By: Mariki Mohale
Cosmetics companies are increasing as the demand for makeup is rising higher. Although they provide a vast range of makeup colours, not many are able to cater for women of colour; they may just have shades closer to their complexion only. Meet a woman who took it far by producing makeup fit for women of colour.
The Mafeteng born Nthabi Mokitimi-Dlamini is the founder and managing director at Byu-t̮i by Popz – a company that specializes in manufacturing makeup. Her profession includes integrated marketing and corporate communications where she obtained extensive experience in research, strategy and policy development, content development, brand management and advertising, media management, government, parliamentary and stakeholder relations, as well as campaign management. Apart from that, Dlamini graduated from the University of Pretoria with a BCom: Hons in Communication Management and BCom: Marketing Management. Currently, she is in the last stages of completing an MCom: Marketing Management degree.
Dlamini says that she attended several beauty classes that led to 2 diplomas because of diving force she had towards beauty.
“Led by an innate love and passion for the beauty industry, I ventured into the unchartered territory of makeup brushes and nail art. I attended various beauty classes, culminating in obtaining a Beauty Therapy Certificate and a Diploma in Makeup Artistry,” describes Dlamini.
Dlamini realized that there is a gap in the market for black women to participate in the manufacturing value chain of colour cosmetics. She indicates that at Byu-t̮i by Popz, they understand African skin better and they are best placed to produce makeup products that are made with the African woman in mind.
When it comes to challenges, Dlamini indicated that the biggest challenge was the high cost of entry which is a deterrent for many small businesses. As well, some of the raw materials required were quite expensive to source.
Dlamini encouraged women who want to pursue this kind of business to first understand the product, its features and properties. Also, it is very important to understand what problem you are solving and the different elements that go into the process of solving it.
“Believe in yourself; believe in your dreams, do not measure yourself against the successes of others and most importantly know and stay in your lane. There is and can only be one of you,” concludes Dlamini.