We all know how important representation is, especially as cultural nuances make every group of people’s needs different. Happy Hues, a Black-owned baby and toddler care company established by Eunique Jones Gibson, mastermind behind site Because of Them We Can, is a new brand prioritizing it.
“I’ve been pretty vocal about identifying ways to infuse representation where it is absent or lacking, especially when it comes to connecting culture and community,” says Gibson. “I never thought I’d start a baby and toddler care brand, but when you’re open to the possibilities, sometimes things fall into place.”
The brand is set to launch a plant-derived training pants collection called Big-Ups with inclusive and sustainable designs, interactive animations, and a social impact model. The characters on the product will also represent a range of hues.
The idea for the brand initially came when the founder realized her 3-year-old daughter didn’t have any nighttime pants with cartoon characters that looked like her. She also felt seeing characters like Cinderella on her daughter’s Pull-Ups didn’t support the affirmations she was using to build her daughter’s self-confidence.
“The more I researched, the more I realized that most designs and characters within this space were white characters or legacy fictional characters, but nothing that looked like my daughter or her peers,” she says.
Building self-confidence, especially among kids of color, should happen early on in life. Gibson feels training years are a key period in which parents can make an impact on kids’ self-esteem.
“The potty training age is such a great time for learning and exploration,” says Gibson. “After doing affirmations with my own toddler while getting dressed, I realized the opportunity to leverage diapers and training pants as a canvas to train babies beyond the potty.”
“We know that as early as six months a baby’s brain can recognize race-based differences and by ages 2-4 they can internalize racial bias,” she adds. “One out of every two babies born in the United States is a baby of color. Representation is the answer. A world where children feel seen, valued and connected to one another will create an environment that’s better for all,” she says.
Big-Ups are free from parabens, fragrances, and lotions, which can be helpful for parents looking for safe and eco-friendly products. The line also include wetness indicators, double leak guards for added protection, and an elastic waistband so kids can easily pull the pants up and down.
“Happy Hues is meant to help facilitate a sense of joy and community at an age when so many lifelong foundational elements are being laid, she says. “I saw what didn’t exist for all these children and I just couldn’t ignore it.”
The proceeds from the products will also go towards a good cause. Five percent of net proceeds will go to Happy Hues’ non-profit partner, Ferst Readers, an organization that promotes literacy in young kids.
Big-Ups are available on the Happy Hues website via a one-time purchase for $19.99 or through a monthly subscription plan for $59.99.