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Beauty Genie vending machine Black hair care Union Station

Beauty Genie Box vending machine at Chicago's Union Station offers over 500 products for textured hair, promoting self-love and accessibility.

The Beauty Genie Box vending machine is a game-changer for people with textured hair, offering over 500 products specifically designed for their needs. From mainstream oils and shampoos to unique items that are hard to find in stores, this vending machine has it all. And now, it's available at Chicago's Union Station.

Ebony Karim, CEO of Beauty Genie, emphasized the importance of accessibility for Black and brown communities who often struggle to find the right beauty supplies. The vending machine at Union Station offers a wide range of products, including bonnets, shower caps, and edge control, catering to people on the go.

Karim also highlighted the societal conditioning that has led many to feel ashamed of their natural hair. Historian Ernest Crimm III echoed this sentiment, noting that hair has not only been a symbol of social status and spiritual connection but also a form of resistance. Throughout history, hairstyles have been used as a means of resistance, from braids serving as escape routes for slaves to relaxers being used to conform to society's standards.

Quintella Rodgers, owner of Thee Hair Bar Salon, has partnered with Beauty Genie to provide tutorials on natural hair for young Black students. She emphasized the importance of access to products that are not readily available in stores, and expressed hope that the vending machine at Union Station will pave the way for similar machines at historically Black colleges and universities.

Rodgers also stressed the importance of stocking products that are sulfate-free, paraben-free, and suitable for relaxed, color-treated, and natural hair. Karim added that feeling good about oneself internally reflects externally, emphasizing the importance of embracing natural hair and using products that promote confidence and self-care.

Overall, the Beauty Genie vending machine is a step towards inclusivity and accessibility for individuals with textured hair, providing a wide range of products that cater to their specific needs. Its presence at Union Station is just the beginning, with the potential for expansion to other locations, including historically Black colleges and universities. This innovative approach to beauty supply distribution is not only about products, but also about empowerment and embracing natural beauty.

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