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Toni Nkhahle is one of South Africa’s most bankable influencers. She’s got stunning looks, a banging body, and a killer sense of style. From 2016, she has built a strong, engaged audience on Instagram.

The spotlight has had a considerable impact on her life, but the pressure didn’t shake her beliefs, deter her from her goals or alter who she really is. In our exclusive interview with her, Nkhahle opens up about her journey so far; she dropped nuggets of wisdom and literally made us laugh loads during our chat.

toni nkahle

Nkhahle is funny, smart, and focused in life. Truly, she’s humble and super adorable we must say. Want to know how to bag big deals with brands such as Fashion Nova, maintain your principles in a tempting online world and still succeed in life? Read on and be inspired!

Fashion Today: You’ve been big on social media for quite a while. As early as 2016, you were popping. What do you feel has been your biggest lesson being an influencer.

Toni Nkhahle: I’ve learnt to be myself. Being a public figure puts pressure on you to conform to what the public wants. At the onset, while I was on campus, I always felt like I needed to post new stuff to keep people talking. I was very young and I did not really know myself very well. So, I kept people talking and it felt good when I was trending. I, however, thank my boyfriend who literally saved me from being lost in this vast maze of social media.

Also read: Get To Know Fancy Makadia: Her Source Of Money, Fashion Inspiration & Big Dreams

FT: You’ve worked with Fashion Nova before. Many people wonder, how do we get such deals? 

TN: Initially, I approached lots of South African brands to work with. It proved difficult getting deals because either they weren’t willing to pay, or you simply needed connections. Thus, I decided to approach the likes of Fashion Nova, Pretty Little Thing, and other international fashion houses.

toni nkahle

Fashion Nova decided to take a chance with me with their Curve line. Our first campaign was free. But I had to take it; it’s a big brand and I just needed my foot in the door.

The posts did so well that they decided to pay me per post. They requested to know how much I would charge them; I did my calculations, including the minimum I needed to make per month to cater for my bills.

I became their first-ever South African brand ambassador; I am grateful for the chance that they gave me.

FT: Does it pay to be an influencer in South Africa?

TN: Yes, it does. But, it depends on who you know. I know of micro-influencers with just a few hundred thousand followers but they are living the life.

How it works is, if your influencer friend knows artists and brands that pay well, they connect you with them. Then, you get paid very well to constantly promote their events, music, or even clubs. Once you’ve made it in SA, you really have made it.

toni nkahle

FT: You’ve been quite public with who you’re dating. Has it been easy? 

TN: I actually got into my first relationship when I was 18. I was quite shy and very insecure. I always wondered if my boyfriend would take me as I am.

So a month into the relationship, I posted him to show him that I truly loved him; I was a different person in real life. I wasn’t the Toni who was trending and whose DMs were popping. 

In fact, I had to make a tough choice. My friends were like, I should date the ballers who could fly me to Dubai, spoil me with all kinds of gifts and live a lavish life. But my boyfriend was enough for me.

Also read: Germany-based Tanzanian Model Catherine Scott On Choosing Brand Collabs

He told me that I did not have to go that path; I did not have to do what everyone wanted me to do. I must admit that it was quite tempting. So after a while, we stopped thinking about and caring about what people thought about us. He’s quite shy by the way; I still am but we’re no longer confined to what people expect us to do.

FT: What’s your biggest dream that you’re yet to achieve?

TN: I want to start one of the best schools in the world. Growing up, I was taught by teachers from Zambia and Zimbabwe. They were so smart. In SA, the education system doesn’t favor nurturing of talent.

I would like to build an institution that caters to everyone; whether they wish to be musicians, pilots…no one should have to pursue what they’re not passionate about. 

toni nkahle

I personally pursued actuarial science but I am into fashion and music. I do sing, by the way, and I’ll soon launch a YouTube channel and drop my rap music. You should expect amazing things from me. 

FT: Let’s talk about your fashion sense. How would you describe it?

TN: It’s dynamic, but still, one thing is consistent. I love my crop tops. Come summer, come winter, I love putting on crop tops because I love my tummy. I can be a tomboy, rocking some leggings, sneakers, and a crop top, and I can be girly when going to a restaurant; that lovely dress does it. 

TN: How has your personality evolved ever since you joined Instagram?

TN: I come from a family of beautiful women with nice bodies but while growing up I wasn’t always sure about myself. I wasn’t always like, I am fine, I am hot…I was laid back. However, my success on Instagram confirmed just that and I am humbled and grateful. 

FT: You have fans from all over Africa and beyond. Have you met some of them in real life? How was your experience?

Yes! I have. I always maintain a low profile when I am out and about but there will always be someone who sees me and comes up to me to say hi. It can be scary but I am grateful for the love.

Also read: Spotlight: Ronnie Royals Tells Us Her Lessons From Fashion Modeling

I don’t use the same name as Instagram on Uber by the way. I use my middle name so that my driver doesn’t expect to be picking up Toni Nkhahle. All in all, it’s been quite a memorable experience.

There you have it! Toni is a multifaceted young, beautiful lady with great ambitions. She’s truly inspiring and we wish her all the best in her career!

Many know her for her incredible beauty, popping melanin, and amazing dance moves. Fast-rising influencer Fancy Makadia is becoming a force to reckon with in the media industry, as she is redefining how business is done. She has found a way to make money, be paid for her worth, and while at it, inspire many young people who look up to her.

A fashion icon in her own right, the France-based influencer has kept her fan base growing back in Kenya. She is stylish, daring, and experimental. Unlike her other family members, Makadia is soft-spoken, but don’t mistake that for shyness. Her mom Akothee has taught her to live her life to the fullest and have a purpose in life.

fancy makadia
Fancy Makadia / Courtesy / Skirt by @shoptungatunga

In our inspiring conversation with her, we were surprised to find out little-known stuff about her. Just like us, she is human and there are some things she has had to overcome and despite a celebrity’s daughter, nothing comes on a silver platter. Enjoy and share!

Fashion Today: Why did you decide to be an influencer?

Fancy Makadia: You know, I was known as the dancer. All I would just do is dance. So there’s this one time I posted on my Facebook page, asking my followers which products they’ve never gotten a chance to buy. 

Also read: Meet The Sexy Ugandan Model Who Is Taking Over Africa

I noticed that people came to buy and sell in my comments section. People were actually making successful purchases. This made me realize that I can try and create a brand, market people’s items and help them reach a wider audience.

That’s how I decided to be an influencer. 

FT: How would you describe your experience…what are some of the interesting experiences that you’ve had so far as an influencer?

FM: Before, brands were reluctant to approach me. I was also scared because I was like, I’m so far from Kenya and most of my followers are based there. However, I learnt that it was about skills; not location. It is more about what you bring to the table.

When I signed my first contract, I really learnt a lot. Before this, I never knew anything about social media insights and analytics. I got to know what kind of content people want.

It made it easier for me to plan myself. I would say it’s a journey that’s been really amazing.

fancy makadia
Fancy looking lovely in an African print dress by @shoptungatunga

FT: You’ve spoken about contracts. Tell us, how do you go about contracts, because many influencers out there get approached, casually decide on the price and go straight into working. I’ve seen many complaints online from influencers claiming that they weren’t paid. Can you touch on the importance of contracts and what are the most vital details that should be included?

FM: For the first endorsement that I signed, we had to sign a contract. It basically included the period of time that I was going to work with them and how much they were going to pay me. On my side, I had what content I was going to bring.

Also read: 10 Times Azziad Nasenya Looked Super Stylish

This is important so that you and your boss – the client – don’t have scuffles. When you are busy for example, you have to check your schedule with the contract. For instance, if you have a contract for six months, you have to know what you will be doing within that time.

The contract literally spells out the payment terms so that you don’t have to worry about getting your money when the time comes to be paid. The first thing that you have to ask for as an influencer is a contract.

FT: Have you ever had an experience where clients take too long to pay you, you have to follow up severally?

FM: For me, I chose a different path. I did not want to work with clients and then they pay after. I work with upfront payment. I start the work from the day you’ve paid me. This is because I’m in a different country. You can’t trust everyone. Someone might decide not to pay you, block you and you might not find a way to reach them. So they always pay me first then I deliver their content agreement.

FT: You definitely wish to work with bigger brands in the future. Which are some of the names you wish to collaborate with and why? 

FM: I would love to work with brands here in France and some back at home. For now, I’m doing just fashion, but I also want to collaborate with gadget brands like Tecno Mobile. Then there’s also Home 254 apparel.

fancy makadia
Fancy in a @shoptungatunga jacket

FT: Since there are many brands that approach you for collaborations, what do you consider before you choose to work with one?

FM: Firstly, I always look at the product. They have to send me something that I’m very, very comfortable with. As a content creator, you also have to think of ways to produce content with the products that they are going to give you. 

Also read: Mary Erica: ‘When It Comes To Your Dreams, Just Shoot Your Shot’

So if they give you an item you’re not comfortable with, you will be blank. 

FT: Now, let’s take a detour and talk about your dancing. I’ve been seeing your amazing choreography videos. The moves are on point. People really love what you do; the comments section is always lit. Were you always a dancer growing up, or is it just something that you started recently?

FM: I think me and dance are like married, you know, haha. I started dancing when I was a little girl. I can’t remember the age I was but I’ve been dancing my whole life. 

FT: So how do you find TikTok when it comes to content creation compared to the other platforms?

FM: TikTok…that’s an app that’s hard to predict. Because…one time you are up, the next you’re down. When I post something on Facebook, it goes viral in a second but TikTok, really takes time. It has its own people.

But I’ll keep trying because it’s better to give it a shot than to fail.

FT: How do you find verification of pages different in Europe compared to Kenya?

FM: I think Facebook is the easiest platform to get verified on. But one thing you have to know is that consistency is key. So when my social media marketing team was very consistent with the posting, I gained more followers, and one day I woke up to find that I was verified.

fancy makadia
Fit by @shoptungatunga

FT: You’ve said that you have a team that is behind your online presence. How did you come about selecting people with whom you can trust your brand? That’s definitely a big risk to take…

FM: Trust me, social media is something that you really need to take care of…because, you never know. Someone might post something and the next thing you’re trending for the wrong reasons. 

Also read: 10 Times Boity Killed It With Her Style

There are people who have seen me grow, who have been there for me and they were like, why not create a Facebook account? I said let’s do this. Since they really advised me, I agreed that we do this together.

FT: Do you personally respond to comments or it’s just the team?

FM: Yeah yeah, I respond to comments.

FT: You are currently studying Hospitality and Management. The travel and hospitality industry has been affected by the pandemic. The industry is very volatile…so are you still interested in pursuing a career in that field?

FM: I’m still very interested. No matter what happens, I must keep on pushing.

FT: On the issue of bad energy and cyberbullying, how have you managed to deal with this because most of your family members are in the public domain?

FM: Back in 2018, I posted a picture of my dad and me on Instagram. He is white. So, people came on trolling, saying things like ‘he’s your sponsor’, and it made me feel bad. I started crying. My mum has been of big support in my life. 

She’s like, seriously? Are you crying because of someone somewhere using their own data bundles to talk badly of you? She says that we all have 24 hours in a day to do things. She adds that whatever I came to do in this life, God gave me a purpose. Hence, I stopped minding what people say.

Some comments are very nasty, but we just need to stop listening to negative comments.

fancy makadia
Outfit by @shoptungatunga. We dig those Bantu knots!

FT: About your fashion sense, I noticed that you really love African print. Is it someone else’s influence on you or how do you go about choosing your style?

FM: In the beginning, I wasn’t really digging African print. But, when the Tunga Tunga endorsement came in, and they wanted me to collaborate with them, I was like let’s try something new.

When they first sent me my first bunch of clothes I fell in love with African print. I was like from now on, go African or go home.

FT: When it comes to taking pictures, there’s a huge difference between what’s on Instagram and in real life. How do you prevent yourself from being carried away into being someone that you’re not?

FM: When I’m taking my Instagram pictures, I just try to be normal. Because once someone out there sees me looking different from what’s on Instagram, it will be an embarrassment. I literally try to be free-spirited, create a mood, laugh and it makes me feel I’m being real.

FT: Mental health also comes into play. There are expectations from fans, you being a public figure. How do you deal with situations that may undermine your mental health?

FM: So every morning, my mum sends me some very motivational quotes on how to deal with mental health. So I feel like nothing on social media will ever bring me down. There’s a time I went online and some people were like, we can see your pants, which wasn’t true.

Also read: Get To Know Patricia Aika, The Stylish Corporate Lawyer And Influencer

I asked myself, should I feel bad about this? I decided not to. If you are a creator with a big nose, there’s nothing you can change about it. So it’s all about self-acceptance.

FT: Where do you see yourself in the next two to three years in terms of being an influencer?

FM: I look forward to having more brands working with me, especially in France. I am already doing that back home, even though I’m currently working with three. I want to take a big step and go big globally.

FT: You truly avoid controversy and drama. Is that intentional or do you just like playing it low?

FM: I think it is both. I don’t like problems or drama. Once you don’t have drama in your life, you’re good to go.

Top by @shoptungatunga

FT: Young people who may be looking up to you may not see the other side of things. Maybe they think everything is easy for you. What do you have to tell them?

FM: Nothing comes on a silver platter. People think that since I’m in France, all I do is wait for mum’s money. No, I work hard for my own money. You cannot just sit and expect things to come to you. God helps those who help themselves. You have to try. I previously got many comments, people telling me that I can’t do it, that I’m so shy.

Also read: Joan Kubai Reveals Where She Shops, Her Love For Nollywood And Soft Side

I was like, I will prove you guys wrong. Just trying to do something can help you in life. This was a trial and error situation, and it got me somewhere I didn’t think I would be. 

There you have it! Fancy has big dreams to achieve and we wish her the very best in her journey. Keep it Fashion Today VIP magazine for more inspiring conversations!

 

21-year old TikTok creator Jus Kaysha (birth name Joy Kilungya)  is not just your average influencer. She’s stylish, energetic, smart, and hilarious. Her feed on TikTok – @jus.kaysha is definitely to die for. 

Her fast-growing audience is adoring and supportive of her. The creator’s signature fashion style is characterized by colorful dresses, fitting jeans and accompanying sneakers, and her signature sleek sunglasses.

We caught up with her to find out the inspiration behind her dressing as well as her journey as a content creator. Kaysha is definitely a talent to keep an eye on in the coming months and years.

She’s definitely going to be the next big thing on Kenyan TikTok! Enjoy the conversation.

Fashion Today: Where do you shop by the way? Do you thrift?

Jus Kaysha: The kinda fits I love, I get them from hiistyle…yes I do thrift but not always…some of the clothes I get then turn them into something else like most of my dresses. Here’s an example of a fit I designed:

jus kaysha

FT: Wow…you design too? 

JK: That was actually a dress that I cut into a dress and a top. I don’t know if that’s what I’d call it but yeah…I’d worn it many times so I changed it to that 😂

FT: Wow… It looks like someone who is experienced designed it…like went to fashion school…

JK: Noo but fashion is something I’ll do later on…I dream of having a fashion house. But I do watch a few fashion hacks when bored or in my leisure time.

FT: If you were to go for an international luxury brand for your wedding gown, which one would you choose?

JK: About the international luxury brand for a wedding gown I wouldn’t know but Kim Kardashian being my fashion idol, having totally loved her wedding gown, I would go to that brand; Givenchy.

jus kaysha

FT: What do you consider stylish in a man?

JK: Mmmh stylish man…For me, a stylish man is a clean man. What  I mean by this is a man who’s well organized. You can tell if a man is organized by how he dresses. He doesn’t need to have those luxurious things like designer clothes but by how he carries himself. A nice haircut, clean shoes, nice scent maybe…and how he also keeps his staff.

FT: What’s your favorite kinda sunglasses to wear?

JK: I love big sunglasses that I can wear at the beach. I find them sexy.

FT: What is that essential thing you never leave the house without?

JK: There are several. Sunglasses, lip gloss, and lipstick. But, if I were to choose one it would be either lip gloss or lipstick.

jus kaysha

FT: Finally, why do you want to be a fashion house owner?

JK: My reason for wanting to be a fashion house owner is I’ll get to create outfits that I like. I love redesigning outfits too. I’ll definitely meet big fashion people too that I’ll for sure learn from. Plus I just love fashion, you know, looking nice and classy. I would also be happy to see people getting outfits from me because they love them. It will be a dream come true.

Here are more gorgeous pics of Kaysha:

Known for her bold and stylish fashion style, Joan Kubai is a fast-rising internet personality whom millions adore and draw inspiration from. She first made headlines after doing an expansive house tour that left Kenyans amazed. Kubai might be young – 20 – but her creativity, confidence, and intelligence are unmatched.

Her bubbly personality makes her instantly lovable and her humility is exceptional. At Fashion Today HQ, we decided to find out more about the gorgeous influencer. Kubai comes across as simple yet outspoken. Her fashion style reflects her bold side. 

joan kubai

She’s not bound by anyone’s opinion and her free-spirited vibe is what makes her stand out from the crowd. Don’t mistake her for settling for less though; whatever she does, Kubai always makes sure to keep it classy. Read on our candid conversation and be inspired!

Fashion Today: How would you describe your style?

Joan Kubai: My style is trendy and sporty to some extent ‘cause I’m a cyclist. I’m also a swimmer. When I’m doing outdoor activities I’m sporty but on normal day occasions, I go trendy.

FT: You’ve been creating content on YouTube…how did the idea come about?

JK: I don’t have a YouTube channel for reasons I don’t even know. But…maybe I’ll have it soon? I’ll decide. However, I was featured on the Light Art Club channel.

Also read: Gabriela Rocha: My journey hasn’t been easy at all

The idea came after the house tour. They wanted to know more about me…what brought about the house tour…how I became best friends with Cynthia…and how we’ve sustained it for 10 years. Yeah…that’s how it was conceived.

joan kubai

FT: Who inspires you in the way that you dress up, especially a celebrity?

JK: Let me just say I don’t have any celebrity who inspires me. But I dress like me. I find something cute in the closet. I often match it up with some shoes. Most of my inspo comes from watching Instagram reels.

FT: If you were to go on vacation, an island in South Asia, what are the essentials you’d carry in your bag?

JK: First…my sunglasses. Two my bikinis. I love rocking bikinis when I go to coastal areas. I would not forget sunscreen…my perfume and nice-looking sandals. I’d also bring along nice shorts and skirts. Oh and kimonos for when I’m putting on my bikinis.

Also read: 10 Times Azziad Nasenya Looked Super Stylish

FT:  Ever had a fashion fail in public? If yes, how did you deal with it?

JK: I’ve actually never had a fashion fail in public. Yeah…hehe. I’m always dressed for the occasion.

FT: If your cousin was going on a prom date, and it’s a cold season, what would you advise her to wear?

JK: Uum…I’d advise her to wear a short fur coat, a long maxi, a stylish dress with a slit and matching heels.

joan kubai

FT: Since films and music influence fashion a lot, do you have any favorite shows that inspire you?

JK: Funny thing – I don’t watch shows. I only watch mostly series and movies. The shows that I like have nothing to do with fashion; it’s always Modern Family.

I’ve rewatched it a lot. I don’t think I have a show that influences my fashion. I do Lil Tjay, Pop Smoke, Future, Gunna, Cardi B, Roddy Ricch, and Toosii. I love being extra though…always at my best.

FT: Do you thrift shop? Apart from that what are some of your favorite high street fashion and luxury brands?

JK: I actually thrift shop and I don’t have any specific place I shop. I can go to Toi Market, I can get online. There’s this shop that I love and I’m planning to get some stuff there soon. I literally like Nike, Louis Vuitton, and Adidas.

FT: Since you are a public figure in certain aspects, what’s one thing that people would be surprised to know about you?

JK: Hehe! I love watching Nollywood movies! My family even tells me I have a problem. But yeah, I love Nigerian movies. 

There you go! Her soft side is even more interesting. Make sure to follow her on Instagram, kubaijoan.ke

We can’t wait to see what Joan has in store for us in 2021.

At the age of six, UK-based Kenyan model Debbie Opiata would play dress-up. This sparked a long-term interest in fashion, and over the years, she has grown to appreciate it even more.

“I find beauty in owning, accepting who you are, and learning how to say who you are without having to speak, but through your style. In my world, there exists nothing like being overdressed,” Opiata says.

The 22-year-old style enthusiast is hugely inspired by Coco Chanel, who once said ‘in order to be irreplaceable, you’ve got to always be different.’

Debbie Opata
Debbie Opiata / Courtesy

Her Instagram reflects just that. Her style is distinct and is an embodiment of who she is. Opiata is a budding micro-influencer whose fan base is highly engaged.

From her comments, you can tell that people adore what she loves doing, and is a next-generation young leader in style and influence. We sat down with her to find out more about her journey in fashion. You wouldn’t want to miss this one.

Also read: Mary Erica: ‘When It Comes To Your Dreams, Just Shoot Your Shot’

Fashion Today: What inspired you to venture into fashion modeling?

Debbie Opiata: I had always dreamt of venturing into fashion modeling but I didn’t quite have the self-confidence it required. My biggest inspiration was Yelena, a UK-based fashion model, and blogger who unapologetically owns her body and who she is. Being of a similar physical build, Yelena inspired me to do the same.

FT: Is there someone you have always looked up to in this industry?

DO: Yes, not just one but multiple. The top two being two highly influential, bold, and beautiful queens, Rihanna and Beyoncé take the lead among the icons I have always looked up to. I also love Yelena, Amanda Khamkaew, and Jess Hunt among others.

Debbie Opata

FT: How has your experience been so far?

DO: Every new day has its own new lesson, but I’m glad to have had a positive and rewarding experience so far in many different aspects. I’m definitely looking forward to what the future holds.

FT: Are there any brands you’ve worked with that you loved?

DO: I love and respect all the brands I’ve worked with so far as they all embody what I believe in; individuality, inclusivity, and most importantly, elegance.

Also read: 10 Times Azziad Nasenya Looked Super Stylish

FT: What’s the biggest challenge you’ve had and how did you overcome it?

DO: My biggest challenge so far was building my self-confidence in front of the camera. As far as I can remember, I was never the type of girl who loved taking pictures but thanks to one of my friends who possess amazing photography skills, I was able to overcome this through having multiple photoshoots with him and I’ll forever be grateful for that.

FT: Many people ask, does modeling pay? What’s your answer to that?

DO: The answer is yes, it does pay. However, I have learned that getting to that point requires a lot of patience, determination, consistency, and understanding that everyone’s journey is different. It’s all a matter of time.

FT: Since the world is rapidly accepting models of all sizes…what would you say to encourage those who are afraid because of body shaming?

DO: I believe it all goes down to learning how to accept and love yourself for who you are because there’s no one else in this world like you.

Also read: Exclusive: Spicy Efuru Reveals Meaning Behind Her Name

You could be the most beautiful person in the world, and everybody sees light and rainbows when they look at you, but if you yourself don’t know it, none of that even matters. Self-love and acceptance go a long way.

FT: What’s your biggest goal that you are yet to achieve in the industry?

I believe in dreaming big, working towards your goals in silence, and letting success make the noise. Nonetheless, my ultimate goal would definitely have to be owning an all-inclusive fashion brand that would encourage anyone and everyone to love and accept themselves for who they are, and most importantly leave behind a legacy of inspiration in the industry in all possible ways. I believe I’ll get there.

FT: Who has been your biggest support system so far?

DO: My close friends. I have to admit staying consistent and believing in myself isn’t the easiest thing to do at all times, but I’ll forever be grateful for my close friends for always encouraging and believing in me with no doubt. Hand in hand with my personal self-confidence, they are the reason I believe that I will surpass my goals.

FT: Finally, what do you have to say to your fans?

DO: Just as my beautiful mother always says to me, you can achieve whatever you set your mind to. No dream is ever too big to be actualized.

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For our latest Spotlight, we feature YouTuber Makena Mbui. The 21-year-old is the ultimate definition of uniquely different. Her fast-growing YouTube channel – which you should definitely subscribe to – offers a constant dose of beauty tips, amazing retro-style videos and of course a peek into her life.

The gorgeous content creator is currently pursuing a degree in Informatics and Computer Science at Strathmore University. During her free time, she enjoys drawing, painting and listening to lots of music. 

“The things closest to my heart are my family, my friends and my dogs,” Makena says. 

makena mbui
Makena with one of her dogs / Instagram

We had a virtual interview with her to find out more about her motivations, goals and her experience so far as a content creator. And mindblown we were. She comes across as smart, thought-provoking and well-organized.

Eager to learn a thing or two from her? Read on!

Fashion Today: Why did you venture into content creation?

Makena Mbui: Content creation was a way for me to get through that period when we all had to quarantine ourselves. 

It was supposed to be an outlet for all the things I was feeling and thinking because at the time all that occupied all our minds was the pandemic and the fact that it was changing all our lives, and not in a positive way at all. 

In her chilled out element / Instagram

There was a lot of negative emotions at the time, not knowing what to expect and I needed a way to take my mind off of all of it even if it was for a few minutes or hours and for me creating content did exactly that and even today I still use content creation as a way to take my mind off of things that stress me out.

FT: How has been your experience so far?

MM: It has been amazing. I love every single part of it. Content creation has pushed me to become more organized, to be better at planning my time because aside from the usual tasks I have, I have to make time to create my content. The only way I’m able to do all that is if I create to-do lists that make my days run smoothly.

Also read: Mary Erica: ‘When It Comes To Your Dreams, Just Shoot Your Shot’

Aside from that, I’ve definitely stepped out of my comfort zone both in terms of my character and my sense of style. I’ve been able to explore different styles and that’s something I’ve wanted to do for a very long time. 

FT: How would you describe your beauty regimen?

When I think about my beauty regimen, the only word I can use to describe it is simple. To me, it is very important to take care of your skin without doing too much. 

For my skin, I am not chasing perfection, I am chasing health. I’ve never been bothered by the scars I have. I’ve read it time and time again that clear skin isn’t always healthy skin and that is something I strongly go by. 

So for my beauty regimen, I just stick to having a proper cleanser, a toner, moisturizer and sunscreen, as simple as that.

FT: What’s the best part about being a content creator?

The satisfaction that comes with seeing the end result of something you’ve put so much time and effort into. 

Also read: Irmina Maina: Be You, The World Will Adjust

I usually have ideas in my mind and sometimes I don’t think I can pull them off but seeing those ideas come to life is one of the best feelings.

FT: You are a fashionable content creator. How would you describe your sense of style?

I don’t think there’s a word I could use to describe my sense of style cause it’s all over the place. 

I spend a significant amount of time on Pinterest and I draw most of my inspiration from there and most times I mix different “aesthetics” to create outfits I think can look good and this is why I find it really hard to find a word or adjective to describe my particular style.

FT: What are the lessons you’ve learnt so far in your journey as a content creator?

The main lesson I’ve learnt is to be patient with myself when coming up with content and it’s OK if somethings don’t work out. 

Sometimes it can get so frustrating, especially when something that seems so clear in your mind doesn’t turn out the same when it’s time for execution and that’s why patience is so important.

Also read: 10 Times Azziad Nasenya Looked Super Stylish

Also, I’ve learnt how important it is to believe in myself because I could have all the support in the world but if I do not believe in myself it would all be for nothing.

FT: As a content creator, monetization could be part of your end goal. Which are some of the brands you’d love to work with?

MM: I would love to one day work with Prada, Fenty, Chanel, ASOS and Nasty Gal.

makena mbui

FT: In Kenya, who do you look up to in vlogging and why?

I really enjoy Yasmin Af’s vlogs mainly because her vlogs kind of feel like we’re on Facetime or a video call and that’s what I usually aim for when vlogging. 

I want my audience to feel like we’re on Facetime having a normal conversation as I would with my friends because that’s what I consider my audience as, my friends. 

The same way I would normally do my regular tasks even when I’m Facetiming my friends is the same effect I try to bring out in my vlogs.

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For our recent Spotlight feature, we sat down with a Germany-based Tanzanian model and influencer Catherine Scott. We talked about interesting stuff, from influencer taxation to growing a loyal following on social media.

The 21-year-old comes across as interesting, witty, and visionary. Scott has built a solid following on Instagram, and it’s growing fast. She’s a very creative person and is big on personal development.

If you visit the @hiiii_style Instagram page, you’ll notice some of the most beautiful women in Kenya. Fashion modeling is what they do out of passion. Among them is Ronnie Royals, a budding journalist who has always had a love for fashion modeling.

We had a virtual interview with the gorgeous style enthusiast. One of the things that we learned from her inspiring story is that you should never let go of your dreams. Having done modeling while in high school, Ronnie knew that the craft was part of her future.

She’s arguably the most popular TikTok creator in Sub-Saharan Africa. The actress and content creator also has a superb sense of style that is both stylish and trend-setting. Azziad Nasenya is a role model for many, and she’s literally inspired millions who look up to her.

Azziad makes her own rules; from her signature blonde, short hair cut to the iconic quotes that she drops from time to time. 

South African media personality Boity is by far one of the most influential public figures in Africa. Her career started off when she starred as a model in a Wimpy commercial back in March 2010. This was her breakthrough. She then went on to do commercials for DSTv Africa and MiWay, something that led her to be a show host.

Her beauty is to die for. The Sowetan newspaper named her the Sexiest Woman in South Africa in 2012 and 2013. As if that’s not enough, Boity was once ranked number 72 in FHM’s 100 Sexiest Women in the World.

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