Youmna Khoury: Taking Her Dreams From Influencer To Business Owner

The beauty industry is one of the biggest and most thriving industries in the world.

With so many up and coming makeup brands now leaving their mark in the world, Youmna Khoury is a great example of taking her dream and turning it into reality, by starting and growing her business from scratch to now selling out her products in a matter of days from launching.

Connector sat down with Youmna to talk about her journey as an influencer who grew her followers to 2 million, starting her brand and the foundation she has set up through which she gives back to the community. 

Born and raised in Lebanon, Youmna started out on her journey as a beauty and lifestyle influencer in 2017, dedicating her time to growing her platform by sharing content that she knew was needed in today's day and age.

Youmna, on starting out as an influencer said, "I was sharing my everyday routine from when I wake up with positive energy, go to work and travel. I used to give a lot of tips to my followers, not just related to beauty but also life coaching about relationships as well as how to grow and tips for start-up businesses."

For Youmna, being an influencer is a role she takes seriously and does not use it as a way to highlight only the joys of life but rather all the ups and downs that life has to offer.

Youmna added, "It is important as an influencer to not show a fake lifestyle and to show people that you relate to them. I share the good times and the bad times and do not only share the happy moments, as it is important to show that we can also have bad moments."

As her followers kept increasing rapidly, Youmna continued to share her life via social media. Soon, her followers began to enquire more about the products she uses and asked her recommendations.

With a dream to create her own products, Youmna then decided to start her own brand saying, "As my followers were increasing, people kept asking me about how I do my hair, what brands I use for contact lenses and makeup, so I decided to start my own brand."

From there, Youmi Beauty was created and became a portal for women to enhance their natural features and feel their best.

Youmna further added, "I started with one product, contact lenses, in 2017, and noticed that the sales were good. Since I always love to change my eye colour, I thought let me create my own contact lenses. I did one colour called 'Special', and I created a small quantity."

After launching a small batch of her contact lenses, within two to three days, the product sold out and pushed her to continue to bring out products she believed in.

To ensure that everything was created in good quality, Youmna spent the new two years going back and forth with testing the products, and to stay true to her brand, only wanted to launch items that she genuinely believed in and loves.

Originally starting her brand in Lebanon, Youmna then brought Youmi Beauty to Dubai, making it the head office, and worked on a complete rebrand.

One of her main goals was to give all her followers the opportunity to try her products while also selling at an affordable price point.

With that in mind, Youmna decided to source the best quality materials and sell it at a price that was attainable for all.

In 2022, Youmi Beauty launched seven different contact lenses in various colours, that give the wearer the ability to change the colour of their eyes while still looking natural.

Youmna said, "With contact lenses, whenever we launch new colours, my vision was to use contact lenses that do not show that you are not wearing them and to add and change your eye colour without showing that they are contact lenses. It was very hard to choose the colours and we went back and forth for two years."

"I have very sensitive eyes and need contact lenses with power." Youmna also added, "I also have dryness in my eyes and I could not find a brand that does not make me feel like I am not wearing contact lenses. Not saying this because it is my brand, but it is the only brand, that I can go the whole day and I do not feel like I am wearing lenses."

Youmi Beauty has since also launched hair extensions and hair tools and while creating products for her brand, Youmna focuses on all the little details saying, "When we send hair extensions to our clients, you will receive it with the best packaging."

The brand focuses on ensuring that the packages are sent to the client in a great manner as well as how fast the delivery is.

While reflecting on her journey in the beauty industry since creating her brand, Youmna said, "It was a long process. When I started in 2017, I started with a small budget, and started with e-commerce, when it was not that familiar to people."

However, despite all the hurdles she faced, Youmna is determined to continue pursuing her dream and bringing amazing products to people saying, "I believed in myself and that one day, I am going to go bigger and more globally. I am happy with the results, but I still have a lot to do. For a start-up business doing this well in sales, people believed in my brand and opinion and know that when I do it, I do it well."

One of the biggest accomplishments that Youmna has received since starting her business is the Youmi Foundation, where 25% of all the generated sales from the brand go towards charity and making a difference in people's lives.

With being able to live out her dream, Youmna is grateful for her work and wanted to make it a point to help people through the foundation.

Youmna said, "This year, we had 5,000 students that we are responsible for and it is a big move. I am happy that I am giving back to the community, and they are also helping me somehow. I moved to Dubai, but I did not want to forget my people in Lebanon that really need help, and it is a big responsibility."

For people that are looking to start their own business, Youmna says, "Do something special, do not copy others do your own thing. If you are not going to do anything special, do not do it, and wait. Wait till you feel like this is what people need in a special way, at a good price and good quality." 

With multiple launches set for the rest of the year, from skincare to perfume lines, as well as the latest additions, with hair tools, the brand is one of the up-and-coming brands that cater to the needs of women and strive to make people look their best.

Whether it is from wanting to style the hair with hair tools, experiment with eye colours through contact lenses or make your natural hair look more voluminous with hair extensions, the brand has something for everyone to try and feel their best in.

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