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Fashion / Dress Code
It should be noted that despite the popular belief that it is only women in Islam that have a dress code the general principles actually apply to men too!

 

Islam calls people to modesty and humility, in both dress and manner. Traditional clothing for Muslim men and women reflect these values, although colours and styles vary throughout the Muslim world.

 

These basic principles are that:

 

  • Both should fully cover their ?awrah?. Awrah is a term used within Islam which denotes the parts of the body that are not meant to be exposed in public. In general, standards of modesty call;

 

For a woman: to cover her body, particularly her chest. The Qur'an calls for women to "draw their coverings over their chests," and the Prophet Muhammad (pbuh) instructed believing women to cover their bodies except for their face and hands. Most Muslims interpret this to require the head to be covered as well, others will cover the entire body including the face and/or hands (niqab).

 

For a man: The minimum amount to be covered is between the navel and the knee.

 

  • Clothes should be loose enough so as not to describe what he/she is covering i.e. the person's figure.

 

  • They should be thick enough so as to not describe the colour of the skin or the parts required to be covered.

 

  • They should not be designed in a way to attract attention

 

  • They should not try and imitate others. Islam encourages Muslims to be proud of who they are. Women should dress in a feminine way and not like men and visa versa. This is why men are forbidden to wear silk and gold.

 

Despite what you may think Muslim dress requirements are not meant to be restrictive. Those who dress according to the above rules often continue with their activities in all levels and walks of life.

 

Dressing in this way as a woman gives one the confidence to play a full and active role in society, including the workplace, without the fear of harassment or unfair treatment. It prevents judgements being made based on ones attractiveness. It gives a clear signal that one wants to be treated as an intellectual person, an equal.

 

Unfortunately, the freedom to express oneself in an Islamic way is being threatened ? it is leading to hate crimes in the street and discrimination at places of work. This is especially significant for women who cover their hair, as the headscarf is an outward manifestation of their faith. We hope that with better understanding and mutual respect things will improve.




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