MAC celebrates Pride Month by supporting charity and sponsoring events

By Deanna Utroske

- Last updated on GMT

MAC celebrates LGBTQ Pride Month by supporting charity and sponsoring events
The Estée Lauder color cosmetics brand is well known for engaging the LGBTQ community and having a passion for diversity. In honor of Pride Month (the annual celebration of queer life and history), the brand is giving donation voucher to employees and sponsoring events around the US. Cosmetics Design checked in with Nancy Mahon, senior vice president of social good at MAC, to find out more.

All full-time MAC employees received donation vouchers this month. The company vouchers each represent $25 for an eligible LGBTQ non-profit chosen by the individual employees. With 4,200 full-time employees in the US, MAC stands to give $105,000 in total.

The initiative is about “empowering our employees to give back directly”​ to “charity in their own community,” ​Nancy Mahon, senior vice president of social good at MAC, tells Cosmetics Design in a recent email exchange.

Public celebration

MAC has upped its involvement in Pride Month celebrations for 2018. “This year, MAC is participating in more Pride celebrations than ever before with locations across North America including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Orlando, D.C., Houston, Chicago, Columbus, Boston, Toronto, Montreal, Halifax and New York,” ​says Mahon.

MAC employees, family and friends will be at festivals to showcase their pride and in select cities will be out in the crowd handing out goodies and creating pride-themed looks for fans,” ​she tells Cosmetics Design.

Consumer engagement

For MAC the Pride Month initiatives aren’t just about brand recognition. “Going into each community we serve is incredibly important,” ​explains Mahon.

Each time our artists, employees, friend and family come back with a greater sense of commitment to upholding diversity, inclusion and empathy within the MAC family. We are so inspired by the level of engagement of our consumers in connecting the dots between great brands and products and a sense of purpose,” ​she says, adding that, “Our artists are truly our best ‘influencers’ - they believe in supporting the community and we’ve loved to see their passion each Pride Month across social media and in the streets at individual festivals.”

Industry attention

“MAC is a brand that is welcome to all - All Ages, All Races, All Genders,” ​emphasizes Mahon. “We take that credo to heart in everything that we do to ensure employees feel safe and valued and customers of all walks of life feel welcomed. For us, inclusivity isn’t just a talking point during pride month, it’s a business imperative every day of the year. Our employees, partners and customers deserve that”

Asked about the influx of brands and retailers supporting and marketing to LGBTQ people this month and all year round, she tells Cosmetics Design, “we really are heartened to see so many brands across industries understanding the importance of incorporating diverse life experiences and identities into their product development, marketing and talent base. At MAC we work together every day to live our values and continue to look for ways we can raise the bar to ensure we produce the best color cosmetics for ALL people.”

Commenting on gender-fluid marketing in particular, Mahon says, “We hope it’s not a trend....our first VIVA GLAM spokesperson in 1994 was the iconic RuPaul and since then we’ve worked with musicians, actors, and influencers from all walks of life. At MAC we believe beauty is for everyone regardless of age, race or gender and we’re happy to see other brands follow suit.”

In addition to the brand’s increased support and sponsorship during Pride Month 2018, Mahon says that MAC has plans to do more with its year-round Viva Glam program, which raises funds for the fight against HIV/AIDS: Over the coming year we will announce exciting evolutions in our Viva Glam program that will allow us to deliver even greater impact from Viva Glam donations (in addition to an awesome lipstick!!).”

This article was updated on 22-Jun-2018 to correctly state the number of full-time employees at MAC: 4,200 not 42,000.



Deanna Utroske, Editor, covers beauty business news in the Americas region and publishes the weekly Indie Beauty Profile column, showcasing the inspiring work of entrepreneurs and innovative brands.

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