Obsessed With Oyin! 10 Reasons I ADORE Baltimore’s Own Hair & Beauty Brand

Oyin Handmade has established itself as one of the highest quality, most desirable, just all around cool independent hair and body care brands in the business. I’ve been hearing amazing things about Oyin since at least 2006 — did you know that the brand began 13 years ago? Yep,  it’s been over a decade since the world discovered Frank Juice and Greg Juice, Funk Butter and Whipped Pudding, and that incredible Honey Hemp conditioner.


Over the years, social media has brought me closer to the Bennus as a family. Through a network of amazing mutual friends, I’ve come to know Jamyla well, to love what the brand stands for, and to recognize why Ebony Magazine would name them one of The Coolest Black Families in America. Oyin is an incredible brand because it is the brainchild of rebels, artists and entrepreneurs who live their lives by daring to ask the question, “why not?” Oyin is a brand that’s proven to have staying power in a fickle market of natural hair and body care by always creating products that are high quality and worth the money. And now Oyin  – Baltimore’s own funky indie brand that could – is selling like hotcakes at select Target stores across the country. I couldn’t be happier or prouder.

I was recently interviewed by the Baltimore Sun about Jamyla, Pierre, and Oyin as a brand. The reporter came to the story with the strong impression that my relationship with Target as a member of the Target Inner Circle meant that I had something to do with Oyin landing on Target shelves. I repeatedly reiterated that this wasn’t necessarily the case. Yes, I have mentioned Oyin as a brand that could and should be at Target. But the execs there are smart and are doing a ton of research before deciding which multicultural brand has got next. I’m sure my two cents on the brand may have just confirmed a decision that was already in the works, if anything at all. Talking to the reporter about Oyin made me think about the brand in a holistic way. Just what IS it that I love about Oyin? Let me break it all the way down. Here are 10 reasons I’m obsessed with Oyin!

1 – Because they’ve got that honey love. “Oyin” is the Yoruba word for honey, and honey is an ingredient in SO many of Oyin’s top products. Honey is a humectant. It imparts incredible, penetrating moisture to skin and to hair – especially natural hair drinks it on up.  Just about every Oyin product has worked well for my hair and skin because they use ingredients that my hair and skin crave.

2 – Because the whole aesthetic of the brand is bright, cheerful, cute and accessible. Long before I even tried Oyin, I loved their website and their packaging. The brand wasn’t created by a bunch of suits in a research lab, it was created by two thinkers and creators who could see for themselves what the game was missing. The concepts all come from the same, genuine place and you can see that when you look at their products.

3 – Because their factory is filled with reminders like this.

20140331_113056_resized - 20140421_111144

It’s so true. Oyin itself is a realized dream, and proof that your dreams can be realized if you work hard and create the right team around you.

4 – Because their Honey Hemp Conditioner is the BUSINESS for dry, natural, coily, curly hair. THE BUSINESS. 

5 – Because my hair is so in love with Hair Dew.


Especially now, spring into summer when the temperatures get hotter? YES. Hair Dew applied to my wet, freshly detangled hair makes my curls pop and my hair feel super soft.

6 – Because the Oyin Target launch party in Baltimore was one of the most FUN hair or beauty events that I’ve ever been to. The music was jammin’. The food was incredible.


Serving up lobster mac and cheese goodness!



The whole scene was swanky, elegant, chic and funky – everything you’d imagine it to be! Check out Luvvie’s recap on it. We had the BEST time!

7 – Because Pierre and Jamyla can do this. 

Name another couple that’s created a beauty brand that’s AS COOL as them. I’ll wait. If I had those moves, I’d be dancing down the street right now.

8 – Because besides being a co-creator of Oyin, Pierre is an artist, an author, a video director. Basically anything dope and creative and on that black nerd genius tip, he’s got the corner on it. His artwork is in museums.

Artwork by Pierre Bennu

Artwork by Pierre Bennu

Art by Pierre Bennu

Art by Pierre Bennu

He directed the video for Gregory Porter’s Be Good and the oversize instrument props are located throughout Oyin HQ.

Created by Pierre Bennu

paper bass made by dirk joseph http://aziarts.com

 Pierre is lowkey about it but he’s a genius on a few levels and him and Jamyla make an amazing couple. They’re so in sync, and such genuinely awesome parents. 

9 – Because Boing.


Such a great hair product, such a great NAME for a curly hair product. My hair really loves Boing when I keep it short and sassy.

10 – Because the sky’s the limit for the Bennus and for Oyin. Now some of their most popular products are at select Target stores – click here to find one near you! I love that more and more people will discover Oyin through this partnership, and this will help a little independent brand that’s proven their worth GROW as they deserve to. What’s next for Oyin and the Bennus? Whatever they want to do. And that’s a beautiful dream to aspire to.

Afrobella Bennus Oyin

Click here to find Oyin at a Target near you, and click here to buy direct from the Oyin Handmade website – many of their body and hair products are available here but not at Target stores, so check them all out!

Click here to check out Oyin Handmade on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram - and if you’re in Baltimore on a Saturday, check out the Oyin Handmade store! Much love to the Bennus, always!

What are YOUR favorite Oyin Handmade products?

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  1. Haven’t seen it in Target in my area, yet. (Springfield/Holyoke, Massachusetts) Hopefully one of these days.

  2. Whipped Pudding is my all time favorite…but I love so many of their products. Glad I live in Baltimore, but so glad that others can get their hands on the Oyin goodies!

  3. The Hair Dew and the Burnt Sugar Pomade are in regular rotation for me. My hair loves them! I live in DC and only one Whole Foods in the area carries the products. The one on P Street, NW if anyone is interested. Haven’t seen the products in any local Target stores yet in the DMV.

  4. I am from Baltimore originally and was not familiar with these products. Thanks for the post, I will have to search for them!

  5. I fell in love with this line and the couple behind the brand back in the Nappurality days! I’ve always been a silent cheerleader of theirs and I am proud and inspired.

  6. I just started to use their Honey Hemp conditioner..LOVE it!! It’s a breeze to detangle with and I also like it as a refresher leave-in. Awesome feature on the Bennus Patrice!

  7. Thanks to you, and this post, I ordered the Oyin “Snack Bar” to give their products a try, before purchasing full size products…. LOVE, LOVE LOVE me some “Boing”, “Greg Juice”, “Hair Juice” and “Shine and Define”!!! Where have these products been all of my life, lol? After the harsh winter we just had in the Chi– my hair was in desperate need of some love and care. Oyin products did the job and then some!! I thought I was going to have to do a “big chop” ’cause of the dryness and damage my hair suffered this past winter– but NOPE! It’s all good!

    I love their packaging, philosophy, and everything about them. I’m now a customer for life, and also my naturalista daughter. who tried the samples as well (Brown Sugar Pomade is her fav!). Mucho gracias to you Afrobella for sharing and caring… If I hadn’t read your post– I wouldn’t have ordered the kit…

  8. Lauren says:

    I have been an Oyin devotee for years (the Honey Hemp conditioner resurrected my hair), and now that I know that Pierre Bennu directed Gregory Foster’s video, I am ALL the way gone…

  9. I haven’t noticed Oyin products before, the next time I go to Target I will see if it’s there.

  10. I think that the best thing about Oyin is that they understand truly what they’re doing. They’re unlike the other hair product companies that just mass create shampoos and hair products full of chemicals without even understanding the totality of their target demographic. I completely understand why you’re obsessed with this product. It also belongs to such creative people, and it is truly a realized dream.

  11. Love the burnt sugar promade. And their products are so unique and wonderful. They are so way ahead of their time with products with so few chemicals.

    • Naturally Minded Consumer says:

      I’m happy for this couple’s success but as a former natural body product maker/seller I do get upset when I see products touted as “natural” that contain synthetic fragrances (known endocrine disruptors) and other not-found-in-your-kitchen ingredients. The shampoo bar? “purified water, glycerin, sodium stearate and sodium oleate (mild foaming/cleansing agents derived from vegetable oils), sorbitol, stearic acid, lauric acid, african black soap, cocoa butter, shea butter, cetyl alcohol, coconut oil, lavender, rosemary & citrus oils” Soap can be made without such additives if it is truly homemade. What this ingredient list says to me is a purchased melt and pour base to which they have added some custom ingredients. : (

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