GIVING: ANISA BEAUTY + THE $50,000 PLEDGE

2020 was a year like no other in so many ways. We learned as an industry – and society – that we can be made to be vulnerable beyond our control. We learned that we need to be more open and inclusive and listen to the needs of our brothers and sisters in artistry. We realized that even in the most adverse circumstances we have the ability to pivot and evolve to keep moving forward. And, maybe most importantly, we discovered that when we come together as a community to support each other, we get through anything – no matter how daunting

This year saw many business come to the forefront of important conversations and take action to make changes within their own business and help others change as well. And while there are many who worked hard at supporting others – a few stood out as exceptional in their unwavering commitment to supporting important causes and helping us move forward as a community. ANISA Beauty is one of those companies and their $50,000 Pledge is a blueprint for how to show your support in a meaningful way. Our own Michael DeVellis sat down – virtually of course – with ANISA Beauty founder, Anisa Telwar Kaicker to learn more about the program and Anisa’s personal and corporate commitment to supporting important causes.

Michael DeVellis: What is the ANISA Beauty $50,000 Pledge?
Anisa Telwar Kaicker: In June of 2020, as we found ourself amidst so much social unrest, we made a financial commitment to support organizations we believe are making a difference in the pursuit of social justice.

MD: How did you come up with the idea?
ATK: I was intentionally looking for all the different way I could get Continue reading

GIVING: ZACH GARFINKLE + MR EYELINER + ANTI-BULLYING

How did you come up with the idea for Mr Eyeliner?
The idea behind Mr Eyeliner is that the eyeliners are truly created for all individuals.  Many years ago, when I was a performer, young guys would come up to me after a show. They would tell me their stories of how they had to wear their sister’s or girlfriends’ eyeliner because they didn’t feel secure going to the store and buying eyeliner because they would be made fun of at the store. The original reasoning in creating Mr Eyeliner was to give everyone the freedom to purchase, wear and express themselves with eyeliners. Truly show that you can be yourself.

How did you become involved in the anti-bullying cause?
It was about four years ago. I started noticing bullying situations everywhere. No one seemed to have an outlet or safe place to discuss it. Too many just ignored it. I started searching the internet for Continue reading

GIVING MATIN MAULAWIZADA + AFGHAN HANDS

What is Afghan Hands?
First thing to know is that Afghan Hands is a nonprofit organization that teaches women to earn a living. It is not a charity as one might think. Every member of our  Afghan Hands family earns their money by studying and/or working for the Afghan Hands project. The goal is to give a hand up, not a hand down to participants. We are primarily a literacy project for adult women that could not get an education due to war and the closure of girls school during the Taliban, and later due to post-war societal issues. We started in 2004 with five widows and quickly grew to 40. We also fine-tuned their embroidery skills in order for them to earn a living so they are not burdens to their family any longer and quickly become financial assets.

What are the biggest challenges for women today in Afghanistan?
Gender discrimination is a class issue in Afghanistan for the most part. Educated women can hold jobs as high as they wish. This reflects sexism as a class and financial construct in Afghanistan. Education is the only way out of that loop.

What makes the work that Afghan Hands does unique to other organizations that are there to help?
We are a grassroots organization that prides itself on being sustainable without the help of government, military or other types of sponsors. On one hand we pride ourselves on Continue reading

GIVING: DR. BRANDT FOUNDATION

Born in New Jersey on June 26, 1949, Fredric Brandt set out to change the beauty world and change it he did. After graduating from Hahnemann Medical College, Brandt held residencies at New York University and The University of Miami. In 1982 he opened his first practice in Miami and later, in 1998 set his sights on New York. As a cancer researcher specializing in Leukemia at the renowned Memorial Sloan- Kettering Hospital in New York City, Dr. Brandt began his discovery of natural antioxidants to fight free radical damage. This work would be the catalyst for the development of his eponymous skincare line.

Brandt’s cutting edge artistic approach set him apart from the rest of the industry. This included being the first person to incorporate the healing power of green tea into skincare. He launched the first ever in home treatments and peels allowing his clients to treat themselves from the comfort of their own personal space.

His client base became the biggest names in Hollywood and he became a celebrity among them in his own right. He would even joke with journalists, asking Continue reading