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Beauty Companies See Online Sales Gains During Pandemic

The Estée Lauder Cos. and L'Oréal both generated more than 20 percent of net sales from e-commerce.

With stores closed in much of the quarter ended June 30 due to the coronavirus pandemic, beauty companies suffered sharp losses in brick-and-mortar sales. 

E-commerce sales told a different story — one of consumers flocking to the web to explore, shop and replenish their beauty supplies. Many of those consumers were shopping online for the first time, causing a rapid acceleration in the channel that is expected to stick around, even post pandemic. “[E-commerce] increase[s], particularly brand dot-com and the platforms, is increasing our direct-to-consumer business, which means increasing our data…and our ability to market [to] these consumers,” said Estée Lauder president and chief executive officer Fabrizio Freda. 

Here, see the recent e-commerce upticks from some of the world’s major beauty players. Coty Inc. did not publicly release information around online sales during the most recent quarter. 

E.l.f. Beauty

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Online sales made up 17 percent of total sales, or about $11 million for the quarter ended June 30. 

The Estée Lauder Cos. 

+50 percent year-over-year for the fiscal year, to 22 percent of total sales — $3.1 billion in sales.


+64.6 percent for the six months ended June 30, to 25 percent of total sales, or almost 3.3 billion euros. 

Procter & Gamble

+40 percent year-over-year for the fiscal year, to 10 percent of the overall business — $7 billion in sales. 

Sally Beauty

+278 percent for the quarter, year-over-year, to $137 million. 


13 percent of total sales are e-commerce, with a goal to get to 25 percent by 2023.

Ulta Beauty

Online sales were up 200 percent.