PULLOVER, RM3,445, TROUSERS, RM1,995, COAT, AND SNEAKERS, ALL LONGCHAMP. ‘MILDA’ SHAWL IN LIGHT GREY-BLUE, RM59, NAELOFAR. RING, AMEERA’S OWN

“Just because it’s not on social media doesn’t mean that it’s not happening.” – Unknown

To what extent are you willing to go in order to be true to yourself? While this question might have never run through our minds, Ameera Khan (or more commonly known as @littlemisskhan to her 1.4 million Instagram followers) has pondered on this line time and again. The 20-year-old Kelantan-born model and social media influencer believes in keeping her personal life completely private as she strongly believes that strength comes to a person when he/she is silent. Compared to a few years ago, Ameera shares that she’s a changed person today because of the ups and downs that she has gone through. “Back then, I used to post everything on social media – from what I was currently doing to what I was working on and everything in between – but now I only post about work and maybe a bit about my family,” she opens up. “Sometime in mid-2019 to February 2020, I deactivated my Instagram for eight months as I needed a break.”

‘CECILE’ KEBAYA-INSPIRED BATWING CUT TOP AND INSTANT WRAP SARONG SKIRT, RM409, ALIA B. X NAELOFAR. PYTHON PRINT SANDAL, GUCCI. ‘MILDA’ SHAWL IN LIGHT PINK-PURPLE, RM59, NAELOFAR. ‘ANGELIC’ ROUND BRACELET, RM399, AND ‘ATTRACT’ PEAR RING SET, RM599, BOTH SWAROVSKI

“Friendship is built on respect and trust.” – Stieg Larsson, Swedish writer

“Social media is one of the reasons why I find it hard to trust people. Even if the person’s intention is pure and genuine, I don’t see things from that perspective. Nowadays, I look at people and assume that they want something from me. Like, they just want to be my friend because of my name or because of who I’m connected to,” says Ameera. “In reality, that might not be the case all the time but trust is a big issue in my life. I know that it’s important but I just don’t have that in me anymore to feel safe and at peace.”

As a result, Ameera now only trusts her family members and has been spending less time on social media. “The only thing I do now is work and spend quality time with my family. I’m grateful to my have my best friend, Sara, in my life and she’s always with me, so I consider her as part of my fam. I’m also extremely grateful to have a huge and close-knit family who means everything to me. Many people including my sister’s in-laws have asked me how I can spend day and night with my family, and my response is simple: they are my world,” she shares. “It may not be obvious on social media but all of it comes from what I’ve been through on that platform. Even when I meet new people, I’m not going to be extra friendly to them. It’s different if I know you or if I’m meeting a new person with someone I’m already familiar with. Otherwise, it’ll take me a long time to warm up to you and I’m not the kind of person who’s going to pretend that I’m comfortable with you when I’m not.”

KEN SCOTT PRINT PLEATED DRESS, GUCCI. ‘MILDA’ SHAWL IN BLACK, RM59, NAELOFAR. ‘THE ELEMENTS’ RING, RM599, AND ‘TWIST WRAP’ RING, RM999, BOTH SWAROVSKI

“What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.” – Kelly Clarkson

On the bright side, Ameera’s view turned out to be an added advantage for her during this pandemic and extended MCOs, as it meant that she could spend more time with everyone at home. “Throughout the quarantine period, I kept myself busy. I had to work and when things subsided [during the RMCO], I even scheduled photoshoots to be done at home,” says Ameera. “It was also during this time when I realised that spending time with myself and my loved ones is something that I really treasure. I got a lot of things done from home and I enjoyed this precious bonding time. It was fun for me to cook with my sisters and catch up on reading and watching series after series. It’s been a few months since I got into the habit of watching a series with my sisters before falling asleep every night.”

‘SAMARA’ ASYMMETRICAL KURUNG IN TURQUOISE, RM529, MIMPIKITA. ‘AISA’ SHAWL IN POWDER BLUE, RM85, NAELOFAR. ‘ANGELIC’ ROUND BRACELET, RM399, ‘MAGIC’ BRACELET, RM549, ‘ATTRACT’ PEAR RING SET, RM599, AND ‘VITTORE’ V RING, RM499, ALL SWAROVSKI

“The best is yet to come.” – Frank Sinatra

Looking back at her journey so far, Ameera shares that being a model wasn’t her first career choice but she’s extremely happy of how things have fallen in place. “My mum and sisters have always been a huge inspiration to me. They’re the ones who showed me the way without actually showing me the way. Just hearing my mum’s stories about herself and her life before meeting my dad inspires me. And I’ve seen how my sister, Kak Neelofa struggled from the start to be where she is today. She’s always looking for ways to make herself better and that really inspires me,” says Ameera.

“After finishing my year 12 [education] in 2016, I was scheduled to further my studies in Business Marketing in London last March. But alas, the whole Covid-19 pandemic took place and my sister returned from London at the same time, so that plan is now shelved. Surprisingly, though, when I reactivated my Instagram account, things started to pick up and modelling gigs landed on my lap, so that’s how it all began. The good thing about it all is that I get to learn while working in my current situation. As the saying goes, there’s no better experience than a hands-on experience, and besides modelling, I’m also working with various brands and getting the momentum going.”

SILK CRÊPE DE CHINE SHIRT, ARGYLE WOOL JACKET WITH HORSEBITS, KEN SCOTT PRINT LINEN SKIRT, AND CHAIN BELT WITH INTERLOCKING ‘G’ CHARM, ALL GUCCI. ‘MILDA’ SHAWL IN DUSTY WARM PEACH, RM59, NAELOFAR

On her upcoming plans, Ameera says, “Moving forward, I want to work towards making a name for myself like what my sisters and mum have taught me to do. I want to have something that I can hold onto in the future. Having said that, I also want to make my parents proud of me. I carry my dad’s name, and one of the reasons why I’ve decided to start wearing the hijab is to honour his name, besides having received a calling. To me, religion is a very personal thing and it differs from one individual to another. I’m happy that it came earlier for me and from here on, I only want to be a better person.”

‘MADELINE’ KURUNG MODERN TOP WITH PUSSYBOW DETAIL AND SKIRT, RM549, ALIA B. X NAELOFAR. MONO PRINTED SHAWL IN SMOKEY-SKY BLUE, RM99, NAELOFAR. ‘ANGELIC’ ROUND BRACELET, RM399, ‘MAGIC’ BRACELET,RM549, ‘VITTORE’ PEAR RING, RM749, AND ‘VITTORE’ WIDE RING, RM749, ALL SWAROVSKI

Photography & videography: Tan Guo Xiang
Assisted by: Saifuddin Akmal
Art direction & illustration: Zariel Zahann
Styling & hijab styling: Alixa Ahmad
Coordination: Vasenta Selvanayagam
Makeup: Shiyo Joo using Armani Beauty, Chanel Makeup, Dior, Marc Jacobs, Tarte & Young & Glow 'The Darling Palette'

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