Bye, Shea

In case you haven't been on social media all week, haven't seen a natural in days and live under a rock- Shea Moisture just lost the support of the black community. Why? They chose to feature four white women and one racially ambiguous woman with long, loose curls to represent their brand in a major commercial. The brand we carried. As a natural, I've been using Shea Moisture products for years, as have many of my natural sisters. When stopped on the streets and asked about my product line, I immediately give them free marketing and lift up Shea Moisture products as the holy grail. Shea Moisture prides themselves on being a family owned company, grandma Sofi Tucker started these recipes and sold them in a marketplace in Sierra Leone, making us feel not only connected to MeMaw Tucker but to our African roots. Natural products for natural haired women, we made this line what it is today. We, black women of all hair types and shades, hailed their brand and supported their products before they made it to the big leagues like Target, we were there. We were with them from small ethnic hair aisles to right up there next to L'Oréal and Pantene. We put our coins in their pockets and made them as big as they are. But instead of being "For Us, By Us." They dropped this bomb on us that basically screamed out "For Them, By Us, Built on You" accompanied by a huge stinging slap in the face. To have white women talk about their "natural hair" speaking of personal choices such as hair dye was insulting. We feel betrayed. To not only feature white women's stories in their commercial for a natural hair brand marketed to black women but to be excluded from the commercial completely, we were shown that we are not valued by their brand. If we are not valued, neither are our dollars. This is a call to action, if you have unopened products by Shea Moisture- return them. If you are an avid user of their products- stop supporting them. Show them the power of black dollars and see if the consumers they just marketed to will pick up the slack. We will let them know that their "apology" and promise to discontinue the commercial is NOT ENOUGH. We got the message in their choice of representation and we are pissed. Here are five black owned natural hair care lines you can support instead: 

1. OYIN HANDMADE (Instagram: oyinhandmade)

 2. TALIAH WAAJID (Instagram: taliahwaajidbrand)

3. QHEMET BIOLOGICS (Instagram: qhemetbiologics)

4. MISS JESSIE’S (Instagram: angiedivina)

5. TGIN - THANK GOD IT’S NATURAL (Instagram: tginatural

 

Let us know how these products have worked for you!

 

Article by Olivia Steadman-Oladipo  

Twitter: @jawnlegend_