What’s your favorite cosmetic’s brand that I should try out next?
Plus Size Hijabi Model
What’s your favorite cosmetic’s brand that I should try out next?
Because I’ll be traveling all week, I just wanted to drop in and show you my latest work from the summer. I was flown to the UK, not once but twice, to shoot commercials for Simply Be UK.
Ya’ll know that I started my blog back in 2013 because I wanted to fill a gap. I wanted to show the world that beauty didn’t have a standard. It had no age, color, or religion.
I’ve always expressed my identity through fashion.
I was the Muslim girl who would wear black nail polish and black lipstick to prayer on Fridays and get shocked and disapproving looks from other Muslims. I was the girl who would cover her eye lids with glitter and stick flowers in her hijab while friends either made fun of me or told me that “big girls were always looking for attention”. I was the girl who always wore what she wanted on her face and body despite what people said.
I look back at all the people that talked shit about my makeup and clothing. Called me a clown and other discouraging names. They are either in my inbox asking for styling advice or now watching from the sidelines as I rise *sips tea*
Had I listened to their ridicule, had I wavered and changed who I truly was to please them, I surely wouldn’t be standing here shooting whole ass commercials 😂. I want to let you know that you don’t have to be an Instagram model to feel confident with your body. You don’t need a small waist, long weave with baby hairs laid, pale skin, clear skin, narrow nose, big booty, or long legs to feel beautiful.
You can start right now.
What makes your feel beautiful?
When I was a little girl, I used to hate change. Mom would always tease me. “Amerra, likes for everything to remain the same.
Amerra, which means “princess” in Arabic, and the Islamic name I was given as a child.
I think I’m still that person. Inside anyway. Little Amerra is still in there trying to halt movements that are too fast, too uncomfortable. It’s so safe right where we are. To move in an unknown direction, to make a leap of faith is just too much for her to carry, too much for many of us to carry.
So, we remain stagnant. And comfortable. Never venturing out into the wild that is life.
It is both sad yet understandable.
For me, I was forced to accept change. Does that mean I’m in love with it? Hell nah! But I get it. I understand—for the most part—that if I don’t move, the world will continue to move with or without me present.
When I say that I was forced to accept change, I mean that a series of shit occurred. Shit that stunned me. Shit that rendered me helpless, confused. Everything stopped. I was at the crossroads of going left or right. On the left was pain and misery on the right was also pain and misery. But, the right had some added benefits. With that pain and misery was acceptance. It was a route that I would be able to become my own narrator. Instead of allowing the world to narrate for me.
I think that too many people are afraid to take the wheel and become their own narrator because for one it’s scary as shit and secondly, it makes them accountable.
Change to me was being accountable. Holding others accountable.
Trust me when I tell you that this role isn’t easy to slide into. You come up against a lot of foolishness once you take on the challenge. I’ve noticed that people want to do what they want without consequences. Everyone just wants to be accepted as they are. But, that’s not really fair. Maybe your ‘as is’ ain’t good. Not good for you and not good for others. I know for a fact that mine wasn’t. Like at all. The person I was five years ago wasn’t good. It was doable. But not great.
Everything is going to change, I told myself two years ago.
And, would you look at that. Everything has changed.
I’ve changed. Situations have changed. Some slow and some fast. I’ve found myself being able to cope with change much quicker and more openly than before. I’ve moved less away from the rigidity of childhood and become a tad more fluid.
Yet there are still moments of complete rigidness, where I won’t bend for shit. Some work out and others, I am again forced to accept.
I’m still learning when to hold on and when to let go.
Last year, for me, was a year of hardship and discovery. I discovered that I had writing talent that I always knew I had but others wouldn’t give me the time of day to figure out. I always wondered how I was going to get my work seen. Heard. Nobody was checking for me. My little artsy feelings were hurt. But, I had talent, I screamed from the tops of mountains. Still no one cared.
When I tell you that I quit or almost quit multiple times is an understatement. It is HARD to do what I do. You, the spectator, get to look at the pretty photos and read the well-crafted sentences for free. Not seeing all the behind the scenes work that’s put into it. Not seeing me trying to drag myself out of bed every morning. Battling depression and anxiety. Wondering if anyone is reading this shit or am I just talking to my damn self.
I made a promise though. That no matter what, I’d always write. Every day. For free, if I had to. Because I am words and words are me. Simply.
This year. Man, this year, my endurance was put to the test. There wasn’t a chance to quit or tussle with change because I had gotten all the opportunities right in my lap. They piled on top of each other. After starting my blogging career in 2013, things were starting to change. For the good and bad. Friends started to drop off like flies, their true intentions revealed. I landed my very first commercial in the UK. I went to Barcelona on a random solo trip. I still don’t have a man on the account of me being too “intimating”. I’ve cultivated so many relationships with so many lady friends and have built a tribe all over the world.
“Everything is going to change,” I said to myself right before I knew I was getting divorced. Right before I knew all the foolery that he was a willing participant in.
I felt it in my bones. In my aura. I knew it was coming whether I wanted it to or not.
And, it did come. Sooner than I wanted but that’s not for me to control. I can only control how ready I am for it when it comes.
What has changed in your life? Were you ready for it? What kind of change would you like to see in the near future?
Heeeeeeeey! I definitely feel like one of those fuck bois who texts you regularly then all of a sudden stops then resumes texting you out of the blue. I haven't shared anything on my blog for a whole entire month. *Gasps* That's when you unequivocally know that I've been super de duper busy.
A few days ago, I landed back in the states, Detroit to be exact, after two hard weeks in Europe. On top of that, I have been readjusting to normal everyday life. When I tell you sis has been grinding hard for the last month or so, I have not been playing.
I've been making connections, meeting influencers, landing huge campaigns *flips hijab* as well as gaining another year. Hey, I'm 31 now. On the flip side, I haven't been able to truly take in some of my recent accomplishments and being overwhelmed by the recent influx of my so-called popularity.
It's a lot to handle folks, but I am so grateful to get the chance to make a change, make a difference, and do the damn thang!
I have so much more to share about life moments that unfolded during my month long absence. But, I'll leave that for a future blog post.
For now, I'd like to show you this video I worked on while in the UK.
I reached out to @lovedrobe @topsycurvyand asked if they would have my fat, Black, and very Muslim self as a model for their brand. After months of deliberation and to my surprise, they said yes. On a few hours of sleep and a full three hours of travel, I became their first Black Hijabi model. *Tongue pop*
This video was the last to be shot. I'm really proud of this and I hope you enjoy it as much as I do.
What's your favorite part of this video? Let's chat.
Creative Director: @kokocurve