“Product Freak”, first black-owned magnificence provide retailer opens in Flossmoor

Black hair care is a billion greenback business. 2018 Nielsen reviews that African American girls spent $54 million on magnificence and hair merchandise in 2017. Most magnificence provides come from Koreans. Korean Individuals run 70% of magnificence provide shops. It’s estimated that 20% of magnificence provide shops are black-owned. Extra black girls are opening magnificence provide shops which might be core to the black neighborhood and prospects flock to companies which might be closely monitored and adopted with out discriminatory practices, equivalent to. Many African American girls patronize black-owned magnificence provide shops to flow into black {dollars} locally.

A kind of girls is entrepreneur Christie Dinkins. In 2021, Dinkins made her dream a actuality by opening Product Freak, a magnificence provide retailer based mostly in Flosmoor, IL, which is a one-stop-shop for all issues magnificence, together with artificial and human hair bundles, lace entrance and full lace wigs. Pure hair care merchandise, hair equipment to satisfy the wants of ladies of each background and hair texture. Product Freak is adjoining to different black-owned companies referred to as Flossmoor’s Black Wall Avenue.

Chicago Defenders: What received you within the magnificence provide business, and what have been the challenges?

Christy Dinkins: I labored in underwriting in Company America for over 20 years. The factor that impressed me to enter the wonder provide business is that I really like all issues magnificence, and I wished to open up a protected area for patrons to come back and store. The primary wrestle within the magnificence provide business is getting extra African Individuals.

Chicago Defender: Koreans dominate and management the American magnificence provide business. Has it been problematic with respect to distribution?

KD: Korean Individuals positively management the business. I hear it is simpler now due to the racial injustice that occurred on the peak of the pandemic that extra African Individuals are supporting black companies. There are nonetheless main gamers within the magnificence business who refuse to work with us. In the event that they resolve to work with us and allow us to open an account, they’re all the time out of inventory after we need to purchase common merchandise. The business is not glad that African Individuals are opening magnificence provide shops.

Chicago Defenders: Why is it vital to assist black magnificence provide companies?

KD: The primary factor is the circulation of black {dollars}. My counterpart shouldn’t be spending cash within the black neighborhood. They’re taking their cash and making purchases of their neighborhood. Supporting black companies strengthens success and creates job alternatives. I reside in a black neighborhood. I get my gasoline and go grocery purchasing at black-owned companies. Supporting black companies is essential.

Chicago Defender: I am certain you have skilled going into magnificence provide shops owned by non-black house owners and being seen and adopted. How did that make you are feeling?

KD: It made me really feel devalued. They do not worth us as individuals and as prospects. I had stopped going to magnificence provide shops and began ordering my merchandise on-line. I’ve endorsed black-owned magnificence provide shops previously. I opened a magnificence provide retailer as a result of I did not like how black girls have been handled.

Chicago Defender: What adjustments would you prefer to see within the magnificence business?

KD: I wish to see black individuals in all elements of the wonder business. We’d like extra black distributors.

The Chicago Defenders: What recommendation would you give to somebody aspiring to get into the wonder business?

KDOne of the best recommendation is to be sure to do your analysis into the wonder business, increase sufficient capital, and have a fantastic assist system.

Product Freak is positioned at 3321 Volmer Rd, Flossmoor, IL. For alerts on new magnificence merchandise, observe Product Freak on social media @productfreakbeauty.

Tammy Gibson is a author, reenactment and black historical past traveler. Discover him on social media @sankofatravelher.

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