There is a meaningful quote by author John Kenneth Galbraith that reads,“There is certainly no absolute standard of beauty. That precisely is what makes its pursuit so interesting.” The way each of us looks and who we are on the inside makes us perfectly unique, and when we accept our individual beauty and persona, we become empowered. Take for example, Halima Aden, the stunning Somali-American born teen whose rising star has broken through the stratosphere and old societal boundaries.
Rap icon and fashion designer Kanye West recently cast the 19-year-old beauty to model in her first New York Fashion Week runway show for his Yeezy Season 5 Collection. It was an amazing moment for Halima, as she had just signed with the IMG modeling agency. She showed incredible beauty, strength and poise as she walked the runway wearing a hijab, the traditional covering for the hair and neck worn by Muslim women. Longtime Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour held court in the front row, along with Kim Kardashian West. Social media went wild, applauding Kanye West for embracing diversity and extolling pride for Halima, who has stuck to her beliefs and image as a proud Muslim woman. Kanye West hasn’t commented about his decision to cast Halima Aden for his NYFW show. Instead, he let his actions speak for him.
Meanwhile, the gorgeous young woman has won the hearts of many, including French fashion writer and style star Carine Roitfeld: “Halima is breaking boundaries of beauty and perception by being herself,” Roitfeld told Business of Fashion. “I find this incredibly inspiring, and I know she will be an icon.” While still only a teen, Halima has already left an inspiring footprint in the world of beauty and culture. She was born in a Kenyan refugee camp and moved to the US when she was seven years old. She’s now a freshman at St. Cloud University and recently competed in a beauty contest, so she could defend the strength and intelligence of proud Muslim Women.
Halima Aden became the first contestant in history to wear a hijab during the Miss Minnesota beauty pageant. She also put on a Muslim burkini, a swimsuit that covers most of the body. She made it to the top 15 out of a field of 44. However, she was cut before the finals. Halima Aden feels the support from other women and said this to abc7chicago.com: “My advice to them is just be confident in your own skin, know that an extra layer of clothing does not define your beauty, because beauty is within.”