6 Fast Rising Makeup Artists In Nigeria
Words By – Yemisi Suleiman
The evolution of the makeup industry has seen the continued surge of young millennials including, University graduates taking to makeup artistry as a profession. And with the advent of social media, particularly Instagram, we get to see these young professionals’ creativity and passion in beautifying others.
There are, however, a few, who, over the years, have proven to be a force to reckon with, and are steadily but surely, taking over from pioneers like Tara Fela-Durotoye, Banke Meshida, and other pros who have dominated the scene a long time.
We profile six of these young makeup artists in Nigeria, who are steadily making their way to the top-notch list in the industry, selected for their creativity and achievements.
Zainab Azeez…Jack Of Many Make Up Feats
Zainab Azeez is a Beauty Entrepreneur, who has been a Makeup artist professionally for 11years. Her early works have spanned from Tv productions to Brides on the biggest day of their lives. On her clientele lists are notable brands such as Dettol, Unilever, Netflix, MNet, Africa Magic and MTV Base. Top tier reality Tv shows like XFactor, Nigeria’s Got Talent, Naija Sings are also on her list
If you’re in search of the dreamiest, most wearable makeup looks on Instagram, look no further than Zainab’s page. This in-demand pro’s utmost fulfillment is in getting and making brides look the most beautiful on their wedding day, a feat that has earned her a place in the hearts of her large social media followers and clients.
Seyi Chukwu..Expressing Creativity With Make Up
Seyi Chukwu, with the brand Bregha, has over five years experience working in the bridal, entertainment, and cosmetic industry. The professional makeup artist, who studied Architecture at the University of Lagos, is the go-to makeup artist for music star Yemi Alade. She also works frequently with other celebrities in the movie industry including star actress, Shaffy Bello and Jemima Osunde amongst others.
One look at her Instagram page reveals her love for neutrals, with an occasional flash of colour with which she creates enviable complexions on a variety of skin tones. Her style endears her to many, who she educates and inspires via her makeup masterclasses on her Instagram page. Bregha, as she is fondly called, strongly believes makeup is a culture and a fun expression of our individual creativity.
Lillian Omozele Paul…Solving Clients Make Needs
Lillian Paul is the Founder of The Beauty Precinct; an organization committed to providing exceptional makeover products and services for fashion editorials, bridal, TV/film production, and makeup artistry training. She is one of the leading make-up artists in the country, whose work earned her an award as the Best Makeup Artist at the Africa Magic Viewers Choice Awards 2020, AMVCA. She boasts a packed portfolio of fashion editorials and TV features such as America’s Black Bride magazine, Genevieve magazine, Thisday Style Magazine, CNN (inside Africa), and more. Alongside a broad range of clientele base, Lillian has also worked with a few international brands like Reckitt Benckiser company (Veet), Chi limited (Hollandia Yoghurt), and Nivea amongst others. Her greatest strength lies in her ability to listen and decipher clients’ personal makeup needs, and infusing that into what complements them, and generally striking a balance for that perfect look.
Onyebuchi Sez-Elabor…The Trainer Of Trainers
Head makeup artist for Debrene Beauty Nigeria, Onyebuchi Sez-Elabor simply known as Buchi is definitely a force to reckon with in the beauty industry. A-lists actresses Monalisa Chinda, Chika Ike, Ebube Nwagbo amongst others look to Buchi for their flawless red carpet beauty looks. And the makeup artist has earned her spot on the A-list too, working her butt off in the business for 10 years, to score coveted jobs for celebrity brides, fashion shows, Tv productions for Nollywood, and the Music Industry.
The innovative makeup artist is also famous for DJ Cuppy and Maybelline Newyork is a graduate of the University of Ibadan with a degree in Human Nutrition. She has trained over 800 aspiring makeup artists and is still counting.
Agbonkhese Omotolani …On Skin-Focused Make Up
Agbonkhese Omotolani, the CEO of Tolabanks Beauty is a beauty entrepreneur and professional makeup artist, who started her career in the corporate world but has risen to fame with her fresh and natural approach to makeup. The graduate of the University of Lagos, began her career professionally as a makeup artist in 2015, and has since carved a niche for herself with her trademark skin-focused looks. In 2021, she officially started her own beauty business, Tolabanks Beauty.
As the creative director and lead artist, she has an impressive portfolio of work and one of her most notable bridal gigs was the Presidential wedding of Yusuf Muhammadu Buhari, the son of Nigeria’s President Mohammadu Buhari and Princess Zahra Nasir Ado Bayero.
She was also the makeup artist for the wedding of Princess Zainab Nasir Ado Bayero, the daughter of Alhaji Nasir Ado Bayero, Emir of the Bichi Emirate, Kano State, and Chairman of Enclo Limited and 9 Mobile Nigeria. With a number of other top female personalities on her clientele list, Tola’s greatest strength as a makeup artist is the ability to make muses look very elegant in an exquisite but subtly-stated manner.
Ebitonmo Sandra Tearelayefa …Bride’s Go-To Girl
Lagos-based makeup artist and YouTuber, Ebitonmo Sandra Tearelayefa, simply known as Layefa, has been in the industry for six years and steadily gaining her place as one of the favourites for brides. She is famous for being her own muse and trying out different products at different times. Layefa also shares her knowledge with her numerous followers, hosting makeup masterclasses on social media, and around major cities in Nigeria in collaboration with other brands. Layefa who has quite a number of following and engagements on social media says, it has not always been rosy but with persistence, determination, and hard work, she has been able to grow to this point. “I will say it’s the grace of God as this is a very saturated industry.” Over the years, Layefa has continued to hone her skills, and has created a signature style that is recognised by her numerous clients.