As beauty companies continue to implement more creative and innovative ways to engage with consumers, there has been a trending increase in brands that back unique causes to build and empower consumer communities. For example, earlier this year, CosmeticsDesign reported that personal care product company Dr. Bronner's launched a limited-edition advocacy campaign supporting the documentary Coextinction, which included labels that listed four ways consumers could help prevent the extinction of Southern Resident Orca whales. This effort highlighted the brand's commitment to social justice, sustainability, and progressive business practices.
Like Dr. Bronner's, cosmetics company Bulletproof Cosmetics has also established a brand that focuses on raising awareness and providing resources and support to consumers impacted by a severe issue. Founders Elly Seddon and Cera Neima-Stewart joined together to share their experience and insights with women who have faced domestic violence through the Bulletproof Foundation.
The National Domestic Violence Hotline reports that "nearly 3 in 10 women (29%) in the US have experienced rape, physical violence, and/or stalking by a partner and reported it having a related impact on their functioning." To support these women, Bulletproof Cosmetics' Bulletproof Foundation offers educational and legal resources, as well as access to a community of people impacted by domestic violence.
According to the Bulletproof Cosmetics website, the Foundation's mission is to "reduce the occurrences of harm, violence or other abuse against women…by empowering women with tools and confidence."
To learn more about Bulletproof Cosmetics and the Bulletproof Foundation, including why the brand chose to back this cause, how supporting this cause has benefitted organizations serving victims of domestic violence, and plans for the brand and its Foundation, CosmeticsDesign spoke to Seddon and Neima-Stewart for their insights.
CDU: Can you explain more about the Bulletproof Foundation and its objectives?
Bulletproof Cosmetics (BC): The Bulletproof Foundation is the heart and soul of Bulletproof Cosmetics, dedicated to empowering women facing harm. Its primary objective is facilitating access to justice for women in harm by connecting them with critical resources and building a supportive community.
There are a multitude of existing legal and other critical resources in support of women in domestic violence situations. Still, these resources are often difficult to find, access, and navigate. Bulletproof Foundation will partner with these programs to establish a database of all of these resources in various local communities across Canada, maintain this database continuously, accept applications from women who apply to the program, connect those women with the appropriate resources within their own communities, and see their care through the use of the resource.
The Foundation also aims to raise awareness about abuse, identify early stages, and take proactive action against potential harm, both physically and emotionally.
CDU: Why did the company choose this cause in particular? How does it tie in with the brand and its positioning?
BC: Bulletproof Cosmetics was born out of this cause. The founders, Elly and Cera, have personal experiences that drove them to address the challenges women face in navigating the legal system during times of distress.
Given their personal experiences and one of the founder's legal background, they established the Foundation to mitigate those issues for other women. The cause aligns with the brand's core values of empowerment, resilience, and strength. It reflects the brand's commitment to empowering women through cosmetic products that will help them feel as good as they look and provide tangible support in the face of adversity.
The company and the Foundation are called "Bulletproof" because they help women feel bulletproof and resilient in the face of harm. Our history and mission position Bulletproof as a brand with a purpose, going beyond beauty to make a meaningful impact in women's lives.
CDU: How has supporting this cause benefitted organizations working in this area?
BC: The work of the Foundation is critical to enabling other organizations working in this area to maximize their impact. Often, women who need legal support and community resources the most are unable to find those resources and then unable to access them. Bulletproof Foundation has bridged a gap by aligning itself with local community resources and the broader community of women through its connection with Bulletproof Cosmetics, a trendy cosmetics brand that most women will learn about.
Bulletproof's popularity as a cosmetics brand will cause women to be familiar with its purpose and mission. Once women familiar with Bulletproof's mission reach out for support, Bulletproof Foundation will work with community organizations in this area to provide them with the tailored support they require.
The Bulletproof Foundation's work enables community organizations to reach more women in need, offer legal assistance, and create awareness about abuse. The collaboration has strengthened the collective effort to reduce harm and violence against women.
CDU: How has it served to help Bulletproof? And specifically, how has it helped to build the Bulletproof community?
BC: Supporting this cause has reinforced Bulletproof Cosmetics' commitment to social responsibility and fostered a strong sense of community among its customers. By aligning with a cause that resonates deeply with the brand's values, Bulletproof has attracted like-minded individuals interested in quality cosmetics and making a positive impact. This shared mission has helped build a community that champions empowerment, confidence, and support for women facing adversity.
CDU: Are Bulletproof customers getting involved with the cause on a personal level?
BC: Bulletproof customers are actively involved with the cause on a personal level. They contribute directly to the Bulletproof Foundation through their purchases, knowing that a portion of their investment goes toward empowering women in abusive situations.
This personal connection creates a sense of shared purpose among customers, fostering a community that stands together in solidarity. Further, some Bulletproof customers have opened up publicly about their own stories of abuse and are further growing the community of support in that fashion.
CDU: How do you see Bulletproof's support of this cause evolving in the future? And what will this do to help build your community further?
BC: Bulletproof envisions launching the Bulletproof Foundation in local communities across Canada and the US. The brand plans to establish and expand its partnerships with educational resources and legal support networks and continue fostering a caring community.
The goal is to provide immediate assistance and create a lasting impact, reducing harm and empowering women to feel Bulletproof in every aspect of their lives. This sustained support will further solidify the Bulletproof community as a force for positive change.