Beauty is big business, but Christina Tegbe (B ’07) of Houston knew that natural ingredients often work as well as high-tech ones.
The founder of 54 Thrones African Beauty created a company that draws on African botanicals such as shea butter, lavender and argan oil.
Having grown up in Nigerian-American culture, Tegbe was already familiar with the products that women there used for skin care. On trips to Africa, she felt drawn to the women who were creating those types of products. But when she started out as a beauty entrepreneur in 2016, she nonetheless felt she had “no clue” how to go about it.
The process would reveal itself, though. When she visited Nigeria, armed with empty suitcases for the products, “People were so willing to help me,” she said. “If I asked, ‘Where can I find shea butter?,’ they were like, ‘Come with me!’ That is the communal aspect of African cultures in general.”