Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

Clothing giant makes history by starring its first hijab-wearing model

hijab-hm.JPG

Fashion has taken a giant foot forward in bringing more diversity to its campaigns thanks to H&M's latest advert, which features a hijab-wearing model for the first time in the clothing giant's history.

Mariah Idrissi, a 23-year-old Londoner of Moroccan and Pakistani descent, is seen modelling wide-legged trousers, an oversized blazer and a matching printed scarf worn as a hijab in the 30-second video about recycling clothes.

“It always feels like women who wear hijab are ignored when it comes to fashion,” she tells Fusion. “Our style, in a way, hasn’t really mattered, so it’s amazing that a brand that is big has recognised the way we wear hijab.”

While she appears alongside many often marginalised demographics, including Sikh men and a woman with unshaven armpits in the campaign for H&M's sustainable clothing collection, Idrissi has been garnering the most attention from it from Muslim bloggers and the British media alike.

“I honestly have no idea why,” she continues. “It might be because hijab fashion has boomed in the last few years and to finally see a hijabi [a woman who wears a hijab] in mainstream fashion is a big achievement.”

Mariah Idrissi in H&M's campaign

Mariah Idrissi in H&M's campaign

When Idrissi was approached by a model scout to feature in a new campaign for the Swedish retailer, the 23-year-old was skeptical. “Are you sure they know I wear a hijab?” She's been wearing one since the age of 17 and has attended Islamic school for 10 years.

Speaking about the idea that the hijab is a symbol of oppression, she says, “Some people think it's great that women can be beautiful and wear a hijab, and others think they're forced to wear it. I'm quite thick-skinned though, so if people did say anything to me, I wouldn't notice it anyway.”

Idrissi highlighted the differences that are important when modelling as a Muslim woman. “[H&M] asked how much in terms of neck I could show...they were very respectful.”

“If the cameramen noticed something not quite right, they would call a woman over to fix me, it was sweet,” Idrissi says. “One of the watches was dangling in the wrong way, and rather than just twisting it on my wrist, the cameraman asked a woman to come over. It just showed that little bit of respect.”

Taking a stroll and realising this council really needs to fix up. #ThemTouristPoses #Morning

A photo posted by Salon Marrakesh London (@mariahidrissi) on

Idrissi is no stranger to modelling having amassed over 7,000 followers on Instagram for demonstrating inventive ways of styling a hijab.

She's also launched a Moroccan-inspired beauty salon in London, Salon Marrakesh, which specialises in henna application, Moroccan massages and Halal manicures. 

Follow her at @mariahidrissi.

#BerlinWall

A photo posted by Salon Marrakesh London (@mariahidrissi) on

Related

rexfeatures_4786701f.jpg

Marion Cotillard: “I am not a feminist - it creates separation”

And So To Wed autumnal flower crown.JPG

The best autumn wedding ideas from Instagram

banksy.JPG

Banksy's Dismaland to be turned into refugee shelters in Calais

ThinkstockPhotos-494237549.jpg

“Stop asking me when I'm going to start a family”

rexfeatures_5158286s.jpg

Helen Mirren: “I hate the word beautiful”

Period Party 5.jpg

The Lammily doll now comes with Period Party sanitary towels

meat.jpg

Meat eaters should be treated like smokers, says vegan MP

rexfeatures_4448577mj.jpg

Jennifer Aniston will be keeping her maiden name in marriage

rexfeatures_5074103w.jpg

How do people really feel about age gaps when dating?

Comments

More

Don't buy any new shoes before you see these runway trends

Your favourite new kicks by Anna Pollitt

27 Sep 2016

Why this £70 coat from Zara has gone viral

We bet you've seen someone wearing it by Sarah Biddlecombe

27 Sep 2016

Daily outfit inspiration with our look at the best dressed A-listers

Casual dressing ideas from stylish celebrities

27 Sep 2016

The Stranger Things cast are collaborating with Louis Vuitton

The top secret project will be revealed soon by Sarah Biddlecombe

26 Sep 2016

Monki’s feminist campaign celebrates periods, masturbation, and more

The #monkifesto is taking a stand for women everywhere by Kayleigh Dray

26 Sep 2016

Milan Fashion Week street style

Stunning outfits outside the shows

25 Sep 2016

Front row stars at Milan Fashion Week

It's all about Serena Williams and Anna Dello Russo

25 Sep 2016

Milan Fashion Week blog

Highlights from the shows

25 Sep 2016

Street style looks from the Stylist team

New York, London, Milan and Paris...

24 Sep 2016

Gigi Hadid attacked by stranger and immediately blamed for it

She's labelled aggressive, attacker is called a fan by Anna Pollitt

22 Sep 2016