H&M has been in the news a lot lately thanks to their huge new beauty line, the hype surrounding their highly-anticipated Balmain collaboration, and their mannequins that look like Taylor Swift clones. Another reason they are making headlines doesn’t have to do with collections, but with models. H&M featured their first Muslim model wearing a hijab in one of their campaign videos.
Maria Hidrissi appears in H&M’s Close The Loop video, which promotes sustainable fashion through recycling clothes. The video ties in with the environmentally-friendly denim collection of the same name. Maria appears in the video wearing a gorgeous rust coat, wide-leg pants and white boots. She has accessorized with gold jewelry, round sunglasses, and a check hijab. Maria is standing in the doorway of a shop looking calm, cool and quite fierce. The voiceover describes her as chic, and it is definitely an accurate description.
Maria is 23 years old and began wearing a hijab at 17. She is of Moroccan and Pakistani heritage and currently lives in London. According to Fusion, she was discovered by H&M after they came across her Instagram account. If you want glamorous beauty inspiration, start following Maria ASAP—she regularly posts selfies, nail art, and gorgeous henna designs. She has also recently opened a Moroccan-inspired beauty salon in London called Salon Marrakesh.
When asked about her role in H&M’s campaign video, Maria stated, “It always feels like women who wear hijab are ignored when it comes to fashion. Our style, in a way, hasn’t really mattered, so it’s amazing that a brand that is big has recognized the way we wear hijab.” Now that she is appearing in a campaign video for H&M, the second largest global retailer behind ZARA, it shows that things are changing.
Maria explained that when she was filming the video, the crew were very accommodating to her on set. She was given a private dressing area and they asked about appropriate coverings and limited male interactions. Maria told Fusion that if the photographer noticed that something with Maria’s look needed to be adjusted, he would ask one of the women on set to fix it.
Maria may have received a lot of attention for being the first hijab-wearing model in H&M’s Close the Loop video but the campaign features a diverse mix of people. The minute-and-a-half long clip features an amputee model, plus size models, Sikh men, and a wide variety of different ages and ethnicities. It shows that fashion is a global thing and it includes all ages, sizes, abilities, religions, ethnicities and genders. The Close the Loop video ends with the tagline, “There are no rules in fashion.” We couldn’t have said it better ourselves. Take a look at the campaign video below: