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There Has Been Radio Silence From Beauty Companies About the Immigration Ban

Trump’s policies will eventually affect this global industry.

Nura Afia, Covergirl’s first hijab-wearing ambassador.
Photo: Cindy Ord/Getty Images

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Since the Trump administration announced its immigrant and refugee travel ban for seven primarily Muslim countries on Friday, a handful of apparel companies have slowly released statements of condemnation. Amazon is supporting a lawsuit in Washington state against the executive order, and REI’s CEO just released a similarly strong statement against the order, as did Nike. But where are the beauty companies?

The CEO of Johnson & Johnson (which owns Neutrogena, Clean & Clear, Aveeno, as well as consumer and medical products), Josh Gorsky, was one of a group of business leaders who met with the president last week before the executive order was signed. Gorsky said of the meeting in a statement, according to Cosmetics Design, “I was very pleased to have the opportunity to discuss the critical issues of job creation, corporate tax, and regulatory reform directly with President Trump this morning. The meeting was productive, and I’m looking forward to working with him and the new congress to support the enactment of policies that will increase America’s growth and competitiveness in these areas.” He has not made a public statement related to this ban.

While a handful of personalities within the beauty industry made personal statements on social media — like Tom Pecheux, a renowned makeup artist within fashion circles who recently became YSL Beauty’s global beauty director — brands have pretty much kept their mouths shut.

Beauty is a global industry that will likely will face many challenges from this administration over the next four years, from things like safe cosmetics regulation (or the lack thereof) to potential import issues and fees for companies who manufacture products in, say, China (many do). P&G did put out a statement in support of its vendors and employees impacted by the ban, and restated its “commitment to diversity and inclusion.” It’s hard to believe that other global companies like Estée Lauder, L’Oréal Paris, Unilever, and Coty, among many others, will not be impacted by this immigration ban at some point, if not already. If there aren’t immediate implications for their employees (like at so many tech companies right now), then surely there will be for the customers they serve.

Before the election, Covergirl made headlines when it hired its first ever hijab-wearing Muslim influencer, Nura Afia, to front a campaign. Neither it nor Coty, Covergirl’s parent company, has made a statement on this ban. Over the last few years, beauty companies have tried to make a push for greater diversity within their advertising. For the next four years, it will be interesting to see which companies actually put their mouths where their money is.

Update: February 3, 2017, 8:35 p.m.

This article has been updated to include a statement from P&G.