Hair, style and beauty may mean different things to many people, but for hair and beauty expert, Akinbode Aminat Opeyemi, founder of Rhiks Place Beauty, they are ‘three best friends’ that every woman should pay attention to. She speaks on these ‘friends’ in this interview with SEGUN ADEBAYO.
For somebody who has been in beauty business for a while, you must have your good and bad moments over the years. How did you manage to build your brand to this level?
My brand didn’t just grow to this level overnight. I had my low and rough times on the business but passion kept me going and I am happy that we have moved away from that phase to a more comfortable situation. With passion and dedication to one’s work, the challenges often become easy and one soon gets over the problems. Many times, I felt like quitting, but passion and encouragement from people got me going.
Should it really cost so much for a woman to look good?
It could cost so much to look good if you want quality, but sometimes how you carry yourself matters a lot. That is why I sell all ranges of hairs as I understand that everyone may not have the financial strength to get it. For me, beauty, style and hair are three friends that every woman should pay attention to.
You have entertainers as your brand ambassadors; you must be very rich to have secured their services for your brand. What did this cost you?
I am happy that they are part of the growth of the company. I’m doing fine and my brand is growing. Having celebrities endorse your brand does not come cheap or easy; it took me months to settle down with the celebrity that fits the bill for me.
What does it cost to sign a celebrity to your brand?
It cost me almost nothing because it is a plus to my brand. It helps the brand to grow.
How do you maintain your beauty regimen despite your busy schedule?
I have to focus on my business because I have a good brand manager who happens to be my husband. He keeps tabs on everything going on in my brand while I focus on other important aspect of the job. I pay attention to how I appear a lot because people are convinced by what they see not what they hear.
Recently, there was a sudden urge among women for the bone straight hair. As an expert in the hair business, why do you think people love the hair?
I think it was just the time. Also, don’t forget it happened during the pandemic and everybody was looking for something new that would make them happy and look different. It got that viral attention because it became a popular discussion on Social media platforms. The fact is that the hair has always been available but not everybody could afford it.
You have a rich number of clientele on your list, particularly celebrities. How did you convince them to join your brand?
Most of them come by referrals and others see what we can do to enhance their beauty. In every situation, you must project your business well and move with those who can use their platforms to help it grow. Celebrities are big on their Social media platforms and this is where people get to see and interact with their favorite celebrities.
What are the real challenges of running this kind of business, especially in Lagos?
The challenges in this business are quite much. It gets really hard now that everybody is interested in the same business. Everybody wants to sell what you sell but they don’t have the capacity to do it the way you will; so they go for the less products and portray it as the real deal. Beyond that, you have to give your brand the visibility it deserves and you have to be consistent as well.
With huge levy on importation, how do you cope with importing and exporting your products?
Since COVID-19 started, it hasn’t been easy, but I have been pulling through. It’s part of business and I’m used to it; we can’t stop selling because the shipping fee is high. Sending my products out of the country to clients has ever been easy because I have an account with a logistics company that handles my deliveries outside Nigeria. So it has always been a smooth process.
How did you get to know so much about hair and beauty regimen for women?
People find it hard to believe that I never visited anywhere for training. I rely mostly on lessons from Social media platforms; Instagram has been my best teacher, because I’m always surfing the internet to learn more and I’m still learning.
Can you tell us the popular hair from your brand that people love to use?
The popular hair from my brand that people love to buy and will forever continue to buy and use is ‘Soweto curls’. I have sold thousands of the hair and it’s still my best selling till date because I tend to come up with different styles with the hair and people keep buying.
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