PHOTO GALLERY: The Business of Black Haircare

AHBAI-Logo_image

In 1987, Irving Bottner, president of Revlon’s professional products division, incited the ire of members of the American Health and Beauty Aids Institute (AHBAI), the Chicago-based black haircare trade association, when he told Newsweek: “In the next couple of years, the black-owned businesses will disappear. They’ll all be sold to white companies.” The AHBAI’s response to the threat was to initiate a $2 million “buy black” campaign targeted to African American consumers. The AHBAI  Proud Lady logo was placed on members’ product packaging. At that time, there were five black haircare companies on the BE Top 100 – Soft Sheen, M&M Products, Johnson Products, Pro-line Corp. and American Beauty Products – representing $210.5 million – 6.4% of the list’s collective sales. (Image: AHBAI logo and Proud Lady symbol)

In 1987, Irving Bottner, president of Revlon’s professional products division, incited the ire of members…