Annabella Hilal boosts Beirut boutique’s profile

Annabella Hilal (Instagram)
Updated 18 March 2018

Annabella Hilal boosts Beirut boutique’s profile

DUBAI: Lebanese model and TV presenter Annabella Hilal offered an unexpected boost to the online profile of Beirut-based “concept store” One Melrose on Saturday.
Hilal, a former Miss Lebanon and Miss World contestant, posted on Instagram an image of herself at MTV Lebanon’s HQ in Beirut dressed in stunning blue-grey Herve Legere bandage dress from One Melrose which garnered over 20,000 ‘Likes’ within 24 hours.
Hilal, 31, is the host of MTV Lebanon’s “Celebrity Duets,” which finished its second season last month, with Lebanese actress Maguy Bou Ghosn claiming first place.
Hilal got her big TV break at LBC, as the anchor and presenter on two shows: “Mission Fashion” and “Helwe w Murra,” before moving on to host the wildly popular talent show “Arab Idol” alongside Ahmed Fahmi on rival network MBC.
But Hilal’s talents go far beyond television. She holds a masters in law and has reportedly said that her ambition is to become a judge.
Hilal is also, according to MTV Lebanon’s website, an “emeritus lecturer in the field of Human Rights” and has given a number of talks both at home and internationally.
With over 1.8 million followers on Instagram, Hilal is one of the Arab world’s most popular TV presenters and leading social-media influencers, and her post in praise of shopping local will undoubtedly raise the profile of One Melrose — which currently has just over 5,500 Instagram followers.


Startup of the Week: Jawa 7alawa, a cruelty-free makeup brand

Photo/Supplied
Updated 04 August 2020

Startup of the Week: Jawa 7alawa, a cruelty-free makeup brand

  • Jawa 7alawa will continue to launch more makeup products in the coming months

With the plethora of make-up brands introduced onto the market over the past few years and a growing public awareness regarding the controversial testing of products on animals, young startup brands are increasingly incorporating a cruelty-free approach into their ethos.
Jawa 7alawa, a Saudi cruelty-free makeup brand launched last month, is the brainchild of social media influencer Rahaf Jambi.
The name ‘Jawa 7alawa’ is Hejazi slang used to compliment girls of Javanese descent — ‘Jawa’ being a term used to refer to Javanese people and ‘7alawa’ meaning sweets or candy. The number 7 is used in Arabized English to substitute a pharyngeal letter nonexistent in English.
Jambi has launched three items: The faux-mink Rahaf and Hatoon Lashes, and an eyeliner pen that acts as an adhesive glue and that also contains magnetic properties for those who wish to use magnetic clip-on lashes. 
The lash sets were inspired by Jambi and her sisters —  Rahaf, Hatoon, Jumana, Hams and Kenda — representing each of their respective personalities.
Rahaf Lashes are bold, dramatic and daring, while Hatoon Lashes are described as soft and sophisticated.
Jambi started developing the brand during quarantine, when she felt that she finally had the time to realize her goals.
“I’ve always wanted to create something for myself. I used to continuously postpone this idea, but during the quarantine, I felt like I had the time to sit and think and actually get something out of this pandemic,” she told Arab News.
At the heart of Jambi’s brand is a desire to shed light on animal rights and environmental sustainability.
“Whenever I try to buy lashes, they always turn out to be mink lashes. It’s not cruelty-free, and it’s against my values. I wanted to achieve the same sort of high-quality lashes, which feel like mink lashes, without using cruel practices.”
“One percent of the profits will go to animal charity organizations. You’re not only buying, you’re giving back,” she added.
The lash containers are candy-shaped and are sustainable as well.
“One of my brand’s main values is sustainability. It is a pretty container that can be used well after the lashes are gone, instead of just being thrown away,” she said.
The brand stressed the importance of including all types of eye shapes so that no woman has to struggle to find the perfect lashes.
“I have hooded eyes, a common Asian characteristic. It’s hard for me to find something that’s of good quality and that I actually like and can use multiple times. There is usually only one type that suits hooded eyes, but with Jawa 7alawa, I created a wide variety of lashes to suit every shape and style,” Jambi said.
She added: “The materials used are soft, luxurious and of high quality. I wanted to add something new to the market.”
Jambi has experienced cyberbullying as a social media influencer interested in beauty.
“I’ve been told my features weren’t pure Saudi and comments of that sort. I’ve even heard comments from people saying I wasn’t proud of my roots. I feel like I took something I was insecure about and I turned it into something powerful,” she said.
 Jawa 7alawa will continue to launch more makeup products in the coming months. Keep up with the Saudi brand on Instagram (@Jawa7alawa).