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Celebrating Muslim Beauty! Meet Ginella Massa, Canada’s First Hijab-Wearing News Anchor

Eki Ogunbor




Just after news that CoverGirl signed Muslim Beauty Blogger Nura Afia as part of their brand ambassadors earlier this month (see it here), showing that Muslim beauty is about a whole lot more than just looks. Toronto’s Ginella Massa made headlines this weekend after becoming the first hijab-wearing Muslim to anchor a major television newscast in Canada.

Although Ginella Massa has been an on-air reporter since 2015, this week marked a significant step forward for her and for women of the Muslim faith everywhere, when she sat in as news anchor for the first time. The stint at the news desk with Toronto’s CityNews station marks a first for her — and for Canada.

Massa hails from Panama and grew up in Toronto. She has been pursuing her career in news as a journalist and producer since 2010.

“It’s pretty exciting to be recognized as the first,”Massa told Yahoo Style. “But it’s also unfortunate that it has taken this long in a country as diverse as Canada.”

“I’m really grateful to work for a station that sees the value in having employees from all walks of life, who actually reflect the diversity of the community we are reporting in,” she continued.

Ginella Massa Reporting for CityNews

Massa recently wrote about her long-standing dream of becoming an on-air journalist on her blog in an article titled “Don’t let them tell you it can’t be done”:

“From a very young age I had dreamt about becoming the first hijabi reporter in Canadian broadcast media, but for a long time it was just that: a dream. I wasn’t sure it could ever be realized — not because of my own abilities, but because I wasn’t sure someone who looked like me would be accepted on Canadian TV.”

With her growing presence as a reporter and anchor on television, Massa joins a club with just a few members, most notably Noor Tagouri, an on-air reporter for Newsy, and Fatima Manji, a reporter for Channel 4 in the U.K.

Noor Tagouri in News Feature ‘The Trouble They’ve Seen: The Forest Haven Story’

Fatima Manji reports on the Ansbach terror attack for Channel 4

Source: Yahoo

Eki is the Editor for BellaNaija Style and Lifestyle Editor for She has a Vogue Fashion Certificate from Conde Nast College of Fashion & Design and also attended Central Saint Martins, London College of Fashion and the University of Kent. Eki headed the Design Operations at a top Nigerian womenswear fashion brand before finding love at BellaNaija Style.Eki loves all things creative. Follow her on Instagram @ekiogunbor BellaNaija Style: [email protected] | @bellanaijastyle BellaNaija Beauty: @bellanaijabeauty BellaNaija Living: [email protected] | @bellanaijaliving


  1. Simplymeana

    November 30, 2016 at 12:22 pm

    Shes good!! beautiful!! and of course a Muslima!!! Big ups

  2. Caramel chic

    November 30, 2016 at 2:36 pm

    I’m sorry..but this continues to puzzle me..

    What is Muslim beauty?? It perplexes me. Are we defining being Muslim by wearing a hijab? Hijab derives from the term “covering of the head”

    Which is actually the oldest cultural attire for women in history. Cutting across all continents. From Asia to Europe and Africanot defined by religion. If we define being a Muslim by the covering of the head are we doing a disservice to what ther religion really is about and what it represents. ?

    Even looking at Nigeria if you spend time with many of our grand parents. You will see that they tend to cover their head anytime they have guests visiting or they want to go out or go to a party. My question is do Muslim women feel like their is a “Muslim beauty” if so how do they define this? Or is it the media trying to find a way of being inclusive to other cultures that terms like “Muslim beauty” are used??

    • The Real Oma

      November 30, 2016 at 4:30 pm

      I don’t quite get the Muslim Beauty tag too, but if Muslim women are fine with it…

    • Ijebujesha

      November 30, 2016 at 7:17 pm

      In 2016, muslim.ladies are the ones generally known to cover their heads as a deference to their religious obligations, that explains the muslim beauty tag for women in hijab.I hope that clarifies it

  3. Simplymeana

    November 30, 2016 at 3:29 pm

    @caramel chic there is no such thing as a muslim,christian or wtv beauty,just as a muslim is not ‘entirely’ defined by the headscarf,there are lots of other must haves to be a muslim/muslima.We are simply 1 and beautiful regardless of the faith, and society we belong to.
    Yes the media have decided to define it as a muslim beauty because they think being a muslima means you must be confined,illiterate,unsophisticated and ugly,hence some muslima have taken it upon demselves to show the world that there is more to being a muslima than the negativity and the hate from the thouhgts……

  4. ijs

    December 2, 2016 at 10:28 am

    Can a christian woman or a woman of any other religion wear her hair uncovered on the news in any core muslim country? I have nothing against islam but Muslims need to give others the freedom that they want others to give to them. No other religion goes out to kill people for not belonging.

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