so you’re walking and suddenly you notice a niqabi… ‘that must be so and so!’ you think to yourself, and you rush up,salaam her and start asking how everything is.
Then reality dawns upon you; the person under the niqab is not the niqabi you thought she was. you sheepishly walk away, leaving the mysterious niqabi thinking ‘wow what a lovely person!’ (or ‘wow, what a weirdo’)
it’s ok, we’ve all been there and experienced it. It is now time to grapple with this issue, i will provide a few tips, will now train you, and equip you with valuable knowledge that will aide you in the identification of niqabis. After this post, you will be ready to face the challenges of ascertaining niqabis; nothing should deter you.
#1. EYES: round, elongated, blue, brown, asian, protuding etc etc are all eye types. You should know what kind of eyes your niqabi sister has. People tend to look into the eyes of a person when communicating… so logic dictates the eyes should be the first thing you recognise! This of course is an obvious tip to determine the true identity of a niqabi . if the eyes match, it could possibly be the person you think it is…
#2. WALK/GAIT: some people waddle, some shuffle and some elegantly grace the streets. Everyone has a signiture way of walking, and being a niqabi does not obstruct that. Thus if the steps she takes are familiar you could be onto the correct niqabi…(oh, and don’t forget to notice height/weight and size)
#3.DRESS-SENSE: Hey.. don’t LOL at this :p. Contrary to popular opinion not all niqabis look the same. Yes, some do.. but not ALL. Many niqabis still express touches of individuality so pin-point the dress sense of a niqabi. Your sporty friend who dons converses and hoodies is probably not the niqabi who is walking past right now with her handbag, diamonte embellished hijab and her ballet pumps. The way a niqabi dresses is probably the most distinct and easiest way of telling veiled sisters apart.
#4.HALLMARK ITEM: this is quite simply something that is always carried with them, or unique to them, whether that be a bunch of activist badges on their jacket, a bright purple bag/purse or palestinian keffiyeh. be on the look out for these telling items, if you want to succeed in identifying.
#5. VOICE: Easy! Say salaam, its not weird in islam to greet strangers, in fact its encouraged, shaking hands and hugging is just bonus. If you’re not entirely sure it’s a niqabi you know, just greet them anyway, if it is them then the rest will follow and if not.. well, win win situation. The sahaba used to go into the market places just to say salaam to as many people as they could, so in general, lets not forget the reward of a simple ‘asalamu3laikum!’ :)
*****BROTHERS: Warning!: never approach a niqabi unless you are 100 percent sure she is a relative. As these tips usually require surveying a niqabi to establish her identity, i do not condone that brothers follows these tips. But do: lower your gaze :)
Well done! you have reached the end of your short course on ‘niqabi identification’. you can now proceed to real life, where insha allah you will be able to spot your niqabi sister from a mile away :)