The brand thought she might limit their audience.
Mariah Idrissi was scouted because of her hijab, but she says she’s also lost work because of it.
The model (and former Emirates Woman cover star) said in a recent interview on the UK’s ITV News that a beauty campaign she was involved in fell through at the last minute.
When asked what the issue was, the brand in question said they thought Idrissi’s hijab would limit their audience.
“There was a very big deal that was about to go through, and one of the outlets that needed to sign it off refused on the basis that ‘We think Mariah wearing a hijab is going to limit the audience, because she’s a Muslim,'” Idrissi explains on the show.
“I was quite shocked… [it was] nothing to do with my personality, just the fact that I wear a hijab, they thought their audience wouldn’t buy the product.”
Idrissi, who says the deal was for a collaboration with a beauty brand she doesn’t name, says she finds that odd.
“Well I buy things that white girls are wearing, it makes no difference,” she tells the ITV hosts.
Here’s the full clip, via the Daily Mail:
Idrissi was tapped for an H&M campaign in 2015, becoming the brand’s first hijabi model.
Since then, she’s become a face and voice for modest fashion, and covered our last September issue.
This April, she joined UK organisation Islamic Relief in support of their campaign against violence towards women.
Idrissi, who was last in Dubai in March to shoot a Namshi campaign, is well aware of the responsibility she holds as a high-profile Muslim woman.
“One lady messaged me and told me she was from a small village in France and in that area they didn’t hire girls in hijabs to work in their retail stores,” she told Emirates Woman last year.
“Once people saw the H&M campaign they protested outside shops demanding they be hired – and it worked. That was a really nice story for me to hear.”
Images: Mariah Idrissi/Instagram