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Meet the first international hijabi model - Daily News Egypt

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Meet the first international hijabi model

“It is a positive message portraying diversity, and respects the hijab,” says model

A week ago, the world woke up to an exceptional image, a beautiful young lady elegantly posing with her veil. The image in itself was not shocking; yet, the fact that it was included in the highly anticipated international H&M look-book almost stopped the world spinning.

The international high-end fashion brand has been promoting diversity through its continuous campaigns – but this year, the brand decided to create a fuller picture of their target audience as it has included Sikh models, hijabi model, imputes, transgenders, plus-size model, among others.

In light of the current political issues, the look-book has created remarkable attention inside and outside the international fashion scene. The photo shoot targeted the concept of recycling as it promoted the idea of restyling old garments and trends for a contemporary look.

Mariah Idrissi, the beautiful veiled model, instantly became a world sensation; especially in the Arab world, where several young women felt an undeniable connection to her image.

Daily News Egypt talked with the young lady who has been dominating social media’s trend lists, to know more about her background and opinion on the current representation of veiled women in the international fashion scene.

Can you please tell us more about yourself?

My mother is Pakistani, my father is Moroccan and I currently live in London. I am 23, recently graduated in English Literature and I currently part own a salon with my cousin called Salon Marrakesh, whilst looking for a suitable career.


How did you get to H&M in order to become part of their current look-book?

A friend of mine is a scout for models/actors and told me H&M were interested in using me for an advert.


Is this your first modelling experience?

Yes, I have no modelling history other than my selfies on Instagram.


How do you think your image would reflect on veiled women living in foreign countries?

I hope it makes women feel more confident in hijab, and not allow it to hold them back in their careers or ambitions.


In your opinion, what is the main message conveyed through your image?

In regards to the image used for H&M, it is supposed to convey the message of recycling no matter what nationality or religion you come from. It is a positive message portraying diversity, and respects the hijab as we all ensured I was covered correctly according to the Qur’an and Sunnah.


Which brand do you aim to represent or would love to see a veiled women representing?

I would love to represent or see a veiled woman representing Topshop, as I personally shop with them and love their style. Also, it is such a world-renowned company, and it would certainly influence other major brands.


Do you believe veiled women could be included in runway shows soon?

I don’t have an exact answer to this question, however I’m leaning more towards saying no. Simply because I believe hijab is ultimately about modesty not just in appearance but actions too.


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