jackson, co-founder and COO, Credo Beauty and Tom Szaky, CEO and co-founder, Loop, among others.

We have always taken pride in offering guests a diverse assortment of products to meet their individual beauty needs, including many brands that align to the Conscious Beauty pillars,” continued Kimbell. “Today’s announcement marks a definitive milestone on our ongoing journey in this space and we look forward to further meeting guests needs this fall in-store and online.