For centuries, Black People, especially creatives, haven't been given the credit and respect they deserve for their craft. Now, these creators are taking action to fix that, and their work and presence are starting to get more recognized in the world of beauty.
Black People have always been a blueprint to inspire and help build a solid foundation for anything we come across! We encourage change and we don’t settle for anything less. The beauty industry has often neglected Black People and we’re often left out and underappreciated. Foundations don’t come in enough shades for us, concealers are too light or too dark, and lipsticks don’t fit our skin tone. With every decision that is typically made in beauty, a black person or a POC is not considered.
Black beauty creatives have created a pathway for these brands. We, unfortunately, have to always take the extra step and teach them what looks good on our skins, what powder is best for our skin color, etc. We’re always putting the extra work in because we think of all the other Black people who will have to face this problem.
Black Beauty creatives have really helped these companies and they should be given their flowers for doing what nobody wanted to do for our people. They take many steps to ensure that we keep progressively growing in areas that are lacking. One of these steps is holding these brands accountable.
Hold These Brands Accountable
2020 was a year of holding many brands accountable, whether that was for not having enough Black employees in their C suite, or something as simple as not enough diversity in their brand photos or on their teams. Many Black beauty creatives used their platforms to talk about the mistreatment they have faced from non-black-owned companies. They are often discriminated against because of their race and paid extremely low for their work.
Black creatives have taught us the importance of holding brands accountable because as a company it is your responsibility to make everyone feel included. Sharon Chuter, the CEO and founder of UOMA Beauty took action and created "Pull up, or Shut up," a way to implement real change by calling out these brands. She says the only way we can do it is by doing it publicly, and in her interview with Forbes, she says “So, if the whole world is going to come together and say Black lives matter, then let’s make Black lives matter. Let’s stop talking about it. Talk is cheap. You can’t say Black lives matter if you don’t have any Black employees in your office."
Chuter made Pull Up or Shut up for this exact reason we are asking brands to release their number of black employees (ps. many of your favorite brands do not have any black people on the executive level.
Say No to "No Pay" or "Low Pay"
Time is money, and Black creatives are refusing to do work for free. Considering we put in ten times the work, the least these brands could do is pay us. Black creatives now are demanding their money's worth and the same millions of dollars they give to non-black creatives.
Jackie Aina, a prominent Black influencer on Youtube, recently talked about this topic on her Instagram story. When asked by a commenter, "what's the most annoying part about being a black creator/business owner," she mentioned how annoying it is "for a lot of dark skin black creators because people pay most of them dust because they don't "appeal" to wider audiences."
Creating Our Own Table
Many of us are fed up and tired of waiting for companies to be inclusive towards Black people, so we create our own seats at the table. We provide our own people and other minorities opportunities to build their network. Brands like Boafo Beauty, Fenty Beauty, Hanahana Beauty, and many more show us what inclusivity is, on all levels of the business. It's time we take action and pave our own way to success in the beauty industry.
We owe Black people so muchL the beauty industry has never been this advanced and so much of it is thanks to our people. Do you agree with these initiatives? Let us know in the comments. As always, if you'd like to collaborate or be featured in one of our articles feel free to contact me, Fanta Kaba; by email, commenting on this piece, or via Instagram!