Dressing modestly can become a chore when you simply can’t find clothes that meet your needs.
Muslim women around the world are all too familiar with the unwarranted added level of stress when trying to find clothes that meet our personal modesty requirements. Is this neckline too deep? Is there too much ankle exposed? Am I delusional because of how many layers I had to put on to make this outfit halal?
I’ll find the perfect dress after twenty minutes of scrolling (having pre-selected long sleeve and maxi options to refine the process) only to find it’s backless.
Although the modest fashion industry is valued at $277 billion in 2020/21, shopping as a Muslim woman, or someone with specific modesty needs, is still a process that requires dedication. patience.
The exhaustion I associate with finding clothes that meet my criteria and that I really like has seen me dress like a teenager in oversized hoodies and baggy pants for years now.
Of course, modesty is different from person to person, but in most cases, we just want to look and feel good, without having to pin the rogue slits of a long skirt.
Shop our favorite labels below
If you’re looking for the perfect party dress or dress for an occasion, head to Acacia, an Anglo-Egyptian woman-owned tailoring studio. Think puff sleeves and satin drapes, specially tailored to your body and, most importantly, your modesty needs. In addition to having seasonal lines, the designer and founder Sabren, also offers unique tailor-made creations.
The online retail fashion giant has a dedicated section on its site for dressing modestly. These are not the kind of articles you would consider boring or mundane. Patterned styles still offer plenty of opportunities to flex your fashion prowess with long dresses, jumpsuits, and top and pant sets in neutral palettes as well as statement-making prints.
Modest fashion doesn’t have to mean flowing abayas in nude tones. If, like me, you’re looking for the comfort and convenience of streetwear, head to Daily Paper for their unisex pieces that are inspired by African heritage and contemporary design.
When it comes to finding clothes for work and everyday, Na-kd offers a range of basic essentials and dressier pieces. The brand offers a wide selection of simple, neutral clothing that can be dressed up or down, striking the perfect balance between elegant, sophisticated and modest.
If you’re looking for timeless minimalist silhouettes, COS is for you. The big brand uses sustainable fabrics and sustainably sourced materials to create classic shapes that are both modest and practical. These are must-have pieces that will form the basis of your wardrobe for years to come.
All Muslim girls go for layering, and Uniqlo is the best place for lightweight, durable basics to make your favorite satin dress look modest without breaking a sweat. In 2015, the brand became a player in the Muslim/modest fashion market, producing an ongoing collection of modest clothing in collaboration with British-born designer Hana Tajima.
Zalando has recognized the demand for modest fashion and as such works with modest influencers, curating lookbooks to inspire consumers, because sometimes you just need that extra inspiration to show you how to make a piece work for you.
The online store is home to over 4,500 brands, from Nike to Malene Birger, ensuring you’ll find at least something to suit your needs, whatever the occasion.
The Nylah Collection creates the dreamiest abayas in billowing satins and gorgeous organzas. The range offers affordable luxury and all abayas come with a matching hijab!
For the more daring among us, Monki offers affordable, colorful clothing with oversized fits and modest hems. The brand is known and loved for its graphic prints and vibrant hues on floaty dresses, classic knits and cozy coats that bring style points.
Electric Bazaar is a social enterprise owned by Anglo-Muslim women that supports “the art of traditional craftsmanship in an industry dominated by unethical practices”. The brand designs modest garments incorporating traditional embroidery styles and handicrafts from different regions of Pakistan.
If the brand didn’t seem healthy enough, 10% of all proceeds are donated to The Sewing Machine Project, an initiative that empowers women in rural Pakistan to earn a living from home by starting their own self-employed sewing business.
The Hijab Workshop
L’Atelier Hijab is a luxury lifestyle brand that expresses a sentimentality for British heritage with a modern contemporary narrative founded for Muslim women by Muslim entrepreneur Fahmida Kamal Rob.
The brand produces high quality hijabs with attention to detail in its workmanship and beautiful packaging designed by Chita Erayanie, a Malaysian-born Muslim artist.
Neither Black Nor White
A brand belonging to the Indian diaspora, Nor Black Nor White is intended for the most eccentric dressers among us. The brand has collaborated with Fila, Adidas and recently the Victoria & Albert Museum. Flamboyant clothes are loose fitting and made from bright Bandhani (tie-dye) fabrics, because who says being modest means you can’t make a statement?
Vela Scarves is the Glossier of hijabs. The brand’s beautiful campaigns are shot with real Muslim women, with a promise of no retouching, careful attention to storytelling and inclusivity.
Founded by US-raised Syrian sisters Marwa Atik and Tasneem Atik Sabri, Vela has grown into a global brand that produces beautiful elevated wraps without compromising on comfort.
The label is committed to supporting charity with regular donations and uplifting Muslim women, sharing their stories through the Vela blog.
Lamisa Khan is co-founder of the creative collective Muslim brotherhood. She works as a community and culture manager at creative agency Digital Fairy. When not busy with work, Lamisa can be found comfortably cooking or taking her 10,000 steps.