Apparel won’t be the only star of New York Fashion Week. On Saturday, Target will sponsor Texture on the Runway, an event featuring hair-care styles for curly, coiled and wavy hair.
The invite-only event will be held at City Winery, spotlighting hairstyles from Au Naturale by Dark and Lovely, Cantu, Creme of Nature, Design Essentials and Garnier, among others. Target will offer a 10 percent discount on all participating brands on target.com and its mobile app through Feb. 20.
“Texture on the Runway was created to put hair center stage,” said Michelle Breyer, the president and cofounder of NaturallyCurly.com, a hair-care platform serving the more than 60 percent of the population with textured tresses. Breyer will host the event along with co-emcee Patrice Yursik of Afrobella.com and social media hostess Christina Brown of LoveBrownSugar.com.
Breyer said the goal of the event is to broaden consumer knowledge concerning the choices for women with textured hair, especially reaching the stylist population who are major resources for information. “What happens during Fashion Week has a major impact on not only apparel, but hairstyles and even what is stocked in stores,” she said. Textured hair products are among the fastest growing in the category as women seek alternatives to straightening their hair.
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The show this year illustrates how products for textured hair are no longer considered solely ethnic looks sold in segregated aisles.
“It really is the new general market,” explained Breyer, adding several niche brands are emerging, joining national powers in serving the market needs. “There really is nothing like this [fashion show] and it is a unique offering at Fashion Week. It resonates with a wide range of people who want to celebrate texture. The stylists are told at other shows how to style the models’ hair to match the clothing. Here, they get to let hair dictate the fashion.”
Added Ifeoma Fejokwu, Dark and Lovely’s senior brand manager, “Texture on the Runway is bringing the conversation of textured hair to life.”
There are compelling reasons to market to consumers with curly, coiled or wavy hair. According to TextureTrends 2016, TextureMedia’s annual consumer insights report, those shoppers spend 20 percent more than those with straight hair — buying multiple products that ring up the registers.
Gold level sponsors will have five models walk the runway with their own interpretation of trendy hairstyles. Additionally tables will be set up for product demonstrations. Erin Cast, vice president of marketing for Garnier Fructis, said her company’s theme will be “the power of curls that can,” featuring the brands’ Curl Nourish. “We continue to see an increase in the number of women who wear their curls with confidence, style and attitude,” she said.
Au Naturale by Dark and Lovely will focus on the versatility of textured hair. Models will be notable fashion and beauty bloggers, and former “Project Runway” contestant Samantha Black is creating a collection to bring their vision to life.
Cantu will focus its message on empowering women to embrace their uniqueness, said Dametria Mustin, Cantu’s global marketing director. “Our theme is All the Looks of You.”
An issue associated with textured hair is dryness, according to Taydra Jackson, vp of marketing for McBride Research Labs. “We will show women how to declare war on dryness, not their hair,” Jackson said of the representation of the Design Essentials brand. “There is still very little representation of curly women on the fashion runways so this is the perfect time.”
The line Curls will tout a new collection called Blueberry Bliss Curl, which is exclusive to Target, according to Mahisha Dellinger, Curls ceo and founder.
Consumers have been in the driver’s seat demanding more information on textured hair, said Breyer, who created her company after her frustration with not being able to find products for her curly hair. Jolorie Williams, vp of marketing for Revlon Professional, agreed consumers are leading the charge for more items and information. “We’re seeing a sense of love in the hair community for YouTube Tutorials and Instagram posts to Snapchats with blogger, vloggers and consumers discussing their hair looks of the day.”
Creme of Nature has prepared a Lady in Red theme this year.