This here blog is worth reading to the end. Trust me! Black Girls Rock, My Black is Beautiful, these acclamations and affirmations of self-love are currently making headlines. Beauty is boss in the Black community, and the proof is in the numbers. According to Nielsen, African-Americans are estimated to hold a buying power of $1.3 trillion by this year. The facts are, Black women, spend an estimated $7.5 billion annually  on beauty products, 80% more on cosmetics and twice as much on skincare than the general market.

 

With all that buying power, it makes sense that the Black consumer would have a significant stake in the Black beauty market. However, that couldn’t be further from the truth. Who has the real power in the Black beauty market? Korean entrepreneurs. For over 50 years, the Korean-American community has dominated the Black beauty supply market. Between manufacturing, distributing and selling these hair care products, Korean entrepreneurs appear to control all the key components. By opening large stores and buying out smaller Black-owned ones, using Black models on their products and employing a Black staff, Korean entrepreneurs have created what some call a monopoly on the Black beauty market.

 

In his 2006 documentary Black Hair  filmmaker, Aron Ranen explains the history and current state of the industry. Citing that “In 1965, the Korean Wig merchants joined together and convinced the Korean government to outlaw the export of raw hair. This ban made it so that one can only buy the pre-made wigs and extensions.” Meaning Korean extensions could only be manufactured in Korea. “Six months later, the United States government created a ban on any wig that contains hair from China,” which gave Korea an opportunity to monopolize the hair extension market.

There are nearly 10,000 beauty supply businesses in the United States, less than 400 are Black-owned according to Naturallymoi.com . So, while African Americans purchase nine times more beauty and grooming products than any other ethnic group, we own less than 1% of the market share. Devin Robinson, an economics professor and author of “How to Become a Successful Beauty Supply Store Owner ” identified a root issue. “The problem is with the distributors. Distributors are mainly Non-Blacks, and they handpick who they will distribute products to. This frequently leaves aspiring Black owners disenfranchised.”

In the article Pioneering Entrepreneur Talks Increasing Number of Black-Owned Beauty Supply, Founder of Fabulous Freddy’s Beauty Supply Boutique Janice Frederick pinpoints some of the challenges of running a beauty supply business. “When you call the distributors which are 99% owned by Koreans and don’t speak the language, they either hang up on you or say you need a ridiculous amount to get started. Some encounters I had were quite sexist. I felt I wasn’t taken seriously because I was a woman. I would have an older male make phone calls for me just so I could get in-person appointments.” says Frederick. She goes on to say, “I think it’s the distribution channels that give the individuals that don’t speak the same language less than others. We don’t get the same pricing and, therefore, tend to charge higher than other stores. This deters people from supporting because they find us to be “high priced.” African Americans want to support, but we are also very price conscious. I have received a tremendous amount of support from the community. I raised $12k through a crowd-funding website with the help of the community to open my second location in Brooklyn. I know that support from the community is not the problem. We need a fair shot at opening businesses, and we just don’t have it”.

 

Another major issue with Korean owned beauty supply stores is that the owners don’t live in the Black community. So all of the money the community invests in that business is not reinvested into the community. The Korean owner is not buying groceries in the neighborhood. They’re not depositing funds in neighborhood bank, they do those things in their neighborhoods, to encourage economic growth in their community. Thanks to organizations like the Black Owned Beauty Supply Association (BOBSA) strides are being taken to actively circumvent this from continuing to happen in the Black community.

Created in 2004, BOBSA president Sam Emmon aims to address the issues independent Black beauty supply owners face. BOBSA currently has over 5000 members who, like self-made millionaire and beauty mogul Madame CJ Walker, are poised to take back Black purchasing power. So, are Black-owned Beauty Supply Stores a Myth? By no means. Are they proportionate to the community's trillion dollars purchasing power? Sadly, the answer to that is a resounding NO. PuffCuff aims to be part of the solution. We actively seek black owned, female owned, health conscious beauty supply stores and salons to retail the PuffCuff line of products. If you find a PuffCuff Hair Clamp in a Korean owned beauty supply store, it is a KNOCK-OFF. We ask you to gather as much contact information as possible. Take a picture of the product with your cell phone and pass all the information to us. They will quickly be served with a cease and desist letter.

If you want to be a part of the solution, support the Black beauty supply businesses. Below is a list of our favorite US-based minority-owned beauty supplies. A full list can be viewed at 50 Black-Owned Beauty Supply Stores You Should Know.

CURL KITCHEN**
3428 S King Dr
Chicago, Illinois 60616
EMAIL: curlkitchen@gmail.com
TEL: (224) 334-5397
WEB: curlsunderstood.com

LUXE BEAUTY SUPPLY**
2477 Crain Hwy
Waldorf, MD 20601
EMAIL: info@luxebeautysupply.com
TEL: (301) 526 7705
WEB: lhboutique.com

GET SASSY BEAUTY SUPPLY
368 N Arizona Ave #102
Chandler, AZ 85225
EMAIL: Jazmine@JazmineNash.com
TEL: (480) 917-0014
WEB: getsassybeautysupply.com

HAIR FOOD JUNKIE BEAUTY SUPPLY
9251 Alondra Blvd C
Bellflower, CA 90706
EMAIL: info@hairfoodjunkie.com
TEL: (562) 281-9308

TRU’MANE “THE NATURAL SPOT”
90302, 332 S Market St
Inglewood, CA 90301
EMAIL: trumanehaircare@gmail.com
TEL: (213) 235-6533

KD HAIRCARE SUPPLY
24453 Sunnymead Boulevard
Moreno Valley, CA 92553
EMAIL: kd.haircarellc@gmail.com
TEL: (951) 242-0200
WEB: kdhaircaresupply.com

GARDEN OF NATURAL BEAUTY
2900 W Sample Rd #1305
Pompano Beach, FL 33073
EMAIL: Info@GardenOfNaturalBeauty.com
TEL: (954) 366-2720
WEB: gardenofnaturalbeauty.com

THE GOOD HAIR SHOP
1548 Ralph David Abernathy Blvd
Atlanta, GA 30310
EMAIL: thegoodhairshop@gmail.com
TEL: (404) 390-3590
WEB: thegoodhairshop.com

SHELLY'S BEAUTY SUPPLY STORE
5015 Floyd Road - Suite 300
Mableton, GA 30126
TEL: (404) 400-2661
WEB: ShellysBeautySupply.com

HAIRIZON BEAUTY
Northgate Mall, 1058 W Club Blvd
Durham, NC 27701
EMAIL: customerservice@hairizonbeauty.com
TEL: (800) 557-9828
WEB: hairizonbeauty.com

FABULOUS FREDDY’S BEAUTY SUPPLY BOUTIQUE
94-09 Astoria Blvd
East Elmhurst, NY 11369
TEL: (718) 505-2989

VIVRANT BEAUTY
220 St Nicholas Ave
New York, NY 10027
EMAIL: hello@vivrantbeauty.com
TEL: (212) 865-0100
WEB: vivrantbeauty.com

HEAD GAMES BEAUTY SUPPLY
67 North Pleasant Street, 2nd Floor Rear of Building
Amherst, MA 01002
EMAIL: headgamesbeauty@gmail.com
TEL: (413) 253-7478
WEB: headgamesbeauty.com

GO NATURAL 24/7
4721 SE 29th St
Del City, OK 73160
EMAIL: support@gonatural247.com
TEL: (405) 601-4673
WEB: gonatural247.com

TENDRILS AND CURLS
2501 1/2 S. Shepherd Drive, #1
(Shepherd and Westheimer in the Artigiani Center)
Houston, TX 77019
EMAIL: info@tendrilsandcurls.com
TEL: (713) 520 -7179
WEB: tendrilsandcurls.com

FLOR BELLA BEAUTY BAR
427 E Aviation Blvd
Universal City, TX 78148
florbellabeautybar@gmail.com
(210) 776-7729
WEB: florbellabeautybar.com

PAMPERED & TWISTED NATURAL HAIR BOUTIQUE
15015 Westheimer Rd
Houston, TX 77082
EMAIL: info@pamperedandtwisted.com
TEL: (281) 862-8759
WEB: pamperedandtwisted.com

 

**Authorized PuffCuff Retailer

Sources: Nielsen ( African-American Consumers Are More Relevant Than Ever ), WWD (E ssence Panel Explores Beauty Purchasing ), Black Hair (Film), Naturally Moi (A re Koreans Intentionally Keeping Blacks Out of the Hair Weave Industry? ), Black Enterprise (Pioneering Entrepreneur Talks Increasing Number of Black-Owned Beauty Supply Stores ), “ How to Become a Successful Beauty Supply Store Owner ”, Black Owned Beauty Supply Association (BOBSA), Official Black Wall Street (50 Black-Owned Beauty Supply Stores You Should Know )

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