Uzma Yakoob

Entrepreneur and Philanthropist

BBC Apprentice 2013 Star Uzma Yakoob is a successful multiple business owner and expert in her own right within the Make-up Industry. Through the phenomenal worldwide success of her Award Winning brand Sculpt Beauty which she launched 15 years ago, she has now achieved international presence developing various make-up brands and one of UK’s most elite Make-up Training Academies both in London and Dubai.

“I’ve always been a huge fan of Lord Sugar and respected his business acumen. For me Apprentice was an excellent opportunity to showcase my business skills and gain an excellent business partner. I was already successful before I entered the show so it wasn’t my be all and end all, but the experience was phenomenal. Though the show didn’t teach me anything about business it was amazing to be selected out of so many people”

Brand Developer & Founder of the Award Winning Sculpt Beauty, Uzma Yakoob was born in January 1980. The successful UK business woman lives in West London and was born an Entrepreneur and is always on the lookout for business opportunities to which she can add value or which hold a particular interest to her.


From the very early age of 12, Uzma Yakoob knew she wanted her own business. Having studied four A Levels, she moved onto London’s finest Fashion school – The London College of Fashion to further her passion in fashion design. Learning the skills of the fashion trade, Uzma was fortunate enough to work with some of the biggest names within the fashion industry and then went onto pursue her career as a stylist. Her natural flare for creativity didn’t stop her there as she decided to go back to LCOF to study Make-up Artistry.

At the age of 18, with very little capital and a very clear vision she launched Sculpt Beauty and worked as a Make-up & Fashion stylist. Uzma has worked with some of the biggest names in the beauty and fashion industry including Bobbi Brown, Estee Lauder, Chanel, YSL, Vogue, Harpers & Queen. With a career spanning more than a decade, she has worked with celebrities in the music and television industries and has been a regular contributor to national magazines. Uzma Yakoob’s style is always so unique and creative but yet so inspiring to look at. She has a flawless creative talent which has shone through in every project/client that she has taken on; her talent has evolved to accomplish artistic perfection.

In 2009 Uzma Yakoob was awarded UK’s Best Make-up Artist by Asian Style Awards, the award itself was judged by the leading Beauty and Make-up house contributors in the UK, including the Head of MAC Cosmetics & HABIA International. She was also the first to be awarded this title within her industry.

Towards the end of 2009 Uzma was approached by an investor for Sculpt Beauty, though it took Uzma 3 months to decide to share half the business which was very close to her heart, she decided that it would be the best decision forward in terms of achieving the vision she had for Sculpt Beauty in a shorter space of time. “I’ve never considered taking on a business partner, so when this opportunity came along it was a compliment to me, also the hardest business decision I’ve ever had to make. However it was the best route for the company, we share the same vision but come from totally different backgrounds but together our passion for the brand motivated us to conquer the industry, 2011 was a very exciting year for Sculpt Beauty!”

By the end of 2010, the new partnership executed the professional cosmetic brand that Uzma was working on under the brand name and complimenting it with an online store delivering professional beauty products worldwide. She also set up a professional training academy teaching students the innovative and specialist secrets and techniques of the trade. In addition, SculptBeautyTV was launched on youtube, and Uzma herself got in front of the camera for the first time because she wanted to share her award winning skills with the many women who lack confidence about their image. The aim of the channel was to teach many people how to recreate makeup, beauty and fashion looks inspired by celebrities. “Throughout my journey in fashion & beauty, a lot of women tell me they’re not happy with the way they look, and I think it’s really sad how many girls are influenced by what they see on TV and in glossy magazines” says Uzma “I wanted to give something back to those people and show them how easy it is to get a look they want without spending lots of money. I hoped that this would help the insecurities so many women face. For the first time in 12 years of working behind the camera I came to the forefront which was very daunting for me, but it became very popular and I got a lot of feedback from women who said how much it helped them, which inspired me to keep it up. People ask why I don’t use a model, but for me this is not about showcasing my services this is me giving something back and I want it to be personal” says Uzma.

SculptBeautyTV was a complete hit and the channel hit over a million views within the first year. To celebrate, Sculpt Beauty launched their very own iPhone App – available from the App store – absolutely FREE! First of its kind the app did amazing, delivering tutorials straight to your phone. Within the first two weeks of release it was listed in the top 20 under Tesco and was featured in Apple’s MAC World Magazine. Uzma also became a massive hit within a lot of women across the world who eagerly awaits her weekly tutorials. Uzma’s humble attitude and down to earth personality has made her own social network & fan base grow by the day. Since then Uzma and Sculpt Beauty have been featured in the likes of Yahoo Business, The Times, The Chronicle, Google News, Vogue Magazines, MAC World Magazine to name a few.

By the end 2011 Sculpt Beauty launched Smoke & Rouge, and extended their beauty range to hair styling tools with Mirage Black & the Stylebuddy mini straighteners – soon to be launched within retail outlets. Smoke & Rouge is a luxury consumer makeup brand which falls under the Sculpt Beauty umbrella and will be hitting retail stores later this year.

In early February 2012 Uzma decided to end the partnership through mutual agreement. Uzma Yakoob has become a fine business woman, turning Sculpt Beauty into an international brand. Her hard work, dedication, vision and entrepreneurial skills have elevated her status as business woman within a cut throat industry in a short space of time. “The key to a good business is dedication, hard work and being realistic. Anything can be achieved if you have a strong vision and your goals are realistic. Sculpt Beauty has done amazing because we recognized a social trend and used our skills to potentialise different elements of the business, what we did with Sculpt Beauty within a short space of time has not been achieved in the Asian industry to date. This took careful planning, a good team and a lot of hard work. We achieved this because we were innovative and dedicated. My biggest achievement though was making a difference to people’s lives and being an inspiration to many. The feeling of receiving a letter from an individual saying you’ve inspired them and helped them is by far the best feeling ever” she says. Uzma continues to delve into other business opportunities including a nonprofit organization Ladies Confidential.

“Sculpt Beauty has given me an opportunity to reach out to many women across the world, and this has given me the opportunity to build a network and support an issue which is very close to my heart. My intention and plan is to create a movement that will change women’s lives forever and never let one feel alone again…Ladies Confidential , join the movement…”

Since then Uzma Yakoob has been up for numerous awards recognising her achievement within business, she has inspired millions across the world and has conquered every angle of the make-up industry making her an expert in her own right.

Uzma has soft launched her second make-up label Smoke and Rouge which is currently being developed to be launched in 2014. Without giving too much away the brand will revolutionise the make-up industry and is already creating a buzz within make-up experts.

The training arm of Sculpt Beauty has been rebranded to London Make-up Institute. The successful make-up training school has been launched in Dubai and is in talks to be launched in New York and Canada.

Uzma Yakoob has also been very busy with charities, having her own women’s organisation, Uzma is also working with Forgotten Orphans - a charity raising money for orphanages. She has also recently been associated with Orphans in need, Muslim Aid, Breast Cancer.


Sculpt Beauty – Make-up brand, artistry services for film, TV, celebrities
London Make-up Institute – Training Academy based in London & Dubai
The Make-up Artists Agency – agency to over 300 artists across the world
Ladies Confidential – non profit woman charity – giving woman a voice
Smoke & Rouge – Second make-up brand to be launched Summer 2014


Ladies Confidential – non profit woman charity – giving woman a voice

Ambassador & Creative Head
Forgotten Orphans – supporting orphanages across the world

Submit a tip

Do you have info to share with HuffPost reporters? Here’s how.