Influencer is accused of racism for using ‘black hair oil’ that has been trending online

Beauty influencer is accused of racism for using ‘black hair oil’ that has been trending online for nearly a year – some black women fear its rising popularity will lead to price hikes and formula changes

  • Mielle’s Rosemary Mint Scalp & Hair Strengthening Oil has been a popular hair treatment trend on TikTok that blew up in 2022
  • While several influences have posted about the product online, one beauty guru was just called out for stealing the oil ‘made for black women’ 
  • Danielle Athena’s hair washing tutorial using the hair growth oil has led to a contentious debate online 
  • Some Black women fear the trend to promote the oil would increase the price of the product and lead to formula changes 

An influencer is accused of racism for using a hair oil ‘made for black women.’ 

Beauty guru Danielle Athena’s hair-washing tutorial with the hyped Mielle Rosemary Mint Scalp and Hair Strengthening Oil sparked a heated debate on Twitter after a woman, dubbed @aprettyPR on Twitter, called out the influencer for stealing from black women. 

Athena’s video opened the flood gates for criticism with some women expressing their distaste despite the oil being advertised by the black-owned brand ‘for all hair types.’ 

‘One dropperful of the Mielle Rosemary Hair Growth Oil all over my scalp,’ Athena said in the video.

The influencer who has about 49,000 followers on TikTok has since deleted the video. 

Danielle Athena's hair washing tutorial using the hair growth oil has led to a contentious debate online

Danielle Athena’s hair washing tutorial using the hair growth oil has led to a contentious debate online

Athena’s video was reposted by @aprettyPR with the caption, ‘White women steal from black women and just be doing s***. and of course she turned those comments off.’ 

Some users worried the trend to promote the oil would increase the price of the product and lead to formula changes.

‘When a product made FOR POC [people of color] is then used and popularized by non POC, companies tend to change ingredients and formulas to fit the majority of who is buying the product,’ one user wrote. ‘MEANING it will no longer work the same for the targeted consumers.’ 

The increased popularity of the oil has also led to a scarce supply at some stores as some said local shops are nearly sold out.

‘The thing is its BARELY any hair products in the market for black hair that actually works and moisturize, nourish, and keeps our curls so to have a product that finally works for US to be sold out everywhere because of people who “Discovered” it.’ 

Others argued rosemary oil can strengthen hair and promote healthy growth.

‘Are you upset that she oils her scalp? Or because she supports a black business while doing so? I wanna know where to direct outrage,’ one person wrote. 

Another person added: ‘I’m honestly so confused by this. I’ve been doing this for years with my hair, and not because I saw black women do this.

‘I love researched that rosemary oil is great for hair loss and growth, I didn’t know this was proprietary.’ 

‘I recognize how some Black women feel and we should respect it,’ another wrote. ‘However, I am certain this Black owned business is thrilled to have free marketing and support from non-Black customers. Their support helps grow the business, which creates opportunities for its Black stakeholders. 

Some argued rosemary oil can strengthen hair and promote healthy growth

Some argued rosemary oil can strengthen hair and promote healthy growth

Another person argued that they can see the pros and cons of the oil being advertised

Another person argued that they can see the pros and cons of the oil being advertised 

Mielle owner Monique Rodriguez addressed the contention and confirmed the company would be keeping the formula the same

Mielle owner Monique Rodriguez addressed the contention and confirmed the company would be keeping the formula the same

Meanwhile, Mielle owner Monique Rodriguez addressed the contention and confirmed the company would be keeping the formula the same.

‘We have no plans to change the formula for Rosemary Mint Oil or any products,’ Rodriguez wrote on Twitter. ‘There have been a few recent comments on this posted on this topic but I can personally guarantee you that we are not making any ingredient changes.’ 

Mielle promotes its company online as a beauty brand that believes in natural and healthier ingredients for hair by using a variety of herbs and minerals. 

While several products on Mielle’s website are ‘made for all hair types’ a majority of models on the site are black.

The hair growth oil has been trending on social media since the summer of 2022 but hasn’t gained negative traction until recently. 

Source

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