The Beauty Journal

Something You should Know: In the cosmetic industry, who owns whom?

Posted on: March 5, 2010

—–Updated on March 15th, 2010. Many thanks to Poppy for the info on YSL

So today I was talking with a friend online, and she asked me a really good question: In the cosmetic industry, who owns whom? I remember talking briefly about the major cosmetic groups in My Beauty Philiospohy post: Estee Lauder, L’Oreal, Procter & Gamble, Johnson & Johnson, Beiersdorf, Unliver, and Louis Vuitton-Moet Hennessy (LVMH). Let me list out all the major cosmetic brands you are familiar with in the market, and give you a general idea which parent companies they belong to.

  • Estée Lauder owns: Aramis, Aveda, Clinique, Bobbi Brown, M.A.C, Origins, Jo Malone, La Mer, Tommy Hilfiger fragrances, Bumble + bumble, American Beauty, Flirt, Good Skin, Grassroots, Michael Kors Beauty, Darphin, Ojon, and Donna Karan Cosmetics.
  • L’Oreal owns: Maybelline New York, Garnier, Lancôme, Helena Rubinstein, BioMedic, Vichy, Biotherm, Shu Uemura, Kiehl’s, Soft Sheen-Carson, Redken, Matrix, Kerastase, Giorgio Armani, Inneov, Sanoflore, CCB Paris, Dermablend, The Body Shop, Skinceuticals, Ralph Lauren, La-Roche-Posay, and Yves Saint Laurent.
  • Procter & Gamble owns: Cover Girl, Max Factor, Anna Sui, Olay, DDF, Aussie, Camay, Clairol, Head & Shoulders, Herbal Essences, Ivory, Infusium-23, Pantene, Fredric Fekkai, Gillette, Noxzema, SK-II, and Zest.
  • Johnson & Johnson owns: Neutrogena, Aveeno, Clean & Clear, RoC, Rogaine, Lubriderm, Purpose, and Ambi.
  • Beiersdorf owns: Nivea, La Prairie, Eucerin, and Juvena
  • Unilever owns: Dove, Pond’s, Vaseline, and Sunsilk
  • Louis Vuitton-Moet Hennessy (LVMH) owns: Dior, Guerlain, Givenchy, Benefit, Fresh, Make Up For Ever, and Sephora’s namesake line.
  • Shiseido owns: Cle de Peau (CDP), Dicila, Ipsa, Ettusais, Carita, Decleor, Ayura, Asplir, DeLuxe, Selfit, Whitia, Pure & Mild, Kesho Wakusei, Yuxia, 5S, NARS, Maquillage, Aupres, JS, Za, UNO, Jean Paul Gaultier cosmetics, and Issey Miyak.

I hope this list will make us all smarter shoppers in the future.

51 Responses to "Something You should Know: In the cosmetic industry, who owns whom?"

wow so informative! i didn’t know estee lauder owns mac!! :D

Thank you Mei!

good to learn it! haha

some surprises are there right?

Lore all owns YSl

Hello Michelle,

do you know who owns YSL Beauty? I have been looking on their website and cannot determine if it is still an independent.



Aha, just found on the French version of Wikipedia(!) that L’Oreal acquired YSL Beaute sometime during 2008.

And they do appear on the L’Oreal Group website, but it is certainly not easy to find!

All the best,

Thank you Poppy! I did not know YSL is owned by L’Oreal! Do you mind me adding your findings to the list?

Is Yuxia a Chinese brand? Is the facial scrub safe to use? I’m in China now. There’s a promoter who applied the scrub on my hand and it instantly became bleach-white! Then she applied moisturiser on it and it was absorbed swiftly. I wonder if there’s any strong chemical in yuxia scrub that may cause health repercussions. But I’m keen to remove the blackheads.

Do you mean Yue sai ? If yes that’s L’Oreal’s.

These are the mother companies but whom runs the show at each? What kind of influence do these owners take on the companies individually is a question we should be asking. For example, MAC belongs to Lauder as a child does a parent. The child has rules, an allowance and a dream. What role do we really see each parent company taking on each brand?

Food for thought-Jess

Reblogged this on clayzmama says…… and commented:
Ok, I adore beauty products, and LOVED this post putting ME in the know!! Check it out, girlfriends! You may be surprised!!

I just wonder if the companies cross promote. Economies of scale? As a business women who sunk some $$$$ in Dior, I wonder.

Pretty! This was an extremely wonderful article.
Thank you for supplying these details.

hi!,I love your writing so a lot! proportion we keep in touch more
approximately your article on AOL? I require an expert on this area to solve my
problem. May be that is you! Taking a look ahead to see you.

What this actually means is that brands you thought were cruelty free no longer are and many did not mention this once they were acquired. Which also means, that raw materials that they receive before making the final product have in fact been tested on animals. I don’t see how you can trust companies who go back on their own policies and then try to hide it. I was OK with using Origins before but I no longer considering who owns them now.

Petra, I agree 100%! As soon as I found out the extent of animal testing for beauty, I threw away hundreds of dollars worth in products that were all tested on animals. I now only buy cruelty free stuff that is usually hand made or leaping bunny approved. I will not contribute to killing animals for vanity!

I have been using Darphin since 2000 and have noticed that my favorite product “Stimulskin Plus Serum” (It is in the lifting series), it is completely different!! New packaging, thicker and a clear color! Estée Lauder assured me that the change in the product was minimal! It is nothing like it used to be, what can I do? Can someone suggest how I can protest this? I made a comment on their site and they dudn’t post it!

Updates: Shiseido bought Bare Escentuals; L’Oreal is buying Urban Decay.

Update: Estee Lauder owns: smashbox and Proctor and Gamble now has Dolce and Gabbana Makeup if you would like to update this list.


Reblogged this on Prissy in Polish and commented:
Interesting.. good information here

to who Chanel belong? Thank you.

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Well, as far as Estée Lauder, I hope you guys know that the owner, Ronald Estée is the largest benefactor to Isreal’s government. He is has political ties to the Isreali military and as we speak is involving himself, making statements about the Greek governments political party Golden Dawn. If you do not support wars in the Middle East, maybe you should not purchase brands owned by Ronald Lauder. Peace!

Left a reply for you if you scroll down a bit! Shalom..Michele

Bette, I presume we should purchase at al-kaida, in dubai or UAE that are supporting terrorist. Fu…ck off from Israel, ok? Just leave them in peace and they will know already what to do with those wild arabs.

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An impressive share! I’ve just forwarded this onto a co-worker who had been doing a little research on this. And he in fact bought me dinner because I found it for him… lol. So allow me to reword this…. Thank YOU for the meal!! But yeah, thanks for spending time to discuss this matter here on your internet site.

Gee Bette,,,just read your June 15th comment…hmm is it ok for the good old boys to back Christians,,,,,I do help those who need help as in NAACP !!!!!! Cancer is what needs to disappear & since there is lots of Cancerous individuals in the Middle East I sure will help Israel FYI our only Allie I mean Bette if your a USA woman or man you just might know that,,G.d Bless you Ronald Lauder right with you! SHALOM YOU TOO BETTE

Hi Michelle, I just reblogged this. Very informative, thank you! -Karen, Swampscott Realtor blogspot

Shiseido also owns Bare Escentuals & Buxom

Christian Dior owns Louis Vuitton-Moet Hennessy. Not the other way around.

Also I believe Loreal owns eMichelle Phan cosmetics

Corrected the name in comment below…

I read that, too. Thank you.

No problem. I noticed it when I made an online order with em Michelle, it identified the site as L’Oreal.

I believe Loreal also owns em Michelle Phan Cosmetics

Reblogged this on The Girlfriend's Guide to Surviving your 20's and commented:
i have been looking for a list of the beauty companies that own other beauty companies for a couple of months ago. The Beauty Journal here on wordpress has researched and compiled a good list for those companies.
Thank you to The Beauty Journal!

This was a great article thanks for the information…as a former makeup artist I did know quite a few of these but some surprised me!! For those of you that are concerned with animal testing, I am not usually one to self promote on blogs like this, but I think that many of you product lovers would be interested in the products that Perfectly Posh offers. I’m an independent consultant for this company and we are 100% cruelty free and naturally based. It’s not a makeup line…although we do carry lip stains…we are mostly a pampering line that carries an array of natural, vegan, gluten free, parafin free, petroleum free, sulfate free products for the face and body, like body scrubs, cremes, facial products and hair products. Please check out my website if your interested in seeing what Posh has to offer! ..thanks!

I do generally remember which brands are owned by animal testing parent companies but I’m forever mixing up who owns who, I was sure that Proctor and Gamble owned MAC so I’m glad for this quick reference list. I was so devastated when I found out that L’Oreal had brought The Body Shop and they now own Urban Decay.

In 2012 when I had surgery to stop reflux and fix a hernia, I have a clear memory of being woken up post-op and asked basic questions (such as my name to make sure I’d woken right) before being given pain killers. They told me I had very dry lips and asked if I wanted Vaseline, my reply was “no because it’s tested on animals”. One of the nurses who was there when they woke me was doing rounds and taking vitals a couple of days later when I wasn’t on the Pethidine and she asked me if it’s true that Vaseline is tested on animals. I kid you not I laughed (which hurt) because I wasn’t entirely sure that I had actually said it. That was only a year after I’d discovered that animal testing still happened. I still laugh that I’d managed to respond automatically like that despite the fact that I was in a lot of pain. People who’ve just been woken up can say some really strange things but apparently they’d not heard that one before lol.

[…] the internet I finally found the list I’d been looking for thanks to a fellow blogger over on The Beauty Journal. I’ve popped the link directly to the post but also created this image, however this list is not […]

[…] from The Beauty Journal – Something You should Know: In the cosmetic industry, who owns whom? Original post by: […]

Hi, as you have posted the changing branding and companies, it is looking something good, I am working with a packaging company, they are growing the paper and cardboard packaging for the cosmetics,
Thank you!

I have to tell you that after beginning my own organic cosmetic and skin care company,

I was really disheartened to find out that most cosmetic companies are owned by only 4-5 major companies in the world.

Shiseido owns NARS and Estee Lauder owns MAC and L’Oreal just purchased Urban Decay —-which only adds to their massive list of cosmetic companies that include SkinMedica, Clinique, Bobbi Brown, Hilfiger Fragrances and so on and so on….

Different packaging, different scents, different demographic/audience targets and genres….The kicker of it all?

We’re probably using the exact same products that are sold for hundreds of dollars in department stores but are also sold in cheaper jars and bottles for 1/5th of the price at the local drugstore. ♥ It’s about the image- and the what sells to whom and where?

Nevertheless, any makeup or skincare product that is sold in a department store, drugstore, or big beauty line name has chemicals and preservatives to maintain its shelf life so that profits are maximized and nothing goes to waste. Go Natural. Go Custom. Have your makeup handmade and delivered to you in beautiful packaging. Only then will you know the QUALITY of skin nourishing and natural makeup.

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