On Monday evening, Vogue Arabia’s beauty editor Alexandra Venison took to the stage with award-winning makeup artist Mohammed Hindash, beauty entrepreneur and makeup artist Eljammi Gozalli, and leading surgeon Dr. Jaffer Khan for Vogue Loves Fashion Avenue at The Dubai Mall. Discussing the concept of beauty in the Middle East, they touched upon subjects from the growth of the industry to the importance of transparency. Weren’t there on the night? Catch up on some of the key points from the panel below.
The Rise of the Beauty Industry in the Middle East
“The beauty world has evolved here so much,” says Gozalli. “There are so many brands launching here from makeup to skincare. International brands want to come to the Middle East; this shows women here have a great interest in the industry. We see women in our training center from Jordan and Saudi Arabia. They want to learn about beauty, not just makeup.”
The Growth of Cosmetic Surgery in the Region
Dr. Khan explains, “I’ve been in Dubai for 20 years. The growth has been in tandem with my own personal growth when you are talking about the beauty industry. We just have to look around us and see how many villas [offering cosmetic surgery] have popped up on Beach Road and Al Wasl Road over the last 20 years. When I arrived here there were three plastic surgeons in Dubai, now there are 350. I came here a reconstructive surgeon doing hand surgery, burns, and trauma, and then the market forces made me move to the field of aesthetics.”
The Importance of Honesty
“Go by word of mouth, it’s a classic way of knowing if someone is good,” says Hindash on finding reputable makeup artists. “With my work, I like to provide video proof – I don’t edit my videos. You get to see what the makeup would look like in real life. I do close-up shots, I don’t blur my videos or edit them in any way. I do tutorials and tell people what you can expect the foundation to look like after an hour or five hours.” Dr. Khan adds, “Before people used to rely more on word of mouth and reputation, now there is a degree of sensitization that we all have to be aware of. With social media comes a lot of responsibility. We have to be able to portray the right information, not just information.”
The Definition of Beauty
Talking about the rise of social media, Dr. Khan explains, “Beauty is a characteristic. It could be a place, a thing, it could be a person. It is a characteristic that gives a perception of happiness or pleasure. What you’re reading on the internet, what you’re seeing on social media, it is a perception. Is it really even happening?”
On Encouraging Transparency Within the Industry
“If somebody brings in a picture of a celebrity, we will try to emulate what they want within reason and if it is technically possible. Just because somebody has high cheekbones doesn’t mean it will suit everybody. It is part of our responsibility to calm people down,” explains Dr. Khan. “In makeup, it happens a lot too,” adds Gozalli, “They bring you pictures. You have to be very diplomatic. People see so much on social media and believe that is a standard of beauty. That is why we have such a big responsibility especially with the younger generation, in particular, to show them that this is the standard of beauty, you are beautiful in your own way. You are individually beautiful.”
See the full live stream below.