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Different Names for Veils


When you think of a veil your first thought might be of a long white tulle wedding veil. This type of bridal veil is perhaps the most common in Western countries, but across the world and different cultures there are lots of different names for veils that would conjure up a different image in the mind. 

Here we take a closer look at different veils from around the world and what they mean for the wearer.  

What is a veil?

A veil is a piece of fabric designed to cover the head or face. Veils are most frequently worn by women, although throughout history and in some cultures it's not uncommon for men to wear them too. The veil is often considered to signify religious faith and can be worn daily or reserved for special religious ceremonies to symbolise humility, purity, and a commitment to religious beliefs.  

Different names for veils

With the veil being present over centuries and across continents, we take a look at some of the most common variations of a veil and explain what makes each one special. 


A mantilla is a traditional Spanish veil made from lace. This type of veil is often worn for religious ceremonies and weddings, and is often paired with a high hair comb so the veil drapes over the head and shoulders.

Different names for veils

Take a look at our real brides wearingmantilla veils  


Worn by Muslim women, Al-amira is a type of hijab veil consisting of two-pieces. This type of veil features a close fitting cap, usually made from cotton or polyester, worn with a tube-like scarf. 


The burka is a one-piece veil that covers the face and body, worn by female followers of Islam. It conceals the body from head to toe, with just a mesh screen for the wearer to see through.


Traditionally worn by women in Iran, the chador is a full-body veil. It is often accompanied by a smaller headscarf underneath.


A dupatta veil is common in Pakistan and India, covering the head and shoulders. The veil is made from a large piece of colored lightweight fabric to match the outfit worn by the wearer, and is often worn by members of the Hindu faith.


Long and cape-like, a khimar veil falls to the mid-section ending just above the waist. Another form of Muslim hijab, a khimar covers the hair, neck and shoulders completely, but leaves the face clear.


The niqab is a Muslim face veil that leaves the area around the eyes exposed, and is often worn with an accompanying headscarf. 


Worn mostly in the Gulf region, the shayla is a long, rectangular type of veil. It is worn wrapped around the head and tucked or pinned in place at the shoulders.


A yashmak is a type of traditional Turkish veil that covers the face partially or completely. 

As well as having different names for veils, veils can also come in different types and styles. Britten Weddings have a stunning selection of wedding veils and bridal accessories for you to choose from.