Friday, May 11, 2007

Tracing My Roots

My short life as a brunette is officially over. I only mention it because just last week I was in New York for the CEW Beauty Awards luncheon and people I see only every few months commented on my light brown hair. Next week I'll be in New Jersey for the SCC Suppliers' Day event and some of those same people will now see me as more of a blond. My natural color is blond and I think it suits me, even if at the root of the matter my real hair color today is nothing remotely like blond. I feel more like myself as a blond -- infer what you will from that. I tried life as a redhead back in the early nineties and, while it was fun, it just wasn't me.

Friends and relatives think I'm having an ongoing identity crisis, and my husband organizes a pool every time I make an appointment at my salon, but I don't mind. My hair grows quickly so it's no big deal to try something new, and my stylist likes to experiment, so I give her a lot of latitude. Salon color and styling products keep evolving and as someone who has struggled with thick wavy hair all my life, it is great to be able to try new styling products and tools -- that's right, not only is my hair color 'managed,' my hair is also not straight. I love this industry and I think of all the playing with my hair as my small salute to it. I am a baby boomer and I intend to take advantage of all the benefits that entails, including the attention lavished on boomers and our purchasing power. And if one day I decide to let my hair 'go natural,' I am sure there will be products that will help it be the best darn 'natural' it can be!

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

Changing the Way Beauty Does Business

I am back from a little blogging hiatus during which I traveled to several key industry events and recharged my battery a little. Come to think of it, I recharged a number of batteries several times each as I look back on the past month of travel. These days, I don't leave home without battery chargers for my Blackberry, camera, laptop and iPod, not to mention the devices themselves. Some days I need a battery charger for my sense of humor.

There was a press release in the inbox yesterday from the folks at The Benchmarking Company, with details of a recently completed study ranking top 100 beauty brands and top Internet sites by share of discussion. Results say more than 27 percent of women have posted a comment about a beauty brand on a message board, social networking site or blog, and 67 percent of women who participate in these sites are more likely to buy a beauty product if they read a good comment or review about it from their fellow consumers. The report, "Beauty and the Blog," is the first to track and analyze online female beauty behaviors and attitudes while identifying the actual sites and content direction of the dialogs.

"This is an exciting opportunity for the beauty industry to reach and educate women consumers in a way they're proving to be very open to," said Alisa Marie Beyer, president and CEO of The Benchmarking Company. "Women are talking about the beauty brands they are most frustrated with and those they adore with millions of women online. The Internet has truly become the world's largest and most influential water cooler. Providing consumers a place to create and share thoughts and opinions online has the potential to dramatically change how beauty brands do business."

I am standing by my water cooler, awaiting your thoughts...