On Wednesday 11th of September 2013, I had the pleasure to attend a launch hosted by L’Oreal East Africa. The invite had the words ‘Amla Legend’. I was not sure what it was about but I also did not want to spoil for myself by using the power of google. So, I patiently waited to see what the launch had in store for us.
The Intellectual Property lawyer in me is always excited when I hear about a new innovation. And when it comes to beauty and hair products I have become keen, because like every other woman I also want to always look good.
A brief history about Dark and Lovely products. This line of hair products is under the ambit of SoftSheen Carson Laboratories; The leading Advanced Research on African Hair and Skin. (My humble opinion). The company has been in existence for over 100 years since they introduced their first product Magic. Since then they have been setting precedence on innovation centered around African hair. In 1972, they launched their first line of hair colour products for African hair and in 1978, the first no-lye hair relaxer for African hair. This enabled women to make their hair at home and salons stopped being mandatory.
These innovations were created long long before I was born. So, I really did not think about what it meant for us women. Even when I relaxed my hair for the first time, I did not reflect about it as much as I do now. All I knew them was, my hair was manageable and I could comb it every day; a big deal for any African woman thank to Dark and Lovely’s Beautiful Beginning. My mum always went on about this product and its presence in the Kenyan market was and still is very strong.
Before the unveiling of the product at the launch, I constantly wondered, what new thing would they be introducing for our kind of hair. When the moment came, the introduction was… ‘Have you ever wondered what is the secret behind the long silky, shiny hair women of Indian descent boast?’ Well, of course I have! When I was young, I always wished for my hair to be long and silky like the women we would watch in the Bollywood flicked aired on KTN in the early nineties. Wishful thinking!
The Secret is Out…Amla oil! Amla is an Indian Gooseberry. This fruit in Hindi is knows as the ‘sustainer’; where the goodness of prosperity presides. This new Amla Legend relaxer and range of hair products has the combining power of Amla Oil and an Oil Delivery System to keep the hair soft, shiny and bouncy! Words every woman wants her hair to be associated with.
This got me very excited I must admit more so because I can relate with the challenges of maintaining African hair. The best part of the presentation; the case studies of 8 Kenyan women. 4 of which we viewed on a video two weeks before the launch. Why two weeks? The product promises to undo 2 years of damage on hair in just two weeks.
The proof of success lies in the examination of the evidence, so says the lawyer I am. I could not resist to approach two of the models/ case studies to see and feel their hair for myself and of course talk to them a bit about their experience, especially the lady who prior to Amla Legend had ridiculously coarse African hair like mine.
After seeing for myself the testimony of the case studies/ models. I am very eager to try this product for myself. It comes with its own base and a range of accompanying products and promises no scalp burns. I am sold. The passion by the L’Oreal East Africa team in their presentation on this product is part of it but the proof in the evidence was everything. Now, I have to try it for myself.
I have never been excited about an innovation like I am his time. Perhaps because it has happened in my time or perhaps it is because of the promise. Let us wait and see.
I knew that when L’Oreal hit the East African market it would be a wonderful space for us to discover and get our hands on awesome beauty innovations but I did not fathom that it would be this exciting.
There are other lines of hair products in the market but Dark and Lovely is the ‘Safaricom’ in the world of hair and beauty. They understand the power of branding and have remained heavy weights in the East African markets.
I am now looking forward to more beauty innovations and patents; they honestly do make the world go round. And in this regard, for us African women, it makes a whole lot of difference.
Let us keep on inventing!