Grece Ghanem Is a Fashion Influencer With Actual Influence

Glamour’s Women to Watch series spotlights women who are redefining what it means to be an influencer. Yes, they have “personal brands” and rapidly growing social followings—but in some way, each of these women is pushing the boundaries of what an influencer should look like, act like, or stand for. Their very presence is broadening the scope, which gives them the space to have actual influence: These women are changing conversations, dictating trends, and creating style. And they’re just getting started. 

Grece Ghanem has style. Genuine, intelligent, born-with-it style. It’s the type of style you can’t fake and the type women 30 years younger try to emulate, but somehow it tends to look more authentic on Ghanem, who will be 57 in December. It feels odd to call her an influencer, since the word has become a bit of a punchline, one reserved for 20-somethings who manically post their outfits and their beach waves and their breakfasts and their vacations and their new-parenting tips and their home decor to rack up followers that can help monetize their photos into an actual brand. But with 685,000 followers on Instagram—where Ghanem posts her outfits—that’s kind of what she is. 

Ghanem posts her daily looks, works with brands, and occasionally gives us glimpses into her fitness and beauty routines, but somehow it just feels different. I don’t roll my eyes when I see the blazer she’s wearing is in partnership with, say, Mango—meaning she’s getting paid to promote it to her followers. Instead, I commend Mango for working with a woman whose style makes sense for them. And yes, a woman who was 45 years old when Instagram launched in 2010. 

Becoming a social media influencer wasn’t something Ghanem set out to do, though she does have a deep appreciation for fashion that started young. “I always took good care styling myself and discovering my personal style,” she tells me. “I’d invest in building my wardrobe with quality pieces, and I also loved reading and collecting fashion magazines.” 

Yet Ghanem spent time working in a hospital in Lebanon, where she’d received a master’s degree in microbiology before moving to Montreal 16 years ago and becoming a personal trainer. Not exactly professional fields that call for a tremendous amount of investment pieces or  frequent outfit documentation. But one look at her Instagram page, and you’d think fashion was a space she’d been working in her entire life. 

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