Updated: May 27
As part of their ‘African Safari Promise’, professional nail brands Morgan Taylor and Gelish, as well their South African distributor, Sparkle Cosmetics, sponsored a rhino notching event at the Pilanesberg National Park on 29 March.
Sparkle invited a large contingent of beauty media and bloggers to witness the event. Said Sparkle MD, Debbie Kayle: “Morgan Taylor and Gelish’s interest in wildlife conservation was sparked during their visit to South Africa in 2017, whereupon they decided to create the African Safari Collection, which is available in Morgan Taylor Nail Lacquer, Gelish and Gelish Dip. Proceeds of the sales of this collection, both in South Africa and internationally, will go towards wildlife conservation.
“When Morgan Taylor and Gelish told us they wished to support wildlife conservation, we immediately jumped in as Sparkle likes to give back. We chose to support anti rhino-poaching not only because rhino poaching has reached crisis proportions in South Africa to the extent that rhinos are now facing extinction, but because rhino horn is made of keratin, the same substance as human nails.”
Rhino notching is a conservation method used to gather important information about rhinos. A helicopter (in this instance provided by Mankwe Game Trackers) locates a rhino and drives it to an area where it can be darted with sedative by a vet. Park ecology professionals then ‘notch’ the ears of the sedated rhino (by making unique marks and shapes on the ear-area) and the rhino’s unique DNA is collected as valuable data to help track and monitor the species. Once this is done, the vet darts the rhino with an anti-dote and it recovers immediately and is left to roam free.
When the rhino nothing process had been completed on 29 March, Sparkle invited the media and bloggers to come and actually touch the rhino. This proved to be an emotional and unforgettable experience.
As Kayle pointed out, rhino notching is a hugely expensive exercise. She emphasised that Sparkle did not want this particular rhino notching to be a once-off event and is looking to collaborate with individuals and/ or companies to possibly set up a fund for rhino notching.
In addition to launching the Morgan Taylor and Gelish African Safari Collection, Sparkle also launched the new Gelish 18G Unplugged High Performance LED Light, a battery-operated curing light that is essential for salons and nail techs to have during South Africa’s frequent power outages.
Another new launch that was announced is the manicure & pedicure kit – BareLuxury by Morgan Taylor, comprising a soak and a lotion. (Report by Joanna Sterkowicz)