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From Flipping Burgers at McDonalds to Pioneering Cosmetic Surgery in Nigeria! Modupe Ozolua talks to ELLE on Making Things Happen



Modupe Ozolua - BellaNaija - August2015As South Africa celebrates Women’s Month this August, ELLE SA has launched a new feature – #MakeItHappen – profiling inspiring women making huge waves in Africa.

In a recent feature, they have a chat with Nigerian-American businesswoman and cosmetic surgery philanthropist, Modupe Ozolua on how she moved from flipping burgers at McDonalds to living out her vision of becoming an entrepreneur and being a pioneer in body enhancement in Nigeria and ultimately Africa and beyond.

The 41-year-old philanthropist, who has been offering Nigerians cosmetic and reconstructive surgery alternatives since 2001 with her brand – Body Enhancement Ltd., also juggles charitable work via her Body Enhancement Foundation (formerly BEARS), rehabilitating women and children displaced by terrorist group – Boko Haram, and other humanitarian activities.

Read excerpts from her interview with ELLE below;

On her very first job
I worked making burgers at McDonalds in Natick, Massachusetts (USA) when I was 17 years old.

In an interview with Punch in July, she told the publication how working at the fast food chain restaurant helped her imbibe virtues of hard work and dedication.

How she got to be where she is now
I am a social entrepreneur. I have been an entrepreneur since I was 21 years old in the United States. In 2001, I pioneered cosmetic surgery in Nigeria, which gave me access to underprivileged people that required reconstructive surgery but couldn’t afford to pay for it and weren’t receiving financial assistance to pay for their procedures.

This disturbed me so greatly that, in 2003, I founded a non-profit organisation, Empower54, which was dedicated to providing desperately needed humanitarian assistance, such as medical missions and hunger eradication, along with a variety of educational, women/girl empowerment and refugee programs for underprivileged Africans.

Some of our out-reach programs include donations of clothing and toys to underprivileged Africans both in remote communities and refugee camps. Desmond Tutu is our patron.

What she wanted to be as a little girl
A fashion designer

What the theme – #MakeItHappen means to her
It reaffirms the fact that I can achieve every and anything to which I apply myself.

To read more form her interview with ELLE SA, click here.

Photo Credit:

Jennifer is the Beauty Editor & Style Representative of Get in touch - Send an email to: beauty(at) or style(at) | Follow us on Instagram: @bellanaijabeauty OR @bellanaijastyle | Follow us on Twitter: @bellanaijastyle


  1. Lorraine Welch

    August 20, 2015 at 8:18 am

    Amazing Post!!!!!

  2. Vortex

    August 20, 2015 at 8:46 am

    Beautiful, inspiring woman.

  3. Zeal

    August 20, 2015 at 9:03 am

    This woman has and deserves lots of awards. She is doing so many great philanthropy works that go unrecognized

    • Anon2

      August 20, 2015 at 2:03 pm

      YES!! If you follow her on Facebook you will see all the amazing job she does that goes unrecognized. You see some of our celebrity manages to help an orphanage or the likes and they propagate it like there is no tomorrow. This woman is going around lending help to communities. I must say I am amazed at her good works.

      Now that is a beautiful heart coupled with a good head of beauty.

  4. Ehi

    August 20, 2015 at 9:04 am

    Gorgeous. Those brows though …

    • Hian

      August 20, 2015 at 9:53 am

      Which brows?! They’ve come again. Clique of those always seeking what is “imperfect” in others. Phew

    • Oyindee

      August 20, 2015 at 11:33 am

      Calm down tigress!she hasn’t said anything bad now….

  5. ChiChiChilolo

    August 20, 2015 at 10:54 am

    And so is life. Good to see women inspiring people.

  6. amh

    August 20, 2015 at 12:57 pm

    Beautiful one.

  7. Krasavitsa

    August 20, 2015 at 4:20 pm

    Ok I’ve tried for long, really long to understand this statement “pioneered cosmetic surgery in Nigeria” (call me an olodo if you must. I’ll have you know that I’m not one! Ok maybe in this case I am……….). Does it mean she performed the 1st cosmetic surgery ever (which will be really strange not to mention illegal considering the fact that she’s not a Dr. ) or she was the 1st Nigerian to ever undergo one? Just really curious about this.

    • nunulicious

      August 20, 2015 at 6:28 pm

      i think it means her company was the first to offer cosmetic surgery in Nigeria. She used to have foreign surgeons come in and do the procedure locally as opposed to people travelling abroad to do it then.

    • Krasavitsa

      August 20, 2015 at 7:27 pm

      Ahhhh………… Ok. Now that makes sense. Thanks!

  8. empress kingdom

    May 2, 2017 at 8:15 pm

    pls how can i get in touch to mrs modupe ozouola, pls my drop ur nomba

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