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Kohl’s Unveils Curly “Ghetto Fab” Wig for Halloween

Avatar • Oct 18, 2010

For those who are unaware, Kohls is a major American department store. They revealed this “Ghetto Fab” (their words, not mine) wig for Halloween that makes you look like.…. you’re natural? The tag line is “The disco-inspired Afro style of this adult wig makes it perfect for your festive outfit.”

I love the way they conflate “disco”, “festive” and “Afro” with ghetto. o_O When I think “Ghetto Fab” I think candy-colored weave… not a curly head of hair. This was clearly conceived by someone who has no clue about black culture.

At the end of the day, I looked at all this with a mystified expression and asked myself, “Who does this?”

What are your thoughts?

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Brwnskinbella84
10 years ago

I find this offensive. Was “Afro curly wig” too simplistic?!

iri9109
iri9109
10 years ago

wow. and the wig is cute! makes me wanna see it in real life…but ghetto fab???? c’mon son…that is so wrong…the wig looks fab! but ghetto? 1st to me ghetto is an attitude, and it describes certain actions…but how is a wig that looks like regular natural hair considered ghetto? surely not all women with this type of hair are ghetto.

by the name i thought the wig would have 50–11 different colors and be half spiked and half laying to the side all 27-piece-esque…

i’m insulted.

Taharqa
Taharqa
10 years ago

::sigh::

2 steps forward = 6 steps back

L. Michelle
10 years ago

I am offended. I already don’t shop there much and after this, I don’t think I will at all.

I blogged a little about it:
http://www.myhairisme.com/2010/10/calling-kohls-out-wtf.html

Jasmine S
Jasmine S
10 years ago

Wow! As a young, African American woman who has natural hair & wears the curly afro quite often, I find it tasteless & offensive. Natural hair shows pride in your culture & for me it is a platform to say that I do not have to confine myself to America’s standard of beauty. Black is beautiful

Keychee
Keychee
10 years ago

Agreed @Brwnskinbella84… Its one thing to be a wig, which is fine, but to title the product “Ghetto Fab Wig”… actually its a contradiction… to be “Ghetto” is not synonymous with “Fab” … I’m just confused all the way.

Robby
10 years ago

What the hell? This is ridiculous. I want the name of the copywritter who is responsible for this.

missason
missason
10 years ago

This is crazy. Seriously, crazy. I had no idea hair could have a socio-economic status. I just posted this link to facebook, as well as commented on the Kohl’s Wall (we’ll see how long it stays up there) and plan to write a letter to customer service. I had no idea hair could have a socio-economic status.

Chantel
10 years ago

All bull aside I think they totally missed the mark with the name of this wig… Then again since Kohl’s sells multiple products from different manufacturers as well as their own brands I can honestly say that this does not convince me that I shouldn’t shop there. It only demonstrates their lack of understanding how to effectively market this product. I mean you have to think about who the target market for this wig is (people without our various hair types who could care less what the name is). PS this kindof reminds me of the whole Foxy Cleopatra look Beyonce… Read more »

Vonnie
10 years ago

NONE of the ghetto girls I know rock natural hair, and none that I’ve seen on the south side of chicago who’d be considered ghetto do either. A multi color, gelled down, spiked, waterfall, finger waves, rooster ponytail on the other hand.……fried died and laid to the side YES…afro? no

but still, how offensive is that? Ghetto fab.…because it’s curly and in a headband? how is that ghetto fab?

http://www.socialitedreams.com/

v.c.
v.c.
10 years ago

There are a lot of afro/dreadlock wigs out there for halloween (which is kinda offensive enough as it is), but to call it “ghetto”? Wow.

N
N
10 years ago

I just looked up their number and called and complained:
Corporate Headquarters
Kohl’s Department Stores
N56 W17000 Ridgewood Drive
Menomonee Falls, WI 53051

Phone: (262) 703‑7000

Lori
Lori
10 years ago

I don’t get offended my much but I find this to be a very negative association with natural black/afro hair. I want to sign a petition to change the name!

CRK
CRK
10 years ago

I actually left a comment on the page (I used the review feature to do this). Seriously, I need their marketing department to do better. I am rarely offended by racial issues but because this one actually did offend me (with the term ghetto and afro in the same sentence) I felt like I should probably say something).
Maybe if enough of us say something they’ll rename it. They need to.

Melissa
10 years ago

The wig is cute but I find it to be offensive. It’s as if they are mocking curly afro hair. Not only did they call it “ghetto” but they put it on a white model. What would make someone think that having an afro is ghetto?

binks
binks
10 years ago

Um.…what is ghetto about it. Hell my hair looks like that sometimes and I’ am far from “ghetto” that is a damn shame like really and the sad thing is they probably didn’t know they offended a lot of people or if they did they simply didn’t care. I think the wig is cute but I wish people would stop using the term “ghetto” incorrectly, a ghetto is a place or state of mind not what one look like..smh

Shones
10 years ago

oh noooo… Kohl’s, WHY? They have great sales and I really like the Daisy Fuentes line of clothing, but this is just ridiculous. They should have asked us. We could come up 20 alternative names, easy!

Fluffy Curly Wig
Bouncy Flouncy Wig
Big Perm Wig
Fluffy Fine Wig

Adriii
Adriii
10 years ago

How about we write them reviews? I just submitted mine, titled “I would suggest renaming this product.” My message:

Disco-inspired Afro” does not equal “ghetto fab.” This name choice is the equivalent of me calling a straight blond wig “trailer park fab.” How about “70s fro” or “curly fro?” Even “disco fro?”

The site says “Please note, it may take up to 72 hours for your review to appear on Kohls.com or any social network you have selected.” We’ll see how they respond.

Additional comments would probably help! Just Google “Khol’s Ghetto fab wig”

Drea
10 years ago

This item was made by ignorant white people for ignorant white people.

sybil
sybil
10 years ago

FB is on FIYAH! I got my friends OTP as I type this…such stupidity should not be allowed to even EXIST

Bri
Bri
10 years ago

I’m with Robby. Someone needs to explain this nonsense.
Ghetto, festive, disco?? What? I wear my hair like that often…and it’s neither about ghetto-ness nor disco festivities for me.

honeybrown1976
honeybrown1976
10 years ago

I think it’s a seriously misbegotten attempt at being hip. Often times, whites (let’s be serious, we know it’s them) use slang that’s contextually inappropriate for them (e.g. ghetto fab). When people of color use phrases toward each other, we know the when, why, who, what, where, and how to apply them. The light bulb never goes on for whites when they culturally appropriate such phrasing.

In other words, they don’t know a damn thing about slang that they do not invent and should not use it.

NoirCerise
NoirCerise
10 years ago

Shoot that wig is CUTE.…now the name of it is ignorant.…they don’t call the straight hair hippy looking hair “trailer trash hair” so whoever came up with this is extemely ignorant.…

That being said.…I’m on the way to Kohls to get me one! 🙂

Cosmolude
Cosmolude
10 years ago

I commented on another site about this and the name of this wig is offensive. I think it’s actually the name the manufacturer gave the wig, not just Kohls (not that it makes it an better). If you google “Ghetto Fab wig”, there are other retailers that sell it with that name. I have seen this same wig sold by other Halloween store retailers but it’s called an ‘afro wig’. I don’t know why anyone would look at it and call it a “ghetto fab” wig. If I saw someone wearing it, I would just think that it was a… Read more »

Oyan
Oyan
10 years ago

Wow. So offensive. ‘Mainstream’ culture up to their old tricks. I have no words to express the sinking feeling this gave me when I saw the title. Just a feeling of sadness; which is the objective.

am
am
10 years ago

ditto..to all the comments. Offended, insulted, annoyed!!!
who’d they run this by before it came to market???

sandra
sandra
10 years ago

My thought is that we let any media folks we know on nation wide news know how we feel and they should cover this story. Each person needs to contact our sisters and brothers of color at the major outlets: CNN, MSNBC et. all now.

Cherie
10 years ago

Yeah…that’s terrible. I’m very offended. Ghetto? Really? Wow…I don’t know what more to say. It’s sad, actually

Jessica
Jessica
10 years ago

I rock a curly ‘fro (though not nearly as big…YET) but I was so bothered by this that after reading, I immediately went to the Kohl’s customer service website and wrote a letter. I really think the company should reconsider the name and/or availability of this item. I am urging everyone to do the same.

A
A
10 years ago

Wow…I just bought this wig yesterday for my costume (lol @ chantels commnet. That’s who I’m dressing up as) and I DIDn’t get it from Kohl’s (I got it from a local costume store). The name is blatantly ignorant,yes, but it’s a freakin’ Halloween costume wig. I can understand being upset at the way they chose to label it because they could’ve been smarter, but to take it any more seriously than that is beyond me.

Shanhai
Shanhai
10 years ago

Yeah I definitely wrote a letter…how dare they????Aren’t we beyond caricaturing cultures and differences? I need for them to have some sense and sensitivity…disgusted

Jenny
Jenny
10 years ago

NOT GHETTO! JUST CURLY! Jeebus! Why didn’t they just say “minstrel wig”

FurryCoconut
FurryCoconut
10 years ago

I just called and complained.

TrendySocialite
10 years ago

I just sent an email as well. This is just ridiculous. And I won’t be spending one red cent in their store. Not that I spent any money in there anyway, but you insult my hair texture and think I’m going to support you?!?!?! You must be smoking! I suggest that the natural hair community consider a “selective shopping” campaign. We may not get them to change, but they know that we know they are shady.

Monisola
Monisola
10 years ago

I WENT TO THE WEBSITE AND EMAILED THEM AS WELL! I was disgusted

Leo the Yardie Chick
Leo the Yardie Chick
10 years ago

It’s gotten to the point where I’ve grown numb to these shenanigans, but still. ‘Ghetto Fab’? *le sigh*

Andrea Reese
Andrea Reese
10 years ago

Unbelievably offensive! If everyone posting here sends a letter to Kohls, they might listen. Here’s the address:
Kohl’s Department Stores
Corporate Headquarters
N56 W17000 Ridgewood Drive
Menomonee Falls, WI 53051

Shreveport
Shreveport
10 years ago

I am slightly offended by the wig. I believe it is far from ghetto. They may want to re-think the name of the wig.

JG
JG
10 years ago

Don’t get mad, get direct.

Corporate Headquarters
Kohl’s Department Stores
N56 W17000 Ridgewood Drive
Menomonee Falls, WI 53051

Phone: (262) 703‑7000
Kohl’s Department Stores
Vicki Shamion
Vice President of Public and Community Relations
262–703-1464/ Vicki.Shamion@kohls.com

LB
LB
10 years ago

Hi all…I called Khol’s corporate at about 10a today. I just called back (at about 3:30p EST) and they are in the process of removing this item from their website. I found out that this product was not an item directly related to Khol’s, it’s from a distributor. I pointed out to them that they have four pages worth of wigs, and its unfortunate that of those dozens of wigs, this one is the only one named so derogatorily. I was apologized to profusely on both phone calls. I think they ‘get it’. I assured the rep that I was… Read more »

Jones
Jones
10 years ago

I just called the corporate office. So unfortunate that this cute wig has to be titled in such a derogatory manner. I’m wondering if they would consider putting up a long blonde wig and calling it the “White Trash” wig. I’m guessing they won’t. Why? Because people would find it offensive, go figure.

Corporate office 262.703.7000
Ask for marketing or advertising for internet.

summer-daze
summer-daze
10 years ago

So, ladies, I called corporate & the rep said they’re taking it off by the end of the day. She seemed as though she was offended as well.

Alisha
10 years ago

Are they for real? I’m going to call and complain. Ridiculous!

Krys
Krys
10 years ago

WTW.…Ghetto? Yes, I’m offended! They are basically saying that the curly afro is some how ghetto. What is their definition of ghetto?

b.
b.
10 years ago

THEY AREN’T THE ONLY ONES.

b.
b.
10 years ago

Sorry about that. THEY AREN’T THE ONLY ONES! Do a Google Shopping search for “ghetto fab wig” and you will see others, a black colored one and a blond one. ALL of them are equally disturbing…ESPECIALLY since they are actually kinda cute w/o that crazy name.

Who is the manufacturer?????

CHBK
CHBK
10 years ago

I just called to complain and was told that it’s going to be removed. I’ll check back later to see if that was actually done. This is ridiculous!!!

Alisha
10 years ago

I linked to this story… thanks for sharing. And it’s starting to eat at me. I showed co-workers and they were like, “Girl, that kind of looks like your hair.” And it does. I’m not laughing.

aiych
aiych
10 years ago

I asked if they would like someone to come out with a blond wig and call it the “white-trash porn star d**k‑sucking whore” wig. I could’ve used some restraint and tact, but then again so could they.

aiych
aiych
10 years ago

blonde wig as in caucasian style…

jan
jan
10 years ago

Hey Guys! Its not from Kohls! Its some California company that has it all over the internet!

This is the contact:

California Costume Collections, Inc.
210 South Anderson Street
Los Angeles, CA 90033

T 323 262‑8383

Its on amazon, sears, buy.com, all over the place!

Jones
Jones
10 years ago

California Costume Collections, Inc.
210 South Anderson Street
Los Angeles, CA 90033

T 323 262‑8383
F 323 262‑3561
E ccc@californiacostumes.com

Shall we?

chicconsumerr7
chicconsumerr7
9 years ago
Reply to  Jones

Yup!

Lissie
Lissie
10 years ago

For those who wrote letters and called, thanks for the feedback ladies! @ LB, I’m not surprised that the item did not come directly from Kohl’s. I’m curious as to who is the actual distributor? They also need to get the message that the title wasn’t cool. @Leo the Yardie Chick, I feel ya! I can’t say I’m offended.…I’m more confused about the distributors definition of “ghetto fab”. A friend of mine actually has natural hair + color like the wig’s. At the end of the day, this ish is getting so old! If it’s not a wig being called… Read more »

iri9109
iri9109
10 years ago

well it says its not longer available on the kohls site…and it was an internet exclusive (according to them) so i doubt you’ll find it in kohl’s stores…its still being sold all over the net though

Ms Sassy
10 years ago

its actually quite offensive hmph!

Jones
Jones
10 years ago

A representative from Kohl’s called me back to say the ad is being removed (as others have been told). She was very apologetic (of course), and said that Kohl’s should have modified the name, and is at fault for not considering the implications. I told her I thought the wig was adorable, and it was sad that such a derogatory message was being sent to young children whose natural hair was like this. blah, blah, blah, yaddi yaddi yadda. Regardless of how they constantly make it seem like we’re offended by everything, I feel like in these instances we have to… Read more »

Theresa
Theresa
10 years ago

What the hell??? So not key

aJwitaFrO
10 years ago

this was all wrong and a big mess.. the post says it right, whoever named and described this wig has NO CLUE about black culture at all

MissyD
MissyD
10 years ago

Why do we still live in a society where people would think this would be okay?

EbonyPearl
EbonyPearl
10 years ago

Uhh, I wear my hair like that… to my job… in corporate America… for years. I’m almost at a loss for words because I’m not understanding. Wow… a fro is ghetto… wow. Just, wow.

chicconsumerr7
chicconsumerr7
9 years ago
Reply to  EbonyPearl

+1 I am a little raw on this issue at the moment anyway. I just had a 30-something Moroccan man try to educate me, a Black American lady and attorney with ten years of experience in the court room and beyond, on why an afro is not professional or appropriate for legal work. I have worn one (or some natural variation) every day of my career and had no problems. He only knew I was an attorney and because I look quite young assumed I was fresh off the turnip truck and in need of his “guidance.” I had to… Read more »

Bethany
Bethany
10 years ago

I just went to their website and the pic is still up but it says that the item is not available. I’ll check again in the morning and see if they live up to their word.

On a slightly different note, this can be used as a marketing opportunity for the natural community. If Kohl’s received a significant number of complaints from the natural community they could see that we are a force to be reckoned with.

LB
LB
10 years ago

The wig has been REMOVED from their site!!! The people have spoken and our voices were heard!! This is a significant victory…I feel exhilarated :o)

am
am
10 years ago

Thank God for the “I love my hair” song on Sesame Street. The irony is this song was created by a white guy who has an adopted daughter from Ethiopia. Can’t paint everyone with the same brush!

HolyGhost Girl
HolyGhost Girl
10 years ago

Ladies, I will be calling Kohl’s Corporate Offices in the morning to complain.

Kohls Corporate Headquarters
262 703‑7000

Majilyric
10 years ago

I emailed the costume company this Hello, I am emailing you in regards to the wig you call “Ghetto Fab”. You probably have gotten several complaints over the title of this wig already, so I really don’t want to repeat a complaint with “I am offended”. Rather I would just like to say during Holloween people like to dress up from ugly scary monsters to sexy Arabian desert princesses. Though I understand the sensitivity, I don’t neccesarily feel dressing up as “ethnic” characters is bad… we have all dreamed about being Native American warriors, Latin salsa dancers, English royalty, African… Read more »

Jenny
Jenny
10 years ago

My daughter (age 3) rocks the mini version of that ‘do saw the picture and now she wants a headband.
😛

Vaughn R.
10 years ago

Hi all– I just want to thank everyone for being so proactive in getting this matter resolved! I believe I was actually the one who discovered the wig on Kohl’s– a friend and I were browsing the site for halloween costumes a few days ago and found it, and immediately started sending emails, writing facebook and twitter rants, as well as sending news blasts to certain blogs and media outlets. Never did my friend and I imagine our efforts would snowball into such an event, but I am glad it did. People need to realize that things like this ARE… Read more »

chicconsumerr7
chicconsumerr7
9 years ago
Reply to  Vaughn R.

+1
Thanks for sharing!

Rosie
Rosie
10 years ago

Thank you guys for not just complaining but taking action!!!
I am going to email the actual distributor as they are the ones who should be changing the name. Thanks guys for the info

A
A
10 years ago

Google white trash costume wigs…they do exist.

Kitty
10 years ago

@ A

You’re right. That is just as bad. I always thought the whole racial stereotype costume was really bad. Like a few years ago the “illegal alien” costume. I think the Jesus costume (used in an offensive manner) is bad to.

JG
JG
10 years ago

@Majilyric that was a great letter. Here’s part of what I wrote them. A bit stinging, but I do believe that no only hitting where it really hurts (the pocket) is necessary, but helping people to understand the equivalent if it were vice versa is important as well. …While it’s understandable that you market your items based on what some potential buyers might want to use them for, to show such insensitivity and lack of social regard is unacceptable. It’s also very telling that there are no “Trailer Trash”, “Pillsbury Dough Girl Dry” “Stringy and Oily” or “Useless Mall Rat” wigs… Read more »

jjay
jjay
10 years ago

Thanks to all of you, and Vaughn R…Thank you sister, I find this very offensive. I’ll be sending a some emails…it’s still online with the same title, I just googled it !

Coco
Coco
10 years ago

You know I saw this a few weeks ago when I did a search on curly afro textured hair and ALL of these halloween sites popped up. It’s sad which is an understatement it makes it difficult for so many of us to accept our hair in it’s natural state. Not that it should make a difference but it is still hard to try to come off as having a “professional” image if you decide to wear an afro to work or to an interview especially if this is the image or thought that comes to mind that natural curls… Read more »

J Co
10 years ago

I am offended.

Jones
Jones
10 years ago

Not to go back to old stuff (from Monday), but I just found a statement from buyseasons.com — the company that is shipping out all of these wigs — and the CEO seems to believe it’s ok to sell this tastelessly named wig. So much so that he says, “ ‘Ghetto fabulous’ is a slang term. It is not a derogatory term. It’s used by the younger generation,” Getz said.” He would know, right? WRONG.

Check out the article.
http://www.jsonline.com/business/105402358.html

Deena
10 years ago

I can’t even say I’m surprised as I’ve reached the point where I am never surprised when black people become the butt of some corporate joke, just saddened that it keeps happening over and over again. I don’t see anything in that wig that would make it a “costume”. Its a nice style. By putting it in a costume category- even worse, by labelling it “ghetto” all that Kohl’s have done is given people another excuse to try to invalidate our natural beauty.

Jazz Tay
Jazz Tay
10 years ago

WTFrizz.…. unacceptable

Afro Man
Afro Man
10 years ago

Bump this!

Everyone needs to forward this to ALL media outlets. Let’s show this country that racism, and stereotyping is well alive.

The more we complain, the easier it is to prove our point: America was founded upon racism, and it will always be about race and ignorance; the good old boys pass down their ways to their fulture generations.

Janna
10 years ago

I sent out a plethora of letters and email. Hopefully we will all make a big difference. I think one of the best things we can do it to wear our natural hair in it’s natural state regularly, from bantu knots, to braids, to braid outs and buns. Just stop allowing them to influence us with their limited sensibilities.

Tabatha
Tabatha
6 years ago

Ghetto Fab?! What’s ghetto about it. They could easily call it Disco wig to not offend anyone.

Midwestnija
Midwestnija
6 years ago

It is offensive that they would use the name ‘ghetto fab’ for a wig that looks like our natural hair instead of something more innocuous like ‘curly wig’. I do have to say, though, that the wig is very cute. It’s just sad they would look at a hairstyle as nice as that and see it as something to demean.

Lucky
Lucky
6 years ago

Looks like Kohl’s should be the target of a letter-writing campaign and some unwanted publicity! Is the “trailer (get ‘er done)” wig next to the “ghetto fab” wig?

I didn’t mean to offend, just making a point but how many more times will my people be offended because of thoughtlessness?

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