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The current beauty landscape is becoming more and more intertwined with philanthropic endeavors, and there is a growing number of beauty brands that give to charity, and foster a discourse that extends far beyond the bounds of the latest palette drop or buzzy new retinol serum. Whether it’s donating a portion of proceeds from a specific product to support reproductive rights , supporting animals displaced by abuse, neglect and natural disasters, or dropping a Pride palette that benefits the LGBTQIA+ community, the latest trend in the beauty space seems to be less focused on a specific color scheme or skin finish, and more concerned with giving back.
For as long as I can remember, the beauty industry has often been clouded by an unspoken notion that loving makeup, adopting a multi-step skincare routine, or getting your hair done every month or so were frivolous self-indulgences promoting vanity and materialism. This stereotype has further underscored the concurrent assumption that those who enjoy beauty are therefore inherently unintelligent and/or uninterested in “real issues.” Fortunately, it seems that this outdated trope is finally starting to lift, with brands and forward-thinking publishers cultivating a discourse surrounding beauty as a means of self care, self-worth, approaching beauty as an opportunity to foster a broader dialogue surrounding (often sociopolitical, body-positive, and pro-female) issues through a shared love of skincare, hair and makeup. I guess my point is that loving beauty and spending your hard-earned cash at Sephora is one such taboo that seems to be going extinct, and I think that beauty is being used more as a tool to raise awareness about other topics than ever before.
An even more significant takeaway from this shift in perception, is the alliance that the beauty sphere has quietly formed with philanthropy over the past several years. Sure, there are plenty of apparel, wellness, and other sectors that are also giving back and doing good in a number of different ways (Hello Reformation, you’re the best), but it seems like the beauty industry is spearheading the movement, dropping product launches with a distinct messages behind them to foster a dialogue on pertinent issues and causes that consumers genuinely care about, but perhaps deserve a bit more of attention.
Alternatively, if you’re looking to give back through beauty, but really can’t bear to add more inventory to your already overflowing stash of products, there are a few charities that accept unused (…some accept slightly used) makeup, skincare, fragrance and hygiene products to give them to women in need. Some of the most notable charities of this type include Project Beauty Share, Share Your Beauty, and Give And Makeup (founded by skincare guru Caroline Hirons). With that being said, if you are in the mood to indulge in a new product or two, these beauty brands and limited-edition launches are purchases you can feel good about giving your money to.
1. Thrive Causemetics
If the play-on-word title didn’t give it away, Thrive Causemetics is a beauty brand that gives back to a number of different organizations and charities that help women battling cancer, domestic violence and homelessness. This summer Thrive Causemetics will donate $40 million in product to over 100 nonprofit organizations across America. Earlier in June, the brand rolled out a $10 million product donation initiative, marking the launch of Brilliant Eye Brightener. On July 9, a $30 million product donation (in honor of the brand’s founder Karissa Bodnar’s 30th birthday) will launch.
Thrive Causmetics Buildable Blur Cream
This next-level blurring complexion-enhancer isn’t your average BB or CC Cream. It’s formulated with color-adjusting micropigments to ensure a close shade match and delivers buildable, sheer to full coverage. It’s also infused with blurring, light-reflecting pigments to soften the look of fine lines and dark circles for a selfie-ready finish. It also doubles as a comprehensive skincare product, chock full of dullness-erasing antioxidants like Vitamin C and broad spectrum SPF 35 to defend your skin from UVA, UVB and blue light damage from your screen.
2. Charlotte Tilbury
Charlotte Tilbury is known for her incredible range of lip products, from her best-selling Pillow Talk lipstick to her lip-expanding liners that wear like a dream. Her latest lippie drop is no different from the rest, other than the fact that it’s actually a collaboration with Women for Women International, a humanitarian organization that support female survivors of war. This collection is backed by an impressive $1 million pledge of Hot Lips sales to benefit the charity.
Charlotte Tilbury Hot Lips 2 Lipstick
This second drop of Hot Lips lippies is inspired by 11 of the makeup artist’s favorite female icons who she feels are “Rule breakers, record makers and history shakers”, including J.K. Rowling, Amal Clooney, Jennifer Aniston, and her mom Patsy Tilbury to name a select few. These lipstick bullets come with ornately designed cases and are refillable, making them a more eco-friendly choice to boot.
As a celebration of their commitment to cruelty-free skincare, Strivectin recently partnered with Red Rover to drop a limited-edition Little Lifters set, which includes two of their best-selling anti-aging products: Tightening & Scultping Face Creama and the Tl Advanced™ Tightening Neck Cream PLUS to help firm, lift and contour your face, neck, and chest. Red Rover offers financial and emotional support to both pets and humans during times of crisis, whether from abuse, natural disasters, or other emergencies. $1 from every sale of the set will go directly to Red Rover and help animals and pet owners in need.
Strivectin Little Lifters Duo
This two-in-one set is not only a major bargain (retail value is priced at $111), but it also funds a good cause supporting by the Red Rover’s initiative and by supporting a brand that’s committed to humane, cruelty-free practices. These best-selling anti-aging products target sagging and firmness, and promote a more contoured jaw line and plump-looking skin to match.
4. Shea Moisture
Shea Moisture is one company that’s been ahead of its time since day one, when it launched in 1991 by its two Harlem-based founders, Nyema Tubman and Richelieu Dennis. Over the years, the brand has cultivated their own ways of giving back, and established their very own Community Commerce program, which donates a portion of proceeds from select items in the line to partner organizations across Ghana, Jamaica and Turkey to help fight poverty, gender inequality in the work force, and build safe and sustainable infrastructure to promote better working conditions.
Shea Moisture Manuka Honey & Mafura Oil Hair Mask
This best-selling hair mask is backed by a near perfect 5-star ratings for a reason. The ultra-rich formula delivers a surge of breakage-reducing ingredients that strengthen your strands without depleting moisture. It’s infused also infused with raw shea butter and antioxidants including African Fig Rock to reduce frizz and restore shine.
5. Mary Kay
From now until August 15, $1 from each sale of Mary Kay’s Paparazzi Pink Lipstick will go to the brand’s global Pink Changing Lives program, helping to better the lives of women and children who have been victimized by domestic violence through providing life-saving resources.
Mary Kay Paparazzi Pink Lipstick
This best-selling, ultra-pigmented lipstick glides on the lips and delivers solid color payoff and hours of smudge-free wear time. This blue-toned, fuchsia-spiked pink is a universally flattering pop of color that looks stunning on a wide range of skin tones.
6. Save me From
Founder April Peck launched Save me From to not only provide a range of results-driven hair care, but to also help spread awareness for suicide prevention after her sister took her own life. 10% of the company’s net income goes to foundations that advocate for suicide prevention.
Save Me From Product Overload Treatment
This “tip to root reboot,” treatment blasts away scalp-harming product buildup from dry shampoos and hair sprays, which helps unclog hair follicles and thus leads to improved hair regrowth.
7. Elizabeth Arden
Elizabeth Arden’s March On Lipstick in Pink Punch was created with brand ambassador Reese Witherspoon, and 100% of the proceeds are donated toward the brand’s one million dollar donation to UN Women. UN Women (The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women) works to promote female empowerment and gender equality around the world by offering support to efforts to ending violence against women and fostering economic empowerment.
Elizabeth Arden March On Lipstick in Pink Punch
This limited-edition lippie not only supports female empowerment and gender equality globally, but it’s also formulated with hydrating ingredients to keep your lips plump and smooth without sacrificing color payoff or wear time.
8. La Mer
La Mer is the quintessential leader in the luxury beauty space, and it’s nice to know that, despite the line’s high-end price points, the brand is committed to giving back. The brand launched their limited edition La Mer Blue Heart Moisturizing Cream at the beginning of the month, and is donating to the La Mer Blue Heart Oceans Fund until the end of June. La Mer’s Blue Oceans Fund supports ocean conversation projects around the world. For every public post on social media posing with the luxe cream accompanies by the hashtag ##LaMerBlueHeart, La Mer will donate $25 to the initiative. Now, you can justify investing in this coveted cream without a looming sense of guilt.
Blue Heart Crème de la Mer
This beloved cream is formulated with the company’s proprietary Miracle Broth™—a blend of skin-loving ingredients from the sea to plump, hydrate and soothe without feeling greasy or heavy.
Younique’s founders, Derek Maxfield and Melanie Huscroft, launched the beauty brand with the ultimate goal to empower women and foster the advancement of gender equality in the workplace in beyond. The brand also runs The Younique Foundation and Defend Innocence, which both aim to provide financial and emotional support to women who suffered from sexual abuse as a child or teenager.
Younique Moodstruck Epic 4D Mascara
This volumizing, fiber-infused mascara sculpts and defines the lashes, resulting in a bold look that revivals lash extensions without smearing and smudging throughout the day.
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