Saturday, July 22, 2017
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Amira Abayas are offering a fantastic Easter weekend bumper sale where customers can buy one costume and get the other FREE!

ascaSince opening the store in January last year, Amira Abayas has become the talk of the town and has attracted customers from all over the country. Regardless of faith and background, Abayas have been purchased by women from all cultures. With an eclectic array of Abayas, Joobas (men’s equivalent) fragrances and Burkinis (one-piece swimsuits that cover up almost all of your skin when swimming), Amira has now built a loyal and wide ranging base of customers.

The owner Zubair Khan and the staff at Amira are very grateful to their customers who have supported them since their opening. With this in mind, the owner would like to thank his loyal customers by offering them an exclusive promotion which Mr Khan says “Is both original and fantastic value for our customers.”

Starting from Friday 14 April to [and including] Monday 18 April, Amira will be running the following promotions…

All Amira Abayas will on sale as ‘Buy one and get one FREE.’ This offer includes any Abaya of equal or less value absolutely free. Exclusive… Casual… Farashas… Batwing… Open/Closed.

All perfumes (sprays and oils) are also buy one get one free.

Amira is also on the verge of selling online and judging by the reaction of the store since its opening, Amira will no doubt go global in the very near future.

To take advantage of this fantastic offer, you can visit Amira’s Abayas at: 203 Westgate, Bradford, BD1 3AD. Tel: 01274 985858


by Qainaat Aftab

Everyone wants an ideal body, whether that is being toned, strong built or curvy, especially with the new year – losing weight is hard enough; the dieting and the exercise, the thought of it requires a lot of effort alone! But what if someone was to tell you that the ideal body could be achieved by having a waist trainer. Is this the perfect solution? The only question is do they work? Let’s take a look at the famous phenomenon of waist training and the scepticism and controversy around them.

untitled (3)The phenomenon of waist trainers stemmed from the likes of the Kardashian’s on Instagram and supposedly even helped with Jessica Alba’s post baby figure. The idea of the trend is to wear a corset like garment underneath your clothing which presses the fat around your waist together. The action must be performed on a day to day basis for a certain amount of time and will eventually create a perfect hour glass figure. It sounds easy doesn’t it? Maybe a little too easy.

Individuals are going crazy for the idea, however, there has been a lot of scepticism and controversy around the trend. Is wearing a corset like garment every day good for your health?

Well, Rebecca Collins, 20, a student from John Moore’s University in Liverpool shared her opinion on waist training: “I bought mine off eBay. I started wearing it because I saw it on social media and the outcome looked great, so I wanted it try it to lose weight.”

corset-waist-training-botchedRebecca followed a regime every day in order to achieve the figure she wanted. She recalls her actions: “I wore it every day, under my clothes and even wore it when I was exercising. The more I wore it the tighter it got. At first it was uncomfortable and felt weird but after 2 – 3 days it was fine. I think it has definitely changed my body, [the waist trainer] has made my body more of an hour glass figure and flattened my stomach a fair bit.” She goes on to admit: “There have been no consequences from what I can tell, everything is normal. I would recommend it as it has worked for me.”

Although Rebecca has seen success with her experience, it has been strongly advised by the medical profession to not try the trend. However, the popularity of waist trainers continues to grow.

Marie Claire shared an article suggesting that the waist trainer would make it hard for an individual to breathe. The article stated: “When you wear this 500-year-old device, you squish your lungs and ribs, which makes it hard to breathe. Some women have actually passed out from wearing one for too long,” says Christopher Ochner, Ph.D., weight loss and nutrition expert at Mount Sinai Hospital. And if you keep wearing it for an extended period of time? “It’s not pretty. Think crushed organs, compressed lungs, and fractured ribs.”

Before the corset transformed into the must have slimming tool, corsets were originally worn by women in the Medieval Period to flatten the stomach. During the time, women were fainting and struggling to breathe whilst wearing the fashion accessory as it placed a lot of pressure to the internal organs. The dreadful fashion accessories resurfaced to modern day.

So is waist training the ultimate slimming tool or a complete hoax? The results have varied; some individuals have said to have great success with them, whereas others have not. I guess this is an experiment that I may have to try out to get a definite answer. We will just have to wait and see. However, for those of you contemplating trying the waist trainer – please do your research before you put one on!


One of the UK’s first Asian couture house which has built a successful partnership with renowned Pakistani celebrity Junaid Jamshed, have launched their popular brand of fragrances at Bradford’s recently opened Broadway Centre.

Facebook-20151222-055004Launched in 2011 to offer a unique shopping experience and selling the elite of South Asian fashion and jewellery, Janan Luxury Fashion is today regarded as the leading South Asian fashion house in the UK often attracting celebrities from across the globe. The addition of J. Fragrances to their collection, further enhances their sterling reputation not only as a fashion house, but as major player in the fragrance industry.

J. Fragrances have outlets across the UK in Birmingham, Manchester, London and Bradford as well as distribution centres in South Asia.

image2Their impressive London branch has taken the lead with an ethnic, hand crafted layout with an earthy, wood finish; creatively inspired by South Asia. A truly unique look that expresses how their fashion brands bring the customer a breath of fresh air. The fragrance range which have fresh and airy scents as well as deeper, heavy muskier under tones, are available for both men and women.

Their recent launch at the Broadway Shopping Centre, is not only great news for the Janan brand, but also for Bradford and the Broadway Centre.

Situated near the entrance of the shopping centre, J. Fragrances’ are currently offering a sale to celebrate their launch. The sale expands to all their nationwide outlets as well as online.

For further information on J.Fragrance, visit their Bradford store at 14 Shearbridge Road, Bradford, BD7 1NP, or speak to one of their representatives at the Broadway shopping centre.


by Sarah Taylor
by Sarah Taylor

Well here we are in December, fast approaching the end of another year, and as we get ready to say farewell to 2015 I find myself in rather a reflective mood. So, for my final feature of the year I’m trawling back through the top hair and beauty trends of the last twelve months; reminiscing over the highs and lows of this years looks, pondering which ones may well stick around into 2016, and which ones may be better left behind.

Head first
Now, it turns out that the top beauty trend of 2015 isn’t actually a beauty trend at all! Instead, this year, that honour goes to a hairstyle. Yes, the top spot for 2015 trends goes to a topknot – or to be precise the ‘man bun’. According to the ‘man bun’ (love it or loathe it!) was one of the most popular searches of the year (US search results) and this year, for the first time, there has been more online interest in men’s hair than women’s, by about 6%. In fact, hair related searches ranked highest in the most searched beauty terms of the year, above both make-up and skincare. In addition to the afore mentioned ‘man bun’ other popular hair related searches included ‘purple hair’ which increased in favour from February onwards (largely attributed to Katy Perry’s appearance at The Grammys) and in the same period searches for ‘Rainbow hair’ increased by 148%! But it’s not just colourful hair that proved popular this year, grey hair retained it’s position as one of the most sought after shades, and this is likely to continue into next year, with early reports of Spring 2016 hair trends suggesting a general movement towards lighter and softer hair colours in the coming year.

Eye-Makeup-Shades-For-Brides-5Shady business
Moving away from hair towards make-up trends, contouring maintained it’s popularity during 2015 (and for a brief period of time ‘hair contouring’ actually became a thing!) however, throughout the year the focus has moved away from the original dramatic look to become an altogether more subtle affair, with the advent of ‘strobing’; a look which focuses exclusively on highlighting areas of the face that naturally catch the light (mainly the cheekbones, bridge of the nose and the cupids bow) to sculpt the face and achieve a healthy looking glow. Being both universally flattering, and a much easier technique to master, this is one trend that I would personally and professionally like to see stick around into 2016.

Cosmetics comeback
This year also saw us give a nod to the make-up fashions of the 90s, with more than one trend being influenced by the decade – although on the whole the looks were less severe than the originals. Matte lipsticks in berry, red brick and plum shades enjoyed a popular resurgence, and the warm brown lip that defined the 90s also experienced a modern revival, a look sported extensively this Autumn by numerous celebrities including Gigi Hadid, Joan Smalls, Chrissy Teigen and Kylie Jenner.

kylie-jennerLip Disservice
Now Kylie Jenner get’s another mention for a trend that I would argue should certainly be left in the past, namely ‘The Kylie Jenner Lip Challenge’ that swept the internet back in April. The challenge saw many of her followers attempt to emulate her famous voluptuous pout by placing their lips in a shot glass and then sucking the air out, thus creating a vacuum, which causes the lips to swell. A dangerous trend which produced an array of disastrous results among the many people who publicly gave this a go. In this case I really disagree with the old adage that ‘beauty is pain’.

Masking it
Later in the year face-masks had a moment. First came the craze for sheet type face-masks, with users ‘sheet mask selfies’ sweeping Instagram. This then made way for the more recent trend of ‘multi-masking’ where several face-masks offering different skincare benefits are applied to different areas of the face simultaneously to create a bespoke DIY facial treatment. I can certainly see the positives in this, particularly if you have combination skin, or the type of complexion that behaves very differently throughout the year, when it would make sense to invest in more than one type of mask. However, if not then it isn’t the most budget friendly trend, and it certainly isn’t a time saving treatment!

So there we have it, a look back at some of the hottest hair and beauty crazes of 2015. Do you have a favourite? What beauty trends do you hope to see in 2016? Tweet me at @SarahUrbanEcho


By Arooj Aftab

nt1Native Youth are finally launching their SS15 women’s wear collection. If you haven’t already heard of them they are a British brand that showcases trends and minimalist pieces with rich fabrics that create the perfect fit.

Already making a name for themselves Native Youth have featured on online stores such as ASOS & are yet to launch their own site.

From casual, to sporty and beautifully cut pieces, I love what I’m seeing so far and so need to get my hands on this collection. It looks amazing!

Following the announcement of the women’s wear release, Ash Kumar founder and creative director has said:

nt3“Our menswear collection has had an incredible three years – the brand is still so new but we are carried in some of the world’s most respected stores.

We feel the time is now right to launch a women’s collection that will mirror the clean aesthetics of our men’s line but with a forward thinking and reactive womenswear sensibility”

I can’t wait for the official launch! It’s going to be great! Keep up to date and follow Native Youth on their social media pages on Twitter & Instagram: @Native_Youth ; You can also their site at



There are many reasons to love summer, the sun has finally appeared after a long cold spring, the temperature is climbing and we can enjoy the longer days and lighter evenings. However, it’s not all good news as beauty-wise summer can be a challenging season, from make-up meltdowns to frizzy hair, blisters and sunburn the hot weather can bring with it a host of beauty woes.

Fortunately, there are a few simple things you can do to counteract the style sabotaging effects of summer. Check out my favourite beauty hacks to help you beat the heat!

Soothe your skin with plant power

Now an Aloe Vera plant is a great thing to have all year round, not just during summer, but the gel (contained in the leaves) is wonderful for moisturising and soothing the skin and amazing for use as an aftersun. If you’re not particularly green fingered you can buy the gel in tubes (look for pure natural active Aloe Vera gel) For an even more soothing effect freeze the gel in an ice cube tray, then simply pop out a cube of the frozen gel when needed, and rub it over sun exposed skin.

beauty-tips-4Combat oily hair overnight

If you find that your hair gets greasier quicker in the summer try spraying dry shampoo into your roots at night, instead of in the morning. As you move around through the night it will work it’s magic absorbing excess oil, and you will wake up with fresher feeling hair that will be easier to style.

Make your deodorant work double-duty

If you spend all summer in strappy sandals then before putting them on run your antiperspirant deodorant over your ankles and toes. This works to reduce moisture and friction, both of which contribute to blisters. It can also help reduce inner thigh chafing, which is a common problem during warmer months. And, if you apply it to the back of your neck prior to blowdrying your hair it will help prevent your neck from sweating and dampening your freshly dried hair.

Cheat your way to a golden glow

Gain gleaming limbs the easy way by mixing a highlighter into your usual body lotion. For an added bonus apply a little more highlighter along your shinbone to give the illusion of longer legs.

Summer-Homemade-Beauty-Tips-biBoost your bronzer game

Summer is the perfect time to pare down your beauty routine and use fewer products. So it makes sense that the ones you stick with earn their place in your minimalist make-up bag. Bronzer is definitely a keeper as it doubles up a great eyeshadow, and can also be used for lightly contouring the neck and décolletage.

Fight Frizz with Coconut oil

Regular readers of my column will know that I love coconut oil, and it’s seemingly infinite uses! Over summer use it to fight frizzy hair that has been frazzled by the sun by warming a little (and I mean a little!) between palms and smoothing through the mid lengths and ends of the hair. Or, mix together equal parts coconut and avocado oil, in a spray bottle and spritz lightly through the hair.

Give these easy tips and tricks a try and make this your most beautiful summer ever!

Website and social media links for Sarah Taylor:



Twitter: @sltaylormakeup


By Arooj Aftab (@AroojUrbanEcho)

A game-changing new app bringing people together. The man behind BBC iPlayer and the social TV platform Beamly; Anthony Rose has launched his new app, 6Tribes. Set to take networking to a whole new level, if you haven’t already heard of 6Tribes, here’s an exclusive insider from the man behind the app.

Question: What does your business do?

6Tribes is a brand new app that’s a new take on social networking based on the concept of tribes. 6Tribes helps you find your tribe and connects you with the people who love what you love. Whatever you’re into, you’ll be part of a community that absolutely gets you. Post what you like, share what you want and content that you love. Unlike existing social networks, 6Tribes connects people based on their interests rather than who they went to school with. 6Tribes provides with a new way of meeting people, discovering great content and belonging to a group

LONDON, ENGLAND - OCTOBER 21:  Zeebox developer Anthony Rose poses for a pictures during a photo call to launch Zeebox on October 21, 2011 in London, England.  (Photo by Tom Shaw/Getty Images) *** Local Caption *** Anthony Rose
Anthony Rose

Question: When was it started?

6Tribes was founded in November 2014. The 6Tribes team developed and tested the concept of tribes and the app user interface between November 2014 and Christmas Day, and then set to work on January 5, 2015 to build that experience. After 4 months of development the first version of the app was ready for launch!

Question: Where is it based?

6Tribes is based in Borough, London

Question: How many people work in the business?

6Tribes is a team of 12 hand-picked data scientists, user interface designers and software developers

Question: Why did you choose to develop this product/service?

The 6 in 6Tribes comes from the idea of 6 degrees of separation, and how the concept of tribes changes that by connecting you directly with others who share your interest. And it gives us many fun concepts and messages to develop further, like “3’s a crowd, 6 is a tribe”.

iPhone6Passion@2x-502x1024Question: Tell us how you got your business off the ground?

The usual combination of luck, serendipity, timing and hard work.

Question: What challenges have you encountered to date?

From experience, I’d say any start-up faces three challenges: getting its product position right; attracting funding and building the right team. We were fortunate to get our funding arranged quickly and to build a great team. Which left the biggest challenge – coming up with something exciting, innovative, useful and unique. I hope we’ve done that!

Question: What’s been the biggest highlight of your business to date?

Building a wonderful team and a new world of connecting people that we believe in!

Question: What does your company do to relax or have fun after a busy day?

We have a team lunch or dinner, or head to the pub. Right now as we near launch, we could definitely do with a few more of those!

Question: What did you do before starting up 6Tribes?

Prior to 6Tribes, my colleague Ernesto Schmitt and I co-founded Beamly, the social TV app. Prior to Beamly, I headed up BBC iPlayer.

Question: What are your favourite and worst things about running your own start up?

tribesThe joy of a dot-com start-up is that you can do absolutely anything. No committee meetings, no stakeholders to ask permission, no endless middle management people to get sign-off from. But in a world where anything is possible, it requires tremendous discipline to define a goal and stay focused on that goal. Plus, unlike in a large company where you can always call on someone to help with a problem, in a small startup trying to do something new, there is no one to call, no helpline to give you answer. You have to figure it out yourself. And for many that’s a scary thought.

Question: Do you work remotely, in a shared environment or have your own office space?

I believe having everyone in the same office is key to a creative, collaborative and efficient way of developing new concepts and software applications.

Question: Do you benefit from start-up communities and related networking?

As this isn’t our first startup we were able to skip the getting-started challenges but first-time founders encounter, and we were able to go straight from idea to a founded team in our own office space. But for any first-time entrepreneur, incubators are invaluable.

Question: Can the government and/or technology industry do more to support UK start-ups?

The tax breaks available to entrepreneurs and investors funding tech start-ups have been invaluable in turning London into a truly international tech hub in the last 10 years.

Question: And finally, if you could emulate the success of another start up, which company would it be?

Every company, product space and era is different, you can’t point to a company, say “let’s do that” and expect to have the same outcome.


By Arooj Aftab (@AroojUrbanEcho)

So a few weeks ago it was announced that Europe’s biggest sneaker convention, Sneakerness, will be touching down in London for the first time ever in collaboration with Crep Protect. This will be held at the iconic SSE venue, Wembley, on 15 – 16 August this year!

p0fm9hs7ufmprd3ujxb8If you haven’t already heard of Crep Protect, it is a hydrophobic solution which uses revolutionary nano-technology to create an invisible, protective barrier that prevents rain and stains from damaging footwear. This was set up by Jason Black and Imran Ahmed in 2012. With an amazing outcome, Crep Protect is now stocked at all UK high street footwear stores such as Footlocker and JD Sports and even fashion outlets like Urban Outfitters.

The first ever Sneakerness event was held in 2008 with a turnout of 2000 people attending. Today it has grown to be Europe’s largest sneaker exhibition with over 20,000 people attending at the events being held across Europe.

Head of Sneakerness, Giacomo Castelli said, “Ever since the first Sneakerness in Switzerland back in 2008, we have dreamed of bringing our event to London – after all, everybody in the sneaker and streetwear world looks to the city for inspiration. Now, after establishing a successful annual tour over the years with fixed dates in Zurich, Amsterdam, Paris, Cologne and Warsaw, we’re making the move over the channel, and we’re more than excited to see Sneakerness London coming together so soon. With strong local partners and the input from the vibrant British scene this is definitely going to be one for the ages.”

Co-founder and director of Crep Protect, Jason Black also spoke saying “The sneaker community is absolutely thriving in the UK and an integral part of the culture – and as the premier sneaker event in Europe, we felt it was important that Sneakerness have a presence over here. As such, we began discussions with the Sneakerness team about working with them to bring it to London. The iconic The SSE Arena Wembley is an ideal home for it and we’re really excited to be involved with such a massive and prestigious sneaker event.”

SAVE THE DATE! Tickets for the event will be released later in the year.

To keep up to date with the upcoming event you can follow both twitter pages at: @sneakerness & @crepprotect

As Bradford Bazaar celebrates three years in business this year, Urban Echo takes a look at the Bazaar’s journey from its roots to where it is today.

20120606183700470_0001Jas Maharaja of Maharaja Fabrics Director was the brainchild behind the concept as he saw a gap in the market for Asian shopping under one roof. Since its grand opening by George Galloway in April 2012, several Bazaars have come and gone but Bradford Bazaar seems to grow in status every year.

Initially launched with forty stalls, it doubled its size to its current capacity of ninety-six. Owner Jas tells Urban Echo, “I had to expand after my first year as demand for stalls was incredible. I am currently looking into ways of making the building bigger so we can accommodate even more traders and give our customers more choice.”

IMG_0295Bradford Bazaar celebrated its first anniversary by inviting popular Indian screen icon Jackie Shroff to visit the premises. It proved to be a very popular event as hundreds of fans gathered around the Bazaar to catch a glimpse of their screen idol. Shroff’s presence triggered further exclusive visits by yesteryear Indian actress Vijayanthi Mala, Pakistani television queen Samina Peerzada and Pakistani actor Nadeem Abbas.

Bradford Bazaar’s love affair with the tinsel town of Bollywood and Lolywood did not stop there as ace Mumbai based movie producer Vashu Bhagnani chose the Bradford Bazaar as a location to shoot scenes of his new film, Welcome To Karachi. Directed by Ashish R. Mohan, the film features actor Arshad Warsi in a pivotal role in a political satire about two Indians who land in Karachi, IMG_0382Pakistan without their passports. Several traders appeared as extras and Jas Maharaja was cast in a cameo role portraying the Pakistani Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif.

Mr Maharaja concludes, “Things are good for us at the moment but we can’t afford to sit back. I am always looking to improve the Bradford Bazaar and will continue to invest for the future.

“We recently started an extensive television advertising campaign in an effort to attract a wider audience and I am eager to welcome you regardless of where you live as coach trips are also welcome.”

If you haven’t yet visited the Bradford Bazaar, it’s high time you plan a visit and see for yourself what all the fuss is about.


The UK’s leading South Asian fashion retailer, Janan Luxury Fashion teamed up with welterweight boxing ace Amir Khan as a sponsor for his recent fight against Chris Algieri. Khan won the fight outclassing his game opponent in an entertaining fight that could pave the way for a much anticipated encounter with current boxing king Floyd ‘Money’ Mayweather.

amir_khanThe British boxing star and former World Champion from Bolton has attracted leading brands from around the world in the past such as Reebok, Maxi Nutrition and JD Sports. Janan Luxury Fashion is the only South Asian fashion house to team up with the boxing sensation who famously wore their traditional tailor-made sherwani when he married Faryal Makhdoom in 2013.

Launched in 2011 to offer a unique shopping experience and selling the elite of South Asian fashion and jewellery, Janan Luxury Fashion is today regarded as the leading South Asian fashion house in the UK often attracting celebrities from across the globe.

Janan memorably provided the former world boxing champion, Khan, his wedding attire when he married Faryal Makhdoom at a lavish ceremony in New York. True to Amir’s Pakistani roots, the wedding was full of Amir-Khan-Suitthe traditional series of events, including the joyous dholki event; which amongst the singing and dancing, also included adorning Amir’s house with an array of fairy lights. On the wedding day, Khan was dressed in Janan’s intricately embroidered sherwani. His best men wore Janan’s bestselling kurtas and the ladies of the family looked amazing in their stunning outfits, proudly designed by the team at Janan.

Khan’s association with Janan was cemented when he developed a close friendship with the owners as he visited the fashion house on a regular basis. Like Khan’s amazing rise in the boxing world since his professional debut in 2005, Janan’s rise has been equally impressive and they are now on the verge of opening six branches across the country. Offering a truly unique experience for its customers and offering a diverse and electric mix of South Asian attire for the whole family, Janan also provides an in-house dining experience with the award-winning Café Janan.

Amir Khan  and Chris Algieri  hold media Work Outs and Press Conference at Barclays Centre where they fight on  Friday night 27th May 2015. Picture By Mark Robinson.

The Bradford branch was the catalyst for further Junaid Jamshed by Janan branches in Manchester, two in Birmingham and potentially another two in London. The fashion house is already a favourite in Pakistan and plans include more branches around the world.

This latest development is great news for Janan as it further solidifies the brands status as the undisputed champions of high-end South Asian fashion in the UK and beyond.

For further information on Janan, please visit