In the name of Allah ,the Most Beneficent, the Most Merciful

Niqab muslim woman dress muslim veil

Hijab literally means a "Veil", a "Curtain", a Partition" or a "Separation". In Shariah terms Hijab does not just refer to the head covering. It is about covering everything of a woman thus leading to a separation of her beauty from men who are not her Mahrem. This will also include her clothing, they way she smells, the way she talks and the way she walks.

For some strange reason Hijab has been mistaken for the head covering. The head covering is actually the Khimaar.

Narrated Anas:
Um (the mother of) Haritha came to Allah's Apostle after Haritha had been martyred on the Day (of the battle) of Badr by an arrow thrown by an unknown person. She said, "O Allah's Apostle! You know the position of Haritha in my heart (i.e. how dear to me he was), so if he is in Paradise, I will not weep for him, or otherwise, you will see what I will do." The Prophet said, "Are you mad? Is there only one Paradise? There are many Paradises, and he is in the highest Paradise of Firdaus." The Prophet added, "A forenoon journey or an after noon journey in Allah's Cause is better than the whole world and whatever is in it; and a place equal to an arrow bow of anyone of you, or a place equal to a foot in Paradise is better than the whole world and whatever is in it; and if one of the women of Paradise looked at the earth, she would fill the whole space between them (the earth and the heaven) with light, and would fill whatever is in between them, with perfume, and the veil of her face is better than the whole world and whatever is in it.(Bukhari Volume 8, Book 76, Number 572 )

The story of Hijab

Many of the rulings of Islam were revealed at different stages of the Prophet's (peace upon him) life. Things like the banning of alcohol, the order to do Jihad and the order for Hijab was given in the Madina period. That is when the Muslims fled persecution in Makkah to the City of Madina and established a small Islamic state there. Before that the Muslim women did not cover completely but at the same time did not dress provocatively.

In fact scholars such as Al Qurtubee have told us that women in the past (i.e before the order of Hijab) used to cover their heads with a khimaar, throwing its ends behind their backs. Thus  leaving the neck and upper and upper part of the chest bare, in the manner of the Christians.

Unfortunately we find today women who dress in this way claim that they are observing Hijab, When in reality this was how many women in Makkah and Madina dressed before the command for Hijab. As you can see any women dressing in such a man can be recognised from her face by others. Even today we have in some Christian communities women who dress in such a way when going to church.

The story of Hijab  begins due to Umar's great respect and desire to protect  the honour of the Mothers of the Believers (the Prophet's wives). Bukhari reported:

'The wives of the Prophet used to go to Al-Manasi, a vast open place (near Baqia at Medina) to answer the call of nature at night. 'Umar used to say to the Prophet "Let your wives be veiled," but Allah's Apostle did not do so. One night Sauda bint Zam'a the wife of the Prophet went out at 'Isha' time and she was a tall lady. 'Umar addressed her and said, "I have recognized you, O Sauda." He said so, as he desired eagerly that the verses of Al-Hijab (the observing of veils by the Muslim women) may be revealed. So Allah revealed the verses of "Al-Hijab" (A complete body cover excluding the eyes).' (Bukhari)

We learn from this hadith the wives of the Prophet held a very high position in Islam and thus any malicious talk about them would be a direct attack on the Prophet and on Islam. So Umar did not want anyone to recognise them when they went out of their homes.

How is a woman recognised? Is it by her hair or her face?

Whenever an identity check is required, seeing a women's face is both essential and sufficient. Whenever a lady wants to do something that requires an Identity check. Her face is checked to see if it is actually her. It is her face that is checked not her hair.   Even if her hair does not match it is said  the person in real life and the one in the passport photo is the same. Then security clearance is given. A guard will not say "Hey, I need to see your hair, but you can keep your face covered because I can identify you from your hair."

We can all tell the difference between faces and to whom the face belongs too in 99.99 percent of the time. But to recognise and differentiate people by looking at their hair would be highly inaccurate and  impossible.

Revelation of the order to Hijab

After Umar's requests for the Prophets wives to be veiled. Allah revealed the following verse.

"O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their jalaabeeb ( outer garments, cloaks) all over their bodies. That will be better, that they should be known (as free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed. And Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful"

[al-Ahzaab 33:59]

Then the women began to observe Hijab in front of men. 

It was narrated that Aisha (may Allah be pleased with her) said: "May Allah have mercy on the women of the Muhaajireen. When Allah revealed the words (interpretation of the meaning)

 "and to draw their Khumur all over Juyoobihinna "

[al-Noor 24:31], they tore their aprons and covered their faces with them." 

(Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 4480)


Allah says in Surah An Noor

And tell the believing women to lower their gaze, and protect their private parts (from illegal sexual acts, etc.) and not to show off their Zeenah  except only that which is apparent , and to draw their Khumur all over Juyubihinna  and not to reveal their adornment except to their husbands, their fathers, their husband's fathers, their sons, their husband's sons, their brothers or their brother's sons, or their sister's sons, or their (Muslim) women (i.e. their sisters in Islam), or the (female) slaves whom their right hands possess, or old male servants who lack vigour, or small children who have no sense of the shame of sex. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And all of you beg Allah to forgive you all, O believers, that you may be successful. (24:31)

Khumur is plural for Khimaar which is headcovering.

Juyubihinna meaning entire bodies.

Zeenah literally could be translated as adornment so would cover her natural beauty and things with which she adorns her self like jewellery, make up, eye shadow, mascara, henna, attractive clothing etc.


Some of the salaf, such as Ibn Mas’ood, al-Hasan, Ibn Sireen and others interpreted the phrase “except only that which is apparent” as meaning the outer garment and clothes, and what shows from beneath the outer garment (i.e., the hem of one’s dress etc.).

It was narrated from Aisha" that Safwaan ibn al-Mu�attal al-Sulami al-Dhakwaani was lagging behind the army. He came to where I had stopped and saw the black shape of a person sleeping. He recognized me when he saw me, because he had seen me before Hijab was enjoined. I woke up when I heard him saying "Inna Lillaahi wa inna ilayhi raaji�oon (verily to Allah we belong and unto Him is our return)," when he saw me, and I covered my face with my Jilbab." 

(Narrated by al-Bukhaari, 3910; Muslim, 2770) 


Thus the Hijab therefore means  cover every part of a woman's body.

Umars was only asking the Prophet peace be upon him to make his wives cover because of their special position in Islam.  However, Allah not only honoured the wives of the Prophet but He also honoured all the Muslim females by ordering them to cover too.

From the above hadiths we learn that a Muslimah (Muslim female) should wear a head covering (khymaar)which goes over her head , neck, face and Breasts and that she covers the rest of her body with an outer cloak( a Jilbab/Abya ).

There is a dispute amongst scholars as to whether the face Must be covered or if it is recommended. I explained what the differences are and what is the ruling on covering the face in great detail on following link Is Niqab Fard (compulsory) or not?

 Style and Purpose of the Hijab (full body covering)

Allah has blessed men and women in different ways.

Men for instance on a whole have been blessed with more strength than women. Some men may desires to show off their power on other men or on the physically weaker sex or children.

However, Allah forbids men to  misuse that strength. The extra strength is given to men for positive things. Such as physical work, fighting for Allah's cause and defending ones family and the weak.

Similarly women have been blessed with a face, body, hair, speech and bodily movement which can be used in a very positive way which is to excite her husband and relieve him from both sexual tension and  the stress of daily life. By doing so she will have a happier marital life and have her own desires fulfilled. However, she is forbidden to misuse this power of sexual appeal. By causing others to be excited by her. This would be harmful to both her self and to the society 

In societies were women uncovering their aura and free mixing of the sex's is common place there is a huge number of rapes. Even though availability of sex is easy and the law and order system is fairly stable. In USA with its large police force, there is still one rape every minute.

The reason is we live in this world not heaven. In heaven there are no criminals but earth is swamped with criminals who take what they like even at the expense of others.

A jewel thief will take a jewel because he has desires for the Jewel due to its beauty or what the  Jewel can provide. Such as money and supposed happiness.

Similarly a rapist will take a women because of her appeal against her wishes in the hope that she will provide him with pleasure.

The police here  makes campaigns like" Remove it or Loose it"  or "hide it or loose it " (meaning don't leave your Tom Tom's attached your  car window or your handbags, mobile phones inside your cars were thieves can see from your car windows that there is some nice things to grab. If these things are visible they will just break the car window and get them from you. If they are not afraid of authority they could easily put a gun to your head or a knife and say hand you possessions over.).

Similarly in those hearts which have a disease and do not fear Allah they will take a woman who is sexually appealing against her wishes. Even for those who are not rapists, they may be so affected by her beauty that they will wish to pursue her and harass her with seductive techniques.

The purpose of the Hijab (full body covering not just head) is to minimise sexual appeal to the opposite sex So that when a man looks at you he doesn't have desires to get friendly with you or date you or have sex with you.

The Hijab hides all of her body because all of her body is appealing to men. Which includes the feet and the ankles

So her head covering (khymaar) should go from her head down below her breasts and her Outer garment (Jilbab) be thick and very loose so that there is no way that the shape of her body can be seen.

 Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him): “There are two types of the people of Hell whom I have not yet seen: people with whips like the tails of cattle with which they strike the people, and women who are clothed yet naked, astray and leading others astray, with their heads like the humps of camels, leaning to one side. They will not enter Paradise nor even smell its fragrance, although it fragrance may be detected from such and such a distance.” Narrated by Muslim, 2128.

It should be a cubit length long so that her feet are not shown.

The dress should also not resemble dress of the non Muslims

 That is because the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: “Whoever imitates a people is one of them.” Narrated by Abu Dawood, 4031; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Jaami’ al-Sagheer

and it should not be dress for fame, showing off. Some people wear designer dress's not because they may be good quality but so they can show of and say I am wearing a Gucci and or I am so rich, have the latest fashion and so on. Showing off is considered as minor shirk.

The cloth must not be be not be attractive and not be appealing. As we know presents are often wrapped in  attractive cloths or paper in order to be appealing. They have the effect of drawing the persons eyes and hearts to them. So that would defeat the purpose of Hijab.

Some times shaytaan says to sisters you look more beautiful in Hijab and more men look at you when your wearing Hijab. Firstly, this is why the face should be covered and the eyes should be lowered. Secoundly men may look at a sister in full Islamic dress with her face covered and her eyes lowered and not very visible this may be due to curiosity of why is she dressed like that. That is different than causing him to look at you and think wow she's pretty I want to date her,

Even in such cases, women have been told to only go out for their necessities. Allah created us and knows what is best for us.

Another excuse is my husband does not like me wearing Hijab. Well you were not created to please your husband. You were created to please Allah.

On the day of judgement it will not be your husband who will judge whether you go to hell or heaven. It will be Allah who will decide whether you should go hell or heaven.

 Your husband no matter how important he seems to you will himself be frightened as to what is to become of him on the day of judgement. On that day he will be totally helpless and he will be so frightened as to what will become of him that he will not even glance at you, nor his children nor his parents. All he will think is about himself.

On that day you too will only think about yourself. You will not think about your husband, children nor parents. All you will think about is yourself.

Another problem that sisters face is that they want to look fashionable in front of other women.

Firstly the rules of Islam are clear that you must wear full Islamic dress outside or even inside if there are non Mahrem men present. If you are in a house with sisters you do not have to wear Hijab but of course you have to cover your some parts still. Such as your chest and private areas, thighs etc. When a person wants to look good for her self when she is by her self or with just her Mahrems or just other sisters then that's fine as long as she doesn't wear inappropriate clothing. But if she wants show of to others that she is fashionable or has expensive designer cloths. Then that is going towards Riya and Riya is minor shirk.

Would you want to go to hell for other women?

In many cases these women may not even like you. hey may back bite about you. They may even get jealous and give you an evil eye.

What is a Cubit and Covering the Feet

It was narrated that Ibn ‘Umar said: The Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Whoever allows his garment to drag out of pride, Allah will not look at him on the Day of Resurrection.” Umm Salamah said: “What should women do with their hems?” He said: “Lower it a handspan.” She said: “Then their feet will show.” He said: “Let them lower it a cubit, but no more than that.” (Narrated by al-Tirmidhi, 1731; al-Nasaa’i, 5336; classed as saheeh by al-Albaani in Saheeh al-Tirmidhi. )

To find out what a Cubit  is. you should take a measurement from your elbow to your longest finger and that will be 1 cubit. Then suppose this measurement was 14 inches. You would measure 14 inches from your shin down to the floor and that will give you the length of  your Jilbab or Abya. Thus it will be dragging the floor.

Thus this above hadith shows how long the woman's dress should be and it shows it can drag but cannot exceed more than a cubit because more than that even for a women would become Haram. (note men they cannot have their garment passing below their ankles)

It was narrated that the umm walad [a concubine who had borne a child to her master] of Ibraaheem ibn ‘Abd al-Rahmaan ibn ‘Awf said: I used to drag my ‘tail’ (i.e., let my garment drag along the ground) and I would pass through filthy places and clean places. Umm Salamah entered upon me and I asked her about that, and she said: I heard the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) say: “What comes after it purifies it.” (Narrated by Imam Ahmad, 25949; al-Tirmidhi, 143; Ibn Maajah, 531. Classed as saheeh by al-Albaani. See Saheeh Abi Dawood, 369).

These hadiths prove that a woman should cover her feet and ankles. It is not surprising because as we know many women try to beautify their feet with polish and heena. They even check which shoe makes their feet look more attractive and you will find women trying to mach shoes and so many money is spent on shoes. Some women will have whole cupboards full of different kind of shoes. An attractive show may draw a males attention to her.

Furthermore, some men are highly attracted to woman's ankles. Some have said you can see from her ankle what kind of body she has.

With regards to feet some men have extreme desire for suckling women's feet and some women even demand this from their husbands as part of her love making.

Several sisters have said they who did not cover feet said they had guys checking out their feet and even making comments about skin colour and so on.

In east London (White Chapel) there is a large Muslim community and the sisters there adhere to the wrong belief that they can expose their feet. There was once a discussion about some topic(possibly women) on television. A non Muslim woman said that she heard of an old man English  man  walking along White Chapel, seeing women covered and just the sight of their ankles lead to him having an erection. This is quite a believable story as the seeing the ankles could lead to him fantasise about touching the nice skin on her ankles and then moving upwards.

The beauty of the Islamic Abaya sweeping the floor is like she has it almost nailed on the ground and is saying there is no way to enter. Go somewhere else.

Many sisters say who are new to the Islamic dress code have worries about tripping. However many sisters wear this and have said that they eventually learn to get used to it.


Wearing anklets and Healed shoes

 During the time of the Prophet (peace be upon him) some women used to wear anklets and if they wanted to draw attention they could stamp their feet and thereby making the anklets tingle/ Allah revealed the following verse prohibiting this practise.

“And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment”

[al-Noor 24:31]

Narrated AbuSa'id al-Khudri: 
Allah's Apostle (peace be upon him) said: There was a woman from Banu Isra'il who was short-statured and she walked in the company of two tall women, with wooden sandals in her feet and a ring of gold made of plates with musk filled in them and then looked up, and musk is the best of scents; then she walked between two women and they (the people) did not recognize her, and she made a gesture with her hand like this, and Shu'bah shook his hand in order to give an indication how she shook her hand.
Muslim 20: Book Number: 26, Hadith Number: 5598


During our times women wear healed shows which make tik tak sound. When the men hear this their hearts start doing bhangra dance. Like kuri kuri behind me (girl, girl behind me or there goes a girl). The healed shoes are even more effective at drawing men's attention. In fact they could even give an indication as to how strong her legs are. Many years ago I hear a not religiously committed Muslim commenting about a not religiously committed Muslim who would walk and almost make the ground shake saying she is a big ,strong girl and would give a good etc etc.

Therefore a Muslimah should wear shoes which do not make sound and are relatively flat.

The high heals have an  added sexual effect in that the make her buttocks sway more and they make her cleavage stick out more. Thus this leaning forward makes the men's hearts lean forward to her breasts.

We should realise that fashion was not first invented in Paris but rather this sort of fashion was invented in the shaytans factory a long time ago to strip humans from the honour that Allah has bestowed upon them. Shaytan want humans to dwell in hellfire with him. Shaytan knows he will go to hell for his arrogance and he wants to take as many humans with him as possible because he blames humans for his own destruction.

Wearing Pants, Salwar kamiz and Saris

Some Muslims believe that Saris are fine to wear because in their countries Muslim women Saris. Islam is not based on what Muslim women wear but its is based on the Quran and Sunnah.

The Sari hugs the body. It is not Islamically acceptable to wear such a dress when going outside the house or when in front of non Mahrem men.

The salwar kamiz is also an unacceptable form of dress to wear in front of Non Mahrems and when outside The material is thin. The body upper body shape is seen. Her shape can be seen her breasts size can be clearly seen even in the most modest of Salawar kamizs. Her feet are visible. Even if she covers them with socks their size can be seen.

The Pants or jeans no matter how loose they show to some degree her thighs. Even I have herd men who have seen women in pants talk about how they wish grab the women's ankles and split her legs and then the rest you can imagine. This could well be similar case with The Salawar kamiz.

So none of these cloths are acceptable to be work solely on their own without an abya on top of them.

Some Asian sisters are confused because their parents think the salwar Kamiz is an Islamic dress and they believe their parents and then they compare the Salawar Kamiz with the western Pants and shirts or the jeans and t shirts and they find very little difference between these styles of dress. So they think its ok to go outside or be in presence of non mahrem men wear jeans and t shirts because their parents feel its ok to go out in salwar kamiz,

So if you do wish to wear a salwar kamiz or pants then please wear an abya on top when you go outdoors or if you are in the presence of non Mahrem men. Lest you fall into the category of being clothed yet naked to some extent.

Clothes of a woman and her behaviour should not be same as man

  Ibn 'Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him and his father) reported that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: "Allaah has cursed the men who make themselves look like women and the women who make themselves look like men." (Reported by al-Bukhaari; see al-Fath, 10/332).

 Also narrated by Abu Hurayrah (may Allaah be pleased with him): "Allaah has cursed the man who wears women's clothes and the woman who wear men's clothes." (Reported by Abu Dawud, 4/355; see also Saheeh al-Jaami', 5071).

Ibn 'Abbaas (may Allaah be pleased with him and his father) also reported that the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: "Allaah has cursed effeminate men and masculine women." (Reported by al-Bukhaari, see al-Fath, 3\10/333).Reported by Imaam Ahmad, 2/444; see also Saheeh al-Jaami’, 2703).

Etiquettes of walking

A woman should not sway her body when she is walking out side and in presence of non Mehrem men

 Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him): “There are two types of the people of Hell whom I have not yet seen: people with whips like the tails of cattle with which they strike the people, and women who are clothed yet naked, astray and leading others astray, with their heads like the humps of camels, leaning to one side. They will not enter Paradise nor even smell its fragrance, although it fragrance may be detected from such and such a distance.” Narrated by Muslim, 2128.

Etiquettes of Speaking

A woman should not be soft in speech

 Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“O wives of the Prophet! You are not like any other women. If you keep your duty (to Allah), then be not soft in speech, lest he in whose heart is a disease (of hypocrisy, or evil desire for adultery) should be moved with desire, but speak in an honourable manner”

[al-Ahzaab 33:32]

Wearing Perfume

Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said: “Any woman who wears perfume then goes out to the mosque, so that the fragrance can be discerned, her prayers will not be accepted until she performs ghusl like the ghusl to be performed when in a state of janaabah.” (Reported by Imaam Ahmad, 2/444; see also Saheeh al-Jaami’, 2703).

 Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), who said: “Any woman who applies perfume and then goes out among the people so that they could smell her fragrance is a zaaniyah (adulteress).” (Reported by Imaam Ahmad, 4/418; see also Saheeh al-Jaami’, 105).

However a Muslimah may wear perfume inside her house for her husband or even for her self as long as there are no non Mahrem men present but if she needs to go out then she must take a shower or bath in order to remove the smell.

A women can also apply perfume which does not smell (ie is extremely light in smell) on her private  paces were the traces of blood run after her ending of her menstrual period. (see women's ghusl in prayer section )

 In front of whom one does not need to wear Hijab

(Allah says (interpretation of the meaning):
“It is no sin on them (the Prophet’s wives, if they appear unveiled) before their fathers, or their sons, or their brothers, or their brother’s sons, or the sons of their sisters, or their own (believing) women, or their (female) slaves. And (O ladies), fear (keep your duty to) Allah. Verily, Allah is Ever All‑Witness over everything”

[al-Ahzaab 33:55]

What age can a woman remove her Hijab

Allaah says (interpretation of the meaning):

“And as for women past childbearing who do not expect wedlock, it is no sin on them if they discard their (outer) clothing in such a way as not to show their adornment. But to refrain (i.e. not to discard their outer clothing) is better for them. And Allaah is All‑Hearer, All‑Knower”

[al-Noor 24:60]


Ruling on