One of the things I am always striving to do with our amazing www.lovenwords.com features is to showcase love that is full: from a woman who loves herself on physical, emotional, and spiritual levels, to abiding, committed love & partnership in marriage. I want to show a woman that loves herself inside, as well as outside. So, I am going to be featuring beauty brands (skin care & makeup) that are owned by women of African heritage or descent.
So, if you have such a brand, or know someone who owns one, feel free to send me an e-mail at chioma[dot]onyewuchi[at]hotmail[dot]com.
Editor’s Note: Feature interviews are often edited and/or condensed in some way.
The first beauty brand feature is Pure Òkwùma by Kaylyn Danielle. Find out all about it.
Name: Kaylyn Danielle
Brand Name: Pure Òkwùma
Open Since: 2015
What inspired you to launch your business? Why skincare?
Friends and family advising me to do what I’m good at, do what is easy for me and do what I love. It sounds too simple, but it actually led me to starting a business that I enjoy doing every day.
Starting a business in natural skincare just made sense to me. I certainly had experience from making my own natural hair and skin products and dabbling in herbalism. When my friends would come over to my house, they would be so excited to see how I rigged up my apartment for my newest concoction.
Why did you choose the name, Pure Òkwùma?
To say the least, choosing a name for any company can be one of the hardest tasks an entrepreneur has to tackle. I thought about choosing something that reflected our core values and foundation. Something that would keep us focused on doing things right and doing things better. Pure Òkwùma was the clear choice.
A late night at my computer, looking at shea trees, sparked the idea to look at local names for “shea” where the shea tree is predominant.
The name, “Òkwùma”, is another name for “shea” from the Igbo language in West Africa. It is amazing how many products are based on all-natural foundations, but are so chemically modified and reproduced that the essential ingredients are lost.
All of our products are made with cocoa and shea butter, two of the most versatile natural beauty ingredients on the planet, that nourish your body, as well as local communities in West Africa where our ingredients are sourced.
This is the beginning of a long journey but, by naming ourselves after our purest intentions, we will constantly be reminded to do better.
Why did you choose shea and cocoa butters as the foundation of all your products?
Shea and cocoa are two of the most versatile over-looked natural beauty super foods on the planet. Their richness in precious constituents, like essential fatty acids, vitamin E and D, and allantoin make them the best choice for moisturizing, anti-aging, regenerating and protecting from UV sunlight. Shea and cocoa will always beat out any trendy skin care products for the cold and sunny seasons.
What sets Pure Okwuma apart from other natural skincare products?
I wanted to develop a range of products that bring together the very best in skincare ingredients that are designed to nourish, replenish and hydrate the skin. Pure Òkwùma is exactly what I wanted for myself.
Pure Òkwùma products are all vegan and don’t contain any parabens or harsh chemicals. We’ve added six different types of antioxidants that reign supreme in combating many signs of aging, including wrinkles, dullness, and discoloration, and botanical fragrances like basil, lime and bergamot. However, it doesn’t just stop there.
We believe that we have a responsibility to the earth and to each other. Many of our ingredients, like our shea butter are fairly traded and sourced from a women’s cooperative, that help to enrich the lives of others. We take all of these wonderful ingredients and combine them to create the products that you see on our site.
I am proud of the results our products are achieving and the difference they are making to people’s skin.
Have you always wanted to start your own business?
I think so. Starting my own business was something that my dad showed me was possible as a child. The fulfillment that I received from people that liked my body butters when I was just doing it for my own personal use, propelled me to create my own company. It’s been really exciting so far and I plan to introduce a lot more items soon.
What do you believe about yourself that makes you certain that you can succeed as an entrepreneur?
Starting a business is surprisingly simple–you just need to take the first step. It’s my willingness to go out there, my ability to embrace the confusion of starting a business and learning from my experiences and others, that makes me certain I can succeed as an entrepreneur.
How has the way you see yourself changed since you launched your business?
Starting Pure Òkwùma let me really embrace what it means to be comfortable, not only in my skin but in my willingness to be vulnerable. I’m constantly learning in both my business and personal life that embracing my authentic self isn’t the worst thing in the world. In fact, in many ways, having that push to just let go and go for it is what the human experience is all about.
What does success look like to you?
When it comes to success in business, it’s easy to focus on obvious measures like profitability, but I’m learning that the real indicator of success is how much you’re learning and becoming an expert in your field. To have someone consider me an expert would be worth so much more than money. Doing what you love as well as making a difference in other people’s lives is also another factor that I believe helps in your success.
Stay in touch with all things Pure Òkwùma. Follow the brand everywhere:
Instagram: Pure Okwuma