Halima Aden becomes First Model to wear a Hijab in Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue

Ekpedeme Umoh

Ekpedeme Umoh

History has been made as Halima Aden becomes the first Muslim model to appear in Sports Illustrated magazine wearing a hijab and burkini.

A burkini is a type of swimwear that covers the whole body except for the face, hands and feet, with the design intended to respect Islamic traditions of modest dress.

Halima, who is a Somali-American model born in a Kenyan refugee camp reportedly returned to her birth country for the historic photoshoot.

When asked what it meant to her, Aden said, “I keep thinking back to six-year-old me who, in this same country, was in a refugee camp. So to grow up to live the American dream and to come back to Kenya and shoot for SI in the most beautiful parts of Kenya – I don’t think that’s a story that anybody could make up.”

The 21-year-old made headlines in 2016 when she became the first woman to wear a hijab in the Miss Minnesota USA pageant, where she was a semi-finalist.

In 2017 she became the first hijab-wearing model to appear on the front page of a major US magazine, when she featured on the cover of women’s publication Allure.

She has also appeared on the cover of British Vogue.

The 2019 edition of Swimsuit is set to be released on 8 May.



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