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P&G Beauty Acquires Textured Hair Brand Mielle Organics

The brand’s co-founders, husband-and-wife duo Monique and Melvin Rodriguez, will retain their roles as chief executive officer and chief operating officer, respectively.
Mielle Organics founder Monique Rodriguez launched the now multi-million-dollar hair and beauty brand from her basement.
Mielle Organics founder Monique Rodriguez launched the now multi-million-dollar hair and beauty brand from her basement.

Mielle Organics, the textured hair care brand founded in 2014 by husband and wife team Monique and Melvin Rodriguez, has been acquired by P&G Beauty, a division of the consumer packaged goods conglomerate, for an undisclosed sum.

The brand will continue to be led by the Rodriguezes, and will operate as an independent subsidiary of P&G Beauty, the companies said in a press release.

As part of the arrangement, both Mielle and P&G each pledged $10 million to Mielle Cares, a non-profit aimed at providing resources and support to advance education and economic opportunities in Black and Brown communities.

In a video post on her personal Instagram account, Monique Rodriguez, who launched the label with formulas she created in her kitchen and touted on social media, addressed some of the concerns that have plagued other Black-owned brands after being acquired by white-run conglomerates.

“I feel that every Black entrepreneur should be able to grow and scale their business … without being labelled a ‘sellout,’” Rodriguez said in the five-minute video, adding that there were no plans to change product formulations and that the brand would “continue to to provide opportunities for Black leadership in our company.”

In 2014, Rodriguez, a Chicago native and registered nurse, scraped up $10,000 of her own money and hired a local chemist to help her craft Mielle’s first product, a blend of scalp-stimulating peppermint and amino-acid rich almond oil. A version of the same product made headlines last month when several white TikTok influencers, most notably Alix Earle, named it a must-have — sparking online debate about white creators appropriating Black beauty regimens as well as spurring concerns that the company would change the formula to appeal to more white consumers.

Today, Mielle — known for its unique formulations of vitamins and niche ingredients, like sea moss and tulsi — is carried in more than 100,000 stores, including Ulta Beauty, Target and Sally Beauty. In 2021, Rodriguez became one of fewer than 100 Black female founders to secure at least $1 million in funding for their companies, when she landed a reported $100 million investment from Berkshire Partners. The firm previously invested in beauty companies Bare Escentuals and Coty as well as jewellery label Kendra Scott.

With this acquisition, Mielle joins other popular textured hair care brands like Shea Moisture and Carol’s Daughter, which were snapped up by CPG and beauty conglomerates Unilever and L’Oréal in 2017 and 2014, respectively. For its part, P&G has been on a beauty buying spree, having acquired skin care line Farmacy and hair care brand Ouai in 2021 and Tula Skincare in 2022. Mielle’s acquisition by P&G is pending regulatory approval.

Learn more:

How Mielle Organics Is Rewriting the Playbook for Black Hair Brands

After securing a nine-figure investment in her business, Monique Rodriguez is onto her next challenge: scale while staying Black-owned.

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