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    Jessica Michault on MADAME Arabia’s launch

    Jessica Michault

    And away we go...

    A note from the editor-in-chief

    And away we go...

    I have to admit right up front that this text was the absolute last bit of writing done for this launch issue of MADAME Arabia. The pressure of crafting the famed ‘Editor’s Letter’ gave me a bit of writer’s block, which then spiralled into a surprising bout of self-doubt. In the end, what finally got me to put pen to paper was the realisation that women around the world face this sort of apprehension all the time. But eventually, they always find the inner courage to take that first step.

    That is precisely what our cover star Jessica Alba did when – at the height of her acting career in Hollywood – she stepped away from Tinseltown to co-found a clean, sustainable consumer products business. It was an industry she had no expertise in and one that didn’t exactly welcome her with open arms. Jump cut to 12 years later and The Honest Company is now a multimillion-dollar enterprise with products sold around the world. When we spoke, Alba admitted that she faced more than a few moments of imposter syndrome but, once she passed the age of 35, she felt a shift inside her. “I got a lot clearer about how I wanted to operate in the world – who I wanted to surround myself with, and what I was not going to do anymore,” she tells us.

    That is the mindset of the MADAME Arabia woman. She knows what she wants, goes after it, and doesn’t suffer any fools. 

    The region is brimming with women doing exactly this. For many, just the act of moving away from where they were born and deciding to call the GCC home is a feat of feat of will and desire. This is why, in our pages, we wanted to highlight an eclectic mix of exceptional women who are forging their future in the Middle East. 

    Case in point: the four Dubai-based expats – Layla Kardan, Mary Cristine, Nat Morcos and Tracy Harmoush – we brought together for a fun-filled photoshoot and feature. Each of them has found their calling here, building successful and fulfilling businesses across very diverse fields of interest. When we got those ladies in a room together, the creative energy was palpable – even better – watching the way they were all supportive of each other was inspiring.  

    We also have the support of our prestigious parent publication, MADAME. For over 70 years, the magazine has been advising the sophisticated fashion – and luxury – loving women of Europe about all the latest news, trends and trailblazers shaping the global conversation. Now led by the incomparable Petra Winter, the publication continues its legacy of insightful features and striking fashion shoots.

    We at MADAME Arabia are doubling down on this strategy. Crafting long-format cover interviews that you can sink your teeth into and savour. Features that highlight women from all walks of life who are dominating the narrative or just going on a voyage of self-discovery. Photo shoots that make you dream, and think-pieces that get you talking. All of it in service to a community of women with an endless thirst for knowledge and a determination to make their mark on the world.

    With this issue, we plant our flag and claim this space. In just over one month, the amazing MADAME Arabia team has created a publication from the ground up that points the way forward. It is proof positive that when you put a room full of women together, the sky’s the limit.

    Or as Jessica Alba so aptly put it, “It is so important for women to see the possibilities with their own eyes. We need more diversity. We just do. Because how things have been run up until now isn’t going to serve us for where we need to go in the future. We need to switch it up.”

    Enjoy the issue and please let me know what you think!

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