Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 19 August 2019

Ramadan 2019: Which celebrities fast during the holy month?

From Halima Aden to Mohamed Hadid, here are the famous faces who will probably mark Ramadan this year

SZA at the 2018 Grammy Awards. AFP
SZA at the 2018 Grammy Awards. AFP

The holy month is almost upon us. It's a time when Muslims around the world will observe a month of fasting in keeping with the Quran's divine commandment.

Among those abstaining from food and drink during daylight hours are also several famous faces, who are believed to observe Ramadan as part of their faith.

Below, we round up the celebrities that mark the holy month.

Jermaine Jackson

Jermaine Jackson performs at Morocco's Mawazine Festival. Talks are under way with potential investors on building Jermajesty, a five-star resort dedicated to the legendary family's musical history.
Jermaine Jackson performs at Morocco's Mawazine Festival

The singer and former member of The Jackson 5 converted to Islam in 1989 after a trip to Bahrain. He has previously spoken about the importance of fasting to his faith, telling The National in 2013 it is crucial for him to "fulfil my obligations in Islam and accepting God in my heart".

"It is also the most important time because we sacrifice some of our day-to-day things and think about those that are less fortunate," he added, while talking about Ramadan. "We fast but we also eat at iftar every day while other people don't have that luxury. So you think about those that don't have it easy - and by reflecting on that and giving charity, it brings you closer to God."

Halima Aden

Halima Aden launched her own line of hijabs on day one of Modanisa Istanbul Fashion Week 
Halima Aden at Modanisa Fashion Week

The Somali-American model, who has worked with labels including Max Mara and Alberta Ferretti and fronted the cover of magazines such as Allure, first rose to fame in 2016 after wearing traditional Muslim dress to compete in a US beauty pageant. Aden, 21, regularly shares anecdotes from the holy month on her Twitter account, and has previously revealed she also sleeps a lot when she's fasting.

Yusuf Islam

Yusuf Islam, formerly known as Cat Stevens, performs at the memorial for victims of the Christchurch mosque attacks on March 29, 2019. Reuters
Yusuf Islam performs at the memorial for victims of the Christchurch mosque attacks. Reuters

The musician, formerly known as Cat Stevens, formally converted to Islam in 1977, and has previously told The National that the holy month is a time to "remember how valuable charity and the inner aspects of the fast are".

"Fasting and staying away from food and drink is a choice we make, but while so many are suffering the pains of hunger and war, Ramadan is the best time to sympathise and give what we can to help awaken our humanity," the Father & Son singer added.

Mahershala Ali

TOPSHOT - Best Supporting Actor winner for "Green Book" Mahershala Ali poses in the press room with his Oscar during the 91st Annual Academy Awards at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood, California on February 24, 2019. / AFP / FREDERIC J. BROWN
Best Supporting Actor winner for 'Green Book, Mahershala Al. AFP

The Oscar-winning Green Book actor hasn't even stated on the record that he observes Ramadan, though the 45-year-old has spoken numerous times about his faith. "My mother is an ordained minister, I’m a Muslim – she didn’t do backflips when I called her to tell her I’d converted 17 years ago but I tell you now you put things to the side and I am able to see her she is able to see me, we love each other, the love has grown and [the other stuff] is minutiae," Ali said at the 2017 SAG Awards.

Iman Abdulmajid

The Somali-born supermodel, who is the widow of British music legend David Bowie, doesn't share much about her experience during Ramadan, but regularly tweets out her well wishes to fellow Muslims during the holy month and at Eid.

Mohamed Hadid

The real-estate mogul – and father of models Gigi, Bella and Anwar – revealed in a 2010 interview with Modern Luxury that while he doesn't consider himself a "devout" Muslim, he does fast during Ramadan. Hadid, who has Jordanian and American citizenship, has Palestinian heritage, which his children have frequently stated they are proud to share.

Ramy Youssef

Egyptian-American stand-up comedian Ramy Youssef gets his own show on Hulu. Instagram / @ramy
Egyptian-American stand-up comedian Ramy YoussefInstagram / @ramy

The Egyptian-American comedian, who stars in Hulu series Ramy that he co-created, drew on his own experiences of Ramadan for the show. The comedy follows a young man attempting to navigate being a modern, practising Muslim in a millennial generation in New Jersey, with the eponymous character breaking his fast at an all-night diner.

Lupe Fiasco

The American rapper and music producer revealed on Twitter in 2014 that Islam "plays a part in my life and everything I do, to a certain extent". A year later, the Battle Scars star teamed up with LSNP clothing to create a range of T-shirts that honoured Ramadan, and in 2012 he distributed meals in Chicago to those in need every day throughout the holy month.


The singer and songwriter, born Solana Imani Rowe, revealed in Interview magazine in 2013 that she grew up practising Islam, telling the publication: "During Ramadan, I fasted with my dad." The All the Stars artist, who has shared Ramadan kareem messages with fans on her social media pages, also reportedly damaged her vocal cords from trying to sing while fasting last year, according to Nashville radio station The Beat.


Read more:

International iftars and suhoors to try this Ramadan

Ramadan 2019: What is it about Vimto that makes it such a staple of the holy month?

Ramadan 2019: Emirates is set to serve 1 million dates this year


Updated: April 26, 2019 02:50 AM