As we grow older, we begin to understand and appreciate that beauty isn’t standard. Zanele draws that lesson from being the neighbourhood ‘monkey face’, a nickname given to her by a woman in her community. “That used to make me feel less beautiful and [I lost] confidence in myself.” Thankfully, as she grew up, she discovered that beauty comes from within and that ours is to accept and appreciate every part of who we are in all dimensions of humanity. That belief led her to founding Zaneida Global Cosmetics, a beauty brand dedicated to igniting and unleashing the beauty that is within.
Zaneida Global came to life when Zanele got the idea to move from selling other people’s products, to selling her own. “I used to sell make-up from overseas [and soon] the passion [for] selling beauty products grew. [Then] one day, while I was on a call at work, someone approached me [wanting] to buy a lipstick colour that was out of stock from my supplier, and I thought to myself – why not create my own brand?!” she shares.
Currently, the company offers two main products. The first is an SPF50 Anti-Aging Sunscreen with collagen that protects skin from sun rays and helps retain youthfulness. “Most people think sunscreen must [only] be worn when going to the beach and that conception is wrong. The sun can burn you today [but you may only] see the effect in 10 years.” Zaneida Global also sells a wipeable makeup gown.
As a full-time professional, the challenge of having at least two giant balls in the air isn’t easy. “Exhausted as I am after knocking off, I have to invest hours into the business. I had to draw up a schedule with daily and weekly targets. This meant I had to spend less time doing the things I love and with friends and family. But I knew it was temporary. Fortunately, having a good support structure of loving friends and family helped me whenever I needed support and encouragement,” she says.
She also expresses concern over how hard it is for start-up womxn entrepreneurs to successfully penetrate sectors dominated by other races or males. “Generally, it is difficult for small businesses to be prioritised or taken seriously, [especially] for womxn in male-dominated industries.” She adds that “it’s vital that we create a platform for upcoming and future entrepreneurs that will assist [them with] penetrating certain/relevant markets and [avail full information] on building sustainable businesses and funding.”
Zanele’s passion for the industry and entrepreneurship has pushed her to help pave the way for aspiring beauty professionals and entrepreneurs from other industries. “We are [working on] creating a programme where we will be funding people who want to be entrepreneurs. In the interim, R10 of every sunscreen purchased [from] our first batch will [go towards] supporting someone who desires to be a makeup artist. We are in communication with a new makeup school called La Primera Beauty Institute. Our vision is [for] the success of Zaneida Global Cosmetics [to help fund] start-up entrepreneurs from different sectors.”