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From the 3rd Annual Shorty Social Good Awards

Benefit Cosmetics Spotlights Bold & Beautiful Women & Girls

Entered in Corporate-Community


Benefit Cosmetics has been making women feel beautiful since its founders, twin sisters Jean and Jane Ford, opened up their first boutique in 1976 in San Francisco's Mission district. Throughout the company's history, Benefit has consistently maintained that beauty runs deeper than what's on the surface, so in 2015, as a way to bring this concept to life in a way that would support women beyond the makeup counter, Benefit created the Bold is Beautiful program: an initiative that focuses on raising money and organizing volunteer projects over the entire month of May in 20+ markets around the world to support various charity organizations that empower women and girls to be smart, successful, and self-sufficient.

Fittingly, these funds predominantly come from the brow: in the US, 100% of all brow wax service proceeds at Benefit's 1,300+ Brow Bars – located in Benefit Boutiques, Belk's, Sephora stores inside JC Penney, and ULTA – are distributed amongst five charity partners, in addition to fundraising on a digital third-party platform for those keen to donate, but unable to make it into a Brow Bar. The US charity beneficiaries of these funds include Girls Inc, Step Up, Dress for Success, Look Good Feel Better, and the Princess Project.

Strategy and Execution

To encourage donations around the country, in 2018, Benefit undertook a number of digital initiatives to drive campaign awareness:


Beyond the hashtag (used 25,000+ times) and the attention paid to Benefit's social channels (more than 7,868,248 impressions, 201,846 likes and 5,069 comments), the BIB program provided numerous volunteer opportunities for hundreds of corporate Benefit staff in San Francisco, and more than 100 volunteer and business-driving activations around the country through the Charity Champions program. To date, BIB has driven in more than $13 million globally, with more than $2.3 million raised in the US alone this year.

The donations that the company accumulates are spread throughout the five charities, and these dollars – as well as the volunteering hours – have had a tremendous impact on each organization's programming. At the Princess Project, 8,000 teens across California attended prom this year wearing items donated to the organization, sourced through events such as the Dress Expo where Benefit employees volunteered three days per week. With Girls Inc., Benefit's BIB funding went towards supporting K-12 program development and its availability to 156,000 girls in 326 cities. With the help of BIB, Step Up was able to assist 1,500 teen girls across four cities (Chicago, Dallas, Los Angeles and New York) – more than doubling their growth since joining with BIB in 2015. Donations to Dress for Success have provided programs focused on money management and civic engagement to more than 500 clients nationwide. And, Look Good Feel Better has served 45,000 cancer patients and survivors through in-person beauty workshops this past year, in addition to 150,000 women accessing virtual support through their online resources.


Entrant Company / Organization Name

Benefit Cosmetics