With hair salons closing then reopening then closing again, regular routines and ‘treat yourself’ moments have largely been disrupted. Styling hair based on YouTube videos simply doesn’t compare with visiting the hair salon. For black women, our favourite salons offer more than just a new look, they are therapeutic spaces where we receive care and can offload life or work dilemmas to people who get it, skipping over the part where we have to explain ourselves.
Months before the global pandemic hit the UK, in December 2019 Statista valued the haircare market in Great Britain at £1.72 billion, recording that Black British women spend six times more than their white counterparts. It’s hard to say how that might have changed now, but one core fact remains: hair care is of the utmost importance to black women, especially because we’re the trendsetters of the beauty industry. It should therefore be no surprise that many of us couldn’t wait for restrictions to ease.