Wednesday, July 18, 2012

THE STORY OF Tara Fela-Durotoye

Tara Fela-Durotoye (born March 6, 1977)[1] is a Nigerian makeup artist and lawyer. A pioneer in the bridal makeup profession in Nigeria, She launched the first bridal directory in 1999, set up international standard makeup studio, and established the first makeup school in Nigeria.

She is the founder and current CEO of House of Tara International[2] the creator of the Tara Orekelewa Beauty range, Inspired Perfume and the H.I.P Beauty range.

In 2007, She was awarded the Africa SMME Award and the Entrepreneur award in South Africa.
 Tara Fela-Durotoye.

Early life

Tara Fela-Durotoye was born at St. Nicholas Hospital, Lagos, the daughter of Mr John Ejegi Sagay, a commissioner at the Federal Civil Service, Nigeria and Mrs Felicia Omaghomi. The Couple separated when She was eight months old; born into a polygamous home, she was brought up by her father's wife Mrs Modupe Agnes Sagay. She started her education at Command Children School, Victoria Island and proceeded to Nigeria Navy Secondary School, Ojo, where she was a boarder. In form 5, she was made the Sanitary and Welfare Prefect. She graduated from the Lagos State University, with a degree in Law and proceeded to fully establish the beauty Company, House of Tara International.

She is married to Fela Durotoye, a Prolific Business Strategist and Corporate Activator; Chief Executive Officer of Visible Impact and blessed with three sons, Mobolurin, Demilade & Morolaoluwa.

Contributions & Achievements

Over the past 12 years, Mrs Tara Fela-Durotoye has been dedicated to realising her vision of building a globally respected beauty company of African origin.

Tara is the Managing Director and Creative Director of HOUSE OF TARA INTERNATIONAL, a leading player in the make-up sector of Nigeria's beauty industry. The organisation has grown into a franchise enterprise with three main lines of business namely The Make-up Studio, The Makeup School and the TARA product line comprising beauty products and professional make-up kits.

Tara is widely considered as a veteran in the beauty industry, who has pioneered the bridal make up profession in Nigeria, starting her make-up business whilst an undergraduate in the Faculty of Law, Lagos State University.

Tara is a trained and certified make-up artist of Charles Fox, Convent Garden, London. In a series of first, she launched her bridal make-up business in 1998. Thereafter, she launched the first Bridal directory in Nigeria in 1999. In 2000, Tara facilitated the first-ever series of Bridal seminars, drawing for the first time-ever in Nigeria celebrated professionals in the bridal industry to speak to brides.

She has franchise spread across Nigeria (branches in Lagos, Ibadan, Port-Harcourt and Abuja) and with emerging footprint on the West African coastal countries of Cotonou, Ghana and Senegal.

She established the country's first make up school in 2004, and also launched the TARA product line comprising a range of professional tool kits (such as make-up boxes, brushes and purses) for make-up artists and a wide range of make-up products including eye shadows, eye liner, lip gloss, foundation and powders on a brand platform promoting ethics and ethnicity, by empowering young women for economic independence without moral compromise, just as it flies the proudly Nigerian flag.

In 2008, at a record-setting celebration of her tenth anniversary in Lagos, she surprised the nation with the launch of her first perfume fragrance aptly called "Be Inspired".

She is a highly sought after speaker at entrepreneurial platforms including conferences, TV programmes, newspaper and magazine publications and electronic media platforms. She is a favourite speaker at women business conferences, youth empowerment seminars and faith-based gatherings where she speaks on topics ranging from finding your purpose, identifying your talent, building and managing businesses, maintaining a successful career and marriage.

She is also a mentor for make-up artists and small business owners. Through her make-up school, Tara has developed and trained about 300 make-up artists who are now active players in Nigerian beauty industry. She has also succeeded in empowering over 600young ladies (most of who are in the tertiary institutions) with the Tara Orekelewa beauty representatives' initiative that makes them financially independent, improving their self esteem while building their marketing and entrepreneurial skills.


Some of Tara's many national and international awards include:

  • Entrepreneur of the Year (The Future Awards)
  • Young Person of the Year 2007 (The Future Awards)
  • Best Makeup Artist (Fashion and Style magazine)
  • Award for Excellence in the Beauty Sector 2006(City People magazine)
  • Pioneer Award for Beauty 2006. (Fashion and Style Award)
  • Young Entrepreneur of the Year (Lagos Enterprise Award)
  • Wedding Planner Honorary award for mentoring other make artists, January 2008
  • Award for excellence (beauty), city people
  • 1st lady award for Women empowerment

Under her leadership, House of Tara International has won several awards including

  • Right Vision Movement Award Creativity & Productivity Make over Outlet of the year 2006.
  • The Africa SMME Award presented in South Africa and the Entrepreneur of the Year award.2007
  • Creative business award of the year, success digest 2008

She is presently working on her book How to Turn Your Hobby into a Thriving Business.

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