In the local beauty market, a new breed of daring beauty brands are shaking up the industry and challenging the entrenched, more recognized international brands with their unique method of product and branding. Beauty markets are being changed, new narratives are being told, telling of a new story owned by the needs and wants of today’s beauty customers. South Africa a culturally diverse nation that resists the conventional standardized display of beauty, is undergoing its own conversion of sorts, driven mainly by factors that include new participants of local beauty brands, a vocal millennial generation, the increasing influence of beauty bloggers and the effects of digital technology and connectivity.
Triggering some of the biggest changes in the beauty landscape in South Africa is Mbali Sebapu, the founder and Chief Executive Officer of the disruptive and trailblazing Hermosa Flor Cosmetics beauty brand. Prior to starting her entrepreneurial journey, she was a full time employee at the South African National Defence Force (SANDF) for 10 years and other job was being a social media influencer who truly loved the ins and outs of the beauty industry and more specifically make-up. Her notable following and the rise of social media made her entry into the beauty markets easier and assisted her in starting her journey of building her beauty brand two years before she left the SANDF.
“Two years before quitting my job, I started saving some of the money I was making as a social media influencer. I used that, along with my pension fund, to build relationships with reputable international manufacturers. I travelled to those manufacturers to view their factories and manufacturing processes, and compare the different suppliers. I also contacted Ndamee Group to help me establish a web presence and online store. Then, I did all the marketing with the experience I had gained influencing for different brands. We planned a great campaign leading up to our launch, and the rest, as they say, is history” said Mbali.
In terms of diversity and representation, Hermosa Flor Cosmetics is an African brand for women and members of the LGBTQIA+ community in a celebration of the diverse beauty of the continent. The redesigning and revolution of South Africa’s beauty narrative has diversity and inclusivity at its core. The starting point for any entrepreneur is to realise that the journey and the change are not just about you but about those you influence.
“The vision and the dream aren’t just for you. The desire to win might be for yourself, but the result of winning… the manifestation of your business, your talent, your skills being put to use, will impact a much wider audience than the audience of one. It is for this reason that you need to feel the fear and DO IT ANYWAY” she said.
Mbali Sebapu is consistently launching new products and adding a diverse selection to her beauty range. This is a brand that continuously interacts with its audience in order to evolve and that’s what makes Hermosa Flor Cosmetics different. It’s a beauty brand that is innovative in creating trends, that speak to women, and not at women.