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Mac Cosmetics
MAC Cosmetics

MAC Cosmetics pledges £100,000 to equality and inclusion in the UK

TextAlex Peters

The beauty brand has committed to being an ally in action as well as words

Philanthropy has been built into MAC Cosmetics since almost the beginnings of the brand. The company’s charitable foundation the MAC AIDS Fund has been raising money for over 25 years to support vulnerable communities including most recently those affected by COVID-19. Back in April (can anyone remember April?), MAC donated $10 million to 250 organisations around the world to support vulnerable communities during the pandemic. 

Now, the company has announced that it is investing resources, products, and £100,000 over the next 10 months to local organisations, charities and creators across the UK and Ireland as part of an ongoing commitment to advancing equality, inclusion, and justice. 

Although not explicitly stated, it could be deduced that this move comes in relation to the ongoing global conversations around systemic racism that were sparked following the murder of George Floyd by police officers in May. The statement posted by the company at the time was felt by some to be inadequate and even disingenuous.   

“The MAC community has asked us to build momentum and to not just be allies through words but continue to do so through more tangible actions,” said Fiona Sainty, the general president manager of MAC Cosmetics UK and Ireland in a statement. “We are incredibly proud to do just that with these recent commitments to advancing inclusion and diversity within our workforce and larger makeup Artistry community.”

As part of its commitment, MAC has pledged to “invest in meaningful partnerships” with organisations including with non-profit Incredible Brilliant Youth, to support their artistry course for young and aspiring make-up artists, and Ballet Black, to support diversity in dance and their ongoing work to drive equality for dancers of Black and Asian descent.

The company will also fund a creative scholarship to support minority students in the fashion industry and has committed to continue inclusivity and diversity education internally. 

Back in June, MAC Cosmetics Belgium was forced to issue a statement after receiving accusations of racism within the company from several former employees. At the time, Karla Quiñonez Leon, an Afro-Latina make-up artist, told Dazed Beauty about the racism she endured during her time working at a MAC store in Brussels, Belgium from 2017. “I was so naive to think that I was going to work at a place where equality existed and Black lives really matter,” she said of the experience. “The way they treat Black people at MAC is disgusting.” In response, MAC Belgium apologised and vowed to do better moving forward. 

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