As I stood on the stage of the Business of Beauty Global Forum in Napa Valley, I couldn't help but feel a mixture of clarity, calmness and gratitude. Sharing my story as the founder of TooD Beauty, and as a first-generation Iranian-American, was a profound moment for me. It was an opportunity to tell my story on a global stage where I could highlight how the beauty industry’s lack of diversity and inclusivity impacted the trajectory of my life.
Growing up, I quickly realized that there was no rulebook on how to embrace my unibrow. Society seemed to promote a narrow definition of beauty, one that thrived on shame and profited from our insecurities rooted in Eurocentricity. Becoming a mother was a pivotal awakening in my life. Seeing my third daughter resemble me and seeing her beauty made me question: “Why don’t I see this beauty within me?” That question made me realize how much I did not value myself.
At that point, I knew my children were absorbing what I did, not what I said, so out of a love for them at a time when I did not love myself, I decided to grow back my unibrow and face my own face that I had not truly seen in 24 years. I didn’t have any expectations when making this decision, other than knowing I did not want my personal deep shame about my hairiness to continue influencing me unconsciously. That is why I knew that if I wanted my kids to grow up with a different perspective on their own beauty, they needed to see me embrace my own.
My own transformation served as the catalyst for the birth of TooD and the desire to challenge the norms of the beauty industry. I realized the difference between a weed and a flower is judgment, just as, the difference between my unibrow and two brows was my AttiTooD.
Today, there isn't an inch of me that I won't self-express on. Whether it's through my vibrant nails, unique hairstyles, or bold outfits, I've learned to embrace every aspect of my appearance because ultimately I found a sense of belonging to me. I wanted to create a line of beauty products that would allow people to do the same – to freely express themselves through their hair, face, and body.
Who am I to say that lipstick should only go on lips, or that blush should only grace our cheeks? Beauty should have no boundaries or limitations. It should be a canvas for honoring how we feel at the moment, a tool that empowers individuals to showcase their authentic selves to the world. That's the ethos that drives TooD Beauty.
Through my speech at the Business of Fashion Global Beauty Forum, I aimed to share my story in case it helps spark an awakening within others to ask themselves - what is my unibrow story? And how has that influenced patterns which made one erase and not embrace who they are.
As I walked off the stage, I knew that this was not about a performance but rather a practice. A daily practice of waking up and honoring who I am, as I am, and being the author of my narrative.
TooD Beauty is more than just a brand; it's a revolution. It's a testament to the power of self-acceptance, self-expression, and embracing one's individuality. Together, we can create a world where beauty is not confined by societal standards, youtube tutorials telling you one way to apply makeup, but rather, a connection to self. And through that connection, we can express and celebrate the diversity and individualism of our souls.
So, join me on this journey of self-discovery and empowerment. Let's challenge the norms, shatter the boundaries, and redefine beauty on our own terms. Together, we can create a future where everyone feels safe, seen, heard, and loved with the face, body and attiTooD that they were born with.
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