Happy New Year 2015!

Sidi Ifni - Morocco
Sidi Ifni – Morocco

Happy belated New Year Beautiful Friends !!!

While for most people the beginning of a new year is the time for new self-improvement resolutions, I usually do not have much time to think about it. This time, instead, I started the year with a nasty case of the flu. I was very sick for ten days, physically exhausted, and unable to do any work. For once, I had time to reflect and I realized I need a better balance between managing my business, taking care of my family and myself, and volunteering. And delegate more : Whole Foods can be a great personal chef!

During the last six months of 2014, I over- worked and, essentially, tried to do more than I could handle. So, this year, I made a resolution to take more time off, to get back into martial arts training with a MMA fighter at InnerGfitness (for therapy and stress management), to not answer work emails or calls at night or Sundays, and to try to keep my personal and professional lives separate.

Since the inception of KENZA International Beauty almost two and half years ago, I have been constantly solving problems, coming up with creative ideas, and juggling the multiple hats that all small business owners wear to run a successful business. However, two events particularly energized me in 2014.

The first one was the article published in July by The Guardian Newspaper.

Khadija Fajry picture by Nina Roberts
Khadija Fajry
picture by Nina Roberts

This put KENZA International Beauty on the map as a global provider of the best, socially responsible, pure, and organic Moroccan Oils. This helped us expand our market (retail & wholesale) to the UK, Kenya, the UAE, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, France, Sweden, Dominican Republic, and even in Morocco. I will always be grateful to Nina Roberts for finding me and sharing my story to the world.
We do not have a big marketing budget to promote our business. Instead, we rely on “organic” marketing: being featured on TV news programs, magazines, and celebrities’ beauty blogs, and by the word of mouth of our many beautiful friends (e.g. customers). We prefer to spend funds on developing new and superior products, and on improving women lives.

The second one was the Chase Mission Main Street Grant competition I entered in October. A $150,000 grant would have taken my social enterprise business to the next level right away. It would have helped us create more products, upgrade our brand and website, and provide more financial support to women in Morocco and the USA. Unfortunately, the national competition was fierce and we did not receive one of the twenty grants. I was sad for a couple of days, but then I thought about all the wonderful and beautiful friends who voted for us and cheered us all the way, and I felt so much better because I know with your support I am sure we will find another way to fulfill our social mission.
Thank you again!

Looking ahead to 2015, I know it will be another successful year for KENZA International Beauty and a more balanced one for me!

Stay tuned as we will soon announce the introduction of a new beauty treasure from Morocco, a redesigned package, new giveaways, and other exciting projects. Sign up at http://kenza-international-beauty.com

With Love & Gratitude
#begenerouslybeautiful

A Social Enterprise shares the generous beauty of Argan oil

A Social Enterprise supports an Argan oil women cooperative in Morocco
A Social Enterprise supports an Argan oil women cooperative in Morocco

In October, I returned to Arazane, Morocco for the annual contribution that KENZA International Beauty makes to the Tirizite women cooperative that produces the KENZA Pure Argan oil. Watch this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qMwtGwkFLRc

Upon arrival, I found out the coop had run out of Argan nuts and unable to produce Argan oil for the last two weeks, that the price of Argan nuts had doubled because of a recent drought, and that the coop had an outstanding bill from its last purchase of Argan nuts during the summer. Although the supplier had delivered the previous Argan nuts order on credit, he now needed to be paid in full before delivering any more Argan nuts.

Meeting with the Argan nuts supplier.
Meeting with the Argan nuts supplier.

With the Argan nuts supplier
With the Argan nuts supplier
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This is when I decided that paying the coop outstanding debt and the cost of the new Argan nut order was a better way for my social enterprise to help the women cooperative rather than just distributing cash to them. This way, the coop was able to purchase 4,464 lbs. of Argan nuts that the women will use to produce about 18 gallons of pure Argan oil (both the edible and the cosmetic kind) and be debt free.

I was also pleasantly surprised by a few other developments at the coop:

– A very nice playground was built for the children community of Arazane on the coop grounds by “1040i for Humanity”, an American non-profit organization from Oklahoma. This playground is a wonderful facility for the local community as it is rare to see playing areas designated for children in Morocco.(Read more here)

– The women coop has a new building with reception area, shop, office, production lab, classroom, and a working room where the women crack the Argan nuts.

– The women coop has expanded its product line to include whole wheat and semolina couscous, exfoliating masks made out of Argan kernels, black soap with orange blossoms essential oil, and other beauty products.

New building for the cooperative
New building for the cooperative
New building for the cooperative
New building for the cooperative

New products at the cooperative
New products at the cooperative
Women classroom at the cooperative
Women classroom at the cooperative

Something that is in great need at the coop is an on-site day care for the pre-school children of the coop women. The daycare would allow these children to play, learn, and socialize with other kids instead of spending their day watching their moms crack the Argan nuts. I will focus on this project next with the help of all my “beautiful friends”.

Discover our Moroccan oils products and social mission:
http://kenza-international-beauty.com/
#begenerouslybeautiful

Read my story in The Guardian Newspaper

KENZA International Beauty supports Turning Point for Women and Families

Host committee Iftar 2013
The Iftar dinner took place on July 21st, 2013 at Turkuaz restaurant in New York City and it was a great success.Thanks to the great Iftar host committee that pulled it together and the amazing friends that made it happened by being present. We were stunned by the overwhelming response we received. Different faiths were present, different races, different ages and even mayoral candidate John C. Liu came. They all made the effort to come from near and far just to be present on a Sunday night. We shared a lovely iftar dinner together, laughed, were moved by the heartbreaking story of a survivor, the words of a youth member, and the warm and inspiring speech of Robina Niaz.

Like a big family, we were all together standing against domestic violence in New York muslim community. And that is the only way we can all participate in the change we want to see in this world. Together, like a big FAMILY, for a happy, safe, honorable, peaceful, and dignified life for everyone.. Every woman, every man, every child.

Often we believe that we are too small to change anything, don’t have enough to help, or just don’t know how to do it. Just get involved, act, and support a cause that speaks to your heart. Give back: money, skills, time, kind words or just a sincere hug.

Thanks again for your participation, your support and your love for Turning Point for Women and Families. See you next year, Inch’Allah / God willing, in a bigger venue for our growing family.

Turning Point for Women and Families
Turning Point for Women and Families

Turning Point for Women and Families is a grassroots, community-based organization in Queens addressing the needs of Muslim women and children through crisis intervention, counseling, advocacy, outreach, education and training, particularly in the area of domestic violence. It offers culturally competent services to respond to the wide gap between needs and programs available to this community.

Here are Simple ways to help:
LIKE Turning Point for Women and Families facebook page

SUPPORT-DONATE: donatenowlogo1_NFG

This year I was part of the Iftar host committee and KENZA International Beauty was honored to donate packages of our KENZA “be generously beautiful”™ skin & hair care line.

We are honored to partner with Turning Point for Women and Families. We will offer all friends of Turning Point a 5% discount on all our products and we will give back 10% or our net profits to stand against domestic violence in New York City.
Shop & “be generously beautiful”™

KENZA International Beauty is a corporate social enterprise providing Pure Moroccan Beauty Oils and supports social change for women in the US & Morocco.
Shop online

Launch & Thanks -12/12/12

Hello beautiful friends,

As we launch the KENZA International Beauty website:
www.Kenza-puremoroccanbeautyoils.com, I am filled with joy and gratitude for the love and support I have received throughout this undertaking.

I am still amazed how far the idea of creating a Corporate Social Enterprise has made it from its humble beginning. It steadily grew stronger with the help, involvement, advice, hard work, and encouragement received from my family, my friends, my Moroccan women cooperative team, and my suppliers.

While we pause at this time to thank all of you for being part of the KENZA “be generously beautiful”™ family and helping reach this milestone, we set our sights onto developing new and creative ways of fulfilling KENZA’s aspiration: “to broaden the meaning of physical beauty to also include generosity and its global impact.”

Cheers to LOVE, BEAUTY, & GENEROSITY.

The oldest Moroccan treasure: Argan Oil

Hello Beautiful Friends,

When I was much younger and living in France, I would spend my summer vacations in Morocco. At the hammam is where I discovered the countless natural remedies and natural beauty products Moroccan women (including my mother,grandmother, aunts, and cousins) were using. This is where Moroccan women gather to take care of themselves, socialize, and share their beauty secrets.

Henna

For instance, I grew up using henna on my hair to strengthen it, on my hands and feet as a temporary tattoo, and on my body (mixed with lemon juice) to exfoliate and nourish. I even used natural mineral clay as a face mask and Rose water as a toner!

In those days, I remember hearing about Argan oil (mainly the edible one) from our Berber friends, as I enjoyed eating Amlou (a mixture of almond paste, honey, and Argan oil). Occasionally, we would use the edible one also for hair treatment.

Amlou with the edible Argan Oil

Although the cosmetic Argan oil was then available in the market, its purity could not be trusted. Because Argan oil was, and still is, expensive, many tricks were used to make it even more profitable. For example, it would be mixed with cheaper vegetable or other nut oils. Because it was difficult to distinguish pure Argan oil from diluted imitations, I did not use it in Morocco. So, I did not benefit from my country’s miracle oil for many years until it was sold in France by reputable brands.

After I moved to New York I would bring my own Organic Argan oil from France.Soon I started noticing “Argan oil” products in beauty care stores. However, very few of these products consisted of 100% Pure Organic Argan oil. So, I was upset to see all of these brands placing the Argan name on their products while adding just a few drops of the oil in products filled with silicone and other harsh chemicals.

Something had to be done. I had to honor my native country, protect the authenticity and the name of our Moroccan treasure and share with my friends the real Moroccan oil:
100% Pure Organic Argan oil.

After some research, I finally found a reputable, certified, and reliable supplier of 100% Pure Organic Argan oil (the best in Morocco). This is a fully integrated manufacturer of cosmetic and beauty care products doing business worldwide for 40 years. Once I established a partnership that secured a supply of the best Moroccan Argan oil, I decided to launch my own line of oil beauty products: my Pure Moroccan Beauty Oils : 100% authentic, 100% organic, and 100% chemical free.

100% Pure/ Organic Argan Oil

At this point I wanted to do even more. Having lived in three different continents taught me that women are very similar across the globe. We all aspire for the best in our life and the lives of others. We cherish our beauty, our health, our happiness, and our greatness.

Thus, the idea of connecting women through beauty came to my mind. Why not create a social enterprise selling the best and purest beauty care while helping women at the same time? I could achieve this goal by supporting and donating to a women foundation in the US and to women cooperatives in Morocco.

“The beauty in me sees the beauty in you” is the meaning of Namaste.
We are all beautiful and all is beautiful when we bring out the best in us. Helping others is the best feeling in the world and one of the best ways to validate ourselves as human beings.

That’s how KENZA International Beauty LLC came to be. KENZA (“treasure” in Arabic) refers to the many treasures we encounter in life: nature, people, cultures, and traditions. I am proud to share my Moroccan beauty treasures and honored to sponsor a women cooperative in Morocco and to partner with a women foundation in the US.

Moroccan Women

We can all participate and contribute in the effort to change the lives of women while becoming beautiful from the inside out. The simple act of buying a beauty care products becomes an act of generosity that benefits women in the United States and Morocco.

This is KENZA International Beauty’s mission. Will you join me?

Will you “be generously beautiful”?

With Love & Gratitude