‘Women should feel beautiful in their skin tone’
Dr. May Ikeora Campaigns For My Colour, My Heritage In Lagos
DR. May Ikeora is an academic researcher on human rights and peace building. She is also an entrepreneur who owns a skin care brand known as L’Avyanna Skin Naturals. She was trained to be a tutor in skin care formulation at Formula Botanica and did other courses pertaining to beauty in the UK. Recently, she unveiled her My Colour, My Heritage campaign and skin care product in Lagos.
Talking about her product, she said the idea was conceived a long time ago. “L’Avynna started in the United Kingdom where I have been living for 10 years. I’ve always been interested in beauty and, on my own, I learnt how to use things that I make but I tend to realise that very simple ingredients or nutrients is what my body needs. I made research, got things together and it worked for my skin. I talked to some friends and they advised me to start a skin care brand since I have passion for what I am doing.
“The main reason I took it up as a business was because I embarked on this project called Raising Girls, aimed at empowering young girls. After that I thought to myself to use the platform to push my product and make young girls proud in their skin and that brought about My Colour, My Heritage, which is a beauty campaign aimed at encouraging black young girls to feel beautiful in their skin tone.
“I think we should accept our skin for what it is. Black skin tone did not necessarily mean charcoal but it could be chocolate and all other shades. I lived in a country where there is discrimination because you are black and sometimes people don’t get jobs as a result of their skin colour. I feel bad when I come to Nigeria and see people trying to bleach or change their skin colour.
According to the former beauty queen: “People go on instagram and show their before and after pictures where they were formerly black and now white, thinking that it is normal. Beauty says a lot about people. We are black and should be proud of it. The truth is, on the long run, these skin whitening products might damage the skin. The main thing is to accept our identity instead of going the extra mile to turn it into what it is not. We are trying to change that perception.”
“I look around in Nigeria and found out that 90 per cent of the creams in the market are skin whitening creams. I know that there are a whole lot of people who want to apply something natural on the skin. Apart from my passion, I realize there was a gap in that market. I don’t feel threatened whatsoever about the already saturated market because competition is in every line of business. At the end of the day, in everything you do, you set yourself apart. I definitely believe that I will be successful. My vision is to own a manufacturing company in Nigeria and export to the world, Ikeora says.
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