Somali-American Halima Aden claims another big first as the first Muslim model to wear a hijab and burkini in Sports Illustrated‘s famed swimsuit issue.
Commenting on Aden’s inclusion in the issue, SI Swimsuit editor MJ Day stated, “We believe beauty knows no boundaries. I admire Halima, and I consider her an inspirational human for what she has decided to use her platform for and her work with Unicef as an ambassador. She is, in my opinion, one of the great beauties of our time, not only outside but inside. When we met, I was instantaneously taken by her intelligence, enthusiasm and authenticity.”
The 21-year-old Aden was born in Kenya at the Kakuma Refugee Camp, where she lived until the age of seven before moving to the United States. For her Sports Illustrated rookie spread, she returned to Kenya where she was shot at Watamu Beach in Kenya with photographer Yu Tsai.