Burqa |the difference between a hijab, niqab and burka.



A burqa or burka, also known in Central Asia as a chador in Afghanistan. It is an enveloping outer covering that covers the body and the face worn by women in some Islamic customs. BOSHIYA is called the Arab variant of the burqa, which is typically black in color. 

Often the word burqa is conjugated with niqāb. In more practical use, Niqab is a face-veil that leaves the eyes exposed, while a burqa covers the whole body from the top of the head to the bottom. With only a mesh shield that allows the wearer to see through it. Also, the burqa should not be confused with the hijab, a fabric that covers the head, neck, and entire or part of the chest but not the face. Since pre-Islamic times the burqa and other forms of face veils have been attested, especially among Pashtun and Arab women. Many Islamic scholars, past or current, have not seen face veiling as a religious necessity.

History of the veil

During the Arab conquests of those empires, the practice of veiling was borrowed from the rulers of the Byzantine and Persian empires. Where it was a sign of respectability and high social status. Reza Aslan argues that “The veil was neither obligatory nor generally embraced until centuries after the death of Muhammad when a large body of male scriptural and legal scholars started to use their religion. 

Since Islam aligned with the conquered empires’ monotheistic faiths, the practice was embraced as a proper expression of Qur’anic values concerning modesty and piety. Veiling slowly spread to Arab women of the upper class and it finally became popular among Muslim women in cities throughout the Middle East. The veiling of Arab Muslim women was particularly prevalent under the Ottoman rule as a symbol of rank and exclusive lifestyle, and 17th-century Istanbul witnessed distinct styles of dress that represented geographical and occupational identities. Women in rural areas were much slower in embracing veiling because the garments were interfering with their fieldwork.

Islamic sources

While the Quran orders both men and women to act modestly and does not contain any precise instruction as to how women should dress, some Quranic verses have been used in exegetical face-veiling discussions i.e niqab. Coming after a verse that instructs men to lower their gaze and watch over their modesty, verse 24:31 instructs women to do the same, providing more description.

Say to the believing women that they lower their heads, keep their private parts (Furuj) and do not show their beauty except what is visible from the outside, and cover their bosoms with their veils (KHumur, sing. khimar) and do not reveal their finery except to their husbands or fathers.

Another chapter, known as the “mantle verse” (33:59), has been interpreted as establishing the protection of women as a justification for veiling 

O Prophet, tell your wives and daughters, and the women of the faithful, to draw their wraps (Jalabib, sing. jilbab) over them. Therefore they will be remembered and no harm will come upon them. God is loving, and forgiving.

Difference between Hijab, Niqab, and Burka

Many women wear headscarves to cover their heads and hair while others wear a burka or niqab which also covers their faces.

Headscarves are seen by people who wear them as a sign of modesty and a symbol of religious faith. 

  • The word hijab usually defines the act of cover-up but is also used to identify the headscarves worn by Muslim women. Those scarves come in many colors and designs. The most widely worn style in the West covers the neck and head but leaves the face open.
  • The niqab is a face cover that makes visible the area around the head. It can be worn with a separate eye cover. It is worn with an accompanying headscarf.
  • Of all Islamic veils, the burqa is the most concealing. It is a one-piece veil that covers the face and body and sometimes leaves only a mesh curtain to see through.
  • The Shayla is a common long, rectangular scarf in the Gulf region. It is wrapped around the head and tucked on the shoulders, or held in place.
  • The chador, carried out from outside the house by many Iranian women, is a full-body cloak. Sometimes, it is followed by a smaller headscarf below.

How To Wear A Hijab In A Simple Style

  • Wrap a long rectangular scarf over your head keeping one side longer than the other.
  • Pinning both sides of the scarf together under your chin is an easy way to go.
  • Make sure you wear your scarf in a way that the longer end of your scarf is flipped
  • Flip the same end back to the front of the other shoulder.
  • finally, spread both the ends of your scarf on your chest in order to cover it.

Some ideas to look great in your hijab style

  1. To get a glamorous look: always match your hijab with your outfit.
  1. Painless Hijab: These guys still find a way to get lost no matter how many pins you buy. And even though you have sticks, sometimes you just don’t have enough time to ease them in gently and slowly. So being stuck in the head doesn’t seem like a good option either. So all you have to do for those occasions is take a long rectangular scarf and simply wrap it around your head. With the longer end on your chosen shoulder.
  2. A plain, side-pinned: is the most functional hijab look of all time and has a timeless beauty to it. The great thing about it is that it doesn’t look as complex as it is. Just tie your hijab twice around your head and loop a lone pin on the side of your head. However, be careful not to stab yourself, because trust me, this seems to happen way more than one can handle.


Clearly the burqa or niqab is not patriarchal, or anti-social. This does not pose risks or build obstacles between the wearer and society. Rather, it is women’s personal option to achieve closeness to God and should be valued as such. Being tolerant does not only mean accepting people who look and act exactly like you; but accepting the choices of other people, especially, if you do not understand or agree with them. 

One thought on “Burqa |the difference between a hijab, niqab and burka.

  1. Pingback: Hijab | un large choix pour la femme musulmane, voile islamique -

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