Sahra Mohamed started her beauty company Skin Mama to create a sustainable livelihood for female farmers in Somalia.
Sahra’s interview on BBC4
The company’s philosophy is to produce ethical and environmentally responsible products so that beauty buyers in the UK can become empowered by the knowledge that feeling good, can, and in this case does, equate to doing good.
Sahra holds a First Class BSc in Biomedical Science and is a UCL Academic Merit Scholarship recipient in Advanced Biomedical Imaging having worked on new software to aid early lung cancer detection. While she was at university, she became a self-taught data scientist and programmer as well as a volunteer Business Intelligence Data Analyst within the NHS. Since graduating, she has worked with organisations like M&C Saatchi, Nesta and Tech Nation on their data policies and innovation tools. Sahra is a high achiever and has been able to turn her academic experiences, including a research project on the experiences of farmers in dry areas in Somalia, to good use in her business.
As a member of the African diaspora and a Muslim woman, Sahra expressed that she continually found it difficult to find an understanding and representative community in her professional career. Drawn to social entrepreneurship and seeking organisations that could help her better produce social impact through her product-based business, Sahra naturally applied to our BAME Female Founders Incubator.
When she joined Sahra was selling her product very organically to family members, friends of friends and through her personal network. The programme gave her the confidence to build a brand around her product. She had the chance to pitch it multiple time at Academy London (google space for learning) and at eBay, giving her the opportunity to present her business to experts in her field.
Since leaving the program, Sahra has attended several in-person sales exhibitions as a vendor for the first time and has officially launched her brand online. We helped her being featured on BBC Radio London, and we matched her with a former Boots beauty director to help her get her products in those and many other physical and online retail stores. There are many great things coming up for SkinMama in the coming months, but more than that, we’re excited about the future Sahra is creating in Somalia through her beauty brand.