Detroit cosmetologist Tianna James is looking to do away with the tired beauty store model. James thought there’d ought to be a better way than the supply stores run by owners who don’t look like us and a less-than-friendly staff, with shelves stocked full of products made by whoever from wherever, and comprised of harmful chemicals.
Enter Bamboo Beauty, an online beauty boutique carrying lines of plant-based, nontoxic body care and hair care products for women. She says Bamboo Beauty is committed to “serving women the way we deserve. We spend a lot of money with the beauty industry.” A ton, in fact. Black Americans shelled out $473 million on hair care, $127 million on grooming aids and $465 million on skin care in 2017, according to a 2018 Nielsen report.
The e-commerce firm launched in November with brands like Eu’Genia Shea, a black mother-and-daughter-run company producing natural, raw shea butters. Bamboo Beauty offers their Pregnancy Strength shea, to combat those pesky stretch marks; the Dermatological Strength shea, to help with eczema and psoriasis; and the Everyday shea, for that Saturday night suppleness.
Find a slew of other cleansers, conditioners and oils, like Kreyol Essence’s 100% pure Haitian black castor oil, “which is kind of rare,” James says. “We see a lot of Jamaican black castor oils on the market but not a lot of Haitian black castor oil, and that’s the best of castor oils.” Bamboo’s website says it’s the “liquid gold of the Caribbean.”
James says, “We are wanting to be a trusted source for clean, green beauty products along with bringing awareness to women’s health and how product ingredients affect women’s health.”
Recent research is developing a correlation between many of the products favorited by black women and some of the ailments we’re consistently plagued with, like fibroids and certain cancers. Bamboo Beauty also has a blog component which, James says, will further explore this and other issues relevant to us, to serve up some woke alongside the golden goods.