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Sandra Mwiihangele is the Founder of Kiyomisandz Beauty Products, a cosmetic and toiletry manufacturing company based in Namibia’s capital, Windhoek. It’s wonderful enough that Sandra is on the 2017 Forbes Africa 30 under 30 list but there are many more reasons she’s got us drooling.

Her resolve to succeed is palpable

There are so many women who claim to be determined to succeed but only a number of them truly are.  Sandra Mwiihangele is one determined young lady. All you need to do is to visit her Instagram page and her bio alone introduces her. The line we love most? ‘Bbuilding my award winning @kiyomisandz empire one day at a time.’

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She doesn’t allow anyone belittle her.

As a young girl Sandra Mwiihangele struggled with her speech and shyness. She was always stuttering and other children made fun of her all the time. She got tired of being a laughing stock and taught herself how to speak properly. The result? In 2000, by the age of 11, she won the gold medal at the Namibian Expo of Young Scientists competition for developing a high-performance matte lipstick. She later won bronze in South Africa against the whole continent. A shy girl could really not have achieved that you know.

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She understands the power of starting small

During her final year at the University, studying Analytical Chemistry at the Cape Peninsula University of Technology in Cape Town, she had to complete a 12-month in-service training at an analytical lab. Although her salary was small, she managed to save and return home to Namibia to set up a cosmetic manufacturing company and with R20,000 ($1,500) in hand she founded Kiyomisandz. Now, the company manufactures its own products and offers contract manufacturing services to people who want to make their own.