Who owns what in the beauty industry?

Did you know that L’Oreal owns Lancome, Shu Uemura and the Body Shop? And that Estee Lauder owns 29 brands including MAC and Clinique? The beauty industry is dominated by a few corporations owning multiple major brands. There are lots of differences across brands owned by the same company, but there are also lots of similarities. Those companies often put similar ingredients in both low-end and high-end products to save money. The products have the same active ingredients, but different non-active ones, which give a unique scent, texture, color… Sometimes high-end products are made using more expensive ingredients and innovative technologies, but the truth is they cost more because people expect expensive products to work much better than inexpensive ones and are therefore willing to pay more for them. So, before you spend lots of money on luxury product, compare its ingredients to those of their less expensive sister brands. Here’s a list (it’s not complete, but will give you a little insight) of who owns what in the beauty industry:

ALLIANCE BOOTS
Boots
Botanics
No 7
Soltan

COTY
Calvin Klein
Davidoff
Jill Sander
Lancaster
Rimmel London
Also owns lots of brands of perfume including Sarah Jessica Parker, Jennifer Lopez, Kylie Minogue, David and Victoria Beckham, Marc Jacobs and Chloe

ESTEE LAUDER
American Beauty
Aramis
Aveda
Bobbi Brown
Bumble and Bumble
Clinique
Coach
Daisy Fuentes
Darphin
Donna Karan
Estee Lauder
Eyes by Design
Flirt!
Good Skin
Grassroots
Jo Malone
Kiton
Lab Series Skincare for men
La Mer
MAC
Michael Kors
Missoni
Mustang
Ojon
Origins
Prescriptives
Sean John Fragrances
Smashbox Cosmetics
Tom Ford Beauty
Tommy Hilfiger

JOHNSON AND JOHNSON
Ambi skincare
Aveeno
Clean and Clear
Johnsons
Lubriderm
Neutrogena
Purpose
Piz Buin
RoC
Rogaine
Shower to shower
Vendome

KAO
Ban
Bioré
Curél
Guhl
Jergens
John Frieda

L’OREAL (partly owned by Nestle):
Biotherm
Cacharel
Diesel
Garnier
Giorgio Armani
Helena Rubinstein
Innéov
Kérastase
Kiehl’s
L’Oréal Paris
L’Oréal Professionnel
Lancôme
La Roche-Posay
Matrix
Maybelline New York
Mizani
Pureology
Ralph Lauren
Redken
Softsheen-Carson
Shu Uemura
SkinCeuticals
The Body Shop
Vichy Laboratoires
Victor & Rolf

LVMH
Acqua di Parma
Benefit
Dior
Fresh
Givenchy
Guerlain
Kenzo
La Brosse et Dupont
Make up for ever
Perfumes Loewe
Sephora

PROCTER AND GAMBLE
Aussie
Braun
Clairol
Covergirl
Gillette
Head and Shoulders
Herbal Essences
Infusium 23
Max Factor
Noxzema
Olay
Oribe
Pantene
Wella
Also owns lots of fragrances including Boss, Hugo and Valentino

REVLON
Almay
Revlon
Ultima 2

UNILEVER
Axe
Dove
Lux
Ponds
Sunsilk
Vaseline

29 Comment

  1. I’m glad you did this! I worked in an Executive Search firm and I learned all those as well. It was funny because I was headhunting people from Maybelline to work for L’oreal before..can you imagine how stupid i look? lol :)

  2. That’s really interesting. I learned a couple of these because I have a friend who works for Estée Lauder but gets MAC discounts and a ton of others (obviously!).

    It’s interesting to see who Sephora is owned by, considering they push a lot of Benefit products on their website, and it’s the only place to buy Make-Up Forever online (that I can find).

    I really hate Clairol’s new advertising campaign for Nice ‘n’ Easy, so I’m tempted to boycott their other sister-brands now! (I’ve always hated Herbal Essence’s advertising, so I’ve never bought them, either)

    Mind if I link to this post on my blog?

    Thanks for your comment about the EOTD, too =] I spent hours doing it, and now I’m really annoyed because I woke up this morning and had a sty on my eyelid, eww! It hurts, too =[ No more EOTDs for a while. ;_;

  3. Sab: I knew some of them, but I didn’t realese how many brands Estee Laudr owned until I started researching for the article. What are your fav brands?

    Nikki: lol. That’s funny. :) I’m glad you like the post.

    fabulessbeauty: you’re welcome :)

    Anastasia: Of course you can link to the post. :) Your friend is lucky, I wanna work for them too now lol. I don’t like Clairol new ad campaign either, but I don’t really like any ads at all. I only Collistar ads in magazines. They have a picture of the model, one of the product with its description and price. Works much better than just a picture and a slogan in my opinion. At least you know what you’re getting and if you can afford it.
    I’m sorry you have a sty, that’s nasty. Hope it goes away soon!

    Alyssa: yeah, L’Oreal owns way too many lol

    Lydia: I’m glad you enjoyd the post :)

  4. WOW!! good info. I’ve heard estee lauder owns other high end names but didn’t know they own these much!!! I’m gonna bookmark this page for future reference. Thanks

  5. Great info! I work part time in the beauty industry so I have been under some of the brands. But over here the brands are all under local companies so even though internationally some of the brands are under a big company but they are separately owned by companies here. Eg. Benefit in Malaysia is owned by Starlight Cosmetics where the owner used to be in LVMH and LVMH in Malaysia now no longer carries Guerlain and MUFE. *shrugs* Stila used to be under Estee but now no longer and in Malaysia, Stila’s under Luxasia alongside La Prairie, NV Perricone, YSL, RMK and I can’t remember the rest.

  6. Cinthia: you’re welcome. I was suprised by how many brands ste lauder owns, too!

    Connie: I didn’t know that. That is some interesting info! Thanks for sharing.

  7. I think it s shame that the big companies take over all the brands that are very good, for instance sebastian products were brilliant particularly potion 9. Wella took them over and now they are just good. The content seems to change in products when companies are taken over by the big boys. I do not know whether theusual decline is purely to save on costs or to also to maximise profit, giving us products that do not work; if they can make the product so that it really does not work then people will buy more different products to find one that does – given thiese lists of ownership it would more than likely be a round trip around all the lines they own without the customer even knowing it. As for all these beauty products for eyes nothing works better than plain old touch of vaseline- lets see them change that !!!

  8. Hi Lindsay, it’s really sad when that happens. I really like MAC, but since Estee Lauder bought it the prices have been increasing, the sizes of products are getting smaller and the quality isn’t as good as it used to be. I guess they do it to make the highest profit with the smaller cost on their party, but it’s a shame to see great brands go downhill. Companies would make lots more money by releasing great products in the first place.

  9. man, that’s stressful. I only just started thinking recently about animal testing, and knowing that loreal owns body shop? that stresses me out. Why can’t all of Loreal’s businesses have ethical treatment of people, the environment, and animals?!!!
    Now I have a huge list of places I can’t buy makeup from because they all test on animals etc :(

  10. Anana, that of animal testing is a delicate subject. I don’t like animal testing at all, that’s just cruel but I understand why some companies do it. If you include a new ingredient in a product without any or very few testing someone could have a serious or even deadly reaction to it. On the other hand, testing the same ingredients lots of times during the years is not only cruel, but useless as you already know what the results are going to be.

    But unfortunately, trying to avoid products tested on animals is not so easy. That’s because even if a company doesn’t test the finished products on animals or does no tests on animal at all, each ingredient the company uses has been tested at some point by someone else.

    But the good news is, scientists are developing new ways of testing ingredients and products that in the (hopefully very near) future will replace animal testing once and for all.

  11. Anana, it IS stressful and disconcerting. You are right to feel that way. The real good news is that there are plenty of amazing beauty products that are made by companies that do not rely on animal exploitation as a way to cut corners and get away with putting cheap caustic chemicals into our cosmetics. Try Urban Decay, Kiss My Face even Revlon just for starters. Their products are great! It’s easy to find cruelty free products, in fact it is your moral obligation to do so and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise:)

  12. You can add Pureology to the L’Oreal list. I work for them as a video production contractor and they are a sister brand of Redken 5th Ave. Thus indirectly a L’Oreal company.

    Best,
    Joel

    • Sandra, Sally Hansen is owned by Coty, while Physicians Formula is owned by Physician Formula INC.

  13. Thank you, it was interesting to learn more about this subject. As a drugstore employee, I knew quite a few (I also live near the L’Oreal manufacturing plant here in Kentucky, which also has advertisements for their other brands). Being a makeup enthusiast, I wanted to look into what other brands are owned under same big brand.

  14. Estee Lauder also owns Smashbox Cosmetics. Just wanted to add that one. I had no idea that Estee Lauder owned so many of the cosmetic lines really makes you rethink the cosmetic line that you are buying. thanks.

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