Islamic Hijab

Q 1: What is the description of the prescribed Islamic Hijab (veil)? Is Niqab (face veil) the Hijab or do both differ in terms of ruling and appearance? Is Khimar (veil covering to the waist), which a woman wears uncovering her face and hands, the prescribed Islamic Hijab?

A: A woman should appropriately cover her face in the presence of non-Mahrams (not a spouse or a permanently unmarriageable relative). Also, she should cover up with clothes that are loose and not tight, charming or eye-catching. This is the prescribed Islamic Hijab, which Allah commands in the Ever-Glorious Qur'an, and on the tongue of His Messenger (peace be upon him). Niqab is the prescribed Islamic Hijab for a woman who is not in Ihram (ritual state for Hajj or `Umrah) which displays only her eyes, based on the Hadith reported on the authority of Ibn `Umar which was authentically reported in the Sahih [Authentic Hadith Book] of Al-Bukhari, (may Allah be merciful to him).May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.