Carlos Rojas, vice president of global sales for Biotop Professional, talks to Happi about professional hair care as it regains its footing after the pandemic, holiday style and how brands and suppliers can work together to elevate the category.
HAPPI: How would you describe 2021 and what it has done to the hair care industry? Did the salon industry come back from a devastating 2020?
Rojas: In 2021, like with so many service industries, we started to see a reemergence of the salon industry and salon clientele. Slower at first but then, busier and busier, especially after vaccines became available and restrictions were lifted. While traditional salon services like color returned with a vengeance, it was accompanied by a new demand for more maintainable and natural services. After months of being forced to go “all natural,” many consumers opted for salon services that lightly enhanced their natural hair color or texture and were easier to maintain with at-home care. They either wanted to be prepared for the next lock-down, stretch their dollar in between services or embrace their own natural hair color and texture. As a result, we saw stylists and salons shifting their service and product offerings to reflect this. This opened up the salon for more retail and at-home-use product-selling opportunities. Color maintenance or color-enhancing products, toning shampoos, at-home blowout products, self-care-inspired hair treatments and especially masks and serums that care for both the scalp and hair. This shift in consumer demand definitely allowed professional brands and salons to have that retail conversation with their clients and consumers and it was taken more seriously to help maintain their desired styles.
The pandemic accelerated changes to digital that were already underway by about five years. 2022 offers the opportunity to charge ahead with a new perspective and more digitally savvy way of doing business to help salons grow and succeed and help consumers experience beauty on their terms.
HAPPI: What is in store for Holiday 2021? Do you think consumers will get up and get out and try some glamorous hair styles for the end-of-year celebrations?
Rojas: Yes! We are already seeing positive signs, as our holiday promotions sold out well in advance. People are ready to travel by plane or car and see their friends and relatives again. They want to look their best as they re-emerge into the world. Because our holiday boxes are attractive, innovative and affordable, there is great opportunity.
HAPPI: How will they accomplish those looks; what products will be in demand?
Rojas: Scalp care is one of the fastest-growing categories in beauty—especially with younger consumers who are concerned about the environment and its impact on their skin. Biotop Professional’s shampoos, conditioners, masks and serums have always cared for the scalp and hair.
Pro Silver mask
No matter what look you desire, starting with healthy, nourished, hydrated hair and scalp will make the finished style stand out. Masks like our 911 Quinoa, 007 Keratin or 69 for curly hair provide the foundation that lets you style with confidence that your hair will stand up to the heat.
A big trend that’s only going to grow is wearing your natural gray or silver or coloring your hair silver, gray, blonde or platinum. Our 19 Pro Silver Collection, including shampoo, mask and oil, helps banish brass, frizz and flyaways, while keeping strands on tone.
Finally, this is the perfect time of year to try new lightweight hair serums that provide multiple benefits. Biotop Professional’s 911 Quinoa Serum for fine hair and 007 Keratin Serum for coarse or damaged hair help nourish hair, provide heat protection and control split ends, while adding hydration and shine.
HAPPI: Are there ingredients/products that you can’t do without? If so, what are they and why?
Superfood quinoa powers Biotop’s 911 Series.
Rojas: At Biotop Professional, our key ingredient is the superfood quinoa, which powers our best-selling 911 Series. Our 911 Shampoo, Mask and Serum use natural quinoa extract plus natural oils and Fatty acids to provide a foundation of daily nutrition and hydration for the scalp and hair, helping keep locks shiny, smooth and strong.
Our Biotop Professional 007 Series taps into the reparative powers of keratin, which naturally makes up most of the hair shaft. Formulas help revitalize coarse, damaged and chemically compromised hair.
HAPPI: What would you like to see from hair care companies? What can they do to make products better? Similarly, what ingredients work and what don’t and what should raw material suppliers keep in mind when developing new ingredients?
Rojas: At Biotop Professional, we start with pH-balanced formulas with a base of 100% purified Water to optimize each product’s performance. We use a special process that ensures the pH is maintained at seven stages during manufacturing. The result is purely balanced formulas that help the hair and scalp absorb the key ingredients more easily.
Haircare companies and raw materials suppliers must continue to work to fulfill hair stylists’ and consumers’ demands for products that are as natural and sustainable as possible while ensuring they are effective at providing the benefits they claim. The wellness trend will continue to grow in importance, so the demand will continue to grow for wholistic products that are healthy for the complete person and the earth.
Hairdressers and consumers are more aware of what’s inside a product than ever, and they want to do business with brands that uphold their promises. When brands meet their challenges, the entire beauty industry will be better positioned to thrive.