When you're an internationally acclaimed recording artist, you're on tour a lot. Know what that means? You're in a hotel almost every night. And Halsey did not come to play when she called out hotels across the nation for catering to white hair instead of providing shampoo that works for hair of all types and textures.
I’ve been traveling for years now and it’s been so frustrating that the hotel toiletry industry entirely alienates people of color. I can’t use this perfumed watered down white people shampoo. Neither can 50% of ur customers. Annoying.— h (@halsey) April 27, 2018
Who knew me acknowledging that white hair care products are the national standard (while POC are confined to a tiny aisle) would piss so many people off 🤷🏻♀️ not sorry.— h (@halsey) April 27, 2018
And Halsey didn't back down from the haters:
The point is that mass production of those products as the standard is part of a greater problem of disenfranchisement. If white ppl can enjoy the luxury/convenience, there should be an option for everyone to. Its an “insignificant” example of a bigger problem. That’s all! https://t.co/gWxHoboXCm— h (@halsey) April 27, 2018
In case it isn't clear by now, this is about more than just hair. Halsey is pointing out just how pervasive white privilege is, and that, especially in the case of hotel shampoos, these privileges are often imperceptible to the people who benefit from them. But for people of color they're daily instances of exclusion. And though some people dismissed Halsey's statements, the singer created a space for hundreds across the internet to discuss the implications of white privilege.
In some hotels they’re actually really nice and can work for people. For me personally there is 0 way at all. It may seem insignificant to you, but for us it’s one of the many things you see daily that illustrates you’re an odd one out— RO (@0p_ro) April 27, 2018
She’s not saying it to start riots or some shit. You need to remember this is one of the many small things that POC go through that makes them feel like we don’t matter enough to be catered to. It’s a microaggression— RO (@0p_ro) April 27, 2018
the difference is that you could use em if you wanted to, you got a choice ! not everyone can relate to that— C🍒 (@pagexplant) April 27, 2018
so only people who aren’t of color are the ones that don’t need to bring their own shampoo? ur logic is great— annA (@annaxcecilia) April 27, 2018
Absolutely but please understand that just came out . White people have been privileged for years and years on end . “The privileged” don’t look at it as a privilege because it’s a normality for them.— Kinzayyyye‼️ (@kinzayyyye) April 27, 2018
so halsey is talking to you here: start thinking about race when you make decisions. you don't think about race bc your hair benefits from the "standard" shampoo. be inclusive, and consider all customer's hair types.— Caroline Treschitta (@edgytrescheettz) April 28, 2018
While it will take far more than a tweet to undo centuries of white privilege, we hope the discussions Halsey began result in expanded minds as well as expanded hearts.