Cover Siti Saleha, Malaysian actress and founder of Güzelim Beauty

The Malaysian actress sits down for a virtual interview with Tatler to tell us all about Lush Jelly, the first release from her new beauty project

Beloved Malaysian actress, Siti Saleha recently launched Lush Jelly, a daily skincare supplement that doubles up as a quick immunity and energy booster under her new beauty brand, Güzelim. 

See also: Chryseis Tan On Starting Her Skincare Brand, LUMI Beauty

This one-of-a-kind jelly shot introduces black seed or habbatussauda as its star ingredient, selected for its ancient healing properties. Historically, habbatussauda was used to treat dyspnea (shortness of breath) and it continues to be recommended today as anti-inflammatory relief for headaches, arthritis and digestive problems. The supplement also contains vitamin C, sakura extract, marine collagen as well as an antioxidant-rich combination of cranberry, pomegranate and blackcurrant. 

The idea behind Lush Jelly came from Siti's personal philosophy that beauty comes within. For years, she tried several different combinations of home remedies to maintain her skin and overall health without disrupting her on-the-go lifestyle. "Being a working woman on film sets for long hours can be tough. You are constantly fighting the battle of trying to look your best, feel your best and just maintain a level of sanity while juggling it all," she shares. 

However, it was only during the pandemic, when her back-to-back shooting schedule was affected by lockdown restrictions, that she was able to bring her idea to life, with the help of a team of nutritionists and local manufacturing company, Tyani.

"Now more than ever, we know that it's important to take care of yourself," she says. 

Why did you choose to name your beauty brand Güzelim?

I wanted to choose a name that was catchy but also meaningful. I had a long list of potential names. One day, my husband (Lutfi Azhar) suggested güzelim, which is what he calls me as a term of endearment. Güzelim means ‘my beautiful’ in Turkish. 

I get so many questions about how to pronounce güzelim—it's definitely a conversation-starter. In fact, I have a really cute video of my friends saying the word, without Googling it beforehand. It's actually pronounced "ghee-you-zay-lim". 

Tell us a little more about the process behind creating Lush Jelly. 

In terms of creating the product and figuring out what ingredients could go well together, it was surprisingly very easy. I knew that I wanted it to be good for the skin, which is why we added sakura extract and collagen, to help with hydration and elasticity from the inside.

But I also wanted the product to boost the immune system and improve gut health. When I first suggested habbatussauda, the team was a little hesitant and I understand why. I've tasted it on its own before and it has quite a strong, pungent taste. But I really wanted to share its benefits with the world. Luckily, it went very well with the berry base.

Throwback: How Siti Saleha Tied The Knot In 4 Picture-Perfect Wedding Ceremonies

How do you take your Lush Jelly shot? 

I usually take mine in the morning before breakfast. The Lush Jelly shot is great at room temperature but it's nice to have it cold too—I keep mine in the fridge because it's so refreshing and it feels like I'm having dessert! 

And it's such a great pick-me-up in the morning, especially with the packaging. I wanted something simple, bright and girly that would make you happy just by looking at it.  When you open the box, it says 'Hello Gorgeous'. The 15 sachets also have 'squeeze me' wordings written along the side, which was something cheeky that I wanted to add. 

Besides your Lush Jelly shot, what else goes into your lockdown self-care routine? 

I've been doing a lot of exercise to keep sane. It helps me get enough vitamin D from the outside. I've also stopped wearing 'house clothes'—no more baggy T-shirts and sweatpants. I put on make-up every other day. I'm at that stage where I can't function without dressing up. 

It's such an unfamiliar feeling to be staying at home for such a long period of time, but I make sure to keep myself busy throughout the day.

See also: Siti Saleha Dazzles In Salvatore Ferragamo's Spring-Summer 2021 Collection

What future plans do you have for Güzelim? 

There's so much more in the works. If all goes well, we can expand into different flavours and textures but for now, I'm so happy that Lush Jelly is already getting such positive reviews and feedback. It's available in Malaysia and Singapore, but I definitely want to branch out more internationally. 

See also: Actor Lawrence Wong's Botanical Skincare Brand Is All The Range Right Now

  • ImagesCourtesy of Güzelim Beauty