This article is republished here from The Hollywood Reporter
The ‘Black-ish’ star said her line Pattern Beauty will “actually fulfill the unmet needs of our community” as she joins “the natural hair movement.”
Tracee Ellis Ross is officially in the beauty industry.
The Black-ish actress announced Tuesday the launch of her haircare brand Pattern Beauty for curly, coily and tight textured hair.? The products will be available on Monday at patternbeauty.com and on Sept. 22 at Ulta ($9 to $42).
Products include a shampoo, three targeted conditioners, a leave-in conditioner, two hair serums, a shower brush, a hair clip and a microfiber towel to enhance and nourish curls.
Ross, Pattern founder and CEO, said on Instagram that the brand was 10 years in the making, though she’d been dreaming of the concept for 20 years. Ross wrote her first brand pitch in 2008, after wrapping her TV show Girlfriends. The daughter of Diana Ross, she spent two years working with chemists, explaining that she and her panel tested 74 samples in order to select the seven initial formulas with safe ingredients.
“@patternbeauty is here to empower,” Ross wrote. “@patternbeauty is for those of us who need more than a quarter size of product. large conditioner sizes that actually fulfill the unmet needs of our community. accessible pricing because everyone should have access to their most beautiful hair in their own shower, and gorgeous packaging that conjures the legacy of our history and makes us all feel like the royalty that we are.”
She worked with beauty incubator Beach House, which also teamed with Millie Bobby Brown last month on her Florence by Mills vegan Gen Z skincare line.
Added Ross, “I’m excited for PATTERN to join the natural hair movement, and to celebrate our hair for what it is: beautiful!”
The natural hair movement has indeed gained steam this year with laws passed in California and New York in July that ban racial discrimination on the basis of natural hair textures. Known as The CROWN (Create a Respectful and Open Workplace for Natural Hair) Act, the California law explains that the history of the U.S. is “riddled with laws and societal norms that equated ‘blackness,’ and the associated physical traits, for example, dark skin, kinky and curly hair, to a badge of inferiority, sometimes subject to separate and unequal treatment.” It says this has influenced American standards of professionalism, which are based on European features.
Black actors have previously spoken up about the lack of trained hairstylists on set that are equipped to work with their hair textures. Kerry Washington said at a panel this year: “Battles that I often had to wage, boulders I had to push uphill, whether it was to have a hairstylist who understood the texture of my hair or to have a storyline that fairly addressed my experiences as a black woman, I didn’t have to fight as hard when there was somebody [Shonda Rhimes] in the room who understood, who had a shared path.”
While other stars have entered the makeup business (Rihanna with Fenty Beauty, Jessica Alba with Honest Beauty, Kylie Jenner with Kylie Cosmetics), Ross faces less competition in the haircare space. Hollywood hair stylist Jen Atkin (clients include Chrissy Teigen and the Kardashians) founded Ouai Haircare in 2015, with sales around $23 million in 2018, according to Women’s Wear Daily. In turn, hairstyling collective R+Co worked with Hollywood hair guru Ashley Streicher (Mandy Moore, Zooey Deschanel) on a curated line with Fred Segal this year.
Coming up next for Ross: the comedy Covers with Dakota Johnson and Late Night director Nisha Ganatra. Her show Mixed-ish is set to premiere Sept. 24 on ABC.