Here's Some Help for Hotels That Need to Diversify Their Haircare Brands

The cultural landscape of diversity in America and the UK is a rocky one. We have a tumultuous past, but in terms of progress, we've made leaps and bounds in the right direction. Finally, major beauty brands have made a point to create products that cater to a wide array of skin tones and hair textures, which had been a problematic, cyclical issue that women of colour deal with. Yet we still have a long way to go. Last week, singer Halsey reminded everyone that there is much more work to be done, when she brought an important issue to the forefront that's been swept under the rug in the past.

As Glamour reported in a Twitter thread that has since gone viral, Halsey called out hotels and their lack of diverse haircare brands catered to textured hair. Hotel bathrooms rarely carry shampoos and conditioners that are healthy for black women's hair, so using those offerings has never been an option for women of colour. "I've been travelling for years now, and it's been so frustrating that the hotel toiletry industry entirely alienates people of colour," she wrote. "I can't use this perfumed watered down white people shampoo. Neither can 50% of our customers. Annoying."

Her tweet warranted opposing responses. Many Twitter users questioned Halsey's ethnicity, something she's defended in the past, speaking publicly about her biracial background. Others expressed gratitude for Halsey bringing this glaring issue up on her platform. Despite opposing opinions, Halsey acknowledged her financial privilege and stood by her statement that it's not fair that disadvantaged minority communities are forced to buy and bring their own hair products: "I'm fortunate enough to be financially in a position to do so, but POC travelling frequently for work/medical reasons might not be," she wrote. "If white ppl can enjoy the luxury/convenience, there should be an option for everyone to," she continued. "It's an 'insignificant' example of a bigger problem. That's all!"

To be honest, the limiting hotel toiletries offered to me was a disadvantage I chalked up to being "just the way things are." But Halsey's right—this is another microaggression that speaks to a larger issue at hand. People of colour should not continuously be an afterthought—if we are spending the same amount of money for our hotel stays, we should be offered an equal opportunity to utilise amenities. Most shampoos and conditioners offered in a majority of hotels across the country are full of sulfates and harsh chemicals, which are notoriously known to be harmful to textured hair. To make matters worse, sulfates lead to excessive dryness, breakage, and scalp issues.

We're leading up a call to action for hotels to revamp their top shelves and stock up on sulfate-free shampoos that are healthy for all hair types. Keep reading for the most trusted brands and help us spread the word to get these into hotels nationwide.