Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 18 February 2020

That's a wrap: Five easy hijab styles for any occasion

How to comfortably wrap your hijab in no more than four steps, for everything from playing sports to going to a wedding

When I first covered at 11 years old, the main struggle I faced was how to wrap my hijab. My mother, sisters and aunts all had distinct styles, depending on the shape of their faces, the material they preferred and the event they were attending.

At first, all that mattered to me was comfort, wearing easy slip-ons such as the Amira style. But as I grew older and became invested in fashion, my hijab played a more definitive role in my look. So I developed wraps for various occasions, incorporating colours and introducing accessories.

Comfort is still a priority – my hijabs are mostly in jersey or chiffon fabric. The two materials are light, breathable, easy to wrap and stay in place. Jersey doesn’t slip and so can usually be worn without pins. Chiffon won’t slip if pins are used, but rarely requires more than two.

I buy the cotton under scarves and jersey hijabs from Ruckn Al Huda, which has stores in Khalidiyah Mall and Madinat Zayed. In Dubai, they are available from Bedoon Essm and Amani. The chiffon hijabs are from online store Culture Hijab. To secure them in place, I use pearl-headed pins, which can be bought at Daiso, Carrefour or Lulu Hypermarket. As for how to wear them, here’s a guide to five easy hijab styles that are suitable for various occasions, including an everyday look and one for a night out. Much depends on your personal preference, so play around with them until you’re comfortable.

Style 1: over-the-shoulder throw

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a shoulder throw hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a shoulder throw hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:

Material: Jersey

Pins: None

This wrap is my go-to for a casual everyday look, whether I’m studying – it’s perfect for anyone who wears glasses – rushing between errands or shopping. The style is simple, comfortable and doesn’t require any pins to put together. I usually pair it with silver hoop earrings to add character.

  • Frame the hijab around your face as you like. I tend to put it at a slight distance back from my forehead, but some people prefer to have it more forward. Make sure both ends of the material are equal in length.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a shoulder throw hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a shoulder throw hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
  • Throw one end of the hijab over one shoulder, then throw the other end over the other shoulder. Pull the sides forward as much as you like to adjust the volume and tightness of the headscarf.
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a shoulder throw hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a shoulder throw hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
  • You can also wrap each (or one) end of the hijab back around your neck and allow it to drape in front of your shoulders.

Style 2: hijab Amira

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a amira hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a amira hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:

Material: Jersey slip-on

Pins: None

Amira, which means princess, is a ready-made slip-on hijab worn mostly by newly covered girls when I was growing up. This is because no pins or wrapping are necessary. I now use it for playing sports because it’s light and breathable, and won’t shift when I move about.

  • Slip the hijab over your face and pull it back until you’re comfortable with its position.
  • This style can be worn without the under scarf, but I recommend wearing one to avoid loose strands poking through.

Style 3: classic hijab wrap

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a classic wrap hijab look. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a classic wrap hijab look. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:

Material: Chiffon

Pins: Two

This is my choice for a day out with friends. It’s perfect for colourful looks and provides full coverage around the neck and shoulders, which is particularly helpful in the summer if you wear lower-cut T-shirts. It isn’t possible to accessorise with earrings or a necklace, so instead focus on bracelets and rings.

  • Frame the hijab around your face, making sure to keep one end of the material about twice as long as the other.
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a classic wrap hijab look. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a classic wrap hijab look. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
  • Wrap the headscarf around your head and use a pin to hold it in place.

  • If you like, tuck the shorter end into your top and once it’s set add another pin to hold it down.

Style 4: basic turban

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a turban hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a turban hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:

Material: Jersey or chiffon

Pins: At least two

Turbans are rooted in history – from the colourful headwraps common in Africa to the voluminous pleated styles seen in Asia – and give off a modern, bold vibe ideal for this generation’s hijab wearers. Perfect for a night out, the basic turban is a simple wrap that has a distinct and creative look. I love to pair it with long earrings, a necklace and a bold lip.

  • Fold your hijab in half or quarter depending on its size and put it over your head. Cross both ends to the back, placing them at the nape of your neck.

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a turban hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a turban hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
  • Take one end of the headscarf and wrap it around your head until you can tuck the end under your bun. I use a pin to keep the material in place.
  • Repeat the process for the other side end of the hijab, creating a criss-cross look.
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a turban hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a turban hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
  • Add more pins where the material feels loose to hold it down – the chiffon may require more pins because it’s a slinkier fabric, while jersey doesn’t move as much.

Style 5: Turkish hijab wrap

ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a turkish hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a turkish hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:

Material: Chiffon

Pins: Two

For more formal events, I wear my hijab in what’s known as the Turkish style. It stands out for its elegant triangular shape, which frames your face in a slender way. ­Typically, silk is used for this wrap, but the material is more slippery, so I prefer chiffon.

  • Push your under scarf back from your forehead slightly so it won’t show under your hijab.

  • Fold the hijab by about a quarter.
  • Frame it around the face in a triangular shape, keeping one end longer than the other.
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a turkish hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
ABU DHABI, UNITED ARAB EMIRATES. 7 JANUARY 2020. Sarah Afaneh wears a turkish hijab. (Photo: Reem Mohammed/The National) Reporter: Section:
  • Wrap the longer end around your head and secure it in place with a pin on either side of your face to complete the look.

Updated: January 16, 2020 12:57 PM

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