Hair care industry leader Ernest Daurham dies in Arizona

Ernest Daurham Jr., who grew up in Altgeld Gardens public housing on the far south facet of Chicago and graduated from Carver High School, died August 21 in Arizona. He is finest recognized for his Leisure Curl hair care system which he launched in 1985.
Daurham was a number one pressure in the creation and distribution of Black hair care merchandise beginning in the late 60s. He held a barber’s license, a cosmetology license, a cosmetology teacher’s license, and a barber teacher’s license. He parlayed his barber and cosmetology skills right into a profitable enterprise, buying the salon the place he initially acquired his abilities and growing a booming clientele.
Daurham began retailing a sure product for his prospects he referred to as the “Good Fred Oil,” and created an enormous marketplace for it in his salon. As the product turned common amongst his shoppers, the producer of this model couldn’t sustain with demand, Daurham took the elements from the again label of the bottle and started to experiment with the chemical compounds himself.
By 1979, he was so busy making merchandise to maintain up with the demand that he didn’t have time to model or reduce hair anymore. By 1980, he established D-Orum Hair Products Inc., to deal with the distinctive hair care wants of the African American client market with which he was so acquainted. Buyers from Walgreens and different magnificence provide shops contacted him and began carrying his product.

By 1982, he invented a no-rod curl package referred to as the “Chicago Curl” and made his first two million {dollars}. The “Chicago Curl” was distinctive as a result of at the moment all the opposite curl firms have been rolling the hair to realize the curl; the “Chicago Curl” required no rollers, and was rather a lot simpler and quicker to do. During that very same time, a competing firm that had been in the enterprise 20 years earlier than Daurham, with a longtime promoting program and distribution channels, launched the same product and nearly took over his market.
By 1985, along with his again towards the wall, and almost out of enterprise, Daurham got here out with one other product to deal with the wants of the African American client haircare market. The product was referred to as “Leisure Curl,” a dry non-oily relaxer look that required no plastic cap.
With this product Daurham modified the wonder industry in two dynamic methods, neither of which it’s stated, might ever occur once more in the wonder industry.

This product was so distinctive and common, and took the market so quick that different firms got here out with copycat product traces, so the retail shops needed to create a brand new class for it referred to as the “Dry Curl Market.” This was the corporate’s flagship model that took Daurham, his household, workers and fashions to just about each nation in the world selling his merchandise.

Daurham additionally modified the best way many distributors did enterprise in these days. Because he created such an enormous demand for the “Leisure Curl,” he demanded the cash for his product ($250,000 minimal order) earlier than the product was shipped, though 30 to 60 days credit score was the traditional approach of doing enterprise in the wonder industry, and in many circumstances, required no minimal order. In the two-year interval–1989 and 1990, the Leisure Curl gross sales skyrocketed to slightly greater than $20 million in gross sales.
Financial success although welcomed, was by no means the only real motivating issue on Durham’s path towards success. He appeared again with delight on the household and group background that had made him robust. Daurham used his private {and professional} assets to succeed in again and assist others.
In 1991, he established the Ernest Daurham Community Foundation to help group, social, instructional and employment alternatives in the African American group. In 1992, he established the Daurham Institute of Hair Technology, a FREE COSMETOLOGY SCHOOL the place single moms and others residing beneath a sure earnings degree might attend; their tuition was paid for by the Ernest Daurham Community Foundation. In addition to the cosmetology college, Daurham opened 5 magnificence salons across the Chicago and Gary, Indiana space, and his firm employed over 150 individuals, creating job alternatives.

In later years he developed a common market line of merchandise to fulfill the wants of shoppers who need curly or wavy hair, referred to as “The Biracial Blend Multi-Texture Styling System,” addressing the hair care wants of individuals of all nationalities and hair textures.
In 2004, Daurham bought his firm, and in 1997 bought his Chicago mansion, “The Castle of Olympia Fields,” to R&B singer R. Kelly, and retired to Scottsdale, Arizona.
Guided by a household with a powerful sense of values Ernest Daurham Jr. dedicated his life to the success he so deservingly achieved as founder, chairman, and chief government officer of the corporate that bears his identify, Daurham Corporation.

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