Is It OK to Take Off Hijab Occasionally?

17 June, 2016
Q Salam, I have recently started wearing hijab. I am facing lots of trouble in caring it especially in my family functions. People are advising me to take off my hijab on weddings and events like that. Even my husband wants me to look pretty and elegant. He supports me in wearing Dopata loosely but he does not like me in Hijab. Please advise me what should I do? is it right to take off my hijab on events like my sisters wedding?


Salam Dear Sister,

Thank you for your question and for contacting Ask About Islam.

We would like to congratulate you on taking the decision to wear the hijab though it is a bit late but better late than never. You have to be confident in yourself and be sure that you have made the best decision and that Allah will reward you greatly for that.

Hijab is not an Islamic invention; rather it is a commandment from Allah the Almighty in all previous scriptures.

In the Quran, we are told that what means:

{Tell the believing men to lower their gaze and be modest. That is purer for them. Lo! Allah is Aware of what they do. And tell the believing women to lower their gaze and be modest, and to display of their adornment only that which is apparent, and to draw their veils over their bosoms, and not to reveal their adornment save to their own husbands or fathers or husbands’ fathers, or their sons or their husbands’ sons, or their brothers or their brothers’ sons or sisters’ sons, or their women, or their slaves, or male attendants who lack vigor, or children who know naught of women’s nakedness. And let them not stamp their feet so as to reveal what they hide of their adornment. And turn unto Allah together, O believers, in order that ye may succeed.} (An-Nur 24:30-31)

In another verse, we read what gives the meaning of:

{O Prophet! Tell thy wives and thy daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks close round them [when they go abroad]. That will be better, that so they may be recognized and not annoyed. Allah is ever Forgiving, Merciful.} (Al-Ahzab 33:59)

Based on these Quranic verses, hijab is a direct command from Allah the Almighty to Muslim women. It is a must not a choice. When the Muslim girl reaches puberty, she has to wear the hijab.  It is reported that the Prophet (peace be upon him) once said to Asma’, daughter of his close friend Abu Bakr (may Allah be pleased with them):

“O Asma’! Once a girl reaches puberty, nothing of her body may be seen by men who are not immediate family members except this and these (he pointed to his face and hands while saying so).” (Abu Dawud)

Now, we come to your problem.

We would like to remind you that what you are going through after wearing the hijab is a test from Allah and you have to maintain patience as the early Muslim women did when they wore the hijab fIs It OK to Take Off Hijab Occasionally 01or the first time.

A Muslim is not allowed to obey any human being who asks him to disobey Allah.  Allah’s commands have to be performed completely.

We would like to ask you some questions. What do you feel when you wear the hijab? Do you feel that the hijab is oppression? Did anyone force you to wear it? Does it restrict your freedom? Does it restrict your mobility? Who do you please by wearing the hijab? Is it people or your God?

Be frank while answering these questions.

You have to be convinced that by wearing the hijab, first you are doing an act of worship to Allah the Almighty. Hijab is not about a small piece of clothes that you wear to cover your body. It is not all about appearance. It is obligated for reasons far beyond covering the body. It is about modesty and protection.

However, you have to strike a balance between your religious duties and your marital duties. Is it possible to turn the dupatta suggested by your husband into a hijab? You can use it as long as it meets the requirements of the Islamic dress code which are as follows:

1- it should cover her whole body except face and hands;

2- it should be loose-fitting;

3- it should not be transparent or revealing; and

4- it should not be an attire specifically worn by men only. So long as your attire fulfills the above conditions, you don’t have to worry.

Still you can look pretty and beautiful while wearing the hijab. Search for new fashions and apply them to your hijab provided you meet the above conditions. Also remember that you do not have to wear the hijab in front of your husband. So, he should know that and he does not have to worry about looking pretty and bIs It OK to Take Off Hijab Occasionallyeautiful in from on him. He is the only one who can see your whole body.

As for taking off the hijab in certain occasions, you are the one to decide on this. For example, you mentioned your sister’s weddings. Is it a mixed gathering?

If yes, you are not allowed to take off the hijab. If there is special space for women only and no man is allowed in and you feel safe, you can take it off provided you are sure no will not reveal what you showed of your body (the hair, the hands and the face) to others.

Put your trust in Allah the Almighty and make supplications to help you overcome the difficulties you are going through and make sure that you are wearing the hijab to please Him not to please people.


About Dr. Mohsen Haredy
Dr. Mohsen Haredy holds a PhD in Hadith literature from Leiden University, the Netherlands. He is the former Executive Manager and Editor-in-Chief of E-Da`wah Committee in Kuwait, and a contributing writer and counselor of Reading Islam. He graduated from Al-Azhar University and earned his MA in Hadith literature from Leiden University.