In Sickness and in Health — How Huda Kattan Proved Her Husband Wrong
Huda Kattan, with her husband and sisters, is the owner of one of the fastest-growing and biggest cosmetic brands in the world — Huda Beauty. It's a family business in every sense of the term.
But, there was a time when she was so obsessed with the business side of things she nearly ruined her family life with her husband, Christopher Goncalo. She was never not devoted to their relationship, but it wasn't apparent.
It took his hospitalization for her to make it completely obvious that she loved him and for him to believe she would not choose business over him.
Huda Kattan’s Husband’s Hospitalization Story
Kattan and Goncalo got married in 2009, and it wasn't until years later that they would also become business partners. In 2013, Kattan launched Huda Beauty, and it became an overnight success.
The success did not come easy, though. Kattan was spending most of her time focusing on the company and how to grow it. This was taking a toll on her marriage with Goncalo.
It almost got to the point where she and her husband got divorced. That came after Goncalo fell sick, got hospitalized, and thoughts went haywire inside his head.
"I'm really obsessed with working – like my dad – and in the beginning, Chris and I almost got divorced," she told Cosmopolitan in 2019 (via Daily Mail). "He got a perforated ulcer and was in the hospital for two weeks."
During this time, according to her, Goncalo thought she was going to leave him.
Huda Kattan with her husband, Christopher Goncalo, in 2000. (Photo: Christopher Goncalo/Instagram)
"I think he thought I was going to leave him and go back to work," she confessed. "but I stood by him every single day."
After that storm passed, however, Goncalo thought of his wife differently. "Family always comes first," she told Cosmopolitan. That saved their college romance, which started around 2000.
Kattan, a finance student, met Goncalo at the University of Michigan-Dearborn when she was 16. They started dating soon after.
She even remembers their first date at an Olive Garden. "I remember when he paid the bill I thought he was such a gentleman," she recalled while talking to Grazia.
Fancy restaurant dates turned into a change of scene in 2006 as they moved to Dubai. Then came their wedding in 2009, and their daughter, Nour Giselle Goncalo, now nine years old, soon after that.
The family still lives in Dubai, where she handles her business from.
Huda Kattan Has Her Husband’s Help in Business
Right when Kattan's Huda Beauty was taking off, Goncalo was having a difficult time with his real estate business in Dubai because the market had just crashed. This gave the couple the idea of merging their ideas into a single company.
So, he left his business and joined her company, which she had been handling with her sisters — Mona and Alya. His entry also became a way to save money for them.
They had been using a third party to do logistics, hemorrhaging money. So, when he came in, they were "able to strategize," and the business grew immediately.
Before this, the company made very little money. So, even her father and mother were helping, packing products and distributing them.
It started as a family business, and it remains so. "I’m the eyes. Mona is the heart and brain. Alya is the legs – she keeps us going. Chris is the muscle who has helped the company become profitable," she said during her sit-down with Vogue Arabia in 2019.
Mona is her business partner, and Alya, who first introduced her to the world of makeup, is the company's social media manager. Goncalo, a man of Colombian heritage, handles the financial side of things.
Huda Beauty is now worth over a billion dollars. Who knows what would have become of the company if the couple had gotten a divorce?