2018 has been quite the year for Huda Kattan. Not content with launching a Facebook reality TV series called Huda Boss; the launch of the Kayali fragrances; and an Instagram search for a follower to become the new face of her Overachiever Concealer, she showed the world she has every intention of taking calculated risks and staying one step ahead.
With the most-followed account in Instagram’s fashion and beauty category after Chanel, Huda Kattan is no longer just a Middle Eastern phenomenon, she’s an international phenomenon, and counts herself alongside Rihanna as part of the new diverse beauty movement. “I'm here on a mission, and ultimately that's to challenge the industry,” she tells BBC News this week. “I'm here for a purpose. I feel like for a long time brands created so many products and were just talking at people, selling them a distinct idea of what beauty is.”
Huda elaborates, "Part of the success of Fenty was the political movement," referring to Rihanna’s decision to include 40 shades of foundation to encompass a wider range of skin tones. "She's Bajan, so as a woman of colour it was the first time to see somebody do that. The need for inclusivity comes from oppression, from people feeling like that they haven't been a part of things and that's me, too."
Speaking to BBC News, Grazia Editor in Chief Alison Tay observes, “As a self-made beauty billionaire, Huda has also become the poster #GirlBoss for every girl with a social-media account and a dream in the Middle East and beyond.” Huda confirms, “I like to talk to the community of people who’ve been touched by our brand. A lot are inspired to create their own brand. They’re inspired to change their job. They’re inspired by different levels of the story that I’ve gone through. Sometimes, it’s not necessarily beauty, they just want change in their lives. And that gives me so much inspiration, excitement, and motivation.”
Interview: Annabel Rackham for BBC News
Photos: Getty Images and Instagram