To mark the occasion of International Women’s Day, Emirates Woman spotlights on the incredible women across the region redefining their respective industries and challenging the status quo.

Scroll through to discover the 10 next-gen faces to watch and names to know.

Fatma Husam, Entreprenuer

Fatma Husam is a 28-year-old Emirati entrepreneur and influencer with more than half a million Instagram following. Proving she’s more than just a pretty face, Husam is also the founder of Kamin, a luxe abaya label loved by many for its sophisticated silhouettes and contemporary touches. On top of that, she is currently busy building a creative community space called MNBAIN, launching soon at DIFC.

Nora Mansour Samawi and Amina Debbiche, Co-founders of The Open Crate


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Nora Mansour Samawi and Amina Debbiche are pioneering the future of art collection management with its first-of-its-kind platform, The Open Crate, that allows curators and collectors to digitally store and keep an inventory of physical assets. Through this, Cultural Engineers Samawi and Debbiche aim to document and preserve the cultural legacy by focusing on the Middle East and Africa.

Rabah Saeid, Founder and Creative Director of Styled Habitat


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Dubai-based Rabah Saeid founded Styled Habitat in 2016, an award-winning interior architectural studio that boasts a portfolio of exclusive VIP clients from art collectors to entrepreneurs. With each project, Saeid puts a sophisticated touch and thoughtful approach to design to many residential, hospitality and commercial spaces in the UAE.

Sarah Alagroobi, Founder of The Letters Project


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Sarah Alagroobi is the founder of The Letters Project, an online platform that foregrounds the anthropological and sociocultural climate of the Arab region through anonymous letters. The Emirati multi-disciplinary artist, designer and educator puts forward her knowledge and insights on Khaleeji culture and sparks conversations on notions of Emirati stereotypes within both Middle Eastern and Western contexts through her practice and social media – specifically on TikTok with her growing number of following of 21.9K.

“I hope that my beliefs in advocating for cultural shifts are going to contribute to changes that will speak to the people, for the people, by the people.” Alagroobi tells Emirates Woman.

Emaan Abbass, Founder of Ketish


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Emaan Abbass is a Dubai-based Egyptian-descent feminine health advocate and founder of Ketish, UAE’s first feminine wellness brand. Launched in 2021 and backed by Huda and Mona Kattan, it provides highly effective and multi-beneficial wellness formulas that are empowering and luxurious in every way.

By entering the business of health and beauty, Abbass aims to create a safe space and empower women to gain a deeper understanding of topics we normally shy away from – all things body, arousal, desire, and wellness.

Hessa Al Suwaidi, Designer and Women’s Well-being Advocate


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Emirati textile printed designer and women’s well-being advocate Hessa Al Suwaidi has worked with some of the biggest names in the fashion and art industries. Last year, Al Suwaidi was featured on Prada’s Ramadan and Eid campaigns called “Parallel Harmonies” alongside mountaineer Raha Moharrak and actor Rakan Bin Abdel Wahid. Notably, she has also done a collaboration highlighting traditional Emirati weaving with Bentley Motors for Dubai Design Week.

Through her projects and works, the young creative expresses her cultural identity and pushes forth her regional roots and inspires women of her to follow their dreams.

Lina Malaika, Filmmaker and Co-Founder of Clay

A natural creative, (thanks to years of film production experience that runs in the family) Lina Malaika is an established filmmaker and creative consultant from the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. Malaika has worked on feature projects for publications in collaboration with luxury and contemporary brands such as Louis Vuitton and Chopard to name a few.

More recently, she has co-founded Clay with designer Farah Hammad – a modeling agency that champions fresh talent by pushing for visibility to a new generation of faces to boost local careers.

Maya Chantout, Creative Director


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Syrian creative director Maya Chantout is a revitalizing breath of fresh air.

Chantout boasts of an impressive line up of design stints at Hermes, Chloe and Celine, as well as being distinguished by LVMH for her graduation collection. Currently she works as an art director and image consultant for fashion brands such as Mirae, Casablanca and Miu Miu where her distinctive bold energy, eclectic spirit and extravagant style have an evident influence. Her unique aesthetic reflects a collage of the two culture she’s been immersed in – from her childhood in Syria and her adult life in Paris.

“I try my best to encourage people around me to respect their uniqueness and be true to themselves.” Chantout shares in Emirates Woman’s The Confidence Issue.

Hala Khayat, Regional Director of Art Dubai

In 2020, Hala Khayat joined Art Dubai as Regional Director where her extensive experience in the Middle Eastern market – specializing in Arab, Iranian and Turkish art – allows her to develop strategies for local and regional collectors’ long-term engagement, one of the driving factors for the continued remarkable success of Art Dubai.

Khayat is also an advocate for Syria’s art community, which continues to play an integral role by championing young Syrian artists.

Butheina Hamed Kazim, Founder of Cinema Akil

Butheina Hamed Kazim is an Emirati founder of Cinema Akil, the Gulf’s first independent arthouse cinema in the GCC region.

Without a doubt, Kazim has significantly contributed to the UAE’s arts and culture scene,  amplifying current sociocultural and political issues in the region through film festivals and program series. Her love for film has led her to many milestone moments including “Producing the short documentary Letters to Palestine, winner of the Special Jury Prize at the Abu Dhabi Film Festival in 2010” she tells Emirates Woman.

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