Modest-fashion influencer Ascia Al Faraj: I don't consider myself a hijabi
- 18 July 2018
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Modest-fashion influencer and popular blogger Ascia Al Faraj has uploaded a 15-minute video on her YouTube channel in which she declares that it would be “disrespectful” to call herself a hijabi.
The video describes Ascia’s views on modesty and faith, but she quickly disclaims any intention of disrespecting women in hijab. “I don’t consider myself to be a hijabi because it is in line with the view point I have now, approaching 30. It is not the viewpoint that I think is representative of me as a person.”
She continued: “I consider myself in the modest fashion space, and I don’t think there is a ‘take it’ or ‘leave it’ when it comes to dress choice or when it comes to the modest space or when it comes to just being a woman in the 21st century. I feel that it is unfair to get comments like, ‘you either do it right or you don’t do it at all.’”
Ascia started blogging alongside her husband Ahmad as one-half of The Hybrids. Later, she started her own babywear line, named Desert Baby, and now has a huge following of 2.4 million on Instagram. The new video has close to 77,000 views on her YouTube channel and has been viewed more than 360,000 times on Instagram alone.
“I’m tired of being told to take something off because it doesn’t agree with your version of what modesty is. That takes away the autonomy that I have to cover my body in whichever way I see fit. And we have fought for years and years. Women have fought for years and years, and we are still fighting, and will continue fight for years to come to against people telling us what we can and cannot wear, and what we should and should not expose. And If this is what makes me comfortable, and what I’ve chosen to expose to the world, I think that should be OK.”
She goes on to define what exactly her channel is meant to be: “I think my channel should be a safe space for women who don’t necessarily conform to ideas of what a woman’s body should have on display.”
Halfway through the video, she offers a third option for her followers: “The way I was raised was to truly not judge people on what they choose to put on display and what they don’t. And that’s been the truth I have lived for so many years […] If there is anything that you could possibly gain from following me or from participating in any of my social media or any of my channels, [it] would be that you have that option, and it doesn’t necessarily mean it is associated with a religion and it doesn’t necessarily mean that it is not.”
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