HomeBeautyZoey Rahman Redefines Beauty Standards With MIKASERIES

Zoey Rahman Redefines Beauty Standards With MIKASERIES

Text by: Farrah Darma

Strategically at the heart of Malaysia’s cosmetics industry, MIKASERIES has emerged as one of the pioneering forces that is redefining unisex beauty products in Malaysia and beyond.

Zoey Rahman MIKASERIES
Zoey Rahman is wearing Bajuu by Wardrobe. Photo by Bibo Aswan.

As an online market leader, MIKASERIES has transcended boundaries under the visionary leadership of its CEO, Zoey Rahman, a revered local artist and entrepreneur.

From its inception back in 2018, MIKASERIES has made significant strides when it comes to revolutionizing beauty norms, earning the prestigious moniker of the “unisex beauty trailblazer.” This recognition is not merely a testament to its success but also a celebration of Zoey Rahman’s unwavering commitment to competence, originality, and entrepreneurial zeal.

What sets MIKASERIES apart is its steadfast dedication to offering high-quality cosmetic products that cater to all genders. This inclusivity has garnered widespread acclaim, propelling the brand’s popularity not just in Malaysia but across borders, reaching markets in Singapore, Indonesia, Brunei and several other countries.

How It All Started

Interestingly, Zoey has an educational background in Interior Design and began his career in the entertainment industry with his game show “Gerak Geri Gasing” on Astro Ceria back in 2004. Shortly after, he began his pursuit of acting in local films. Having spent most of his career in the creative industry, he never thought he would one day create his very own beauty brand.

Being deeply entrenched in the entertainment world, Zoey found himself constantly having to wear makeup for daily shootings. This is when his fans and followers often asked him how he maintained good skin and a rather flawless appearance. He saw this as an opportunity to create his own brand and promote a local name. After speaking with several make-up artists and industry leaders, MIKASERIES was born.

The name MIKA stems from the concept of “rezeki” or blessings which Zoey insighted from the angel “Mikhail” or Michael. Holding his spiritual values close to him, he wanted to start his business with a blessed name, not only for him but for all his users, staff and supporters. Armed with a “series” of products behind him, he commercialized and combined the two names into “MIKASERIES”.

Taking on Social Media

Under Zoey’s astute leadership, MIKASERIES has deftly capitalized on the digital landscape, leveraging social media and online marketing to create a community of loyal consumers. The brand’s interactive approach, coupled with innovative product launches and engaging content, has cultivated a loyal customer base while attracting new patrons who resonate with MIKASERIES’ ethos of inclusivity and authenticity.

One of MIKASERIES’ main strategies for expanding its reach has been its strategic presence on multiple platforms. The brand’s availability and early entry on prominent e-commerce platforms like Shopee and Lazada have facilitated its accessibility to a global audience. MIKASERIES ventured into the e-commerce world early, being Lazada and Shopee’s second batch of celebrity squad users.

“Everyone joined the mainstream shift to online platforms like Lazada and Shopee after the COVID-19 pandemic hit. However, MIKASERIES started way before then, and we continue to strengthen our digital marketing capabilities.”

To Zoey, knowledge is key. In the marketing world, he believes knowledge is ever-evolving. “We have to invest in our learning every day, whether that means attending classes or seminars, there’s always something new we need to be up to date with. Everyone can get a social media account and start a business, but without exposure to digital marketing knowledge, you can only get so far.”

A common misconception his brand tends to receive is that its success only comes as a result of Zoey’s popularity and celebrity status. Zoey, however, feels otherwise and believes there’s another larger ingredient behind his brand’s success.

“I view my celebrity status as a bonus point but not the anchor of success. A brand that relies solely on popularity will reach their peak fast, but results drop fast too after 1-2 years, especially if it doesn’t come with investing in knowledge and learning.”

Zoey Rahman

Keeping Up With Trends

Through executing a sustainable strategy that doesn’t rely solely on his celebrity status, MIKASERIES has already garnered over 64,000 followers on Instagram and 100,000 followers on Shopee. His team churns out over 100 parcels daily, the highest reaching 1,000 parcels per day.

Livestreams, which has recently grown in popularity as a common digital marketing tool, is something MIKASERIES utilizes quite abundantly. However, the secret is to keep things interesting and to know what consumers want. With the wealth of information one possesses, Zoey truly believes that the mindset of being informed to keep things interesting is what can set you apart.

More recent milestones his brand achieved in 2023 include being the recipient of the Shopee Super Awards – an award that recognizes brands and homegrown sellers who successfully transformed their businesses by taking livestreaming and affiliate marketing to the next level on the e-commerce platform. Criteria of winners include those who can “push boundaries on innovation and deliver consistent quality.”

Furthermore, MIKASERIES’ partnership with Watsons Malaysia, one of the country’s largest and most renowned drug store chains, significantly enhanced its visibility and availability, making its range of products more accessible to consumers in physical stores.

Fifth Time’s the Charm

Zoey Rahman MIKASERIES
Zoey Rahman is wearing Bajuu by Wardrobe. Photo by Bibo Aswan.

However, the brand’s entry into Watsons was not as easy as Zoey initially thought. “I was rejected four times by Watsons. It was only by the fifth try, that I received an offer from Watsons to supply our brand in their stores. It was not just an offer, but an offer to be an exclusive brand for them. The first thing I did was call my mother and we both started crying over the phone.”

Zoey’s gratefulness for this milestone comes as he sees Watsons as an avenue to elevate local brands. From starting in only a handful of Watsons’ outlets, MIKASERIES’ presence has grown to 150 outlets available in all states across Malaysia. “As a proud Malay Muslim, I see this as a great achievement to get a local brand into Watsons and I know first-hand the difficulty that came with it. There aren’t many local skincare brands available in stores and we are one of the few.”

MIKASERIES’ commitment to innovation has now moved beyond cosmetics. As of July 2023, Zoey introduced their new range of serum (Ultimate Glow Serum), moisturizer (Hydro Waterbank Moisturizer) and sunscreen (Extra Hydrating Sunscreen). He constantly strives to introduce uniqueness to his brand. Drawing inspiration from global brands, he emulates certain looks and approaches to the style of his own brand.

Expanding MIKASERIES

“I want to ensure we have an exclusive, luxurious image but with an affordable price. All our products do not exceed RM 70. I ensure they are not just for the aesthetic but are designed to be comfortable and healthy.” Zoey ensures his team brings creativity to their marketing, whether it be hopping on TikTok trends, conducting product demos, or even dancing online. “You have to know what strategies to deploy to make your content engaging with a strong reach.

Everyone can start a livestream session, but not everyone can keep and grow an audience. You’ll need to know how to not make it boring, what to say, and how to provide vouchers and offers that keep viewers interested. I don’t believe in forced sales, rather, making our content relatable and engaging enough that a user who may come across our page purchases our products just by listening.”

Chasing growth on both physical and online platforms, Zoey believes online and offline sales come together and should complement each other.
• Availability in Watsons: to strengthen their reputation as a trusted local brand.
• Availability on online platforms: to assist with reach and constant engagement with customers.

Navigating Obstacles in the Beauty Industry

Zoey Rahman MIKASERIES
Zoey Rahman is wearing Bajuu by Wardrobe. Photo by Bibo Aswan.

His journey with his skincare and cosmetics brand comes with its fair share of trials and tribulations. He finds it especially challenging when netizens use his image as a beauty brand founder to question his masculinity. Zoey has faced several incidents of backlash and criticisms especially when it comes to the idea of beauty for men. Many netizens have questioned the need for a man (like himself) to talk about beauty and makeup.

He challenges this perception and always asks “Why not?”. “I remain true to what I do. At the end of the day, you can’t have everyone like you. Men must take care of their appearances as well. We want confidence in ourselves and for others to have confidence in us.”

He shares how 40% of his buyers are male. “This shows there is a strong demand. I also give my brand a unisex image so everyone can be comfortable using the products. For example, we use colours that are neutral and the products have a lightweight formula, formulated to address the concern of men wearing makeup, as it provides a natural finish with glowing effects.”

Beauty For Everyone

Aside from gender, Zoey also shares how his customer demographic is gradually expanding beyond the Malay community. The brand has been receiving positive reviews from the Chinese and international communities, proving once again how MIKASERIES is suitable for all genders and races. Zoey will always remind himself of a principle he holds close to his heart, “As a result of working hard, you will reap the benefits. You have to turn a blind eye to these challenges and criticisms which are not constructive and will only hurt you.”

If there’s one advice Zoey would like to share with budding entrepreneurs, it’s to do what you love and bring genuine intention to the work you do. Learning from his own downfalls, he believes failing is a norm in any business and it’s about how one chooses to take those lessons and move forward with them.

He also emphasizes the need to be humble enough to learn. “Send yourself and your team to courses or exhibitions, there’s always knowledge to learn and you can never be too ready for disruptions. Anyone can start a business but it’s about what you do with the knowledge you have.”

A huge part of giving back also means sharing his experience and knowledge with other entrepreneurs. Zoey often gives talks to entrepreneurs on his own life lessons, as well as tricks and trades of the industry.

Future Goals for International Expansion

Looking forward to 2024, Zoey sets his sights on more milestones for MIKASERIES. He teases potential collaborations with big companies and expanding operations beyond Southeast Asia. To achieve this, he says it can’t be done alone. Working with a small capital, he welcomes support from anyone who would like to be part of his journey and grow local entrepreneurs to reach greater heights. He implores everyone to continue challenging conventions in the beauty industry.

As it continues to flourish and redefine beauty standards, MIKASERIES serves as an inspiration, not just as a market leader but as a catalyst for change and inclusivity in Malaysia’s vibrant world of skincare and cosmetics.

Photo Credit

Digital Editor: Lira Jamaluddin

Photographer: Bibo Aswan

Fashion Stylists: Andrea Wong and Mughni Che Din

Clothes: Bajuu by Wardrobe

Makeup and Hair: Aida Jasmeen

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