The following quotes are from SheaMoisture's commercial campaign, #BreakTheWalls:
"We just have been conditioned to go to the corner and find our spot where we've been placed."
"Do I feel like I'm beautiful? Is ethnic not beautiful?"
"To be honest, we've dealt with it our whole lives, to the point of internalizing it."
To be "ethnic"...is that considered to be beautiful to department stores?
These questions and statements have weighed on the minds of black women nation-wide when visiting a local drug or department store in search of haircare products. And now, we are finally asking the tough questions. Ever wondered why Black haircare products aren't placed in the "Beauty" aisle? Or why we were granted only a small, secluded corner a couple aisles over? And why is the selection so small?
In their first ever commercial, SheaMoisture creates a moving and empowering visual depicting a group of black women visiting a department store. At first, they are gathered in the ethnic aisle, disappointed at the selection and cramped space provided by the store. Then, as they walked to to aisle with products for European hair textures, aka the "Beauty" aisle, the wall shook violently. Bottles of shampoo, conditioner and the like splattered all over the floor to reveal rows of brightly packaged SheaMoisture products.
I was informed that the commercial was first aired in early May, but I hadn't seen it until June, while watching the BET Awards. At that moment, I knew that this was a campaign that deserved as much momentum as possible. I've spoken to other women about it and asked if they had seen it as well. Though pleased to hear that there was a commercial for the beloved product line, they told me that they didn't even know that SheaMoisture had one. Nonetheless, this issue of divisiveness in our local WalMarts, Targets and other drugstores is something that we as women of color have been cognizant of since youth.
I have never believed in "trends" regarding the issues that I care about, especially when they pertain to black women. I most definitely won't stop advocating for those issues when they are ongoing. I encourage all black women to watch the campaign. If not on TV, online. Then speak out. That can be anything from writing letters to corporations, speaking to managers, or simply educating your family and friends.
Thank you SheaMoisture. You have never ceased to amaze me, whether it's providing amazing and healthy products for black girls like me to use faithfully, or calling to attention what needs to be heard.
View the campaign here: