For some people, wearing Muslim dresses is an assentation of cultural identity and religion. But for others, it symbolizes oppression of the women. Although in the recent past, controversies have focused on what the Muslim women wear, it is important to note that, Muslim men also do have a code of dressing.
The Muslim rules are open to so many interpretations with some Muslim women believing that it is necessary to cover the entire body while others don’t even observe any dress code at all.
The word hijab comes from an Arabic word for the veil and in general, it is used to describe the headscarves for women of the Muslim religion. They come in different colors and styles. In the west, the most common one is a scarf that is square in design which covers the neck and the head but ensures that the face is not covered.
The one referred to as an Al-amira is a veil that consists of two pieces. It has a tube-like a scarf and a close-fitting cap, which is normally made from polyester or cotton. A Shayla refers to a long scarf which is rectangular in shape and it is popular in the Gulf region, wrapped around the head and pinned or tucked in place at the shoulders.
The chador is normally worn by most Iranian women when they are outside the house and it is a cloak for the whole body, accompanied by a smaller headscarf that is normally underneath. The Khimar is normally long and hangs up to above the waist. It covers the neck, hair, and shoulders completely, but leaves the face clear of any covering.
A burka is one of the most concealing veils for Muslims as it covers the entire body and face, leaving just a mesh screen which you can use to see through. The Niqab is a veil which is meant for the face, leaving the eye area clear and you can wear it with a separate eye veil. It comes with an accompanying headscarf.