Ad Critique

Fitness and faith: Muslim women will accept no compromises

14, September, 2012


The context: Many Muslim women want to combine their aspiration to uphold their religious beliefs in wearing modest clothing with their desire for sports activities. Typical headscarves are not well suited for physical activity as they fall off, move around, the excess material can get caught, and the fabric is not comfortable for getting hot. Clothing too is a mismatch of non-sporting items which meet the modesty requirement but are not suited to sports. As a result, Muslim women who want modest clothing either find themselves exercising in inappropriate clothing, which makes sports a less enjoyable activity, or refraining from exercise totally, which leads to frustration.

The concept: A range of specially designed sportswear that understands and reflects Muslim women’s aspirations to participate and excel in sports. It knows that for these women their faith and the sports are integral to who they are. “Performance sportswear that covers your body and gives you the freedom to reach your fitness goals. Find your potential as an athlete or simply improve your physical health with friniggi sportswear.”

What we liked: The imagery is clear and bold, hinting at the comfort, confidence and pride of the target audience in upholding their Islamic values and engaging in sports. But more than that, whilst the models are dressed modestly, the focus is on the sports, showing clearly that the target audience takes it for granted that their clothing should be the backdrop to their sporting activities. It is the sports that they focus on. The clothing is the conduit to their aspirations.  Their website uses storytelling to show that they understand the mindset and lifestyle of their target audience, describing fictional characters who live out their active Muslim lifestyles. “She knows what’s important to her and that’s all that matters,” they explain. “We’re also not just about covering your body. We are well past that. Just like you are. We are about sports and your athletic experience. Just like you.” They also highlight a key fact about the Muslim Futurists – that their faith is not something that they see should be holding them back, and they highlight this in their strapline: “Compromising is a thing of the past.” They even spell out the two parts of their target audience’s identity Muslim and modernity by explaining how they designed their logo (see below). Finally, the design look and feel – while drawing on the traditional Islamic colour palette of green, and an updated modern orange variant of the sand colour often used, as well as referencing nature and the globe –  moves clearly away from traditionalist imagery to a clean modern look.