Solving specific problems: Sunday II Sunday on haircare, equity and inclusion in 2022
Let's talk a little bit about treatment-focused hair and scalp preparations. What do you see happening in that area in 2022?
I definitely think that this continued conversation around the skinification of hairs is going to be huge in 2022. This year we saw some conversations emerging around self-care and wellness and how that extends into your hair. There's a conversation that's beginning to happen about how your scalp is also skin.
In the same way that you have those multi-step regimens for your face and perhaps your body, we’re exploring what that looks like for hair. We know that healthy hair comes from a healthy scalp, so I think there's going to be a huge focus on how we can nourish and treat the scalp going forward.
Your company is defined as an athleisure haircare brand. Can you tell me a little more about what that means?
Sunday II Sunday is all about bridging the gap for the active woman. We know that our target consumers are engaged in activities anywhere from two to six or seven days a week.
We saw that there was a gap. You have the standard hair care products that you would use to wash and style your hair etc. But after your workouts, you don't look anything like you did before you started that workout, particularly for textured haired-consumers.
There's also some science to what happens on the scalp when we sweat during a workout. Some of our products are really focused on that transition, helping you bounce back from that post-workout, getting you back to the hair that you love, getting rid of any sort of edge, odor, inflammation that are byproducts of the very natural biological function of sweat.
What value do you see in this kind of haircare brand that's focused on a consumer with a specific lifestyle?
What's really fun about the Sunday II Sunday team is that we all fit within that lifestyle. We're all active women with textured hair. For me, the value in that is that we're reaching a consumer whose need has been not fully addressed or ignored.
With textured hair, we know that textured hair tends to be drier than straighter hair based on how the sebum production works and flows from the roots of the hair down the lengths. Because textured haired-consumers are already more predisposed to dry hair, and the impact of sweat actually exacerbates that, we know that she has a need post-workout.
For example, I have a need post-workout where my hair is sweaty, it's a bit gross, it's also itchy, which is a byproduct of that the salt crystals in sweat after your workout. The value for us is helping women that lead active lifestyles not have to make decisions about whether they're going to work out or not based on their hair, based on their appearance or beauty preferences.
There are scenarios where, you may say “oh, I have a special event to go to on this day and my hair needs to last, so I won't work out or I'm going to heavily modify my workout because my hair won't make it to X date.” We want to bridge that gap and empower women in that way to be able to say “hey, no, you don't have to choose, you can have great hair and a hardcore workout.”
What can other cosmetics industry professionals learn going into 2022 from your brand’s success with this model?
As in all things, it's about listening and understanding what the consumer needs are. We know that women with textured hair and all women who work out have very specific needs. It's about that listening, it's about that feedback, it's about really understanding how to best meet her needs and integrate them into her lifestyle.
We're not selling a solution that's kind of superfluous. Our hero SKU, for example, Root Refresh, which is our dry shampoo alternative that's driven by micellar water and apple cider vinegar, is our hero SKU for a reason.
It's kind of revolutionary in that category, where we're able to provide a clear solution that's effective, with natural botanicals that are vegan and free of all the no-no ingredients that she doesn't really gravitate towards.
Moving on to the diversity equity inclusion area, what do you see happening in that area in 2022?
We're definitely looking to see those conversations continue because we saw that there was tons of awareness, tons of interest.
In the area of diversity and representation within the industry, and across hair textures and types, we saw that come to a crescendo, if you will, in 2020, around the George Floyd protests and the aftermath of that. We saw tons of brands and companies really getting involved in investment in social justice issues.
In 2022, consumers are really going to be looking for brands to still be holding themselves to those things that they committed to, whether that be things like the 15% pledge or promises to invest or create spaces within companies and organizations. Consumers are going to be expecting, for lack of a better phrase, to keep that energy.
We saw that these issues had your attention in 2020, we saw that to a degree that kept your attention in 2020 into 2021, and now into 2022. Don't think you can drop that ball or that no one's paying attention because we are. That's very much going to be the energy for the new year.
What do you see the steps for Sunday II Sunday being in 2022? What are the next steps for the company?
We think 2022 is going to ramp up to be a huge year. I'm not exactly at liberty to share a lot of the details, but we do have some exciting innovations coming forward. There will definitely be some newness from Sunday II Sunday in the active haircare category. We're expanding into some more exciting retail partnerships. We're excited about growth and expansion in 2022 For sure.
What kind of consumer interests have you seen in the brand?
We've got some fantastic responses. We know that our key demo women with textured hair, and we know that particular consumer is very discerning, and she's very vocal. If she loves something, she'll tell everyone. If she hates something, she'll also tell everyone.
What we've learned just in this last year and a half of launching is that we have products that she absolutely loves that really provide a solution and solve a real problem. We've gotten great feedback.