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Was the Writing on the Wall? Carol’s Daughter Companies File for Bankrupty

Avatar • Apr 25, 2014

carols daughter

 

Yesterday, news spread like wildfire from sources from The Wall Street Journal to Clutch Magazine that companies under the Carol’s Daughter name had filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy Protection.

WHAT?!

You read correctly. Companies under the Carol’s Daughter banner are folding. To paint a clearer picture, it should be understood that there are several companies under Carol’s Daughter, and the primary focus of the Chapter 11 filing is on those companies under the umbrella of CD (Carol’s Daughter) Stores, LLC — of which parent company Carol’s Daughter Holdings, LLC is the 100% owner. Another point of clarity: Carol’s Daughter Holdings, LLC is not filing for bankruptcy. Essentially, the Carol’s Daughter Stores umbrella and the companies underneath it (each store was a separate company) filed for Chapter 11 in an effort to close their doors permanently.

Store_Carols-Daughter_State-St_IL

So what exactly happened?

I reached out to a Carol’s Daughter rep, and received this response;

We are happy to report that Carol’s Daughter did not file for bankruptcy. To focus more attention on our third party retailers we made a decision to close five of our seven free-standing retail stores through a bankruptcy process. Our products will continue to be in over 2,000 independent retail outlets nationwide with more exciting launches to come that we can’t wait to share with you.

But reporting from the Wall Street Journal provides more detail;

According to Chief Financial Officer John Elmer, most of the Carol’s Daughter stores across the nation had been unprofitable since 2010 (stick a pin right there, we’ll be back to revisit this in a second). Prior to the bankruptcy filing, 5 of the 7 Carol’s Daughter stores had been closed and 29 of 42 employees were terminated. Chief Executive Officer (stick another pin right there) Richard Dantas stated, “Today’s filing in no way reflects the parent company’s healthy financial situation and is a part of its plan to grow the brand through national retail outlets.” Dantas also pointed out that Carol’s Daughter products are available in a number of major retail locations nationwide and the company is refocusing its distribution strategy to focus more on these retailers.

As it currently stands, Carol’s Daughter products are available online and on the ground at major retailers including Target, Ulta, Sephora, and even the Home Shopping Network.

Now that we’ve got the technicalities out of the way, let’s have a candid discussion about what’s REALLY happening. I remember when Los Angeles got its own Carol’s Daughter store in Westfield Culver City (formerly Fox Hills Mall) during the late 2000s. It was an exciting time — an affirmation of our value (consumer dollars) and a source of inspiration and empowerment (supporting black-owned business). I remembered many trips to the mall, and seeing ladies very excited to support the store. However, as time went on, the fanfare dwindled and the landscape changed. In fact, when I went to the mall last weekend, the Carol’s Daughter store was closed.

In digging around online to put together this article, what shocked me the most is that Lisa Price is not the CEO of the company she founded. Price is not even the owner, for that matter. Everyone knows that she teamed up with Steve Stoute and was able to solicit millions of  dollars in investments from the likes of Jay‑Z, Will and Jada Smith. As a result, Price surrendered an unspecified ownership stake in the company she created. A little more prodding online produces all sorts of information and records from the likes of Businessweek, that displays Lisa Price as only Founder and President of Carol’s Daughter. In fact, Carol’s Daughter Holdings, LLC (the parent company) is owned by Pegasus Capital Advisors, L.P. Now, I don’t have an MBA or anything but the words “owned by” are pretty crystal clear. When you don’t own things, you have no say in what is done with them.

Is this where all that “polyethnic” jargon came from?

The messaging of the entire Carol’s Daughter brand changed — starting with the 2011 campaign to change the color widen the appeal of the product line. Banners and posters featuring Selita Ebanks, Solange Knowles, and Cassie were rolled out. A brand of products formerly marketed to only black women, now adopted a “polyethnic” scope based upon updated census data (that indicated a rise in women that identified as bi or multi-racial). In essence, it virtually abandoned the clientele that built the foundation on which the business stands. Droves of black women pumped the brakes on their support of Carol’s Daughter, feeling abandoned and maligned by the new campaign for colorless beauty. Formula changes and price hikes aside, many black women continued to support Carol’s Daughter because they believed in the black-owned brand. However, Price’s feelings of “…perpetuating the idea that Carol’s Daughter is a brand for black Women with natural hair alone can be limiting,” coupled with the new marketing campaign, was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

Fast forward to 2014– the closest thing I can find to a brand ambassador for Carol’s Daughter is Naptural85, whom many naturals of all walks adore. Long gone are the celebrity spokespeople — they’ve been replaced with 3 models that are a slight improvement over the previously mentioned ladies in terms of diversity. Products like Hair Milk, Margeurite’s Magic, and Mimosa Hair Honey are sporting banners that say “same size, $5 less”. It almost seems like Carol’s Daughter is learning their lesson in biting the hands that fed them. But is it too late? I can’t help but noticing that Carol’s Daughter selections at places I frequent (like Ulta and Target) are never really moving, or out of stock. But, maybe that’s just an Los Angeles thing.

Carol’s Daughter might have been a pioneering brand in natural hair, but the playing field is wide open. They’ve got tons of competition from brands who have successfully transitioned to major retailers or who have tons of online business coming in without compromising ingredient quality. Although they’re closing stores to focus on a distribution model that appears more in line with their goal to reach a broader consumer base, smaller brands like Cream and Coco are opening brick and mortar stores to expand and achieve the same end. Camille Rose Naturals, Alikay Naturals and Oyin Handmade made it to Target without alienating their customer base.

So what’s really going on over at Carol’s Daughter? Is it really about closing stores to focus on distributing to major retailers, or is this a sign of their struggle to stay relevant without the support of the customers that built the brand?

Weigh in, ladies! What are your thoughts? 

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About Christina Patrice

Born, raised, and living in Los Angeles, Christina is BGLH's resident transitioning expert and product junkie. In addition to loving all things hair, she is a fitness novice and advocate of wearing sandals year-round. For more information on transitioning, natural hair, and her own hair journey, visit maneobjective.com. Or, if you like pictures follow Christina on Instagram @maneobjective.

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Caramelcurls
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Caramelcurls

When I first went natural almost 2 and 1/2 years ago, I purchased a bunch of Carol’s Daughter products, and to be honest, I was not overly impressed with the line. The two products that I liked the most are the Loc Butter and the Mimosa Hair Honey. But when they run out (yes I stil have them), I never planned on repurchasing. There are just too many good products for naturals out there at a better price point that are just as effective, if not better.

Awa blue
Guest
Awa blue

I agree. Carol Daughter products were better than the Dark and Lovely and other mineral oil based cremes i used before, however now with Oyin and Alikay. I don’t feel the need to use them. I do however wish her the best with her business.

mlank64
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mlank64

There is not one product I’ve used from CD that works on my hair. Another thing is that as much as I love nap85 I’m surprised she signed on to endorse CD. I would of thought she would go for something more natural like terressential. I wonder if she knew there was trouble with the company.
I saw the founder on qvc not too long ago. I don’t remember any of the models being black. So much for expanding her customer base.

bri
Guest
bri

Naptural85 didn’t endorse CD. She only did commercial-like videos to show how to use them, but she’s never said whether she liked the products and she didn’t do any kind of review of the products on purpose.. I think she even did a video explaining her role in the whole thing, or that might’ve been on one of her vlogs (I can’t remember which one right now) but she has addressed that already on her channel.

Nappy4C Rocks
Guest
Nappy4C Rocks

When Nap85 signed on I was very surprised also…hmmm…I wonder if the company see YouTube as a way to the natural market?

Mo
Guest
Mo

I feel like I could’ve written this exact same comment! I bought the Hair Honey about two and a half years ago, and there’s still plenty left in the jar. I like it; it’s moisturizing, lightweight, smells great and you don’t need very much. HOWEVER, it wasn’t worth the $$ since there are plenty of other solid products out there with the same effects.

Tabatha
Guest
Tabatha

Wow, I’m kind of surprised. I mean I love the Marguerite’s magic cream. It really helped my hair while I was transitioning. But then I noticed that more and more sales and coupon codes was hitting my email, so I knew it was in trouble. I think Lisa Price made a huge mistake by allowing someone else to be the CEO. I only have a BA in Business, but I know that the reason why they don’t have another person on the adds is because she is technically the original face (other than Solange). I don’t think that anyone would… Read more »

niksmit
Guest
niksmit

When I first went natural about 14 years ago, this was the only natural hair care line I knew of it and it existed only in a Brooklyn storefront (now closed). A lot has changed since then and I haven’t touched a Carol’s Daughter product in years. I think the last time I bought one was shortly after the Harlem location opened (is it closed now) and I recall being disappointed in the product. The marketing mess came later, but that was just a nail in the coffin that already existed for our relationship. I read the blogs and boards… Read more »

LBell
Guest
LBell

Ditto. Back when there were just the two NYC locations I was a regular user of both the Healthy Hair Butter and the Mimosa Hair Honey. I also loved the scent of the Khoret Amen Hair Oil…maybe I was the only one who did, lol. I used it as a fragrance oil once I began going through my own kitchentician phase, abandoning CD products in favor of homemade ones. I never went back…

Now if they started selling the Khoret Amen Hair Oil separately again, I’d buy it in a heartbeat.

Natasha
Guest
Natasha

You’re absolutely right. The quality if the product changed tremendously. Do to the mass production she began adding ingredients that is not healthy for textured hair such as alcohol. I’ve been natural since 2000 also. I noticed the shampoo no longer removed the product build up on my scalp as it did in the past and the Black Vanilla leave in made my hair hard. I discontinued using her products for that reason. I’ve since found wonderful products that works with my hair and for my hair.

Sue
Guest
Sue

I am not surprised that Lisa Price is not listed as the owner of the company. I don’t have a business degree. most of what I know if from watching Shark Tank. Many times when an investor puts money in your business, you have to give up a certain stake. Now maybe whatever investment arrangement Lisa had also meant that she gave up alot of control or input in making decisions. I also don’t think that adopting a “polyethnic” approach is bad either. It’s a business–you want to sell to as many people as possible! In terms of the brand… Read more »

Elle
Guest
Elle

So, Alikay Naturals is at Target now? News I can use.

Nappy4C Rocks
Guest
Nappy4C Rocks

I like Alilkay Naturals , hope she does not change her formula in the products…hope this will be a lesson

Aspiring business woman
Guest
Aspiring business woman

I must admit I’ve never bought any of their products mainly because of that controversial campain and the fact that reviews on youtube were’nt that great. HOWEVER, this is a company created and run by a black woman who can inspire so many other black female. SO I hope they get back on the horse and fight for their company.

sara
Guest
sara

I have a friend that works in the corporate sector of Carol’s Daughter. Last year for my birthday she gave me a huge haul of products and that was the only time I tried them. I don’t think they went well with my hair. Most of the products are half finished in my product bin currently.

Sandra
Guest
Sandra

Not surprised. I recently started buying her products again after not really feeling her line. I, too, noticed the ‘widening’ of the brand and decided to step away and try others. I mean her products are/were pricy and exclusive (New York or expensive malls)..at least as I saw it. After stepping away for about 2 yrs, I recently purchased the “Black Current Vanilla” leave-in and a few butters and decided to reinvest in her products. Since the line lowered some of the prices, I decided to try again especially when I can get 10% online. Why pay full price, with… Read more »

Aspiring business woman
Guest
Aspiring business woman

*run: for many years at least

silkynaps
Guest
silkynaps

Now, that Carol’s Daughter has found a way to peddle its swill in the big box stores…i.e. Target…they no longer want the overhead that goes along with maintaining retail locations. To think the entire brand would fade into obscurity is just wishful thinking for some and a misunderstanding of economics 101 for others.

black nerd lover
Guest
black nerd lover

Yeh… but those stores have been unprofitable for 4 years o_0 I agree that the bankruptcy filing might have been a business strategy — but there’s no doubt that a huge arm of their business was straight failing.

Ro
Guest

Let me start by saying that is by far is the most informative post on the bankruptcy and you certainly got to a root of much of the problems behind the scene. I at one point worked for Carol’s Daughter and I will say that I think the brand spread itself too thin. Stocking and fulfillment was ALWAYS an issue and only got worse over time. I personally heard from women that supported her from the beginning that they were not pleased with the new marketing and the products had indeed changed in ways that they didn’t care for. I’m… Read more »

Mikki
Guest

This isn’t uncommon in the business industry. It has happened to a few black owned businesses think about Optimum. They are great when they run by the people who mainly support the business but then they get bought out by larger corporations who change things. Also, people tend to get greedy and try to grow too fast. I really hope the company is able to rebound after this.

Sabi
Guest
Sabi

Anyone willing and promote a horrid product, while ignoring the negative feedback will never get my support or sympathy. Plus I’d rather just make my own products. *shrugs* CD should have tried to link up somehow with Shea Moisture…they have been in the game since before I was born, and are still going strong as Nubian Heritage, AND Shea moisture…lmao…Meanwhile CD is bankrupt. They did what CD wanted and rebranded themselves successfully without compromising their quality (which really just stayed the same, didn’t improve or become degraded) This is why I lol’d when Naptural did those CD “commercials” like girl…why… Read more »

Shanna
Guest

Their products were horrible, expensive and then the market exploded with competition.

nylse
Guest

As someone originally from Brooklyn, I was proud and happy to hear of Carol’s Daughter and her products. I’ve tried several of the products, but ultimately the cost does not justify the product, and so I can’t support the product. It’s been about 5 years or more since I bought a CD product.
It may just be a necessary business move; I’m sure the business has exceeded what she expected.

Marra Joelle
Guest
Marra Joelle

Hmmmm.… I guess I don’t have a problem with a multi ethnic marketing strategy. I’m not going to pretend that if you want to make big money, you can do so on black dollars alone. We are a minority in this fine country. My main issues with CD come down to three key things: Price, Quality, Accessibility. 1. Price- If I’m going to pay $25 for a leave in conditioner, it better be made with the tears of a Unnicorn. CD has no unicorn tears in their product so there’s that. 2. Quality- I don’t like the ingredients for the… Read more »

black nerd lover
Guest
black nerd lover

But that’s the thing Marra, you CAN do it with black dollars alone. Just ask all the white-owned hair companies that are cashing in on black women. Ask NaturallyCurly.com — run for 16 years by 2 white women. Ask beauty supply owners. Ask weave manufacturers. It is one thing to acknowledge that America is increasing in multi-ethnic diversity. It is quite another to go out of your way to belittle your target audience. You don’t see Oyin or Shea Moisture distancing themselves from black women. And they’re doing just fine. Also, bi-racial women have been largely absorbed into the natural… Read more »

flouncingtart
Guest
flouncingtart

Black woman actually spend the most money on hair products, but are the least marketed to in the mainstream.

imnotasian
Guest
imnotasian

tears of a unicorn” lmao!

Rem
Guest
Rem

In 1996, my best friend and I trekked from Philly to a basement in a Brooklyn brownstone to get our Carol’s Daughter’s fix. The Khoret Amen oil and Healthy Hair Butter used to be awesome for my hair. The Healthy Hair Butter had to be refrigerated because it contained no preservatives. Then the formula changed and I had to move on. She opened a lot of doors for so many other natural hair lines. She inspired me to begin researching how oils and herbs interact with my hair. To me Lisa Price is a pioneer.

Shannon
Guest

I remember about 15 years ago being able to call the flagship store and talking to Lisa herself. The products were made in small batches in store. They were natural. She suggested for many products to refrigerate or use within a certain time frame. The smell was amazing and the packaging just beautiful. Jamaica Punch was my signature scent. I even found the flagship store and stocked up anytime we were in NY. Then came Jay — and ‘dem. The containers became plastic, the cost went up, most of the original scents gone, and the hair products are just not… Read more »

lv
Guest
lv

Yep. Then came the big shots

lv
Guest
lv

Never really a fan of the product line. I am however a fan of black owned enterprises and tried really hard to like some of the products. Purchased a shampoo from the line several months ago. Horrible. Passed it on to my 16 year old son. Even he asked if I had another shampoo. The line is no longer sold at Sephora and the other retailers carry only limited amounts which seem to sit on the shelf. I pray our other enterprising hairlistas (shescentit, koils by nature,shea moisture, etc. etc) learn a valuable lesson: maintain the integrity of the products,… Read more »

mary
Guest
mary

I tried CD in the past year and was not impressed. The prices are way too high and the scents very strong and irritating. In addition to that, they did noting for my 4C hair. What I didn’t return just won’t get used.

sandy
Guest
sandy

I don’t use her products, but I wish her the best.

Jane
Guest
Jane

Suave, Shea Moisture/Nubian Heritage are all readily available at many stores, so that was the death of my desire to have glamour brands like CD. The price point, the marketing flip, and the boom of the natural industry killed CD’s allure, especially as consumers became more educated. I just couldn’t understand why I should spend money on a mediocre product for a company that seemed interested in phasing out (or just duping) average black female consumers like myself.

nikki
Guest
nikki

You are absolutely right. CD was the hot thing when there weren’t many other options, but honestly the products are mediocre and the price point is high. I used the products many years ago before I knew any better but quickly learned there were much better and cheaper options from companies that really are black owned and specifically target black women with kinky textured hair.

Love JAH
Guest
Love JAH

Nubian Heritage is a high quality brand and they are very expensive…I’m not sure what all the gripe is about when most natural hair care products are sky high! Reason why I use garnier fructis…no hype just a product that works…most naturalistas on this page are whiny and miserable… Go ahead…thumbs down and have a blessed day! Lisa knew she couldn’t run a multimillion dollar business…she knows what she’s doing…and if you flip the opinion of most to a white business founder, for starters, ouidad, had the founder started with marketing only to whites, then once she saw there was… Read more »

Trini
Guest
Trini

Disheartening news. I wonder what kind of advice she received that would lead her to give up ownership? I liked the mimosa hair honey sample that I tried a few years ago, but the price point kept me from purchasing it. I suppose part of the polyethnic strategy was to expand to stores such as Macy’s (the one in Roosevelt Field, Long Island). Hope the company recovers from this.

Deedeemaha
Guest
Deedeemaha

To answer: I wonder what kind of advice she received that would lead her to give up ownership? JAy‑z, Will and Jada Smith. Solange Knowles. They (JZ and Smiths) associated her to the high rollers and rolled her right out of controlling position. Solange, put a stain on the company with her bad comments in regard to not wanting to be associated with the natural community. If they did not kill her, the final death stroke came with DIY. Yes, DIY’s can mix up a hair brew right out of their kitchen’s too. Don’t get me wrong. I love myself… Read more »

Satana
Guest
Satana

[img]https://bglh-marketplace.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/04/whocares.jpg[/img]

Belle
Guest
Belle

Well, What saddens me most is that she gave up ownership and creative control to people who evidently don’t give a damn about the customers that made them. I understand wanting to grow but at what cost? I don’t know what investors like Jay and co did other than put up money but was it impossible to find investors and CEOs who actually gave a damn? It’s like the people who took over had absolutely zero interest in the company other than making money any which way. I don’t know her background but I feel lik she was a small… Read more »

Lala
Guest
Lala

If I could thumbs you up 100times I would I think the only word I would have added would have been sale out yeah never be a sale out especially with your dream

cacey
Guest
cacey

Suave all day long. You can find it anywhere, get like, 16 oz. of the stuff for all of one or two bucks. aaaand, the best part, it actually does something for my hair. a lot of something. it works! and all of that for next to nothing. That said, i’ve never felt inclined to give these major expensive “natural” brands my money. there’s far too much competition out there, not only from startup or existing natural hair companies but also just from the mainstream brands that never get mentioned but which have existed for as long as they have… Read more »

bri
Guest
bri

FYI: Any Natural Hair product lines that move into Target are not going to be as good as they used to be…(CD hasn’t been good in AGES though so with them it doesn’t even matter lol) If any Natural hair products that used to be in small local natural hair shops and online only end up in Target(or Wal-mart or any big retail giant), you can already assume that they’ve changed over to more synthetic oils,extracts, and preservatives that will NOT react the same way the natural versions did with your hair.. So now that Alikay and Camille Rose are… Read more »

Dijah
Guest
Dijah

Thanks for warning us that some companies might be doing this, but I’m not sure about Camille Rose. I buy Camille Rose and Shea Moisture from Target, and I still feel that they are the same great quality.

bri
Guest
bri

if it still works for you then by all means please keep using it.
I do still use shea Moisture but that’s b/c they didn’t change their formula to cheaper ingredients.

Chandra
Guest
Chandra

I agree. To sell products more cheaply at these large retail giants, they almost have to compromise the quality using cheaply synthesized oils etc in place of more expensive all natural ingredients.

I don’t feel bad for CD because with the right leadership, marketing and branding as a company they can still be hugely successful. I do however, feel for Lisa Price, who decidedly allowed herself to be talked right out of her company.

MW
Guest
MW

I really wanted to try Oyin after I saw it so readily available.
Your advice is not to?
Is there any line out you’d currently recommend?

bri
Guest
bri

Oyin is one of the few that still does the same ingredients, plus they didn’t put their whole line in Target. 🙂
Curls is another one that was smart about it, they have two different versions of their products: Retail and Salon version.
Salon version is the original version.
All I can tell you is that it pays to look up the ingredients in the products and do a little research to see whether you’re getting the real deal then decide for yourself if you want to take the plunge anyway.

Jacky
Guest
Jacky

Great article, the writer really did her research. I’ve never used Carol’s daughter products but i wanted to use it before just to promote the Black-owned and natural hair promoting brand but didn’t because of the price. Now that i know the truth, i don’t think I’ll try it at all. Plus, i remember looking at one of their ads on curlynikki.com and going “What the heck!” because the African model didn’t look as if it was her own natural hair on her head and standing beside her was a white/mixed race model and both of them ‘s hairs looked… Read more »

Sarah
Guest
Sarah

I have never tried their products despite wanting to but i could never get past the ridiculous prices especially when the ingredients didn’t seem worth the price. I feel like CD was relevant in the beginning when there really weren’t products for black hair that wasn’t relaxed or pressed or weaved or anything of that nature. Even still it was an expensive alternative that made me feel like it was only obtainable by black women with money to spend. I never felt it was a brand for the average natural. And then CD just became irrelevant altogether. I rarely hear… Read more »

debra
Guest
debra

Your article is thorough, thank you! When she made the decision to gain celebrity status and sold her ownership stake, it was doom… The new vision for the organization may have left the key consumer base in the dust. The reputation is tarnished and I really wonder if the organization’s mission to remove unprofitable stores and revamp its distribution strategy will work since people have many many choices for natural hair care. For us, variety and choice is the best thing that could ever happen because Patene, Shea Moisture will work hard, keeping their products good and price affordable to… Read more »

Sophie
Guest
Sophie

It’s too bad to see a natural hair company struggling, but I actually just unsubscribed from their emails yesterday and put my reason down as “no longer use Carols Daughter products”. I’d just tried too many things that didn’t work for me and for the price it wasn’t worth it to keep trying products. I know some people love it, though, so hopefully they can re formulate some things and rebrand.

Prerna
Guest

I have never used these products, I get to know about some of the brands through your site.

corie davis
Guest
corie davis

i’m done using these products,did not know she soldout!

Saniel
Guest
Saniel

I remember seeing CD products in a little store in DC and saying I wanna try those one day, I was a year or two in the natural game. These were the original products when she was hungry for sales and happy to making products out her basement, just developing her company. I finally ordered a dried herbs conditioner tea rinse and a few samples and loved it. When I went back to order those products again I was told they were discontinued. That is where she lost me and was opening stores in Macy’s across the USA. The original… Read more »

Jess
Guest
Jess

I can attest to the change in product in CD over the years. I’ve heard about CD my entire life because their FIRST (and flagship, in my opinion) store on DeKalb ave in Brooklyn was down the block from my aunts house. I’ve always used SOME sort of their products from the body oil that had dried up flowers in the bottom (which they stopped selling for years now)to their parfum fragrances, to their healthy hair butter. I found a winning combination with the healthy hair butter (HHB) and eco styler for my twist outs. I SWORE by the HHB… Read more »

Ajia Eberhart
Guest

Honestly, It’s said to hear about this at first but knowing all the facts makes it much more tolerable because there’s more information revealed. I’ve been using CD since I was in the 12 years old and from then until now I don’t feel like the ingredients or any of its authenticity to its line has changed. Given at that time from 7th to 10th grade I had relaxed hair til now having natural hair the products have done exactly what they claim to do. I don’t agree that when a brand goes from small shops to major retails that… Read more »

lottie b!
Guest

I remember placing my first order with Carol’s Daughter back in 1996–1998 when Lisa was cooking up her products in her kitchen in Brooklyn. She wanted to go BIG. Back then the products were so much better. Its a shame that she SOLD OUT. I knew when I saw Hollywood folk representing the product line that the li’l company was heading for trouble. Black women want a true representation of ourselves. It’s not to say bi-racial women aren’t representative or black but they typically do not “look” like the average Black woman, at least not like me. Yes, I will… Read more »

SantanaNyla
Guest
SantanaNyla

I was a supporter years ago but haven’t used those products in years. Restructuring debt is always a smart move.

Amber
Guest
Amber

It’s been years since I used CD I tried it very early on because it was so few other natural products in the market which is primarily why they could charge at a higher price point (greater demand vs supply). The product did nothing for my thick and course hair which was just one of reasons I stopped using it. I was always surprised that the brand lasted this long because of the supply/fulfillment issues — this boutique store in my city was nearly always sold out and restocking took too long. I’m sure this was one of the reasons… Read more »

KD
Guest
KD

Those products are to darn expensive.. Walmart, Target, Dollar General and even grocery chains are booming with inexpensive products for natural hair that work wonders.. And as mentioned before we are educated enough now to whip up our own products for little to nothing.. CD, Miss Jessie and the likes with the high priced products need to do some research and come down on those prices.. if they want thier products to sell.. ijs…

Whit
Guest
Whit

Sidebar: the week before Carols Daughter was placed in Target I was in Sephora with my brother playing around with CD products. Due the high price we decided to not purchase. The following week we went back to the same Sephora to buy the products and looked high and low but couldn’t find it anywhere. When we asked an associate, she said they no longer carry it because Target does.….… I wonder how many Sephoras stopped carrying CD because of this deal with Target. It was def a red flag to me. But I have never bought any CD products… Read more »

bsbfankaren
Guest
bsbfankaren

I used to get my Carol’s Daughter Tui Oil at the same Sephora for a year, then rather abruptly, the store got rid of all the products. I had to travel to find them at various Sephora’s and then simply gave up.

Thick Nigerian Hair
Guest
Thick Nigerian Hair

Unless their first three ingredients does not include corn oil, I’m not purchasing them anymore. Every time I see Lisa on HSN she’s always talking about bouncing curls or use models with bouncy curls. I’m 4c, I don’t have bouncy curls. Bye Lisa.

Jessica Rae
Guest

That is really interesting to know that she is no longer running things. I do know that I have NOT bought any of CD products in years because I thought they were drying my hair out. I like the smell, but I just got no moisture at all. I remember seeing their store when I went to the Fox Hills Mall, and it was completely empty. I dunno, I think hair products would sell better with a third party and online versus having a storefront IMO. Maybe they can come out with some better products and I would consider investing… Read more »

Misha
Guest
Misha

I was never a big fan of CD’s products. Nevertheless, I hate to hear about the Lisa’s brand lose. Perhaps we as naturals need to understand that we are a diverse group with diversity tastes. Perhaps there are naturals who frequent salons and want high end products regardless of the ingredients?

Love JAH
Guest
Love JAH

It seems this is the direction the new company wanted to move in, so congrats is in order…won’t belong before CD is a household name, there a newly naturals, relaxed heads, and others alike that do not know the backstory, much less care to know that will find themselves fans of the new brand, myself included. I love the marguerites hair magic as well as the Monoi line and I am an online member for those discounts! I’m actually looking forward to trying the newest addition, the capuacua line (sp?) My products do not have to be all natural, I… Read more »

sash
Guest
sash

I feel duped in not knowing previously that Lisa Price doesnt have the majority of ownership within the company. 80% of my hair products are companies owned (and founded) by a person of color. I have worked really hard learning to study ingredients and researching into companies before deciding to purchase something. Ill be DAMNED if my hard earned money is just going to some already rich CEO of a company with a vast portfolio who cares and knows nothing of the black community. So I wont be purchasing Carols Daughter anymore. I have a 80% quota to keep. Watching… Read more »

Veronica
Guest
Veronica

Just the fact that Black hair care is a billion-dollar business just goes to show the massive buying power of Black women. More than enough money goes to people who are not Black touting Black hair care products.

saffron33
Guest
saffron33

I don’t use her products but wish her well

coffeeandfingernails
Guest

CD was my first line after going natural but I stopped using them years ago because I found products that work better for less (particularly Kinky Curly and Organix). This sounds like just a smart reworking of their business model. As for chances in quality, their ridiculous process kept me from experiencing that. I’ve actually stood in the store with Hair Milk in one hand and Knot Today in the other and I just can’t do it.

Adeola @ TheManeCaptain
Guest

This is sad, but i’ve learned that bankruptcy isn’t always a bad thing. Some companies file for “bankruptcy” for larger gains, which is why CD chose to go in this direction. I have never tried her products either but I wish her all the best
http://www.themanecaptain.blogspot.ca

Solange Mayers
Guest
Solange Mayers

I am very saddened to hear of this, I used her hair products at one time I wasn’t too impressed. Her bath products are great . I really thought she still owned her company and I really wanted to support her. Best of luck in her future endeavors!

DeeFlowers
Guest

I have brought some CD products in the past, mainly when they were first starting up and it was my 1 of 3 attempts to go natural. I find that they are filing Ch. 11 startling, but after seeing the HSN shows (monthly/bimonthly), the Target line launched, and the Ulta line non existent it all makes sense. Many companies will sell there souls for that almighty dollar. Giving up that percentage results in loss of focus, forgetting the customers that built you, and strong-arming creative control to appeal to whomever the new owners target market is. Case and point: I… Read more »

me10
Guest
me10

I don’t think there is anything wrong with Carol’s Daughter (CD) trying to appeal to a varitey of people. Black people buy white owned/manufactured products ALL THE TIME. What is wrong with black wanting to do the same? Does that mean it’s okay for white companies to profit off black people, but black companies can ONLY profit from black people? That’s crazy and will keep black people ALWAYS in need of having to depend on white people for jobs! The CD stores that closed I’m sure provided black people with jobs. SMH we have to do better and think BIGGER!!!… Read more »

Jaye@Curvatude
Guest

Bankruptcy a lot of times is a play out of donald trumps book, just a way to reorganize and move assets around, not the demise of a company. And I use several of the CD products, oils and body creams mainly and love them. As far as being in Target goes, that is nirvana for a brand, as you really can’t get any larger as far as distribution on shelves goes and lets not forget how much they sell on HSN. Lisa Price not owning the company anymore is not a surprise to me. This is unfortunately the route a… Read more »

Tasha
Guest
Tasha

As long as I’m supporting a black business I could care less. ! Steve Stoute is a black man and is CEO of CD supposedly .. Fine with me !

nappylove
Guest

I cut my locs seven months ago. I started using CD products. My growing afro is soft and curly and smells terrific. I was an on line client and was excited to hear she would be in Target. There are two Targets in my town. But get this. The one located near the more White part of town said they would not be carrying the CD products. The part of town closer to a higher Black population promised the product would be in the store in two weeks. The two weeks are up and I will be going there soon.… Read more »

Smile
Guest

Quite frankly, CD was always a little too expensive for my taste and when I did get around to trying them I was always disappointed by the lack of moisture they provided. Shea Moistures has been my mainstay since my bc because they’re products are great for moisturizing my type 4a/b coils, AND the ingredients are The. Bomb.

Nonye B
Guest
Nonye B

I’m rooting for CD. We need to support more blk busns so we can keep the $ in our communities!!!
But some things will have to chg on CD’s part to.

ChaNita
Guest

The first thing I don’t understand about this is why is each individual store its own entity. If they were just stores under the umbrella, they’d not have to file for BK. Re: being sold in other stores, I knew something was up when Macy’s had a complete CD clearance. I thought it was for one of two reasons: they were no longer carrying the line or the company was folding. They should have been focusing on selling the products in retail stores instead of their own from the beginning. There is more marketing involved in that. I’d look @… Read more »

Deedeemaha
Guest
Deedeemaha

I just saw it in target. With the package design I did not see it at first. I think it was already on sale.

Miss Elisa K.
Guest

Oh, the things we will do for a dollar. Lisa Price may have started out catering to a certain market but her life goal may not have been to run a daily business as the CEO. She may have wanted financial security for her life and family. And it is nothing wrong with that but for every decision there is a price and consequences. I, too, wish her well. But I think Lisa is doing just fine and has what she sought out to obtain.

Cre8ive
Guest

Well written article Christina!

dapg
Guest
dapg

As a former, loyal user of CD products, I think you hit the nail on the head in your article. I supported CD when her first shop opened in Brooklyn, NY over a decade ago when she was truly making a great product for women of color out of her kitchen. I even purchased a “lifetime membership” for discounts before it became a national brand when my “membership” became invalid. The change in quality of her products, the price hikes, and the dismissal of “the ones who brung ya,” all led to my complete boycott of all her products.

Dede
Guest
Dede

I would love for someone with an MBA to back me up or correct me here but it seems as if the new “owner” is a short term investor (5–7 years) who pumped money into the company & is looking to make the business grow so they can get back their investment. This is why we saw the targeted group go from black women to trying to encompass all women of color with varying waves and kinks. It’s not that the strategy was bad, the execution didn’t go over well because 1) there wasn’t too much of a transition; one… Read more »

Liz
Guest
Liz

I heard Lisa Price speak at a panel about 3 or 4 years ago in New York and she clearly stated that she was looking to exit the full time operations of her company. As I recall, her idea of success was being bought out by a big cosmetics or fashion company. If she is not listed as the owner, it may be because she owns a minority interest, or owns through a corporate structure and has achieved the exit she wanted. I believe the business is over 20 years. I consider it a phenomenal achievement for her to have… Read more »

Taylor Sparks
Guest

That is sad to hear, but not surprising. Carols Daughter was my initial inspiration to start my own line. After I launched I stopped buying her products, but did watch as their ingredients started including more and more chemicals. I couldn’t figure out why she would do that, but she never claimed to be an ‘organic’ company. I make all of my own hair/body products now and my initial line has transitioned into a line for athletes. Hopefully the people running the company will take the initial purpose of the company and ‘look back to the future’. Her line was… Read more »

Tamika
Guest
Tamika

Wow this is shocking! I have heard such great things about carols daughter products so I went online and bought some. I have to say I am not impressed. The hair milk dries my hair along with the other 5 products I wasted money on. I did not understand what all the hype was about until reading this and learning things have changed with the company over the years. I will not be buying these products again and I shouldn’t have strayed from my love shea moisture lol I wish this company the best of luck as I am also… Read more »

Liz
Guest
Liz

I do not think Lisa Price is broke; perhaps she chose to sell a majority interest to pursue something else. And bankruptcy is also not the same as going out of business. Sometimes it is the only way to get out of long term leases on high rent properties. Perhaps you should even reach out to Lisa and ask for some advice as you build your line.

JnB
Guest
JnB

Honestly I don’t think marketing was this issue. I think when Carol’s Daughter first came out they were one of few readily available companies making products for natural hair. Now, there are many more available and better options. I think they just weren’t able to keep up.

Carla
Guest
Carla

I purchased CD products back in the mid 1990s when it was still a small mail order company. I liked the fact that there were no mineral oils and it was a black owned company. Times have changed in the natural hair world and 20 years later, the market has changed dramatically and so did CD. I wish the company all the best.

kia
Guest
kia

i recently discovered CD…like 3 months (yeah, i know i’m late) so i dont have much invested as those who’s been with her since she first started. i can say that i do like CD & i will still continue to buy.

Aico
Guest
Aico

I just wish black people would hold on to the things they create. This is how legacies are built! I’m saddened but not at all surprised.

Tricia
Guest

I used to use Carol’s Daughter skincare products years ago. Unfortunately, her products would be out of stock for months online. I called all of her “brick and mortar” locations around the country looking for the products, and no one had any stock. About three years ago, I went to the CD store in Pentagon City Mall and the shelves were empty, yet the day before, I was at the Costco across the street and they had tons of CD products. Distribution has been an issue with this company long before Lisa Price left the helm.

CCC
Guest
CCC

It’s a shame when the founder gives up too much of their company and is left with a title and salary. I don’t know what she received, but it might have been something like that. I was turned off by the company when I sent an email and did not receive a response back. I then had to find the web master and that is when I got the response. Still, when I got my answer, I purchased a moisturizing product. I might as well have saved my money because it was no different than water from the faucet. I… Read more »

Leachka
Guest
Leachka

This article blew me away. I was always able to follow what could easily have been a jargon-filled, over-written saga. I expected to be confused but you crafted a masterful, tight but breathable story.

As a reader, I’m grateful and impressed. But as a writer, myself, I appreciate and recognize the research and thought you put into this! Outstanding.

Christina Patrice
Guest

Leachka,
That is a tremendous compliment. Thank you so much!!!

Ebony
Guest
Ebony

When I first started using Carol’s Daughter products, the hair milk was best kept in the refrigerator & needed to be shaken well before each use because it was THAT natural. I understood what each ingredient was without a special dictionary. In fact, you couldn’t even order the body scrubs online because they were perishable. The first formula change I remember came right around the time she got those new brown labels & before the celebrity endorsements … That’s when I stopped using almost all the things I really loved. Hasn’t been the same since. Coincidentally, I just bought a… Read more »

nappylove
Guest

I posted a few days ago about how I was glad to be able to buy CD products now in the local Target. Well I just got back from Target and I am very disappointed. There were very few products on display. They did not have the line I use to wash and condition my hair. CD products were mixed in Miss Jessie’s and Mixed Chicks as well as Jane Carter’s. All of these products were under the umbrella of Carol’s Daughters. It was like they were thrown together with no consideration for the buyer and their choice of product.… Read more »

Rena
Guest
Rena

By the time I discovered CD, the formula for just about every product had changed. I then looked on youtube and found videos of people who discussed how disappointed they were and how the prices were higher. One of the products people were most disappointed in was the Hair Milk. Some even commented that if the company continues to go this way, they will lose African-American support… As far as reaching a broader base, that still would have happened. The mixture of different hair types by de facto demands products that are not the traditional found in the store or… Read more »

Me
Guest
Me

This is sad to hear, but I am not surprised. I too was excited when carols daughter started spreading out and becoming more accessible, but I quickly abandoned it when I noticed the formulas started changing & becoming full of junk. I would’ve stuck around if the quality hadn’t fallen. I knew her stuff was expensive, but she was a pioneer & she opened the door to natural hair products.….However the competition of other natural hair products being less…and even people making their own products killed her.My last straw was when I went to look for some “Tui” oil which… Read more »

Ms Marcy
Guest
Ms Marcy

I emailed the cd company about four years ago when I had transitioned and cut my hair regarding my hair type, texture, thickness, etc. I got an email back which stated that I should purchase $180 dollars worth of products to get the style I wanted. Well, those products didn’t work. So I went to Macys’ and they told me to purchase $120 dollars of additional cd products. . . I look back at that time and just get mad, at myself. I learned to use those products anyway. Although I never got the 3b hairstyles I was asking for… Read more »

Likewaterforchocolat
Guest
Likewaterforchocolat

I was really saddened about this when I read it in the news. I remember when I first went natural and there weren’t too many products out there, I tried out her products. The last few times in the mall, I noticed that none of the store’s wall posters’ models were natural. Not a single one. I wasn’t thrilled with her haircare products, but I actually love her Tea Tree Face Wash and moisturizer for the winter.

Connie
Guest
Connie

Several years ago, Sephora had a huge supply of Carols Daughter products. When I went to Sephora last month to buy hair products, I noticed there were not that many CD products anymore. In fact, there were just a few products sitting on two small shelves. I knew something was wrong! My first thought was that the original formula changed and customers didn’t like the new formula, which happens with brands all the time. One thing I know for sure, if a company changes its original formula and customers don’t like the change the company will lose customers and lots… Read more »

lockstress
Guest
lockstress

I miss her spritz’s, the body milks, a lot of her scents are gone. I use to buy it at the old Spike Lee 40Acres store downtown Brooklyn.
Too many hands in the pot will ruin anything.

Monica
Guest
Monica

Back in the early 2000s i was a FAITHFUL Carol’s Daughter consumer, but since she branched out more, her ingredients became less and less natural. I stopped buying her products soon after. I miss the old days of her company. When i think about whats going on with her company, i think about this statement my Boss normally says, “All money ain’t good money”. I hope the best for her.

Indigo
Guest
Indigo

My parents used to buy her products when she was still selling them and making them at home. We continued to support her as her business grew but I’ve honestly had little interest in her products since like 2010. They smell good but I’ve generally been unimpressed. If I want something with a 2 day shelf life I’ll make it myself

Marcy
Guest
Marcy

I used to buy her products when she was still selling them and making them at home. I was turned off when I ordered my usual shipment of products (4 jars healthy hair butter, 1 hair honey mimosa, 1 jar marguerite’s magic) and the healthy hair butter had been reformulated! A waste of my money and when I tried to call or email to express my satisfaction, I got no reasonable response. One response was regarding an ‘ocean’ product that I hadn’t ordered. A few blogs mentioned that she’d reformulated to appeal to a ‘wider’ audience. That was followed by… Read more »

Jasmine
Guest
Jasmine

I hate when people separate us bi ravisl girls from being black. All natural hair varies in texture. There is no one black woman hair type or skin color. I see non bi racial women use mixed chicks. Should i tell them its not made for them.

Jasmine
Guest
Jasmine

*racial

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