For a woman, her hair is as important to her as the food she eats to stay alive. Not only does it define her physical outlook, it also forms the foundation of her self-esteem. According to Nigerian hair entrepreneur, Nkem Ngbeken Tonweh, the Chief Executive Officer of Natty Cole Beauty Studio, based in Italy, a woman’s hair is her life.
She says, “Hair is life. Hair is everything in beauty. With a good hair we man move mountains. Hair is the soul of a woman. A good hair brings out of a lady that self confidence locked within. It gives us a different vibe. A different personality which we always forget we have.
But the question of the right hair to wear is often the most disconcerting exercise for women as there are many hair extensions in the market. But in the opinion of Nkem Ngbeken Tonweh , a hair care expert and merchant, who has been in the business for many years having a good quality hair is a good investment.
“Having a good quality hair saves you a lot of stress and money. Having a good hair is an investment. Having 2 good hair is better than having 10 less quality hair. A Good hair is like a complimentary card. It represents you,” she said.
“For the hair extension. First it is divided by race like the Indian hair/ Peruvian hair/Brazilian/Mongolian hair/Russian hair/European hair. This last two two listed are the most expensive because it is difficult to get. Getting that you decide the quality if its a virgin hair/ Rémy/ double drawn and so on. Then you decide the grade like 8a/7a and so,” she added.
Nkem Ngbeken Tonweh founded Natty Cole Beauty Studio in 2014 after she had tested the terrain with Afro Hair School by Mimi which she later sold, in faraway Bergamo, Italy.
She specializes in hair extensions, wigs, braids and dreadlocks. The Natty Cole Beauty Studio also engages in training where courses are offered to people who wish to learn about braids, hair extensions and dreadlocks.
According to her, she decided to venture into the hair business when she discovered through a profound research that there was no place in Italy where all about Afro hair extensions and braids could be learnt.
At one point she also ran a lingerie shop but her major attraction is hair extensions and braids and with much hardwork and resilience she has found a niche in a country faraway from home.
In 2016 and 2017 she was awarded the honour of the Most Innovative Black Woman in her region, the Lombardy region of Italy.
However,Nkem Ngbeken Tonweh’s biggest dream is to penetrate the Nigerian market.
Nkem Ngbeken Tonweh is from Delta State but born in Benin City, Edo State. She attended Lydia Primary School and Presentation National High School ( all girls Catholic boarding school) in Benin. She relocated to Rome, Italy immediately after her secondary school.