Tuesday, 7 January 2014

Can you be Muslim and goth at the same time?

Alternative subcultures and often restrictive religions such as Islam may seem like strange partners, particularly where baseejis (morality police) can arrest you for the way you dress. This is a problem facing women in particular: a good woman is expected to be modest by covering up her arms and legs, and very often, her hair. In Iran, women have been banned from wearing leggings and sandals, the former for hugging the body too closely, the latter for showing too much skin. Not that all Muslim countries are so strict, but an undercurrent of conservativeness limits the extent to which these ladies can express themselves.

But fashionable Muslim women, in these strict countries, do exist and Muslim goths, though rare, may be found around the world. In fact, the documentary 'Sugar Coated' features a Muslim girl who has embraced fairy Lolita, with a modest but colourful style that enables her to cover her arms and legs as well as her hair (with pastel wigs!)

A fashion blog named The Tehran Times has been gathering street snaps of fashionable Iranian women who bend the rules as far as possible to look fashionable. Although none of them are goth or from any other subculture, their outfits are very inspirational. In the photo below, with a little tweaking, this lady could easily be a nu goth or corp goth.

Personally, I have seen Muslim ladies in my own neighbourhood who have caught onto the mainstream trend of 'SKULL EVERYTHING' and were wearing black, skull emblazoned scarves on their heads. Further afield, there are many Muslim goths on the internet, but they face considerable confusion and backlash, partially because of misunderstanding over their subculture, and partially due to the strict religiousness of their critics. Some say it is improper to wear makeup all over the face, to dye one's hair and wear nail polish.


Of course, this depends on the country, and the world has many Muslim goths, Lolitas and even punks. I could go on forever taking about these amazing people who have really captured the spark of rebellion that goes with many subcultures, but instead I'll leave you with a list of fascinating websites and links.


  1. Such a great post! I've wondered about goth muslims and others. I live in an arab neighborhood and I see some of the girls wearing skull prints or spiked bracelets or doc martins with their modest clothing. I used to work at an accessory store that sold that kind of stuff and their mothers would buy it for them

    1. I'm glad to hear the girls weren't restricted by their religion. it would be such a shame otherwise.

  2. Amazing post! Very nice! I had a goth muslim at my school, and she was just the nicest. And she really knew how to dress herself!

    x Dawn

    1. Thank you :) Yes, it does seem the more restrictions which exist, the more amazing and clever a person's expression of themselves becomes.


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