Footwear

Baes With Kicks: Shahd Batal

The LA-based content creator merges her modest fashion style with her love for sneakers.

By
6,132 Hypes

Our latest Baes With Kicks feature takes us to Los Angeles to meet Sudanese-American YouTuber and content creator Shahd Batal. A true Nike fan, the influencer’s impressive collection currently has 50 pairs and counting. From her trusty Stussy x Nike Spiridon Cage 2 “Fossil,” to her extensive collection of Dunk Lows, Batal fuses her modest fashion style with her love for sneakers. “I was really just experimenting with my personal style and styling the hijab, and I think I just woke up one morning and decided streetwear is actually inherently modest and I should just wear what I want,” Batal shares with HYPEBAE, reflecting on when she started taking her sneaker collection seriously.

To get to know more about the LA creative, we spoke to Batal about her favorite footwear silhouettes, the inspiration behind her modest looks and more. Read on for our interview.

Name: Shahd Batal

City: Los Angeles

Occupation: Content creator

How many pairs of sneakers do you own?

Currently around 50 and building.

shahd batal sneaker collector collection los angeles content creator influencer youtuber sudanese american hijab

Shahd Batal

When did you start taking your collection seriously?

It’s hard to say, honestly. I got into sneakers during my senior year of high school back in 2014 and built a collection then. However, for some strange reason that doesn’t make sense to me anymore, I felt a little weird wearing sneakers once I put on my hijab. When I searched for fashion inspiration, all the modest outfits I saw back then were very feminine — lots of skirts and dresses. There were very few streetwear-modest fashion bloggers and far between. I was really just experimenting with my personal style and styling the hijab, and I think I just woke up one morning and decided streetwear is actually inherently modest and I should just wear what I want. That’s when I started rebuilding my collection.

Do you recall the first silhouette you copped or received as a gift?

I can’t remember exactly, but it had to be either the Nike Air Max 90 or Air Force 1 in high school.

shahd batal sneaker collector collection los angeles content creator influencer youtuber sudanese american hijab

Shahd Batal

Can you name your top three pairs and explain why you treasure them the most?

Nike Air Force 1: It’ll always be a classic and it matches with everything.

Nike Dunk Low: I love all my colorways of the Dunk Low. It’s probably my most worn shoes.

Stussy x Nike Spiridon Cage 2 “Fossil”: They’re so comfortable and I don’t think I have any sneakers like them.

What is the rarest shoe you own?

I still can’t believe I actually got my hands on the Dior Air Jordan 1.

Where do you usually purchase your sneakers from?

Either GOAT, other resellers like @kicksncollect or friend plugs.

We’ve seen a number of notable women’s exclusive sneaker releases in recent years. Which silhouettes stand out to you the most?

The Air Jordan 1 Mid “Fearless” by Melody Ehsani because of what it stands for and how fun they are. I’m bummed that I never got my hands on them.

“Inclusion gives voice and opportunity to everyone at the forefront and behind the scenes. It creates a safe and comfortable environment that fosters great work.”

Let’s talk about your YouTube channel. You used to make hair tutorial videos but started to wear a hijab around four years ago. Why did you decide to make the change?

I was just going through a lot in my life at the time and turned back to religion. I always knew I wanted to wear the hijab at some point in my life, and it just felt like the right time. I wasn’t thinking about the Internet or followers or anything external really. All I knew was that it felt like the right decision and I’d figure out everything else after.

shahd batal sneaker collector collection los angeles content creator influencer youtuber sudanese american hijab

Shahd Batal

You also have a great fashion sense. What are the inspirations behind your modest looks?

I’m definitely all over the place because I love versatility. A lot of my inspiration is from social media. I’ve been enjoying Pinterest simply because I find what I need minus the social aspect, which is nice sometimes. I also gain a lot of inspiration from my friends. Like I mentioned earlier, most streetwear is modest, so I just look at that and think about how I can tweak a certain style to work for me.

How do you think the footwear industry can further improve its diversity and inclusivity efforts?

For starters, understanding that diversity and inclusion aren’t the same things. Hiring different types of models in campaigns for diversity points is performative, boring and everyone sees right through it. We’re past the point of representation conversations. Inclusion gives voice and opportunity to everyone at the forefront and behind the scenes. It creates a safe and comfortable environment that fosters great work.

Read Full Article
Share this article

What to Read Next

These Seafoam Green Chairs Are Designed To Complement Any Space
Home

These Seafoam Green Chairs Are Designed To Complement Any Space

Massproductions’ new furnishings work indoors and out.
415 Hypes

Brushing Your Teeth Has Never Been Cooler, Thanks to These Trendy "Oral Beauty" Brands
Beauty 

Brushing Your Teeth Has Never Been Cooler, Thanks to These Trendy "Oral Beauty" Brands

Amidst the pandemic, companies have elevated dental hygiene from ho-hum chore to stylish self-care routine.
1,147 Hypes

Tour This Manhattan Apartment Filled With Scandinavian Influences and Modern Furniture
Home 

Tour This Manhattan Apartment Filled With Scandinavian Influences and Modern Furniture

Architectural designer Oda Olafsrud has transformed this duplex into a dreamy sanctuary.
6,214 Hypes

A BTS-Themed Meal Is Coming to McDonald's Next Month
Food

A BTS-Themed Meal Is Coming to McDonald's Next Month

Giving fans a taste of the K-pop supergroup’s signature order.
5,334 Hypes

Camper Is Relaunching the Kobarah Sandal in Three New Colors
Footwear

Camper Is Relaunching the Kobarah Sandal in Three New Colors

The cool-girl favorite is back.
3,486 Hypes

YEEZY x Gap Logo Confirmed in New Trademark Filing
Fashion

YEEZY x Gap Logo Confirmed in New Trademark Filing

And it’s pretty much what you’d expect.
2,159 Hypes

Our Editor Reviews 4 Popular Activewear Sets Designed in the Philippines
Fashion 

Our Editor Reviews 4 Popular Activewear Sets Designed in the Philippines

These are the sports bras and leggings I’ve been working out in at home.
8,182 Hypes

Drôle de Monsieur SS21 Is Fit for the French Riviera
Fashion

Drôle de Monsieur SS21 Is Fit for the French Riviera

The label spotlights its latest collection in a new lookbook, “La Femme Drôle.”
654 Hypes

Sustainable Swimwear Label Lokiki Debuts New Styles for the Summer
Fashion

Sustainable Swimwear Label Lokiki Debuts New Styles for the Summer

Bikinis and one pieces dressed in neutral shades of white, black and olive green.
2,245 Hypes


More ▾