We were impressed by Aijaz, Ayesha and Nadia’s drive and their passion to bring the best of Pakistan to Dubai through their ventures. Excerpts from our chat.
DUBAI IS THE PERFECT GETAWAY: NADIA HUSSAIN
Actress, supermodel and entrepreneur Nadia Hussain revealed to City Times that it had been just two days since she launched her beauty brand NH Skin and was obviously excited to launch it internationally at Expo 2020 Dubai.
“I feel it’s really amazing that we have been given this opportunity and I’m really grateful for this platform to be able to come and represent our country and our brands. And to be able to tell people about the modern talents of Pakistan. It’s amazing.”
Opening up about her brand, she said, “We launched on October 11 and the next day I had my flight to come to Dubai! Back home my team is working on the social media, so I’m like, remotely controlling everything!
“It’s a very different range of products because my aim was not to do natural but chemical ingredients — active ingredients. So it was a challenge and we worked very hard on the products, on the research and development and a lot of other things. But for my collaborators, it was stepping out of their boundaries, so I was very excited about that.”
She encouraged all fans to continue to visit the Pakistan Pavilion, where she held a showcase of her brand on Friday, October 15.
Nadia who has been part of television serials like Ladies Park and Ishq Junoon Deewangi, said she felt the need to start a business because she “needed something of her own and more long-term.”
“I’m also a qualified dentist. But I didn’t really get into that field because honestly the media industry had spoiled me a lot for money! I’m also modelling, acting and hosting, but I felt that I needed my own business, even though my industry can go on for a long time. I have salons, then I started a beauty business of colour cosmetics. From colour cosmetics I transitioned into skincare.”
She concluded our chat with a tribute to Dubai.
“I think Dubai is the perfect getaway whether it’s for work, fun, shopping or anything else. Even for kids there’s so much to do. Because I am a mother with young kids, if I have to think about a quick getaway with my children it will be like, okay, let’s go to Dubai!”
DUBAI IS LIKE A SECOND HOME: AIJAZ ASLAM
Popular actor, producer and entrepreneur Aijaz Aslam — known for television dramas like Kashkol and Mehndi — echoed his colleagues’ words about representing Pakistan on such a prestigious international platform as Expo 2020 Dubai.
Aijaz showcased natural skincare and healthcare products from his eponymous brand Friday at the Pakistan Pavilion.
“Dubai has been preparing for Expo for so many years so the excitement is very high. It’s a proud moment for all of us. We’re all launching our brands internationally and there’s nothing better than Expo for that! We want Pakistanis to come and see what we’ve been doing all these years.
“I have a skincare and healthcare brand and recently we have launched another range of healthcare products which are all natural and organic. We want to show the world that the quality of our products is at par with any international product.”
From modelling to fashion designing and owning his own clothing brand all the way down to his current skincare brand, Aijaz shares that he’s always had a head for business right from a young age.
“I’ve been into business since my college days! People also know me from my health and fitness routine, and I have just started experimenting with health supplements and launched that line. Whatever I have learned through my experience of all these years, I am really passionate about and I’d like to pass that on. This is an open market; there’s a huge volume and there is so much to do. I think it’s time to pass on knowledge to the general public and educate them to get into it.”
On what connects him to Dubai, Aijaz said, “It’s like a second home. Whenever you want a break it’s a two-hour flight and you’re here. It’s a different world altogether.”
I FEEL VERY SAFE IN DUBAI: AYESHA OMAR
Actress, singer and entrepreneur Ayesha Omar (Zindagi Gulzar Hai, Karachi Se Lahore), tells City Times it’s a “huge honour” to be representing her home country at Expo 2020 Dubai.
Speaking about making an appearance and promoting her skincare brand at the Pakistan Pavilion on Friday, October 15, she said, “I’m very humbled and thankful. We’re actually here to represent the face of modern Pakistan and where it is going in the next five years. There is a lot happening in the country.
“I have a skincare brand called Ayesha O Beauty. It’s only been six months but we’re ready to go international and it’s a huge opportunity for that market to find out exactly what we are doing.”
“We are also going to be talking about women empowerment in Pakistan, how women are coming forward and how they are going to be putting the country on the map internationally in the future.”
Speaking about what inspired her to start the brand, Ayesha said, “I got into it because I am very passionate about health. I started following this natural lifestyle about seven or eight years ago and have seen the health of my family totally turn around after adopting a natural lifestyle. My brother actually cured my mother’s autoimmune skin disease by shifting the products she used to natural and organic. So I became a believer. And I wanted to create that awareness amongst my own people and fans.”
She added that she also wanted to create a product line that was at par with the international market. On what inspired her to branch out into business from the entertainment world, she said, “A long-term business is something that we all need to look into. Because in our industry it’s about face value. Of course as actors we can go on acting till whenever we want to because there are all kinds of characters that will come your way but to have your own business is what every human being should strive for. We end up working for other people and it’s really fulfilling to have something of your own, where your creativity is being used and you are being challenged. You are your own boss, you create everything and take responsibility for everything that goes wrong. It’s important for a human being’s evolution.”
She was all praise for Dubai especially where the aspect of safety and security is concerned.
“Dubai is the heart of the world — it’s the hub. It is the connecting point for all sorts of cultures, people. For me it’s almost home because it’s so near us. It’s just a really good balance and amalgamation of business, work, entertainment, fun. It’s a great holiday if you have a few days off! There’s something to do for everybody. There’s a lot of work we do here also. I’ve shot so many drama serials, projects, videos here. We’ve also come here for events.”
She added that she felt loved in the UAE, signing off with, “Safety is my number one priority and I feel very safe in Dubai.”