• Even though African-American women make up less than 10% of the population they buy 70% of all wigs and extensions purchased in the United States.
• Where does the money end up? Following the money, we see that black dollars are pumped into Korean owned businesses. Koreans dominate the Black hair industry. In fact, a top beauty magazine about African -American hair is only published in Korean (Beauty Times) for black beauty store owners.
• In South Central, Los Angeles, the owner of Beautiful Wigs says 99.9% of his clientele are African-American.
• Koreans have been creating their own products, which are sold in black beauty supply stores. By creating their own line, they buy out existing black-owned companies and control retail and wholesale distribution.
• Many Korean owned stores refuse to purchase black produced hair products. They are telling black companies that their products are no longer in demand.
• The archives of a (The Chosun) respected newspaper in Korea reveal a relationship between early Korean business owners and the United States that has existed since the 60s. The government was urged to ban the export of raw hair so that no one, except for Koreans, could export Korean hair. Months after the Korean ban, the US banned the import of wigs made from Chinese hair! This ban on Chinese wigs allowed Korean wig merchants to have a monopoly on the wig and weave business.
• A quote from The Chosun: “In the past, wigs were considered luxury goods in the West, but these days they are considered a necessity, especially among black women in the United States.”
For more information, check out Aron Rainen’s documentaries on black hair. They can be found in the side bar under the documenthairies section.