Race in Marketing: Shea Moisture

As a black woman, I’ve gone through many phases with my hair. Luckily over the past 10 years there’s been a huge movement for us black women to diss the popular portrayals of beauty and to love our natural hair.

Finding products was typically easy. YouTubers, bloggers and friends recommended products and brands and we created routines. Actually many of us included Shea Moisture products in our daily hair care routine.

We fell in love with Shea Moisture’s products; the fragrance, the naturalness, and most importantly, the blackness.

We helped build this company up. Raving about their ethics and products. Finally Shea Moisture, something black owned, began to feel successful … then BOOM!💥


Shea Moisture wanted to defy odds, wanted to break down walls in beauty aisles, and wanted to be more “inclusive”. They released an ad with only one black girl with loose curls down her back and far too many white girls discussing their struggles growing up with their hair types. (Struggles … you’ve got to be kidding right?!)

I studied marketing during undergrad, and I’m all for expanding your consumer market. However, I’m not okay with a black brand practically erasing its blackness to become a more household name for white America.

Too often we’re taught to reject our blackness to be successful. But that cycle has to stop somewhere. I honestly think marketing is the perfect field to defy odds – however, business executives need to hire more people of color so our opinions are heard before the release of a stupid ass ad!





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