My heritage is Iranian, my creed is Muslim, and my customs have been watered down by the culture of the beautiful place I grew up in, Switzerland. Where fair skin, blonde hair and colored eyes are common and where I stood out like a coffee stain on white linen.
It wasn’t easy growing up as the only Persian girl in the neighborhood – it really took a toll on my self-esteem – the repercussions followed me into adulthood, and at times I still struggle with them.
I recall noticing that the people gracing the covers of magazines, billboards and television, looked nothing like me – were we not beautiful?
“ …I ended up putting myself ‘in the closet’, a Muslim closet.”
I started to change everything about me, the lack of representation gave me more insecurities than I could count. As a teenager, I tried everything to become more conventionally beautiful. In the process, I stripped my hair to resemble that of my friends. I used colored contacts and foundation two shades lighter than my face. I had also distanced myself so far from my beautiful Muslim culture that I essentially put myself “in the closet,” a Muslim closet.
Craving to experience some normalcy in my own skin, at twenty-one I moved to Los Angeles – a more culturally assorted city – and began my search for the little Persian-Muslim girl I had shun so long ago. I decided I would become the representation my culture needed.
The launch of the Cleopatra Cat Eye Stamp was a good start, but as a visionary I wanted something bigger! I took a leap of faith and decided to become Halal Certified, this would be my vehicle for Muslim representation.
“ …being Halal Certified is equally important, and few are talking about it. ”
These days being vegan, gluten-free, cruelty-free and organic are important, but common. Being Halal Certified is equally important and few are talking about it. Why?
Abiding by Halal standards means that there are less toxins, no pork or animal derived ingredients, no GMOs or insects used. The word itself means permissible (according to Islamic law) and provides healthier products in general, that far outreach the Muslim community.
The Muslim female population around the world is growing and they are looking to be recognized and honored for all they are. Being Halal Certified is a step in the right direction. Lyda Beauty is proud to announce that we have partnered with Halal World Watch, LLC, and as a Halal-certified beauty brand, we can now cater to the Muslim community, and simultaneously share our rich culture with you.
My experience growing up Muslim in a primarily white culture is not unique. It is affecting a whole people, people like me. With 900+ million Muslim women around the world, this small step towards a Halal certification for Lyda Beauty is just the beginning in how we, as a company, hope to better serve Muslim women in the beauty industry and media.
As a leader in beauty media, I think stories like these would be valuable to your audience, to inform and educate and provide a wider representation in the beauty community.