Muslim Teen Joins Miss Maine Pageant in Hijab

A young Muslim Somali immigrant has become the first Miss Maine pageant contestant to wear a hijab, seeing Muslim representation in these events as important to break the ice in the community.

“I didn’t take the crown, but it was an amazing experience,” Hamida Ahmed told The Independent.

“I want to inspire other girls to feel beautiful, confident, and follow their dreams no matter where they’re from.”

Ahmed was born in Somalia and raised in a refugee camp in Kenya before immigrating to the US.

The young beauty took part in the annual competition wearing two outfits, both of which were paired with a hijab.

In the swimsuit portion of the contest, she donned a pink and black burkini.

Though she did not win the prize, Ahmed was proud to have simply taken part. Ahmed explained that she chose to compete “because representation is important.”

“I competed in Miss Maine as the first Muslim girl with a Hijab. I slayed my hijab,” she wrote on Twitter.

Ahmed is not the first Muslim woman to join beauty pageants in the US while donning a hijab.

American Muslim teen Halima Aden made history in 2016 by competing at the Miss Minnesota competition in her traditional dress and modest swimwear, reaching the semi-finals of the beauty pageant.

At 15, she was the first fully covered Muslim to compete in the state pageant.

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