Entrepreneur Keenan Beasley was shocked to discover that 40% of Black women in America don’t exercise at times because it is too time-consuming and expensive to maintain their hair after a sweaty workout. As a former vice president of marketing at L’Oréal and brand manager at Procter & Gamble, he had the skills to help address the needs of this demographic. So in 2020, he launched Sunday II Sunday, a line of products specifically tailored to women with textured hair who work out regularly throughout the week.
Fast Company: What made you realize there was a need for these hair-care products?
Keenan Beasley: Most Black people have coily hair. Their hair follicle is not round, it’s elliptical. This means that the distribution of sebum, hair’s natural moisturizer, is uneven. Because of that, we have typically drier hair, which is why we don’t want to wash it every day because it makes it even drier and causes breakage. So [SIIS] developed a dry shampoo, Root Refresh, a mild, micellar rinse to help get some of that salt and buildup off the hair without completely drying or destroying the style.
Do you see your brand expanding beyond women with textured hair?
Our focus has been women of color because they are the most negatively impacted by the lack of hair-care products. Women in general are washing their hair a lot less frequently than they used to because they realize that they shouldn’t strip their hair of natural oils if they want to keep their scalp and hair in an optimal state. So our addressable market becomes quite large. We’re seeing a lot of women without textured hair buying some of our products, particularly Root Refresh, which rinses hair between washes.
You’ve called your product line the “athleisure of hair care.” What does that mean?
A decade ago, clothes were a lot more uncomfortable: women’s heels were higher, men’s pants were tighter. But then people got sick of that, and casual athleisure wear became acceptable, even in professional and formal environments. The same is happening in beauty and hair care. We’re moving away from super-glam makeup and heavy contouring, replacing it with natural beauty. With hair, we’re not going to hair salons to create involved styles. We want a daily style that feels good and is both comfortable and easy to maintain.
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