Mary Dillon, CEO of Ulta Beauty

Published on03 MAY 2021

In this episode of Talks at GS, Mary Dillon, CEO of Ulta Beauty, discusses leading Ulta Beauty, her strategy to grow the business both in stores and online, and perspective on the future of the beauty sector and broader retail industry.

On leading Ulta Beauty: “I literally focused on just a few things: strategy, team, execution and culture…I realized at the very beginning that I needed to get people to work around me that could bring this business to life…I didn't go in there saying I have to just throw out the team and start again. But I knew that I functioned best with a group of people working for me that have functional expertise.  Certainly, I'm an expert in certain things, but not everything. And I'm humble enough to say that.”

On Ulta Beauty’s sustainability efforts: “Packaging now is an area that we're trying to go after ourselves, as well as the industry. We just recently started a pilot with a company called Loop, and its reusable containers for beauty product toiletries, a small subset that we're going to try with them, where it gets delivered to somebody's home, they use it, and then when they're done, they put it back out, Loop takes it and cleans it, and we recycle and use the packaging. So that's just an early stage. On the other hand, we're also ourselves committing to the fact that by 2025, 50% of the packaging in our stores will be all either made from reusable, recyclable materials or recyclable in and of themselves, including our entire private label collection.”

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The episode was recorded on April 20, 2021.

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