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7 Nigerian Natural Hair Entrepreneurs To Watch

These Nigerian entrepreneurs have launched innovative hair extension companies and products geared towards empowering natural hair wearers.


Photo: Abby & Ivie Omoruyi (Courtesy of Abby Omoruyi)

Boasting an estimated $500 million-plus price tag, the Black haircare market is big business. Yet, Black entrepreneurs own only a small sliver of this lucrative pie. According to a New York Times article, Black-owned beauty stores constitute only a few hundred of the roughly 10,000 U.S. stores that sell hair products like relaxers, curl creams, wigs and hair weaves to black women. The tide seems to gradually be turning, though, thanks to the Internet and its democratizing capabilities. With a simple click, one can launch an own online retail shop and build a loyal customer base. We've rounded up a group of enterprising Nigerians whose passions for natural hair care and its devoted community are innovating the multibillion dollar industry one curl at a time.

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Music
Photo courtesy of AYLØ.

Interview: AYLØ Bridges His Music & Universe In the 'Clairsentience' EP

The Nigerian artist talks about trusting your gut feelings, remedying imposter syndrome and why our identity is best rooted in who we are, rather than what we do.

AYLØ's evolution as an artist has led him to view sensitivity as a gift. As the alté soundscape in the Nigerian scene gains significant traction, his laser focus cuts through the tempting smokescreen of commercial success. AYLØ doesn't make music out of need or habit. It all boils down to the power of feeling. "I know how I can inspire people when I make music, and how music inspires me. Now it's more about the message."

Clairsentience, the title of the Nigerian artist's latest EP, is simply defined as the ability to perceive things clearly. A clairsentient person perceives the world through their emotions. Contrary to popular belief, clairsentience isn't a paranormal sixth sense reserved for the chosen few, our inner child reveals that it's an innate faculty that lives within us before the world told us who to be.

Born in 1994 in Benin City, Nigeria, AYLØ knew he wanted to be a musician since he was six-years-old. Raised against the colorful backdrop of his dad's jazz records and the echoes of church choirs from his mother's vast gospel collections, making music isn't something anyone pushed him towards, it organically came to be. By revisiting his past to reconcile his promising future, he shares that, "Music is about your experiences. You have to live to write shit. Everything adds up to the music."

Our conversation emphasized the importance of trusting your gut feelings, how to remedy imposter syndrome and why our identity is best rooted in who we are, rather than what we do,

This interview has been edited for purposes of brevity and clarity.

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Bobi Wine and His Wife Released from House Arrest

Ugandan politician Bobi Wine and his wife Barbara Itungo Kyagulanyi have been released from a near two-week military house arrest following a recent ruling from a Ugandan court.