Halima Aden has made history once again as the first black woman to grace the cover of Essence magazine in a hijab just months after her historical appearance in a burkini for Sports Illustrated’s Swimsuit Issue.
The Somali-American model celebrated the news in a tweet on Monday.
‘Ahhh!! My first cover of 2020 and it’s for @essence!! A huge thank you to everyone who worked tirelessly on this historic 50th anniversary cover, I’m so thankful to be the first black hijab wearing woman to be featured on Essence!’ she tweeted.
The tweet included Aden looking flawless in a pink hijab on the magazine’s cover.
There have been several moments in model Halima Aden’s life when she’s broken a barrier by simply being who she is,’ Essence shared in a news release on its website.
‘The model and activist was the first Muslim homecoming queen at her high school; the first Somali student senator at her college; and the first hijab-wearing woman to be the face of numerous fashion magazine covers, including Allure and British Vogue.
‘In celebration of stepping into a new decade, Aden’s gracing the cover of ESSENCE’s January/February 2020 issue as the first Black female cover star wearing a hijab,’ the statement reads.
Aden told the magazine that ‘it’s important for me to be visible and to do whatever I can to let girls know that they don’t have to change who they are’.
‘I want them to know the world will meet them exactly where they stand,’ she added.
Though the model shared her good news on Monday, it came just days after she was slammed for attending the MDL Beast music festival in Saudi Arabia.
She was among several celebrities to be criticized for going to the festival in Riyadh without mentioning the country’s controversial human rights record.
The likes of Sofia Richie, Winnie Harlow, Alessandra Ambrosio, Joan Smalls, Irina Shayk, Stella Maxwell, Luka Sabbat, Armie Hammer, Scott Disick and Phillippe all shared multiple photos in recent days that were tagged in Riyadh.
The 22-year-old model appeared in the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue wearing a hijab and a burkini earlier this year.
Aden, who was born in a refugee camp in Kenya, returned to her birth country for her first shoot with the magazine, which was photographed by Yu Tsai at Watamu Beach.