If there is one celebrity in Malaysia who has proven to be an enduring fashion icon, it is Yunalis Mat Zara’ai.
The singer-songwriter, known simply as Yuna, went on a kind of style journey. Her sense of clothing has evolved since she appeared on the scene in the 2000s.
While Yuna’s dresses have matured over the years, going from bright and pretty to timeless chic, she still remains resolutely “she”.
Obviously the hijab turban she wears will always be an integral part of her look. The 35-year-old popularized the style to an international audience.
“Muslim girls, we love fashion! Regardless of whether we wear hijab or not, it’s our choice and it’s time for the industry to take notice, “said Yuna. The Guardian in 2017, for becoming the face of Uniqlo’s first hijab line in the UK.
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“I honestly don’t know how this hijabi fashion thing started, but I’m glad it did. I like the style I have, it’s my identity “.
In March of last year, Yuna landed on the cover of Vogue Singapore. In the interview, she recounted how a record label executive once told her she had to take off her veil and make a sexy image to the world. She refused.
True to form, she managed to own her looks and made whatever she wore beautiful.
Yuna sees herself in everything from trendy jeans to flowing dresses, and she doesn’t limit the way she dresses. For her, experimenting is fine as long as it fits her modest style.
A global reach
Yuna caused a sensation all over the world. His discography includes collaborations with Usher and Pharrell Williams. She performed as a special guest at the 2016 Soul Train Music Awards. She was even nominated for a BET Award in 2017.
And to think, it all started with the viral success of his music uploaded to the social networking platform Myspace.
She was recognized by Malaysia Book Of Records for being the first Malaysian artist to have an album in the Billboard Top 10. The awards he has received are simply too numerous to list.
Yuna is also a law graduate. Born in Kedah, she grew up in Subang Jaya, Selangor, before moving to the United States for a short time as her entertainment career took off.
In 2016, Rolling Stone named her album as one of the best R&B albums of 2016, along with other great artists such as Beyonce.
“By Yuna Chapters, which boasts cameos from Usher and Jhene Aiko, proves the Malaysian pop star is an insightful lyricist who only needs one or two stellar singles to grab mainstream attention, ”the magazine wrote.
Fast forward to 2022, Yuna’s fame and influence shines more than ever.
Spotify currently shows 1.4 million listeners. Her Instagram account, where she regularly shares her life and fashion sense, boasts over 900,000 followers.
Conquer the world of fashion
Not only satisfied with setting fashion trends, Yuna is also making her mark in the style industry with various collaborations.
In the past he has collaborated with Malaysian designer Hatta Dolmat for a collection that includes beautiful pieces such as kimono cardigans, baggy tops and palazzo pants.
His friendship with Hatta is decidedly intimate. When she got married in 2018, she wore her designs.
When Hatta released a sustainable fashion collection, Yuna starred in the campaign and web series leading up to Kuala Lumpur Fashion Week 2020.
He described his models made from recycled plastic bottles as “surprising”.
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Yuna also partnered with Malaysian Kin jewelry last year to create limited edition hoop earrings. Like her hijab turbans, these are seen as the quintessential Yuna and are part of her iconic look.
In 2019, he teamed up with shoe designer Christy Ng to launch a collection of shoes and bags.
She has also made appearances at international fashion weeks at the invitation of global fashion houses.
Such collaborations and visibility underline her love for fashion. It shows that she sees dressing up not just as part of her entertainment career, but as an important and very personal passion.