When we decided to go Iran, I knew that I had to wear a Hijab. it’s a must in Iran. As a good and well traveled woman (I wish…) I have to obey and respect the laws of the country. But what else? G Adventure, the tour group that I belonged to for this trip did mention that all travelers must adhere the local dress code at all times, both men and women… well, don’t we all when we travel to a foreign country? Women must wear hijab all the times except in their hotel room (off course!…). Literally this what their guide lines say: “A hejab consists of the manteau, a loose fitting trench coat that comes down to just above your knees plus a headscarf. A headscarf can be of any color but you’ll be better received if you’re wearing a darker color.“
So what is Manteau? actually it resembles to a laboratory coat and comes in different fabrics and colours or a woman’s cloak, gown or mantle. From the above explanation, it means that you need to wear a coat on top of your daily clothing…. really? at 24-28ºC? and when we have to walk about mid day… really? How does it work? is it like this picture?
Or looking awkward like this:
The good news is, cover up totally in black or even using a veil is not compulsory. Iranian woman used to be very westernized and very fashionable during the last Shah Reza Pahlevi; the last King of Iran. Now, as they have to comply with the new rules of the Islamic Republic of Iran, they interpret it very widely, not like in Saudi, where women have to wear a black abaya. Yes, in Iran they require their guests (tourists) to obey this regulation, but you don’t need to wear a niqab, just like this:
As a matter of fact, this is how the girls in Iran try to look fashionable with their “manteau” or their shirt and “headscarf”. Having said that, it doesn’t need to be a dark colour, it could be as colourfull as possible.
What about the manteau? well basically, you can just wear your oversized shirt lose, to cover your bum, just like me and my fellow travelers:
So what does a hijab do? Well basically, you have to cover your head, ears and neck. What you have to do is just wear your scarf that you’ve bought in any high street store over you head, and let it hang loose over and around your neck and shoulders. Now, how far should you wear your scarf over your head?
This is what is commonly seen on the streets all over the country:
More information of the terms of Muslim head gear: