L'Oréal Paris has a new hair model, and she’s turning heads for a pretty cool reason. British blogger Amena Khan wears a hijab in her new ad for the brand’s Elvive campaign in the UK, making her the first hijab-wearing woman to front a major hair campaign. Amazing, right?
L'Oréal is just the latest in a string of brands embracing beauty of all types in their ad campaigns. Last year, CoverGirl named YouTuber Nura Afia as a brand ambassador, making her the first woman to appear in a hijab in the brand’s ads. And 69-year-old model Maye Musk broke barriers when she joined the ranks of CoverGirls earlier this year.
Then there's Target, who just announced a denim line made for all shapes and sizes (including those with disabilities). With all these diverse beauties finally breaking into the mainstream scene, it's pretty obvious that the tides are changing when it comes to our ideals of beauty. And it's about time, if you ask Khan!
“They’re literally putting a girl in a headscarf — whose hair you can’t see — in a hair campaign,” she told Vogue UK. “Because what they’re really valuing through the campaign is the voices that we have.”
Wearing her headscarf in the ads feels like a major coup for the blogger, and she's excited L'Oréal is embracing all varieties of beauty. Even before she started wearing a headscarf, Khan said she had trouble finding anyone she could relate to in ad campaigns or media overall. “I think seeing a campaign like this would have given me more of a sense of belonging,” she said.
The blogger covers her hair in public, but when she’s at home, she loves to treat it to some TLC, just like the rest of us. “For me, my hair is an extension of my femininity. I love styling my hair, I love putting products in it, and I love it to smell nice. It’s an expression of who I am,” she said. “And even if that expression is for my home life and my loved ones and for me when I look in the mirror, it’s who I am.”