Entrepreneur Who loves all Things Beauty and Cosmetics

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Shola Ade-Okafor, founder of BlushinGirl Tools.

I’m a passionate beauty entrepreneur, who loves all things beauty and cosmetics. I manage a cosmetic company, BlushinGirl Tools. I’m a wife, sister, friend and mother. I love connecting with people and exchanging ideas. In my spare time, I listen to a wide genre of music. I also love gardening

I started out as a makeup artist in 2006, while still pursuing my undergraduate degree. I’ve always been a very active person. I always find ways to keep myself busy during my spare time so, I enrolled for professional makeup training during one of the semester’s holidays. After that, I set up my makeup business offering mostly bridal makeup services.

BlushinGirl Tools is a Cosmetic company that offers high quality colour cosmetics designed specifically for African skin tones. We pay particular attention to the pigmentation and ingredient composition of our products to suit the African skin tone, and the humid weather on most parts of the African continent. The company aims to inspire ladies to embrace their beauty, versatility and love themselves as they are.

Inspiration

The “company” has been around since 2006. However, BlushinGirl Tools, the product line was born in 2015. I was inspired to launch the product line because of a gap I noticed in the cosmetic market in Nairobi at the time. I had a couple of students taking a professional makeup artist course my business was offering. However, I couldn’t find a very essential product to complete their makeup kit after searching for several months in the market. Initially, I tried to source internationally, but it came with a few challenges and high cost. It was a good time to launch the product line I had been putting off for a quite a while.

I would say the product launch is a highlight in my career. It started small and every day, I see growth and receive amazing feedback from customers, most of them are repeat customers which is a very positive thing. I’m so glad and grateful for the support.

Telling the African story

BlushinGirl Tools is a cosmetic company that tells the African story. Firstly, our products are designed specifically to compliment African skin tones. The ingredient composition is tailored to give our customers best user experience in the humid weather in most African countries. Secondly, our customers feel a sense of connection to our products because of their names for example Safarigirl, Lenana, Jtown fever, Zindzi among others. I recall a customer telling me that she bought our Lenana lipstick just because she used to live on Lenana road in Nairobi! She was excited to see a product named so close to home!

I get the most satisfaction when our products satisfy customers’ need. When we receive feedback from customers, we are able to determine what they like about the product and what concerns they have, so we can improve on the products. It’s a satisfying feeling knowing that people are interested in the brand.

Nonetheless, nothing comes easy in this world and in business, challenges are inevitable. However they make you think of alternative ways to get the job done. Challenges have a way of making you want to give up, it can be hard sometimes but I try to stay positive. I take a break and take time to think and pray and most times, I’m able to think of alternative ways to handle the situation.

Future aspirations

Our future plans are to expand BlushinGirl Tools across the African continent, as well as the product line to offer more to our customers. Our goal is to have BlushinGirl Tools products on the shelves of major beauty retailers in all African countries in the next few years.

Piece of advice for aspiring entrepreneurs

Believe in your dreams! We all have unique gifts and talents, nobody on earth can execute your dream like you will. If you have that nudge to start a business, I will say by all means go for it with all the drive and passion you can muster.

I’ll leave you with a quote by Mary Kay, founder, Mary Kay Cosmetics. She is a business icon that inspires me.

“Don’t limit yourself. Many people limit themselves to what they think they can do. You can go as far as your mind lets you. What you believe, remember, you can achieve.”