Compare and Contrast the Hijab, Niqab, and Burka!

Many Muslim women across the globe observe the religious and modest tradition of wearing a veil or head covering called a hijab (Arabic for “cover,” “screen,” or “partition”). While different types of veils are worn by Muslim women, their clothing depends on factors such as cultural background, branch of Islam practised, and individual taste. These are the hijabs that Muslim women throughout the globe wear the most often.


The word “hijab” is commonly used as a catchall for the head covering worn by practising Muslim women. Today, it also means a woman’s head- and neck-covering garment that exposes just the face. Many factors, including individual taste and societal norms, contribute to the variety of styles available today. Some Muslim women wear the hijab tightly over their heads, while others wear it loosely and expose their necks. Scarves for the hijab may be whatever colour or material the wearer likes, which is also a personal choice.


Muslim women in Central Asia sometimes cover their whole bodies with the burka, a long, bulky garment with a face grille. The Pashtun women of Afghanistan and West Pakistan have been known to wear this headdress as a sign of their social status and respect even before Islam was a part of their culture.


The niqab, or face veil, is often worn by Muslim women and is black. A headscarf and an abaya or similar loose-fitting robe are standard accessories for women while wearing this. The two most common ways of wearing this veil are based on culture and custom. Many women in the Gulf region wear the so-called “full niqab,” which conceals the whole face and leaves a tiny opening for the eyes. Veiling the face’s lower part up to the nose’s bridge, the ‘half niqab’ leaves the eyes and forehead uncovered. Styles similar to this are popular in South Asia and North Africa.


Unlike full-face veils, the al-amira consists of two separate pieces. It consists of a fitted hat and a scarf wrapped around the neck and back. Wearing this style is common in Southeast Asia.


In the Gulf nations, ladies often wear the Shayla, a long rectangular scarf usually wrapped around the head. The Shayla is a versatile garment that may be worn with an abaya or anything else, and the cloth comes in a wide range of materials and colours to suit individual tastes. While the notion of hijab refers to wearing modestly for religious reasons, the word “Shayla” refers specifically to a headscarf that leaves the face exposed in the Gulf.


The khimar is a veil with a facial opening, much like the al-amira. The top envelops the wearer, concealing the head, neck, and shoulders. The khimar may be worn at different lengths, with some ladies preferring it to reach the knees. Egyptian ladies wear it all the time.

Women in Iran (and other countries with significant Shia populations) have worn the chador for millennia. It’s a wrap that goes over the head and around the body, much like a shawl. Instead of using pins or tucking it in, the chador is always worn open or closed with the hands. Most people only see black ones when they go out in public, but at home or in the mosque, people will wear various sorts of colours.


Today’s youth give the Muslim women clothing greater cultural than religious meaning; they wear it only on rare occasions. However, many elderly ladies wear it, particularly in rural areas. You can get them at great prices on several websites and retail stores.

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