Hollywood’s leading ladies turn to Arab designers on the Oscars’ red carpet

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Zoey Deutch arrives at the Oscars on Sunday, March 4, 2018, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (AP)
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Zoey Deutch arrives at the Oscars on Sunday, March 4, 2018, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (AFP)
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Helen Mirren arrives at the Oscars on Sunday, March 4, 2018, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (AFP)
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Allison Janney poses in the press room with the Oscar for best supporting actress during the 90th Annual Academy Awards on March 4, 2018, in Hollywood, California. (AFP)
Updated 05 March 2018
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Hollywood’s leading ladies turn to Arab designers on the Oscars’ red carpet

DUBAI: Hollywood’s leading women turned to a host of Middle Eastern designers in order to dazzle on the film industry’s biggest night, the Academy Awards, on Sunday night.
“Vampire Academy” actress Zoey Deutch wore a stunning Elie Saab gown in lilac. The teared, beaded dress was given an envelope-pushing edge due to its sheer skirt and the star completed the look with side swept hair and red-hued make-up.
Allison Janney — who took home the Oscar as expected for best supporting actress for her searing portrayal of figure skater Tonya Harding’s mom LaVona in the biopic “I, Tonya” — looked ready for her close-up.
The statuesque actress was red-hot in a show-stopping fire engine red Reem Acra gown with flowing sleeves, a plunging neckline — and plenty of diamonds to fill the gap.
Acra also dressed Helen Mirren, outfitting her in a head-to-toe blue gown which was accented by a show-stopping sapphire and diamond necklace.
Lebanese designer Zuhair Murad was behind the ballroom-ready ball gown worn by “Deepwater Horizon” actress Gina Rodriguez. The expertly-structured soft pink dress was delicately embellished and synched in at the waist with a belt.
However, none of these red carpet wonders made headlines in the same way that a twice-worn dress did. Comedian and actress Tiffany Haddish strode on stage in a $4,000 white Alexander McQueen dress she’s worn publicly at least two other times, widely considered a faux pas in Hollywood, spawning a flurry of amused reports. Haddish wore the dress at the premiere of “Girls Trip” in July. She wore it again during her stint as host of “Saturday Night Live” in November — and dedicated half her opening monologue to it.
“My whole team told me, ‘Tiffany, you cannot wear that dress on ‘SNL,’ you already wore it. It’s taboo to wear it twice,” Haddish said on “Saturday Night Live,” she said in the monologue.
“I said, ‘I don’t give a dang about no taboo, I spent a lot of money on this dress,’” Haddish said. “This dress cost way more than my mortgage.”
(With AFP and AP)


Muse: Life lessons from Instagram sensation Amena Khan

Updated 24 September 2018
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Muse: Life lessons from Instagram sensation Amena Khan

  • Amena Khan is making a name for herself on Instagram
  • She talks candidly about her struggle to the top as a hijab-wearing influencer

DUBAI: The British blogger talks candidly about her struggle to the top as one of the first hijab-wearing influencers in the UK.

As a child, I was inspired by the arts and entertainment — it was a form of escapism for me. Somewhere around my teens, the penny dropped, and I realized there weren’t very many brown faces on TV, so it probably wouldn’t be financially smart for me to study journalism, or media or acting.

When I started out, I heard insiders in the beauty industry say there was no place for a hijabi, that it was too divisive of a symbol and that I should just give it up. But I didn’t – I’m proud of being the first woman of color in a hijab to be in mainstream beauty campaigns across television, magazines and billboards. Seeing my dream materialize was like seeing the power of passion, perseverance, struggle, creativity and positive thinking.

I think that there are a lot of misconceptions tied to the hijab as it makes you visibly Muslim, and because most of the media representation is negative, it rubs off on people.

The cause that I believe in – which is freedom of choice for everyone — benefits everyone because we are all objectified. It’s this journey that all women are on and it’s this journey that binds us, so we have to find a way to accept people for who they are instead of trying to control, manipulate and force women into being what we want them to be.

My focus has become more inclusive. I personally have become more inclined toward fostering an environment where women feel safe to express themselves however they want.

In regards to online negativity, I think dealing with it, you need a really strong support system, and really thick skin and you have to really know who you are and stick to it.

I once got a doll that looked like a voodoo doll and I don’t think it was, but I was too afraid to even touch it.

For me, simply existing within a sphere where beauty is currency as a woman of color who is identifiably Muslim is groundbreaking, it’s revolutionary. For me, to thrive in this space and make the relationships that I’ve made with big brands is testament to the fact that there is a space for us. This is not just a space where I have fun with make-up. I want my presence to stand for something.