DUBAI: From Somali-American star Halima Aden to lesser known beauty Amina Adan, hijab-wearing models and beauties of Arab descent are taking Milan Fashion Week by storm.
Both models walked for Max Mara in the brand’s Autumn/Winter 2018 show on Thursday, alongside such fashion stars as Gigi Hadid and Cindy Crawford’s daughter, Kaia Gerber.
Aden sported a silky headscarf and skirt-and-trousers combination while Adan, who was raised in Denmark, showed off a grey checkered blazer paired with a black leopard-print scarf.
After the show, Adan took to her Instagram page to thank Max Mara for the experience, posting: “Thank you for this amazing experience, @maxmara.”
Far from being the only Muslim models to take Milan by storm, the pair were joined in the fashion-forward city by models-of-the-moment Gigi and Bella Hadid, both of whom walked in a variety of shows, including Missoni, Versace and Alberta Ferretti.
For her part, Imaan Hammam, a Dutch model of Egyptian and Moroccan descent, walked the runway for Versace on Friday, dressed in a figure-hugging, belted black mini-dress.
However, despite the two hijab-clad models and litany of international names garnering praise from pro-diversity fashion insiders, some critics are slamming Italian fashion house Gucci for outfitting white models with headscarves and turbans in the brand’s Feb. 22 show.
Actor and model Avan Jogia sparked debate on Twitter after he tweeted a photo of a white model wearing a turban, saying: “Yo, @gucci... I mess with you guys... but this isn’t a good look for you... could you not find a brown model?”
Meanwhile, fashion photographer Faiyaz Kolia told Indie magazine that “Gucci got to pick and choose from cultural imagery all the things that are aligned to their ‘fantasy’ narrative without any consequences, and then so easily put on white skin… What message does that send? That it’s ok to wear a hijab if you’re young, beautiful, rich, and white but not if you’re actually a Muslim or a person of color?”