This Middle Eastern Beauty is a multilingual TV host and humanitarian who is using her diverse background and passion for storytelling to inspire, educate, and empower women. She has been featured on multiple media outlets such as ABC, ET in Dubai, NBC, The Doctors show, Al Arabiyah, and others.
I am a Lebanese American who was born in Montreal, Canada, raised in the UAE, and migrated to the United States when I was 16. I graduated from UNLV with with a dual degree in Biological Sciences and Communications. In 2014, I was crowned Miss Arab USA 2014, and used this opportunity to jumpstart my entrepreneurial ventures!
Because I believe children hold the key to the future, I established Hawiyati, a non-profit organization aimed at improving educational resources and engendering opportunities for disenfranchised female youth. My commitment to giving back and dedication to developing the non-profit’s programs awarded Hawiyati the Top Rated Non-Profit Organization Award for 2016.
Aside from my humanitarian work, I understand the pressure that all young women go through to feel beautiful on the inside and outside. Therefore, I created ShadesOfGlam.com, where I offer beauty tips and insight that every woman can relate to. From special guest interviews, discussing the science of beauty, to discussing controversial beauty topics, I hope to empower women of all shades to love who they are externally, and more importantly, internally.
Currently, I am a host on AfterBuzz TV and aspire to continue my TV hosting career in the entertainment and glam world!
On personal motivation, Guinwa says:
My family, my community, and the commitment I have to myself motivate me.
Family: My siblings and I have been blessed to be raised by two incredible parents. They are hands down the hardest working and most ambitious people I have ever met—they have sacrificed so much to provide me and my siblings a great upbringing. Not only does it motivate me to give back to them and make them proud, but it also motivates me to be that strong backbone and role model to my future family.
My community: I love the work I am able to do through Hawiyati and truly believe that any success I ever achieve will positively affect my organization—and inherently the children and women I serve.
My self: I have always had big dreams and aspirations and I am not the type to back off or give up. My commitment to achieving my goals always motivates me to keep pushing through every obstacle.
Regarding style, she says:
Style is your personal signature. It’s your way of introducing yourself to the world and letting them know who you are.
Role Models: Oprah Winfrey, Queen Rania, and Malala Yousifazi
Favorite Clothing Item: Bodysuits! They look great for work by being paired with a blazer, or they can be dressed up with a mini skirt and some gorgeous heels! They also come in different styles—sexy or sophisticated. I believe there’s always a bodysuit that fits every fashionista’s style.
Favorite Makeup Product: Hands down, EYELINER!!! Being an Arab, I LOVE a perfect cat liner. When I am in a rush, I love using Make-up Forever’s waterproof black liner—it glides on easily and lasts all day long!
Favorite Accessory: My favorite accessory is a nice leather purse—preferably, a satchel or clutch! Some of my favorite brands are YSL, Givenchy, Chanel, and Louis Vuitton. They may be pricey, but they last for a decade and never go out of style!
- “When I stand before God at the end of my life, I would hope that I wouldn’t have a single bit of talent left and could say: I used everything You gave me.” –Erma Bombeck
- “I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.” –Maya Angelou
- “It’s hard to wait around for something you know might never happen; but it’s even harder to give up when you know it’s everything you want.” –Unknown
- “No matter how big your house is, how recent your car is, or how big your bank account is, our graves will always be the same size. Stay humble.” –Unknown
This Latin Princess is currently working for the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN) as a “Bilingual Production Assistant,” in their international department. She loves the people and the environment there—it blesses her to know that she is a part of something much bigger than herself: spreading Christ’s message and His love with the entire world. Jessica is also part of her church’s worship band, blessing those near and far (via the internet) with her amazing voice—this girl can sing!
Though born in Puebla, Mexico, and raised in several different cities, I call Chesapeake, Virginia home. However, as a believer in Jesus Christ, I ultimately know that my true home is in Heaven and that this world belongs to my Heavenly Father. With this understanding comes a sense of curiosity and creativity at discovering His world and catching glimpses of eternity. Recently, I channeled my curiosity for God’s world by completing my bachelor’s degree in biophysical sciences at Regent University. After an unexpected health scare in high school, and God’s miraculous intervention, a curiosity for science and a passion for advocacy rose within me. I have always had an insatiable curiosity for learning—especially through travel and exposure to many cultures and languages as a child. Still, my first love has always been music—more specifically, songwriting. From an early age, I channeled my creativity by writing songs about my Creator’s love for me. Later, I discovered that the performing arts were deeply rooted in the creative side of my personality. After exploring multiple science and medical career paths in the last three years, I am happy to say that I am taking a deep breath, stepping back, and re-discovering my creative side as I wait for God to guide me toward the path I should take. Ultimately, my goal on earth is to know Him and make Him known.
When asked about style:
I think one’s style starts with how one carries herself—whether in jeans, heels, or both. The inner component—inner style—seeps out into the clothes and accessories one chooses to express herself. Personally, I like maintaining an air of femininity even on my most casual days and, whenever I get dressed up, I like to keep it modest and add a touch of elegance. With the coming and going of various trends and styles, I know I will always stay true to myself.
Favorite Clothing Item: Shoes! I can’t have enough shoes—I can dress up or dress down practically any outfit depending on what pair of shoes I choose. I’ll frequently have a pair of cute sneakers in my car for school (specifically for when I’m in the lab) and some heels for when I walk over to work at CBN. Shoes. That is all.
Favorite Makeup Product: I have been using Estée Lauder lipstick since I was a toddler. Not kidding. My mom caught me putting on her lipstick (perfectly) when I was two years old, and ever since, she always makes sure I have lipstick on hand.
Favorite Accessory: My favorite accessory is a simple, custom-made silver ring with the Hebrew word “chosen” written in gold letters. I got it in Israel when I was thirteen years old. I had just finished reading a book with the same title, “Chosen,” by Christian author Ted Dekker, and deeply desired to have a physical reminder of the covenant I made with God—to choose Him because He chose me first. I have worn it every single day since.
- “Give unto the LORD the glory due unto his name; worship the LORD in the beauty of holiness.” –Psalm 29:2 KJV
- “Holiness consists simply in doing God’s will and being just what God wants us to be.” –Thérèse of Lisieux
- “Because she has decided that what I think is more important than what others think…” –The Woodworker [from the children’s book “You are Special” by Max Lucado]
- “Character is what you are in the dark.” –Dwight L. Moody
- “Love is the supreme ethic.” –Ravi Zacharias
- “I am not the same having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world.” –Mary Anne Radmacher
- “I haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.” –Susan Sontag
Bri is Sweetness Personified! She is a graduate student, studying Government with a concentration in International Relations. Her studies focus primarily on the Middle East. Bri is working toward becoming a leading expert in Middle East foreign policy, specifically working with think tanks to create policy that ensures the safety of American people. After completing her Master’s degree, she plans to learn Arabic to aid her in creating better policy and diplomatic relations.
Since my senior year of high school, I have been very interested in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. I remember staying later than all the kids in detention, just because I had to keep asking my teacher questions about Israel! Fast forward six years later, I am actively doing Israel advocacy through organizations such as “Christians United for Israel” and serve as the Vice President of Regent University’s chapter. This summer will actually mark four years of lobbying for Israel on Capitol Hill. Coincidentally, this summer will mark my first trip to Israel as well!
When asked about style:
What you wear expresses how you think and feel about yourself. I am my most confident when I put the extra effort into my appearance. Just the other day, I was wearing one of my favorite maxi dresses to a work event, and a very prominent professor took the time to wait for me to finish a conversation so that he could compliment my dress. Who knew that a simple dress could start conversations and open new doors?!
On personal motivation:
My motivation is led by my passions. I have such a love for the Middle East, and so I have spent years of my life studying the cultures, governments, and religions that make up the Middle East. It is a region that God has physically dwelled and He has chosen the Jewish people to be the apple of His eye. It is important to take time to learn about others so that judgements will not be so easily made!
Favorite Clothing Item: I love dresses! Wearing a dress makes me look beautiful and elegant without all the fuss of wondering what to pair together. It is an entire outfit that requires little effort – which is great for someone with a loaded schedule!
Favorite Makeup Product: I am OBSESSED with Lancôme Grandiose mascara! It makes my eyelashes look long and full without ever clumping or flaking. It’s a must-have!
Favorite Accessory: Another current obsession of mine is Pura Vida Bracelets. This company is amazing in that all of the jewelry products are super cute and affordable, while the proceeds go towards funding full-time jobs for people in Costa Rica! Pura Vida helps feed my beachy aesthetic, so my go-to accessory is my Pura Vida wave ring and anchor bracelet – in mint of course!
- “Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” –Matthew 6:33 This has become my life verse. Since being in graduate school, I realized that my own works and ambitions are not enough to grant me good grades. When I fail to put God first, I struggle in every area of my life, and my grades begin to slip. When God is first, life begins to align itself again.
- “Don’t let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in conduct, in love, in faith and in purity.” –1 Timothy 4:12 I am the youngest one in all my classes. It is easy for the older students to treat me differently because of my age. However, even the young can prove to be examples for those who are older. We are all destined to do great things, and age should not prohibit us from coming into all that God has set before us.
- Psalm 46:5 “God is within her, she will not fall; God will help her at break of day.” – I love this verse because it is so empowering! The Lord of all is with us through every hardship, catching all of our tears and working to mend our hearts. We are HIS daughters, and we are so loved by Him!
- “For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place, but you and your father’s family will perish. And you knows that you have come to your royal position for such a time as this?” –Esther 4:14 This is my daily motivator for my career. We have each been created for this particular time, and personally, I know that I am to advocate on behalf of the Jewish people. If we choose not to act, God will use someone else. Don’t pass up your blessing!
- “Change is the law of life. And those who look to the past or the present are certain to miss the future.” –John F. Kennedy
Emily AKA Contouring Goddess! This beauty queen is a writer, journalist, and fierce activist. She serves as a news producer for the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN). There she works as a writer and producer for The 700 Club, Newswatch, CBNNews.com, and CBN social media outlets. When she isn’t chasing down stories and producing television, she serves as President of the Christians United for Israel (CUFI) chapter at Regent University, where she is also in her senior year.
“From an early age, God ignited an insatiable passion for the people of the Middle East in me—I want to use this passion to bring practical change in the Middle East. I travel to the Middle East at least once a year to study the Israeli/Palestinian conflict and raise awareness about Christian genocide in the region. One day, I hope to get my law degree and work as an international correspondent in Jerusalem. In my free time, I volunteer at my church, watch cat videos, and study Christian apologetics.”
When asked about style:
“Your outfit is your first ‘Hello.’ People will perceive what kind of person you are before you even introduce yourself, based upon what you wear. I prefer a more relaxed style, but I sure do love to jazz it up and get fancy.”
On personal motivation:
“I am deeply moved by self-sacrifice for the sake of justice and moral clarity. My hero growing up, and even to this day, is a Polish woman named Irene Opdyke. She lived during the Holocaust and was forced to work for the Nazis because of her Aryan appearance. Instead of seeking to save her own life, she put it on the line and saved dozens of Jewish people by hiding them in a secret compartment of an SS officer’s own home. She saw a horrible wrong and the perversion of moral clarity but she was ready to die for justice. I don’t know where life will take me but I aspire to have the same strength and self-sacrifice that Irene showed. Nothing angers me more than injustice and the flourishing of evil. I will use my voice, heart, mind, and life to expose and overturn injustice wherever I may find it.”
Favorite Clothing Item: “You can never go wrong with pointed-toe shoes! Whether they’re heals or flats, they always seem to take your outfit to the next level and add a touch of class.”
Favorite Makeup Product: “I am all about brows! I cannot leave the house without making sure my brows are shaped and defined. They add structure and symmetry to your face and complete your makeup look. I’m currently using E.L.F.’s brow kit. I’ve tried everything from Anastasia Beverly Hills and Benefit and I just keep coming back to this little $3 brow kit. It’s my secret weapon.”
Favorite Accessory: “My favorite accessories are rings! My absolute favorite ring is a gold one I got from the Old City in Jerusalem. It is has the Shema inscribed on it, which is one of the holiest prayers the Jewish people pray. It says ‘Hear oh Israel, the Lord is our God. The Lord is one.’ It is a constant reminder to me of God’s desire to have intimacy with humanity, His sovereignty over every situation, and my commitment to Him to defend the nation of Israel.”
Favorite Verses and Quotes:
- “Do you see someone skilled in their work? They will serve before kings; they will not serve before officials of low rank.” –Proverbs 22:29
- “Return, O my soul, to your rest; for the LORD has dealt bountifully with you.” –Psalm 116:7
- “The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.” –Exodus 14:14
- “They seemed to be staring at the dark, but their eyes were watching God.” –Zora Neal Hurston, Their Eyes Were Watching God
- “If you don’t build your dreams, someone will hire you to help build theirs” –Tony Gaskin
- “She was becoming herself and daily casting aside that fictitious self which we assume like a garment with which to appear before the world.” –Kate Chopin, The Awakening
A Southern Belle with a Whole Lot of Personality! In her third and final year of law school, Chelsea is a Georgia Peach who plans to use her law degree to advocate for those dear to her heart: children and young women.
Here’s Chelsea in her own words:
“I have a heart for people and am energized when I am around others. Learning about one’s life means a lot to me because there is so much power in personal testimony—one’s journey shapes who one is and how one has grown into the person he or she is today. Because of my love for people, I would love to serve in public office, zealously advocating for those who can’t speak for themselves.”
When asked about style:
“Style is directly correlated with success. The way one carries herself has an impact on reputation, drive, and ambition. However, just as important as style is the ability to be ‘down-to-earth’ and laid back.”
On personal motivation:
“The Truth motivates me. ‘Passion for Truth’ is my life motto. While Truth may be painful, it is important to seek Truth and Justice. In the end, I must be true to myself: seeing who I am, and accepting who I am, is a constant journey. Perfection is not my goal and comparing myself to others is poison. I want millennial women to know that there is no reason to condemn yourselves—and settle for less in the process. Dwelling on the past and reliving your mistakes—thinking about what you aren’t, what you’ve done, or what you could’ve done—only tears you down and robs you of your productivity and creativity. Remember, your past has made you who you are today. One of my favorite lines, from a Casting Crowns song, states it beautifully, ‘You can never go back but you can turn around…’ I strive daily to be the best me I can be, by accepting my uniqueness, and using my uniqueness as a platform to inspire others.”
Favorite Clothing Item: “Every gal should have a good pair of black satin heels and a simple black dress—a combo I absolutely love! The heels go with almost anything—they can dress up skinny jeans and a blazer, or make a pencil skirt and a professional blouse all the more attractive. A black dress can be made casual with some wedges, or dressed up with pearls, a blazer, and red pumps.”
Favorite Makeup Product: “I currently use BareMinerals Powder Foundation—it’s quick, easy, doesn’t clog my pores, and has phenomenal coverage. Some of my ‘must haves’ for a quick ‘get ready’ are concealer, blush, and mascara.”
Favorite Accessory: “Every woman’s drawer should have a set of PEARLS—earrings, bracelet, and necklace. They are simple and SO classy. Always my go-to!”
Favorite Verses & Quotes:
- “What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?” –Mark 8:36 “It is important that I mature in my Faith and fill any voids with God, all while trusting in and walking with Him.”
- “If you want to know where your heart is, look to where your mind goes when it wanders.” –Unknown
- “A woman who does not require validation from anyone is the most feared individual on the planet.” –Mohadesa Najumi
- “Happiness is letting go of what you think your life is supposed to look like and celebrating it for everything that it is.” –Unknown
- “Owning a mistake is greater than faking perfection.” –Unknown
As a fellow second-year law student at Regent, Olga encapsulates the saying, “Beauty and Brains.” She is incredibly bright and motivated, while also having incredible fashion sense. In my two years of getting to know her, I have never seen her represent anything other than style and grace. In her own words, “External beauty is what gets you noticed; however, internal beauty is what gets you remembered.”
When asked about fashion:
“I’ve had a special love for fashion for as long as I can remember. Even as a child, I didn’t just love dressing up, I could even name all the famous designers, models, and recognize clothing name brands. So, having a job in a fashion industry would definitely be a dream for me. Unfortunately, I wasn’t gifted with the talents required to be a fashion designer. So, through the years, I have been involved with other fashion related jobs: I did a little modeling, fashion blogging, worked for a customer-made suits company, and started an online store. Then, the idea of being a lawyer in the fashion industry came to me (this would involve working in the trademark and intellectual property fields). And, this is how I ended up in law school.
Currently, I’m not sure I will end up pursuing fashion law; however, I know fashion will always remain a part of my life because it brings me great joy. My favorite brands include J.Crew, Rag&Bone, and Christian Louboutin—I love to mix different styles in my outfits. When I run out of space in my closet, I normally sell my clothes on my eBay store, www.NothingToWearShop.com.”
On personal motivation:
“My dreams motivate me. Also, small accomplishments, and achievements along the way, definitely motivate me to keep working. I draw inspiration from the world around me: some people (some that I know personally and some inspiring public figures), travel, books, movies etc.”
Favorite Clothing Item: “Blazer, because it’s so versatile. I have a collection!”
Favorite Makeup Product: “Definitely red lipstick! It can dress up even the most casual outfit and it’s such a time saver! When I don’t have time to do my full makeup, I just put on some red lipstick and my face looks ‘done.’”
- “I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day, and I believe in miracles.” –Audrey Hepburn
- “Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they’ve been given than to explore the power they have to change it. Impossible is not a fact. It’s an opinion. Impossible is not a declaration. It’s a dare. Impossible is potential. Impossible is temporary. Impossible is nothing.” –Muhammad Ali