Mariah Idrissi

Mariah Idrissi (born 16 August 1992) is a British model, public speaker, and online personality. Idrissi initially gained recognition as the first Muslim hijab-wearing model when she appeared in multinational retailer, H&M's "Close the Loop" campaign in 2015; after which, Idrissi became a leading authority on "modest fashion" appearing on domestic and international news programmes on the subject.[1][2][3] In 2016, Idrissi signed to Select modelling agency in 2016 and signed with Insanity Group Management in 2017.[4][5]

Mariah Idrissi
Lalla Maria Derissy

(1992-08-16) 16 August 1992 (age 30)
London, United Kingdom, UK
  • Model
  • public speaker
  • online personality
Years active2015–present
Known forBeing the first Muslim hijab-wearing model
  • Moulay Ahmed Derissy
  • Sidi Yasin Derissy
Modeling information
AgencyInsanity Group Management

Early lifeEdit

Lalla Maria Derissy was born in London, England, on 16 August 1992, the daughter of Pakistani and Moroccan parents.[6][7] Idrissi has two brothers, Moulay Ahmed Derissy and Sidi Yasin Derissy.


Idrissi was first scouted by former actress turned casting director, Coralie Rose at the Westfield London shopping centre, Shepherd's Bush.[5] Rose's talent agency, 'Road Casting Kids' secured Idrissi's first casting, an appearance in H&M's 2015 sustainable fashion campaign, 'Close The Loop'. In the ad campaign, "Idrissi is pictured outside a fish and chip shop in East London wearing a pink coat, aviator sunglasses and a checked hijab" making her the first Muslim hijab-wearing model.[2][8]

Idrissi appears in both print and video ads for the Swedish fashion brand's campaign.[6] As a result, both Idrissi and H&M made headline news receiving domestic coverage across major British media outlets,[9][10] and in high fashion magazines Elle, Marie Claire and Teen Vogue.[11][12][13] International news broadcasters including CNN, ABC AU, Huffington Post, NBC and Al Jazeera covered the now viral campaign.[3][4][14][15] Katie Rogers of The New York Times wrote: "the story of Mariah Idrissi, a hijab-wearing model, has prompted a discussion about women who are reclaiming the head scarf as a form of stylish self-expression."[16] Aaron Morrison of The International Business Times reported, "There's a considerable amount of buzz in the fashion world about Mariah Idrissi".[6]

Publications began to refer to Idrissi as the face of modest fashion.[17] Entity Magazine titled its piece, "Mariah Idrissi: The New Face of Modest Fashion",[18] while journalist, Salem Ola of Abu Dhabi newspaper, The National said:

Her two-second cameo sent a wave of excitement and uncertainty through the fashion industry. Without even realising it, Idrissi had become the face of modest fashion, as the first hijab-wearing model for H&M, the second-largest global retailer, after Zara.[17]

Writing on Dolce & Gabbana's 'Abaya' collection designed specifically for Muslim women, The Daily Telegraph's, Fashion News & Features Editor, Bibby Sowray credits Idrissi as "one of the first to make waves in the industry",[1] while co-host of NPR's Morning Edition, Renee Montagne refers to the appearance of hijab-wearing model, Idrissi as "groundbreaking".[19]

In May 2016, Idrissi joined the first Istanbul Modest Fashion Week held in Turkey as a "modest influencer."[20][21] In November 2016, Idrissi featured in contemporary modest fashion retailer,[8] Aab's winter season collection.[22][23]

Idrissi has also appeared on a Fenty Beauty campaign, the cosmetics line by Rihanna.[24][25]

Charity and community serviceEdit

An active humanitarian, Idrissi advocates for Syrian Women, endorsing Human Care Syria's 'Women's Hygiene and Sanitation' project.[26] In 2016, Idrissi spoke at London's TEDxTeen conference held at the IndigoO2 at The O2 Arena.[27] Her talk, 'Changing the Face of Fashion' is available on TEDx's official 'Tedx Innovations' site.[28] As part of an NHS social action campaign to drive young donors to register and give blood, Idrissi joined other leading British black and Asian public figures including multiple gold-winning Olympian Nicola Adams MBE, Chuka Umunna MP, TV presenter and wheelchair basketball player Ade Adepitan MBE and MOBO's founder Kanya King MBE to launch 'Represent'.[29][30]

Described by The BEAM Awards as "an influential role model and voice for many fashion conscious modest women in the UK as well as internationally," the organisation nominated Idrissi for the 2016 'Cultural Icon of the Year' award and later appointed her an ambassador of the ceremony.[31][32] Idrissi uses her online social media accounts and speaking engagements communicating reactions to the H&M campaign, her work as an advocate, and how other brands are incorporating Muslim dress in mainstream fashion.


  1. ^ a b Sowray, Bibby (6 January 2016). "Muslim model Mariah Idrissi on Dolce & Gabbana's new hijab and abaya collection". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  2. ^ a b Mortimer, Caroline (30 October 2015). "Mariah Idrissi: H&M's first hijab-wearing model says her work 'isn't immodest'". Independent. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  3. ^ a b Sarkar, Monica (26 August 2016). "H&M's latest look: Hijab-wearing Muslim model stirs debate". CNN. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  4. ^ a b Millar, Lisa (24 October 2016). "Muslim model Mariah Idrissi breaking down barriers in fashion world". ABC. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  5. ^ a b Idrissi, Mariah (18 September 2016). "Changing The Face of Fashion". HuffPost. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  6. ^ a b c Morrisson, Aaron (28 September 2015). "Who Is Mariah Idrissi? First H&M Muslim Model Debuts in Ad Wearing Hijab". International Business Times. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  7. ^ Halime, Farah (25 September 2015). "Meet the first hijab-wearing model in an H&M ad". Fusion. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  8. ^ a b Khan, Aina (22 February 2017). "Generation M: how young Muslim women are driving a modest fashion revolution". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  9. ^ "H&M has hired its first ever hijab-wearing model". ITV. 29 September 2015. Retrieved 7 March 2017.
  10. ^ Coleman, Jasmine (29 September 2015). "H&M's hijab-wearing model: Fashion industry is changing". BBC. Retrieved 7 March 2017.
  11. ^ Elturk, Melanie (29 October 2015). "What H&M's Hijab-Wearing Model Means for Muslim Women". Elle. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  12. ^ "H&M Releases Ad With First Hijab-Wearing Muslim Model And She Looks Beautiful". Marie Claire. 28 September 2015. Retrieved 7 March 2017.
  13. ^ Thurmond, Alexandra (28 September 2015). "This 23-Year-Old Model is the First to Wear a Hijab in an H&M Campaign". Teen Vogue. Retrieved 4 March 2017.
  14. ^ Rosy, Cherrington (30 September 2015). "H&M Hijab-Wearing Model Mariah Idrissi on Muslims, Modesty And Fashion". HuffPost. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  15. ^ Stewart, Phillippa H (3 November 2015). "UK: Bake-offs, hijabs, and attacks against Muslim women". Al Jazeera. Retrieved 3 March 2017.
  16. ^ Rogers, Katie (29 November 2015). "H&M Features Hijab-Wearing Model in New Campaign". The New York Times. Retrieved 7 March 2017.
  17. ^ a b Salem, Ola (28 November 2016). "Cover girls: the hijab's fashion breakthrough". The National. Retrieved 4 March 2017.
  18. ^ Birch, Harmony (20 February 2016). "Mariah Idrissi: The New Face of Modest Fashion". Entity Magazine. Retrieved 4 March 2017.
  19. ^ "A Model in a Hijab Talks About Her Faith And Fashion". NPR. 1 October 2015. Retrieved 4 March 2017.
  20. ^ Al Shatti, Nouriah (18 May 2016). "A Front Row Look at the First Istanbul Modest Fashion Week". En Vogue. Retrieved 10 March 2017.
  21. ^ Li Min, Lim (10 May 2016). "Istanbul Modest Fashion Week wants to bring together an industry that doesn't 'speak same fashion language'". Retrieved 10 March 2017.
  22. ^ "Aab Presents AW16 Campaign featuring international hijabi model Mariah Idrissi". 24 November 2016. Retrieved 10 March 2017.
  23. ^ "Aab Presents AW16 Campaign featuring international hijabi model Mariah Idrissi". 30 November 2016. Retrieved 10 March 2017.
  24. ^ "Mariah Idrissi talks modest fashion and modelling for Rihanna". Evening Standard. 18 January 2019. Retrieved 12 February 2019.
  25. ^ "How Rihanna picked me to be the face of Fenty Beauty". Grazia Middle East. Retrieved 12 February 2019.
  26. ^ "Mariah Idrissi Advocate For Syrian Women's Struggle!". Human Care Syria. 2016. Retrieved 7 March 2017.
  27. ^ Dwyer, Kate (17 October 2016). "Everything You Missed From Yesterday's TEDxTeen Conference". Teen Vogue. Retrieved 7 March 2017.
  28. ^ Reissman, Hailey (26 August 2016). "Eight TEDx talks that are always in fashion". Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  29. ^ "Star line up call on the black and Asian community to #Represent". NHS. 27 October 2016. Retrieved 11 March 2017.
  30. ^ Motune, Vic (3 November 2016). "Grime Star Lady Leshurr Heads Blood Donation Campaign". Retrieved 11 March 2017.
  31. ^ "The BEAM Awards Ambassadors". 22 December 2016. Retrieved 6 March 2017.
  32. ^ "Jourdan Dunn Joins the Beam Judging panel". 22 December 2016. Retrieved 6 March 2017.

External linksEdit