Sista Shea Moisture Don’t Sit with Us Anymore
This week, Sista Shea left us.
Don’t believe me? Here’s the video link:
From watching it, you may be able to see that she is moving on to her blonde friends. This is more than a hair issue in black America. This is an episode of Mean Girls and Sista Shea just left us for the Plastic’s table after all the work we did to make her ass look good.
It was only a few short years ago that Sista Shea was battling every Jill, Jane, Susy hair product for space on the bottom shelf, shouting out at natural-haired black girls like me to help her out. Many of us did. We loved her. Sista Shea knew what my kinky, dried out, pressed-distressed locks needed, and she gave it in such delicious scents with natural ingredients. Sista Shea helped me and millions of black girls like me figure out how to find our natural curl. I thought we would be friends forever.
Shea Moisture was a staple in my home where five heads of black hair demanded daily attention. Each curl pattern and scalp are different, so are the products we used. Sista Shea almost had a line on the budget, but the cost was worth it for the confidence she helped us find. Even my husband’s Caucasian waves have sipped a bit of what Sista Shea was selling over the years. She was more than a moisturizer to us. She had become family.
It went deeper than that though.
I went clean from the creamy crack about four years ago. At that time, I found and really depended on the Shea Moisture line to help to not only repair my hair, but to also aid me in the sometimes terrifying decision to live with natural hair. I say terrifying because there are moments when I would get up to speak at a conference and would feel that the Natural Hair Jo seemed “too much” for academic audiences, which often lacked diversity. I had nothing else to offer. I couldn’t straighten and flatten the blackness away like I once did on the creamy crack. Presses cost money I didn’t have, and my hair was short so options were limited.
How did I get through? By stepping off on faith that the audience would see past their often obvious discomfort and hear me. Unfortunately, there were a few times it didn’t happen. Yet I persisted, right? I did, with Sista Shea right by my side every step of the way.
Then, yesterday she ditched us for a seat at the popular table with a bunch of Beckys and Reginas.
She left the rest of us sitting in our old spot, wondering what we did to make her go, and what would we do now? How could she just up and leave after all we been through? All that we’ve done for her, even?
The whole table has been talking since it happened.
“Should have known they would want her after all we did to make her look good. Sista Shea ain’t shit without us!”
Nods of agreement all around.
“She was already planning to leave, just lookat how she was thinning out the body butters. Who do you think that was for?”
We all rolled our eyes and sucked our teeth at Becky’s table, where Sista Shea was laughing it up.
“I’m gone cut her!” We had to calm this voice down, but we all felt her pain. It ran too deep.
The talk turned at some point. Someone suggested looking at other small hair and beauty lines run by POCs and all natural. They said there were hundreds of places begging to come sit at out table. Here’s a few:
· https://oyinhandmade.com/ Oyin Handmade
· Quemet Biologics http://www.qhemetbiologics.com/
· Reagan Sanai Natural Hair Essentials https://www.facebook.com/reagansanai/
· Crowned Curlies http://crownedcurlies.com/
I know we plan to put our eggs and dollars in a few different baskets. And not all our hope in one brand. She really did a number on us.
Then today, she wants to come crawling back!!!!
Nah uh, girl!
You did some damage. And, that dirt they up on you ain’t even cute. That line about expanding to fit a wider market is crap too. Just look our table already. We got light skinned girls and even white girls who know the curly hair struggle. We even got white moms of black kids over here trying to form relationships on behalf of their kids of color. Regina ain’t got a curl on her. What can you do for her?
We are done, though. It was fun while it lasted, and as hard as it hurts, we gotta move on from you.