11 Jan 2017

DeColonaise Product Launch at 2017 APSP Plenary

The question of being economically self-sustaining is key to the organizing strategy of ANWO.   In order to successfully build our campaigns and support African women, who are vulnerable to state attacks, ANWO needed to have a way to bring in resources, separate from our membership dues; so we came up with beauty brand concept DeColonaise: A Revolution for your Hair and Body.

DeColonaise will put the discussion of colonization in the hands of everyone who purchases from us. With quotes on our labels, like “take the kinks out of your mind instead of your hair – Marcus Garvey” and marketing that targets the effects of colonialism with messages like has colonialism snatched your edges?”  we will market high quality natural products that will improve the condition of our hair and skin, while providing political education on each package.

Different than other hair and body brands, that focus on acceptable African beauty, we will challenge people’s conception of beauty by highlighting models with thick nappy hair, bold cuts, and individualized beauty in our marketing campaigns.  The idea being that twist-outs and rod-sets aren’t an aspiration for all and that African women are beautiful no matter how we wear our hair and put on our skin (sans skin bleaching).

At DeColonaise we will introduce a new concept, to the world of beauty,  about why we are losing hair, why we bleach our skin; which is colonialism. It causes the contradictions such as stress, anti-African beauty practices, capitalist exploitation, environmental anomalies, that contribute to how we view ourselves and how we treat beauty issues.  The answer is to decolonize and use products that celebrate who we are naturally.   So while we are decolonizing our hair and body with natural products that destroy free-radicals, and eliminate toxins – which come as a result of capitalist exploitation – we will also use the way we market to encourage conversations about freedom and decolonization.

Over the past few months, we have been working to bring DeColonaise from conception to reality.   We have started our product line with a few body butters:

Imperialism is Dying Puddin‘ contains organic sulfur-containing compound Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) which helps repair skin and treat skin problems like rosacea, allergies and wounds, it also restores hair growth in addition to helping the body adapt to stress. A unique attribute of this butter is its high water content that unleashes itself on your skin and hair for complete conditioning.

Black Berry is our smooth hair and body balm, great for conditioning the skin using ingredients like shea and avocado butters and coconut oil.

The Blacker the Berry is a slightly more rigid formula than Black Berry, but is packed with more therapeutic essential oils for those of us that need that extra “umph” for our bodies.

When we introduced the products at the 2017 APSP Plenary we sold out of our 18 jars in just under 2-days.   Good for us, but bad for others who wanted more.   But rest assured we are back in the kitchen making more of these butters.

DeColonaise is just a baby and we have more to do to make this a full brand that will sustain the work of our organization, which is why we are calling on our members and other African women to join ANWO to work on developing this concept.  Joining shows your unity with our work to organize other African women to challenge the conditions that come as a result of being colonized AND with the necessity of the project to fund the work of ANWO.

DeColonaise needs members who could function in the capacity of:

  • Product Developers
  • Distribution Coordinator
  • Marketing & Promotion Coordinator
  • Sales Coordinator
  • Budget Specialist

Join our economic work to bring in the resources that will free up our women so that we can be bigger, badder and bolder against imperialism.


Get a jar of DECOLONAISE here

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