Shea Moisture Releases New Ad and People Are Still Not Here For It

It’s like they’ll never learn… Shea Moisture has once again released a new ad – this time titled “Back 2 Old School” – and people are not feeling it.

Earlier this week, Shea Moisture released an ad that people are calling it out as a way to get back into the good graces of its customers. The ad features appearances from Power star Olurotimi “Rotimi” Akinosho and social media personality Nick Fraser. The series of videos featured people dressed in 90’s styled clothing, dancing to old school rap music. After the release, many of the company’s 490,000 Instagram followers began to comment and call out the ad as an act to get its African American customer base back.

Back in April, Shea Moisture had to pull their ad “Everybody Gets Love” after receiving heavy criticism on social media for excluding the customers that had been with them since the beginning. Part one of the video series featured women talking about the “hair hate” they received and how they eventually learned to embrace it thanks to Shea Moisture products. The video starts off with well-known vlogger Sayria Jade talking about the insecurities she had with her natural hair – then the video shifted to white women talking about the issues they had with their hair.

After the video surfaced, the company received backlash almost instantly, which resulted in the ad being pulled. Many of the company’s loyal customers – mainly women of color –felt betrayed, saying the company not only turned it back on the people who supported them, but compared the “hair hate” women with natural hair receive to women who don’t have to worry about it.

Not long after the ad was pulled, Shea Moisture issued an apology on Facebook to its customers and to those who were offended by the ad:

“Wow, okay – so guys, listen, we really f-ed this one up. Please know that our intention was not – and would never be – to disrespect our community, and as such, we are pulling this piece immediately because it does not represent what we intended to communicate. You guys know that we have always stood for inclusion in beauty and have always fought for our community and given them credit for not just building our business but for shifting the beauty landscape. So, the feedback we are seeing here brings to light a very important point. While this campaign included several different videos showing different ethnicities and hair types to demonstrate the breadth and depth of each individual’s hair journey, we must absolutely ensure moving forward that our community is well-represented in each one so that the women who have led this movement never feel that their hair journey is minimized in any way. We are keenly aware of the journey that WOC face – and our work will continue to serve as the inspiration for work like the Perception Institute’s Good Hair Study/Implicit Association Test that suggests that a majority of people, regardless of race and gender, hold some bias towards women of color based on their textured or natural hair. So, you’re right. We are different – and we should know better.

Thank you all, as always, for the honest and candid feedback. We hear you. We’re listening. We appreciate you. We count on you. And we’re always here for you. Thank you, #SheaFam, for being there for us, even when we make mistakes. Here’s to growing and building together…”

Photo Credit: Shea Moisture/Instagram