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How Beauty Brands Are Responding to Coronavirus

Many companies are making hand sanitizer — but others are going above and beyond with wide-ranging efforts during the pandemic.

Beauty brands big and small have gotten on board the hand sanitizer train, but a select few are going above and beyond during the coronavirus pandemic — offering anything from donated medical equipment to financial assistance. Right now, it’s the bigger companies that are more able to flex their resources to make a difference.

This week, Unilever unveiled a list of sweeping initiatives around the COVID-19 pandemic, touching everything from product and mask donations to early payment of small and medium-size suppliers. Unilever estimates that through worldwide programs, it is contributing more than 100 million euros to help people affected around the world.

In the U.S., through a program called United for America, Unilever contributed more than $8 million worth of food, soap, personal hygiene and home cleaning products from Unilever brands through Feeding America, which will distribute the supplies to Americans in need through food banks. The company is also donating 200,000 face masks to local hospitals in New Jersey.

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Unilever has also organized a national day of service aimed at providing $12 million worth of support through donation of “essential item[s]” produced across Unilever’s 14 U.S. factories on May 21. The products will be donated to community partners. Unilever plans to back that day up with ad spend dedicated to nonprofit partners, relief organizations and other community groups.

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Globally, Unilever is offering 500 million euros in cash-flow relief to small- and medium-sized supply partners in order to help with liquidity and “help them manage and protect jobs,” the company said in a statement. Unilever also pledged to protect its workforce from drops in pay for up to three months.

Alan Jope, Unilever chief executive officer, said: “We hope that our donation of 100 million euros of soap, sanitizer, bleach and food will make a significant contribution toward protecting people’s lives, and that by helping to safeguard our workers’ incomes and jobs, we are giving some peace of mind during these uncertain times. Our strong cash flow and balance sheet mean that we can, and should, give additional support.”

At Henkel, the plan includes donating 2 million euros to the WHO/U.N. foundation COVID-19 fund and other organizations; donating five million units of personal and household hygiene products; the manufacturing of disinfectants in its plants; flexible payment terms for hairdressers, and guaranteeing the health and safety of its employees on its site and working from home.

L’Oréal and the Estée Lauder Cos. have also made financial donations related to COVID-19, while Bulgari has donated a microscopic image acquisition system to the research department of the Lazzaro Spallanzani Hospital in Rome.

L’Oréal, the world’s biggest beauty company, was one of the first to unveil a plan that went far beyond hand sanitizer, though it is also making that. The business is also helping suppliers of small- and medium-sized companies that are facing economic fallout from the COVID-19 pandemic. On top of global initiatives, L’Oréal USA is donating to Feeding America, Feed the Children, and donating face masks to local hospitals in Arkansas and New Jersey. The U.S. segment also plans to freeze payments from small businesses, like hair salons, until businesses open again.

“In this exceptional crisis situation, it is our responsibility to contribute in every possible way to the collective effort,” said Jean-Paul Agon, L’Oréal chairman and ceo, in a statement. “Through these gestures, L’Oréal wishes to express its appreciation, support and solidarity with all those who mobilize with extraordinary courage and abnegation to fight against this pandemic.”


Subhed: Safety Patrol

Subdeck: Beauty companies around the world are making sure that there is a steady supply of hand sanitizer.

Beiersdorf AG is increasing its production of medical-grade disinfectants in its European production network, including in Hamburg and Waldheim, Germany, and Tres Cantos, Spain. In a first phase, the group will provide 500 tons of the product to public emergency services and employees. They have also offered a 50 million euro aid for crisis management, along with a 1,000,000-liter donation of disinfectant and 5 million Nivea skin and hand care products to medical workers globally. In America, they have converted their Tennessee facility to create 500,000 units of hand sanitizer. They will also donate 200,000 units of skin-care products to medical workers on the front lines.

Boscia is donating 1,000 units of cleanser alongside 1,000 units of moisturizer to health care workers across the country.

BoxyCharm is donating 100,000 boxes of beauty products to nurses in New York and Florida.

Bulgari is manufacturing hand sanitizers with longtime fragrance partner Industrie Cosmetiche Riunite for the next two months.

Byte is repurposing its 3D specialty labs to assist making masks, face coverings, and ventilator parts.

CHI is producing FDA-approved hand sanitizers with aloe vera from their organic gardens. They are donating $1 million in hand sanitizer to the cities of Houston and Tomball, TX.

Cherie has started the Future Beauty Fund, pledging $100,000 to help beauty professionals.

Cirem has shifted production efforts entirely to hand sanitizer, which is being donated to local hospitals in Los Angeles.

Groupe Clarins’ production sites in Pontoise, Strasbourg and Amiens, France, have supplied 14,500 bottles of hydro-alcoholic gels to hospitals, and plans to continue manufacturing hand sanitizer throughout the COVID-19 crisis.

Cocoon is a crowdsourced portal distributing donated supplies to the front lines from over 250 brands.

Coty is making hydro-alcoholic gel for medical and emergency services, as well as for Coty employees working in the plants. Kris and Kylie Jenner have also partnered with Coty to make hand sanitizer for medical workers in southern California.

Davines Group delivered more than 50,000 units of hand sanitizer to retirement homes and health-care and charitable organizations in a week.

Dr. Barbara Sturm is donating her virtual masterclass ticket sales to Baby 2 Baby. She is also donating products to healthcare workers around the world.

EO Products has quadrupled their hand sanitizer production. They have partnered with the city of San Francisco to provide them with products.

The Estée Lauder Cos. plans to reopen a Melville, N.Y., manufacturing facility to make hand sanitizer for “high-need groups,” including medical staff.

Firmenich initially donated 20 tons of hand sanitizer, although it recently upped its production capacity to 100 tons.

Garnier has contributed 1 million euros to the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies.

Givaudan established the Givaudan COVID-19 Communities Fund, allowing employees to nominate eligible communities. These funds will go to medical supplies, support, expertise, or funding. They have also started a new production line in their Geneva site to donate the equivalent of 700,000 bottles of hand sanitizer.

Groupe Rocher is using factories from their various brands to create medical equipment. Yves Rocher is producing hand sanitizer, Stanhome is producing disinfectant products, and Petit Bateau is manufacturing masks.

Henkel is shifting production in some facilities to make disinfectants for “public institutions and professional groups.” They have now donated over $600,000 and 1.2 million units of hygiene products.

Highline is donating 10% of their proceeds to the Food Bank of NYC, which has so far been $14,000, or 65,000 meals. They will also be donating products to New York City hospitals.

Intercos upped capacity at facilities in Italy and Poland to supply 300,000 hand sanitizers per day. Some of these were distributed to hospitals in the Lombardy region.

Industrie Cosmetiche Riunite, ICR, implemented the production of hand sanitizers, about 14,000 a day, that are donated to Italian hospitals.

Juara has donated 200 bottles of product to hospital workers on the frontlines of the crisis.

Kopari is donating $1 from every transaction on their website. They are also a part of the Brands x Better Coalition, a partnership of 26 brands donating 10% of proceeds to charity.

La Roche-Posay is donating almost 1 million 200mL bottles of hand sanitizer to hospitals around the world.

L’Erbolario produced 66,000 hand sanitizers in just two days, despite being in Lodi, one of the towns most affected by the COVID-19 outbreak. Sanitizers were donated to local hospitals.

L’Occitane Group plans to make 70,000 liters of hand sanitizers for health authorities and health-care workers in France, plus distribute 25,000 units of soap and hand cream to employees of Assistance Publique–Hôpitaux de Paris. They have also partnered with the Clean the World Foundation and are donating 200,000 sanitary products.

L’Oréal is distributing vast quantities of hand sanitizer, as well as donating $250,000 to Feeding America and matching employee donations dollar-for-dollar. They are also donating $1 million of personal care and hygiene products to Feeding America, as well as surgical and N95 respirator masks to local hospitals. is partnering with the British Beauty Council, bringing their influencer program to out-of-work stylists and beauty freelancers.

LVMH Moët Hennessy Louis Vuitton repurposed production for Parfums Christian Dior and other luxury perfume brands to make hydro-alcoholic gel, which is being distributed for free to French health authorities.

Nestlé is joining forces with the International Federation of the Red Cross to donate food, bottled water and medical nutrition products to countries most affected by the pandemic. They are donating CHF 10 million for immediate deployment to countries in need and is matching employee donations to the Red Cross.

Ormonde Jayne Perfumery has been producing hand sanitizer for complimentary distribution to those entering its boutiques, along with nearby hotels and shops. They are including this hand sanitizer with every order.

Oribe is now offering a 50% commission on purchases made through salons’ affiliate programs, increasing their cash flow while businesses are closed.

The Pierre Fabré Group has converted its production and packaging plants in the south of France and the state of Rio de Janeiro to produce 700,000 100mL bottles of hydroalcoholic gel thus far. They are being donated to France, Germany, Spain and Italy, or alternatively sold in France at the government-mandated price.

PDT Laboratori Cosmetici converted all of its production to supply 50,000 flacons of sanitizing hand gel per day to medical facilities.

Priori Skincare is donating 20% of sales to the Professional Beauty Association’s COVID-19 Relief Fund.

Rahua has donated body care to NYU Langone Health, St. Mary’s Hospital for Children, and Jersey Shore University Medical Center.

Revlon is making “low-cost” hand sanitizer in Spain that is expected to hit the market in the next two weeks, and has plans to ramp up production in Mexico for North America distribution.

Reynaldi converted its production to hand sanitizer to provide 100,000 hand sanitizers per day to local nonprofits, as well as selling them to clients supplying pharmacies and hospitals.

RoC Skincare is producing 10,000 bottles of hand sanitizer to be distributed throughout the country.

Scünci has produced hairbands meant specifically to be worn conjunctively with PPE. Another Conair brand, Leandro Ltd., started a hashtag #LoveLeandro, named for the Conair corporation’s founder, and are donating $50 for every #LoveLeandro-tagged post to the Love Leandro Limited Fund, providing funds for hair stylists’ basic living expenses.

Shiseido is gearing up to make hand sanitizer in its New Jersey production facility, which is currently closed, during the week of April 6. They are donating the hand sanitizer to local facilities in New Jersey and New York.

Tatcha has donated 1 million surgical masks to New York City.

Thrive Causemetics donated over $350,000 to Meals on Wheels, Baby 2 Baby, and Feeding America. They are committed to donating over $1 million to the pandemic.

Unilever is working with the U.K. government to provide 20 million hygiene and personal care products to the developing world. They are each prepared to donate up to £50 million in aid.

Viviscal is donating 10 percent of sales after April 22 to the PBA COVID-19 Relief Fund, up to $100,000