Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Naturals in Advertisements

I've noticed I've been seeing more naturals in commercials on TV. Which is great!! The next time you're watching TV take note of the many naturals in commercials. This had me wondering if naturals are as readily depicted in print advertisements?? So, I started searching the web for print advertisements of naturals. What I have noticed is that major corporations are starting to depict more naturals in their advertisements such as the GAP and Old Navy. But what is amazing is the lack of naturals in companies that cater to Blacks and were created by Blacks. Examples of these companies are Roca Wear, Sean John, Dereon. This is just an observation.

Please note: I have not seen all print advertisements by all companies, which is why I will keep this as a continuing post. I will continue to research the availability of naturals in print advertisements with all companies. I will then post on my further observations.

This photo is of an old Coca Cola Ad. The hair of the women in this post is straight and flowing in the wind. I wonder how the current print ads by Coca Cola depict black women??

This is a photo of a print advertisement by Roca Wear (a company created by Jay Z and Damon Dash in 1999). Notice the lack of naturals in this advertisement. Or I should say the lack of curls, coils, waves, etc. I would love to see a head full of curls in this photo. I wonder if Zoe Saldana (on the right) has naturally wavy/curly hair...she is of Dominican/Puerto Rican descent.

This print advertisement is by Sean John (a company created by Sean Combs "Diddy") which features the beautiful Lauren London and Cassie. However, we have the typical/popular bone straight hair. I believe both of these ladies have naturally curly hair. Lauren London is African American and Cassie is Mexican/African American.

I love the diversity of the Old Navy print advertisements. When you initially look at this picture you get a feeling that Old Navy caters to people of every nationality. This is great b/c it doesn't limit their company. Also, I love that they chose to show the black woman in all her glory in these photos. They are rocking their natural coils. The women look so beautiful and seem like they are comfortable in their skin and beauty given to them by God.

Gap is the company that owns Old Navy. From looking at their print advertisements we see that they project their appreciation of the black woman and her natural beauty in their print advertisements--just as Old Navy does. I absolutely ADORE the first photo of Lorna Simpson (an African American artist and photographer) and her daughter Zora. This just melts my heart to see their crown of glory. The second photo reminds me of the Old Navy print advertisements b/c of the diversity and the black woman on the right with her natural coils.

***As previously noted, this will be a continuing thread as I find/research more pics of print advertisements from these companies and more...


  1. This is a really good post, thought-provoking and full of insight. I love the visual aids! Also, it is very interesting to note how most of your black-owned companies or black-targeted companies don't feature women with natural hair. But sometimes the people who look down on blacks the most are blacks themselves.

  2. I know right, Alison! It's funny that I essentially said the same thing you just said on your blog. LOL

  3. Dear Roca Wear,
    Your competition is just as strong as GAP(GPS STOCK SYMBOL) or RALPH LAUREN (RL STOCK SYMBOL)
    or ABERCROMBIE AND FITCH (ANF STOCK SYMBOL) or AMERICAN EAGLE (AEO STOCK SMYBOL), do you think think in the near future ROCA WEAR will have its own "STOCK SYMBOL?"