You’re right, hotels don’t have products for curly hair. But why not?

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By Webdesk

Set of hotel toiletries collection with travel pack of shower gel, soap, shampoo and hair conditioner close to geometric shapes against pastel pink background with copy space.  Advertising conceptImage source: Getty/brizmaker

In a matter of weeks, your social media feed will be filled with photos of people trotting to exotic locations to enjoy the warmth of the summer months. For some, that means finding your favorite protective style or picking out your basic manicure for the season. To others, it seems like stocking up on your favorite hair products and travel packs in anticipation of the lack of options at hotels and other accommodations.

Depending on where you’re going, buying beauty products once you arrive can cost a pretty penny due to everything from a lack of accessibility to the general “tourist tax” (when surcharges are added to products sold in areas primarily occupied by non-residents). citizens are visited). Typically, that’s where hotels come in, stacking rooms with shampoo, conditioner and shower gel that are then refilled by the cleaning department. The problem is that these products never really work for hair types other than fine to “normal.”

It’s a problem that’s all too common but never really addressed. Entrepreneur Hannah Bronfman discussed her experience as a traveler with curly hair in a TikTok that has since received thousands of views. “I find traveling with hair care really annoying because so many products are required,” she says in the video. “But every time I come to a hotel, there are no products for textured hair.” While some hotels include beauty items in their minibar offerings, as reported by Glossy, hair care is rarely among the options.

This got us thinking: what exactly goes into choosing the hair products in hotel pantries, and why are so few meant for curly hair types? As it turns out, there’s a lot more to the strategy than meets the eye.


Wake up hotel companies, almost 70% of the people in the world have curly hair!! #fyp #b2b #business #venture #beauty #haircare #trend #businessidee

♬ original sound – hannahbronfman

How hotels choose hair products

To begin with, purchasing the products is a multi-layered process. “The item should speak to and for the hotel brand,” Patrick Fernandes, executive director of the Carillon Miami Wellness Resort (which stocks the Geneva Green line, which has a two-in-one hair and body wash), tells POPSUGAR . “It also has to meet local requirements – for example, the use of plastic products – and be practical for guests.” In addition, the selected product line should work for a range of different hair and skin types, as well as conditions, such as dandruff. “Shampoo products will also suit the location and what most guests will be dealing with when they visit the property.”

So say you go to a beachfront property where guests frequently use the beach or pools, the product line used there may lean more towards combating the drying effects of chlorine. Usually they would then go to their room and find products from brands like Le Labo, CO Bigelow, or even Malin + Goetz if they were in more luxurious accommodations, but more often than not there were no unbranded products labeled “shampoo” and “conditioner.”

As for how a hotel decides to move forward with a hair care brand in the first place, sometimes it’s a game of give and take. “Understanding that not every box can be ticked, a hotel will generally select a product that can accommodate the most guests,” says Fernandes. In addition, many hoteliers don’t go to the normal beauty stores like Sallys or Target to buy their beauty products, so the brands they stock may not be familiar to the everyday pedestrian. “Hotels usually have a Group Purchasing Organization (GPO) that maintains relationships that are useful to hotels,” says Fernandes. “Many companies also buy mailing lists and approach a hotel that way.”

For Cessie Cerrato, founder of Cessie C. Communications, the hair care product choices for many of the hospitality brands she worked with came down to saving money. “Hotels often buy in bulk to keep costs down, so it makes it a little more challenging to have shampoos for all types of hair,” she says.

Still, as someone with curly hair herself, Cerrato has come up with a few hacks to tote her entire hair care routine with while traveling. “Sometimes I ask to borrow some of the better products from the hotel hair salon, which usually offers more diversity in the product offering,” says Cerrato. “I once forgot my blowout brush at home during my travels and the salon was kind enough to lend me one of the good ones. More often than not, they’ll be nice about that.”

How hotels can better serve tourists of all hair types

Even, technically the products placed in rooms should be able to work on all hair types, many places don’t take into account how much moisture curly hair needs or even more so how much product people with textured hair tend to use. Now, right or wrong, many people with thicker, more voluminous hair tend to use more than the recommended small amount of product to get the lather they look for when washing their hair. This means that the small bottles provided by the hotels are unlikely to last half a person’s wash. When that happens, they either have to pay for overpriced hair products or pack their own, neither of which is ideal. But how does this issue fit with companies that prioritize cost savings above all else?

While the current situation for hair products in hotels is often less than ideal, Cerrato recognizes that the industry is changing. “I’ve seen a huge increase in luxury hotels partnering with beauty brands, not just the spa,” she says. “Brands like Natura Bisse, Dermalogica and L’occitane can be found in hotels around the world and the options are fantastic.”

Still, there’s a striking opportunity for a company to make textured hair care products a staple in hotels around the world. It’s something people are willing to put money behind — just take Bronfman, who has said she’d invest in a charity like this to make the hotel experience much better for herself and other people with textured hair.

The inclusiveness of beauty products in the hospitality industry is constantly evolving, and it’s a space that Cerrato would like to see continue to flourish. “I think we’re really going to see more diversity in the products as hotels become more aware of their guests’ demand for diverse products,” she says.

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