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Be Natural. Be You.

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Buckle your seatbelts ladies! And get ready to let your natural locks blow in the wind and your skin shine against the summer sun. Beauty is what we’ve had all along, and the decision to embrace our natural hair and skin is here to stay. Everyday, more and more women are feeling empowerded to step into the world without heavy makeup or hair altering products. We are proudly challenging the world to accept us for who we are, and it would seem that the hair and cosmetics industry is getting in formation.

The Natural Hair Movement

Although the natural hair movement has been around for decades, the millennial generation has recently been pushing for full acceptance of natural beauty. According tothe Mintel Research Firm, an increase in natural hair has led to a massive decrease in spending on hair relaxers. Between 2011 and 2016, spending on hair relaxer declined by 30 percent. Mintel Multicultural Analyst Tonya Roberts points out the following (as featured on Premium Beauty News Website).

“The Black hair careindustry has undergone quite a transformation over the past five years, and that should continue heading into the next decade. As more and more Black consumers are embracing their natural self and walking away from relaxers, it is presenting opportunities for natural brands to enter the market.

This is not just in the United States. The Black Christian Network reported that Black Brazilian women are embracing this trend. Their June 19, 2018 publication summed it up this way:

“Ten years ago, it was not unusual to find robed women packed into a room at a salon, covering their mouths with rags to avoid inhaling fumes while hairdressers doused their locks in formaldehyde for a pin-straight look. Now, a growing number of black Brazilians are ditching the hair straighteners and embracing their curls.”

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In Ghana, West Africa, the trend is such that one hair dresser has reported a drop of 50% in her clientele because the women no longer wished to straighten their hair or use chemicals on their hair according to the BBC on January 29, 2018.  For Akua Djanie, known as Blakofe, a Ghanaian writer and TV presenter and currently the deputy head of the Ghana Tourist Development Company, embracing her natural hair is neither a fashion nor political statement. “It is a way of life. God created every race with a particular type of hair and it makes perfect sense to me to embrace that,” she told the BBC.One other Ghanaian women summed up her frustration with straightened hair thusly:

“Even when it rains, I don’t have to worry about my hair getting wet and because it is my own hair, I have gotten to know how to handle it,” she says. “Rain cannot damage natural hair but with a permed hair, there is very little you can do. The hair becomes limp and kind of plastered on flattened your head. You may have to go back to the salon to get it back in shape.”

On June 3, 2018, the National published an article that details how Puerto Rican women began ditching the hair straighteners to embrace their natural curls after hurricane Maria. It seems that was born out of necessity. The devastating hurricane caused incredible sorrow to the Island and the power outages that still persist in some parts of Puerto Rico. Lack of electricity seemed to be the catalyst for some to stop straightening their hair and embrace their natural curly locks.

This trend in not limited to one group of women, it cuts across all racial lines. On April 6, 2018 Today gathered four pairs of mothers and daughters to talk about embracing their natural hair. That article nicely captured the essence of this movement by a simple first-grader’s motto:

“You get what you get, and you don’t get upset.”

WE agree, wholeheartedly.

This natural hair trend is here to stay. A lot of celebrities are rocking their natural curls as we see in the February 12, 2018 issue of Cosmopolitan. While hair extensions and colorful wigs can still be seen on popular faces like the Kardashians, a trip to your local drug store will show how prevalent natural hair has become. According to Euromonitor International’s May 2018 report on Hair Care In the US, one of the key trends is the natural hair movement. The report also finds that while multicultural hair care is not new in the US, “it has shifted in recent years from being a niche, distinct aisle in stores, to becoming a mainstream part of hair care through an emphasis on natural ingredients and its adoption by a wider group of people. The report finds that brands whose original purpose was maintaining natural hair styles are now being used by consumers who have gravitated towards the origin-specific ingredients and free-from formulations commonly found in natural hair care brands.”

We at Shinkafa, are at the forefront of this multicultural hair movement. As consumers become savvy and more demanding of the ingredients in the products that they use, they inevitably begin to gravitate more to brands like Shinkafa. The reason is simple consumers are demanding products that are effective, made with superior ingredients, and without harmful chemicals. This trend as is not limited to the naturalistas. It involves all who care about what they put on their skin and their hair.

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Taking Off The Mask

Women are not only choosing to go natural with their hair, but are also letting the world see the beauty in their skin. Although the majority of women still wear some form of makeup, a trend is emerging in which women are re-thinking the degree to which they use makeup each day. Women are using a lighter amount of makeup to enhance their natural beauty and confidence, instead of changing the way they look.

If you are looking to join the natural makeup movement, know that you are not alone!

Women everywhere are encouraging us to rethink makeup and natural beauty. Only two years ago, Alicia Keys decided to stop wearing makeup altogether, and challenged us to be natural and see our own beauty. And with big names like Charlize Theron, Beyoncé, Bella Thorne, Zendaya and Kylie Jenner showing us their makeup-free beautiful faces, girls and women, everywhere are encouraged to do the same and feel confident in their skin.

Social Media’s Impact on Natural Beauty

We cannot deny that social media is able to alter and define what constitutes beauty. Thankfully, natural beauty is a huge topic being shared right now. Social media platforms such as YouTube, Instagram, and Pinterest are full of natural beauty experts who offer advice, resources, and opinions about what practices, products, and services will allow us to shine in our natural beauty. Small and large beauty companies in the industry are taking note of the impact of social media and recognizing that women of all races look to their peers for insight on hair and skin care. By turning the influencers’ talk towards natural beauty products, we are able to spread natural beauty to more and more women.

Many influencers are rapidly becoming brand ambassadors for big and small hair care and beauty companies. Natural hair vloggers attract millions of women to their channel every day. Vloggers like Whitney White, better known as Naptural85, My Natural Sistas, Sai De Silva, Taren Guy, Nikkimae2003, Monica Stevens, MohoganyCurls, Chime Edwards, Alyssa Forever, ImShineStruck, to mention a few, have turned their brands on social media into an empowering affair. Some have secured lucrativedeals that allow them to introduceproducts to their followers from various natural beauty care lines and sharing the journey for millions of women to feel confident with their natural beauty.

You are naturally beautiful. You were born for this. Don’t be afraid to show it.

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