By Calynn M. Lawrence
Iman is one of the few fashion super heroes who have made such an impact on the fashion industry that she has been termed “the pioneer of ethnic cosmetics and fashion” by social media. This Somali super star is not only a former super model but an entrepreneur, artist and charitable activist. Wow, what a role model!
Iman was disocvered as a fashion model while she was away at college by fashion photographer Peter Beard. Taken aback by her beauty, she was wisked off to the United States in which she began her career as one of the hottest darker skinned moels of her time. Her first luxury fashion cover was a 1976 Vogue, and subsequently she was able to land almost every single major magazine cover after that. This launched her career as a super model.
Her rare features such as her extended neck line, delicate features, beautifully bronze skin and intense eyes are what made her catch on like quick fire in the fashion industry! Some of her most worked with designers were Calvin Klein, Donna Karan and Yves Saint Laurent who described her as “the dream woman in fashion.” With her 14 year reign as a credited high fashion model, she has won the hearts of many viewers, consumers, designers and photographers alike.
When she retired her career in modeling, she decided that she then wanted to focus her plans on creating a cosmetic line that catered to ethnic women, as their shade range was not widely represented in the beauty industry! This was in 1994. Not only did she have experience in makeup as it was a personal hobby of hers, she served as the CEO, commercial face of the brand and product engineer. According to Google, “As of 2010, Iman Cosmetics is a US$25-million-a-year business. It is centred on US$14.99 foundations in 4 formulations and 14 shades, and is among the top-selling foundation brands on Walgreens website.”
In 2007, Iman partnered with HSN to launch her very own cloithing line, Global Chic. This line is supposedly inspired by her childhood in Egypt and modeling time with Halston. After almost a decade in business, her cute and cultural collections are one of four best-selling items among more than 200 fashion and jewelry brands on HSN, having evolved into a line of affordable yet aesthetically appealing accessories.
Some of her philantropic endeavours include being the spokesperson for the Keep A Child Alive Program and the Children’s Defense Fund. She also serves as an Ambassador for Save the Children. Also, she works with the Enough Project to end the global trade in conflict minerals. Iman has recieved many awards for her various secular and humanitarian pursuits.In 2010, she received a Fashion Icon lifetime achievement award from the Council of Fashion Designers of America (CFDA). This award is strictly reserved for “an individual whose signature style has had a profound influence on fashion.”
As you can see, Iman is surely one accomplished woman. She is indeed a model millionare who people should look to as an example. This is not only for her bronze beauty but her heart of gold!