The recent heatwave in the UK has taken the country by surprise, with hosepipe bans being enforced in the south and the weather up north reaching temperatures usually reserved for overseas holidays. For those that dress modestly, keeping cool and at a pleasant temperature can be difficult. Luckily, we've compiled a list of top tips to keep us comfortable over the summer.
Choose what's comfortable for you
Everyone is different when it comes to both their ability to remain comfortable in higher temperatures and preferences on what is and isn't respectful modest wear. For some ladies, a simple summer abaya is sufficient, but, for others, combining a hijab and kimono is a more efficient way of staying cool while still adhering to their own definition of Muslim dress.
Choosing an open abaya, for example, may be the perfect solution for one lady but not suitable for another. The versatile nature and designs of modest wear mean nobody should have to wear anything they're uncomfortable in, just to remain cool.
Take care when choosing fabrics
As many Muslimahs opt to have the head covered when not at home, we can get quite warm. Thankfully, abayas and hijabs are available in a range of colours, textures and materials that can be worn with other lightweight items to maintain a comfortable temperature.
Items made from wool, such as knitwear and cardigans, should be avoided where possible. As should denim items, such as jeans and jackets - as they'll cause you to overheat. Cotton or part-cotton items are much more breathable - allowing body heat to escape as fresh air can flow through the garments.
For an authentic fabric that's soft to the touch, opt for traditional nidha. One of the most elegant materials found in modest fashion, nidha is used to make luxurious abayas and is highly sought after. There are numerous types of nidha available and various prices to match the differing qualities, but, all in all, this is a perfect fabric to be worn during hot summer months.
Remember to stay hydrated
It seems like an obvious suggestion, but it's one of the most overlooked. Carrying a flask or bottle filled with ice-cold water in your bag is a refreshing, cost-effective way to stay hydrated and regulate your body temperature.
For best results, add a few ice cubes into the flask or, if you're using a bottle, fill it with water and place it in the freezer overnight. It'll be a little heavier, but will ensure you'll have a freezing cold drink of water throughout the day, which you can ration when needed.
Carry an elegant hand fan
Fancy making your outfit that little bit more glamorous? Hand fans add a touch of class to any outfit and are available in many beautiful colours and designs to match what you're wearing. Many are made from bamboo, which is a beautiful natural material. What's more, the decorative patterns adorned onto the surface of the fans will certainly make you stand out from the crowd.
Keep facial mist nearby
Drinking water is great, but did you know your skin needs hydrating, too? Make use of facial mist to effectively cool down at the touch of a button and instantly hydrate your skin. The refreshing burst is perfect for on the move skincare and is also ideal for moisturising the skin before applying makeup - or even to help set makeup into place. Plus, it can easily be stored in a pocket or handbag.
Additionally, it's recommended you take regular breaks in the shade when possible, wear sufficient factor sun cream on exposed skin and avoid vigorous exercise.
We hope, with this selection of tips, you'll be left feeling both cool and confident in your modest wear over the summer months.