When Donna Neddo was a little girl her mother had to drive over 20 miles to find products for her hair. Growing up African American in a predominately white neighborhood wasn’t the best situation for Neddo’s naturally textured hair. Product scarcity wasn’t always the case in the United States.
In fact, there was a time in the 80s and 90s where Black entrepreneurs dominated the hair care industry, but after being bought out by major corporations, those brands became far and in between.
Now fast-forwarding several years, Black entrepreneurs are back at it and are major competitors on the shelves of national retailers.
Over the next decade, the shelves of national retailers like Target, Wal-Greens and Wal-Mart begin to add a little flava. Now-A-Days, the shelves are looking a little more colorful.
According to the Natural Hair is Big Business For Black Entrepreneurs article in Black Enterprise Magazine, the Mintel Research Firm said the black haircare market is now worth $684 Million. And now curlies can find over 20 to 30 brands for natural hair in their local retail stores.
This was a major come up for people like Neddo who even in college at The University of Michigan can recall most stores having a “narrow” column of ethnic products. Now as an adult and a natural hair vlogger with over 60,000 subscribers on YouTube, Neddo is seeing the light at the end of the tunnel, well at least the hair care aisle.
“I’m happy with the variety of products to choose from that suit my natural hair texture,” Neddo said.
In fact, Black Entrepreneurs like Rochelle Graham, who under 30-years-old have navigated their brands to stores like Target and now Wal-Greens. She now travels around the world educating supporters about the brand she started while in college.
“Being featured on the shelves of the largest retailer of professional beauty supplies is a part of an ongoing expansion plan set forth by Alikay Naturals that encompasses a heavyweight marketing, sales and communications platform targeting major territories,” Graham said.
Amani Williams couldn’t be happier! She said when she sees new natural hair products and brands she’s instantly drawn in. She said she often spots new collections at Target and Wal-Greens.
“I’m attracted to bright colors and new collections,” Williams said. “When I see new natural hair products and brands, I’m instantly attracted to what they are selling.”