Dr. Shayma Nawaf Fawwaz has a degree in biology, and a doctorate in genetics from George Washington University, as well as an executive masters from the London Business School. Yet in 2013, she put her already successful career in healthcare on hold and founded Gossip The Brand – which includes the gourmet concept Gossip Café and Desserts, and an event management arm. She champions female entrepreneurship in the UAE as well as women’s empowerment, and in January was awarded the Mohammed Bin Rashid Award for Young Business Leaders for Best Female Entrepreneur. “No matter what level of achievement I have reached in my corporate career, no success could give me more satisfaction than Gossip could,” she tells Bazaar. In bringing together her passions of baking, art and fashion through Gossip, she has fulfilled a dream.
For Shayma, what makes a woman stylish is her smile, “It’s all about how you feel, your radiation of positivity and happiness.” Business aside, Shayma finds sheer contentment in fashion. “I enjoy taking the time to dress beautifully,so even when it’s a lengthy process, I enjoy that too. Dressing up is a wonderful way for me to express myself and my taste.” At the moment, there are two looks she particularly loves channelling, the casual look and the red carpet look. “When in the mood for casual, I like putting on something sporty – Splendid trousers, a hoodie, some Gucci sneakers, or shoes from Vince. For the celebrity look, I love how you can express yourself as much as you’d like. If I could dress to walk the red carpet every day, I would,” she laughs.
As for her wardrobe? “There are a lot of pieces I currently love in my closet – my Manolo shoes, my Rose Extreme Hermès Kelly bag, my Valentino jackets, tops from Zac Posen, and my Mark Cross box bags. And, since it is wedding season, I also love elegant abaya dresses.” When it comes to the final touch of any outfit, Shayma says, “nothing can come between me and my Cartier watch.” She doesn’t keep a wish list either, instead believing that one should live for the day. “Whenever I discover a new brand or piece and desire it, I go ahead and buy it.”
As for whether style has helped or hindered her career, she says, “beauty and style build good energy, whether that applies to career, relationships or any other space. Self-love is a very crucial aspect of life – helping to ensure you always look your best and radiate confidence, love and self-respect in your environment.”
Shayma Nawaf Fawwaz wears Azzalia abaya, Abeer Al Suwaidi sheila and Anaya Collection trousers and skirt, all at Ounass. Alexander McQueen shoes. Jewellery, Shayma’s own.
Photography: Richard Hall. Styling: Teresa Karpinska. Words: Elaine Lloyd-Jones. Hair And Make-Up: Blowout&Go.