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Beauty Empowered: Four women six questions

Posted by Shades Of Ebony Beauty on 17th Jun 2021

Beauty Empowered: Four women six questions

A woman alone is powerful but collectively we have impact. At Shades Of Ebony, there is nothing we love more than connecting with and sharing stories from Inspirational  women. We asked these four women from varying roles to answer six questions. We hope you enjoy reading their answers as much as we  we did.


Christine Engineer, President Ghanians Queensland Association 

Christine Engineer, Influencer

Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do

I work full-time as a site electrical engineer, I speak into and empower the individuals I am blessed to be surrounded by, I sew beautiful skirts in African Print Fabric, I run @brunchandgoals for young professions and small biz owners to help us all manage our money a little better and I serve my community as a community leader.

What’s your favorite part of what you do?

My favorite part in all I do is being a role model to whoever is watching – showing them that they too can do anything they set their minds / hearts to do.

What advice can you give to other women who want to start a business?

I don’t have a business on my own yet – so maybe I can learn from the others here.

What are you most grateful for?

Life, Love and Laughter. The most previous memories with those I love.

Always grateful for that.

What does beauty mean to you?

For me, beauty is being so authentically who you are, and feeling confident in that. Beauty comes in many shapes, sizes, and forms. Beauty can be from a smile, eyes crinkling with laughter, in the curve of a nose, the wings on someone’s eyeliner. It can be in the shape of an eyebrow, the colour of your eyes, in the elegance of a bird or the soft sway of a flower in the breeze. Beauty is whatever we make of it – and for me, it’s in the memories made and how I felt making those memories.

That’s probably not the answer you were expecting.

What’s next for you?

Very, very broad question. 

My answer: more life. To do the best I can, where I am, with what I have.

Connect with Christine here:

Instagram 

@akua.larbi

@brunchandgoals

Website - brunchandgoals.com


Janelle Founder Donate Drobe

Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do?

I am a 24 year old full time uni student, currently in my thesis year studying International Relations. I also run a non-for-profit start-up, called Donate Drobe. We take recycled and donated clothing items, style them up on our website and Instagram, sell them, and donate ALL profits to a different charity every month. These organizations are chosen based on immediate need and with the aim of bolstering smaller and grass roots initiatives. With a super trendy, young and social justice focused brand presence, as well as offering customers the ability to shop online while shopping a difference - we’re looking to revolutionize the way we shop and how we can contribute to a more sustainable, equal and socially just world.

What’s your favorite part of what you do?

Knowing that the work we’re doing, the money we’re raising and the representation we’re providing are making a difference. Even if it’s small, even if it’s not as much as we’d like – just knowing that the work we’re doing is necessary, important and is contributing to worthy causes. As someone who’s always had a passion for the human rights sphere, this is super important. A little more selfishly however, I adore the styling component. Taking pieces that are donated, and modifying them or styling them in a way that’ll make them appealing to current trends/the market, and hopefully sell. It’s a challenge but one that I absolutely love.

What advice can you give to other women who want to start a business?

Be willing to grow and change. Listen to those around you, whether they be family, friends, or even your fans/customers. Take responsibility where you can and take ownership of shortcomings. Be as transparent as possible with your audience because that is something so lacking in the business world. It doesn’t necessarily mean you yourself have to be on display, but financials (most important to NFP’s like us, but arguably important all around), struggles, percentages that you take from sales – are things that I personally find extremely important in building a brand that is authentic. Particularly, to other small business owners and those looking to get into your field, this is a welcome addition. Nothing is more helpful than a realistic outlook to what it takes to truly start something and keep it running. And we can’t begin to dismantle worker exploitation and work towards fair wages societally if people are not transparent about what they are earning, paying and selling.

What are you most grateful for?

The support I receive from everyone around me. For those who can see when I’m refusing to accept help because I am stubborn but offering it anyway. I wouldn’t be able to run a business, and complete my degree if it wasn’t for the help of my friends who let me take photos of them, offer to pack orders, shout us out on Instagram and so much more. Same goes for our lovely customer base. I never thought we’d get to a place so soon where we have regulars who love what we’re doing and support us through thick and thin. We truly would be nothing without them.

What does beauty mean to you?

Beauty to me, is existence. To just exist as you are, as authentically and genuinely as you can. Beauty means we are acceptant of the existence of others, even if it serves no purpose to us. Beauty without the need to consume, without the need to admire it. Beauty that simply exists. 

What’s next for you?

Finishing off my degree is the first priority, because its completion will free me up to focus on Donate Drobe full time, which is what I so desperately want to do. In the meantime, we are about to start applying for some government grants, to hopefully get some funding to allow us to diversify our content, pump out more each month so that we can raise more, and generally take Donate Drobe to the next step. This will also allow us to work closer with the charities we support. Other than that, keep your eyes peeled as we’re planning some in-person market stalls in the coming months, and some new exciting releases and collabs for the rest of 2021!

Connect with Janelle here:

Instagram - @donatedrobe

Twitter - @donatedrobe

Website - www.donatedrobe.com


Muza Founder Tetema

Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do?

I’m a Tanzanian African-Australian, born in Papua New Guinea. My family migrated to Melbourne when I was 7. I work as a Digital Business Analyst (meaning I help build digital experiences for end-users, think websites, mobile apps etc) as my 9-5. I started my side ‘baby’ aka small business called Tetema a year ago. She’s an eco-friendly online store selling sustainable goods from handmade natural deodorants and body oils to bamboo face cloths, konjac sponges and bamboo toothbrushes.

What’s your favorite part of what you do?

My favourite part of what I do is that I get to combine my love for sustainable practices and business through running my own small business. I also am excited by the prospect of researching and exploring new sustainable products and ways of living.

What advice can you give to other women who want to start a business?

Just start! I was um-ing and ah-ing for so long wanting to do it but too afraid, and then during the pandemic when life as we know it changed, I decided to just go for it. Cause yolo. I think it’s important to know that not everything will go as planned, like in life some aspects or things you will do will fail and that’s okay! It’s how you pivot, how you keep going, how you adapt and innovate forward.

 What are you most grateful for?

I am grateful for the “village” around me that have and continue to support me in my endeavors with the business, from my family and partner and friends right through to others who are also running small businesses. This network has been and continues to be my people that I am most grateful for.

 What does beauty mean to you?

As cliché as it sounds for me it means feeling good on the inside in whatever state I’m in, whether I have on make-up on or not, whether I’ve done my hair or not. I think that really showed during the depths of lockdown in Melbourne, if not doing my hair that day made me feel okay, then that’s okay!

What’s next for you?

I’m looking into launching a Tetema apparel line. It’s important that the clothing is made ethically and sustainably and that it’s roots can be traced back to my motherland in Tanzania.

Connect with Muza here:

Instagram - @tetema.eco

Facebook - @tetema.ecostore

Website - www.tetema.com.au


Gemma Owner & Manager AquaServ Pool and Spa &  AquaParty


Tell us a little bit about yourself and what you do?

I was born in London with a Jamaican and Anglo- Indian background. I’m a wife and mother to 3 kids, 10 year old son and 1 year old boy/girl twins. My husband and I run two businesses, AquaServ Pool and Spa and AquaParty luxury floating bean bags. I do the marketing, business development and administration for both businesses. 

What’s your favourite part of what you do? 

For AquaParty my favourite part is collaborating with local talent and introducing our brand to new clientele. We have great fun at photoshoots and I love watching it all come together. For AquaServ I love hearing about our clients reactions after our technicians are finished with their pool service.

What advice can you give to other women who want to start a business?

Find something that you love and are passionate about and go for it! Take every opportunity to network and grow

What are you most grateful for? 

I’m sooo grateful for the support from our family and friends. Grateful for the motivation my kids give me to keep going and work hard every day. 

What does beauty mean to you? 

Beauty is feeling confident, empowered and being positive.

What’s next for you? 

Apart from nappies and bottles, I’m excited to be planning our next range of floating bean bags, photoshoots and a massive launch party. We also have out first ever radio ad going live in a couple of weeks for AquaServ

Connect with Gemma here:

 Instagram 

@aquaserv_poolandspa

@aquaparty_au

Facebook 

@AquaServePoolandSpa

@AquaParty.au

Website

 www.aquaserv.com.au

www.aquaparty.com.au