Since my return, I have begun the formidable process of revisiting many of my favorite hair product brands to see what changes have been made over the past year. Products in general change constantly and the hair care industry is no exception. Unfortunately, though, it is with a heavy heart that I tell you I don't feel that SheaMoisture is a brand I can support any longer.
There are two reasons for this. First (and this is more of a personal reason), but it appears as though SheaMoisture, long a champion for women of color, has all but abandoned their loyal customers. In an effort to broaden their appeal with a wider audience (read: white women) and making product formula changes to support that effort, they seem to have forgotten who made them popular in the first place.
You might think that is odd coming from a white woman, but I am not happy with any product brand that rewards loyalty with betrayal, all for the sake of fattening their bottom line. SheaMoisture was a fabulous brand for women of color that just happened to work fabulously on my white hair (and did for many ladies with curly tresses regardless of their ethnicity). So why change it, unless financial gain is now the number one priority? There is so much wrong with SheaMoisture's approach over the past several years, it's heartbreaking.
Second, let's talk about the actual product formulations themselves. They have changed and not in a good way. The products are thinner, the slip and feel is different, and the product ingredients list on the bottle is very different than the product ingredients list of just a year or two ago. I am not a product chemist, but it appears to me as if there is more "filler" in the ingredients lineup and some of those ingredients are far less expensive. Let's not even talk about the disappearance of virtually all organic ingredients.
In my opinion then, SheaMoisture is expanding their customer base while reducing the cost of producing their product by cheapening it as well as turning their backs on women of color, which puts them in the category of just another old product line. Anything that was once special about them is gone.
I started using a brand called Alaffia in a totally unrelated capacity about 18 months ago when I spied it on the shelf of my local Vitamin Shoppe. Holy curls, this stuff is awesome. I've just recently started looking at it more closely and I think we may have a serious contender here. In a separate blog post, I will talk about Alaffia. In the meantime, if you feel there is another brand worthy of a look, please mention it in the comments or on our Facebook fan page.
Curlisciously yours, Tiffany