Textured hair in France: in the spotlights like never before

Over 565% development in 2022 for Les Secrets de Loly, 4 openings in lower than 4 years for Baraboucle, the newest of which is coming quickly in Lille, manufacturers from the United States and the UK, corresponding to Carol’s Daughter and Bouclème: the French marketplace for pure care merchandise for textured hair is booming!
The time period “textured hair” is definitely fairly current. It covers all hair varieties that aren’t straight, together with wavy, curly, frizzy and kinky hair. “Not so way back, the time period “ethnic hair” was nonetheless used. We’ve come a good distance! We made our debut in Carrefour hypermarkets in the 2000s with what was referred to as a “tropical” operation, and for a very long time we remained in the “merchandise of the world” part before transferring into the hair care part a lot later,” recollects Jean-Claude Cheffre, Head of the Activilong model, a part of the Labomai Group (Laboratoires Miss Antilles International), which was created in 1953 by his mom, Yannick Cheffre [1].
“For a very long time in mainland France, textured hair was nearly completely excluded from retail cabinets and even amongst hairdressers, who didn’t know how one can fashion this sort of hair,” factors out Camille Scouarnec, Product Manager at Énergie Fruit.
From Michael Jackson’s Jheri curl to the “relaxed” curl
From the mid-Nineteen Seventies onwards, French nationals from French abroad departments and territories (DOM-TOM) started to maneuver to mainland France. It was presently that the first specialised salons appeared. Unlike right this moment’s salons, methods in vogue at the time included texture modification, with the inevitable hair straightening, synthetic curls made well-liked in the United States by Michael Jackson, and chemical colouring…
“These denaturing seems to be had been all over the place: on French tv, in the magnificence pages of magazines, and had been progressively turning into acquainted to folks. So after we depart our hair pure or braid it, it’s as if our hair hadn’t been completed,” explains Josiane Ologbi, founding father of the minimalist model Iwalewa. “In the United States and now in Europe, we’re progressively transferring away from these preconceived concepts, and that’s unbelievable! It’s nonetheless onerous in some African nations, corresponding to Senegal, which I go to frequently. It’s troublesome to do away with magnificence requirements which were ingrained for many years, nevertheless it’s taking place,” she says with a smile.
In addition to the stress arising from aesthetic – and even social – requirements against the nature of our hair, straightening practices and different texture modifications are proving to be very aggressive and lift well being points: burnt, damaged, ultra-sensitised hair. A just lately performed American research by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) even confirmed a hyperlink between the use of straightening merchandise and the improvement of uterine most cancers.
An upswing that was fairly discreet at the begin
“When I created Les Secrets de Loly in 2009, the vary of merchandise for textured hair in France was pretty restricted, however there was already a backlash in opposition to silicone-laden merchandise and a urgent want for hair care merchandise with pure elements,” recollects Kelly Massol, founding father of the Les Secret de Loly model, which now sells a product each eight seconds in France!
As for Michele Scott-Lynch, founding father of the British model Bouclème, which has been progressively coming into the French market since the starting of the yr, she explains that it was when her daughter requested her to straighten her hair that issues clicked. “I spent all my teenagers and twenties preventing in opposition to my hair, making an attempt to vary its look and straighten it, and damaging it because of this. There was no query of historical past repeating itself”. This is why, in 2014, she launched a model to care for each sort of hair curl with tailor-made routines to cleanse, situation and outline them.
“What’s vital to grasp is that the curlier the hair, the drier the lengths and the better the want for hydration,” stresses Camille Scouarnec. This is as a result of sebum accumulates at the roots, slowed down by the hair’s floor, leaving lengths and ends dehydrated. “At Énergie Fruit, our motto is to supply clear, clear merchandise for all, with out compromising on pleasure or effectivity. Since the model was created in 2012, we’ve been providing a shampoo and masks for curly hair below the title “Coco Curl.” By speaking to our on-line group, we realised that the routine wasn’t complete sufficient. That’s why this yr we’ve launched a styling gel and an anti-split finish and anti-crease sublimating oil. What’s extra, we’ve additionally launched the Nutri-Intense vary, with three merchandise: a shampoo, a masks and a styling milk, for curly to frizzy hair,” specifies Camille Scouarnec.
Social networks, lock-downs, the growth in naturalness: the snowball impact
“With the proliferation of merchandise on supply, retailers at the moment are paying very shut consideration to the textured hair phase,” says Jean-Claude Cheffre with a smile. Until now, French folks with curly and frizzy hair had little alternative however to order merchandise from the different aspect of the world or purchase them at excessive costs from only some distributors, who had been usually solely to be discovered in massive cities.
“With Les Secrets de Loly, my ambition has all the time been, on the one hand, to supply a variety of pure merchandise for sustaining curly hair and, on the different, to make this model accessible to everybody! That’s why, with my gross sales supervisor, we’re working onerous on our distribution community. We’re current in Monoprix, hundreds of chemists, well being and wonder shops, hairdressers and, since 18 September, we’re accessible at Sephora,” explains Kelly Massol [2].
The model has additionally completed outstanding work on its social networks, rising from 20,000 followers at the finish of 2017 to greater than 250,000 in September 2023, thanks in specific to the creation of Christmas bins with influencers corresponding to La Petite Gaby, Babyatoutprix, Kaaymbl, Crazy Sally… The model has even ventured to broadcast its first TV promoting marketing campaign in November 2020, in the midst of confinement, on the channels of the TF1 Group. The advert will probably be seen by 2.5 million folks. A real stroke of genius on the a part of Secrets de Loly, whose claims are to dare – finally – put on one’s hair naturally. During this time of return to fundamentals, the “pure magnificence” development took off, each in haircare and skincare.
Morgane Brisson, founding father of the Baraboucle hairdressing salons, says that there actually has been “a “pre” and an “publish” confinement interval in the transfer to pure curls. I imagine that individuals realised how good it felt for his or her hair to not be straightened and tied up all the time.” After three openings in Paris between 2020 and 2023, Baraboucle will quickly open its fourth salon in Lille in November, offering a chance to focus on Belgium, the place demand is powerful, and to fulfill the wants of individuals in Lille who used to journey backwards and forwards to Paris simply to get their hair completed and search recommendation. It takes a mean of six weeks to get an appointment at certainly one of the model’s three present salons, which exhibits the have to democratise the vary of remedies on supply, but additionally to extend the variety of locations the place hair curls might be taken care of.
Education and coaching of hairdressers: the occupation is getting organised
Since the begin of the new educational yr, a certification programme devoted solely to curly, frizzy and kinky hair is obtainable in 5 accredited pilot centres (in the Île-de-France, Hérault, Southern France, Moselle and Normandy areas), with different institutions set to affix the checklist shortly. The programme, which is able to final 217 hours (31 days), will probably be made up of 8 modules.
“The implementation of this certification is an actual step ahead for the business, and the hype round it’s a good factor, displaying that there are actual talent gaps in phrases of hairdressing and styling textured hair. On the different hand, it’s going to take years to develop, and it solely issues people who find themselves nonetheless at college,” stresses Kelly Massol. “The reality right this moment is that there are fewer than 200 hairdressing salons in France that know how one can deal with this sort of hair. It’s a problem that Les Secret de Loly has been drawing consideration to for fairly a while now, notably with the rising cross-breeding in our nation. We don’t realise what number of white moms take their frizzy-haired daughters to their normal hairdresser for the first time and discover themselves going through a wall. There are hundreds of them,” she explains. That’s why the founding father of Secrets de Loly has determined to open her hair academy specialising in textured hair in the first quarter of 2024, in the seventh arrondissement of Paris. The centre will probably be devoted solely to coaching present hair professionals.
At the identical time, in 2019, L’Oréal organised, alongside business professionals, a mirrored image on the method to improve the hairdressing sector, which led the French group to create Real Campus. “It is an element hairdressing college, half entrepreneurial college, and awards a bachelor’s diploma. It’s the highest qualification you may get in hairdressing. At Real Campus, curly, frizzy and kinky hair bootcamps are organised, instructing individuals the totally different methods concerned in hair care rituals, massages, styling and haircuts,” concludes Margarida Condado, International Development Deputy Managing Director of L’Oréal’s Consumer Products Division.


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