Not just a pretty face, Jumana ElKhoury is also the brains and CEO behind Aesthetic Today, an e-commerce platform dedicated to offering the best deals on high-end beauty, and aesthetic services in Dubai and the MENA region. Founded in October 2020, Grazia meets her to learn more about this bold decision to launch a brand-new beauty business in a global pandemic.

Why is now the right time for a website like Aesthetic Today?
A rise in online purchases is a result of many factors such as an increase in the use of smartphones and mobile shopping, social meeting and social commerce, transformative technology, and the way shopping behaviours have changed from generation to generation. For many of us, this trend had shifted our focus to online shopping.

What sets it apart from other beauty websites?
As well as beauty without age limits, the Aesthetic Today website and app offer total security for customers as well as 24/7 support for any questions you may have.

What 5 products will you be adding to your shopping cart from Aesthetic Today?
Good question. I’m addicted to buying beauty procucts online. My favourite brands are: ObagiMesoesteticFilorgaBassam Fattouh, and Avène, and I can’t live without toner, foam cleanser, serum, foundation and a hair treatment.

What were your original plans for the business and how have you had to adapt?
We pressed the pause button on Aesthetic Today in lockdown to put employee safety first. Implementing digital meeting strategies, and distance-working capabilities remain a positive long-term outcome from this period.

What were the biggest challenges you had to overcome?
We succeeded by breaking down what we needed to do into the smallest steps and attending to the issues based on their level of urgency. Always remember that no decision is final – our most important concern was to protect and reassure ourselves and our employees. Our Head Office Dansys Medical Group, the number one supplier in medical aesthetic rquipment in the MENA region, and Obagi Medical Center have stayed strong, and worked even harder to survive. For the company and for its employees, I hope that soon we will be back to normal without fearing the pandemic. The most important thing is we continue planning for business flexibility, and we bounce back to business as usual.

Who do you admire in the business sphere?
Personally, I admire Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid’s business mantra: “We say what we do and we do what we say.”

What advice would you give other entrepreneurs?
Follow your passion, and develop your business plan. Don’t ever take no for an answer. Inspire those around you, evolve with the times and stay safe.

What’s next for Aesthetic today?
We’re looking forward to expanding throughout the GCC and MENA region as well as to be able to ship our products worldwide. We’re also aiming to partner with aesthetic clinics region-wide to allow online booking, and an option to pay online through our platform. We’re creating the skincare community of the future.

Photos: Supplied