Modesty in the way you dress

Photo: Anik and Bappee

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Modesty in the way you dress

Photo: Anik and Bappee

Modest and fashion may be two words that are rarely associated, but changing global outlook has made its popularity a reality. This is by no means a new idea, as people and women who preferred to dress modestly have always been around, but the idea of ​​catering specifically to this growing population is just beginning. Some choose it to conform to religious practices, others out of simple personal preference; however, modest fashion is not just about the hijab or headscarf. It is for anyone who likes loose, flowing clothing, often in layers, such as capes, shawls, and baggy jackets, with the intention of not displaying their body shape prominently.

It can be said that modest fashion as we know it today has its roots in Islam. Scholars believe that the Quranic instruction on clothing is given in verses 30-31 of chapter 24. It tells believing men and women to lower their eyes and women to cover up so as not to reveal any of its beauty, except that which is naturally. apparent, and also not to behave in a way designed specifically to attract the opposite sex. Modesty in Islam is therefore not only about the cloth on the head; it also requires a modest and gentle demeanor.

The concept of modest fashion seems to fit well with Islamic rules of dress, which require men and women to wear clothes that do not reveal the shape of the wearer, are not transparent or overly attractive in an attempt to attract sex. opposite. The rules differ for men and women, however, in their implications – men must cover from the navel to below the knee, and women must cover everything except the hands, feet and face, and some women choose to cover these as well, according to the schools of thought within Islam that they follow.

Photo: Anik and Bappee

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Modesty in the way you dress

Photo: Anik and Bappee

Growing popularity

It seems that modest fashion has become more visible, with Muslims becoming more visible in the West, as they try to blend in but also adhere to Islamic rules.

“Young women are increasingly learning about the scriptures and exploring the beauty of themselves in modest clothing. While much of the community chooses it for religious reasons, others choose it for the grace, class and its sole purpose; which seems simple and modest,” says Hanium Maria Chowdhury, CEO and Founder of Tahoor Life Style.

According to Chowdhury, the beauty of modest outfits is undeniably breathtaking. Those who adore modest fashion, don’t necessarily wear a scarf, however, could use it as a stole or drape, adding more elegance. Flowing outerwear can only add more fresh feminism. And all that is beautiful, feminine and graceful is recognized effortlessly.

“How can people not respond positively to something so elegant and beautiful?” says Hanium Maria Chowdhury.

“Outside of religion, I find that we as human beings are more than our bodies, and in these times of rampant hyper-sexualization of the female form in all manner of communication mediums, modest fashion is an interesting way to pull off that focus,” says SOAS 2022-23 graduate student Sania Aiman ​​of her reasons for opting for modest clothing.

She adds, “I intentionally refrain from minimizing myself in public with my choice of clothing, and refuse to become invisible or a shapeless part of the background. I like bright colors and interesting combinations, cuts and styles. .”

Photo: Anik and Bappee

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Modesty in the way you dress

Photo: Anik and Bappee

An apparent controversy

Shahana Huda, Senior Coordinator, Media and Communications of the non-governmental organization (NGO) Manusher Jonno Foundation, which promotes human rights and good governance, observes: “Many people in Bangladesh now think that the hijab or the headscarf is a mark of Islam, and girls who do not wear it are indecent and remain vulnerable to sexual harassment. Or the hijab protects a girl from such harassment. But there are women and girls, while covering their heads, continue to hug, see through dresses. There is a big difference between these wearers of the hijab and those who wear it for religious decisions on the veil.

Until the 1990s, Bangladeshi women only put the anchal or the free end of the sari on their heads, and some families had women wearing burkas, but no hijab.

After our expatriate workers saw women in the Gulf regions and Malaysia wearing abayas and hijabs, they brought them for their female relatives back home. This is how the hijab gained acceptance in the middle class, as well as in the villages and towns of Bangladesh. After that, some women took the hijab under the following religious edicts. They have also adapted their lifestyles and outlook to the same concept.

But the wave of hijab acceptance in Bangladesh started in the 2000s, when women from all social classes, influenced by fashion trends in Turkey, Malaysia, Egypt, Indonesia, etc. started wearing the head covering with the slogan – “hijab is my choice”. “

“Girls are vulnerable in any situation; it has nothing to do with fashion, it’s a matter of bad luck whose attention you draw,” Huda said, adding that following modest fashion or wearing modest clothes cannot protect women from violence. Some men are so corrupt that even if a woman were fully covered, they would still lust after her.

Hanium Maria Chowdhury says: “I don’t know if modest fashion is gaining popularity because of peer pressure, or as protection against harassment and violence, or against really believing in religious feelings, but I believe that all of the above and more is true; Each Each individual has their own view of choosing modest clothing. Among many others, a growing reason is that modest fashion is simply fashionable, desirable because of its elegance and grace.

“I think the way a person chooses to dress is just one way of self-expression. The influence of Islam is important in my decisions, and there is a process of making conscious decision where I think about my actions in light of religion, as I understand it. Dressing the way I do, conservative and always with my head covered, is the result of that,” Aiman ​​says.

Photo: Anik and Bappee

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Modesty in the way you dress

Photo: Anik and Bappee

“I have unknowingly but surely developed a very personal style, influenced by my religious feelings and personal philosophy. Everything I choose to wear falls within the guidelines of hijab as far as I am able to. It is also comfortable and durable, because I believe in making sustainable choices,” says Aiman.

Modest fashion is a growing trend around the world as Islam grows, Muslims return to their religion, and many non-religion-driven women revert to their choice of being modest.

Modest wear is always associated with religion. But really, it’s probably just a state of philosophy more than religion.

Cabinet: Tahoor Life Style
Styling: Hanium Maria Chowdhury
Models: Fahiya, Anika Tahsin, Hafsa, Hamda, Nashita, Mawa, Tazkiya, Tasnia, Tabassum
Moderator: Shuchona

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