Shereen M&S

I love brands that put their time and energy into promoting women of substance – brands that celebrate real women with realistic bodies and women who really are smart sensual women, which is pretty much what our group lives for. Hence, the new Marks & Spencers campaign caught my eye and after looking at their new strategy and ethos, it feels great to know that there is a brand out there that lives in the moment and is realistic with their clothes and brand ambassadors.

An Oscar-winning actress, a life changing charity CEO, an Olympic gold medallist, a ground breaking artist and an inspiring nurse of the year – are just a few of the women to showcase the new Autumn collections in a campaign by iconic British retailer, Marks & Spencer.  Very refreshing I must say after sitting in numerous fashion shows this week in Dubai with sick looking, skinny models with no butts or boobs to speak of strutting in clothes half the female population can’t fit into or look good in.

The M&S campaign is shot by acclaimed fashion photographer, Annie Leibovitz and collection will launch exclusively at M&S’s Dubai Mall store. Billed under the strapline ‘Meet Britain’s Leading Ladies’ the campaign celebrates 12 women from very diverse backgrounds and professions. Despite being very different people, their strong sense of personal style and inspirational achievements, which have propelled them to success, are the common threads which bind them together.

The enlisted cast includes women below and you can see their diversity from the talent biographies that M&S put forward. All I can say is well done to M&S who happen to be one of the very few brands in this fashion week who most women can relate to.

Talent biographies


One of the world’s biggest screen and stage stars, Dame Helen Mirren has four BAFTAs, three Golden Globes and an Oscar to her name. Her elegance and fabulous figure have also ensured her reputation as a style icon.


Darcey Bussell CBE is among the most accomplished English ballerinas of all time. She retired in 2007 to an eight-minute standing ovation at London’s Royal Opera House, and has gone on to write children’s fiction and become a popular television personality.


With an impressive vocal range and a piercing vibrato, not to mention multi-instrumental and songwriting skills, Ellie Goulding is the ultimate modern music role model.


Multi-talented supermodel and music artist Karen Elson is recognised the world over for her distinctive red hair, translucent skin and piercing blue eyes. Her international success has been driven by her determination and independent spirit.


In just 12 months, Laura Mvula has transformed from a stage-shy receptionist

into a Brit Award-nominated, critically acclaimed singer-songwriter. And now

she can add model to her list of talents.


Within a year of obtaining her degree, award-winning nurse Helen Allen founded PEP AIDS – a charity working to alleviate poverty and HIV /AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa, which is now in its 12th year.


In 2008, model Katie Piper was the victim of an acid attack. She has gone on to rebuild her life, becoming a successful TV presenter and setting up the Katie Piper Foundation, which supports people with burns and other disfigurements.


During London 2012, Nicola Adams became the first-ever female boxer

to win an Olympic gold medal. Her life will never be the same again.


A self-taught writer with a passion for books, Monica Ali’s debut novel Brick Lane was shortlisted for the Man Booker Prize and adapted into a film. Three novels on, she remains one of the UK ’s most acerbic and supremely elegant writers.


After working her way up to a top director’s role at a leading international business, Jasmine Whitbread decided to use her expertise to help charities – first at Oxfam and now as international CE O of Save the Children


Tracey Emin CBE was a leading figure in the Young British Artists (YBA) movement of the nineties, and is now one of the UK ’s most renowned contemporary creatives. She’s known for her sometimes controversial, but always groundbreaking art.


Creative Director of US Vogue



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