She is the first Muslim hijab-wearing woman to be featured in a hair product campaign.
One British woman is making history as the first hijab-wearing woman to appear in a hair campaign.
Amena Khan is a beauty blogger and co-founder of Ardere Cosmetics and is one of the diverse women featured in a new L’Oréal Paris campaign for the Elvive hair product line.
“Whether or not your hair’s on display, it doesn’t affect how much you care about it,” Khan says in the ad.
Khan’s Youtube channel has over 391,000 subscribers, and she posts regular videos of her family life and beauty tips. She is one of the 15 British ambassadors for the new L’Oréal campaign, which features diverse women with all types of hair — curly, kinky, flat, red, etc.
“How many brands are doing things like this? Not many,” she told Vogue UK. “You have to wonder — why is it presumed that women that don’t show their hair don’t look after it? The opposite of that would be that everyone that does show their hair only looks after it for the sake of showing it to others. And that mindset strips us of our autonomy and our sense of independence. Hair is a big part of self-care.”
Though Khan hasn’t shown her hair in public in years, she told Vogue UK that doesn’t mean she doesn’t love styling it and making it smooth and smell nice. After all, does any woman do her hair or makeup solely for other people’s enjoyment?
One of the reasons Khan accepted L’Oréal’s invitation to be involved was to promote diversity and representation.
“I didn’t start wearing a headscarf until I was in my twenties, but even prior to that I didn’t see anyone I could relate to in the media,” she told Vogue UK. “It was always a cause of celebration when you saw a brown face on television!”
She continues, “I think seeing a campaign like this would have given me more of a sense of belonging.”
Though Khan is the first hijab-wearing woman to appear in a hair product advertisement, other brands such as Nike and Covergirl have also featured women wearing the hijab. Hopefully the representation of Muslim women continues to grow!