Aveda and Brazil's "coconut breakers" bring you great hair care

The quebradeiras de coco, or "coconut breakers," work to supply Aveda with babassu nut oil. Photo: www.tve.orgThe quebradeiras de coco, or 'coconut breakers,' work to supply Aveda with babassu nut oil.

What do color conserve, smooth infusion and shampure shampoos have in common? Besides being part of some of Aveda's three most popular hair care systems, they all contain babassu betaine cleansing systems. This cleansing system works to provide a rich lather that gently cleanses and softens the hair. The most interesting thing about these shampoos, however, is not the amazing effects they have on your hair, but instead, is the way in which the babassu nut oil is obtained.

Aveda's beauty mission is "to care for the world we live in, from the products we make to the ways in which we give back to society..." With this in mind, Aveda uses ingredient sourcing in order to obtain materials from different communities around the world. Ingredient sourcing allows Aveda to know exactly where their ingredients come from while also providing the Indigenous people with the means to support their own economic independence. The story of the Brazilian quebradeiras de coco, or "coconut breakers," is one of hope and inspiration.

Babassu nut oil is obtained in the southern and eastern regions of Amazonian Brazil by a group of women who spend their days gathering, cracking and processing babassu nuts from babassu palms. Their land was burned twenty years ago to make room for cattle ranching and the Indigenous people were forced off of their homeland, family farms being ruined. These women pulled together to resist the destruction and eventually became the sole providers for most of their families. After lobbying governmental officials, the demolition of these palm trees was made illegal and their traditional ritual is now lawfully protected.

The destruction of babassu palm trees is now prohibited by law. Photo: www.tve.orgThe destruction of babassu palm trees are now prohibited by law.

Since Aveda has teamed up with the quebradeiras de coco six years ago, more advancements in this Brazilian community have been made. A babassu processing facility, a soap-making facility and a paper press for processing babassu fibers have all been financed by Aveda and the Indigenous people have since capitalized on their trade. Aveda has even inspired and motivated the people of this region to focus on making their own community environmentally conscientious. They have since begun making plant-based medicines and will continue down the road of responsible environmental care that Aveda helped pave.

So, next time you head to your favorite Aveda salon to purchase any color conserve, smooth infusion or shampure shampoos (or any other babassu-containing product), remember the quebradeiras de coco. With your help, Aveda and this unique group can continue to work together in their symbiotic relationship.

For more information about how Aveda and the quebradeiras de coco work together, please visit Aveda's official website.

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