How To Start A Lucrative Makeup Business In Nigeria: The Complete Guide

How To Start Makeup Business In Nigeria Or Africa: The Complete Guide
How To Start A Lucrative Makeup Business In Nigeria Or Africa: The Complete Guide | Image: Dreamstime

Beauty is an essential factor in all human facets of life. It plays a major role in personal and interpersonal relationships, career, entertainment and other sectors. Although beauty is a personal signature, it has grown into a large industry that does not only play a significant role in other industries but also amasses lots of revenue as a result.

The beauty and makeup industry has experienced rapid growth globally. As of 2018, the industry was worth over $507 billion, with an expected growth to about $758.4 billion by 2025. The entertainment and film industry relies heavily on makeup to help performers fit into designated roles, settings, or time era. Makeup has become a part of the lifestyle of every individual, including video bloggers, influencers, models, and even office workers. Various surveys show that three out of every five women use makeup before leaving their houses. As of 2019, France, Singapore, the United States, South Korea and Japan were the major exporters of makeup and cosmetics industries, with a joint total of about 52% of global value.

Nigeria has an estimated population of 180 million people daily looking for ways to make themselves more glamorous for professional, personal and special events such as birthdays, photo sessions, weddings, etc. Makeup has become a compulsory fashion requirement for most women. The Nigerian makeup market generates about $3.4 billion annually. Although the market is largely saturated, there is still enough room for interested individuals who would like to delve into the makeup business on a large-scale. If that is you, you will find a detailed guide on how to start a lucrative makeup business in Nigeria and other parts of Africa in this article.

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What Is Makeup?

Makeup refers to the process of applying different cosmetic products, such as lipstick, eye shadow, foundation, eyeliner, mascara, concealer, and powder to the face or around the body to enhance or alter one’s appearance.

What Is A Makeup Business?

A makeup business refers to the process of setting up a makeup service institution or brand. It involves rendering makeup services to clients, selling makeup accessories, training apprentices, and so on.

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Business Opportunities Associated With The Makeup Business In Nigeria And Across The World

1). Makeup Services:

For small-scale makeup artists, rendering makeup services to individuals such as office workers, celebrities and others could make a very lucrative source of living. This also includes adding consultancy services such as making recommendations on what products are best for each client.

2). Sales And Distribution Of Makeup Products:

Makeup artists and makeup business brands are in the best position to retail makeup and skin care products. This involves selling and distributing to other makeup artists as well as end-consumers of the products. They do not only recommend makeup products but also retail them to their clients.

3). Makeup Training:

Another equally lucrative aspect of the makeup industry is the training of apprentices on how to render professional makeup services. Prolific makeup artists and makeup business brands organize special training sessions for interested persons to learn the skill.

4). Face And Body Painting:

This type of makeup services involves the use of cosmetics, paints and other special effects to create fantastical, magical, and sometimes horror looks on the human body.

5). Personal Makeup Services:

Most musicians, influencers, models, movie producers, actors, photographers, etc. hire makeup artists that work with them round the clock. These types of artists follow their clients around.


Facts And Benefits Of Makeup Business

  • Red lipstick signified class in the medieval ages.
  • Beauty brands spend 25% of their sales income on promotion and advertising and only 3% on research and development.
  • Makeup can help protect the skin
  • Makeup makes photos sharper
  • Lipstick was initially made from crushed precious jewels and dust.
  • In the Roman era, men painted their lips to indicate their social class and wealth status.
  • Applying makeup can serve as a reminder to cleanse and take care of your skin.
  • Americans spend more on makeup than education yearly.
  • Makeup makes you appear younger
  • In 1991, women politicians used makeup to boost their election polls.
  • An average woman uses a dozen cosmetic products that contain over 160 chemicals, while men use less than seven products that contain only 85 chemical components.
  • In 3000 BC, nail polish was discovered in China by mixing egg whites, beeswax, gum, and coloured powder.
  • Makeup is a confidence booster.
  • Makeup is a symbol of self-love.
  • The US has the highest cosmetic surgery rate in the world.
  • Makeup is therapeutic
  • Ground-up beetles served as a dye to colour nails and lips red in ancient Aztec civilization.
  • France, Singapore, the United States, South Korea and Japan are some of the biggest exporters of makeup products across the globe.

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How To Start A Lucrative Makeup Business In Nigeria: A Step-By-Step Guide

1). Get The Required Skills:

If you’re starting out as a novice, the starting point is to equip yourself with all the basic knowhow of applying makeup professionally. For expert makeup artists who intend to launch into the business, it is important to undergo continuous training to keep yourself abreast with the trends and new skills in the sector.

2). Determine Your Business Scope:

After acquiring the needed skills and knowledge, determine your scope of operation. Decide whether you would love to work as a personal makeup artist, with just one major client such as a celebrity or a modeling agency, or photo studio, or you would like to set up your physical makeup institution and work on contracts, etc.

3). Create A Business Name:

A unique business name to suit your type of makeup services will go far in establishing your business brand. Most makeup artists use the tag MUA to state expressly what the brand is about. You could use this style or choose a more creative name tag for your makeup business. It just has to reveal upon first sight that the business is a makeup brand.

4). Purchase The Needed Tools:

A makeup business requires diverse makeup tools. The kit depends largely on the specific kinds of services rendered, and they differ in prices. However, here are some of the most basic makeup tools needed: foundation brush, beauty blender, large powder brush, eyeshadow brush, eyeshadow pencil, lip brush, eyelash curler, etc.

5). Advertise Your Business:

Grab every opportunity to show your art. Advertising your business as a makeup artist can be a bit of a stretch. Take advantage of every presented opportunity to practice and showcase your work. You should have some digital presence and an online gallery where you can showcase your previous works and engage your potential clients.

6). Network With Other Professionals In the Industry:

Your network is your net worth! Build a strong network with other artists in your line of work. Associating with other makeup artists keeps you on your creative toes, lets you in on new trends, and builds your clientele.

7). Always Be Open And Available:

Success comes to the available artist at each point in time. Make yourself available to learn new trends, ideas, and styles – gele tying, face or body painting, etc. A successful makeup artist is always ready to deliver whatever the demands of the client are with passion and excellence.

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Challenges Of Starting A Makeup Business In Nigeria

  • Safety concerns, especially when the makeup artist has to meet the client at their residence.
  • Original products are hard to find.
  • Lack of funding to acquire professional training or tools for work.
  • Difficulty in keeping up with trends.
  • Most people are unwilling to spend so much money on makeup.
  • Carving out a niche as a makeup artist is a tedious and burdensome task.
  • High market competition.
  • Difficulty in getting new clients.

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To Sum It Up

Makeup is a part of everyday life. Becoming a successful makeup artist is all about how well you adapt to new trends. Fortunately, business opportunities in the makeup industry are endless. Choose a path that you are passionate about and exceptional at and show creativity in all you do. The makeup business in Nigeria can be a lucrative and profitable venture to start-up, due to its vast market demand and on your ability to build a wide network. If you’re looking for a lucrative business to venture into, the makeup business in Nigeria is a great option to explore.


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What are your thoughts on how to start a makeup business in Nigeria? Let me know by leaving a comment below.

Stan Edom
Stan Edom
I'm an entrepreneur with expertise in supply chain management, international trade, small business development, e-commerce, internet startups, renewable energy, and agriculture. I'm also a network engineer, I.T security expert, and computer programmer. In my spare time when I'm not working out at the gym, I try to solve problems people face in their everyday lives with whatever means necessary.

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