When she was 17, Maha Malik decided to start wearing a hijab. It was a statement of faith that was intrinsically linked to the evolution of her personal style. “I realized, to an extent, I now don’t just represent myself, I’m representing the Muslim world because I’m a noticeably Muslim person by wearing the hijab,” Malik says. “I wanted to portray myself in a more sophisticated way.”
For Malik (who chronicles her style journey on Instagram under the handle @malikawears), the height of that elegant sophistication is embodied by two royals: Queen Rania Al-Abdullah of Jordan and Sheikha Moza bint Nasser of Qatar. The University of Calgary grad interprets her own look by keeping modesty front of mind, balancing more form-fitting items such as tailored pants with looser tops, and keeping her sleeves long and her necklines high. “I really think that once I started wearing the head scarf I came into my style,” Malik says.