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. Ciara Mackey

    I haven’t worn perms in years because they used to give me tremendous, deep-rooted headaches

  2. Dominique Latrice

    Weave and wigs are good forms of protective styling for transitioners. I wore them before transitioning cause of the versatility and sill do now. Um almost bsl and if I want to rock a Bob, I get a sew in. Relaxer see declining is good bc women are being more careful about the harsh chemical and wants healthier hair. In which wigs and weaves cab help provide if done correctly.

  3. Blenda Life's Good Patterson

    KMSLOL! You think? Wowwww. Not trying to tear you or anyone else down (which is usually the misconception) Megan Foreskin, but your response was very irrelevant nor does it support why you are relaxed, texlaxed, transitioning, or natural (was what I was talking about in my response).

  4. Felicia McLean

    I wear my natural hair most of the time, but sometimes it’s nice to switch up your look and that’s when I do braids, weave or a wig. &when I first went natural I didn’t like the length of my hair so i wore wigs until my hair grew out a bit 🙂

  5. Shanita Bryson-Alexander

    Right^…and once people realize it’s not what’s on the head but it’s what’s in it…then we can stop tearing people down about their hair choices!

  6. Shaketta Shannel Singleton

    If you have weave in your hair that is not considered Natural! You didnt grow that hair and your natural hair is still covered up and you dont show it just as you changed its form with relaxers.
    People kill me calling themselves natural and they have in extensions.

  7. Lola H. Ray

    I dont know how accepting and loving the hair that GOD gave you which grows out of your own scalp is following a trend? We learned to put the relaxer in and perfect that but find it strange to learn to take care of our own hair? I love all kinds of weaves, wigs, color and curl but I can’t say it’s “trendy” to be myself! We haven’t seen our true selves in so long some of us think it’s a trend….. sad.

  8. Blenda Life's Good Patterson

    And that “why can’t you accept your hair the way GOD made it” response is played out and irrelevant. The main ones hollering that are usually the same ones caking on make-up, putting in color contacts, getting butt, lip, breast, and other surgical work done to change and everything else. Didn’t God make your face, butt, breasts, lips, eye color, etc as well?

  9. Shanita Bryson-Alexander

    LMBO once again…everyone has their definition of what defines them and their beauty. To add God to the equation, don’t just pick and choose what you want to go by according to Him. Go by all his standards if that’s the case! Including makeup, weaves, the way you dress, and how you eat! #Take it how u want jmo

  10. Mikailia Rogers

    My hair is natural but I still wear weaves as protective styling and versatility weaves will be worn ad long as they are being made lol!

  11. Ashley Shorter

    Anbody else think Blenda Life’s Good Patterson and Shanita Bryson-Alexander need a life? Ijs….lol

  12. Markita Parris

    I have been getting my hair straightening done wit relaxers for years now.since I was a hair is good.but like most females we get tired of messing wit our hair .the coloring the cutting the heat the styling etc damages ur hair.we wanna switch it up color style and length wise I cant go wrong wit my trusty pal :the wig ♥

  13. Tammy McGhee

    Wigs and weaves a good way to protect natural styles. Don’t do myself, but whatever floats your boat

  14. Blenda Life's Good Patterson

    I have a life Ashley Shorter. Seems as if you are very worried about mine. Maybe if you found a life of your own, you could free up time to manage one. Good day to you!

  15. Michelle Moore Green

    Ladies, its ok for us to look pretty on the outside but why do we have to show how ugly we are in the inside with nasty attitude about our hair, weave, perm, relaxer, or anything to make us woman beautiful on the outside

  16. Tiffany Murphy

    Well for some ppl the hair is worn for protective styles, but I think most ppl just detach themself from their hair because of the deep rooted brainwashing on ethnic hair…you can do that with the weaves and wigs with no problem, but with relaxers your truth slowly comes back to light.

  17. Gina Ivette

    Well , I do not have problem with my Naturals by Nutrine -my Tec Italy strenghtened products -take care of my hair and my hair is long. ( wigs do not work for me )

  18. Jeaneen Alise

    I don’t care what people do to their hair… It’s a personal choice…. But I wonder if this means that there are those who’ve gone natural who can’t handle it… But they don’t necessarily want the creamy crack…

  19. Brandy Craig-Robinson

    Omg people calm down b4 this natural thing took over it was us black women being seperated by the color if our skin with this team lightskin and team darkskin…so what if a women wants 2 wear a wig 4 protection or dosent feel like wearing her natural hair 4 a while…its alot of work…i kno i do it…and extentions just add a little length if wanted or needed…we are all beautiful no matter what the shade of our skin or what we put on our head…the sooner we realize that the sooner we can all be happier

  20. Kimberly Mabry-Pannell

    Well I like relaxing my its easier to comb and handel but my natural hair is wavy in some curly in some spots straight in some so I relax it so I can manage it and weaves I dont like on me because you can only style it certain ways and you have to curl or flat iron it but I love my wigs if I want to be short today med the next or long for the weekend or wavy curly straight two toned so with wigs I can change in split second and dont have to do anything to my hair and a weave I cant just take off but whatever makes you feel good do it. Im a wig wearer for life I save money time etc but thats me.

  21. NettaIam Themainattraction Davis

    Once you think about it even if perms stayed down and hair purchases went down wouldn’t they make all that money back and natural hair care products I don’t know if its my location but most natural hair products are over priced the cheapest thing I’ve purchased in my year journey was eco styler gel for 4.99 everything else is at the least 10 $ more which grinds my gears because most of these companies are not black owned so makes you wonder how the hell do you know anything about black hair so either way we will be spending money @ the local beauty supply

  22. Jasmine Wilson

    Protective styling is great for both naturals and creamyCrack addicts [Everyone enjoys a good weave to take the stress off maintaining your own hair]

  23. Laquenza Clemons

    a sew and a wig are great for transition hair especially if you want to go natural, also very versatile, you want short hair put a weave in it, want long brailian hair, put a wig on, want an afro, wear your own,

  24. Kandace Kent

    Its an oxymoron. … we condem African American women for perming their hair but than we rejoice and debate over how many bundles and inches we can sew into our heads! Its all one in the same in every aspect we are condemning our heritage! So everyone get off your soapbox!

  25. Ayedin Jucaye

    Women are transitioning more and sew ins are are a great protective hair style..Down with the creamy Crack…lol

  26. Michelle Agee

    Ladies let’s remember the theme of the group as being one that uplifts and supports. At the end of the day all is advice because everyone is an adult and can do as we please. I enjoy ALL of what is shared and pick and choose to follow the advice I want. I am a new natural but forever a diva in my own right and love a good sew in when I can afford it. Be blessed beauties!!!!!

  27. Lozette Clemons

    Cheyenne cousins i have to agree with you there. Although the trend is slowly changing to natural looks there are dip many women of all colors that turn to wigs and weaves because they damaged their hair and when it looks healthy again will throw some relaxer in it. I see it time and time again.not all but some, but i feel you got to teach girls while they are young how to take care of their natural hair otherwise they won’t know till their hair is damaged when they get much older. Yes I’m speaking from experience.

  28. Jelisa A. Simmons

    I wear wigs real not real get weaves I love my wigs my hair will never be to my ass or anything I wont dye my natural hair so why not throw on a wig when ever I want :). I relax my roots ever few months or so olive oil treatments as much as I can I get lazy. My natural hair has come a long way will I wear it probably not like I dis when I was pregnant but I’m still a black woman my hair doesn’t define that or mean I wish I had good hair lol. Every race wear wigs, extensions all that so I don’t think it matters as long as your confident in your own skin I say ROCK it real fake long straight natural and all . 🙂

  29. Anna Rawls

    some see wigs and weaves as a protective style when we want straight hair but we no longer want to damage our hair with relaxers

  30. Janet Edwards

    Relaxer sales will continue to decline. Hairstylists better get with the program, the natural hair movement is not just a fad, it is here forever. We are gaining our independence of that creamy crack.

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