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Author Topic: Are we making hijabi celebrities our new angelina?  (Read 380 times)
jannah
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« on: Jun 20, 2013 10:26 PM »


Really liked this article... can totally relate!!

I think the whole idea of hijab is to get away from products and trying to look like some kind of media ideal.  Following all their tips and we still don't look like any of them, nor can lose all the weight post-no-baby!! D'oh!! -- J.


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It was after my marriage that I decided to wear a hijab in public. Like most others who are evolving on their hijab journey, I had my fears – my biggest one being that it was going to make me look horrendous. After all my hair was my best feature.

To help me on my hijab journey, one of my friends suggested that I look for hijab tutorials, online, so I started googling. This “easy” hijab tutorial told me that to cover my hair and to look good while doing it, I will have to take a piece of cloth, twist it turn it, then “hide the excess,” and finally give it a twirl. Then get a necklace and put it on my hijab. If I were a trained makeup artist and a part time fashion designer then maybe, MAYBE, I would be able to emulate one of them.

Hijab tutorials are praised in general because they encourage new and young Muslimahs to wear the hijab. Or they dispel the misconception that hijabs make us look unattractive and thus encourage women to wear it. However, below is what happens, at least in my case.

STEP 1: You decide to follow the tutorial; after all, they say you can look chic and cover your hair! You have bought the three colored scarves, and twisted and twirled them to no end, and still look nothing like the model in the tutorial. So then you tell yourself, “It must be her makeup.”

STEP 2: Go then to the makeup tutorial (also available as part of the hijab tutorial series): How to look fresh and dewy in “simple” “everyday” steps. All you need to look dewy is buy 17 products of MAC and shimmery shine, and there you are!

So you do that too; now, you have spent about more than half of your (or your husband’s) salary to get the exact products mentioned, and you still look NOTHING like YazTheSpaz. You know why? That’s because she is really thin.

STEP 3 Jump to her weight loss video:

She lost 30 pounds of weight! OMG. I am so following her routine.

After NOT being able to follow her routine or look like her, no matter how hard you have emulated all her tutorials, you feel UGLY.

Sounds familiar? Huh? How is this tutorial any different from the many Western Images of beauty that is being displayed in ads and criticized?

The above ad impels a woman to buy and use a product, believing that after two weeks, she will walk out looking like Yami Gautam – when you, me, and Yami herself know for sure that it’s not Fair and Lovely but genetics (plus makeup plus airbrushing) that makes her look the way they do. In the same way, if it is said that you twist and twirl three hijabs, and place a necklace on top, and then you would look just like Amenakin, you must be kidding yourselves.

Now of course many Muslim women don’t feel they can emulate J Lo or Beyonce. But we can emulate YaztheSpaz and Amenakin. They are the new line of halal celebrities. The fans are obsessed with their pre-post pregnancy weight, their marriage, their flawless skin.

Someone please tell me how different this is from obsessing over Angelina Jolie?

Of all of the body image issues, one of the most threatening is that of the body weight. We/Muslims are proud to repeatedly say that the hijab and a Muslim woman’s modest dressing sense should protect us from the West’s unhealthy obsession with looks. We don’t have to wear shorts, so we don’t need to have the perfect toned legs. We don’t need to “conform” to Western standards of beauty/weight loss.

Why then do we have elaborate tutorials on “How I Lost my Pregnancy Weight?” released as part of hijab tutorials? (On the other hand, the very Western Busy Philips and Amanda De Cadent have a much deeper and well-rounded opinion about our obsession with Pregnant Celebrities. And how pregnancy and childbirth, should be about growing a human being inside of you, and about actually giving birth to your offspring, and NOT about the before and after pictures, or how you look two weeks after giving birth.)

Not to mention the aforementioned “weight-loss” video, which begins with the statement “I lost 30 pounds.”

Is it different for a hijabi to lose weight than it is for non-hijabi? I don’t think so. (Unless it’s about the perils of working out with a hijab.) And why should we all want to lose 30 pounds? Because we want to be super skinny like Gwyenth Paltrow – or one of the hijab tutorial celebrities.

The Western world, is slowly realizing the ill effects of advertising unattainable standards of beauty. Mainstream beauty products like Dove have evolved their marketing strategy; to positively portray “real” women while addressing body image issues.  I can’t be sure if it’s a marketing gimmick, but I enjoy them. I identify with them. Dove gets me.

So if at least some people in the West (yes the horrific West that objectifies women) have started taking measures to raise awareness, and implores people to “Talk to your daughter before the beauty industry does,” then aren’t the hijab tutorials regressive? I really do not want to have to talk to my daughter before a hijab tutorial does.

I am in no way saying that there is one particular way to wear a hijab, neither am I criticizing women who do wear colorful hijabs and want to look pretty while wearing it. I understand, and totally concur with their beliefs. There is also nothing wrong in experimenting with what you wear.

But most of the tutorials do not make a Muslim woman any better than what is so often criticized about our non-Muslim Western counterparts, who are supposedly obsessed with being extremely lean, follow a gruesome workout routine, and stack up on makeup and beauty products, to achieve a level of beauty that is unattainable for most of us.

In my hijab journey, I haven’t felt included or glad, after watching any of the tutorials. All I have felt is that I am not thin enough, or that I really need to run to the makeup store and get a million products, or maybe do a course in designer wear, BEFORE I can look OK in a hijab. And somehow that doesn’t seem right. It doesn’t seem like what Islam is trying to achieve for women. Every person has his or her own hijab journey, and I believe in being patient, inclusive and tolerant about it. I did finally learn to wear the hijab in a manner that I’m comfortable with from my sister-in-law, who doesn’t wear makeup. Not even lip gloss. I have in my own personal way, learnt to deal with my changed appearance in a hijab. I still don’t apply makeup, and haven’t yet seen a concealer. And I think I look pretty enough.

While the real intention of these tutorials is to invite more young Muslim women to wear the hijab and have fun while doing so, some of them take it too far, turning it into a clothed version of everything that’s wrong with media’s depiction of women.

- See more at: http://www.patheos.com/blogs/mmw/2013/06/on-not-living-up-to-the-hijab-tutorial-ideal/#sthash.JgeZ25o2.dpuf
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« Reply #1 on: Jun 20, 2013 11:21 PM »



I love watching hijab tutorials, but I'd never do them myself, the thousand and one pins it takes I'd end up pinning my brain.

I personally also wear hijab because it is simple, if I wanted to spend several hours doing it up and accessorising it, I'd stop wearing it, wearing my hair out would be far simpler and just as if not more attention catching.

Essentially I am lazy and hijab suits my lifestyle, clean hair, skull cap, black hijab (always black colour makes me feel so self conscious!).

My two favourite hijab tutorials;

SEXY HIJAB TUTORIAL


Princess Leia Hijab Tutorial

And when My servants question thee concerning Me, then surely I am nigh. I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he crieth unto Me. So let them hear My call and let them trust in Me, in order that they may be led aright. Surah 2  Verse 186
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« Reply #2 on: Jun 21, 2013 12:30 AM »

I think that the article is a little bit overly harsh, but I fully understand where it's coming from. Loads of those hijab tutorials are really ridiculous, and the styles/attitudes displayed are pretty much unIslamic. I think that Muslims are meant to not be extravagant in their dress - you shouldn't look as though half the catwalk just descended onto your head when you're just walking down the street...and just as the writer pointed out, many are mostly meant for women who are very into makeup/design. I've seen veeery few hijab tutorials that are actually just simple, wearable, everyday styles not involving more than one scarf. Whoop-de-do for the good old pashmina...

P.S. Sis Fozia those are HILARIOUS! I want to find an occasion to try out the Princess Leia one just for the laughs.  Tongue
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« Reply #3 on: Jun 21, 2013 04:45 AM »

Ok Sister Fozia those are HILARIOUS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!   I must be on a different planet but I didn't even know that there were Hijab tutorials... I feel so disconnected and I didn't know about YaztheSpaz and Amenakin and I am kinda happy that I didn't know about them.... Yes, I may have about 40 different hijabs but I wear it the same everyday (am I super lame?)  I love hijab because it gives me a chance to be super colorful and fun and people  label me "bohemian" (without the hijab I think they would be more judgemental  Grin) I don't have to worry about the stupid skinny jeans or any of that super trendy stuff that doesn't flatter my figure. My students remind me everyday that I don't match but they really seem to enjoy my outfits Smiley Please sisters don't conform, hijab is truly a blessing.... 
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« Reply #4 on: Jun 21, 2013 09:19 AM »

Am I sad that I know the women the article has mentioned.

In their own way both sisters mentioned are responsible for bringing hijab and sisters in hijab to the mainstream, they make sisters accessible and down to earth with every day concerns.

To be fair about the losing the post baby weight part, Amenakin was asked by her thousand and one subscribers how she managed it and so she talked about it.

YaztheSpaz (I hate that username), is very Arabian princess in style, I think she appeals to teens and young girls venturing into hijab, I saw her wedding and it was very different to any preconceived notion of a mozlamic wedding.

What I love about the hijab tutorials and the muslimahs on youtube giving advice is that they make up a rainbow of born Muslimahs, reverts, women who have experienced hijab all over the spectrum and from all corners or the globe. I love that hijab & Islam has bought them together, I love the international hijab Posse, they are so cool.

I don't think they pressure girls to look a certain way in hijab they rather show sisters worried about wearing hijab that they will not lose their style and chic because of a hijab rather hijab can enhance it.

I think I ought to join the international hijab posse just to tell the women who do lazy (ie me), that hijab is definitely the way to go for us as well. bahahahahaha

I like the international Hijab Posse, it's lovely to see all these sisters form all over the world who have come together and made good friends via the medium of youtube thro having Islam and hijab in common.

And when My servants question thee concerning Me, then surely I am nigh. I answer the prayer of the suppliant when he crieth unto Me. So let them hear My call and let them trust in Me, in order that they may be led aright. Surah 2  Verse 186
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« Reply #5 on: Jun 21, 2013 02:44 PM »

I gotta be honest and admit that I watch a lot of hijabi vids.  Why?  I don't know.  Probably, the same reason people watch cookery shows of Jamie Oliver, Nigel Slater, Gordon Ramsay to salivate over the food while munching on a microwave meal!  My hijab style is simple and basic: pin underneath the chin which is hideously outdated.  But hey, it's comfy and that's why I'll never snap out of it.  But I like to dream that one day, I'll turn out super chic!

There's a whole community out there, like Fozia said, an international hijabi posse.  You have Dinotokio, Safiyah, Alia, NabilaBee, Amena, Yasthes**z (i hate the name too), Hana Tajima Simpson, and a whole ton more.  It's a really diverse community and I like that.  I notice when I go out into town the new hijabi styles.  I feel like it's having a big influence on the young.  The style right now seems to be to wrap your scarf multiple times round your head - not a good look when you have a tiny round face like me! - everything looks wrong on me.  But I guess women like to look nice and the hijabi tutorials fill that niche.  I think the more pernicious influence is the 'haul' video where youtubers show what they've bought.  Very shallow and materialistic style of video which is about constantly consuming goods and buying more goods.  I suppose outfit of the day vids would fit into that too.  I'm not keen on it. 

I remember going to a conference for Islamic schools in Leicester.  As we all sat in our places waiting for the talk to start, I saw a guy wandering to the top table which had the speakers sat in a row.  He was dressed very simply and I thought he must be the janitor and I thought why are the speakers talking to him?  Turns out he was the main speaker!  He wasn't dressed shabbily, just very simple: navy jumper, trousers and a woolly hat.  I think about that guy and the surprise I felt at my own judgment.  I don't know how this ties in with hijabi tutes but there's a point in there somewhere. 

"Even after all this time, the sun never says to the earth “you owe me”. Look what happens with a love like that, it lights the whole sky." Hafiz
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« Reply #6 on: Jun 22, 2013 10:16 AM »

the first video! lolll!! did anyone see her walking after that putting that stole shop on her head!  I am sure she messed up big time with laws of physics Cheesy There must be some wisdom in our head body proportion being what it is.......
I also like hijab simple. Now thankfully we have those Malaysian hijabs available locally and that saves the mess of wrapping around stoles. stretch....pull down....pull up .....go .
I used to be a big fan of hijab tutorials a few years ago. No more. I have had my fair share of disappointments and therefore I identify fully with this article. Secondly Hijab tutorial focus only on the head part. No one ever talks about the hijabification of the front portions. Even when one wears an abaya the stoles usually end up high enough to ignore the chest completely. Therefore no more hijab tutorials for me!
I have never seen a well endowed women in a state of "HIJAB" unless she is wearing a really loose abaya (that hides her hips and sides) and a large stole that goes over her chest or a 'chador'.
perhaps the only good these tutorials do is attracting large numbers to the  periphery of actual 'hijab' by glamorizing it .  And yes  the thin ones without front and back bumpers to hide away might  benefit from them till they become more blessed Wink
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