Mayor Johnson Criticized For $30,000 Campaign Spending On Grooming Services

Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson is facing criticism after reports revealed he spent over $30,000 of his campaign funds on hair and makeup in the last year. The Chicago Sun-Times uncovered these expenses, which were funded by donations to the Friends of Brandon Johnson campaign.

Documents from the election board show that most of the funds went to Denise Milloy, a “skincare enthusiast” who owns Makeup Majic. Milloy received more than 30 payments between 2023 and 2024, totaling nearly $30,000.

These payments were categorized under “Candidate makeup for TV,” “Candidate makeup for debate,” or “Candidate makeup,” and later reclassified as “event expenses” once Johnson became mayor. Campaign spokesman Bill Neidhardt justified the spending, saying, “The mayor does not spend taxpayer dollars in preparation for the many public appearances and events he attends every day.” He emphasized that the funds support black and women-owned businesses.

Another $4,000 was directed to Anthony Jones Salon in Palatine, Illinois, marked as “event expenses.” The salon’s owner, however, stated he never received the payment. Neidhardt clarified that this was a filing mistake, and the funds were meant for AJ Styles Barber & Beauty Salon in West Chicago.

In contrast, former Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s campaign spent only $2,000 on similar grooming services during her re-election bid last year.

These revelations have sparked a debate over the appropriateness of using campaign funds for personal grooming, particularly at a time when many citizens face economic hardships. Critics argue that such spending is excessive and question the priorities of the mayor’s administration.