Meet World Acclaimed Make-Up Artist – Bimpe Onakoya


makeup artist at jumia blog

  1. Please introduce yourself? 

My name is Bimpe Onakoya and I am the Makeup Artist Director of Maybelline New-York in Nigeria.

  1. How long have you been a Makeup artist and can you tell us a little about it

I have been a Make-up Artist for 11 years, although it started long before that, as an undergraduate at both OAU Ife and Unilag , i discovered i had a flair for makeup.

I was always making my friends up , shaping their brows even  cutting and styling their hair, Though I picked that one from keenly observing hairstylists working on my Anita Baker hair for years!

And their reactions whenever I was done making them up was priceless!  So I became the go to girl for makeup whenever there was  an event, and in the process I also met Bayo Hastrup who graduated two years ahead of me from the same

Department, but he was already a known Makeup Artist, so while Awaiting NYSC, he invited me to join his team and gave me a day training and the following day; we were put to work for a major event called

St. Morris Styles selection, where I did my first professional work, That was the day I met my destiny,  I fell outrightly in love with the vibes and energy of back stage and couldn’t get enough, even now years later I still can’t get enough.     

What will you say is your most exciting project?

It is very difficult to mention a particular project , each project tells a story of my journey to where i am today and where I’m still going, every project comes with a new feeling. was it when I was made the Head of Make-up at Arise Fashion Week? or when I was made the

Head of Lagos Fashion and Design Week ? which I have been since its inception. Or when i worked at New-York Fashion week along with some amazing  Maybelline New york makeup Artists from all around the world?  Or when i was made the Artistic Director of Maybelline New-York in Nigeria?

of which I am the first Nigerian to attain this role, Or when i did make-up for the famous South Sudanese British supermodel Alec Wek ?whom I have always admired and loved from afar, Or Jordan Dunn? even my first editorial cover for True Love West Africa long ago ? They are all interesting moments in my life

. I have had so many interesting jobs and met so many beautiful people , therefore I cannot say in particular which project I love the most, every experience is unique and exciting for me.

  1. Hearing you talk, we see a lot of passion and seeing that there are thousands of young ladies aspiring to be like you and also have a flare for this skill, what message do you have for them and how do you think they can re-direct the energy?

So I always tell people to keenly follow their passions, it always pays to follow it because you only live once. Nothing feels better than getting paid for what you love doing, While some people like to play safe even though they hate their jobs yet they cannot quit. Its ok, but for people who

dares to ….. Its always worthwhile, yes it may be rough in the beginning, but the end always justifies the means. It can be difficult especially when you have responsibilities; and don’t get me wrong, it was very difficult for me as a make-up artist  for a long time, I had fame to my name

but no dime to it.  I always advise upcoming make-up artists to always pursue excellence and ignore success, don’t let success be the first thing on your mind. Perfect your craft, perfect your artistry and people will find you and always recommend you even when you do not have money

to advertise yourself. On the other hand, if you don’t hone your skills, it is only a matter of time, you will fizzle out.

  1. What is your favourite style to re-create?

OMG! I’ve always loved the 1950s…it is timeless, and always reminds me of classic beauties , nothing can beat that look! It is arguably the most beautiful look of all time and when you see the likes of Marylin Monroe, Audrey Hepburn, Grace Kelly, Ava Gardner , Natalie wood, Liz Taylor…

elegantly and timelessly beautiful from that era ,  I do that look for most people for events, for weddings, notably I did the look for the famous Tiwa Savage on her engagement ceremony.

bimpe onakoya makeup at jumia lounge                          bimpe onakoya on jumia blog                       makeup artist

  1. What new products will you recommend from the L’oreal range for the Nigerian woman?

Aha! You see our Maybelline Dream Matte Mousse is one to definitely look out for. It’s a best seller all over the world. It’s a revolution in foundation, a revolutionary whipped formula, providing an air-soft, perfect matte finish coverage, with a weightless feel.

A breakthrough in technology with flexible, silicone polymers to help prevent caking, And the colour pigments give superior coverage that blend effortlessly to impart a soft, natural-looking, even-toned result,,our Maybelline products were made specially for the African woman,

carefully adapted to suit the black skin.  Also our Maybelline New York Eye brow satin  is a first-of-its-kind gel pen then fill the gaps with cream powder that blends seamlessly for a fuller natural looking brows.

When you hear Maybelline? Think technology.

  1. What Trends have you seen in the Nigerian market? What are your best sellers?

Our colossal Kajal , Clearsmooth powder, colossal Mascara and baby lip are all best sellers, we are constantly re stocking on these products, the rate at which they fly off the shelves is amazing! Do you know that Maybelline produced the first Mascara in the world ? so when you Google ‘Mascara’, first image you will see are Maybelline

Mascaras, and for the trends ? Its all about cacaoing! have you been cacaoed? Cacaoing is the new conturing, when you use our clearsmooth cacao to contour a face, you will never use use any other product for conturing ever again! this one blends like no other, very magical and I assure you will be blown away!

  1. What beauty tips would you give to the African women?

This is pretty simple. Drink a lot of water. It is the cheapest and the most available therapy and the interesting part is that it costs nothing. When you take a lot of water, you keep your skin hydrated. Truth is, you can only hide your skin for a while, no matter the amount of make-up you put on your face, it does not cover the defects.

So drink as much water as you can, it will keep you looking younger and flush out toxin from your body and ultimately you will look and feel good. And your skin will thank you for it .

  1. What are the plans of Maybelline New York for the Nigerian women in 2015?

Maybelline New York didn’t just come to Nigeria to sell products like any other brands , We have come to empower the Nigerian woman which is our core value. Throughout last year, we went around the country giving series of masterclasses to makeup artist and make-up enthusiasts, empowering them with entrepreneurial skills ,

L’Oreal  Central West Africa  also organized an event for people with special needs and we do this from time to time and we had over 10 events last year and suffice to say we are on track. Maybelline has shown commitment and show that they have come to stay with so many things lined up this year.

This article was edited by Aisha Aburime