Simply Zeena Winter 2014
Salaams my lovelies! I hope you are doing well inshallah and that you are having a nice Friday! I typically do a Follow Friday post, but today, I wanted to make it a Fashion Friday post because I am just over the moon in love with a modest fashion clothing line that I am sure that you will love too. Have you heard of Simply Zeena? For some reason, I had heard of the line, but I never had the time to really browse and shop their site online. Another one of the challenges of online shopping is that you just don’t know how something will drape or look on you unless you try it in person. I was lucky enough to have the chance to meet the ladies of Simply Zeena at the Fashion Fighting Famine San Francisco show and see their Winter 2014 collection in person.
The Simply Zeena 2014 Winter Collection is an array of extremely wearable and flattering pieces that can work for anyone looking for a modest wardrobe that is polished and chic. As a working hijabi mom, I need quick pieces like the ones in this collection to put on and go yet still look polished. I love that the materials are wrinkle resistant because who really has the time to iron? Not me! But I also still want to look elegant and professional and Simply Zeena allows me to look my best. I personally bought the purple hoodie and the Audrey which is a classic top in the making. When I wore the Audrey, I felt as elegant as the iconic Audrey Hepburn. I paired it with slim fit black pants, ballet flats and I know I got a ton of compliments from Muslims and non Muslims alike. A mom at Trader Joe’s actually stopped me and asked, “Where did you get that cute top?” I was so happy to share my fashion secret with her and with you. Simply Zeena has clothing for anything you may need. They even sell modest active wear and swim wear. I was super excited to see that.
Online Browsing: Their site is super easy to navigate to find what you need and more. They have a super easy to locate top navigation bar that can take you directly to clothing that are Basics, Activewear (as a gym buff, I LOVE that they have modest activewear), and other categories that make sense for easy shopping.
While Simply Zeena is an online shopping destination, I can’t really give you the good details on how fast shipping is, or the buying experience, etc. However, that gives me a great excuse to go and buy more online. I will let you know how my next pieces come and how the true online shopping experience is. In the meantime, if you have bought from Simply Zeena, what did you think? Share your comments below!
Salaams my lovelies! As you know, the winter season is fast approaching. Which means there will be plenty of time for beautiful jackets, sweaters, and scarves. However, winter also means having to deal with dry chapped winter skin too. The part of the body that bears the brunt of winter’s harshness is your hands. From the cold whipping winds, and the dry harsh heat of indoor heating, the thin skin of your hands can get dry, scaly, and start to hurt. Since the hands and face are the parts of the body that practicing hijabis expose the most, it makes sense that those areas may need the most TLC. Here are some tips to keep those hands looking pretty year round:
Wear gloves when you can:
In the winter, there are still some crazy people (for example me) that sometimes refuse to wear gloves. However, gloves serve as the first barrier of protection for the sensitive skin on your hands from the elements. In fact, women up until the early 1900s used to wear gloves year round (even in the summer) because those ladies knew that the secret to youthful beautiful hands was to keep them out of the sun! Knowing myself, I still won’t wear gloves in the summer or spring, but I will most likely embrace them more this winter.
Use a hand cream:
Carry a hand cream that you know you will use regularly. I promise you that if you like using it, you will be more likely to use it when you need it. I used to adore the L’Occitane hand cream, but then I discovered this hand cream called Tocca Crema De Mano in Cleopatra. It is the freshest hand cream fragrance I have ever smelled! It’s a mix of pomegranate and cucumber and while that sounds like an odd combination, this smells like a garden after a refreshing rain shower. Just the smell alone gets rid of my winter blahs!
Shape nails weekly
It is recommended in Islam to clip your nails weekly. I prefer to actually shorten my nails by shaping them with a nail file because it prevents nails from getting fractured or broken.
I hope these tips keep your hands looking beautiful all season long! What are your tips for nice hands?
Nuralailalov is a hijabi makeup vlogger who translates extreme makeup looks into wearable looks
Salaams my lovelies! I apologize for not blogging as often, but between my regular day job, consulting, and handling a toddler, I am BEAT. I really do love blogging and want to keep this blog as a nice gathering place for you all. So I only try to make blog posts I feel are beneficial versus making my blog a place to rant and rave ha. It is Friday, which means it is time for a sneak peek into the lives of some of our hijabi social media darlings.
Today, I wanted to write about Nura Afia, aka Nuralailalov. Nura Afia is a hijabi makeup vlogger on YouTube. Nura is a testament to the fact that you can be a glamorous hijabi mom. While I may not be able to live up to that, it is nice to see another hijabi be able to juggle motherhood, working, and look amazing doing it mashallah! Her videos are not only makeup tutorials, they also are reviews on the hottest makeup products, hijab tutorials, and just fun snapshots into her life as a friend, mom, and wife.
I personally love her makeup tutorials as inspiration for ideas like how to contour and do dramatic looks for special events. Make sure to follow her on Instagram @Nuralailalov for short video tutorials as well.
Be on the lookout for a recipe post coming your way inshallah! Have a wonderful day and jumah mubarak!
Saman Munir is a Canadian vlogger who teaches hijabis to be beautiful inside and out.
Salaams my lovelies! Jumah mubarak to you all. It is Friday, which means another Follow Friday post. Today, I want to feature Saman Munir from Saman’s Makeuphijabs YouTube channel. Not only is she beautiful to look at, she is also a hijabi fashion vlogger who teaches her fellow hijabis how to not only look their best, but feel their best too. This hijabi fashionista is also a full time mommy and part time hijab stylish and makeup artist. If you have a chance, check out her Instagram account @makeuphijabs for the most beautiful hijabi style inspiration. She has an eye for putting together colorful yet feminine outfits that anyone can try. I call her style accessible elegance.
What I love the most about Saman Munir is her ability to connect with her viewers in her YouTube videos. While her chiseled features makes her beauty especially striking, she shares personal stories of her own struggles such as being considered the ugly duckling in her family, or her weight gain/loss journey that allow her viewers to be able to relate to her. In the end we are all the same like most hijabi vloggers, but Saman Munir has this uncanny ability to make viewers feel like she is a hijabi next door that they can have chai with and ask beauty/hijab advice.
Her online tutorials are especially helpful. If you ever need help with styling a difficult yet beautiful hijab like the Neva hijab, make sure to check out her fool proof tutorials. Her makeup tips are also easy to follow and she uses tools that most women possess (which is helpful since Sephora is like a sticky fly trap for me). I really love that her looks are never too extreme and that they always look pretty. On top of having a YouTube Channel and an amazing Instagram account, Saman Munir also sells hijabs and accessories online too. What a Wonder Woman mashallah!
Make sure to check out Saman Munir and let me know what you think!
Noor Tagouri aspires to be the first hijabi news anchor on a major US network
Salaams my lovelies! Jumah mubarak to you all. As you know, I typically do a Follow Friday blog post on a hijabi’s Instagram account that I adore. Well I know I have blogged about Noor Tagouri before, but her Instagram account just begs to be followed. Why is that, you ask? She is a globe trotting, fearless example of a hijabi who is trying to show the best side of our faith to others. Whether she is studying domestic violence in Italy, or going on speaking engagements, Noor Tagouri’s Instagram account can serve as a inspiration to empower other hijabis to be active in their communities.
She is also beautiful too mashallah! However, she is not just a pretty face. What really strikes me is the beauty of her actions. You can really see her trying to understand where others are coming from. I feel like this is an essential quality of news anchors. If you look at the most popular news personalities, it is not their looks that make them successful, it is their ability to relate with the people that they are interviewing to get them to open up about their lives. I think Noor Tagouri will follow in those footsteps and really shine as a news anchor inshallah.
Her Instagram account is @ntagouri. Make sure to follow her for your own daily dose of community activism.
For scenes in my own daily life on food, fashion, and family, feel free to follow me @hijabilife too.
Indian actress Nandita Das is trying educate others about how all skintones are beautiful
As a child of Bangladeshi parents who are enlightened, I was fortunate enough to avoid ugly moments of shadism (when ethnic groups prefer individuals with a specific shade of skin color). While some of you may laugh, in the Indian subcontinent, it is almost second nature. I hear comments that I try to shield my daughter from such as: “Oh no! She is getting dark from the sun, don’t let her lay ouside!” “Wow mashallah, she is getting fairer and fairer every day.” These comments break my heart, but even I am not immune. I remember how when I first got engaged, there was so much commentary on how I was not “fosha” (Bengali term for fair) compared to my mother in law and sister in law. You can imagine how hearing those comments not only broke my heart (What about the fact that I tried to be a good person, or that I just passed the bar exam to be an attorney?), but I somehow let it seep into my subconscious. I am guilty of using lighter filters on Instagram to appear lighter. I am guilty of using a few shades lighter of foundation too.
While it is embarrassing to admit these things to you readers, I want to let you know that I am human too. When we hear things over and over again, you start to believe it even if it is not true. That is why it is important for us to break this cycle NOW. I don’t want my daughter growing up thinking that her only value in life is attached to her skin color or even how she looks. I want her to understand that how her SOUL is will truly be the test of true beauty inshallah.
While I commend Nandita Das for her Dark Is Beautiful campaign, I also want to point out that the opposite is true too. In the United States, tan is considered the ideal. Why else do you see so many women going tanning or spending so much money on bronzers and sunless tanners? So we have to be mindful not to make fair skinned folks feel less than pretty too. Why can’t we all be considered beautiful? It was funny this topic popped up on Fashion Fighting Famine’s Instagram page because last night I posted a picture of myself without any makeup after a yoga class. I have to admit, it was really scary to share it, but I wanted my followers to know what I really look like versus what can be stylized images.
We are all human at the end of the day. So let’s try to be beautiful in our humanness together inshallah.
Who doesn’t want to wake up with fresh radiant skin that is blemish free? While we all know that makeup can work wonders, I am one of those hijabis who would prefer not to cake on the makeup in order to look good. Why can’t my skin just be as is? That being said, sometimes our skin does not always cooperate. This is when I turn to face masks depending on the skin issue I have.
This summer for me was the summer of face masks. I always feel like the masks I do at home are more effective than any facials I have done at the spa. Perhaps this is because I am not an advocate of extractions (they can harm your skin more than help). For me, I find it more effective to use a nice warm towel over my face to open my pores, and then to use a face mask.
Here are my top face masks depending on what you need. Remember, these are masks that worked for me. Always test a small patch of your skin before trying anything new in your skin regiment:
For Blemishes: I highly recommend Lumene’s Matt Touch Deep Cleansing Peat Mask. It literally pulls out the gunk from my pores for a nice blemish free face. Apply a thin layer and let it sit for 10 minutes. I prefer to towel off this mask with a warm wet washcloth to really feel the mask working.
For Radiance: I recommend Glam Glow Mask. While I am not too fond of the smell or large tea leaves in this mask, this mask will bring up your circulation to your face for an undeniable glow.
For Younger Looking Skin: You have to try Exfolikate. Not only does it smell like yummy cinnamon pumpkin, it literally buffs away dead skin cells better than any other mask to reveal fresher, younger looking skin.
For Dry Skin: This is my cheapest recommendation yet. Even as a college student, I used to use Vaseline for a variety of things. One of my favorite uses is to smear a thin layer all over my face and wipe it off with a hot wet washcloth. You are left with soft supple skin and a nice fresh glow that literally costs pennies!
Smokey eyes are a great way to dress up your look for evening.
The eyes have it! While some hijabis are all about the bright lippy, I am and always will be devoted to my eye makeup for a dramatic look. Beautiful eyes enhanced with kohl have been a quintessential part of Muslim women’s beauty routines for years. In fact, the Prophet (saws) used to use kohl himself. Aisha (ra), the Prophet’s wife once said: “I used to pack Allah’s Messenger’s things for him. I would pack some oil lotion, a mirror, a pair of scissors, a kohl jar and a tooth stick.” It was also said that the Prophet also took with him a kohl jar as part of his toiletry. Back then, kohl used to protect the eyes from sand and the sun’s glare as well as enhance the beauty of your eyes by emphasizing your eyes’ brightness.
While you have to be careful of kohl that may contain lead, you can always recreate the smokey eye look with a few products from your local drugstore. It is the perfect way to transform tired eyes from a hard day’s work into sparkling eyes! I recommend keeping the rest of your face clean and simple. I actually take off any makeup and just soften my skin using rose water. I then add a gray shadow all over the lid coupled with a darker black shadow to contour my crease. I finished with liquid gel eyeliner and mascara.
What is your go to look? Are you a lippy hijabi or a smokey eye hijabi?
Marwa Atik, the designer behind Vela Scarves is a mix of rock and roll chic with easy California style.
Salaams my lovelies and jumuah mubarak! As you know, Friday, I try to do a Follow Friday post on an Instagram account that I love to follow. Since I realized that it seems like I am obsessed with hijabis from the UK, I decided to feature an American hijabi this week! I want to introduce you readers to Marwa Atik. Marwa Atik is the designer behind the beautiful hijab line called Vela Scarves. Born to parents of Syrian and Turkish descent, Marwa realized that she wanted to design scarves when she would doodle scarf designs during her nursing classes. Luckily for all of us, she switched majors and is now taking classes in Fashion and Merchandising.
Marwa has two Instagram accounts. The first, @velascarves is her line’s official account and features not only her eclectic style, but also a variety of hijabis who wear her scarves that are affectionately called “Vela Girls”. One of my favorite Vela Girls is aspiring news anchor Noor Tagouri.
Marwa Atik’s personal Instagram account is @marwa_atik. This account is all Marwa and shows you a sneak peek into her life as a busy designer, diligent fashion student, and hijabi on the go. I love checking out her account for the latest on ways to mix edgier pieces. Plus, she has a professed love for old school rap. How can you not love her? As a non glamorous mom, it is always nice to see a hijabi who can always look amazing (even when sleep deprived) so that I can get some inspiration for myself to get out of my easy jeans and into something a little bit cooler. Check out Marwa Atik and her gorgeous hijab designs and let me know what you think.