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Don’t Sleep On These Lebanese Designers

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By now, everyone is familiar with names like Elie Saab, Zuhair Murad, Reem Acra, and Georges Chakra, who have built global businesses on extravagant wedding dresses and couture gowns worn on virtually every international red carpet ever. But there’s a whole crop of talented Lebanese designers who don’t specialize in five-figure gowns that are equally worthy of your attention.

Rym Beydoun, Super Yaya 


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Lebanese-born, Côte d’Ivoire–raised Rym Beydoun launched her brand Super Yaya in 2015. The contemporary Africa-based label initially started out as an e-commerce site, where people could create their own customized pieces. After finding it challenging to juggle both the website and her own brand, the designer decided to create the Super Yaya 100% and 100% Africosmic T-shirts and sell them for a couple of seasons instead— and they were immediate hits. In addition to the slogan shirts, Super Yaya also stands out for its candy-colored sets and ultra-feminine, bow-infused dresses.

Cynthia Merhej, Renaissance Renaissance 

Cynthia Merhej, the Lebanese designer behind Renaissance Renaissance launched her label in Beirut in 2016 after studying Visual Communication at the Royal College of Art and Central Saint Martins in London. Growing up in Lebanon surrounded by multiple generations of female couturiers, Merhej naturally developed a passion for the industry. An LVMH Prize finalist and the 2023 Fashion Trust Arabia winner, Merhej is known for creating timeless, immaculately-constructed pieces made with sustainability in mind.

Eric Ritter, Emergency Room Beirut


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Launched in 2018 by Lebanese designer Eric Mathieu Ritter after working in a luxury fashion house, Zuhair Murad, Emergency Room Beirut is built on ethical elements like upcycling, locally sourced material, and the welfare of craftsmen and tailors. Each of the brand’s one-off garments is handmade exclusively from locally sourced deadstock fabric and second-hand clothes, placing localism and environmentally conscious practices at the core of the brand and reassuring consumers that their purchases aren’t causing unnecessary damage to the environment.

Nadine Merabi


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The Lebanese-British designer specializes in ready-to-wear you can mix and match and wear from day to night, with prices ranging from $100 to around $700. Central to Merabi’s aesthetic is a mix of couture-level details—like hand-placed sequins, beading, feathers, and embroideries, with sharp tailoring and daring silhouettes. Her glamorous creations have found fans in a number of high-profile stars, including Maya Jama, Ashley Graham, Rita Ora, and Sofia Vergara, who have all been spotted wearing the London-based designer’s sequin dresses and ultra-flattering jumpsuits.

Gadir Rajab & Raquelle Saba, Raga Malak


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Raga Malak was co-founded in Beirut in 2019 by best friends Gadir Rajab and Raquelle Saba. Due to political and economic unrest, the designers relocated to Melbourne to continue creating their subversive, Y2K-inspired ready-to-wear collections infused with details and techniques drawn from the designer’s Lebanese roots. From asymmetrical candy-colored pink chiffon dresses to some of the most covetable corsets to live on the internet, Raga Malak’s clothes are just the kind of inherently cool, nostalgia-filled creations that feel of the moment.

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