This week, Madeeha Najeeb explores the world of fashion, beyond religion.
The hijabi blogosphere has been exploding recently, and for all the right reasons I must add. A few years ago, there was much less representation of Muslim women in the beauty and fashion world. Now, these women are not only challenging the hijabi stereotype, but also the cultural stereotypes. Whether it is with makeup, skincare tutorials, or product reviews and hauls, hijabi beauty influencers are smashing the negativity commonly associated with Islamic dress codes, and through their creative content, they are inspiring change.
It is all about the mantra: ‘do not look at what is on top of my head, look at what is inside my head’. Despite hate speech, negative publicity, and even xenophobia, the hijabis are taking the world by a storm. Brands like Nike are also joining the bandwagon by launching a hijab for athletes and even a burkini now. Max Mara, Yeezy, and Ferretti have started using hijabi models in their campaigns.
Muslim women are reigning on various online platforms such as Instagram, Youtube, and Snapchat. A massive diversity of hijabi online bloggers and influencers can be seen wherever you look. These women are doing just fine, and they’re rocking our timelines in the process.
Here are some of our favourite Instagram accounts that you should start following in a heartbeat!
Mariah Idrissi is a British model, public speaker, and influencer. Idrissi gained recognition as the first Muslim hijabi model through Rose’s talent agency Road Casting Kids, appearing in multinational retailer H&M’s “Close the Loop” campaign in 2015; after which, Idrissi became a modest fashion pioneer, appearing on domestic and international news all over the world. In 2016, she started working with the Select modelling agency and signed to Insanity Group Management in 2017.
In May 2016, Idrissi became part of the first Istanbul Modest Fashion Week held in Turkey as a modest influencer. In November of 2016, Idrissi was featured in contemporary modest fashion retailer Aab’s winter season collection. Idrissi has also been featured on a Fenty Beauty campaign, the cosmetics line by Rihanna.
Sebinaah Hussain is a law graduate turned beauty and fashion blogger. Being one of the UK’s top and widely recognised Muslim influencers, she uses her platform to help women feel confident and dress up on trend without compromising on religious values. Sebinaah has also scored some major brand deals recently, including huge names like H&M and Giorgio Armani Si. She has collaborated with many major brands like NYX, BECCA Cosmetics, NARS, Jo Malone, Huda Beauty, and Charlotte Tillbury, to name a few.
In her own words, “I think it’s important to show the women out there, Muslim or not, that you don’t have to be a fashion graduate or designer to be stylish. It doesn’t matter what job you do, you should always aim to look your best when you do it.”
In May 2016, Sebinaah also became a part of the first Istanbul Modest Fashion Week held in Turkey as a modest influencer. She has worked on numerous occasions with the biggest Turkish modest fashion brand, Modanisa. She is a proud mother of two young boys.
Eileen Lahi is an Estonian modest fashion blogger who reverted to Islam about eight years ago. She is 28 years of age and is currently settled in Doha, Qatar.In her own words, Eslimah explains how she embraced Islam and her reflects on the decision to become a Muslim.
“I was raised an atheist, in a country of 1.3 million people, of which Muslims make up merely 0.14%. No mosque. No halal food. And close to zero tolerance towards the religion. However, somehow, by God’s mercy, I found him. For some reason, out of the billions who are wandering blindly, he chose me. Somehow, on the day I said my Shahada, May 14th 2011, we were 12. 12 of us declared ‘Laa ilaaha illa Allah’ one by one, one after the other. And each and every single life changed.“
She is an epitome of fashion beyond religion. She has worked with numerous businesses and is expecting her first baby soon. The businesses she has worked with include the Banana Island Resort, Grand Hyatt, Turkish Airlines, Breitling, Happy Stamp Travel, Raffles Istanbul, and many more hospitality firms
Dubai-based rising star Saufeeya Goodson is proving that modest fashion is rapidly on the rise in the public eye. This part-American, part-Moroccan blogger has her signature piece– a selection of sunglasses, on her face almost every time you spot this beauty. She has been featured in many magazines as a model.
In her words: “I missed Dubai while I was in the States – the culture, the lifestyle, the diversity, the people… it’s very modern over here and the creative industry is really growing. Plus it feels like home. North Carolina is more like countryside. My friend referred to me the other day as a third-culture kid because I’m American and Moroccan, but Dubai is my in-between and home to me.”
This girl is single-handledly putting Pakistan on the fashion blogging map. To be honest there are many other names that have blown up recently, but this girl is one of the pioneers and has been working with a variety of major brands. They include Huda Beauty, Always, Color Studio Pro, and NARS, among others.
She is a makeup artist. She also works with many major Pakistani clothing brands, like Sapphire, Alkaram, and Junaid Jamshed. She is the face of the Modest Abayas brand on Instagram.
She has also worked with Foodpanda, Karachi Eats, Shangrila Sauces, Cocomo, and many other hospitality brands
You can read more of Madeeha’s work on Twitter by following @crazymommyof2, and by following her personal blog on instagram @dia_caxi