Miss Muslimah 2018 takes place June 30. Sponsored by the World Islamic Fund (WMF), proceeds from the event will go towards relief funds for Muslim women living in either war-torn countries, or nations going through natural disasters where access to food and clean water is an issue.
Unlike other pageants, this international beauty contest celebrates more than a pretty face. Contestants are required to embody the essence of a Muslim woman dedicated to the practice of her religion. They must demonstrate religious piety and a dedication to Islamic values, as well as be a positive role model in their community. Judges will evaluate their devotion to Islam by testing their knowledge of religious texts and their understanding of the teachings in the Holy Koran.
All the contestants must be between the age of 17-30 and will be required to answer one specific question: "If you are crowned Miss Muslimah USA how would you use your title to change the stereotype views Muslim women face in America every day?"
The contestants that make it to the fifth round will also have to prepare a 5-minute speech that we hope will be more inspiring than the standard "world peace" answer we're used to hearing from contestants in other pageants.
Previously (2017 was its inaugural year) contestants have walked down the runway in loose fitting robes covering their bodies, and a headdress (which is different from a veil as it covers their necks as well as their hair). This year, Dubai-born modest fashion brand, Desert Cove, is the official fashion sponsor of the event, and the contestants will be dressed in their latest collection. Could this mean that we can expect a Miss Muslimah pageant in our hood soon? We hope so and the brand does too.
This is the first official platform to give Muslim women the chance to change people's perception about them. It's a golden opportunity to show that while fashion and religion don't usually go together, there's a lot more to being beautiful than what's on the outside.