What do we have to do with that?
Today (Feb 11th) is Internationship Women and Girls in Science Day, which recognizes the critical role women play in science and technology. What do we have to do with that? You know us as a beauty / self-care brand, and we’re all about that space. But behind the brand category is the team that created our customization algorithms, and continues to formulate and innovate the science behind our (your) one-of-a-kind products. This team is made up of chemists, developers, engineers, and data analysts, many of whom are women.
So the field of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) feels like an essential part of our DNA. Unfortunately, this space as a whole is severely lacking the presence of women + girls. In fact, women (who make up more than half of the US workforce) make up only a small percentage of the STEM workforce. More details:
- Of those who work within the STEM field, only 24% are women
- 12.2% of board members in the STEM industry are female (that’s roughly 1/10!)
- While women in general are underrepresented in STEM, women of Color are even more so — only 1 out of 10 employed scientists + engineers are Black or Latina women
These are better statistics than they would have been in the past, but not at all enough. Huge disparities in the fields of engineering, computer science, and the physical sciences (like physics and chemistry) are still very much present. We hate to see it. So we’ve made it our mission to do something about it.
The perfect partner in crime? Girlstart.
Girlstart is an organization that empowers girls in STEM by increasing their interest and engagement in those subjects at an early age with a full suite of STEM education programs for K-12 girls. In their own words, they believe that “more girls with more ideas will create solutions that will benefit us all.” We couldn’t agree more. So we’re partnering with them to move closer towards our shared goals. We spoke to Katelyn Wamsted, Chief Program Officer of Girlstart re: our new relationship.
“Function of Beauty is doing more than changing the face of beauty. Their support of Girlstart will help to provide girls with the opportunity to be brave, creative, and curious this summer as they learn about different STEM careers, engage with role models, and experience hands-on education Together, we have a chance to change young girls’ perspectives of what it means to be a woman in STEM. 24% of the science, technology, engineering, and math workforce are women, and only 5% are women of color. Function of Beauty truly understands the importance of equity and value of a diverse workforce. Girlstart is excited for the opportunity to showcase that STEM is everywhere, especially in the beauty industry.”
You could say we have a love/love relationship. Our co-founder and COO Josh Maciejewski spoke about his relationship with our social mission and partnership.
“NASA recently announced that one of my good childhood friends is going to be a flight director for manned lunar missions. She’s worked extremely hard to go from cornfields to coordinating one of the world’s most complex technological endeavors ever undertaken. That’s why I’m such a strong proponent of programs like Girlstart. It will never be easy to do what these women are doing – but that’s what makes it so awesome. I want my daughters to share that drive and passion for STEM.”
Our partnership will start with initiatives that we’re keeping up our (lab coat) sleeves for the time being, but you’ll start to see roll out this year. Look out for more 😉 What excites us most is that we’re committed to making this a long-term partnership, and our future plans stretch for years to come.