What a year we have had.
We had so many plans and so much planned, however, the unforeseen and unpredictable Coronavirus came into the picture and disrupted our lives. Nevertheless, we are still here and that is an achievement enough for this year.
The team and I had a lengthy discussion about our much-anticipated annual brand property event GLAMOUR’s Most Glamourous (GMG) that honours personalities who are making waves in their chosen fields. We thought of canning it all together because there hasn’t been much to celebrate in the past months. At the end, we decided to go ahead with naming and acknowledging those who have caught our eye.
These are individuals and personalities that have been hard at work during this difficult year and who have brought a bit of sparkle in our lives. Their work ethic is commendable and they deserve a pat in the back and some encouragement.
Introducing a new direction for Glamour’s Most Glamourous, we have widening our scope to include our neighbouring countries in the prestige GMG list. This Pan-African approach means that we will be introducing to you more inspiring personalities from around Africa that are making waves in the continent.
Themed “Glamour’s Most Glamourous: The Game Changers Edition” this edition highlights Pan-African individuals who are invested in their chosen fields and who are changing the landscape in some way.
These phenomenal personalities are unapologetic about their successes, and they are the IT girls in both on and off the digital world, as well as women who create with intention and purpose.
Being part of this prestigious list makes you a GLAMOUR girl for life and will give you VIP access to our events.
Meet our 2020 Glamour’s Most Glamourous: The Game Changers Edition winners. (Please some of the winners are yet to submit their interviews answers.)
1. Anina Malherbe-Lan Founder and CEO of VividPrive
I would describe my personal style as quite classic-elegant, but always with an unexpected pop or statement piece, which can be either shoes or an iconic bag, or a silk scarf in a bold print. It’s very much a mix of European or French influences mixed with local and
African elements. I love the fusion of different influences. Of course - the quality of the fabric, and craftsmanship is key too. My signature look depends on whether it’s for work or leisure. For work, I like to have a neutral palette, most of the time it’s either black, navy or stone. I then like to throw in a statement piece like a very fashionable handbag, and finish it off with a silk scarf from my collection which is necessary for Cape Town’s ‘four seasons in one day’ weather. I normally use local designers for my made-to-measure or couture needs when I need a garment for a special event or evening function. My favourite is long time friend Jacques Lagrange, not only for the quality and style of his couture but also his attention to detail, reliability and heart. I’ve shattered a few glass ceilings in my career. Even when I didn’t have enough experience in a field I did not let that stop me. If I had a business idea or wanted to achieve something I set out to get the relevant experience and then went for it, without fear of failure. I have done business in many male dominated fields without fear of being intimidated or put in a box. Action speaks louder than words and if you can’t convince a room of men of your capabilities, the best way to get around it is to go out and show them you have what it takes. That has always been my motto. I’m a passionate risk taker and rule breaker.
2. Kajal Badwandeen, actor & casting directorMy personal style is chic, feminine & comfortable with a luxe flair.
I love a high ponytail or blow waved hair, fresh skin with a winged liner, a few fine yet bold jewellery pieces & sneakers. I prefer a look I can layer. A body suit with a jacket/coat paired with trousers or flowing summer dress finished off with a silk scarf. My fashion sense is inspired by nature, my environment, the ocean, Africa’s landscapes, Old Hollywood, The Maharanis of India. Most often, it's how I feel wearing what I've chosen. Although glamour is commonly associated with luxury, for me it's about the quality and feeling. It can be anything from a bold red lip, a glint in your eye coupled with confidence and authenticity. It’s your own unique “Je ne sai quoi” Style is how you wear your clothes.
One positive thing that came out of lockdown is we got to see just how many phenomenal local brands and small businesses are available to us. With regard to fashion and brands, SA definitely has a seat at the high end table internationally and it's happening because we are telling our own stories, we are sharing pieces of ourselves and owning our heritage. As South Africans we are not afraid to use our voices when we feel we are being marginalised. It's not about making everyone happy, but rather doing the right thing which is sometimes easier said than done. I’m a Durban girl and I can’t tell you the number of times Durbanites have been excluded from big events, brand activations happening right here in our city, but the winds of change are coming. If we are looking at being non discriminatory across the board. In Fashion and beauty, it's getting better and better!
3. Thick Leeyonce, influencer and entrepreneur
My personal style is very versatile; It’s minimal, feminine and sexy. Some days I wear girly dresses and pink lipstick, other days I’m a baddie in a tight skirt and a mesh top, some days I’m a cool kid who wears Air-forces’. My style depends on my mood. A crop top is definitely my signature look. It doesn’t matter what I’m wearing, I like having my midsection showing. My outfit is not complete without a crop top. Who or what inspires your fashion sense?
I spend a lot of time going through Korean fashion feeds on social media (tumblr, Pinterest, Instagram, fashion blogs and YouTube)...I think Koreans are really stylish, I’m inspired by their street fashion culture. Glamour is not about what you wear or how you look, to me, glamour is confidence, a glamorous woman is effortlessly attractive because she’s always sure of herself.
As an entrepreneur who also has a local brand, I know how much the success of local brands depends on local support to grow and be sustainable. By supporting small business, you’re also supporting the local community. Local brands help to create and sustain jobs which in return helps to stimulate our economy. With regard to inclusivity in the fashion and beauty spaces, I think we still have a long way to go. Fashion and beauty brands seem to treat diversity initiatives as another box to check off, or merely as an aesthetic trend to follow. The fashion and beauty industry needs to stop treating inclusivity as tokenism, and realize that they can only make a real difference if inclusivity is a core value in their businesses. This means, doing more than the bare minimum of including a token chubby model or a dark skin model in once off campaigns.
4. Thando Thabethe, actress and TV presenter
When it comes to fashion, I like to keep it clean and I am not a fan of mix & matching too many colours, and fabrics in one look. I’m a huge fan of neutrals and pastel colours, although, every now and then I’ll get into bright colours, red, to be more specific.
I would describe my signature look as cute and sexy. I'm all for clean looks, and of course, less is more - in the most tasteful way you can imagine. Jeans can be quite uncomfortable but they look so good with so many styles and tops, give me a good pair of jeans (jean shorts) and a cute top and I’m all yours. Say what you will about the Kardashians but you can’t take away their fashion sense. Kim and a little bit of Kylie with a dash of Kendal sum up my style inspiration.
Glamour is confidence, you can make pretty much anything look glamorous with the right amount of confidence. Real confidence shines from within and leads to one exuding great beauty and glamour. So no matter what you look like or what you’re wearing, you can rock it with the right amount of confidence. Glamour is who you are and the feeling you give those around you, style is how you choose to package that glamour.
When it comes to local designers, it's hard to choose but I’ve found myself gravitating towards Orapeleng Modutle a lot more over the last couple of years, he’s garments are always clean, beautiful & lux. I usually just pick what looks great and it so happens that our local designers come to the party with really stunning items. It’s also important to make sure one gives a shout out when one is wearing a local designer, this way South Africans will see that the talent is very much alive within our borders. Inclusivity in the fashion and beauty spaces is very important.
My take on inclusivity and women taking up space is that it’s sad that this is even a question in 2020! Many women have proven time and time again that we are more than capable, and can do as great as our male counterparts, if not better, so it’s weird that we still have to change mindsets till this day, even though the evidence is there. That said, I’m glad that the conversation has moved towards men, & society in general, and how we perpetuate this oppressive patriarchal system.
It’s not anecdotal, it’s systematic, and so the only way to get more women a seat at the table is to break down the system that oppresses them.
I think staying true to myself and knowing my value makes me a game-changer. That’s something that, especially in S.A entertainment, we need to learn – that firstly you bring change to the business by not trying to be like someone else you’ve seen before you, you have to create your own path that’s authentically you. Secondly, you have to know your worth and stick to it, as much as possible, the world will catch up. My approach to breaking boundaries and shattering the glass ceiling is consistency, consistency, consistency. It’s very easy to give up after taking one little or a couple of swings, but these boundaries need one to consistently, and with great resilience, swing at them, that’s how you break them down, piece by piece.
*Follow the conversation @glamour_sa and hashtag #GMG2020