An Iranian woman tests the colours of make-up at an upscale shop in north Tehran in this November 8, 2003 file photo. REUTERS/Morteza Nikoubazl
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When Dubai businesswoman Negin Fattahi-Dasmal opened the first branch of her luxurious nail salon chain in Iran this year, it was met with both excitement and skepticism among image-conscious young Iranians. Despite – or perhaps partly because of – strict Islamic dress codes, cosmetics sales in Iran are among the highest in the Middle East.Iran's fashion-forward 20-somethings have kept up with global trends on social media and travels abroad, skirting diplomatic isolation and domestic repression.Some of those luxury fashion brands are now entering Iran directly, and there could be similar opportunities for beauty and cosmetics – a market estimated by Iran's parliament's research center to be worth more than $4 billion a year.Fattahi-Dasmal is not deterred, and is even considering exporting another of her brands to Iran.
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