Chichi Eburu spent much of her young adult life seeking—and never finding—cosmetics that would enhance her deep skin tone rather than trying to gray it out or hide it. All she found was a monolithic beauty industry with a very narrow Western view of what can be called “beautiful.” Unsatisfied with doing nothing to correct what she saw as an injustice, Chichi Eburu founded Juvia’s Place, an inclusive makeup brand that celebrates the richness of diversity across this planet.
She draws inspiration from African kingdoms, rebels, and rulers who often used makeup as a sign of position, power, and creativity. She encourages her many loyal customers not to fear making bold and beautiful makeup choices to enhance their natural beauty. From those seeking a “minimalist look” to those who embrace the endless creativity of makeup, all people will find shades, shimmers, and products to reveal their inner power.
Growing Up with Conflicting Beauty Messages
Chichi Eburu grew up in Nigeria, where she was bombarded with images of beauty that never showed women who shared her deep skin tone. As a child, she struggled to see herself as beautiful. What she saw in the mirror did not—could not—reflect the Western-influenced beauty industry’s monolithic standards.
At the same time, she had strong female role models—her mother, aunts, and others in her life. They were instrumental in helping her recognize that there was nothing wrong with her. The industry was flawed.
“We are a colorful people. Our makeup should reflect the richness of our culture, our beauty, and our history,” she states.
Chichi Eburu Takes Action Despite Limited Resources
Eburu was not content to sit around and complain about the industry, poisoning herself with hate and hopelessness. She was intent on changing it from within. She had fire and passion, but the industry is notoriously hard to break into, and she wasn’t independently wealthy. No angel investor would consider her a reasonable business risk.
She had two young children, a small apartment, a strong connection with her community, and $2000 to her name. It was all she needed to get started.
She purchased some supplies and started constructing makeup tools out of her home while her children slept in rooms on either side of her. She saved as much as she could, knowing that this was just the beginning.
Chichi Eburu Stays Focused on Her Inclusive Beauty Goals
Fledgling entrepreneur Chichi Eburu created a vision board to keep herself motivated. On it, she had images of Queens Nefertiti and Cleopatra, among great leaders and doers who inspired her. She would look at the board daily, considering how they expressed creativity and power through makeup.
Eburu Honors Her Family
When she had saved enough, it was time to expand her cosmetics brand and launch her first products. She chose the name Juvia’s Place after combining the names of her two children, Juwa and Olivia.
Eburu Introduces Her First Product Inspired by a Powerful Woman
Her first product was “The Nubian,” an eyeshadow palette inspired by Queen Nefertiti herself. The packaging carried her likeness and instantly went viral, selling out. This reinforced Eburu’s determination. She knew she was onto something. And it was only the first of a whole line of inclusive beauty products for all skin tones and shades of beauty.
Chichi Eburu Grows a Beloved Black-Owned Beauty Brand
Juvia’s Place went on to be featured in Harper’s Bazaar, where beauty journalists said of Eburu’s products, “long-lasting, high-impact color and created with darker skin tones in mind; a little goes a long way with this six-shade blush palette.”
While Eburu rocked online selling and social media, she earned exclusive product placement in 300 of the UK’s Superdrug stores and then prestigious placement in Ulta online and in stores worldwide.
Juvia’s Place has grown into one of the most talked about Black-owned beauty brands globally, with several million followers and subscribers on Instagram, YouTube, and her blog. Called Tribe Talk, she networks with well-known beauty influencers and shares tips, trends, inspiration, and tutorials. Throughout her website and social media, visitors are greeted by countless images of real customers who love her products.
Beauty Products That Celebrate All Shades of Beauty
Juvia’s Place has come a long way since that first product launch, with a diverse array of bold, long-wearing products for her varied customer base. One doesn’t have to look much further than the thousands of 4 and 5-star product reviews from verified buyers to know Juvia’s Place is filling a void for many customers long-ignored by the monolithic Western beauty industry.
Nubian Lash Collection
This collection is for those who believe one doesn’t have to sacrifice comfort for glamorous beauty. These lightweight lashes are made from vegan-friendly bionic silk and offer the wearer lift while adding drama. They’re perfect for both day and night wear. With several styles to choose from, these lashes consistently get 5 stars from Juvia’s Place loyal customers.
Nubian Earth Collection
This collection is inspired by the rustic, earthy tones of Northern Africa with colors like Nile, Morocco, and Nubian Nude. It features both mattes and shimmers to flatter all skin tones.
The Culture Collection
As Juvia’s Place’s most recent collection launch, Culture Collection celebrates a world of vibrant and imaginative color. This collection was designed for those who want to flaunt their unique look with products that shift colors depending on the angle of light.
I Live I Love Collection
Released for the 2021 holiday season, I Live I Love makes a bold statement with cool winter tones combined with splashes of warm rust reds.
Bronzed Duo Bronzer
The Duo Bronzer comes in shades that provide perfectly bronzed accents for those with fair skin through deep dark. Wearers can define and sculpt their facial features to create a one-of-a-kind look.
I Sculpt, I Shade Brow Pen
Encompassing shades from medium brown to ebony, Juvia’s Place invested in research to develop a brow pen that doesn’t smudge and delivers smooth application without a lot of work for a faster, flawless look.
Nomad Eyeshadow Palette
The Nomad is designed to stand out with classic yet bold, powerful colors like marigold and shimmering honey, allowing the wearer to make a statement whether they choose a minimalist, playful or powerful look.
42 Foundation Shades
And finally, true to her promise to herself and those everywhere who struggle to find a shade that works for them, Juvia’s Place offers an unheard-of within most big beauty brands 42 shades of foundation.
The foundation tones span from Marisol, a very light shade with neutral undertones, to Sudan, with cool undertones. Cool, warm, and neutral undertones within a shade help customers with all skin types find their perfect match.
Chichi has been there. She knows that accidentally buying a whole bottle that doesn’t work well with a person’s skin tone is a common annoyance across the beauty community. For this reason, Chichi Eburu has created a shade finder to help her customers confidently select the foundation that will work with their skin tone. On top of that, she offers a generous 60-day exchange policy if someone chooses a foundation that doesn’t work for them.
What’s Next for Eburu and Juvia’s Place?
Chichi Eburu embraced her rich culture, community, and all shades of beauty. She combined $2000 with a passion to make a difference and built an internationally-loved beauty brand. Juvia’s place continues to work toward its goal of inclusive beauty.