Professional tennis player Naomi Osaka has announced NIL brand partnerships with five Black athletes to help educate communities of color about the importance of protecting melanated skin. Her functional suncare brand KINLÒ will see Deja Kelly, the University of North Carolina (basketball); Reilyn Turner, UCLA (soccer); Robert Dillingham, University of Kentucky (basketball); Xolani Hodel, Stanford University (beach volleyball); and Ziyah Holman, University of Michigan (track and field) as ambassadors.
Yesterday (Aug. 15), BusinessWire shared a press release announcing the inaugural #GlowOutside social campaign with the NCAA athletes. Through fun and creative posts, the five will show how KINLÒ products can and should be used as protection against sun damage. They will also be advocates for preventative sun care and educate people with melanated skin. Osaka, the founder of KINLÒ, shared her enthusiasm for the start of the campaign: “I’m so excited to partner with these amazing student-athletes to help spread awareness for our Glow Outside campaign.” She continued, “As young, influential voices in the space, they are the perfect fit to help champion such an important initiative and as a brand, we couldn’t be prouder to empower and support NCAA athletes.”
Reps for the brand also discussed what helped them select the five student-athletes. When speaking of Kelly, they said she had already been using her platform to inspire young women in business and athletics. Kelly was just as motivated to partner with KINLÒ. “Having the opportunity [to] lock arms with a cultural icon like Naomi is an honor in and of itself. But to pair that with a product that is so useful for people who look like me made this partnership a no-brainer,” she said.
Dillingham is also looking forward to the project. “I’m truly honored to partner with Naomi and be part of this campaign. For me, NIL is about building authentic partnerships with brands that stand for things that I care about — KINLÒ’s mission is a perfect example of that, and Naomi is someone I respect as an athlete and individual,” the basketball player shared. KINLÒ recently expanded to Walmart in April.