Grace Ray is the new CEO of Milani Cosmetics

By Deanna Utroske

- Last updated on GMT

Grace Ray is the new CEO of Milani Cosmetics
In June, the private equity firm Gryphon Investors invested heavily in the masstige beauty brand. Now Grace Ray, a cosmetics and personal care industry leader, has accepted the board’s invitation to join the company as CEO at the end of the month. And she already has clear plans to grow the brand exponentially.

Grace Ray was, most previously, CEO of Living Proof (and before that the company’s chief marketing officer).

“I am thrilled to have the opportunity to guide this fast-growing indie brand and build upon its already proven successes and reputation for creating high-quality makeup for discerning multi-cultural consumers,”​ Ray says in a media release about her new role.

As she sees it, “Milani is smartly positioned in the fast-growing 'masstige' category where we can offer high quality and good value without having to compromise on either.”​ And, Ray believes that “this is exactly what consumers want today.”

“It is important that we continue to introduce new innovations, enforce our strong retailer relationships, invest in consumer pull, and grow our international markets,”​ says Ray, outlining her plans for the brand.

Upward trajectory

At Living Proof, Ray is credited with overseeing the company’s growth and eventual sale to Unilever. (Read more about that acquisition here on Cosmetics Design​.) And it looks as if she’s been brought in to do something similar with Milani.

“We are delighted to have Grace join Milani Cosmetics as CEO,”​ Michelle Taylor tells the press. Taylor has been the brand’s interim CEO since Gryphon’s majority investment and will at the end of July take over as chairman of the board.

“[Ray] brings extraordinary experience to the team and has a successful track record of stewarding private companies towards achieving their growth potential and transforming them into highly desirable brands,”​ says Taylor. “Her background with both cosmetics and beauty businesses gives her an important knowledge base of the levers required for growth in a modern makeup brand.”



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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