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Aveda Corporation is a company founded by Horst Rechelbacher, now owned by Estée Lauder Companies, headquartered in the Minneapolis suburb of Blaine, Minnesota. Aveda manufactures skin care, cosmetics, perfume, hair care products, and trains students in cosmetology, massage and esthiology at the Aveda Institutes in Minneapolis, New York City, Washington, DC, Vancouver, Calgary, Orlando, Toronto and many other cities.


  • History 1
  • Business 2
  • Controversy 3
  • Environment 4
  • References 5
  • Further reading 6


Aveda product

Aveda (pronounced ah-vay-da) was founded by Horst Rechelbacher in 1978. In 1970, Horst, on a trip to India, was introduced to the science of Ayurveda (the Hindu traditional holistic system of medicine and surgery from India), and suddenly his vision for his company (thus the name Aveda) was born. Horst formulated the first product, a clove shampoo, in his kitchen sink.[1] Today Aveda is part of Estée Lauder Companies Inc., based in New York. Rechelbacher sold Aveda to Estée Lauder in 1997 for $300 million,[2] although Aveda continues to be run as a separate entity. Upon selling the product to Estee Lauder Companies Inc., Horst also sold off the chain of salons to his successor, David Wagner. The salons formally known as Horst and Friends was renamed Juut Salonspa. In 2004, Aveda was awarded the prestigious Corporate Achievement Award at the Smithsonian Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum.[3] Aveda was one of the first beauty companies to endorse a set of principles designed to encourage greater environmental responsibility in business, known as The Ceres Principles. According to the company's website, "Aveda" is Sanskrit for "all knowledge". Ironically "Aveda" written phonetically as "अवेद", translates to "non-vedic" (or म्लेच्छ).


Aveda sells products ranging from skin care to hair care which are as organic as possible. Aveda also maintains a variety of partnerships with salons and spas that use their products. Many of these locations also offer treatments certified by Aveda. Aveda offers training to employees of its affiliated salons and spas. They also run many institutes for cosmetology education.

Aveda has an ongoing partnership with the Yawanawa Tribe of the Brazilian Amazon. This tribe uses a red seed called "uruku", derived from the Urukum Palm, to paint their bodies for different rituals. This partnership has helped to sustain the Yawanawa Tribe while helping to bring attention to the plight of their disappearing rainforest home.

In 1995, Aveda partnered with a community collective that the babassu nut breakers of the Brazilian Amazon had formed to obtain certified organic babassu for use in the creation of a foaming cleansing element known as "babassu betaine". Aveda has financed the construction of and training for a babassu processing facility, a soap-making facility and a paper press for processing babassu fibers. Aveda does not test their products on animals, but rather on willing human participants.


In 2009 Aveda (as a subsidiary of Estée Lauder Companies Inc.), was included by the Palestinian rights organization, the BDS Campaign, as one of the "Top Ten Brands to Boycott This Christmas". The reason the Estée Lauder Company and its brands were singled out was because, "This company’s chairman Ronald Lauder is also the chairman of the Jewish National Fund..." [4]

In 2011 Aveda was slammed at Park City, Utah during the Evolution of Women in Social Media conference, also known as evo'11, for announcing their no payment policy for bloggers reviewing their products.[5]

Aveda was also criticized for using the brand name "Indigenous", as a denigration of indigenous peoples. They have since renamed the product line.[6][7]


Aveda set an industry precedent by introducing an aerosol hairspray that has a net-zero impact on the Earth's climate and an award-winning low 35% VOC formula. Through a partnership with NativeEnergy, an organization that supports and builds renewable energy products, Aveda has helped fund wind turbines. Aveda claims that it purchases enough wind energy to power its primary manufacturing facility.[8] The company "sends sustainability surveys to publications to help decide where to place its ads".[9]


  1. ^ "Aveda Corporation - Company History". Archived from the original on 29 April 2010. Retrieved 2010-05-02. 
  2. ^ Canepoopdy, Dana. Canedy, Dana (November 20, 1997). "Estee Lauder Is Acquiring Maker of Natural Cosmetics". New York Times. Retrieved January 25, 2008. 
  3. ^ "Aveda Cosmetics". Retrieved 2010-05-02. 
  4. ^ """USACBI: "Top Ten Brands to Boycott this Christmas. 2009-12-03. Retrieved 2014-05-15. 
  5. ^ "Bloggers slam Aveda over its non-payment policy | Articles | Home". 2011-07-13. Retrieved 2014-05-15. 
  6. ^ "Indigenous/Traditional Knowledge & Intellectual Property - Examples of Use and Misuse of Indigenous Knowledge". Retrieved 2014-05-15. 
  7. ^ "Indigenous Rock Star Wins Lawsuit Against Aveda". Cultural Survival. Retrieved 2014-05-15. 
  8. ^ Newman, Eric. "Aveda Thinks You Would Look Better in Green". Brand Week. Archived from the original on January 22, 2008. Retrieved January 25, 2008. 
  9. ^ Story, Louise. Story, Louise (October 25, 2006). "The Hidden Life of Paper and Its Impact on the Environment". New York Times. Retrieved January 25, 2008. 

Further reading

  • The New York Times, August 27, 2000 – Taking the Sweet Smell of Success To a New Level of Literalness
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