7 Local Businesses Owned By Exquisite Malaysian Women

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As we approach International Women’s Day (8 March), it’s the perfect time to shine a spotlight on local businesses owned and operated by inspiring women entrepreneurs in Malaysia.

These women are not only breaking stereotypes but also reshaping industries with their creativity, innovation, and dedication. Let’s take a closer look at seven remarkable ventures led by visionary women:

Aisya J: The Vegan Food Mastermind

source: Mushroom Lah (@mushroom.lah)

When it comes to Malaysian cuisine, few dishes rival the beloved rendang. But what if you’re a vegan craving that rich, flavourful experience? Meet Aisya Jabaruddin, the culinary artist behind Mushroom Lah, a vegan mushroom line that reimagines traditional favourites, most notably rendang, with a plant-based twist.

Inspired by her mother’s cooking, Aisya’s rendang, made with shiitake mushrooms, promises a tantalising experience that even non-vegans rave about. Despite initial skepticism, Aisya’s dedication and passion have won over food lovers nationwide, proving that delicious rendang doesn’t require meat.

Mushroom Lah (@mushroom.lah) also highlights several alternative ways to enjoy the rendang, including alongside nasi lemak, bread, wraps, and porridge.

Aisya’s mushroom rendang is available on Shopee and restaurants across the Klang Valley; namely at Sala, Hijau KL, PC Studio, and Vicked Good.

gleami – Redefining What It Means To Be Beautiful

Image via @gleamionline (Instagram)

Founded by a visionary Malaysian entrepreneur at the young age of 19, gleami is not just a makeup brand – it’s a movement for inclusivity and self-celebration.

Safa Azul’s journey from college student to makeup maven began in 2019 when she launched gleami as a small homemade brand, crafting each product with her own hands at home. This hands-on approach highlighted the brand’s personalised touch and commitment to quality from the start.

gleami (@gleamionline) gained attention in 2020 with a bold stance against cosmetics advertisements that shame individuals with dark lips. Through social media, the brand educated the public about the beauty of natural melanin and encouraged self-acceptance.

24-year-old Safa intended for gleami to serve as a friend that reminds you to embrace your uniqueness and celebrate your true self. This ethos is reflected in the brand’s latest innovation: the Cheek Pastel Blushes, gleami’s first vegan blush collection.

Conceived in 2021, this collection features two distinct shades – Twin Flame, a warm orange hue that complements natural skin tones, and Wild Child, a rosy purple shade perfect for everyday wear. Shop gleami here!

Marookha: A Women’s Haven Serving Palestinian Delights in Kuala Lumpur!

Image via Instagram

Step into Marookha and you’ll find more than just a cafe – it’s a sanctuary exclusively for women. Owned by Zara Riza, Marookha offers Muslim women a safe space to express themselves freely, embracing their femininity without the presence of men.

Here, hijabis are welcome to shed their hijabs and tudung while enjoying various activities without any worries, thanks to the strict no-cameras policy.

Marookha (@marookhaofficial) is a multifaceted establishment that caters to a range of interests and needs. It’s a place to dine, a salon, and a workout space rolled into one. In the fitness studio area, guests can partake in pilates, kickboxing, dance workshops, and yoga, led by instructors from diverse backgrounds who radiate warmth and inclusivity.

After a rejuvenating workout session, guests can pamper themselves at the salon, indulging in gel manicures, pedicures, and waxing services for the ultimate princess treatment. Meanwhile, the coffee bar and cafe serve up authentic Palestinian meals, delightful desserts, freshly brewed coffee, and refreshing kombucha, providing a culinary experience that’s as enriching as it is delicious!

Jejak by Ell: Reviving Tradition With Every Step

source: Jejak by Ell on Instagram

For Ellina Chan, founder of Jejak, footwear is more than just fashion – it’s a celebration of culture and heritage.

Inspired by the intricate details of traditional Indonesian weddings, Ellina, who is of Indonesian-Chinese descent, set out to create footwear that honours Malaysia’s diverse traditions. Jejak’s handcrafted heels, adorned with lace and beads, are a testament to Ellina’s vision of blending sophistication with cultural authenticity.

With each pair, Jejak not only completes an outfit but also preserves and promotes Malaysia’s rich heritage. In a world of mass-produced fashion, Jejak stands out as a symbol of craftsmanship and tradition.

Jejak by Ell doesn’t stop here – in fact, their new collection just made its debut last month! You can check it out on their Instagram page.

Kudap Manes by Ehsyae: From Passion To Plate

Image provided to JUICE

Nur Aisyah binti Embong, the passionate soul behind Kudap Manes by Ehsyae, is proof that following your dreams can lead to sweet success.

From her humble beginnings as an insurance professional, Nur Aisyah took a leap of faith to pursue her lifelong passion for baking. With a knack for creating delectable treats that began in her school days, she has been selling her baked goods since she was a teenager.

With her children, aged 4 and 2, eagerly joining her in the kitchen, Kudap Manes by Ehsyae is a family affair filled with love and dedication. Nur Aisyah’s specialties include, but are not limited to, heavenly pavlova and custom cakes – crafted with precision and care.

Beyond individual treats, Kudap Manes by Ehsyae also offers dessert tables perfect for celebrations and caters to corporate orders. Check them out on Instagram for more!

Bash Clothing: Where Every Girl Finds Her Style Story

source: Instagram/ @bashclothing.co

Established in 2014, Bash Clothing was born from the dreams of two ambitious girls with a simple yet powerful mission: to deliver the “Bash” in fashion to girls everywhere, all while maintaining affordability and quality.

As avid online shoppers themselves, they understood the frustration of fashion with sky-high price tags. Thus, Bash Clothing was created to empower young adult girls to express themselves through fashion without breaking the bank.

From outfits perfect for wedding celebrations to chic ensembles for date nights, birthday extravaganzas, and stylish workwear, Bash Clothing has curated a versatile collection to suit every occasion.

With a commitment to affordability, quality, and empowerment, Bash Clothing continues to inspire girls to confidently express themselves through fashion, one stylish ensemble at a time. Shop now on bashclothing.co!

Desi Rose Cosmetics: Celebrating Beauty In Every Shade

Image via John PSD/ JUICE

In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, twin sisters Suvikha and Sucndra Anand Kumar, both law school students, embarked on a courageous journey to redefine beauty standards with their brand, Desi Rose Cosmetics. Founded in 2020, this local brand has quickly become a symbol of inclusivity and empowerment within Malaysia’s beauty industry.

With a deep-rooted passion for makeup and a desire for social change, the sisters saw an opportunity to cater to the diverse tapestry of brown skin tones often overlooked by mainstream beauty brands. Thus, Desi Rose Cosmetics was born, with a mission to celebrate and highlight the unique beauty of individuals with brown skin.

Desi Rose Cosmetics offers a wide range of makeup products specifically formulated to complement brown skin tones, from foundations and concealers to lipsticks and eyeshadows. Each product is meticulously crafted to provide flawless coverage and vibrant colour payoff, empowering customers to embrace their natural beauty with confidence.

Apart from beauty, the brand also offers a range of self defence products, advocating for the safety of Malaysian women. Check out Desi Rose Cosmetics on Shopee and stay connected with them via Instagram for more.

As we celebrate Women’s Day, let’s not only recognise the achievements of these incredible women but also support their businesses and empower more women entrepreneurs to follow their dreams.

Whether it’s through food, makeup, or fashion, they are proving that entrepreneurship knows no bounds – and that’s something worth celebrating every day! ❤️