The Nike Pro Hijab has officially entered the fashion world.
The Pro Hijab, which was first announced back in March, made its debut on the runway this week at Fashion Forward Dubai. Designed by Saudi-based Mashael Al Rajhi, the hijab is intended for female Muslim athletes who need a high-performance garment. It’s made from lightweight, breathable fabric with tiny holes throughout, formulated to be light enough for competition while remaining opaque. Prominent athletes like UAE-based weightlifter Amna Al Haddad and Emirati figure skater Zahra Lari reportedly assisted in testing the garment in its yearlong process from conception to runway.
The garment was designed after a number of prominent Muslim athletes went to Nike with the need for a competition-friendly garment. Nike took the opportunity to put some weight behind its reputation as an inclusive, boundary-breaking performance company. “By providing Muslim athletes with the most groundbreaking products, like the Nike Pro Hijab, Nike aims to serve today’s pioneers as well as inspire even more women and girls in the region who still face barriers and limited access to sport: Fewer than one in seven girls participate in locally recommended sport activities for 60 minutes or more,” the company said in a press release announcing the launch.
The hijab won’t be available in stores until spring 2018, but for now the brand and Al Rahji are building up the hype. For the Dubai runway, the designer mixed the athletic hijab with a streetwear vibe by pairing it with Nike Air Force 1 sneakers.
“The Nike Pro Hijab is the perfect extension for my collection, as it symbolizes femininity and independence — values that I believe are more essential than ever for women today,” Al Rajhi told Cosmopolitan ME. “You’ll see that I chose to style the collection with my personal favorite, the iconic streetwear classic, the Nike Air Force 1. It’s white, it’s bold and it’s timeless.”
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