Clean Beauty gets an infusion of capital

By Deanna Utroske

- Last updated on GMT

© Getty Images \ (eldadcarin)
© Getty Images \ (eldadcarin)

Related tags clean beauty capital Investment R&D

This month, the prestige clean color cosmetics brand Ilia Beauty announced a Series B funding round, led by Sandbridge and including the New York City – based firm Silas. The investment enables Ilia to, among other things, further finance product development and R&D initiatives.

Sasha Plavsic founded Ilia Beauty in 2011 and continues to be a key leader of the business in her role as Creative Director. In comments to the press about this month’s investment deal, Plavsic emphasizes that, “This capital and partnerships will ensure we can continue to innovate and invest heavily in R&D.”

“I strive to offer the highest-performance clean products powered by high active levels of skincare ingredients,” ​says Plavsic, adding, “These innovative formulas are unlike anything out there on the market.”

Currently the brand, which retails in 30 countries and some 600 doors, sells color products for eyes, lips, and complexion, as well as multifunctional color products like the Ilia Multistick for cheeks and lips, which comes in 8 shades.

Investing in a global consumer brand

 ​Sandbridge and Silas Capital have similar but somewhat different investment strategies. And both currently have only one other beauty brand in their respective portfolios. Sandbridge Capital is invested in the skin care brand Youth to the People. And as of August 2019, Silas Capital has invested millions of dollars in Herbivore, as Cosmetics Design reported​. 

Like Plavsic, current Ilia CEO Lynda Berkowitz (who’s been with the brand since 2016) welcomes the investors’ backing “I am thrilled to partner with Ken Suslow and the Sandbridge team, as well as work together again with Brian Thorne at Silas Capital,”​ she says. And, “Their investment and industry expertise will greatly support pronounced growth opportunities for ILIA.”

As for the investors, Ken Suslow, Sandbridge Founding Managing Partner, calls Ilia “a very special brand that is authentically and transparently true to its clean purpose driven mission, thoughtfully unifying prestige and clean beauty in support of its uniquely elevated brand.”

Silas Capital first partnered with Ilia in late 2018 and at the time cited Berkowitz’s leadership as a key reason the firm saw growth potential. Now, Brian Thorne, a Partner at the firm tells the press, “We're extremely proud of the success that Sasha, Lynda, and the ILIA team have achieved over the past year since our initial investment, and even more thrilled about what's to come for this truly innovative brand. With additional growth capital, a strong new partnership with Sandbridge and the continued support of our firm, we intend to further solidify ILIA's position as the category leader in clean color cosmetics.”



Deanna Utroske is a leading voice in the cosmetics and personal care industry as well as in the indie beauty movement. As Editor of, she writes daily news about the business of beauty in the Americas region and regularly produces video interviews with cosmetics, fragrance, personal care, and packaging experts as well as with indie brand founders.
Deanna will be speaking next at the Uplink Live event in LA this month​ (save 10% on tickets with code: CD10) and at Green Beauty Night in February​.

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