Relaxer Sales Decline Once Again But Wigs And Weave Sales Remain Strong

relaxers sales down while weaves and wigs sales upA 26% decline overall? Ouch! We know a few relaxer company CEO’s are probably not sleeping too well at night due to the these daunting sales numbers that have been nosediving for a few years now.

New reports have come out about the straight up beating relaxer companies are getting in terms of their sales numbers which compared to years ago have been on the decline. Stats please?

Two years ago, MN reported that relaxer kit sales dropped 17 percent between 2006 and 2011. New information from Mintel, a consumer trends firm, finds that relaxer sales have, again, taken a nosedive. In 2008, relaxer kit corporations reeled in a $206 million profit. In 2011, their revenue dwindled down to $179 million — a 15 percent decrease. This year, Mintel expects profits to plunge down to $152 million.

I thought for a company to succeed they needed to have a steady increase in sales? Hm maybe I was wrong! Ok, enough of the sarcasm we would not dare perpetuate the madness of creating even more competition between choosing to rock your natural hair versus choosing to relax it.

We still believe that what you do with your own hair is a personal choice and healthy hair comes in all forms natural and relaxed.

But it is important to speak about the decline in sales and what it means directly and indirectly for the natural hair community as well as women who choose to relax and of course the hair industry overall.

For our naturalistas out there, this may or may not be good news; as a matter of fact most of us just find the information interesting but we are mostly indifferent because it does not really affect our hair journeys.

There is no reason to use this information to stick it to the relaxer companies or women who continue to relax their hair. You know that in your face, talk to the hand kind of stuff is rather juvenile so we would rather look at it as an opportunity for gains in our own community.

Touching on the business side of things for a bit, there is space now for companies, salons, and merchandise shops to take full advantage of the buying power of individuals who have chosen to spend their money elsewhere. Stats please?

On the flip side, shampoos and conditioners formulated for Black natural hair has skyrocketed. This year profits are expected to peak at $257 million which is up from 2008′s $211 million. This is a 22 percent increase in just three years.

Styling products for the upkeep of natural hairstyles are also, of course, reaping the benefits of the natural hair trend. “The styling products segment has also increased from $220 million in 2008 to an estimated $268 million in 2013,” Mintel notes. Relaxers are the only Black hair care products that have dropped.

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About Petra

Hi I'm Petra Lomax , a staff writer and editor for . I am Jamaican born and raised and moved to the United States in my early 20's. I have a BA in Political Science and International relations as well as an MBA and a Masters In Project Management. I love travel, culture and anything that has to do with creative media and business.

About Petra

Hi I'm Petra Lomax , a staff writer and editor for . I am Jamaican born and raised and moved to the United States in my early 20's. I have a BA in Political Science and International relations as well as an MBA and a Masters In Project Management. I love travel, culture and anything that has to do with creative media and business.


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  1. Erika C Tyson

    I think it’s because even though more women are going natural some of us myself included still like to wear weave and/or wigs sometimes and lots of black celebs as well.

  2. Jai Ruggs

    I’m natural but I love braids. And a lot of women that transition wear wigs, weaves, and braids.

  3. Ebony Janell Thompson

    Can’t grow it, sew it! Lol its for protective hair styles, hell as long as they don’t use the creamy crack your natural to me, just did my sisters weave because she’s transitioning to natural but her hair is short and she loves long so she said she’s gone keep protecting it until she gets alil more length to her natural…

  4. Msredd Makinithappen

    Yep! Instead of putting all those harsh chemical on uur hair braid yours put sum weave in or wig then when u want ur natural style back take it off/out! SIMPLICITY!

  5. Ruth Guzman

    Ppl are using wigs n weaves as protective styles and an alternative to wearing a straight look without flat ironing. I flat iron my hair less often and just throw a wig on for different styles I want to wear. My hair gets to rest and I can unleash my beautiful, bouncy curls whenever I want. I don’t wear weaves but I will grab a cute short wig in a second instead of cutting my hair short.

  6. Jenny JackJack

    Relaxer sells may be down, but they will always sell it! I love my silky, long,healthy, relaxed hair and have no plans on ever going natural.

  7. Malissa Kelsey

    We’re becoming more educated. We hear all day long about eating right and taking care of out skin & body, but the hair is overlooked. We don’t hear about the importance of healthy hair until it starts falling out and not growing back.

  8. Vevai Marvelous Myers

    there’s so many bad weaves/wigs out there that I want to vomit. no, I don’t wear a natural but I am wearing my real hair . our features just don’t go with some of these weaves/wigs we are wearing. I am tired seeing us with those weaves to the butt that is tangled.

  9. Amera Dntcare Hatcher

    Less ppl relaxing their hair as the naturals build stronger but protective styling isn’t going anywhere for naturals and relaxed girls… iMo

  10. Michelle Thompson

    I think when people want a straight look, they don’t want to alter their natural hair texture or deal with the harsh chemicals that relaxers provide so they get weaves. Relaxers overtime cause too many problems

  11. Cheneye Cousins

    Lol from what I have observed majority of the youth and adults destroy their hair then to cover it up put a weave in. It is not about protective styling, which would be the obvious answer in a forum such as this. Treating natural hair properly is something that is learned and many women just don’t care to learn and why when they can go down the street, buy 18 inches of the finest and not worry about it.

  12. Nikki Daniel

    I’m wearing wigs right now on my journey to bsl then i may relax if I can’t find someone to do a correct blowout for me

  13. Michelle Thompson

    Especially once people realized they could achieve that silky smooth texture without relaxing their hair with the Dominican salon, black salon, or a really good flat iron

  14. Keya Brock

    I like to change it up plus weaves that I done right are great protective styles

  15. Cherissa Cassamajor

    Because the sistah are coming to there sences with what happen with the creamy crack…… But yet still some are still scared to so there natural or the are Transitioning …… But at least its a good sign…Stay strong my sistah

  16. Chrisetta Woods Guthrie

    I wear wigs to protect my natural hair. I still take care of it, but I try to handle it as less as possible right now until I am ready to flaunt it and get my mind right to deal with it every day. Natural hair is work and it has to be cared for and prepped every night or else my day won’t go as planned.

  17. Blenda Life's Good Patterson

    Great news for those of us who still use relaxers. My hair is thick and as long as I want it to be, and I still have my edges. I know how to use it without over-processing, irritating my scalp before and during application, using it too often, or leaving it on too long. Plenty of people only went natural because of their misuse of relaxers, too tight braids, rough methods of removing braids and glued in weaves, trendy thing right now, and so much more. Stop blaming products and your terrible removal techniques for your lack of knowledge about how to properly use or do things as it pertains to your hair. The hair you see, no matter what state it’s in is DEAD, so as long as you know how to properly take care of it, everything else is irrelevant. Do what you want to your hair, as long as it is your choice and not because hair Nazis told you that you are denying your “blackness” if you relax your hair…

    1. Megan Foreskin

      It wasn’t a Nazi that told me anything,it’s common sense, i think. black people were not born with straight hair…

    2. Lisa Natalie Johnson

      I think we should be able to wear our hair as blackwomen , processed, colored or not. To each his own. Lot’s of white, Indian and Asian people get their hair permed and/or straightened. Relaxers contribute to fibroids and I only found that out after major surgery, but seriously, soon there is going to be a strict list letting us know if we are black enough if we don’t wear our hair a certain way. I have never seen people cut each other down so much, geez!

  18. Tonette Laleta Shakur

    I wear wigs and weaves. But I don’t relax my hair. With all the different weave methods women don’t have to relax their hair any more. I keep my hair braided up. I love that I can wear my hair in different styles and colors and not add chemicals to my own hair.

  19. Davetta Wilson

    I love my wigs always have I can have whatever look I want when I want don’t do weaves that much I have to do sew in & I can buy 2 fabulous lace front wigs for what one decent sew in cost

  20. Shemeka Griffin Adams

    I think that’s an excellent start. The chemical process of relaxing the hair is damaging to our health. So good. We can’t forget that it is a huge step simply to do that. Most black women have never seen their true texture so making the decision to stop relaxing is a big leap of faith. I believe like with all things we have to meet people where they are & not batter them for not being where we think they should be.

  21. April LovingMyself Wimple

    Relaxers sales may be going down but I am still going to use them. I used to wear wigs and weaved but I love my own hair better. Natural is not for me. However I dont use relaxers a lot. My relaxed hair is healthy and strong

  22. Lozette Clemons

    Natural styles are a whole lot of work so putting in a sew in or a wig on just gives a break especially for people that work. I know that’s why my sister do it that’s in the marines. And her natural hair is down her back unlike its good for protective reasons.

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