10 Muslim Beauty and Style Influencers You Should Know
Hari Raya Puasa, or Eid al-Fitr, is possibly the most important religious holiday celebrated by Muslims around the world. Not only does the occasion mark the end of Ramadan fasting, but it is also a period for people and families to take stock of the year and show appreciation to their loved ones.
And here’s another way for us to celebrate Muslims around the world: Beauty and style influencers. From trailblazers like hijab model Halima Aden, to local beauty blogger Sahur Saleim, these are some of the talented and creative women you should be following on social media right now.
Text: Ho Guo Xiong and Kayce Teo
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1. Manal Chinutay
Her Instagram handle is her last name @chinutay, and Manal is a beauty blogger who has her own brand, Chinutay & Co, which sells scarves that can double as hijab. We love how her IG feed is lifestyle-oriented, yet it also gives great material for makeup look inspirations. Her Youtube channel has a good mix of makeup tutorials—from how to draw a proper winged eyeliner to achieving the perfect ombre lip—and skincare how-tos, which are easy to follow and digest.
2. Halima Aden
She has been hailed as a trendsetter and breaking barriers by being the first model to wear a headscarf and burkini (burqa + bikini) for the cover of Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit issue. But Somali-American model Halima Aden has not always had it easy. She was born in a refugee camp in Kenya and only moved to the USA when she was six. She then participated in the Miss Minnesota USA pageant in 2016, drawing attention for being the first woman to wear a hijab there. She was signed to international agency IMG Models a year later and has since walked for numerous designers and posed for the covers of renowned fashion publications.
3. Amena Khan
British influencer Amena Khan is known for her makeup and fashion tutorials on Youtube, which sees averages of five- to six-digit views per video. She has an Instagram following of 625K and 408K Youtube subscribers, which puts her in the macro-influencer range, just a tier away from A-list celebrities’ following. She’s the first hijab-wearing model to collaborate with L’Oréal Paris on a hair campaign in 2018 but had to pull out of it after she attracted backlash when her past tweets (in 2014) that criticised Israel resurfaced. Whatever the case, we dig her beauty and style looks and practical Youtube tutorials. She even has her own clothing line called Pearl Daisy, which sells hijab and other clothing and accessories.
4. Vivy Yusof
Vivy Yusof is known for her bold yet elegant fashion choices. She started out as a blogger first, sharing details about her life, and subsequently used the platform to discuss her entrepreneurial journey after setting up businesses with her now-husband Fadzarudin Shah Anuar. Amongst them are fashion e-tailer FashionValet and The dUCk Group. The latter is noteworthy because it started as a fashion label selling scarves and has since grown to include cosmetics and home and living products. Fans of dUCk don’t need to cross the Causeway to get your hands on its signature scarves though. The label opened its first Singapore store in Haji Lane last November.
5. Rumena Begum
Follow influencer Rumena Begum for a variety of beautiful and fun looks. She’s based in London and of British and Bangladeshi descent. Her step-by-step Youtube tutorials are easy to follow and she uses a mix of accessible beauty products. She also has her own beauty brand, which has a range of highlighter and eyeshadow palettes and liquid lipsticks that ships worldwide.
6. Noor Neelofa Mohd Noor
She’s a jet-setting media personality who is often seen at fashion weeks around the world, rubbing shoulders with the best in the industry. But model, actress and TV host Noor Neelofa Mohd Noor had a humble beginning. She wanted to study in the United States but her parents disapproved, so she ended up pursuing her studies at Sunway University. She didn’t finish it though, getting her start in the industry after winning a local teen beauty contest. Now, she has an impressive six million followers on Instagram, which she has steadily achieved with her unique brand of stylish #ootds. Her popularity has also led her to do social media posts for jeweller Swarovski. But that’s not all there is to her—Neelofa has also started her own hijab label Naelofar Hijab in 2014 and her products are reportedly sold in 38 countries. Forbes Asia recognised her success and business savviness and naming her as one of Forbes 30 Under 30 Asia in 2017.
7. Habiba Da Silva
UK-based beauty influencer Habiba Da Silva is of Brazilian and Lebanese heritage. She has 858K followers on Instagram, and close to half a million subscribers on Youtube, which puts her alongside fellow influencer Amena Khan in the macro-influencer tier in terms of popularity. The 23-year-old has worked with brands such as Rimmel and even has her own fashion label which sells scarves exclusively. We love how there’s a good mix of heavier makeup looks (like the Kardashians, if that’s the aesthetic you’re going for) and bare skin posts on her IG feed.
8. Hanis Rohayat
Despite being only 26-years old, Hanis Rohayat has carved out a name for herself in the modest fashion scene. Married and a mother of an infant son, Hanis started a business called Meem Clothings when she was just 17. She had experimented with different things, from designing on shoes to tie-dying clothes to sell to people, before finally settling on designing beautiful ethereal scarves which drew inspiration from her travels around the world. The premium printed scarves are in themed collections inspired by locations such as Dubai, Rajasthan and Maldives, and are mainly for hijab-wearing Muslim women, although they can be worn as a regular shawl too. The homegrown label shows no sign of stopping—its collections have been shown on runways in Tokyo and Dubai.
9. Sahur Saleim
It’s not just global Muslim beauty influencers who are making waves around the globe. Local makeup artist Sahur Saleim, who has over 292K followers on her Instagram account @sahursart, has had her work featured in international media such as the UK’s Daily Mail and Marie Claire magazine. The winner of the Beauty Content Creator of the Year award at the 2018 Zalora Style Awards is not afraid to show her bare skin and bring you through her makeup look step by step.
10. Maria Alia
Muslim-American influencer Maria Alia is one of the rare few who can demonstrate that it is possible to make street style elegant and contemporary. She has collaborated with major brands such as American departmental store chain Macy’s and Adidas’ Yeezy line for social media posts to raise awareness amongst her followers that these labels are a sartorial option for modest fashion adherents. With a creative eye that blends a mix of modern and vintage pieces that are made even cooler with a suave, effortless attitude, it’s no wonder the half-Puerto Rican has attracted more than 400K followers on Instagram. Take this monochromatic outfit for example, where she showed off an animal-printed jacket that was paired with camel-hued wide-legged trousers and finished with a pair of slick cat-eye sunglasses.