I am back, but not with a beauty post but rather an interview with the lovely Lutfiya. I decided to do things differently this week, for reasons you will see below! If you have not heard of The Ultimate Workshop, then surely you are living under a rock! The one-stop ULTIMATE Workshop to satisfy all your needs under one roof? You can expect anything from food, health, beauty, make-up, skincare, emotional well-being, and fitness!

The Ultimate Workshop is a platform created for women by Lutfiya Shaik, a flight attendant for Saudi Airlines.

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This is not your regular make-up workshop and do not make the mistake of judging it as such! And this is why I decided to approach Lutfiya and write this post. After coming across The Ultimate Workshop I could not help but be left in awe! The first Workshop took place last year and I can still remember sulking because I was not there.

The aim of this workshop is not only to teach you how to apply the perfect base and contour like Kim K, but also to inspire, empower and uplift ladies from all backgrounds!

The Ultimate Workshop was created to end girl on girl hate which is so dominant at the moment. Women are no longer working together, but rather against each other. The Ultimate Workshop will encourage women from all walks of life to network. and grow together instead of tearing each other apart.

If you follow Lutfiya on social media it is so easy to tell how kind, caring and giving she is. She has reiterated quite a few times that The Ultimate Workshop is not a profit-making-organisation & a large portion of the proceeds are donated to the Crosby Women’s Forum and The Zeenat Home, which house destitute and neglected women, teaches them skills that will enable them to be self-sufficient, and when they are able, helps them to establish a small business so that they may return to society as an independent woman.

I was still taken aback by her selflessness and approached her to share more about herself and The Ultimate Workshop, which she reluctantly did, and you will understand why soon. I will warn you, it is an emotional story and you are going to cry. I could not help but tear up myself while reading her response and this is why!

Why did you start The Ultimate Workshop? Who has influenced you the most? What does empowerment mean to you? How and where do you find inspiration?

This is the raw uncut tale of how, and why I decided to take on The Ultimate Workshop.

My Mom.

To date my Mom has been my greatest inspiration, into everything that I do, combined with my Dad, who has taught me everything I know about being an ethical business woman.

My Mom and Dad were divorced when I was very little and I lived with my dad for most part of my life.

My Mom, has had the most difficult life without a shadow of doubt.

What started from a young age, where my Mother had dreams of becoming an air hostess, and model, was quickly shattered by her accident that damaged her knee, forcing her to drop out of school at a young age.

Many years later, my uneducated, divorced Mother, was left alone, and had to start from scratch to rebuild her life. With no help from family or friends, she began this journey of self reconstruction.

Her biggest fear in life- was to die alone, and live a life without love.

She suffered through abuse, her house was broken into, she lost everything once again. Rebuilding herself once more. My Mother has experienced the worst kind of luck in life.

So, again she started over.

Soon after she was back alone, and the cycle continued, in and out of relationships that destroyed her piece by piece.

Like life refused to get better for her.

However she remained strong and never let us feel her burdens, and never allowed us to see her cry.

She would sit in the bitter cold, selling items at the flea market in Fordsburg on the street, she would do whatever it took to make ends meet, but remained so soft-hearted and giving to everyone she came into contact with. If someone needed, she would give her last to them, the clothes off her back if they needed it more.

There would be days when we would have nothing to eat at home, but she would never let it be known. She has helped so many destitute women from the streets, find Islam, and find themselves.

Going through these testing times with my Mother, has made me realize how a small helping hand,even from a nameless stranger can make a difference.

I have a ton of nameless strangers who have assisted my Mother when she had nothing, that I pray for daily.

As soon as I was able, I started working to support her. To assist her, and from this I have learned that uplifting a woman, is uplifting a home, is uplifting a family, and is so rarely found. That helping hand- is so scarce.

As soon as the opportunity arose for me to start The Ultimate Workshop, I took it with open arms, hoping that I would become that nameless stranger that is able to help even One Woman. That woman could have been anyone, that woman could have been my Mother.

I read a story, where a girl saw an old woman suffering in life, and thought what a cruel God we have, and asked her Mother, ‘Why would God allow it, Why hasn’t He done something about it’. And the Mother replied, He has, he has created ‘You’.

Whenever I feel low, I think of this story and I know that Allah has sent us all, to do good by People.

To help where we can, to love, to give charity, to uplift, and it keeps me motivated to continue, and not allow what I have learned, and all my Mother has been through to go in vain.

I will be sharing the full story, about me and my Mother at The Ultimate Workshop, as the 3rd of November is her birthday, and her ticket was my Gift to Her, so that more people can have an insight into why this means so much to me. Why it pulls at my heart strings and why I continue to fight for the empowerment of women.

Its something very close to home for me.

My Mother is now facing her worst fear, and facing loneliness and a life without love everyday, which is why I do these events, for Her.

She suffers with severe clinical depression, and I know that the small things I do for her, and my events, bring her so much joy, and its what she holds onto when her days get dark. For her to know that regardless of what she may be facing, or what she has been through, it has not been in vain.

I have learned from every experience of hers, and I will try my best to never allow another woman to go through these things alone.

I wish to stand side by side with women who have been given the hardest of life situations, holding their hands firmly, and believing that together we can help so many women, facing so many challenges.

This is the very first time I am opening up at all about my Mom, about the Real Me, and I want it to be known that its not just another gimmick to gain followers, or make money, on the contrary all funds from The Ultimate Workshop go towards a charity that uplifts women.

Instead this workshop is a piece of me, that I get to share with the world.

There are so many women, who just need a break, a day out, a day to believe, a day to unwind, so I have incorporated everything women love, into on holistic event!

The Ultimate Workshop will allow women to showcase their businesses, to speak openly about their struggles to getting to where they are now, and so much more.

I hope that I inspire even one lady, help just one lady, and that just one lady walks out of the event feeling empowered and driven. Then I know, my efforts have not been wasted.

As an avid follower, it is evident from your social media that you are an Air Hostess and often country hopping on a frequent basis, taking all of this into account how do you manage to still run, plan, and organize The Ultimate Workshop and have a balanced lifestyle?

There is no doubt that The Ultimate Workshop is very taxing on me, hosting from across the world. But I keep at it, and I am very dedicated to it, to my aims and my outcomes.

The Ultimate Workshop

Earlier this week the venue for The Ultimate Workshop changed as Lutfiya felt her vision was not being met and she wanted to make the workshop accessible and affordable to more women. The ticket price dropped to ZAR1500 and sold out within the week! But don’t fret, 20 more tickets are going on sale tomorrow – so keep your eyes peeled on their Instagram Page.

  • Venue: The Rooftop Cafe
  • Date: 4 November 2017
  • Time: 10:00 – 16:00
  • Price: ZAR1500

The Ultimate Workshop have also outdone themselves with the goody bags, you can expect to see the likes of: Skinfood Apothecary, Arab Blossom, KiKi Beauty, Benefit Cosmetics, Flormar, Colgate, Fayk Official, Freedom Makeup, Artx N Art Work, Pink Cosmetics, Diamond Dust, and so much more!

The Ultimate Market

Lutfiya has organised another event on the same day called The Ultimate Market featuring Waafiqa Osman, which will be open to the public. Their will be live make-up demonstrations, scarf-tying tutorials, your favorite vendors and so much more!

  • Venue: 11 Western Boulevard, Crown West
  • Date: 4 November 2017
  • Time: 11:00 – 20:00
  • Price: FREE
BEHIND ME IS INFINITE POWER, BEFORE ME IS ENDLESS POSSIBILITY, AROUND ME IS BOUNDLESS OPPORTUNITY.

I am truly taken aback by Lutfiya, and inspired to be the best version of myself, which is what we all should aspire to be. You owe that much to yourself! Also reading her story has made me realize how important it is to be weary of the next person, and uplift them instead of bringing them down.

I would just like to Thank Lutfiya for opening up and sharing her story with me, and allowing me to share it with you! It is not an easy thing to do and takes a certain level of braveness which I endlessly commend her for!

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