For many years, several hair care brands didn’t focus much on Black hair. As time went on, people realized enough was enough. Then began the creation of companies that catered specifically to our hair. Brands like Aunt Jackie’s, Miss Jessie’s, Shea Moisture, and more started to pop up, giving us a variety of hair care products to choose from. These brands have marketed directly to Black women and the shared realities we face when tackling our hair.

Mielle Organics is another brand that focuses on Black women’s hair. The brand has been going viral for its Rosemary Mint Scalp and Hair Strengthening Oil. Many users on TikTok have praised the oil for helping their hair grow but some feel that the product may have reached the wrong demographic.

Towards the end of December, TikTok influencer Alix Earle shared her top 2022 Amazon purchases. One product on her list was the oil in question. She also mentioned in the video how much she loves the product. “I’ve only been using this for a little over a month, and I’ve already seen tremendous hair growth,” she said.

Subsequently, Black women flocked to the comments section of the video. “If y’all sell our Mielle hair oil I will riot,” one user said. “Great now Mielle is about to be gentrified,” said another. Earle’s video has now created what people have called the “Alix Earle Effect,” where a majority of white creators have taken to the app to test and review the product. Because of this, the floodgates opened up for Black women to protect the oil at all costs.

Influencers, Beware

Although the oil has been trending all throughout 2022 from users that weren’t Black, only recently did it start to gain negative attention. Taylor Rose, a hair specialist, featured the oil on her TikTok as a pre-wash treatment in January. Kelly Anne Stone, a lifestyle content creator, also posted in early November.

Another influencer, Danielle Athena, was the next to receive the wrath of Black women who were tired of sharing their precious products. Athena posted her hair-washing tutorial which included the Mielle Oil. Twitter User, @aprettyPR, posted Athena’s TikTok video on Twitter. In the replies, users shared their disdain for white women using products marketed for Black women.

Athena has since deleted the Tiktok video.

One Twitter user explained the problem with this new trend, making it clear that scalp oiling is not the main issue. “The problem is they always come a get the products they know and can see black women primarily using and soon as they do it’s not accessible to us anymore due to price raises or it all being taken.”

Users Feel The Oil’s Newfound Popularity May Heed Changes From The Company

Other users do not agree with the current outrage. Another user shared that this spike in popularity may be helping this Black-owned business. “I recognize how some Black women feel and we should respect it,” they wrote. “However, I am certain this Black-owned business is thrilled to have free marketing and support from non-Black customers. Their support helps grow the business, which creates opportunities for its Black stakeholders.”

Additionally, Mielle owner Monique Rodriguez spoke out about the internet debate, making it clear that although the company gained a new demographic, the formula of the product will stay the same.

“We have no plans to change the formula for Rosemary Mint Oil or any products,’ Rodriguez wrote on Twitter. ‘There have been a few recent comments on this posted on this topic but I can personally guarantee you that we are not making any ingredient changes.”

Want to try the oil for yourself? Click the link below to get your hands on a bottle to see what all the hubbub is about!

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