Why are Waist Beads so Expensive in the USA but cheap in Africa?

December 14, 2021

Why are Waist Beads so Expensive in the USA but cheap in Africa?
Why do the African waist beads that are sold in the USA  so expensive when they cost so low in Africa?

As a waist beads maker and seller, this question has always been interesting to me. In most situations I have heard this question from other Africans who claim that they refuse to pay ten to twenty dollars ($10 - $20) for something that they could have purchased for less in Africa.

Some of these women seem annoyed or even judgmental that someone would purchase something for less and sell it for more. If you buy clothes that are made in China or another developing country, it is the same concept. The seller bought the clothes or shoes at a cheaper rate than they sell them in order to make profit.

I promise you that all successful companies have that basic model, the product that they provide is made at a lower cost than the price that they charge for it, that is how profit is made.

Another major factor that these people don't understand is that labor is significantly different in the USA compared to Africa. Based on the cost of living in Accra, a bead vendor may be willing to sell intricate waist beads that took hours to make for 20 cedis ($3 -$4). An American waist beads maker who spends hours on an intricate design would charge $60 for that same product because of the cost of labor in this country and the high cost of living and materials. This is why so many companies make products in developing countries.  

Shipping is also another reason why waist beads cost more that $3 in America even when vendors import them from Africa. Shipping from African to the states is not like shipping from China to the states. It is extremely expensive to ship items. You may find low cost waist beads in Africa, but the shipping price will be high. Vendors who are able to ship bulk items may save money but a small business owner would still have to pay high shipping prices.

Branding also factors into the final price of a product. Shipping mailers, tape, label printers, business cards, thankful cards are some things that will also factor into the overall price of the final product.

Please keep all of these in mind. Small business owners are not trying to scam you or overcharge you for waist beads. By supporting and purchasing from gracefulartdesings, you are potentially helping the African waist beads vendors that we purchase from. Your purchase allows us to create more business opportunities from them also. 


Also in News

Can My Baby Wear Waist Beads?
Can My Baby Wear Waist Beads?

December 14, 2021 0 Comments

Another reason is that my child lives in the Western world and her teachers and doctors may be concerned or surprised to see the waist beads and she would be too young to educate them. 

View full article →

Is Wearing Waist Beads Cultural Appropriation?
Is Wearing Waist Beads Cultural Appropriation?

February 18, 2021 0 Comments

Lastly, as long as your intention is to support the artisans, sellers, and African makers of waist beads, you are not doing anything wrong. No matter your size or race/color, if your intention is to use waist beads and appreciate them, Go Ahead! Have Fun!

View full article →

Pink background with phrase, what are waist beads?
What are Waist beads?

January 24, 2021 0 Comments

Waist beads represent femininity, many women wear them for their beauty and their sensuality, they can also be used to shape the female body or manage weight. 

View full article →

Stay Connected!

Be the first to know about new product arrivals and sales.