A new line of braiding hair created by a Black woman is upgrading the braiding experience, and Ruth Samuel at Allure is sharing just how important this new move is for the culture in an article below.
Synthetic kanekalon hair is what Black women typically use for braid extensions. But, for some, the scalp irritation it can cause seems like too high a price to pay for a hairstyle. Ciara Imani May is looking to change all that with her new brand.
In June 2019, Ciara Imani May was in the process of growing her hair out. She decided to do so with the help of protective styles, choosing to wear braids back to back. That was when she started experiencing extreme scalp irritation.
“I was researching and found this article that details the actual materials used to make synthetic hair and the connection was immediately apparent [to me] between the type of plastics used to manufacture our braiding hair and the reaction that I was experiencing,” May tells Allure. “I wanted to [see if] the material itself was causing this reaction and also creating all this pollution.”
In 2020, Refinery29 reported that synthetic wigs are “composed of ultra-fine strands of plastic” and non-biodegradable materials that contribute to growing landfills. Furthermore, the cheap price of hair is driven by the exploitation of poor laborers, who are often women of color.
Aspiring to be a better steward of the environment, May, 26, quickly recognized where there were gaps in the availability of sustainable options for her protective hairstyles — and sought to fill them by creating her own line. Months after lab testing popular hair brands and at least eight grants later, Rebundle officially launched on January 17, 2021.
Read the rest of the article on Allure today.