Multicultural Beauty
Industry Elite Awards

MCBI proudly rewards the excellence of the individuals, brands and companies that support the U.S. Multicultural Beauty segment. Nominated and selected from throughout the vertical, the following have been recognized for their outstanding professional contributions. Congratulations to each nominee and honoree. Keep representing with excellence! 

The 2023 awards is sponsored by Ultra Standard Distributors, the leading distributor of multicultural beauty products in the U.S. With over 70,000 skus, the company has a proven track record of building brands and recognizing opportunities within the ever-expanding beauty category. From small to midsize beauty supply shops to catering to major retail chains, Ultra Standard serves 35,000+ store doors nationwide, across Africa, Europe and the Middle East.

Social Media Influencers of the Year 

Ahnesti Monet McMichael

Across platforms, @monetmcmichael has amassed an audience of over 3 million followers. The Puerto Rican creator’s social media showcases makeup tips from beauty brands throughout the industry.


A member of the Sephora Squad, @NaturallyNish has delivered eye-catching content for multicultural beauty  brands, most frequently representing brands made for Black and Brown consumers.

Ari AKA @thekinkycurl

Ari, aka @thekinkycurl, collaborates with numerous natural hair care and styling tools brands conducting demonstrations and presenting at events. She educates her fans about some of the most popular multicultural hair products made specifically for thick, textured hair.


With over 1 million followers, @Golloria explores makeup and skincare for deeply-melenated skin tones. She proudly represents and advocates for dark-skin beauties by collaborating with cosmetic and skincare brands throughout the beauty industry.

Sean Garrette

Licensed esthetician, @seangarrette is a highly sought-after ambassador, educator and influencer for some of the leading skincare brands in both multicultural and general market segments.

Arshia Moorjani

@Arshiamoorjani is a creator who slays on social media with content involving lifestyle, beauty product reviews and tips, mostly curated for Brown beauties. She showcases hair care, cosmetics, nail care, and fragrances throughout the beauty industry.

Jewellianna Palencia

As a well-known Afro-Latina creator, @jewejewebee consistently shows up among beauty and lifestyle media lists of Latina beauty influencers to know. Her engaging content mostly focuses on naturally curly hair, beauty and fitness.

Brand Ambassadors Of The Year

Telicia Favre

Nominated and chosen by AFAM, Telecia Farve aka @TheCurlMother, represented the company’s Hawaiian Silky brand throughout 2023. The brand’s leadership describes her a go-getter that will not settle for anything less than perfection. Her expansive knowledge and perseverance have led to the growth of the Hawaiian Silky brand.

Briaunna Kilgore

Nominated and chosen by Crème of Nature, “@trackheadbree,” represented the company as a champion Brand Ambassador by setting a gold standard for influencer partnerships and collaborations. From meticulously curated unboxings, insightful and fun product reviews, to hosting live activations, Bri’s contributions to Crème of Nature have been nothing short of exceptional.

Sales Professional of the Year

Demar Roberts

In his executive role at First Choice Sales & Marketing, one of the most respected ethnic/multicultural sales broker firms in the U.S., Demar leads category management for multicultural haircare at Walmart. He is a trusted resource brands turn to for entry into Walmart’s Multicultural Hair care category. He’s also the trusted voice that retail buyers listen to for guidance and information about the segment.

Marketing Professional of the Year

Taydra Mitchell Jackson

As a 25+ year veteran of the beauty industry, Taydra has spent her career affecting change for underserved consumers and audiences in her executive roles at the world’s largest and most recognized corporations. She serves as Chief Marketing Officer for Sundial Brands, makers of Shea Moisture, the largest multicultural beauty care brand in the world, and is responsible for innovation and new product development, equity and engagement and overall marketing strategy for the brands eight categories plus Shea Moisture Men, Madam by MCJW and Mele. Her work empowers Black up and coming entrepreneurs by providing grants and support for the next wave of budding business owners.

Excellence in  Beauty Journalism

Taylor Bryant

Taylor is the editor of Beauty Independent, having joined the company’s editorial staff during the Covid pandemic. Bryant started her writing career at Refinery29, where she was beauty news editor, then went on to have her coverage of beauty products featured in Glamour, Teen Vogue, Vox, Billboard, Fashionista and Beauty Independent. In addition to passion for writing about sustainability and clean beauty, she has kept the multicultural segment in the news with editorials about Black beauty brands, their founders, and special interests. She has been an advocate for The C.R.O.W.N. Act.

Excellence In Product Development & Manufacturing

Robyn Watkins

Robyn Watkins is founder & CEO of Holistic Beauty Group. She is one of the defining developers of the beauty industry, charting the path to what the future of a better beauty industry looks like. She leads a team in best-in-class formulations and practices. Robyn is a strategic partner to her clients and has a deep understanding of the product lifecycle, and what consumers want and need. HBG’s impressive client roster includes, Smashbox, Pattern Beauty, Bread Beauty, Estee Lauder, Oui the People, EpiLogic and more.

Cornell McBride, CEO, McBride Research Labs

As CEO of McBride Research Labs, Cornell’s influence and impact reach far beyond the realm of product development. He is a multifaceted industry leader, celebrated through numerous local and national awards. Under Cornell’s visionary leadership, Design Essentials, a subsidiary of MRL, has expanded its presence across the
U.S., and its global footprint makes significant contributions to the African economy and society. From hairstylists to chemists, distributors to warehouse workers, the ripple effect of his leadership as a job creator is felt far and wide.

Akuba Torvikey

As Director of Product Development at Beach House Group, the brand incubator for Pattern Beauty. Akuba has a 20 year history in the ethnic/multicultural beauty space, having developed beauty products for leading brands and, currently, for Pattern Beauty. At Pattern, she’s garnered recognition for developing the Oprah’s Beauty O-Ward, “Transition Mask,” and Pop Sugar Beauty Awards for Pattern’s Styling Custard. In 2020, Akuba launched the Breedlove Beauty Wellness Incubator, where cohort members engaged in a 9-week intensive
learning and mentorship program on the development and launch of DTC beauty products.

mSEED Group, Contract Packaging & Product Development

A multifaceted contract packaging and product development firm, mSEED pairs production with marketing services for indie beauty brands. Started by beauty industry veterans Anthony Standifer and Erica Douglas nine years ago, the firm has helped launch over 150 brands, many of them from underrepresented entrepreneurs of color. They specialize in custom formulas for emerging companies in the space. The company extends its services into marketing consulting to help newer entrepreneurs optimize the success of their launch
and the expansion of their brands. MSEED provides small and large runs for indie brands.

Hair Care Brand of the Year

Camille Rose

Identified among the top selling multicultural haircare brands, Camille Rose has expansive distribution throughout beauty aisles in mass, grocery, drug, beauty supply and specialty stores across the U.S., and has globally expanded to the Caribbean and throughout Africa. The brand experiences consistent year-over-year growth, and the company’s most recent media efforts include signing celebrity ambassadors, Latto and Victoria Monet.

Cosmetics Brand of the Year

Luna Magic

One of the newest brands to launch in mass retail, Luna Magic has made its mark in the cosmetics space. The company wasfounded by Afro-Latina sisters, Mabel and Sharia Frias. The dynamic duo made an appearance on ABC’s Shark Tank, walking away with a deal from powerhouse Shark, Barbara Corcoran. Following a successful launch in Walmart stores, the brand is holding its own with increased distribution in Walmart, entry into CVS and Target stores within the past year, and a multi-ethnic following of consumers who are becoming loyalists to the brand’s wide portfolio of cosmetic products including lashes and makeup palettes in bold, bright hues that reflect their LatinX culture. Luna Magic participates in beauty events around the country and the founders have created business conferences that award grants and mentorship to Latina entrepreneurs.

Skin & Body Care Brand of the Year


Topicals was named the fastest growing skin care brand in Sephora stores, and the founder, Olamide Olowe, is the youngest Black CEO to raise over $10 million in venture capital to grow her brand. According to Sephora, last year, one Topicals product was sold every minute. The cruelty-free brand winning editors’ choice awards is for consumers struggling with hyperpigmentation, acne and other chronic skin conditions, and is a Gen Z favorite.

Men’s Grooming Brand of the Year

Scotch Porter

Recently securing $11 million in Series B Round funding, with multi-purpose, better-for-you grooming aids for face, beard and hair, Scotch Porter expands into 2,300 doors at CVS, 1,900 Walmart stores and 600 Target stores. The brand is founded and led by Calvin Quallis.

Best Styling Tools & Accessories

Pattern Beauty Blow Dryer

In 2023, Pattern complimented its wet goods collection with an electric blow dryer, specifically designed to help better dry and manage curly and coily textured hair. Sold in Ulta stores nationwide, the dryer has already garnered 5 national beauty awards for its design and performance.

Product of the Year


Mielle’s Rosemary Mint Scalp & Hair Strengthening Oil is the #1 SKU sold into retail and beauty supply by the largest multicultural beauty distributors. In 2023, it sold more than any other product in the entire multicultural haircare category. The product became a social media viral sensation, resulting in products flying off retail shelves for months. Concurrently, it sparked a national conversation about products that specifically address the needs of Black & Brown consumers being “discovered” outside of the community.

Excellence in Multicultural Beauty Business Investment

Fearless Fund

Built by women of color, Fearless Fund invests in women of color-led businesses seeking pre-seed, seed level or series A financing. With a mission to bridge the gap in venture capital funding for women of color founders building scalable, growth aggressive companies, it has invested in beauty brands such as, Range Beauty, AMP Beauty LA, Brown Girl Jane, Hairbrella, Live Tinted and Oui The People.


Ulta Muse Accelerator

The nation’s largest beauty retailer hosts cohorts consisting of early-stage BIPOC beauty brands spanning body care, fragrance, skincare, nail, and hair categories. Participants engage in a 10-week journey featuring a robust curriculum, mentorship and funding to fuel growth and prepare for retail distribution.

Black Girl Ventures/JCPenney/Rare Beauty Brands National Beauty Pitch Competition

This contest invites Black and Brown women-identifying founders in the beauty industry to compete for a monetary grand prize, retail distribution, mentorship with key executives at Rare Beauty Brands, additional capital from crowdfunding, and more. The 2023 winner will be awarded shelf space, nationwide, in JCPenney stores and online.


Mi Haus

Created by Mielle Organics, Mi-Haus presented an elevated experience to visitors full of social media-worthy moments. The “house party,” complete with demo stations, a queen’s throne, free samples, celebrity appearances, and more, lived inside EssenceFest, and had to temporarily close due to the overwhelming number of visitors trying to participate. The aesthetic also included Mi Closet, a design imagined with a custom-built island and beauty station. Outdoors, the Mi Haus exerience included a glam basketball hoop honoring its partnership with the WNBA and participation in the All-Star games.

Excellence In

Scotch Porter

Scotch Porter contributes 2% of its online US sales, more than 1% of its total sales to The Scotch Porter Impact Fund, empowering communities through organizations including, America On Tech and Manifest Works. The company strategically works with partners who are providing economic mobility opportunities to underserved
communities, including MAKE USA, a packaging company that hires formerly incarcerated individuals to fight against recidivism. With nearly 70,000 lives impacted in less than a year of its existence, the Scotch Porter Impact Fund has notably supported Hurricane Ian Relief efforts, the NJ Reentry Corporation, and partnered with the Kelly
Clarkson Show to support Omaha Home For Boys as they help youth, young adults and families overcome obstacles in order to reach their full potential.

Excellence in Multicultural Beauty Retail Growth 


Established as the early retail leader in bringing diversity and inclusion to the beauty and personal care aisles, Target models intentionality and effectiveness in expanding and promoting BIPOC beauty brands. 


Diversifying the shelf with a combination of newer Black & LatinX entrepreneurial and tried and true legacy brands, Walmart’s hair, skin and cosmetic aisles feature affordable products that address the needs of their ethnically diverse consumer base. Variety, price and shopping convenience have made Walmart a multicultural beauty destination.


Being diligent to fulfill their commitment to the 15 Percent Pledge, Sephora is driving change in the beauty industry in the representation of their vendors and staff, in the products they offer and the way they service clients of color. Sephora dedicates a minimum of 15% of its shelf space to Black-owned beauty brands and is invested in the promotion of those brands.

Ulta Beauty

Ulta’s commitments to further champion DE&I so their guests, associates, brand partners and communities feel connected, results in a keen focus on BIPOC brand amplification and support, assortment growth, and intentionality with guest and associate experiences. In 2022, their commitments total a planned investment of $50 million, doubling that of 2021.

J.C. Penney & Thirteen Lune Partnership

Joining other retailers in curating beauty selections, J.C. Penney Beauty partners with Thirteen Lune as their flagship brand, with a nationwide store rollout beginning in Fall 2022 and an expansion continuing through 2023. More than 60 beauty brands created by founders of color and allies across skincare, hair and other beauty-oriented product categories will be available in-store and online. 

Nomination Guidelines and Criteria

Nominees for the 2023 Multicultural Beauty Insider Industry Elite Awards were submitted October 6 –27, 2023, and voted upon by a panel of judges who are beauty industry strategists, consultants and media professionals. Nominations are accepted through open nominations and nominations by MCBI’s editor. Nominees are brands and professionals representing the U.S. retail multicultural beauty segment. Direct-to Consumer only brands do not qualify. Criteria for each nomination varies, by category. To learn more about the criteria for each category, or to receive information about the 2024 awards, email your inquiry to: [email protected]. Be an INSIDER and join the mailing list on this website.

2023 Judges

Dwan V. White
Editor, MCBI
Patricia Valera
Founder & CEO, Beautybrandr
Teneya Gholston
Founder & CEO, Gholston Strategy Group
Camille Wright
Principal, Prim PR & Marketing

Data Resources

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