This list, our annual ranking of the world’s biggest beauty companies, has become a staple of the industry. Longtime devotees of the Top 100 will notice a change this year, however. In addition to the sales-based rankings and company goings-on that you have come to rely on, we’ve added a new dimension to the Top 100, providing in-depth quantitative and qualitative analysis to give you a more nuanced picture of the global competitive landscape in beauty today. Our editors spent countless hours combing through the available financial data for the publicly traded companies on Beauty’s top 100, 50 in all, to compare and contrast everything from operating profit to R&D spending to shareholder equity. We also tapped outside experts, like L2, for insights into beauty’s top digital thinkers, and assessed metrics such as the number of women on the board of directors.
While the numbers one, two and three companies on the list—L’Oréal, Unilever and Procter & Gamble respectively—probably won’t come as a big surprise, hopefully our Top 100 makeover will. E-mail me at email@example.com and let me know what you think, and in the meantime, check out the other features in this issue, including a tour of the coolest new service spots in New York City and a conversation on creativity with star hair stylist Sally Hershberger and designer Doug Lloyd, who notes the way brands talk about beauty is changing to better connect emotionally with consumers. I couldn’t agree more.