Your hairdresser may act like your best friend when you are sitting in her chair but the reality is that the salon industry is a cut throat business and the biggest deception in the whole game is the misunderstanding and mis-valuing of the importance of professional beauty products. Think for a moment about every shampoo commercial you have ever seen on television. Can you remember the names of the advertisers? Companies like Paul Mitchell, John Frieda, Herbal Essences, and L’Oreal among others are some of the biggest spenders of advertising dollars during day time television shows that target women. These advertisers are the exact people that do not want you reading this article.
Simply put, the professional beauty products industry is a multi-billion dollar a year business that in many instances reaps its profits at the expense of deceiving the very same customer base that it claims to help. The truth of the matter is that once you strip away the attractive models, beautiful celebrity endorsers, and fancy packaging you are left with a product that is not superior to the run of the mill drug store brand shampoo or conditioner that can be found in any low end grocery store or pharmacy. I am describing a situation that is very analogous to the concept of brand name pharmaceuticals compared to generic brand drugs that perform the same functions because their built from the same active ingredients. While the effectiveness of generic versus name brand stands the scrutiny of lab work including testing performed by the FDA the only discernible difference is that one version is circulated by an internationally recognizable brand name that charges a premium to financially support the continued advertisement and advancement of that brand image. This exact same concept applies to the business of beauty products and particularly shampoos and conditioners that are set at price points that are prohibitively expensive for the average consumer.
While many would argue that business is just business and that any consumer uninformed enough to spend top dollar when they can get the exact same product for a fraction of the cost is getting exactly what she deserves I would argue a different point. Consumer advocacy groups are in place to set standards regarding fair practices and to enforce anti-fraudulent behavior. The end consumer is ultimately responsible for how they use their spending power but the target market should also be considered when analyzing this specific case. Self-esteem and self image are two points in particular that deserve attention when evaluating the merits of the top tier brands that prey on consumer insecurities.
The way to put an end to this reckless assault on the American housewife is for women around the country to educate each other on the matter and then vote with their collective pocket books. Nothing sends a message like supporting a cause with purchasing power. Spread the message by sharing this article with a neighbor, sister, or friend so that the message will be heard throughout the hair product industry that enough is enough.