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Stockholm to Stanford: Kudu Cosmetica

I recently had the pleasure of trying out the KUDU Squalane cream and I must say – the results were astounding! We caught up with the Stanford-based mama, Angelica Wessel to chat about her exciting adventures that led to the birth of KUDU.

Tell us about yourself.

I moved from Stockholm, Sweden to Cape Town 13 years ago after an amazing holiday spent in the Cape. I planned to spend 6 months but never left! I love life here, the people I’ve met and the place that is South Africa. I worked as a fashion stylist in Europe and continued on in Cape Town, opening a photographic studio in the city. I enjoyed the creative process and the ever-changing environment my work presented. I met my husband Barry and when we found out we were expecting we made the bold move to leave town and head for the country. We ended up in a little village called Stanford.

Tell us about your family.

We’re a family of five. All boys except for myself which can be interesting at times but always a lot of fun! We have three sons, Caesar, 12, Hunter, 6 and Sacha, 3. My husband Barry is an artist which is great as we are both flexible regards spending time with the kids. Living in a village is great. The boys walk to the school every morning, play football on the common with friends, ride bikes and skateboard in the afternoon. There is a lot of exploring for the boys, swimming in the river and in the summer we can cruise on a boat towards the lagoon near Hermanus. It really is a great way to watch kids grow up and I love them spending so much time outdoors.

∇  Tell us about Kudu.

We make natural skin care products. Our ingredients are naturally derived from certified organic, ethically wild-crafted or bio-dynamic origins with proven efficacy and rejuvenating properties. Our products are free from harmful chemicals. There are no artificial fragrances, unnecessary additives or photosensitizing essential oils to be found in the range (not all naturals are good for you skin). We source most of our botanical oils and bio-active extracts in Southern Africa supporting local communities and sustainability. Kudu’s products are handcrafted in micro-batches to ensure purity and quality.

Clean and fresh is our motto! Natural ingredients formulated in an enlightened and intelligent manner.


I was first introduced to natural skincare while studying in Italy. Having grown up in a cold Scandinavian climate I struggled with dry and sensitive skin. Over the years I created my own remedies and experimented with natural ingredients. Upon moving to South Africa I discovered and started researching the powerful and amazing healing botanicals found in Southern Africa. I developed my first Kudu product while pregnant with my third son. Through my pregnancy I was able to test and experiment with different ingredients to hydrate, firm and tone my skin. My Body Toning Oil for pregnancy worked really well for me and my skin felt great. A few friends tried it and loved it. From there I began to develop other products, consulting dermatologists and worked with pharmacists along the way. I really enjoy running a multifaceted business. Every day is different and the challenges diverse. I enjoy the practice of alchemy most though, the mixing and the formulating and getting a product right.

What inspires you?

A new movement towards sustainability, respect for ourselves and our environment. There are so many good, like-minded people with smaller businesses that are all moving together in the right direction from fashion to food production, skin care to architecture, people are making a difference. All of this and my kids of course inspire me!

What has been the best and worst part of you entrepreneurial journey?

Balancing family life and work has been the most challenging aspect of starting my own business. I often find myself working late after putting the boys to bed as there is not enough time in the day to get what I need done. The best part of the journey is how I come to realise how much I have grown and developed along with my business.

Visit the website HERE and follow Kudu on Instagram

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