Le’jemalik: Where Tradition and Women Empowerment Meet
Meet Huda Quhshi the founder of Le’jemalik Beauty Salon, located in Brooklyn, New York. Le’jemalik (“for your beauty” in Arabic) is a salon that primarily caters to hijab wearing Muslim women. In some traditions of Islam it’s forbidden for women to show their hair to men outside of their family.
Huda saw a need for women in her community, to have a safe space where they could be pampered, and feel comfortable in a single-gendered environment.
- Tell us about yourself.
My Name is Huda, a licensed cosmetologist. I am Yemeni American born and raised in Brooklyn. I am 37 years old married and a mother of three children, ages 12,13 and 17.
- What made you want to open your own salon?
Le’jemalik Salon & Boutique is everything a girl can ever need. From makeup application for an evening out, a relaxing afternoon at the spa, or hair styling for an entire bridal party, we offer a range of services that could cater to the needs of every woman. Le’jemalik is designed to be a safe haven for women who, for either cultural and/or religious reasons, could not receive such services at any other salon. As a Muslim woman myself, I always had difficulty finding a salon that could accommodate my needs for a women only space. For this reason I always knew that I had to do just that!
From a quick glance at the salon it’s pretty easy to figure out that our inspiration for the salon was a wedding hall. While I provide services for all occasions, my specialty is in bridal occasions. Our salon is equipped with a VIP bridal room that was designed with built in glass closets to place wedding gowns, shoes, and accessories. We work with brides all of the time and so we know how stressful things can get sometimes. For this reason we have designed the salon with a bride in mind to make sure that we have done everything we can to make her special day go as smoothly as possible.
- What’s the greatest highlight, thus far, of having your own business?
We have gotten wonderful feedback! As I said earlier many women of all faiths have reached out to commend us on our efforts and support the salon. We have also been excited about support from our community who has welcomed us into the Bay Ridge neighborhood. The greatest highlight is receiving such supportive and heartwarming messages from women of all faiths and background telling us how happy they are to see that we have opened Le’jemalik. Honestly I still can’t believe it! I have to pinch myself sometimes to make sure it still isn’t a dream. The opening was so surreal! I knew people were excited but the turnout shocked me. We expected about 200 people to make it and had over 600 people show up. It was unbelievable!
- What has been the most difficult part of your journey?
Being a Muslim entrepreneur while being a wife and mother of three was no easy task. Trying to find a balance between family and business was a struggle but my family stood by me all the way. Their undying support is what keeps me aiming high. They are my rock and I know I can always stand strong with my loving family by my side.
- What are your passions outside of work? Any hobbies?
I love teaching! We are offering seminars on beauty techniques that range from makeup application to tips and tricks for hair styling. We will be inviting other highly acclaimed artists in the industry to guest teach.
- Thoughts on being a Muslim businesswoman? Any particularly positive or negative experiences?
Le’jemalik is designed to be a safe haven for women who, for either cultural and/or religious reasons, could not receive such services at any other salon. As a Muslim woman myself, I always had difficulty finding a salon that could accommodate my needs. I believe the opening of my salon came exactly at the right time especially after Trumps presidency. I believe that he’s ironically brought everyone closer together. I have had numerous messages of support from all women, not just Muslim women, who love the idea of having an all inclusive women’s private salon. Le’jemalik is here to stay and we will continue to empower women because that is what we stand for.
- Where can we find you?
Business Phone: 917.378.8993
- All photo’s courtesy and property of Le’jemalik
Written by Evita Girón, Contributing Writer at #MyGirlSquad
Greetings! My name is Evita Girón and I am a proud wife and mother of a four – year old girl named Tatiana, higher education administrator, a graduate student studying pastoral/spiritual counseling, a freelance writer, and an aspiring children’s book author. I enjoy spending time with family and friends, being an inspiration to others in any way that I can, watching and collecting foreign films, traveling, writing, laughing and challenging myself to learn something new. I’m currently a Contributing Writer for My Girl Squad blog, and The Secret Curly Society. Currently, I am working on a children’s book inspired by my daughter, called The Girl With The Magical Curls. My book is not yet published, as it’s currently in the third round of edits. Check out my portfolio here: https://evitagiron.contently.com/