Ottawa, ON., May 5, 2022 — When Fawwaz Ibrahim moved to Canada at age 16, he never imagined himself being an athleticwear aficionado. As a matter of fact, adjusting to a Canadian lifestyle was no easy feat for him either, but the one thing that kept him afloat during his immigration journey was fitness.
“I used to be that scrawny kid, but one day I went to the gym and decided to embrace my underdog mentality and made a commitment to go to the gym every day,” says Ibrahim. “Coming from my background, I never really had the opportunity to be as physically active as I did when I moved here.”
Ibrahim recalls looking at himself in the gym mirror after a few years of working towards his fitness goals and being shocked at the new man that was staring back at him. Although that might sound like the happy ending to his story, it was really just the beginning of a long journey of self-discovery that would be challenged by the many woes of the pandemic.
In April of 2020, Ibrahim graduated from the University of Ottawa with a degree in civil engineering, specializing in structural and geotechnical design and analysis. While this was an achievement to be celebrated, he struggled with finding personal happiness between continuing to adjust to Canadian society and being unable to exercise and pursue a healthy lifestyle due to pandemic gym closures.
After throwing his career fate into the hands of job openings that didn’t seem to be giving him much in return, Ibrahim decided to take his career into his own hands. Little did Ibrahim know, his experience in working with design opened up innate creativity valves that helped him to launch his own athleticwear brand: in September of 2021, Flawless Athlete was born.
“The brand started as a social media page before we officially launched our online store,” says Ibrahim. “I needed to start somewhere – I did a ton of research, made a bunch of mistakes and spent a lot of my savings, but at the end of the day the work needed to be done one way or another.”
The Flawless Athlete brand began as a passion project, and its mantra was to motivate people to wear items that made them feel uplifted and encouraged them to be the best version of themselves when exercising. This social media-driven brand has metamorphosized into what is now an online store with seven items currently available for sale – one of which being squat-proof scrunch shorts for women made from polyester and spandex to improve performance and comfort.
One of the key pillars of the brand is sourcing quality materials that hug the body of the athlete wearing Flawless Athlete products: “making sure anything we put out there is quality and anyone that pays for an item has no reason to return it is one of our main goals,” says Ibrahim.
Ibrahim has enjoyed being a part of the design phase of each and every one of his products and looks forward to launching more into the future. His vision for the brand is simple: to be one of Canada’s premier sports brands that doubles-up as a community for people like himself – new immigrants that might need some hope and inspiration as they embrace Canadian society.
Although Flawless Athlete materials are currently sourced from a variety of suppliers, Ibrahim goal is to find more suppliers in Canada to bring more work into the country and to hire domestically in support of growing the Canadian economy. He believes strongly in Canadians supporting Canadians, which is embedded in the community the brand has set out to build.
His support for Canadians in the athletics industry doesn’t stop there: “I also like to highlight up and coming athletes that have plans to go to the Olympics – including Canadians and Canadian immigrants, to show how great they are doing.”