Have you ever, really thought about the racial divide in beauty? Regardless of the colour of your skin we all know about the struggles that women face when it comes to diversity in the beauty industry. Makeup shades might spring to mind but we bet you hadn’t thought about the physical separation between hair products in stores.
The beauty aisles are one of the only places where it’s deemed acceptable to racially segregate. Products branded ‘ethnic’ are found in a separate aisle, or section from the rest of the ‘mainstream’ hair care products.
To raise awareness and also put and end to the racial divide in beauty aisles, hair care company Shea Moisture have created an empowering campaign in an attempt to #BreakTheWalls currently in place. The short video depicts a black woman walking down the beauty aisle of a shop towards the ‘mainstream’ section. “There’s a section called ethnic and there’s an aisle called beauty,” another woman can be heard saying.
And it’s not just about beauty products, this segregation represents a far deeper issue that’s so inherently ingrained in society it’s considered a part of social norms. “We’ve dealt with it our whole lives to the point of internalising it,” says the woman in the video.
At the end of the video the shelves fall and the woman finds herself standing in front of Shea Moisture products, all sitting on the same shelf as the rest of the hair care products. “We are Shea Moisture and now we can be found in the beauty aisle, where we belong.”
We hope that all hair care companies and stores follow suit and #BreakTheWalls, too.