In May 2020, the brutal death of George Floyd at the hands of police officers reinvigorated the fight for equality through the Black Lives Matters movement. Since then, there has been an emphasis on Black-owned brands in beauty and beyond, keeping in mind that celebrating Black culture and entrepreneurship is not just a trend. For example, Target has created a badge to identify Black-owned brands. And now, Sephora has big news for BIPOC-owned brands.
Sephora has already pledged to dedicate 15 percent of its shelf space to Black-owned beauty brands. And in a new announcement, the mass beauty retailer is promising to kick off 2021 with an exclusive focus on brands founded and owned by people of color — an important shift that Sephora says is a refreshed version of its Accelerate incubation program. For the past five years, the Sephora Accelerate program has focused on cultivating a community of women-owned brands.
In order to have your brand considered, you can fill out the application on sephoraaccelerate.com. To be eligible, you must be a person of color who owns a makeup, skin-care, fragrance, wellness, hair, and/or accessory brand, be owned and operated in the U.S., be at least 18 years old, and be an early-stage brand (with at least a lab sample or prototype) not yet distributed widely by others.
Once a company is chosen, the founder(s) will participate in a six-month program that includes training, mentorship, grants, and funding, all leading up to a final pitch day with the opportunity of launching the brand in Sephora.
If you are a BIPOC founder and/or owner of a beauty brand that fits that prerequisite, you can apply for this program starting today until October 15.
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