How Western Makeup Trends Have Shaped the Nigerian Makeup Industry


Over the years, the Nigerian Makeup Industry has grown very lucrative and the demand for makeup products and services continue to rise significantly. From popular indigenous makeup product brands like Zaron and House of Tara to International brand names like Avon and L’Oreal, a visit to a cosmetic store in Nigeria reveals that there is no shortage of makeup brand options to choose from. There has also been a high surge of increase in the number of makeup schools all over the country owing to the growing demand for makeup services among women and the high rate of unemployment in the country. Young women (and in some cases men too) have resorted to studying the art of makeup and the number of young people applying to makeup schools thereby increasing significantly.

While this development in our makeup industry has undoubtedly contributed to improving the lives of many Nigerians through providing employment, there is no denying the disappointment in the fact that our Nigerian makeup industry has also allowed western concept of physical perfection to influence our cultural standards of beauty. By gradually succumbing to global influence, our makeup industry has contributed in encouraging Nigerians to shun natural looks and go in pursuit of physical appearances that adhere to the western concept of beauty.

Majority of women are now more in tune western ideals of physical outlook and our perception of basic facial attractiveness appear to have gradually changed over-time in favour of a lighter skin, pointier nose bridge, longer lashes, more sculptured face with higher cheek bones and lighter shaded lips, as opposed to our natural looks characterized by darker skin tones and more rounded facial features. As the global standard of beauty has dipped its claws in the Nigerian makeup industry, trying to look less Nigerian is now the order of the day, and Nigerian women now seek to use cosmetics as a method of alteration to achieve the now-in-trend standard of beauty.

Nigerian makeup companies are working tirelessly to meet up with this demand; manufacturing cosmetic and beauty products to help achieve the much-desired western beauty look; while our Nigerian makeup schools teach our makeup artists the art of using an array of products such as concealers, foundations, face-powders, highlighting kits, lip sticks, contouring kits, artificial lashes, mascaras, etc. to produce the illusion of a slimmer, pointier and more sculptured face and nose ridge that meets the western model of physical beauty.

Sources: The Alan Review, Independent, Observe Nigeria

By: Akaomachi B.


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