Beauty-care Queen Shahnaz Husain
Nida Mahmood gives sari a unique twist:
Net, georgettes and chiffon saris draped on jeans - this is what
talented designer Nida Mahmood showcased at the ongoing Wills
Lifestyle India Fashion Week (WIFW) here Tuesday....
A woman who liked simple things and was “in love with her
country and grandchildren”. That’s how herbal beauty care queen
Shahnaz Husain describes Indira Gandhi, the ‘iron lady’ of Indian
“Mrs Gandhi was a very beautiful
woman; a person like her will never be born again. She had an
electrifying presence. You just couldn’t get over her personality,”
Husain told IANS in an interview over phone from London.
As Indira Gandhi’s 92 birth
anniversary approaches Nov 19, Husain still cherishes fond memories
of her - including the time the beauty expert made a special
moisturiser for the leader.
Husain remembers her as a very “soft
and gentle” woman.
“Mrs. Gandhi had an aura around her
and the kind of personality she had led to the belief that she was
very stern. But she was madly in love with two things - first India
and second her grandchildren,” said the 63-year-old.
“Once she cancelled one of her foreign
trips because she wanted to be with her grandchildren. She used to
adore them a lot,” she added.
Husain felt the media is not focussing
enough on her personal life.
“I am reading all kinds of stories
about her political career and decisions, but unfortunately no one
has written about the kind of person she was in real life. May be
people who knew her closely aren’t coming forward to reveal the
‘real’ Indira,” said Husain.
Husain said: “Once I told Mrs. Gandhi
‘the world will never ever know you the way you really are’ and she
had smiled and said, ‘The ones that want to know will find out for
Talking about Indira Gandhi’s personal
style statement, Husain said she used to like simple things and
everything that had an Indian tag associated with it.
“Mrs Gandhi used to eat simple food.
You can say very bland food. She used to love saris a lot and had a
collection of Indian raw silk, hand woven saris. She wanted to
promote India in whichever manner she could.
“Also her European hairstyle used to
go very well with her saris. That white streak in her hair was her
trademark style,” she said.
Husain also reveals that Gandhi was
very fond of her ayurvedic products; in fact she had made one
moisturiser - Shamoist - especially for Gandhi.
“Mrs. Gandhi used to love my products
and she used to use them frequently, but one day I came to know that
she was using a moisturiser made from wild lilies from some other
“So I copied the code of that
moisturiser and instead of wild lilies, used Rajnigandha flowers. I
created it for her. She liked it very much and that product also did
very well in the market,” she said.
Husain says their families had been
friends for generations and the bond between her and Indira Gandhi
was a gradual step.
“I admired her a lot for everything
she did. We were friends and I shared a very lovely and beautiful
relationship with her.
“You just can’t compare her with
anyone. She is still an iconic figure and no one can ever be like
her,” she said about the leader whose 25th death anniversary was
observed on Oct 31 this year.
Shilpa Raina can be
contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org