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‘I Feel Confident and Comfortable’ in Modest Fashion

For many,  dressing modestly is no longer restricted to Muslim women.  Rather, it is growing more popular with people of all beliefs who are affected by changing attitudes on social media.

“Modest fashion is becoming more inclusive,” Asha Mohamud, 21, a Muslim modest blogger and model with over 27,000 followers on Instagram, told BBC.

“I feel like women are now dressing not to be sexy for men – but to feel sexy for themselves.”

“Maybe that’s no longer a push-up bra – instead it’s a two-piece suit”.

Fashion blogger Jodie Marriott-Baker says social media and changing attitudes are why people are enjoying covering up in the name of fashion.

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“It’s no longer seen as ‎a trend that older people wear,” she tells Newsbeat.

“Fashion influencers on Instagram have made it look more wearable and accessible for ‎everyone.”

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Changing Markets

It’s not just bloggers that have noticed the trend change.

According to John Lewis’ recent retail report, shoppers are now favoring “longer lengths and looser fitting styles” over “restrictive, tight-fitting clothing”.

Asha, who is Muslim, believes “modest fashion is different for every person”.

“I’ve worn short skirts that people wouldn’t consider modest, but I’ve worn it in a different way, by putting loose fit trousers underneath.”

“Modest fashion is so much more than being Muslim. It’s no longer attached to a religion. It’s a new trend.”

‘I Feel Confident and Comfortable’ in Modest Fashion - About Islam

The dress even has its own Instagram account

Jodie says that part of the appeal of modest fashion is that it can be re-worn throughout the seasons.

“I can wear a midi dress in the summer when it’s hot and I want something cool and floaty. And then I’ll wear it again in autumn and winter, but layer it with a jumper and tights”.

‎”I feel confident and most importantly comfortable. I know no matter how much I ‎eat you’ll never be able to see my food baby.”‎‎

Shammie Hammouda, who runs Umma Models, thinks 2020 will be the year modest fashion really breaks through to the mainstream.

“You see people that practice modesty every single day but you don’t see that represented in the media. I’m hoping it becomes the norm,” she said.

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Growing Industry

According to Islamic Fashion Design Council (IFDC), Muslims spent about $322 billion on fashion in 2018. The hijab fashion industry is set to reach $488 billion this year, WHYY reported.

Non-Muslim international fashion lines and retailers have been trying to tap into the niche market for modest clothing.

For example, high-end label Dolce & Gabbana has lately released a collection of headscarves and coordinated abayas, the loose robes worn by some Muslim women.

Islam emphasizes the concept of decency and modesty. In many authentic Prophetic hadiths, it has been quoted that “modesty is part of faith”.

And the Islamic dress code is part of that overall teaching. The majority of Islamic scholars agree that modesty is mandatory for both Muslim men and women.