Farida Yahya


The challenges facing many women in Africa of how to manage and care for their natural hair is one that entrepreneur Farida Yahya is all too familiar with. It was the inspiration for the launch of her business Lumo Naturals, which today creates a range of specialist hair products that both cleanse and treat the hair gently. Today, the brand is winning scores of fans who are looking for a natural solution for their natural hair.

Lumo Naturals is an award-winning haircare solutions brand. With over 6 years in operation and a team of professional hair consultants and stylists, they offer a wide range of hair services and products. They provide quality hair services, along with top lines of our well formulated natural hair products.

As a naturalista, growing up, Farida saw her mother try to tame her hair with tons of relaxers. Farida’s mother tried various products and used tons of strategies but none ever worked. And just like other natural hair owners, she had problems with her own hair ranging from breakage to dry hair, breaking the piggy bank to get premium products to maintain the hair, as well as shrinkage. Additionally, Farida would spend so much time watching tons of videos on YouTube and natural hair blogs looking for tips and inspirations. In 2008, Farida resorted to making DIY products for her hair because there were no big shops that sold natural hair care products in her location. Interestingly, her experiments worked and people began to buy them.

As a female founder, you should never feel pressured to “lead like the boys”. There is nothing wrong in leading with empathy, and you should know that the world of entrepreneurship is tough, and so, don’t demand things from the angle of a victim, instead work hard and smart enough to have those doors open for you. When you do succeed, look back and lift others, mentorship and support is crucial for female founders, if we want to go far, and build the mass we need to change things for good. — Farida Yahya.

Lumo Naturals was birthed in 2012. It started with the production of the first set of natural hair care products – hair butter. And with Farida’s over nine years of experience in biochemistry and a diverse range of complementary skill sets, she has been able to create an extensive offering of affordable natural hair care products designed to benefit naturalistas.

For Farida, running her own business has pushed her to grow. Being responsible for her team and customers has challenged her to learn about how money works, what is required from a leader, and why it is important to deliver quality service consistently.
Farida says she is happiest when she solves a client’s hair challenge, and when she gets feedback about their formulations. In her words, “it gives me such a thrill to know that I am doing my quota to help make the world a better place, and reduce social inequalities.”

Lumo Naturals fill a unique niche in the beauty space. Their product line includes everything from hair cleansers to hair treatments and hair scrums, with a focus on multi-functional products. Additionally, all their products showcase clean, locally sourced ingredients that are cruelty-free, animal-free, and free of harmful irritants and additions such as parabens, benzene, and formaldehyde.

week is Farida Yahya, an author, entrepreneur, and startup coach. She’s the founder of LumoNaturals, an Abuja-based natural haircare solutions brand. She’s also a startup tutor and the founder of The Brief Academy, a learning hub for female startup owners.

Farida’s LumoNaturals provides a combination of natural products, techniques, artistic styles and education about African hair and the importance of healthy and natural hair to naturalistas.

In her book Redefining Beautiful, Farida shared her then 10-year old journey in going natural and starting LumoNaturals.

Farida, a BellaNaija contributor was one of the 10 youth leaders selected to meet (the then) UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon (in 2015) to discuss development, climate change and the role of the youths in promoting the sustainable development goals and increasing momentum and ownership in Nigeria.

She’s also a member of a UNDP-selected group of young leaders as part of a technical group for the sustainable development goals to inspire the next generation of leaders on their roles in localising and achieving the goals in sub national levels.

She launched Northernlife Nigeria in 2016, an online media platform designed to showcase the diversity of the people of Northern Nigeria, using multimedia channels, citizen reporting, and creative writing, exploring the rich cultural history of its people. The platforms is working towards changing the narrative of region as one of under-achievers, and engaging the citizens on collective responsibility to solve the region’s challenges.

She’s also the co-founder of Ja Muje, a platform for citizen-led, community-driven action towards achieving sustainable growth and development of Northern Nigeria, with a focus on education, health, business and innovation. The Forum employs an innovative approach of combining conversations, a think tank of researchers and a mentors’ program to build a community of changers and youth leaders.

Farida has a BSc in Biochemistry from the University of Maiduguri and had work as a laboratory assistant in Dangote Flour Mills in Kano.

Farida was on Leading Ladies Africa’s “100 Most Influential Women in Nigeria” list in 2020.

We celebrate Farida for being an inspiration in entrepreneurship and for her work in achieving the sustainable development goals, especially in northern Nigeria.