Malala Yousafzai makes powerful statement on cover of British Vogue

·1-min read

Malala Yousafzai is British Vogue's latest cover star.

The U.K. publication's editor-in-chief, Edward Enninful, has selected the Pakistani education activist and Nobel Prize laureate to feature on the July 2021 edition, titled "The extraordinary life of Malala, survivor, activist, legend".

Photographed by Nick Knight, the cover image depicts Malala wearing a bright red shirt and matching headscarf by Stella McCartney, as well as jewellery from Alice Cicolini.

Regarding her wardrobe for the photoshoot, the Oxford graduate explained she wanted to emphasise that wearing modest clothing doesn't mean she is "voiceless or oppressed".

"It's a cultural symbol for us Pashtuns, so it represents where I come from. And Muslim girls or Pashtun girls or Pakistani girls, when we follow our traditional dress, we're considered to be oppressed, or voiceless, or living under patriarchy," she shared. "I want to tell everyone that you can have your own voice within your culture, and you can have equality in your culture."

Sam McKnight was tasked with styling Malala's hair, while make-up artist Val Garland created her beauty look. And the team insisted the 23-year-old have input in every element of the photoshoot.

"Malala and I collaborated to achieve a look that did this. Dewy, gorgeous skin was a must, and we worked together to bring out her incredible eyes - it was really important to retain her essence," Val added. "She has a really strong look and I worked with her skin and that was that. Halfway through the shoot, I just asked if we should give her a red lip - and she was like, 'Yeah! Let's do it!'"

The new issue of British Vogue will be available to buy from 4 June.

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