How the Most Popular Influencers in South Africa Make Money

Most Popular Influencers in South Africa

Influencers build impactful relationships with followers and brands. As the most popular influencers in South Africa, they can boost and secure the success of brands they like and share values with, while earning an income. 

Most Popular Influencers in South Africa – content creators, first and foremost,  consistently connect with followers. 

They clearly articulate their values and stay loyal to their brands. With long-term goals in mind, they sustain sincere, brand-influencer relationships.

Influencer marketing is undeniably essential for brands globally and many content creating influencers make a good living. 

The art of becoming an influencer is a surprisingly simple process.

Steps include consistently creating relatable content, choosing your social media platforms and connecting with other humans. Having a good bio, stats and photos, and effective communication with brands. Staying in the loop of what’s happening and know what you want to achieve. 

Find Full Beginner Steps to Become an Influencer

How much can you make as an influencer?

The income generated from social media depends on the platform, brand and industry, plus the size of your account.

Typically, non-celebrity rates can start at the lowest $75 per post, and at its highest point be $10,000 per post.

For the Top and Best Paid Instagram Stars, the rates per post are millions.  

10 Most Popular Influencers in South Africa – in no particular order 

1. Mihlali Ndamase: @mihlalii_n

Featuring on the Forbes 30 Under 30 list, and having won multiple awards for her content, Mihlali is seen as one of South Africa’s top beauty influencers and a well-respected make-up artist.

YouTube named her “Biggest Beauty YouTuber in South Africa”, and she is a brand strategist, plus co-founder of Siyasizana Foundation.

“We drive brand messages through various strategies employed through events, social media, public relations and performing arts.” – Duma Collective

Social Media Followers:

Instagram: 1.7 million 

YouTube:  385 000

TikTok: nearly 90 000

Twitter: 10 000 000

2. Anele Papu

A GQ Best Dressed, Papu is also photographer and influencer, an entrepreneur, and owner of APStudiosza. 

Brand collaborations have included Pearl Thusi, Uber, Adidas and Sportswear company.

Social Media Followers:

Instagram: 587 000

3. Seth Shezi

Also voted as Best Dressed in 2018 by GQ, Seth is also content writer and photographer, podcast personality, creative director, lifestyle brand strategist. 


Instagram: 24,700

4. Kay Ngonyama: @kay.yarms

Founder of the SA beauty company Saxx Beauty, Kay Ngonyama is a well-respected influencer, makeup artist, and vlogger.

Kay puts the glow on a broad range of brands in her popular Instagram content, and has driven valuable traffic for many brands in the beauty industry.

Her makeup tutorial videos often include affordable Pharmacy products, and can just as easily swing towards luxury products. She creates a great variety of fresh content, and always include many different brands. 

Kay Yarms has earned her income through social media and it is reported that her net worth is around $1-5 million. 

“My goal for the future is to be a role model. There are a lot of beauty standards that are being broken currently and I want to be a part of that. I’m not your cookie-cutter ‘model’ I am a dark-skinned female who’s a bit on the chubby side. I find that a lot of my followers are able to relate to that and love the fact that I don’t let that get in the way,” – Kay Ngonyama.

Social Media Followers:

Instagram: 422 000

YouTube: 242 000

Tik Tok 1 692

5. Morag Steyn: @moragsteyn

Celebrity make-up artist, Morag Steyn, is known for her professional,  innovative work ethic and is recognized, and highly regarded internationally. Apart from her make-up services to clients, she also gives virtual make-up lessons and gets booked regularly by the filming industry. 

The many celebrities she has worked with include Randeep Hooda, and Neha Kakkar, Kamal Hassan on Bigg Boss India, Atif Aslam, Radhika Madan and Ananya Birla.

Glamour Magazine described Morag as “a woman who is trailblazing the fashion and beauty industry”.

In Morag’s own words- and as seen on her Facebook Intro:

“In the business of making people look good!

Award Winning MUA


Beauty Editor”

Social Media Followers:

Facebook Followers: 1,100

Influence Co Reach: 12,300

6. Menzi Mcunu 

A Forbes 30 Under 30 Honoree, Menzi  has supreme skills in brand and image consulting, and refers to himself as “Afrocentric Gentleman” and Black Industrialist. 

Menzi was the 2017 GQ South Africa Best Dressed Man and with good reason. He is impeccable in his appearance and his Instagram followers agree.

Social Media Followers:

Instagram: 19,300

7. Vongai  Mampho: @vongai.mapho

The award-winning beauty influencer and makeup artist, Vongai, is also an  entrepreneur and her content covers hair, beauty and fashion, which she shares on her social media platforms and YouTube channel.

Her content features a broad range of 

beauty and skincare brands, which is usually very accessible. 

From Vongai  Mampho’s website:

– Dream Tresses, a custom-made hair brand that brings its customers high quality wigs, bundles and hair accessories. 

– Dream Apparel & Pants in fresh colour tones and quality fabrics.

– Makeup products to be available soon.

Social Media Followers:

YouTube Subscribers: 65 000

Instagram: 143 000

Facebook: 8 661

8. Thato “TeeKay” Mahapa 

TeeKay’s blog, about men’s clothing and lifestyle, “The Bearded Muse” offers a strong grooming, fashion and lifestyle angle. Content includes products, ideas, events, food and design. 

Mahapa was the 2017 GQ Best Dressed Reader.

“But the biggest thing is to be able to monetise your style; that means that you have to run your brand like a business. You need to be the model, creative director, accountant, copywriter, CEO, etc. all at once. It’s not the easiest thing in the world. If you’re not running your brand like that or at least similar, you’ll struggle to grow it.” – Thato “TeeKay” Mahapa.

Past brand collaborations include:

Topman, Europa Art, Johnny Walker, Absolut Elyx, Carrera Sunglasses, Spier Wines, Old Khaki, and Emporio Armani.

Social Media Followers:

Instagram: 14,200

9. Nuzhah Jacobs: @nuzhahjacobs

Nuzhah Jacobs shares inspiring, content on social media, in a creative, fresh way. She is a makeup artist, beauty content creator and entrepreneur. 

Her content is about makeup, hair, fashion, and beauty, with tips on day-to-day looks, and useful advice.

“I get inspired and excited when it comes to working with brands, whether that’s on social media, in large/small campaigns or behind the scenes. As long as authenticity, creativity and adding value is what drives us, ‘marketing’ doesn’t have to be seen as a dirty word.  

Let’s create incredible content, share stories and do great things – together” – Nuzhah Jacobs

Jacobs models for brands and she can be booked shoots, to create requested fashion-related content and lookbooks.

Social Media Followers:

Instagram: 55,000

YouTube: 12,800

10. JP Robberts

JP, nicknamed “Michael Bublé” of South Africa, is known for his roles in South African movies, International TV commercials, being a former Mr South Africa finalist, plus singing, modeling and MC work.

Social Media Followers:

Instagram: 18,400

These 10 are some of the Most Popular Influencers in South Africa  

Most Popular Influencers in South Africa
Most Popular Influencers in South Africa

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