Islamic Wisdom: Islamic fashion

Raja Muhammad Mustansar Javaid
20 min readJun 27, 2022


Islamic fashion enhances human life because not only does it allow you to dress fashionably but also gives an opportunity to be independent in your thinking, helps to maintain positive self-esteem, and serves as a form of entertainment.

Hello, Dear Readers and followers, welcome back to my new story, I hope all’s well. Today’s topic is going to be about fashion and Islamic Perspective on modern it. Every person has different opinions on this topic and it is the most common topic in discussion among different groups of people about how this works and its impact on society.

Fashion is something that we deal with every day of our life. In general, fashion is a term for a popular style or practice, especially in clothing and many more.

Fashion is something that is always changing and one can find a lot of changes in fashion since its evolution in history. Fashion refers to a distinctive and often habitual trend in the style with which a person dresses, as well as to prevailing styles in behavior.

Fashion not only reflected some changes it also may have helped to shape them by conditioning people to think of themselves first and foremost as unique individuals. In a sense, fashion lets people not only express their individuality but also experience it on their bodies.

Fashion has taken to our society for ages. The concept of fashion is not new, it’s just that definition of the fashion has changed a lot these days and so is fashion. Fashion is like wind and is changing rapidly and there is a lot that has been added to fashion these days.

Fashion, as we identify it today, means to wear classy, stylish, and trendy clothes, or we can say wearing branded and expensive clothes. Fashion is not only restricted to clothes but before using or buying anything like shoes, cosmetics, purses, furniture, television, mobile, computer, etc.

Fashion is the primary framework through which human beings read and understand the concept of gender. Whereas the term fashion can be understood to mean clothing styles that change in swift succession.

According to Oxford Dictionary, the word ‘fashion’ means ‘manner or way of doing something. Actually, there is no such thing as “out of fashion” because fashion is only a means of one’s expression.

With the rise of social media has come the complete explosion of streetwear. Indeed, social platforms have provided a space for individuals to take self-expression to another level. Yet fashion has always been about personality. And as individuals make history, reflecting on their ever-changing identities also means reflecting on history. Clothes are like windows into particular points in time. Evidently, fashion reflects social changes.

Fashion Impact Society

Fashion has entered our lives and taken a very important spot in our lives. The social facets of life are influenced by fashion. Fashion plays a major role in social activism for centuries, From birth to death, fashion is the utmost.

Fashion is basically the new trends that come into society and makes the person look more rational. fashion is upgrading itself every now and then. According to studies, fashion causes changes in social, economic, and political landscapes. Thus fashion benefits and stimulates society, in the process promoting creativity.

Fashion does have an impact on society because it affects how people dress and the way they think.

It affects society as the new fashion is cloaking upon the old traditions of our religion. This makes us forget the old holy and good habits our elders had cultivated and makes us try hard to stick on to the new fashion trends so that we are accepted by society.

Fashion has a lot of ways in which it affects society but in a nutshell, it especially affects economically. When people try to keep up with the fashion trends, it encourages the flow of funds in society. Fashion is not stagnant, it’s something that constantly evolves thereby improving the social and cultural activities in the society.

Fashion has both positive and negative consequences on our society as is true for anything else. However, we often get to hear about the positive impact of modern fashion from different people and mainstream media, there are negative impacts to it too. Fashion also has negative impacts. For instance, it diverts peoples’ attention from other important activities and affects the self-esteem of people who cannot afford certain clothing.

Some people believe fashion is harmful since it creates a society in which appearance is often valued more than character. On the side, Some people believe fashion is an art, which stimulates and inspires people to express themselves. People often show off their personal identity, talent, and culture through their fashion choices.

In our society fashion is a display of what your material wealth is and also people “in the know” are aware of how to dress.

Fashion is more than an amped-up dress-up for adults. It’s a reflection of who we are and what we believe. Some of them are too focused on how they want to dress and change their whole closet for better styles. On the other side, Some teens start to feel uncomfortable with themselves. The world can treat each other differently and not the same.

Whereas this picture creates a different image of me in front of others. This is what fashion has done to us over the course of years. Could be good or could be bad.

First of all fashion trends are making people go wild. Literally, not everyone but some are getting the wrong ideas. Fashion is a whole other story when things start to be an issue. Because not everyone can afford the real thing and people want to look and feel good.

Fashion is changing constantly and all we can do is keep up with it and change ourselves accordingly.

Fashion consciousness is increasing day by day and everyone wants to look their best. There is practically no harm in looking good, until and unless you tend to become obsessed with the fashion.

All in all, almost every country has its own fashions that make a statement of a person’s wealth and the statement they are making using style or lack of style.

Islam is the complete code of life

Islam is a religion not in the meaning of the west which is termed the religion is something between believer and God. Islam is a religion that organizes all aspects of life on both individual and collective levels. Islam is a constituent part of life. It tells us how to manage all activities of life in a sound and ethical way.

Islam is mostly taken as old fashion and rigid mindset.

Islam established a clear system of worship, laws about living a life, civil rights, political rights, social issues, laws of marriage, divorce, inheritance, and all others that we deal with in our daily life. It is not only confined to worship but to daily life, a complete guide in all aspects. A guide to the social, economic, and political systems.

It is not in the mosque only. it is for daily life, a guide to life in all its aspects. As we know Islam is a guide to life in all its aspects so it keeps away a Muslim from confusion of any type because Islam is logical and rational.

This claim from us (Muslims) that Islam is the complete code of life is not merely a false or shallow claim, rather from reading the ayahs of the Quran and the knowledge traditions of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) give this claim strong and provable groundings in the bases of which a Muslim can follow Islam and its instructions without any doubt.

As I earlier talked about Islam conducts our ( As Muslims)’s life in all its aspects. That’s why it is not only a religion but also a way of life. Islam is the best way of life for all. It serves as the best solution to all sorts of problems no matter how perplexing they may be.

Islam is the absolute answer to those who seek an ideal religion and an entire way of life. It guides us to a well-balanced life, one that makes us happy in this world and in the life hereafter. It is the way to attain supreme success in the everlasting world to come. In, short Islam because the complete way for all, is Allah’s Mercy to the entire of mankind.

In a nutshell, there is no matter of life about which Islam has not spoken either in the form of verses of the Quran or in the form of traditions of Prophet Muhammad (PBUH). Therefore, whenever there is guidance required by a Muslim regarding any aspect of life, he or she must consult both these resources before going for any other book or worldly rule.

However, in order to do so, the followers have to live this life according to the instructions of Islam and follow the path of righteousness. Unlike other religions, the path of righteousness is not related to religious traditions and obligations only, rather righteousness is to be observed in every aspect of life and this is why Islam gives proper instructions to live life.

Fashion in Islam:

The manner of dress and fashion of Muslims has drawn great attention in recent years, Islam gives guidance about all aspects of life, including matters of public decency.

Although Islam has no fixed standard as to the style of dress or type of clothing that Muslims must wear, there are some minimum requirements that must be met. As you read my previous articles about different aspects of clothing in Islam.

Islamic Perspective on Modest Dress:

In Islam, both men and women are required to dress modestly. The basic principle presented in Qur’an about the dress is that of modesty yet, interestingly, the Qur’an is really not that explicit about the exact definition of modest dress. According to the Qur’anic verses, Muslims are advised to cover their body and put on their modest outer garments in a way that enables them to avoid harassment. In addition, Muslim women are advised not to draw attention to their “beauty” (zeenah).

Islam is a religion that lays down rules based on the dictates of the pure nature innate in all humans (fitrah), straightforward reasoning, and sound logic.

Allah stated:

“O children of Adam, We have bestowed upon you clothing to conceal what should be concealed, and as a fine adornment — and the garment of righteousness, that is best.” (Al-A’rāf 7:26)

Allah has mentioned here reasons for clothing: to cover the body and conceal what should not be revealed in public, and to beautify the body so the person looks better. Islamic clothing is known for its modesty. A Muslim is allowed wear whichever clothes he wishes so long as they are modest, free from impurities, not made from forbidden materials, and within textual guidelines. Textual guidelines mean that it must abide by the commandments of the Qur’an and Prophetic Tradition.

Both men and women are expected to show modesty in the clothes they wear. Women are expected to dress in a way that shows they are believing women.

The Qur’ān instructs the Prophet,

“Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to wrap their outer garments (the jilbāb) around themselves. That is more suitable so that they will be known as pious women, and not be harassed.” (Al-Ahzāb 33:59)

Women are also told not to display their finery. This means that the dress is meant to protect the wearer from harassment and to prevent one from becoming obsessed with pride in one’s outward appearance. It is also a way Muslims can develop a society that respects the boundaries between men and women.

In this way, each person is judged for their piety, honesty, hard work, and values, not mere outward beauty and fashion consciousness. Many Muslim women completely conceal themselves in a ‘jilbāb’ (outer garment covering them from their head to their feet), along with gloves, and a face veil (niqāb) that allows only the eyes to be seen. All of this is from Islam. However, not all of it is obligatory. The gloves and face veil are not obligations but recommendations, and most women choose not to wear them.

So the modest veil dress is the Islamic practice of preventing women from being seen by men except by their closest male relatives (referred to as mahrams).

Men are not allowed to shake hands with women unless they are closely related to them, such as one’s wife, daughter, paternal aunt, maternal aunt, sister, etc.

Some Muslims wrongly believe that the modest veil dress is a cultural practice rather than a religious one. They are very much mistaken because Allah has instructed the women,

“and they are to draw their veils (khumur) over their heads and chests (juyūb) and not to reveal their beauty except to their husbands, their fathers, their husband’s fathers, their sons, their husband’s sons, their brothers or their brother’s sons, or their sister’s sons…” (An-Nūr 24:31)

Allah instructed the men,

“To lower their gaze from looking at women with desire other than their wives, and to protect themselves from fornication. That is purer for them.” (An-Nūr 24:30)

Men are commanded to dress modestly in loose garments that do not reveal what is between their navel and knees. All lower garments such as trousers or long shirts (i.e. thawb) must be above the ankles just as the Prophet (PBUH) has commanded,

“What is below the ankles of a lower garment will be in the Fire.” (Reported by Al-Bukhārī, no. 793)

And he said,

“The lower garment of the believer should come to the mid-calf, but there is no sin on him if it comes between that point and the ankle. But whatever is lower than the ankle is in the Fire.”

And he said three times,

“Allah will not look at the one who lets his lower garment drag on the floor out of vanity.” (Reported by Ibn Mājah, no. 3704)

The Prophet (PBUH) said:

“When a woman reaches the age of adolescence, it is not correct that she displays any part of her body except this and this — and he pointed to his face and hands.” (Abu Dawood 4104)

This hadeeth is a clear proof that a woman is obligated to cover her whole body. The rules of modesty are legislated and ordained by Allah, not dictated by the whims of people.

Read more about Islamic Wisdom: According to the Qur’an & Sunnah the Islamic Perspective of Clothing Code here;

The exact rules defining modest dress have been determined based on interpretation of Quranic verses and incorporation of concepts established in hadith. The following requirements are followed by Muslims in their daily lives.

Islam describes the parts of the body which must be covered in public for both men and women and Islam also guides that clothing must be loose enough so as not to outline or distinguish the shape of the body. Skin-tight, body-hugging clothes are discouraged for both men and women. When in public, some women wear a light cloak over their personal clothing as a convenient way to hide the curves of the body. In many predominantly Muslim countries, men’s traditional dress is somewhat like a loose robe, covering the body from the neck to the ankles.

The Prophet Muhammad once warned that in later generations, there would be people “who are dressed yet naked.” See-through clothing is not modest, for either men or women. The clothing must be thick enough so that the color of the skin it covers is not visible, nor the shape of the body underneath.

The overall appearance of a person should be dignified and modest. Shiny, flashy clothing may technically meet the above requirements for exposure of the body, but it defeats the purpose of overall modesty and is therefore discouraged.

Islam encourages people to be proud of who they are. Muslims should look like Muslims and not like mere imitations of people of other faiths around them. Women should be proud of their femininity and not dress like men. And men should be proud of their masculinity and not try to imitate women in their dress. For this reason, Muslim men are forbidden from wearing gold or silk, as these are considered feminine accessories.

The Quran instructs that clothing is meant to cover our private areas and be an adornment (Quran 7:26). Clothing worn by Muslims should be clean and decent, neither excessively fancy nor ragged. One should not dress in a manner intended to gain the admiration or sympathy of others.

Islamic clothing is but one aspect of modesty. More importantly, one must be modest in behavior, manners, speech, and appearance in public. The dress is only one aspect of the total being and one that merely reflects what is present inside of a person’s heart.

Islamic dress sometimes draws criticism from non-Muslims; however, dress requirements are not meant to be restrictive for either men or women. Most Muslims who wear a modest dress do not find it impractical in any way, and they are able to easily continue with their activities in all levels and walks of life.

These concepts help you to understand what Islam says about fashion and what is a proper modest dress code for both men and women in Islam and also what Islamic law or Sharia law says about what is permissible and what is prohibited in Islam.

Most people are interested to know about it even on different social media apps like Twitter, Instagram, Medium, and Quora where different people ask different questions about Islam. Anyway, I try my best to help them and also clear those misconceptions that most people have and also those Muslims as well who have less knowledge or are misguided and come and follow the path of righteousness of Allah.

Islamic Perspective on Modern Fashion:

Islamic fashion as a phenomenon stemmed from the combination of a set of Islamic practices in which Both men and women need to cover a specific set of body parts is present and some other rules which I mentioned above.

Dress codes can reveal social aspirations, and the societal and political significance of dress codes and dress codes are a Rosetta Stone to decode social norms over time. For centuries, dress codes have been used to maintain specific social roles and hierarchies. But fashion and style have also traditionally served another purpose: to express new ideas of individual liberty, rationality, and equality.

Different people of modern times also use the clothing within their own culture to show modesty as well. So what we see is that modern fashion is different from the religious dress code, but the concept of using one’s fashion of the time to dress modestly remains the same.

A lot of people define their fashion statement as to their comfort and always wear whatever they are comfortable in.

This caught most people’s attention and they wanted to know the Islamic perspective on fashion and whether it is haram or halal to engage. As most people know, though, Islam generally gives us the liberty to do all that is sensible, necessary, and harmless but always draws our attention to certain limits and red lines as well.

There is no evidence that proved fashion is forbidden in İslam just those fashions are forbidden which is against Islamic sharia law about clothing.

In simple words, Islamic fashion encourages Muslims to be both covered and fashionable, modest and beautiful. Islam is not opposed to men and women looking neat, good-looking, fashionable, or even attractive. What Islam tries to avoid is looking SEXUALLY attractive in the same way that Islam asks men time after time to take care of their sight and never look at any woman other than one’s spouse- sexually.

Because Islam wants all sexual pleasure and satisfaction to be concentrated within wedlock and intended for its strength and persistence, rather than its disruption!

The most recent developments in the field have caused a varied public discourse on a series of different levels, from the political to the religious, to the cultural. Different positions are taken by different participants in the discussion of the politics and cultures of Islamic fashion.

The Islamic outfits for both genders are mentioned in Quran & Sunnah.

Without a doubt, Allah in His wisdom advises the believers to dress and behave in a way that elevates their status both in this life and the hereafter. Most Muslims do not view modest dress as an imposition meant to oppress either women or men. Indeed, many women who voluntarily wear modest veils dress like Hijab which is most common actually feel liberated; free from society’s rules about women’s looks, free from being slaves to fashion, free to reserve their beauty for their husbands, and so on.

Muslim wear is modern and has changed significantly over the years.
Many seem to have a very relaxed attitude to mix-and-match modern, western styles and more traditional Muslim styles. Muslim men and women try different colors and make themselves appear beautiful with a combination of their clothes accessorized right.

In particular young Muslim women’s fashion seems to have become significantly more stylish over the past decade, with many young Muslim women carrying off very modern looks but retaining their Islamic identity and keeping their modesty.

However, do we ever look at an Islamic point of view before following or adapting any type of fashion, especially the dress code?

First of all, there is a need to redefine the term ‘fashion’. Fashion is not restricted to any single area of life i.e. costume or appearance but it has a very wide range in almost every field of life.

Fashion in real meaning is not to wear trendy, expensive, and attractive clothes. Instead, Fashion is a style, it is a make. It is an appearance. So, whatsoever one is wearing must suit him or her.

In every individual, a unique expression of his or her style, personality, and character is being reflected. Therefore, fashion is an appearance and a sort of means to communicate. However, fashion is always unique and distinctive to one and all.

But according to religious teachings and a set of rules whatever is permissible or prohibited, all Muslims must follow these rules.

An important aspect of religion that must be observed is the Islamic code of clothing for both men and women. The appearance is a symbol of what one has in his or her heart.

Nowadays, everybody wants to be attractive and eye-catching, which has given rise to fashion. But sadly, today’s modern society is madly and blindly running behind modern western fashion.

In fact, we can see there has been introduced and injected vulgarity into our society in the name of fashion and style.

Perhaps today majority of women seem unclothed. Or we can see they are covered but at the same time uncovered, most women by adapting sexy outfits, try attempting to be veiled and appealing at the same time.

Some people believe “If exposure of body is modernism, then animals are more modern than humans.”

In simple words, Modern stylish modest dresses are tight-fitting and therefore reveal the neck and parts of the body, and hence fail to fulfill the essence of what it means to be veiled.

We are trying to find a balance between modern and modest

If we think positively, we all know that such stylish, colorful, and so-called trendy clothes, in fact, do not suit the Islamic code of dressing, but are a symbol to make oneself different from others.

Islam allows fashion but within certain limits and provisions.

The unique Islamic code of dress is one of many things that differentiates Muslims and Non-Muslims. Islam does not restrict anyone to wear good clothes or practicing fashion. What it restricts is not wearing such clothes that do not cover the body in a decent manner.

Those women who wear transparent or tight-fitting clothes should reflect on Prophet’s (PBUH) remark that such women are in fact uncovered, and they won’t even smell the fragrance of paradise. Even if transparent and netted scarves are worn, displaying hair deliberately is not allowed in Islam.

Allah mentioned in the Holy Quran:

“O Prophet! Say to your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers that they let down upon them their over garments; this will be more proper, that they may be known, and thus they will not be given trouble; and Allah is Forgiving and Merciful” (Surah Al Ahzaab; verse 59)

Hence our dress must cover our body properly and decently. The design of our dress must avoid three grave sins: showing off, arrogance, and self-indulgence. Also, clothing should not be worn for the purpose of gaining a reputation or increasing one’s status in society.

Ibn ‘Abbas said,

“Eat what you like and wear what you like as but avoid two things: extravagance and arrogance.” (Bukhari)

Islam inspires people to be proud of who they are. Muslims should look like Muslims, and not like mere imitations of people of other faiths around them.

Final Thoughts:

Islam is not Modern nor old fashion and Islam is not just a religion. It is in simple terms beautiful in every way possible with common sense, logic, basics, & complexity which means Islam has a complete code of life which covers all the aspects of human life.

The Quran and Sunnah is the general code for Muslims. Islam is not merely confined to the spiritual tenets and doctrines or rituals and ceremonies. It is a complete code regulating the whole Muslim society, every department of life, collective and individual.

It’s so much more. People have a right over you & you have a right over them, it’s about conduct, your character & manners. May we all experience an Islam that penetrates our hearts & makes us better humans & beneficial to mankind.

In the video, Shaikh said “Clothes are a blessing and a favor from Allah with them we cover what needs to be covered and it protects us from cold or hot weather. So, it is a blessing of Allah and Islam does not reject people wearing beautiful clothes. It is a misconception. The Prophet (PBUH) addressed the companions once and said, by Allah, he who has an atom weight or an ant weight of arrogance in his heart would not be admitted to Jannah, would not be admitted to Paradise.

And one of the companions (PBUH) stood and said O Prophet of Allah (peace be upon Him), I like to have a beautiful thob, beautiful dress and I love my shoes to be beautiful as well, so is this part of arrogance?

And the Prophet (PBUH) said, no, Allah is beautiful and Allah loves beauty. So, Prophet (PBUH) approved of the fact that people wear beautiful clothes.

There is nothing wrong with that in Islam, yet internal beauty is far superior.

So, I believe people should wear whatever they’re comfortable in according to their religious beliefs and cultural values.

some people dress modestly; they don’t care to show their cleavage or other more private areas for public display in western countries. Even Christianity also says they dress modestly and don’t show private parts according to the new testimonial bible.

After conversations with some people from different parts of Western countries, I learned that their personal philosophy is to wear modest dresses and not show their parts to others.

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Finally, I pray to Allah to benefit those who read this article and others, grant me truthfulness in what I say and do, preserve my thoughts and my pen from deviation and guide me in all my affairs.

And all praise and thanks are due to Allah, without Whose help and guidance nothing can be accomplished. May Allah bless you with happiness, success, guidance, health, and knowledge. May Almighty Allah give us the strength to follow the Sunnah of our beloved Prophet Muhammad (P.B.U.H) and make us part of the group who is among the most righteous! Ameen.

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Raja Muhammad Mustansar Javaid

"Versatile Wordsmith | IT Solutions Strategist | Motorcycle Voyager | Multilingual Enthusiast". I’m so deep even the ocean gets jealous