Nubian’s Way: Providing hair care for all styles

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Photo by Photo courtesy of Nubian's Way

The mother-daughter duo won $7,500 from the Marquette 707 Hub.

When Marquette Law student Carolyn Eboni Carson was an undergraduate student at Marquette, she wasn’t able to find products that worked for her hair.

Her mom, Latrina Thornton, also noticed this issue and took matters into her own hands.

Through collaboration between Carson and Thornton, their company Nubian’s Way was born. 

Thornton created the Growth Serum and the Butter Blend. The Growth Serum is applied to the scalp and can be used with any hair type, and the Butter Blend is used to soften hair so it’s easier to style.

“It’s very difficult to find products that are actually good for our hair that are organic and all natural,” Thornton said. 

Thornton looked for ingredients at her local grocery stores with names that were natural and easy to pronounce rather than toxic and unnatural ingredients.

“The product can be used by many different people, for all different purposes. This is what happens when you use the highest quality ingredients and create a product with a lot of value that addresses a real gap in the market,” Kelsey Otero, Sr. Director of Community Engagement at Marquette.

Carson said she realized her mom had these great products in her house, and it was a great opportunity to experience her interest in business.

Carson and her mom wanted to attach a meaningful message to their product. On every package, there’s a tag that says “You’re beautiful just the way you are” to represent self love and self care.

Through Marquette’s 707 Hub, Carson and Thornton competed in the Brewed Ideas Challenge April 2022 and took home $7,500 to advance their business. 

Carson is grateful that through Marquette, she was able to not only continue her studies as a law student, but she was also able to explore her interests in business and entrepreneurship.

“I started doing some research and looked at some cases and I realized that the United States has a long history of hair discrimination. There is a plethora of cases where people have been denied employment just on the basis of their hairstyle,” Carson said. 

Carson was inspired by The Crown Act which is a current movement supported by the company Dove and Senator Holly J. Mitchell that aims to reduce hair discrimination among African American women in the United States.

Research done by the Dove CROWN Coalition found that trauma from hair discrimination causes Black girls to miss one week of school each year due to hair-related concerns.

The CROWN act advocates against discrimination among cultural hairstyles of Black girls and women and make it illegal worldwide.

Carson said that no matter what hairstyle you chose to wear whether it’s braids, an afro or twists, their product can help your hair reach its full potential.

“Nubian’s Way is about celebrating black beauty. It is a reminder that diversity is beautiful and should always be embraced,” Otero said.

In the face of discrimination, Carson and Thornton wanted to have an impact on the community through their products.

“It’s important to understand things like hair discrimination and how it affects people who have the same college degree but may have different futures simply because of the way they look,” Carson said.

Carson thinks there’s more work to be done not only nationwide but on Marquette’s campus.

“I know that Marquette has increased the number of students of color, but their experience is still a lot different. Marquette should be asking themselves ‘How can we make these students of color have a good experience here at our school?’” Carson said.

Carson said Marquette should be looking to support people who need different types of hair products.

“It’s okay to be different. We’re all different. We’re all part of the melting pot,” Thornton said.

Carson believes that there should be a widespread understanding at Marquette that we’re all different, and that’s okay.

“We’re all family.” Thornton said. “We’re all one. We’re all together.” 

This story was written by Sophia Tiedge. She can be reached at [email protected]