*Gabrielle Union is set to launch a hair care line called Flawless, by Gabrielle Union — which will be available at Ulta Beauty on April 16.
“For me — having skin in the game — it deepens the connection,” said Union, speaking to WWD earlier this month from Milk Studios in Los Angeles, where she was being photographed for Flawless. “It makes me work a lot harder than if I was just a hired gun. I want to make sure that it’s right for me, for my family, for my friends, and for every person with textured hair. I want to have a seat at the table, and part of that is having ownership.”
The official website will make its debut on March 1: flawlesshair.com. The site will offer a range of 10 products priced from $19 to $29: Moisturizing Shampoo, Moisturizing Conditioner, Smoothing Shampoo, Smoothing Conditioner, Hair Masque, Blow Dry Cream, Hair Protection Spray, Shine Spray, Oil Treatment and Edge Control Gel. The packaging is decorated in teal, gold and black, and marked by a logo with an intertwined G and U meant to evoke designer fashion labels. Industry sources estimate the brand will generate as much as $6 million in first-year retail sales.
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Andy Rah, vice president of global marketing at Flawless, said, “You can cocktail the products altogether. They’re meant to be interchangeable and versatile to achieve looks without having to have 30 products.” He pointed to Hair Masque — a blend of avocado oil, marula oil and argan oil — as a hero item. Popular home hair remedies inspired the avocado oil in the mask. On the argan and marula oils, Rah elaborated, “the argan oil is one of the most highly searched oils for hair on Google out there. It’s our baseline oil that everyone knows and understands. The marula oil, aside from all the health benefits that it gives, also has a unique fair-trade story to it. It’s sourced in South Africa by indigenous women, so it’s bringing jobs.”
Union asserted, “I want women with textured hair to have great hair days.” In the past, she suffered to attain those joyful days and doesn’t believe that should have to be the case. “I went through a phase where I would leave my relaxer on so long, thinking the longer I leave this relaxer on, the straighter it’s going to be,” she recalled. “Cut to lesions, like open wounds in my scalp, trying to chase something that was unrealistic, and eventually probably in my mid- to late-20s I decided to give up my relaxer, and I went natural. By natural I mean underneath the weaves, extensions, clips and the hair color was my natural hair — thriving.”
When it comes to her own choice of hairstyles, Union had this to say: “A lot of people like to think if you wear extensions or weaves, you’re full of self-hatred and, if you wear natural hairstyles, your sense of self and your sense of community and culture is at an all-time high. Sometimes that’s the case. Sometimes it’s not,” she said. “I just look at it as each person has their own hair journey, and they’re all amazing, valid, worthwhile and beautiful, no matter what.”
Meanwhile, Union’s next socially conscious movie called “The Public” tackles serious issues and features Alec Baldwin, Emilio Estevez, Jena Malone, Christian Slater and Taylor Schilling.
“I like to mix it up. Projects with bigger budgets, bigger checks and some with smaller, more topical relevant subject matter. ‘The Public’ talks about homelessness and what is our moral duty to those less fortunate,” Union said. “We tend to treat homelessness like a plague or something to be pushed to the side as we gentrify neighborhoods, but most of us are a couple checks away from being in the exact same spot.”