One of the most concerns of traveling to Iran for many visitors is the Iran dress code. Since the Islamic Revolution in 1979 all women in Iran, including foreigners, have been required by law to wear loose-fitting clothes to disguise their figures.
Iranian law requires that all women wear Islamic hijab upon reaching puberty, but it doesn’t specify the form. Women visitors have to observe the hijab law and Iran female dress code, which at the time of writing applies not only to Iranian nationals but to all women. However, if you find others around you being more relaxed about hijab, you can do the same. Technically, all hair should be covered, but you will soon notice that this isn’t the case in practice. There is no problem with some parts of your hair being out of scarf but there should be a scarf on some part of the head.
About clothes coloring there are some wrong beliefs that they must be dark, but there are absolutely no rules about the color of your clothing so wear as bright as you can and enjoy your time. I find that any shades of blue and green, from pastels to deeper hues, and browns and creams are generally acceptable. Turquoise is a favorite of mine, and matches the lovely multi-color tiles in the Isfahan mosques.
What should female tourists wear in Iran?
The first step for western visitors is a headscarf! Headscarves are available in different colors and tend to be a part of Iranian women’s outfit. It’s okay if your hair is sticking out of your scarf because most young girls only cover the top of their heads, but don’t mistake them for bandannas, headscarves must cover your neck as well as your head.
It’s a different story when visiting shrines and mosques. To enter some mosques, you’ll have to cover all your hair using a chador. Chador is a large piece of cloth mostly used by Muslim women, that is wrapped around the head and body leaving only the face exposed.
Don’t worry about bringing a chador though, they are loaned in most religious places.
- Colors It’s false belief that ladies confront constraint in the color of their clothing. This is absolute nonsense. There’s definitely no restriction in color with regards to the clothing standard. In case you are into colors, bring them along. They are most likely the best idea during summer.
- Manteau are a type of tunic that usually reaches down to mid-thigh. Most women in Iran, prefer to wear a manteau which can be long, short, tight, or loose, and in different colors.
- Tunics and Cardigans
Tunics are an incredible choice for summer trips to Iran. If they cover up your bum you are good to go. In case you do not have a tunic, you can choose a long tank top that is layered up with a light cardigan. You may even have a dress that can be paired with skinny jeans.
- Scarf & Hair Covering Hair should be covered. It does not mean you shall have a tight scarf around your head. Don’t worry, it is very usual that some parts remain out of the cover. It’s quite acceptable for women to allow whips of their hair to frame their face. Appropriate hats & caps can do this function as well as scarves. Scarf is the most common covering for head and is called “Roosari” in Farsi. There is a lot of variety of color and many Iranian designs are used in them which can be interesting to you.
- High boots, skinny jeans, cropped and Capri Pants You are likely cautioned that your dress has to be loose fitting so that it does not uncover your body shape. But in real, you find numerous shops in Iran selling various types of skinny jeans and tights. You can combine high boots, during winter, with skinny jeans. With respect to cropped pants, they are just fine as long as they are right above your ankle. But wearing Capri pants must be avoided as they are too short.
- Sandals & painted nails Open toes and sandals are just fine for both men and women, especially in summer. Painted nails on your fingers or your toes, is also OK.
- Body Should be covered with loose clothes like man shirt, coat or Manteau. Arms should not be bare. Coats which are called Manteau and resemble tonic along with pants or long skirts or skirts with socks are used for public places which have no limitations in color and you can wear colorful and bright colors.
According to the dress code in Iran for tourists, you are supposed to hide your body shape, so you should wear trousers – either jeans, or if visiting in summer, something loose and cotton is best. Your top should be fairly baggy and fall to about mid-thigh. A summer dress over jeans and t shirt is a good option. Bare forearms are fine but you should definitely cover your shoulders.
Wearing the Chador in Iran
Wearing a chador is not compulsory in Iran. The only places that you must wear chador are some of the mosques and holy shrines.
To enter these places, such as Imam Reza Shrine in Mashhad, Hazrate Masoumeh Holy Shrine in Qom, Shah Abdolazim in Shiraz, and Imamzadeh Saleh in Tehran, you must wear “Chador”.
The chador is a large piece of fabric that covers your entire body from head to toe. Don’t worry about where to find a chador, you can always borrow one at the entrance gate.
Burqa (veil) is not very popular in Iran and you cannot find many people wearing it. The only area that women still wear Burqa as their public outfit is the southern part of the country.
These rules are not observed very strict. You must not worry about maintaining your hijab, since in times you have forgotten about it, the maximum penalty will be a request (usually in a kind way) to make it correct. Obeying Islamic rules including Hijab or Islamic dress code is necessary in Iran. However, these rules are not observed very strict, especially for tourists and foreigners. There are some minimum requirements for foreign women dress-code in public places.
Women’s Indoor Clothing
The rules about what you wear are just for outside the houses and for private indoor places there are no rule. Feel free to choose your dress code when invited to an Iranian house. Iranian women dress as they desire in the houses but some religious women follow the Islamic rules about their clothing even in private places.
If you’re a person that doesn’t wear makeup when traveling, you might do an exception for Iran. Iranian women are finding it weird. Make-up is an important part of their style, primarily in big cities. A lot of women do their eyebrows like in the US as they learn from watching YouTube tutorials. Heavy eyeliner is also very common.
Dress Code for Men
Men always have it easier! there are fewer rules for men, but you should avoid shorts – wear jeans or trousers. T shirts are fine, but you should avoid sleeveless vests and stick to t shirts or shirts. Iranian men dress sharp and take good care of their appearances, you’ll fit right in.
Formal Dress Code in Iran
As in the West, a suit is the generally acceptable dress code in Iran for men on business and formal occasions and “Manteau” and a scarf for business women. The main obvious difference is the almost general absence of a tie, at least in government organizations and government-affiliated companies. This doesn’t mean that you can’t a wear a tie, because Iranians are aware of the different dress styles and may even expect you to follow your own—foreign leaders and diplomats always do. Iranian private businessmen are more likely to wear a tie.
Iran is a big country containing various ethnic groups. As you move across the country, you’ll get to know diverse cultures and dress codes. In religious regions like Qom, Mashad, Hamedan, Kerman, Kashan and Yazd people dress more conservatively. But northern regions like Gilan and Mazandaran are the opposite.
In contrast to the common misconception that people regard the conditions of travel to Iran very difficult due to difference in kind of covering, this difference and variety can be at the same time very interesting and you can also experience it. In Iran, so do not worry about strictness in your covering and just enjoy experiencing a different kind of clothing. these rules are not observed very strict. You must not worry about maintaining your hijab, since in times you have forgotten about it, the maximum penalty will be a request (usually in a kind way) to make it correct.
These rules are not observed very strict
Especially for tourists and foreigners
Many of our clients are shocked by the way women dress in Iran once they arrive, they see a large number of Iranian women who are stylish and take great care of how they look. Iran dress code is just about some tips & simple rules.