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Make It Black: Redefining Race through Beauty

Published July 3, 2022
Published July 3, 2022
Pull Up For Change

In 2020, Sharon Chuter and the nonprofit Pull Up For Change campaign demanded beauty companies publicly reveal the proportion of Black employees in their corporate offices. This was done alongside #PullUpOrShutUp, to dismantle a flawed system that has allowed Black people to be left behind in the beauty landscape. Since the campaign's success in 2020, 2021, and 2022, Chuter and the Pull Up For Change organization have raised over $700,000, which is being deployed to emerging Black business founders. Following this success, Pull Up For Change is continuing its work through the relaunch of the Make It Black  campaign, delivering limited-edition beauty exclusives to redefine what being Black means while fundraising for Black business founders.

"As a Black Female founder, I understand, first-hand, the struggles of raising capital or accessing funding," Chuter states. "In fact, I am one of only 93 Black women in the history of America who have raised over $1M for start-ups. On the other hand, the average white male receives $2.1M to fund their start-ups. We have a long way to go to create true economic equality and there is no equality without equity. This is where I am proud to play a small part in supporting other Black female founders to make their dreams a reality, and to truly get the seat at the table that they very well deserve."

Make It Black will include brands such as Black Radiance, Covergirl, e.l.f. Cosmetics, Hairitage, Shea Moisture, TPH by Taraji, and Uoma by Sharon C. The campaign intends to help consumers understand that Black is beautiful, making an effort to deconstruct inaccurate and dangerously negative perceptions rooted in society and instead focus on a celebration of being Black. The campaign also has created a petition to update the word Black in both the Oxford English Dictionary as well as the Merriam-Webster Dictionary. The petition currently has over 6,000 signatures.

"Language plays a critical role in how we perceive the world," says founder Sharon Chuter. "The function of language goes beyond expressing ideas and concepts. It shapes thought and defines our collective consciousness. Language should be neutral, unbiased, and reflective of our current realities. It is in this regard that the dictionary has work to do."

The limited-edition products will all be decorated with black packaging and be sold throughout the month of June exclusively at Walmart and via Make It Black's participating brand websites. The campaign features an abundance of products, including a 3D highlighter palette and eyeshadow palettes from Black Radiance, mascara and eyeliner from Covergirl, e.l.f. Cosmetics’ Total Face Sponge, a hair rinse by Hairitage, hair products from Shea Moisture, a cleanser from TPH by Taraji, and last but not least, eyeshadow and lip tints from Uoma by Sharon C.

100% of the gross profits from the Make It Black campaign will be added to the Pull Up For Change impact fund and once again be allocated to emerging founders of Black businesses.


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