When Selena Gomez launched Rare Beauty back in 2020, the message was simple: break down previous notions that everyone must be perfect, and shine a light on mental health issues.
While this may have broken every budding makeup brand’s dream, brands like Fenty Beauty shared similar, groundbreaking mission statements: bolster inclusivity in the makeup industry and force all brands to do the same in the process.
Inspired by her 2020 album, Rare, Rare Beauty began with the basics: 48 foundation shades, lip balms and matte lip creams, eyebrow definers, and the icon, liquid blush. Four years later, it’s hard to imagine a more viral, innovative celebrity makeup brand that remains in stride with Fenty.
Quickly, the Rare Beauty Soft Pinch Liquid Blush became TikTok’s go-to staple product. And no one can deny there is no blush on the market that is as pigmented, easily blendable, and long-lasting as this one. Selena Gomez has proven herself a bonafide content creator with her charismatic social media posts for fun Rare Beauty launches like an under-eye brightener, an SPF-laden tinted moisturizer, and lip combos.
Not only is Rare Beauty inclusive in shade range, but the spherical shape of the top of their products is disability-friendly.
As of 2024, Rare Beauty is a $2 billion company. But what sets this company apart is their attention to detail and true dedication to bettering the world. The same year that Rare Beauty was founded, the Rare Impact Fund was also created.
What Is The Rare Impact Fund?
In a statement by Gomez on the Rare Impact Fund’s website, she states,
“The Rare Impact Fund is committed to expanding access to mental health services and education for young people everywhere. We work with a strong network of supporters and experts to bring mental health resources into educational settings to reach young people.
Because no one– regardless of age, race, gender, sexual orientation, or background - should struggle alone.”
Upon their start, the Rare Impact Fund committed to raising $100 million by 2030. Along with corporate sponsorships and donations from individuals, 1% of proceeds from all Rare Beauty sales go towards the charity as well. By 2021, they had donated over $1.2 million in grants to eight mental health institutions including Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence.
In 2021, the Rare Impact Fund launched a GoFundMe for their new Mental Health 101 initiative. According to the GoFundMe,
“Mental Health 101 advocates for more mental health in education, empowers our community, and encourages financial support for more mental health services in educational settings through the Rare Impact Fund,”
Promising to match up to $200,000 in donations, to date the GoFundMe has raised over $500,000 and has donations from less than six months ago.
How The Rare Impact Fund Works
By leveraging both Selena Gomez’s millions of social media followers and the four million people who follow Rare Beauty on Instagram, the Rare Impact Fund quickly trickles into visibility. Suddenly, fans of the brand and Gomez alike can help make a difference by donating even a few dollars in honor of their favorite actress-singer extraordinaire.
As of 2023, the Rare Impact Fund helped grantees like UCLA Friends of Semel Institute, Batyr, La Familia, Mindful Life Project, Black Teacher Project, and Trans Lifeline. According to the website, they have raised $6 million in contributions and distributed $3 million in grant support so far.
Rare Beauty and the Rare Impact Fund alone are blazing a trail for all brands: you can make a change while still distributing high-quality products — and it pays off.
There are plenty of ways to donate without sending finances.
Giving Tuesday is already a well-loved tradition for many, and this week (May 5th) is a global day of giving tailored to the scariness of the current moment.
Of course, just staying home is probably the most important thing any of us can do right now at this time, but many people are responding to an urgent call to do something more, to connect and to give. Millions of people have already given a great deal of their time and energy during COVID-19, many donating their stimulus checks, participating in mutual aid networks, fighting on the frontlines and more. This day is just another excuse to do so in whatever capacity you can.
"Giving Tuesday is always, since the beginning of it, really about human connection and strengthening communities, and that is exactly what's needed now, when there's fear and uncertainty and polarizing forces, and those things are threatening social as well as economic collapse, in addition to all the health uncertainty and fear," says Asha Curran, CEO of the Giving Tuesday movement. "It's not a fundraiser," she says. "It's a global generosity movement."
With millions of Americans out of work or dealing with financial insecurity, giving financially may not be possible. According to one survey, 42% of Americans questioned said they were having trouble paying for basic expenses like mortgage, rent, or groceries.
There are plenty of ways to donate without sending finances. The Giving Tuesday website and sites like Daily Generosity Alerts will alert you to small ways to give back. You can also text #GivingTuesday to 33777, or look into joining your local mutual aid network or using your own strengths to contribute to a social movement.
Deciding what to donate and how to give is a personal and political choice, and you don't have to donate exclusively to COVID-19-related funds. It's important to look to the people that aren't receiving what little support the government is providing. (New Sanctuary Coalition, the Partnership for Native Americans, and the Bail Project are all good options in that respect; the ACLU is also always fighting for justice). Food banks that support the most vulnerable are also valuable places to give.
It's also important to consider issues that existed before COVID-19 but that have only been exacerbated by the crisis. "The focus should be on helping the world's poorest people, not just people in the US; if you want to give in the US, you should give to effective, direct charities; if you want to maximize your impact, donating to prevent the next pandemic might be your best bet; and don't forget that the problems that plagued us before coronavirus still plague us now, and that other, non-Covid-19 charities need support, too," argues Dylan Matthews for Vox.
Plus, of course, charities often fail to endure or enact substantial change, particularly when they don't work directly with the communities they're trying to give to. Therefore, long-term community engagement is particularly important nowadays. Also, actions like voting and engaging in larger-scale campaigns to shift larger superstructures of oppression can also be very powerful. Whatever you do, make sure you're taking care of yourself too, because change starts within.