Join Africa's fastest growing career community!


Olamide Olowe, the Youngest Black Woman to Secure Startup Funding of Over $10 Million for Her Skincare Company, Topicals 

Olamide Olowe, Topicals CEO and Founder is redefining the beauty industry norms when it comes to skincare. Read more on how she became the youngest black woman in history to secure over $10 million in startup funding.

Article Preview Image

Olamide Olowe, Topicals CEO and Founder is redefining the beauty industry norms when it comes to skincare. Read more on how she became the youngest black woman in history to secure over $10 million in startup funding.


We love to see black women thriving and Olamide Olowe is no exception. You may be asking yourself what she has done and why you should care. Well, Olamide has made history as the youngest black woman to raise more than $10 million in startup funding for her skincare company, Topicals from CAVU Consumer Partners. With celebrity investors like Issa Rae, Yvonne Orji, Kelly Rowland, and Gabrielle Union, you can be sure they believe in her company and it offers significant value for its customers. Not to mention Olamide Olowe landed on the Forbes 30 under 30 list in 2022 due to the immense success of the company under her leadership.

Topicals skincare was launched in 2020 and has achieved many milestones since then from getting a huge chunk of venture capital funding to generating up to three times its typical revenue in the last year. This isn’t hard to imagine considering Topicals has sold a product every minute from 2021 to 2022. Clearly, inclusive skincare is where it’s at.

What Topicals Skincare is all about

Olamide is passionate about storytelling and places this element at the very core of what Topicals skincare does. For decades, the media has been preaching that we have to subscribe to certain beauty standards when it comes to body size, skin type, and hair texture, but this has been rapidly changing over the past decade. 

Topicals skincare was built off of that by helping people embrace and accept skin flare-ups and have a good time taking care of themselves. The company aims to eliminate the stigma associated with skincare conditions in a world where millions of people suffer from chronic skin care conditions. It has reinvented the way people can address skin flare-ups by developing products with herbals and ingredients scientifically proven to be effective by peer-reviewed, third-party clinical studies. 

The 26-year-old CEO’s goal has always been the creation of effective, inclusive skincare products to suit people of all skin types. Having spent the better part of her childhood experiencing skin issues like post barbae folliculitis and hyperpigmentation, Olamide found it rewarding to see more people sharing their skincare journeys in a positive light. 

Not only is Topicals an impressive skincare company, it is also a vital role player when it comes to mental health advocacy by helping marginalized women feel more comfortable in their own skin. Topicals skincare products have been reviewed by post-doctoral fellows and dermatologists so they have been scientifically proven to be effective in dealing with various skincare problems. 

The products range from hyperpigmentation bundles to clearing and brightening serums; plus they are free from animal testing and any dyes so you know they’re the real deal. The company’s marketing and branding strategy appeal to Gen Z, which is evident through its Instagram and TikTok marketing, reaching millions of young people. 

When it comes to their packaging, Topicals takes on a fresh new take with a unique colour palette of pink, yellow, and orange. Definitely a shift from the clinical and minimalistic white aesthetic we’re used to with most skincare products so it’s a good time from the moment you lay your eyes on the Topicals product. 




Gaining startup funding

In August 2020, Topicals raised $2.6 million in startup funding, making Olamide the youngest black woman ever to raise over $1 million in venture funding at 24 years old. This initial funding allowed the company to grow and keep up with client demands. 

Topicals intends to use this recent Series A round of $10 million in startup funding from CAVU Consumer Partners to help the brand grow by expanding on talent acquisition and marketing awareness. 

In a statement by CAVU Consumer Partners, Jenna Jackson, Principal of Growth stated, “Through Topicals, we believe Olamide has set a new standard in beauty - not only by formulating and marketing effectively over-the-counter replacement products for skincare - but also by destigmatizing how consumers speak about their skin conditions.”


Read also: These African Tech Startups Crossed the $1 Billion Mark in Funding (They Should be on Your Radar) 


Topicals role in promoting mental health awareness

Topicals also donates a portion of its profits to mental health organizations to promote awareness on the link between skincare health and mental health. Olamide wanted to develop a comprehensive brand outside of its products since there is a significant correlation between chronic skin conditions and mental health. 

This is why the company has donated over $50,000 to mental health organizations to contribute to that conversation and support nonprofits that provide mental health resources to marginalized communities. Topicals also plan to launch a 12-month accelerator program supporting nonprofits in the mental health space with business advisory, mentorship, and leadership training. 

By challenging industry norms and redefining what beauty companies deem is “perfect skin” Olamide is driving positive change in skincare and hopefully more companies will follow suit. I don’t know about you, but I, for one, am excited to see what’s next for Olamide on her journey with Topicals. 

Written by

Sandra Musonge

Sandra Musonge is a part-time writer at Fuzu with over five years of experience under her belt, helping numerous B2B and B2C clients with their content needs. She writes to inspire and not just to inform. Her educational background in Biochemistry has given her a broad base from which to approach many topics. You can find her enjoying nature or trying out new recipes when she isn't writing.

Give a like!


Sign in to read comments and engage with the Fuzu community.

Login or Create a Free Account