Dive Brief:

  • Two weeks after announcing a wholesale deal with Walmart, the Honest Company is expanding its partnership with Ulta Beauty, according to a company press release.
  • Honest Beauty will now be sold inside Ulta stores, including more than 635 locations, and is also launching a new skincare line exclusively with the beauty retailer.
  • The Honest Beauty Clearing Collection, which features an acne foam cleanser, an acne serum and an acne spot treatment will be available in Ulta’s stores and online.

Dive Insight:

The Honest Company is shoring up its wholesale roster. The brand, which filed for an IPO in April last year and debuted on the stock market in May, a few weeks ago announced a deal with Walmart to sell essential baby and personal care items like diapers, wipes and body care online and in “thousands of Walmart stores in the fall.”

Now, the Jessica Alba-founded company is expanding its relationship with Ulta to include the beauty retailer’s brick-and-mortar stores. Alba in a statement called it a “huge opportunity” to cater to clean and conscious beauty shoppers. 

“The exclusive launch paired with an expansion into brick-and-mortar stores solidifies Honest’s omni-channel positioning within the marketplace and delivers greater access to its products for consumers than ever before,” the company said in its release.

Ulta has become a popular destination for DTC beauty brands hoping to expand their presence, but it was rival Sephora that nabbed a deal with Glossier last week. Both specialty retailers have made it a part of their strategy to sign exclusive agreements with up-and-coming brands, and Ulta Chief Merchandising Officer Monica Arnaudo touted the partnership with Honest Beauty as another way to please clean beauty customers.

“With the innovative Honest Beauty offerings in our stores and online, we will now offer the opportunity to experience beauty and skincare options that mirror their preferences and deliver great efficacy,” Arnaudo said in a statement.

While the Honest Company’s wholesale deals are shaping up, the brand’s losses are still dragging the retailer down. In 2021, the company reported a loss of $38.7 million, more than double the previous year’s net loss, which it attributed to IPO costs. 

The first quarter of 2022, however, saw net loss more than triple, to $15 million. At the time, CEO Nick Vlahos said “softness” in the company’s digital sales stemmed from shoppers returning to stores, and highlighted that the company “expects to return to growth over the next three quarters as we introduce new innovation, expand with new strategic retail partners and improve the digital experience on Honest.com.”



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