Ah time would tell the tale of the rising costs of going natural. I can recall the reaction of many viewers who had seen Chris Rock’s movie “Good Hair”. It highlighted the skyrocketing costs of black hair care products which exceeds $9 Billion!
So as Women were appalled, they made decisions to go natural. Doing so would mean that they could save more money on hair care products and services and it would be a healthier choice. But just as choosing to eat healthier can be more costly, with organic produce being double the price of grocery store foods, some give up and find a way to eat healthier and still shopping at their everyday grocer.
Despite the monopoly non African Americans have had in the “Black Hair Care Industry” , African American consumers found a niche in natural hair care. Hundreds upon hundreds of websites are published for the newly natural to those who are already natural. Those who are making the choice to forgo chemical treatments don’t want to forfeit versatility and trendsetting styles, therefore n array of products that promise to straighten, hold, add shine, volume and retain moisture and length are among the best selling products, but the weave industry continues to prevail as naturals are finding that many of these products don’t work well for them and they are faced with the gripping reality that their hair isn’t looking the way they want it to look.
The purpose of many of the websites and youtube channels focusing on some aspect of natural hair care is meant to be a demonstration of how to use certain types of products in conjunction with the proper methods in combing and styling the hair. And on most of the websites today, there are numerous ads for products, accessories, books, meetups, expos, giveaways, fashion and more. Typing in “natural hair care” these days can return an overwhelming list of names, sites, and channels, and to some it can be almost too much.
“If you’re interested in going natural, and are hung-up on the price of things… don’t let a few YT videos and blog posts change a decision that could be a wonderful, and self-expressive journey! Products, are only a sub-section of what being natural is all about. If you can’t afford it…don’t buy it! There’s ALWAYS another way to achieve the same results!”
This statement, will hopefully halt those who feel the pressure to buy into the ideals that product makers portray and cause them to think more clearly about purchasing the biggest promoted natural hair product on the market at the time. About 3 years ago, products were being infused with Olive Oil, then it was Tea Tree Oil; next Shea Butter, and today ARGAN Oil! Every couple years the trend spikes and the products move accordingly, and often, products become discontinued with the fading fads that exist in black hair today.
In the Plain Dealer, Marcia Pledger writes about the grappling costs of relaxers and shampoos add up to $165 million in sales, not including small beauty supply stores and places like Wal-Mart.
Natural hair is as big a trend as it is a business venture. Some people are in it for the styles and the look, some are in it for the freedom and the power [it] natural hair exudes, and some are into natural hair for the sole purpose of selling products. Taliah Waajid, creator of Black Earth Products and Founder of the World Natural Hair Show told CNN that “Women are more educated now and conscious about what it means to be chemical free…We can be healthy and have a pretty style that is presentable.” Ms. Waajid has been natural all of her life so it isn’t a trend or new style for her; it’s a part of her everyday life.
Standing in agreement with Ms. Dovie, The Natural Hair Experience an be as expensive as we want it to be, but it isn’t a requirement. Why go natural to release the weight of relying on costly products only to rely on products the more? There is no magic potion in any of the products one would try, the biggest part of having “Good Hair” is knowing how to take care of your own hair and taking the time to learn how to do simple techniques and styles for yourself.