I was lucky enough to get to interview the equally classy and fabulous Shajar Khan – Miss International SA 2013.
Hi Shajar, for those of you that don’t know you, could you give me a brief introduction of whom you are and where you’re from?
- I am 22 years of age and the current Miss International South Africa 2013; I have represented South Africa at the Miss International 2013 pageant, which took place in Chicago, 23 – 27 July 2013. I am from the city of Gold, Johannesburg and I am a student at the University of Johannesburg where I completed psychology in 2012, and I am currently completing a Human Resource Management degree. Presently I am employed at Media 24 – On the Dot, and I am the Co-Owner and Founder of Paper Dolls – Modeling and Finishing School. In addition to being a succesful business owener, I am a model, TV presenter and celebrity writer for ZAlebs. I am also a proud ambassador of help2read, Khayalitsha Cookies, and Ralo Cosmetics.
What prompted you to get involved with pageants and was being Miss International SA one of your goals?
- I started modelling at the age of 13, and developed a passion for pageantry; it has always been a goal of mine to represent South Africa on an international level. My first title – which was the Miss India Gauteng 2011, allowed me to represent Gauteng at the Miss India South Africa 2011, where I placed in the top 5 and was crowned The Avant Garde Face/Most Beautiful Face of Miss India SA 2011. In 2012 I was crowned Miss Impressions and went on to be an ambassador for impressions magazine, I then competed in the Miss India SA International 2012 and was crowned poise model of the year. Upon entering Miss International South Africa 2013, I sought to be an ambassador, someone who can make a difference in the world, and more importantly our country.
- My Swarovski crystal crown that I left Chicago with, reassured me that an International woman knows that no amount of diamonds defines her, you have to see past the sparkles and into her heart. I believe the title itself has impacted my life, not only is it an honour, I am able to uplift many young girls around me, and set an example for them. The title has given me an opportunity to promote my platform on a larger scale and be heard.
What advice could you give to anyone that wishes to explore the pageant world?
- Pageantry teaches the same values that any sport does, the only difference is that we do it in heels :) , I would recommend it to any young aspiring girl. Being the co-owner of Paper Dolls: which is modelling and finishing School, we train students on pageantry, self confidence, life coaching, modelling and deportment, I can say without a doubt that pageantry helps build confidence, adds value to one’s life, and teaches girls about having beauty with a purpose.
With regards to your personal project, who are you raising awareness and funds for and why is to so close to your heart?
- My platform is to create public awareness of illiteracy among underprivileged and orphaned youth, and the impact thereof on themselves and the community. My platform embodies “pro-literacy”.
I’m passionate about youth development and education. I love working with organizations which promote literacy among young children and teens. I intend on starting my NGO in order to continue and uplift underprivileged homes and townships to raise funds for books, and educational material. As well as ensuring distribution of books in local schools, and in communities across the country.
What attracted you to becoming the brand ambassador for Ralo Cosmetics and what does your role involve?
- I am a lover of fashion and makeup. When I was approached by the owner of Ralo Cosmetics, and asked to become an ambassador, I took on the opportunity. I know that a brand ambassador is meant to embody the brand in appearance, demeanour, values and ethics. I felt that this would be perfect for me, as I use Ralo cosmetics on a daily basis, and it describes my personal style, from there bright colours to the variety of accessories, it matched the image that I like to uphold.
- As any brand ambassador would say, being an ambassador for a brand is about marketing that brand to the best of your ability. Being someone that many young girls look up to, having the right image is important. I love sharing make up tips and ideas, I am a qualified makeup artist, and I always use Ralo on my clients, I highly recommend the cosmetics as it is affordable and have great quality.
For a new Ralo Cosmetics customer, what product do you recommend to get ‘hooked’ on the brand?
- Ralo has such a wide range of products it is so difficult to choose just one product, however, the magic lipstick is my favourite product, it’s subtle and yet it still makes all the difference. I gym, straight after work and replying a bright colour lipstick isn’t the best thing to do before a gym session, the magic lipstick, moisturises my lips and stays on throughout my workout, the best part is that when it is applied it changes colour to suit your skin tone.
- Most definitely, this might sound cliché however every young lady and women should invest in a good skincare range, and remember to keep hydrated by drinking lots of water.
If you had to choose one: good hair day and no makeup or bad hair day and perfect makeup?
- This seems like choosing between the lesser evil, lol! I would choose a bad hair day and perfect make up. I think hair can always be passed as a “messy look” or it can be pulled off to make it seem as if you are trying to do something different. People interact with you on constant basis and face to face interaction happens every day so having perfect makeup and a flawless face, always gives a good impression and gives you confidence.
What summer trends are you most looking forward to wearing – be it hair, makeup, fashion etc.?
- I hardly follow fashion trends, as it always fades, having a unique style I love keeping my image “classy and fabulous” this summer, shorts are making a comeback, orange is the new black. Pastel colours paired with printed tops and skirts.
Thank you so much for taking the time to communicate with me Shajar. You are truly a role model and inspiration for women everywhere.
We are behind you all the way! All the best with the rest of your reign as Miss International SA, I am sure you will continue to make a difference!
Follow Shajar on Twitter here!