Photography courtesy of Jasmine Fares
“I wanted to create a brand that solved the problem I faced for so long.”
Date March 9, 2022
Influencers are arguably some of the most compelling (and perhaps polarizing) public figures of the digital age. They review the trendiest products, share endless outfit inspo, and above all, deliver enough cross-platform content to keep us glued to our screens. Canadian-Muslim influencer Jasmine Fares has this recipe down to a science.
From managing a shared TikTok account with her husband — which boasts a whopping 778,400 followers — to running her own modest fashion brand, FARES, the 26-year-old content creator is one to watch. Fares got her start on social media at a time when few Muslim influencers were represented in the sea of style and beauty of gurus attracting audiences online. She began on Instagram but quickly made her way across multiple platforms, posting regular content on YouTube and, now, TikTok.
As an entrepreneur, Fares saw a void in the market for casual, everyday modest clothing — not unlike the basics you might find at H&M and Zara — and decided to bridge that gap. Today, her store is home to unique pieces like gym waist wraps and half tees.
FASHION caught up with Jasmine Fares to get an inside look into her daily life as an influencer and entrepreneur.
Who is Jasmine Fares? And where did your journey with content creation begin?
I’ve always been into drawing and that creative space. When I got to university, the pressure from the parents kicked in, so I had to put it on pause and [went] into something more “realistic.” Once I did all the boring stuff, I [needed] a creative outlet. That’s when social media blossomed, and everyone was getting Instagram and YouTube accounts. So I jumped on the wagon and posted a photo in a modest dress. That photo blew up…and by the time I graduated, I was working full-time on Instagram and YouTube.
That was also around when I met my husband, and we started doing the whole couple’s content…My brand was launched in 2021 and I had started the whole concept of it in 2020 during the pandemic. It was definitely a long time coming.
How has the influencer industry changed since you first started, especially when it comes to Muslim representation?
I’ve been doing this for about six years, and when I started, there were only a few names in the game, and they were the bigger ones like Dina Tokio, With Love Leena, Yaz the Spaz — they were just the OG girls on social media.
I feel it’s more common to see girls that dress modestly on social media, even if they don’t wear their hijab. To see someone that looks like you on social media [who] is successful, travelling, featured in magazines, I think that’s encouraging for younger girls.
In the best way possible, it’s become a saturated market when it comes to modest fashion, and I love that because now anyone can make it, per se. There’s such a lovely bubble of modest dressers and hijabi influencers.
Did you struggle in any way as a content creator? Be it mentally or spiritually?
I think a lot of people underestimate what it’s really like to be in the public eye on social media. There are obviously a lot of celebrities and actors and socialites, but those people don’t get to hear what other people have to say about them because they’re just so much higher up, and no one is interacting with them. But when you’re a creator on these platforms that everyone is on, you definitely see what people have to think about you and what people say about you. People can be very ruthless, very cutthroat and very rude. But you have to accept the fact that everyone’s going to have an opinion. You just have to filter it out for your own mental health.
In terms of my hijab, I feel, if anything, it’s actually empowered me over the years.
Why did you decide to start FARES, and what sets it apart from other modest fashion brands?
A lot of modest fashion brands have very high-end-looking pieces. They have beautiful evening gowns, they have lovely dresses that you can wear for Eid, but I think what we lack in the modest fashion industry is the typical H&M and Zara type of designs but catered to a Muslim dresser, a modest dresser.
I struggled to find pieces that were just casual wear that also fit my modest needs. I wanted to create a brand that solved the problem I faced for so long. I wanted to create a brand that was your go-to brand for your essential basics, for your minimal design clothing, things that are timeless in your wardrobe.
What is your own personal favourite item from your store?
The most special item to me would probably be the asymmetric blazer that I actually designed in high school. I knew that one day if I ever had a brand, that would be a piece that I wanted to release. When I was able to bring that original design to life, it was one of the coolest things ever because it’s something that I’ve always imagined in my head. It was a really full-circle moment.
Do you have any exciting launches or plans coming up that you can share a little about?
We have a Ramadan collection, a summer collection, and with long Canadian winters, we always have multiple drops then too. We have a lot planned for FARES! Within the first year of growing this business, it’s a lot of trial and error. You see live feedback from people who purchase your pieces, and I really appreciate that part of being a content creator.
I’m very in tune with my customers. That’s the number one thing we’re taking into account this year, to really connect with our customers and see what they want; not just what we love designing but what they are looking for.
Could you describe yourself in three words?
Collected. Fun. Growth-oriented.
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