Conditions of the Jilbab
1. It covers the whole body
Allah says: “O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils) all over their bodies [i.e. screen themselves completely except the eyes or one eye to see the way]. That will be better, that they should be known (as free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed. And Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful.” [Al-Ahzab, 33:59]
Al-Hafiz ibn Kathir said in his Tafsir:
This means that they should not display any part of their adornment to non-mahrams, apart from that which it is impossible to conceal. Ibn Mas’ud said: such as the cloak and robe, i.e., what the women of the Arabs used to wear, an outer garment which covered whatever the woman was wearing, except for whatever appeared from beneath the outer garment. There is no sin on a woman with regard to this because it is impossible to conceal it.
2. It is not an adornment.
Allah says: “… and not to show off their adornment…” [An-Nur, 24:31].
“And stay in your houses, and do not display yourselves like that of the times of ignorance” [Al-Ahzab, 33:33].
The Prophet alayhi salat wa salam said: “There are three, do not ask me about them: a man who leaves the jama’ah, disobeys his leader and dies disobedient; a female or male slave who runs away then dies; and a woman whose husband is absent and left her with everything she needs, and after he left she made a wanton display of herself. Do not ask about them.”
(Narrated by al-Hakim, 1/119; Ahmad, 6/19; from the hadith of Faddalah bint ‘Ubaid. Its isnad is sahih and it is in Al-Adab Al-Mufrad).
3. It is thick and not transparent
The Prophet alayhi salat wa salam said: “During the last days of my ummah there will be women who are clothed but naked, with something on their heads like the humps of camels. Curse them, for they are cursed.” Another hadith adds: “They will not enter Paradise or even smell its fragrance, although its fragrance can be detected from such and such a distance.”
[Narrated by Muslim from the report of Abu Hurairah].
4. It is loose and not tight
Usamah Ibn Zaid said: “The Messenger of Allah alayhi salat wa salam gave me a thick Egyptian garment that was one of the gifts given to him by Duhyat Al-Kalbi, and I gave it to my wife to wear. He said, ‘Why do I not see you wearing that Egyptian garment?’ I said, ‘I gave it to my wife to wear.’ He said, ‘Tell her to wear a gown underneath it, for I am afraid that it may describe the size of her bones.’”
[Narrated by Al-Diya’ Al-Maqdisi in Al-Ahadith Al-Mukhtaarah, 1/442, and by Ahmad and Al-Baihaqi, with a hasan isnad].
5. It is not fragranced or perfumed
The Prophet (may the peace andblessing of Allaah be upon him) said, “Any woman who perfumes herself and passes amongst the people so that they may smellher scent, has (resembled) a fornicator.”
(Reported by An-Nasaa’ee, Abu Dawood, and At-Tirmidhee).
Zainab Ath-Thaqafiyah stated that the Prophet (may the peace and blessing of Allaah beupon him) say, “If any of you women leave out to go to themosque, do not approach scented perfume.”
(Reported by Muslim).
A woman passed by Abu Hurairah smelling of perfume, so he saidto her, “O female slave of the Exalted! Are you going to theMosque?” She replied,“Yes.” He said,“And you perfumed your-self for it?” She replied, “Yes.” So he said,“Then return back andtake a bath, for indeed I heard Allaah’s Messenger (sallallaahu‘alayhi wa sallam) say, ‘Allaah will not accept the prayer of awoman who leaves for the Mosque smelling of perfume up untilshe returns to her home and takes a bath (to remove it’s smell).’”
(Reported by Al-Bayhaqee).
6. It does not resemble the clothing of men
Abu Hurairah said: “The Messenger of Allah alayhi salat wa salam cursed the man who wears women’s clothes, and the woman who wears men’s clothes.”
‘Abdallah Ibn ‘Amr said: I heard the Messenger of Allah alayhi salat wa salam say: ‘They are not part of us, the women who imitate men and the men who imitate women.’”
Ibn ‘Abbas said: “The Prophet alayhi salat wa salam cursed effeminate men and masculine women. He said, ‘Throw them out of your houses.’” He said: “The Prophet alayhi salat wa salam expelled so and so, and ‘Umar expelled so and so.” According to another version: “The Messenger of Allah alayhi salat wa salam cursed men who imitate women and women who imitate men.”
‘Abdallah Ibn ‘Amr said: “The Messenger of Allah alayhi salat wa salam said: ‘There are three who will not enter Paradise and Allah will not even look at them on the Day of Resurrection: one who disobeys his parents, a woman who imitates men, and the duyooth (cuckold, weak man who feels no jealousy over his womenfolk).”
Ibn Abi Malikah – whose name was ‘Abdallah Ibn ‘Ubaidallah – said: “It was said to ‘Aishah , ‘What if a woman wears (men’s) sandals?’ She said: ‘The Messenger of Allah alayhi salat wa salam cursed women who act like men.’”
7. It does not resemble the clothing of disbelieving women
“Differ fromthe people of the Scripture…”, “Differ from the Jews…”, “Differfrom the unbelievers…”,“Whoever imitates a people is fromthem.”(Reported by At-Tirmidhee, Ibn Hibbaan, Abu Dawood andothers
8. It is not worn for fame (to show off and to impress people)
The Prophet (sal-lallaahu ‘alayhi wa sallam) said, “Whoever wears clothing seeking tostand out and seeking fame in this world, Allaah will dress himwith clothing of humiliation on the Day of Resurrection, then itwill be set ablaze.”(Reported by Abu Dawood and Ibn Maajah)
Sources: “Jilbaab al-Mar’atil-Muslimah fil-Kitaab was-Sunnah” by Shaikh Al-Albani