A couple of days ago I got an alert on my phone announcing Jessica Alba, main mogul CEO of The Honest Company, has gone into battle to capture market share from cosmetics giants like Unilever, Proctor Gamble and of course everyone's business nemesis, cosmetics behemoth, L'Oréal. What's the arena? Well if it's here on Olivia's it's hair of course!
In an interview with NY Magazine, Ms. Alba gave us insights into her thoughts behind the move into hair care. Alba said hair care was a natural progression for Honest, but the expansion was also born out of a very real, very scary personal experience with hair products.
"I was inspired to create it because I had a pretty severe allergic reaction to a couple of hair-care and styling products that everyone uses. I had to be taken to the emergency room on Father’s Day and go on antibiotics. It ruined Father’s Day and my vision was impaired for almost a week. I thought, This was crazy!
I always was a little allergic to these hair products, [which caused] sneezing and watering eyes. But I never had swollen, infected corneas. I gave it to the doctor and he pointed to a bunch of different ingredients that could be the culprit, including a synthetic fragrance."
Ummm.... what did she say? I was astounded by this severe reaction to a hair care products "everyone uses" language! I stopped my leisurely read, and ran my eyes rapidly from that proclamation to the bottom of the article in hopes that the woman, she, her, Alba - would put the offending products on BLAST! But nothing...I guess she didn't feel like a law suit...or a twitter fight.
But to me, those there were fighting words! I want to know what she used and see if this type of reaction was experienced by anyone else?
With continuing and horrific news reports surrounding Wen hair products, I'm more convicted than ever that WE have to share bad hair experiences as well as good, and vet products out of our cupboards. Before anyone raises their excuse me finger and points to the fact that Alba had an individual allergic reaction that could be uniquely linked to a myriad of things personal to her alone - let's think this through. How many times have you used a product or gone through a process that burns, itches, tingles (and its not from a tea tree oil infusion)?
In the black hair community, this itching, tingling and burning is associated with getting a relaxer (a perm that makes one's hair straight). This craziness is endured, every 6-8 weeks or so. Hair color can have the same delightful sensations and for some, even shampoos'.
We suffer through all this, in the name of beauty with those around us saying, "Oh girl.. that just means its working..."
Back to Honest.
Honest Hair Care is a sub-brand under Honest Beauty which Alba says is distinguished as separate from the Honest Company. Honest Hair Care has three different ranges Hydrate, Restore and Style. Honest Hair Care is marketed as a prestige brand at a price point of around USD$20 - USD$30 per product and is warranted as being of the same organic quality as the rest of the Honest Company product offerings.
I'm anxious to get my fingers on these heralded products! Ms. Alba will be a speaker at Forbes 30 under 30 Summit, 2016 in Boston October 16 - 19 and I look forward to hearing what she has to say about the expansion of her company as she mentors the young up and coming in attendance.
If and when you get your hands on Honest Hair Care let me know how it works for you via the comment box below. I'll make sure to get a few bottles across the ranges on my next visit to the U.S. in September!
In the meantime without trying any of the products I must take my hat off to Alba! Good move!