Hey, Quick Question: Why Is There Drama With Mielle Organics?

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It started on TikTok, of course.


Welcome to our column, “Hey, Quick Question,” where we investigate seemingly random happenings in the fashion and beauty industries.

Before the year ended, Alix Earle — the internet’s latest mega-influencer, who gained almost 2 million TikTok followers in a month — posted about her best 2022 Amazon purchases. Among a selfie light, pre-workout and Ariana Grande’s Cloud perfume was Mielle Organics‘ Rosemary Mint Oil, which is said to encourage hair growth, among other benefits. 

“I’ve only been using this for a little over a month, and I’ve already seen tremendous hair growth,” Earle said in her video

This is where the drama began.

Mielle Organics is one of the fastest-growing companies in the textured hair-care space. There are increasing but still-limited options for curly and coily hair types on the market, and the Black-owned brand has become a staple for many Black customers since it launched in 2014. It’s also not new to virality: Its Rosemary Mint Oil has been widely shared and raved about online by Black creators. But this new fan base brought on by Earle (read: white women) is a cause for concern for some of its longtime fans — and they’re sharing those concerns on social media. 

First, there’s the possibility that the Rosemary Mint Oil might sell out completely, when there are already a lesser amount of products available for textured hair. Fans have gone so far as to (hilariously) warn people against buying the product, claiming (fabricated) side effects.

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Some then worried that Earle exposing the brand to white women (who usually have straight or wavy hair) would eventually lead Mielle to change its formula, in order to appeal to this new user. There’s a precedent here: We’ve seen some textured hair brands reformulate products once they realized white customers were buying them, inevitably making it less effective on curly and coily hair — like SheaMoisture famously did.

The Rosemary Mint Oil is formulated for thicker, curly hair. With straight-haired newcomers diluting it in order to make it work, Mielle customers worried the brand could follow suit. Founder Monique Rodriguez, however, spoke out to say she has no plans to change formulas. 

“There have been a few recent comments posted on this topic, but I can personally guarantee you that we are not making any ingredient changes,” Rodriguez wrote. “I also wanted to come here first to assure you directly that we have no plans to change the formula for Rosemary Mint Oil or any of our products.” 

Some TikTok users pointed out that this…expanding audience could ultimately be a good thing for Mielle Organics.

“At the end of the day, they are a company, and their goal is to move product,” @prettycritical said in her video about the situation. “If [there is a run on the product], that’s information they’re then able to show investors to say, ‘Hey, our company is growing, is being successful.’ And then they can get that investment money and scale up.”

At the very least, the vetted $10 oil doesn’t seem to be sold out online just yet. 

Please note: Occasionally, we use affiliate links on our site. This in no way affects our editorial decision-making. 

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