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African American Women and Cosmetics : The African American and the American Women in Beauty Industry

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Abstract

The paper on ‘African American women caught between American beauty industries ‘deals with as to how these women have not been given due recognition in the field of the beauty industry and it has always sidelined these women. Even beauty products have not been developed according to the African American women’s needs. Many top beauty companies do not recruit these women for jobs and all executive positions are held by the American women. This discrimination has been depicted in the essay with the help of two references, ‘How Inclusive’ Beauty Leaves Black Women Wanting’ and ‘The beauty industry profits off Black women. Now Black women are fighting for accountability’. The question as to whether the African American women have been able to achieve their rights? has been answered in the paper.

Introduction

The African American women who purchase cosmetic products form 79 percent of the total population, while the American women form only 16 percent. This is based on a survey conducted in 2019. Though the scenario paints a rosy picture, most cosmetics are manufactured keeping in mind the needs of the American women. These women require foundation which does not make their skin more darker than the color they already possess. Skin care and hair products for them are as well not up to the mark. They are sidelined for advertisements, new products and employment. The American women are always the first choice for such events. The other unusual aspect is that, all the brands which are created for the African American women carry the name of food items like chocolate, coffee etc. which sounds disrespectful. To solve these problems,  beauty companies have to take these women as models and journalists should include their reports in the media. This will ensure that they are not neglecting these women on the basis of color. The essay has been written to show how the African American women have to struggle against the American women in the field of beauty (Hoskin, 2020).

African American Women who Changed Beauty Trends:

Madam Walker was the creator of hair care products as the product that she used made her suffer from hair loss. She became a millionaire by personally selling the products and interacting directly with the customers. Pat McGrath was a make- up woman who invented new products and became very popular. She has done make up for models in fashion shows and has a lab of her own. Alicia Keys started a new trend of not using any make up  and she wants women to realize that  natural beauty is the best though she is not against the idea of using make-up. Lisa Price, another African American woman launched her hair care products by the name of ‘Carol’s Daughter’, which witnessed huge sales in departmental stores. She was the forerunner to start her own company. Balanda Atis is another woman who was a manager in L’Oreal’s Women of Color Lab. She developed  foundation shades to match the skin tones of the African American women, after much research (Goul, et.al, 2020).

‘Pull Up For Change’:

This is a movement which has been started to ensure that the African American women are given equal opportunities in jobs in  the cosmetic industry. Famous companies like Revlon, L’Oreal, Glossier and others employ only about 5-8 percent of these women in their work force. Some companies do not employ them at all. However, the scenario is improving as beauty activists and customers are fighting for the rights to be given to these women.’ Pull up for change’ was founded by Sharon Chuter, who had worked in L’Oreal and has now got her own makeup brand called ‘Uoma’.This campaign can be viewed on Instagram and many brands have been supporting them for this cause. The companies have assured to employ African American women in the beauty industry (Wischhover, 2020).

Attitude Towards these Women in Stores:

Two famous brand stores, Ulta and Sephora faced charges of racist attitude in their stores towards the African American women who had gone for shopping. An employee of Sephora had asked the security to check a singer, who posted this act in social media. The store had to be shut down for an hour to give training to

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