Peng Qureshi is a distinguished name when it comes to solutions for hair, skin and beauty. Qureshi opened her first salon in the early 1980s in Karachi, becoming one of the pioneers of Pakistan’s beauty industry. She is the sole trainer for Guinot Institut Paris in Pakistan and has on numerous occasions trained beauticians across the country over the last three decades. She is also the Brand Ambassador for the L’Oreal Paris (skincare range) and Iabel.m in Pakistan.
Did you stumble upon your career or was it something that you always wanted?
I have always wanted to be in the beauty industry since I was a child. It was something I worked towards consistently and with a lot of passion.
What was your “aha!” moment?
So 40 years ago I realized there was a gap in Pakistan for internationally trained stylists and a lack of professional products. There were so few of us back then and luck and dedication were on my side!
Did you ever consider or experience a career change?
No, never! I think that my career just evolved really organically and I was always prepared to seize growth opportunities when it felt right and presented itself.
When was a time you felt completely discouraged and how did you push through it?
I think it’s a really healthy balance of luck, positivity, and honest hard work that help me weather every challenge.
What was the best advice that your mentor gave you?
My mom told me this, and I always tell my kids that life is in your hands, you are the master and maker of it. Good or bad that’s always your choice.
What are the top 3 things you cherish in your life?
My family, my children and my happiness.
What is the #1 thing that is yet to be ticked off your bucket list?
I really want to go on a safari in the Serengeti
What does nobody tell you about being the boss?
There is a difference between reacting and responding to a situation and often the key is a very deep breath.
Name one boss lady that you admire and how she still inspires you?
My friend Karen Ahmed who runs a chain of schools called Bayview High. She also came to Karachi without knowing anyone or the language, and has made a space and name for herself.
Describe a day in your life.
I start my day at 5am, I use that quiet time to mentally organize my day – It helps me create a flow. Then I carry out my skincare routine: I exfoliate; apply a serum and a mask. Then usually end up gardening or checking my accounts in my facemask. I get to work by 10am, I rotate between my different salons, by which point I am consumed by clients and general management till I leave at 8:00pm. I come home and catch up on the day with my family before dinner and bedtime.
Complete this sentence: To me, a #BossLady is…”
What did you learn from your biggest failure?
Not to sweat the little stuff. Sometimes we focus too much on failures, we let the fear of it hold us back! But they are a given part of life. Accept it, learn from it, and LET IT GO.
What advice would you give to young girls out there who have dreams and goals like yours?
Have passion, do hard work, collaborate, share your ideas, respect and appreciate your team and create a loyal community with people from your industry.