initiatives such as social distancing and hygiene measures including hand washing and the use of sanitisers.

PC: Is formulating an increasingly popular career for young Nigerian chemists? Will this be a focus for NICOS? GA: Nigerian consumers are increasingly keen to ‘buy Nigeria’ and so formulators and local manufacturing will help satisfy the demand. NICOS members are qualified

cosmetic scientists and engineers working in Nigeria and the diaspora. So it is important for NICOS to collaborate with various organisations including academia and businesses, to encourage education and good manufacturing practice in the cosmetics industry.

PC: What are the trends emerging in the industry? Do they mirror the trends of the wider industry? GA: Natural products for a healthier lifestyle and for the hair care market are definitely emerging trends. Organic claims are also becoming important.

PC: Are consumers in Nigeria strongly influenced by trends/ products in other countries? GA: Consumers in Nigeria living in Lagos and Abuja, the business and federal capitals respectively, tend to be knowledgeable and more strongly influenced by trends or products from other countries. A great example would be when

Rhianna first sported her famous vibrant red hairstyle, it literally spread like wildfire helped by the hugely successful Nollywood film industry.

PC: What plans do you have for NICOS in the coming 12 months? GA: In the next 12 months NICOS will continue to establish synergies with likeminded organisations and businesses to support the growing cosmetics industry in Nigeria. We are planning some virtual events over the coming months. On 2 July we will run the first in a series of educational webinars on the use of African Botanicals in the formulation of cosmetics. In the same month, on 8 July, NICOS will host its very first scientific conference, the theme of which is Elevating African Beauty through Science where we explore the regulatory landscape, grassroots research and the manufacture of safe and ethical cosmetics. We are also looking forward to making positive scientific contributions


to the upcoming 2021 IFSCC conference hosted by the Mexican Society.

South Africa Home to 59 million people, South Africa represents another significant market within the continent. With a diverse mix of ethnicities and languages the country is also considered a biodiversity hotspot (along with many other African countries), with a rich range of potential ingredient sources.

Based in Johannesburg,

Coschem is the abbreviated name of the Society of Cosmetic Chemists South Africa. Coschem provides an opportunity to exchange ideas of common interest and offers education and

training to its individual members. Personal Care spoke to

Coschem’s John Knowlton, Beverley Gardner and René Spada to learn more about South Africa’s approach to cosmetics and cosmetic science.

PERSONAL CARE: What are the challenges for cosmetic scientists in South Africa?

JOHN KNOWLTON: The biggest challenges for cosmetic scientists in South Africa are primarily associated

with the fact that geographically it is not seen as a major player in the global cosmetic industry, although that perception was noticeably changing prior to the outbreak of

the global COVID-19 pandemic. The relative unimportance of the South African marketplace from a global perspective, along with its unique sociodemographic ethnic mix, means that South Africa is not always seen as an important destination for the marketing of cosmetic products by many companies around the world. Against this backdrop, raw

material suppliers often perceive South Africa to be an opportunity of relatively low importance when compared with mature first world regions such as Europe and the US and this means that product development and innovation become difficult for cosmetic scientists to execute. In practice, this means difficulty in developing truly innovative cosmetic solutions and a raw material supply chain that makes rapid product development to market very challenging indeed.

BEVERLEY GARDNER: Cosmetic scientists can be mainly divided between students having recently

Lagos, Nigeria.

left tertiary study institutes and working for manufacturers and those who are more qualified, working at manufacturers or research organisations. The challenge for the ‘junior’ level scientists is that there is not a great availability of employment in this

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