The ever so popular Shea Moisture is under fire for releasing new advertisements centered around ‘Hair Hate”. Their primary customer base is upset for not their products but for their advertisement that seems to ‘white wash’ this ethnic hair brand and many feel as if ‘certain hair types‘ are being ignored.
Here’s a little background on Shea Moisture they’re owned under the Sundial Brands along with Nubian Heritage. These were both 100% black family owned hair and body product owned companies.
Back in 2015 Bain Capital took a minority stake in the Sundial Brand company, this means Bain Capital LLC. now owns less than 50% of Sundial Brands. This doesn’t mean the original owner Richelieu Dennis no longer has ownership , in fact he does. Where things get cloudy is that although Bain Capital owns less than 50% , Sundial Brands much of their marketing team is made up of employees who are not African American. Many are blaming this lack of diversity for the ‘white washed’ commercial advertisement they recently air across social media.
Black twitter dubbed the commercial the #allhairmatters advertisement. The commercial in question features one mixed race African American girl with wavy hair and about 2 other red head white women complaining about how they were insecure about their hair; they were discussing the ‘hair hate’ they’d encountered often.
The biggest issue with the ad is that Sundial Brands’s customer base does not feel as if the ad speaks to hair diversity. Women with darker skin and kinkier hair felt ignored in this ad in particular. A brand that was once exclusive to women of color with curly, kinky hair now feel ignored in their new Hair Hate advertisement. The one brand that women of color felt was exclusive to them now feel as if the brand has been white washed.
In an effort to improve the negative backlash Shea Moisture issued an apology for their supposed ‘tone deaf’ ad. Many are still feel that’s not enough and that something needs to be done internally. Some are taking a look at their staff which no longer reflects the demographic of their customer base. I took a look myself and the Vice President of their marketing team is not a woman of color neither is their social media manager. The actual video of the advertisement is below and so is their apology, and some responses from black twitter. I also shared the photo of the VP of their marketing team and their social media manager.
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