Black Beauty Is Black History
There have been so many instrumental Black women in the beauty industry, many of whom are just now getting their shine. Take for example the first Black Woman Millionaire, Madam C.J. Walker: who first started selling a hair grower at the turn of the 20th century, was the first American woman to become a self-made millionaire. Netflix came out with her story, but previously you never really heard much about her in full detail.
I have been obsessed with all thing’s beauty, fashion and lifestyle. I blame my mother. I grew up being the only girl and watching my mother in awe when she got dressed to attend a function or a meeting. She had a full walk-in closet with amazing shoes, dresses and my personal favorite, handbags. My mother is beautiful without material things, but these just enhanced her style – I envied it.
My mother has the most beautiful full, long and thick hair. I was blessed as a little girl to have even thicker and longer hair than here. I must admit however, wash day was not my favorite. To this day I am very tender headed. My mother taught me my hair was a source of pride and to always take care of it, embrace it and celebrate it. This was a challenge for me when I was younger because I went to schools where girls did not have the same hair texture as me. I felt different. My hair was thick and curly compared to their straight, wavy hair.
However, over time I learned to love my hair and my “Hairitage”. I love my hair texture; I love my curls and I love it straight. I often get asked what my heritage is because of my skin tone and hair. My family “heritage” is comprised of a little bit of everything and I think that makes it truly beautiful. I grew up in a household where my mother kept my hair routine and hers simple.
My grandma (my mom’s mother), the only grandmother I’ve known, Pauline, was a beautician – it definitely must run in my blood! I remember my grandmother had vintage jewelry and beautiful fur stoles/coats. As a little girl I would play in her jewelry, hats and anything I could get my hands on. They were the ultimate images of Beauty to me. Something one day, I would inspire to be like.
My grandmother’s hair was also so chic. Even in her later years I remember going to her retirement community and helping my mother wash it and set it on rollers. It was a part of her self-care beauty routine, even if she wasn’t going anywhere. She always said, “If you look good, you feel even better.” My mother taught me the necessity of a great beauty routine: cleanse your hair really well, condition it, protect it and give it some love.
Black Women and Beauty are truly part of not only Black History but History. According to Essence Magazine, “African Americans spend $1.2 trillion each year, and that number is projected to rise to $1.5 trillion by this year. A 2018 study found that African American women entrepreneurs accounted for 20 percent of all women-owned businesses and had the highest rate of growth in new companies between 2017 and 2018.” Yet, we are often left out of the conversation and representation. That is exactly why Herald Beauty is here and we hope you have enjoyed this far with more to come.
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Morgan Angelique Owens is the author of "Finding My Sparkle" and Founder & CEO of the MAO Brand, Professional Pretty, and Curvy Cardio, LLC.
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