Salam Walaikum Halima,
When you competed in the Miss Minnesota USA pageant and proudly served looks in a hijab and a burkini, I was like, “Yass queen!” When you were signed your way into supermodel stardom, I was like, “Yasss QUEEN!” Now that you’re the very first hijabi in history to grace the cover of Vogue magazine, I was like, “YASSSS QUEEN!” with happy tears. This is the best Eid present ever and Ramadan just started!
I can’t even begin to explain how exciting this is! Someone who looks like me is on the cover of a mainstream fashion magazine. I know young Muslim girls will love the skin that they’re in and not be afraid or ashamed to accept their identity. If anyone questions that, you’ll be the reason why they fire back with confidence. Because of you, I have this sense of hope that Muslim women will be accepted for how they choose to dress and who they are.
As someone of East African descent, I now have someone to relate to and that I can call a fashion icon. I know when I flip open a fashion magazine, I’ll know that me dressing modestly will be okay when I see you (and insha’Allah, future hijabi models that you inspired) proudly serving looks. That’s why representation matters.
You’ve paved the way for women of color and Muslims like me. Women of color are rising. Muslim women are rising. We’re making history and we’re not stopping. Thank you Halima for being yourself and putting yourself out there. You’re going places, so don’t stop slaying!
Ahlam and the #MuslimGirlArmy