Ines Tazi is unafraid to make her opinions heard. “Growing up in Morocco, I have seen people fighting for their rights since birth,” she remembers. “I am immensely grateful to have been surrounded by many strong women in my family who have always encouraged me to express myself and speak up while keeping me grounded and making me conscious of my privileges. At times, I have felt out of place; wanting to do something but not knowing how and questioning my own positionality when trying to stand up against inequalities. However, I am starting to be at a place where I feel more confident about how to use my voice for good: I know why and how I can be of use!” She prides herself in her work with single mothers. “The ostracization, social stigmatization and legal discrimination of many single mothers in Morocco is something that needs to be talked about. Mothers around the world should be celebrated, whether single or not! Their economic and social rights should be protected and promoted. As a woman, a daughter, a granddaughter and one day, I hope, a mother, supporting single mothers means fighting for equality, for human rights. Working with the NGO INSAF has been life changing. They are making a difference in trying to allow women to gain autonomy and children to be children! I am honored that women have allowed me to be part of their journey. I am with them for the long-run and I intend to use my voice to support theirs.” Reality TV may seem unconventional for an activist like Ines, but it’s a fusion of her greatest joys. “You should have seen the faces of my relatives and friends when I told them that I was going to participate in a Netflix show soon after graduating with a degree in social science! To be honest, I was also surprised when I got the call for The Circle but soon realized that by staying true to who I am, I could do both! I have been passionate about acting and joined theater classes from a young age. I am a French and Arab entrepreneurial women’s rights advocate on reality TV shows. This makes some people uncomfortable, but I could not be prouder to work on both of my passions at the same time!”
Ines is a participant on Netflix’s new dating show, Perfect Match. Things apparently unfold quite dramatically, according to her. “I can best describe it as a love/dating Netflix Hunger Games with a cast of the Avengers! It is a crazy experiment! Netflix challenged us to date celebrities from other shows, with strong personalities (and egos). Some of us even had exes in the house! Most of the Netflix unscripted universe reunited together, can you imagine? And only the single ones! The show has a good dose of humor and absurdity!” Even though she may not find a soulmate, she’s looking forward to learning about herself. “I do not believe in the ‘one love’ romanticized idea, but I do believe that you will cross paths with some people whose energies, mindsets, goals, and hearts are aligned with yours. However, I have learned that a perfect match does not necessarily lead to a perfect relationship or to a relationship at all. I think that a healthy relationship requires a lot of self-awareness. I am learning every day about myself, listening to my body, understanding my boundaries, and establishing my non-negotiables. I am a firm believer that a healthy dose of internal work can free you to put yourself out there unapologetically, have fun and increase your chance to find the right person for YOU (and not according to society’s standards)!” While there’s no magic formula for romance, supporting your partner goes a long way. “Compatibility evolves over time; social media especially portrays these perfect couples which seem compatible on every point. We have to constantly remind ourselves not to put so much pressure on recreating these perfect seeming relationships. I would say that people that respect one another’s individuality and allow each other to make mistakes without judgment would be on the right path I believe. Preserving, nurturing, and respecting your partner’s space and individuality is key to being a strong couple! One point on which I would not derogate is having a compatible sense of humor.” The show throws a lot of curveballs, including the opportunity to match one another. “First, I must say it was wild beyond anything I could imagine (and I like to think that I have a crazy imagination)! I think the matchmaking twist says a lot about how we can behave when dating! Obviously, real life dating is not as high pressure, but it is interesting to see how we react under this environment and what we are ready to do. Are we necessarily driven by our ego? Do we want the person everybody wants? Is it the clout or do you have a connection? Can you stay inflexible on your integrity in any given situation? Let the experiment begin.”
Fashion has also piqued Ines’ interest as a means of self expression. “Dressing up is a simple and intuitive way to say complicated things. I have always been encouraged by my father (who works in fashion too) to dress up in a way that makes me feel empowered. However, my motto is buy less and buy better! I am not perfect, but I always try to remind myself that fashion has a huge environmental and social footprint.” Each outfit could be a statement in its own right. “I get inspired everyday, by everyone or everything, a feeling, an idea, or even the frustration I can get from seeing a sexist advertisement can inspire me to dress a certain way!. Dressing up reflects my relationship to the world and to myself. I want people to feel like it is okay to be bold and to try new styles. Following your own logic is essential, especially in the normative social influence that we are exposed to via social media!” She’s awestruck by the influence that fashion can have. “The power of fashion is immense. Body positivity, representation, inclusiveness…fashion is a tool to create a sense of community, to empower people and to change mentalities. It has the power to deliver messages to the masses and to unite people. Fashion is so nuanced that it is hard to pinpoint one thing. But it is important to remain minded that fashion is only a tool; as Saint Laurent rightly said, ‘Over the years I have learned that what is important in a dress is the woman who is wearing it.’ Ines keeps everything in perspective. Find out if she finds love. Perfect Match is now streaming on Netflix.
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Ines Tazi Searches For Her Next Love on “Perfect Match.” Photo Credit: Ben Cope.