Perusing the internet again, I run across an article on hairpreneur Heloisa “Zica” Assis of Rio De Janiero who is featured on BBC’s “My Business Spotlight”
Her story reminds me of Hair product empires like Carol’s Daughter and Miss Jessie’s. They saw a need growing up and wanted to find something that worked for their hair. This owner has a salon and products in Brazil called Beleza Natural which means Natural Beauty in Portuguese. She started off in a small house in the backyard and then she now has 12 salons across the country and more than 1,400 employees. Wow! That is AMAZING and huge! I had never looked in the Brazilian hair market besides looking for Brazilian Hair Extensions. Lol. It is definitely a misconception that the women in Brazil all have long straight tresses that we see in advertisement and commercials. Alot of them look just like us with thick, curly hair.
Half of Brazil’s population is black or mixed race, but the beauty industry was mainly focused on the ones of European descent. Zica and the three partners who joined her found a hungry market.
I was surprised at this. I knew there were alot of people of African decent in Brazil due to the slave trade, but had no idea it was half of the population.
Her best seller appears to be like a texturizer of some sort called “Super Relaxing” that takes “afro” hair into a looser texture and the treatment costs $35 USD. Each month, 80,000 people come to her salons. That is HUGE!
Although the treatment has a strong appeal to people of African descent, Zica does not define her target market by race. Whether black or white, she points out that three-quarters of Brazilians have frizzy or curly hair.
“The market simply didn’t see this before me! People with curly hair were forgotten.”
She created a niche in Brazil and became a huge success. She had a dream, convinced her husband to sell his taxi, and took the Brazilian haircare industry by storm. I love to see Black women around the world doing so well in the hair industry. Check her salon and products out at BelezaNatural.com.br
For the full article and video interview with the owner, please go to BBC