Bringing Back Hair Flair with Nu Elefa Naturals
“My flat mate was so shocked at the results she wanted to try my hair serum so she paid me for it. From there I was given so many opportunities to sell my products.”
Our interview with Nadia
I’m sure many of us have had a hairdresser horror experience – leaving either with damaged hair or a haircut that makes us not want to go outside for a while.
Having experienced this herself, Nadia set out to create a product to repair her damaged hair. The product she designed sparked an interest amongst her friends, who became Nadia’s first customers.
From this demand, Nu Elefa was born. Using efficient shipping logistics to distribute in the UK and globally, the haircare brand aims to change the way people feel about their natural hair and create a new level of confidence.
Nadia shares with us her entrepreneurial journey and advice for others hoping to do the same.
Twill: What sparked your interest in entrepreneurship?
Nadia: I have always had an interest in entrepreneurship because of my family background. Most of my relatives are entrepreneurs for a living, and it has definitely inspired me to start my own business.
Also, while I was at university, I suffered with traction alopecia then created a product to grow my hair back. My flatmate was so shocked at the results she wanted to try my hair serum so she paid me for it. From there I was given so many opportunities to sell my products.
When opportunity knocks, answer. Rather than letting it pass you by, say yes and see where it takes you.
Twill: And what inspired Nu Elefa?
Nadia: A lot of products we see in stores contain harsh chemicals and with long term use have adverse effects on the body. So Nu Elefa is inspired by the use of ancient plant remedies that have been developed across the globe for healthy hair. We use these plants to formulate products with afro textured hair in mind and that still work for all hair types.
Often, it’s personal experiences that ignite a business idea. Damaged hair from the salon, combined with an awareness of harsh products, inspired Nadia to create her own formula with natural ingredients to help others.
Twill: What does the day-to-day running of your business involve?
Nadia: It involves packing and shipping orders in the mornings. Then in the evenings, I create content to market our different products. This helps our potential customers understand the benefits of our products. We also frequently make contact with our school partner that we donate a percentage of our sales to.
Twill: What is your key selling point?
Nadia: We use all-natural pure ingredients to create the best haircare products that are effective, while donating a proportion of all sales to a school in Ghana called Blessed Little Angels.
Twill: Did you face any challenges in the making of Nu Elefa?
Nadia: The main challenge was balancing studying towards my degree and running a business simultaneously. Also being young and trying to navigate the world and the business world had its challenges. But I would often ask for advice from family and friends who have had a lot of experience.
If the business isn’t your only priority, try to create a schedule by dedicating certain hours to different responsibilities whilst factoring in downtime too. This should help with time management and organisation.
Twill: What is your business’ mission statement?
Nadia: Our mission is to create the best natural products that work for all while remaining socially driven.
Twill: What have you learnt going solo?
Nadia: Rest! Sometimes resting is what it takes to get you to the next step up. When you’re solo, you can easily feel like you always need to be doing something but resting is important. I’ve also learnt to use my network and outsource things to get things done quickly.
Yes, starting a business will be full-on. But remember to relax and factor in time for yourself. As important as it is to focus on your company, it’s just as important to enjoy yourself outside work.
Twill: Where do you export to?
Nadia: We send container shipments globally with a lot of customers coming from America and Canada. We also use shipping logistics to distribute in the UK, using local delivery services or independent couriers for urgent shipments.
Twill: What advice do you have for other budding entrepreneurs?
Nadia: I would say keep going no matter what and definitely keep building your network. You never know who can help you in the future.