Growth Update!
Monday, February 08, 2010 | 6 comments

It's been two months since the last update! Sorry for the hiatus, lovelies. We'll be updating more frequently now. Anyway, I am one month away from my first year ful...

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26 comments

While browsing through the hair care aisles of Wal-Mart, I happened upon a hair care line called ceXpress. The product names and packaging seemed oddly familiar, but it didn't hit me until I got home... they reminded me of Carol's Daughter products! I decided to look up the products and found even more interesting things.

"It's important that consumers know where Carol's Daughter is really made, what the relevant facts are and that the whole home spun story is nothing more than marketing spin," says Donyale Bush of ceXpress (a.k.a Carol's Express).

The defense against the complaint filed by Carol's Daughter substantiates the high quality of Carol's Express and ceXpress brands. Carol's Daughter and the Carol's Express brand were made in the same warehouses at the time the suit was filed. Neither brand was made in the kitchen as of the filing date of the suit.

"This is a desperate attempt to continue to exploit consumers for anywhere from $20-$45 per product, when we provide a high quality product in ceXpress at half the price. We provide the consumer with a nature-based product at a sexy value. We know this will make our customer base, which we know to be savvy customers scrutinizing every dollar in this economy, happy."

So, what do you guys think?




26 comments

Vanessa says
May 15, 2009 at 8:20 AM

Oh wow, ok it has certainly made me think! I had a look online and also found this comment:

"Carol’s Daughter is trying to impede our right to conduct business with a lawsuit intended to punish former associates and contract employees affiliated with their brand. This lawsuit is not based on merit, but rather the fear of competition from skilled industry veterans now free of the manipulation of outside risky investors” says, Donyale Bush, COO of Carol’s Express, LLC. "While we welcome legal competition, intimidation and sour grapes of this nature is shameful.”

It's a bit hard to grasp all of the facts in a situation like this as we don't have access to all of the factual information. But, I am not surprised that something like this has come up. The marketing industry "cut throat".

Charmaine says
May 15, 2009 at 9:52 AM

Great post...I saw those products and wondered "now why do those look so familiar???" now I know why!

There are also some products out that are being marketed like Dr. Miracle except they are called Dr. Wonder. They have the same packaging type with the brown paper like color and texture.

African-americans are the ones really being expolited in the hair care market due to number of foreign companies trying to shut out Black vendors. I'm not saying the two companies mentioned are foreign owned but in general, Black people are shut out of the hair care industry although the products are supposedly designed for our hair types.

Kamika says
May 15, 2009 at 10:16 AM

Can we say infringement! Intellectual Property theft and so on. You can't copy someone's product because you used to work there, rename it, and call it your own. That's foul. Regardless of how close they are to the original creation, those are her recipes, or at least she got to the market first.

If what Ms. Bush says is true, why copy Carol's Daughters packaging and name her company so closely to her competitors? This reminds me of when I was growing up and generic brands would name their cereal Tasteeos so you would think they were the same as Cheerios. Shame! And I don't even like Carol's Daughter products.

SacredAngel says
May 15, 2009 at 11:59 AM

If you can get the same quality for half the price then shame on CD for price gouging.

However stealing is wrong as well and that's what ceXpress is doing.

Kayla says
May 15, 2009 at 12:49 PM

My mouth is open. Part of me feels for Carol's Daughter, truly, but the other part of me wants to find these less expensive products!!!

BTW, Dr. Miracle is owned by a white man whose wife is the lady on the relaxer box. They tryna get us! lmao.

Anonymous says
May 16, 2009 at 11:13 AM

I saw this brand in Wallworld a few weeks ago and laughed. They have similar fragrances (names anyhow-I don't know anything about the actual scent) and packaging (with the brown tops and whatnot, same size products too).

To me, I don't think there is much of a similarity between the two brands (outside of the aforementioned two). When you look at the ingredients it is incredibly laughable. However, not too many people pay attention to product ingredients. She's totally stretching it by calling the brand "nature based." I mean seriously, It's all dressed up Vaseline.

DanaBash says
May 16, 2009 at 2:46 PM

wow---okay so even if Carol's Daughter is over-priced (and I personally think it is though I don't have completely horrible things to say about their products), it's not cool--or legal--to just blatantly steal their design in an attempt to confuse consumers.

Anonymous says
May 17, 2009 at 11:36 PM

Wow, I am so shocked at how openly this chick has ripped off the CD label. It's bad enough that she has similiar packaging and products, she also proceeds to bad mouth the company. I have a feeling we are dealing with a disgruntled ex employee.I don't support the company as much as I did in the past, but do I wish CD all the best in their lawsuit. Oh, and as for that line about CD not being made in a home kitchen...well let's face it, she is along ways from that, we are talking about a million dollor + company; who is now gone international. Common sense says she is nolonger producing products out of her kitchen!

Anonymous says
May 18, 2009 at 9:48 AM

For anyone thinking the product looks similar you have got to be kidding or getting paid and/or associated with CD. The ceXpress brand has a HUGE X on the label, the products in my opinion are better quality products at a price MY pocket can afford. Hey..though I like Beyonce, JayZ etc, I don't have their kind of dough right now and even if I did, does it make sense in this economy to waste money? PLEASE, give me a break and do a little research. I am a natural, nappy call it what you want girl. I use the Soy Straigtening System and the Kai Hair Smoothie. It did wonders for my 'fro. Made it a little more comb-able (if that's a word) without straightening my hair. I put the flat irons on it and like magic, my hair was silk smooth. More tips for sistah's looking for products actually made by African-Americans..ceXpressproducts.com; lusterproducts.com; namasteproducts.com; bronnerbros.com; also Miss Jessie's pudding. BTW..CD is now run by an Arab-American woman..Lisa Price ran out of money and was pushed out of the organization..I'll pass on CD and keep my cash for a smarter buy.

Anonymous says
May 18, 2009 at 11:09 AM

Okay I admit it. I have used both CD and ceXpress. I honestly like them both, though I think the scent of the ceXpress products last a lot longer than CD. At half the price, ceXpress has my money everytime! I shop at Walmart a lot. I am a professional mom with kids. Isn't it time we teach our children the value of a dollar. Enuff w/the bling!

GB says
May 18, 2009 at 12:17 PM

They don't have this at my wal-mart! i need to get my hands on this. i feel bad for CD but they are too expensive. there are always knock-offs of more expensive brands when it comes to anything.

Anonymous says
May 18, 2009 at 1:33 PM

Hey...I know how you feel. I don't think all Walmart stores have it but I went to cexpressproducts.com, then clicked store locator. I live in AL in a not so diverse area (if you know what I mean). So I had to go to the Walmart in the "neighborhood" to get it. I used the Soy Straightener this weekend. It doesn't stink, It did the job and the conditioner in the box smelled 1DA4L!

Anonymous says
May 18, 2009 at 3:27 PM

Judging from the comments made by the owner, I can’t imagine that CExpress is a business that will be around for long. She sounds very immature and unprofessional. I rather spend my money at my neighborhood CD daughter shop than at Walmart anyday. Also, if anyone is under the illusion that Lisa Price is still making these products in her kitchen sink they’re crazy. I’m not a huge CD fan. I prefer their bath products more that their hair products, but I am a big fan of their hair milk. However, whenever I hear criticisms of CD and how expensive they are, I’m always annoyed that so many black people have no problem going out and spending all types of money on crap make large white-owned companies, however when it comes to black owned and/or black created companies, we throw our nose up in the air. If the CExpress products work just as well, then so be it. Everyone has a right to shop in their own best interest. But if your products are so good, you shouldn’t have to build on someone else’s name and reputation to create you own brand. I put these products in the same category as the imitation Paul Mitchell products I see in stores. They may work similarly, but some people just prefer the real thing. If you set yourself up as an imposter, don’t be shy about, just say I’m the no frills verion of CD and go on about you business. Also, the fact that they define their CHEMICAL straightner as “all natural” is a little scary. Something about the quotes made by the owner, the shadiness of their business model and their low budget website doesn’t give me much confidence in them. I wouldn't want to their stuff to touch my hair, just don’t trust ‘em.

Loolalooh says
May 18, 2009 at 3:34 PM

Hmm ... I think I'll hit up Walmart this week. LOL.

Thanks for bringing this story to light. I didn't know about ceXpress vs Carol's Daughter. I'm not sure where I stand on the issue because I should do a little more reading. But at the moment, I'm torn. On one hand, I'm saying shame on Carol's Daughter for "price gauging" as one commenter said. At the same time, we live in nation where supply and demand allows for this. If we're not happy with the price, then we don't have to buy it. On the other hand, there's the issue of trademark infringement -- and trademark infringement also gets a "shame on you". Oh and there's the issue of whether Carol's Daughter is lying about their products being homemade. I'm curious to see the outcome of this all.

Anonymous says
May 18, 2009 at 4:44 PM

Well...I think both brands are good brands. I have bought both in the past. Now I am a ceXpress brand user. To be honest, I wasn't that impressed with CD. It isn't a black company versus white company thing. Both appear to be black owned or at least started by minorities. Some of the scents are similar. Some are not. The soy kit is the bomb for someone like me growing out of my relaxer. I say let the person spending her money decide. If you're in Walmart anyway like I am, getting stuff for the house, kidz etc. pick it up. If you have an extra $30-$45 bucks to spare on a weekly or bi-weekly basis, make the trip to Sephora. In any event, let's stop all the bickerin' and hatin. It isn't necessary.

Anonymous says
May 18, 2009 at 4:57 PM

I agree with the last comment. There are 20-30 different oil sheens out there on the market, a Motions hair lotions, Pink Lotion, Optimum Oil Therapy Lotion etc. at the end of the day, the customer is always right, right? So I will see you guys at Walmart where I'll be pickin up my Hair Milk for me and my daughter :-)

Anonymous says
May 19, 2009 at 7:26 PM

Well, i looked up the cexpress products-and they were very nasty, meaning mineral oil, petroleum, etc. THEY ARE NO CAROL'S DAUGHTER!

Anonymous says
May 20, 2009 at 11:28 AM

I checked the website out also. It does not say anything about petroleum or mineral oil. So I went to Walmart to check it out. The product is a GOOD product with Shea butter etc. Check out your facts before you put out trash. Also, I did not get the impression ceXpress was trying to be Carol's Daughter, otherwise they would have charged an arm and a leg for their stuff and wouldn't be sold in Walmart.

Makeup Theory says
May 24, 2009 at 4:56 PM

Carol's Daughter is founded on celebrity buzz. Although I used to work in the fashion/beauty industry and worked heavily with celebrities, I've always hated America's obsession with what actor is using what products. Who cares??? Carol's Daughter has ingredients that are basic at best - olive oil based hair oils for $19? in 4 oz bottles? Come on people. Why? Seriously, I can personally make her products in my kitchen (and I do) for 1/10th of the price. I don't mind paying serious prices for serious products, but I'm not buying media fluff.

Tamstyles says
May 25, 2009 at 6:20 AM

I saw this sutff and was wondering what was going on..wow..Carol! I did an interview with her in 2001 and I think back then she was making it in the kitchen..but when that money starts rolling and you have HSN to supply to, ya gotta have others make the product..either way..no respect lost.

Beauté Noire says
May 26, 2009 at 5:17 PM

You know, I saw this in CVS a while back and IMMEDIATELY knew it was a CD knockoff. The fact that it was a knockoff wasn't what surprised me. What surprised me (or stunned me, really) was how blatant a copy it was.

If you want a offer a cheaper alternative to CD, by all means, go right ahead. But, good grief! Don't go so far that you darn near copy CD's exact packaging and name!They don't seem to be the least bit apologetic, and appear to be rather flippant and self-righteous. I'm NOT a fan of CD, but this is a little scandalous.

And for the record, I never thought her products were still being made in her kitchen. I mean, come on. She's whipping up enough for Sephora, HSN and her website? People please. But if she wants to make that claim and someone knows otherwise, then she deserves to be put on blast.

Anonymous says
June 18, 2009 at 9:18 PM

HA! This ceXpress woman is a JOKE! She's just using this as a pathetic way to slander CD. She's clearly jealous and immature. No one knows about this bootleg brand....if she wanted to appear like a professional business woman, she should advertise HER business, not sit up and bash CD! Here is another thing, that really got me, just this month a statement was relased by her saying that she and Carol's Daughter's affiliate are "negotiating". People shouldn't believe anything this woman says. I don't even like CD products that much, but ceXpress is CLEARLY using all of this mess as a marketing ploy to get more hits on her site. What a shame.

Anonymous says
February 26, 2010 at 9:38 PM

DO NOT SHOP AT WALMART!!

VeronicaW says
March 10, 2010 at 2:18 PM

Even though CD has celebrity investors it has been a successful business since the early 1990. CD prices have always been higher than some other products, but the main appeal of these products is that they are natural products. People who use this brand are those who are concerned about what goes in and on their bodies. That did not just begin in the last few years when Jay Z, MJB, and the Smith became associated with the company.

An says
March 28, 2010 at 9:50 PM

I slightly wonder if some of the pro-CE posters are actual CExpress employees - see the May 18th posts. Admittedly, I'm blatantly cross-posting myself and shamefacedly admit I visited the site eager to shave some of my CD bill. However, while Carol's Daughter featured pictures of the CEO and talked about how it originated in detail, CExpress's did not. Its The People, The Formulation, the Story and FAQ pages included generic 'family business' statements without specifics i.e. indicating where it started or by who and focused more on the hair straighteners than anything else. The hair care page included only 5 products dedicated to women with natural hair, yet, ironically 40% of the products included hair straighteners. Yet, even more ironic, the page featured a woman of Asian descent with naturally straight hair. Also, while CD lists each ingredient contained in their hair products, CExpress only listed 1. Plus, CE's website seemed a bit odd. It appeared to go out of its way to use certain terms to indicate its authenticity which CD didn't have to do.

If CExpress wants to differentiate itself, why use the same names as CD products i.e. 'hair milk' and 'hair smoothies.' There are 5000 hair care products out there which avoid re-using each other's product names. If your products are good, they'll work without disparaging another company.

Although the CE people claim that CD products are $45 (which is why I suspect one of the posters as a CE worker), no individual product goes over $20. Plus, the products last so long that I'm still working on my jar of mimosa hair honey from last year. It isn't as if you go every week to refill.

Like an earlier poster wrote, I have no doubt that CD started via kitchen experimentation; however, she clearly could not continue that. So, CExpress probably comes from the same warehouse as many beauty manufacturers use the same production warehouse. However, that does not mean that they use the same ingredients.

This type of deliberate deceit is bad for the African-American community particularly the hair care arm which is now starting to see African-American owned businesses flourish.

mls092089 says
March 7, 2012 at 11:25 PM

I LOOOOOOOVE CEXPRESS! I JUST USED THE CHEMICAL STRAIGHTENER AND NEVER(!) HAVE I EVER HAD A RELAXER ALONE LEAVE MY HAIR FEELING SO HEALTHY! I HAD TO LOOK AT THE BOX (I TRIED IT OUT OF BRAVERY AND DESPERATION BC I'd NEVER HEARD OF THEM BEFORE ) TO SEE HOW LITTLE I PAID, 6 BUCKS! THEN I STARTED LOOKING FOR THE REST OF THE LINE AND COULDN'T FIND IT ANYWHERE. I EVEN JUST SPENT 25 BUCKS ON SOME CAROL'S DAUGHTER TRIAL SIZES (I GOT IMMEDIATE RESULTS FROM CEXPRESS, NOT THE CASE WITH CAROL'S DAUGHTER ). NOW, IM ONLINE HERE TRYING TO FIGURE OUT WHY I CAN'T FIND THEM ANYWHERE - THIS LAWSUIT MUST BE WHY! FIGURES. FIND SOMETHING I LOVE ON MY HAIR (THAT NEVER HAPPENS) AND ITS ARRAY! WHAT AM I GOING TO DO?!

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