Make-up artist Samira Olfat talks Oprah, social media and Harleys

The UAE-based Iranian makeup artist and MaxFactor ambassador talks Oprah, social media and Harleys. (Supplied)
Updated 15 May 2018
0

Make-up artist Samira Olfat talks Oprah, social media and Harleys

Make-up artist Samira Olfat spoke to Arab News on the sidelines of Beautyworld Middle East and revealed that she loves motorbikes, champions social media and is a big believer in the power of women...

One of my biggest idols is Oprah. Sometimes people blame the family they were born into for their failure to achieve their dreams — but that’s not the case, and Oprah’s a great example of that. If you read about where she came from, and the things that happened to her, then look at where she is today — the most powerful woman in the world.

I believe you need to have a healthy body to be able to achieve what you want. So I love doing yoga and pilates; I love working out and meditating.

People think that I’m very girly, because I’m always in heels, always wearing dresses. But I have a tomboy side as well. I used to ride a Harley around. It was pretty fun, but pretty scary too. I ordered it customized — full matt-black. I had long braids coming out of my helmet, so it was obvious I was a girl. It was a bit intimidating for people, I think.

Social media is so important right now. It’s as important as the real job. There are (amazing) professionals I’ve known for the past 15 years who, because they don’t have a very strong platform on social media, don’t get credit. Before, people would get to know you through word of mouth, because your work was good. Now, you can be the most amazing makeup artist in the world, but if you don’t have a lot of Instagram followers, then no magazine’s going to come and interview you.

So many women still have to prove themselves to people who don’t believe in them. Honestly? Look around you. Look at these women who are CEOs and mothers, handling several jobs in one day. Looking after a home is a full-time job. Being a mother is a full-time job. Being a CEO — or an employee — is a full-time job. Women can handle several jobs at the same time, and usually they’re only being paid for one. What more do people want?

Women are so often labelled ‘emotional,’ like that’s a negative thing. But if you’re not emotionally smart, then you can’t handle a company as well. If you look at companies where a woman is the boss, the energy is so much better. It’s so much happier.


What We Are Reading Today: Leadership and the Rise of Great Powers by Yan Xuetong

Updated 25 March 2019
0

What We Are Reading Today: Leadership and the Rise of Great Powers by Yan Xuetong

  • Yan shows how rising states like China transform the international order by reshaping power distribution and norms

While work in international relations has closely examined the decline of great powers, not much attention has been paid to the question of their rise. The upward trajectory of China is a particularly puzzling case. How has it grown increasingly important in the world arena while lagging behind the US and its allies across certain sectors? 

Borrowing ideas of political determinism from ancient Chinese philosophers, Leadership and the Rise of Great Powers explains China’s expanding influence by presenting a moral-realist theory that attributes the rise and fall of nations to political leadership. Yan Xuetong shows that the stronger a rising state’s political leadership, the more likely it is to displace a prevailing state in the international system. 

Yan defines political leadership through the lens of morality, specifically the ability of a government to fulfill its domestic responsibility and maintain international strategic credibility. Examining leadership at the personal, national, and international levels. 

Yan shows how rising states like China transform the international order by reshaping power distribution and norms. Yan also considers the reasons for America’s diminishing international stature even as its economy, education system, military, political institutions, and technology hold steady. The polarization of China and the US will not result in another Cold War scenario, but their mutual distrust will ultimately drive the world center from Europe to East Asia.