Different types of hijab

Head scarf
The headscarf warn by the vast majority of women is known commonly as the hijab, as discussed earlier, this can be somewhat confusing. This headscarf should cover the head, neck and chest, whilst leaving the face clear. This is the commonly accepted version of hijab as required under islamic statutes on dress. This type of headscarf is usually rectangular or can be square. The square hijab is more of a turkic centric style, and is becoming less common in favour of more rectangular wraps.

The khimar is a long head covering, similar to a prayer garment. This scarf is sewn to be a one piece garment, which covers from the head and hangs down to the middle of the back, this type of hijab covers the head, neck and shoulders, leaving the face clear, but going over the arms.

Like the khimar, this is a long head covering, sewn as one piece, except this time, the garment flows all the way down to the feet. This type of garment is more familiar to iran. It can also be seen across afghanistan and north west pakistan.

The Burqa is similar to the chador, except it covers the face too, leaving a small meh to allow the woman to see through. This is much more common in afghanistan. There is a possibility that this tradition remains there as one of the tribes of Israel, “yusuf zai” (Sons of joseph) have lived there for thousands of years, which takes some of the orthodox principles of judaism and applied to afghani pashtun culture.

The niqab is a face covering that leaves a small opening for the eyes. This is warn with a khimar, but on some occasions is warn with the headscarf.


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