@Refinery29 Explains Why Nigeria is the Next Beauty Destination, Fashionistas Listen Up!

Bimpe, a source for emerging fashion trends curated by fashion industry experts, explains why Nigeria is the best beauty destination.

It is a discussion we have had here, for many years, including in a feature with Ladybrille Woman Alum Supermodel IMAN, on the need to be responsive with beauty products for the Nigerian women. Over the past few years, we have seen an influx of Western beauty brands including M.U.D Cosmetics now in Nigeria. This article does a good job of discussing this future upward trend and anticipated influx of more Western beauty brands in Nigeria. By the way, one of the leading beauty brands in Nigeria right now is House of Tara owned by a Nigerian, Tara Fela-Durotoye

-Uduak Oduok

“It was only the beginning of New York Fashion Week, and Bimpe Onakoya was a long way from home. She was about to embark on a journey consisting of days of backstage appointments: painting models’ faces for shows like Jonathan Simkhai, Cushnie et Ochs, Lacoste, and Opening Ceremony. She would be on a team of many talented hopefuls working under the now-legendary Yadim, Maybelline’s global makeup artist.

Back home in Nigeria, Bimpe is a household name — among the fashion followers, anyway. This became obvious when Maybelline began documenting her every move on its Nigerian Instagram account: Comments like “#PatMcGrath us,” “Am so proud of being a Nigerian with you,” and “You go, ma’am!” showed a heartwarming sense of national pride and a support that’s rarely (if ever) seen for U.S. or European artists in their home countries. Bimpe’s arrival in New York spurred the magical thought: If she can make it here, she can make it anywhere.

In countless boardrooms, many a beauty executive has echoed this sentiment over the past few years. Only, it wasn’t about the Empire State. “To be totally honest with you, if we did not find success in Nigeria, this would be a different conversation,” says Karen Buglisi Weiler, the brand president for MAC Cosmetics. “Our success there was the catalyst for our continued expansion in Africa.”

The country is something of a final frontier for beauty companies. “Everyone has started to realize Nigeria’s potential,” says Sekou Coulibaly, Nigeria general manager for L’Oréal. “It’s very rare to find countries that show a strong growth potential, especially in this market. More mature countries are harder to break into. But, Nigeria is the biggest country in West Africa, it’s the most populous of the whole continent, and it has the highest GDP, which is still growing,” he says. “That potential is huge.”

Many of the big beauty brands started expanding into the Nigerian market just a few years ago, at a particularly crucial time in the country’s development. The early aughts marked years of controversy and social unrest, but the government has significantly stabilized since 2007, thanks to a newfound trust in the general-election system. Earlier this year, Nigeria even earned a seat on the U.N. Security Council. . .”

Refinery29 has the full story.

Photo description: Bimpe Onakoya, current beauty model for MAC Cosmetics.

Ladybrille Magazine

Founded in 2007, Ladybrille® Magazine is a California based pioneer digital publication demystifying the image of Africans in the west through contemporary African fashion and celebrating the brilliant woman in business and leadership, with an emphasis on the African woman in the diaspora. Our coverage includes stories on capital, access to markets, expertise, hiring and retention, sales, marketing, and promotions.

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