Diversity: Brands Embrace Hijabs

Macy’s recently made history (or is it herstory?) as the first U.S. department store to sell hijabs for Muslim women. Fashion designer Lisa Vogl developed the modest active wear line for the store. The Verona Collection includes a selection of ready-to-wear items including tops, dresses, pants, cardigans, and hijabs in a variety of fabrics and colors. Items are priced between $12.95 and $84.95.

And, Macy’s is not the only company to carry modest clothing for Muslim women; designer Hana Tajima has several collections carried by international brand Uniqlo. Fashion brand Dolce & Gabbana has also debuted hijabs on the runway.

Nike has also gotten in the game. The company designed and sells a performance hijab for Muslim female athletes. American Olympian fencer Ibtihaj Muhammad made history by wearing a hijab at the 2016 Rio Olympics. The Nike Pro Hijab will be available soon and is priced at $35.00.

And, let’s not forget Mattel, a classic American brand that now has its first hijab-clad Barbie doll. It also honors Olympian Ibtihaj Muhammad. The doll is part of Barbie’s “Shero” line of toys that celebrate women breaking boundaries in sports and science. Also in the Shero line are athletes including Gabby Douglas and Chloe Kim, pioneers Amelia Earhart and Katherine Johnson, and artist Frida Kahlo.

It’s time for inclusivity.

Group Activities and Discussion Questions:

  1. Poll students: Are there market segments that are marginalized? How can these segments be included by brands to expand their reach and encourage diversity?
  2. Video of Macy’s: https://youtu.be/aWVB_bi8RQ0
  3. Video of Nike ad: https://youtu.be/T1Qyg8l-l8U
  4. Nike Pro Hijab Web site: https://www.nike.com/us/en_us/c/women/nike-pro-hijab
  5. Video Uniqlo: https://youtu.be/5xbLFJulZNo
  6. Mattel Sheroes Web site: https://barbie.mattel.com/en-us/about/role-models.html
  7. What other market segments could be represented with new lines of products?
  8. Divide students into teams and have each team develop a product for a different market segment.

Source:  Brandchannel.com. (7 February, 2018). Diversity watch: Brands making strides, slowly, on hijabs.

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