Iran Dress Code

The myth of the black chador!

Iran keeps surprising visitors by its myriad of attractions for lovers of history, culture, nature, arts and food. The country is more back-packer, hitchhiker, female-solo-traveler, Jewish friendly than its main-stream media representations. So, if your idea of Iranian women is a pair of eyes showing through the all-covering black piece of fabric, you might need to turn off your TV and read this post till the end to get better understanding about dress code in Iran.

Although “Chador” (female full-body-length covering) is still common throughout Iran, it is not and has never been mandatory in Iran except for when visiting certain religious institutions.

Nice experience to cover with “Chador”


The unwritten rules of Iran’s dress code are actually far more liberal than the written ones. The dos and don’ts of Hijab are pretty clear.

Here’s a guide for men and women on how to dress in IRAN:


Head covering is mandatory for ladies in public. The most common type of head covering is the headscarf “rousari/shawl”. The headscarf is to cover the hair and not the face. Your hair can show from the front/back of the headscarf but as a form of respect to the rules of the country, women tend to cover as much of the hair as possible. Some wrap the headscarf tightly and securely around the head, others wear it loosely… the choice is yours – try to find the most comfortable way that works you.

As far as color is concerned, there is almost no restriction; pink, blue, green, red, fluorescent orange…..! In fact you’ll be amazed by the variety of designs and colours of headscarfs available all across the country. The headscarf is also a form of fashion item amongst women in Iran – square, rectangular, big, small, silk, cotton … you name it!

Upper Body
Women in Iran wear long tunics “manto”. These are long sleeved dresses varying in length. Generally speaking it’s all about modesty – in Iran modesty is thought of a non-see-through material, closed collar, loosely fitted covering at least the buttocks. Three quarter length sleeves are also accessible.

Lower Body
Women in Iran do not show their legs in public. Long skirts or trousers are accessible. Trousers can be slim fit and/or ankle length … however remember the material should not be see-through. Cotton, Denim, Chinos…. again see what you feel most comfortable in!

Stay comfortable 🙂 giving you’ll be sightseeing all day! Nothing particular to say here- your choice really. Trainers, high heels, sandals, boots….


No head covering is required. You can wear hats of any form of shape desirable depending on the weather!

Upper Body
Men can wear long or short sleeve shirts and t-shirts. You cannot be topless in public and it is uncommon for men to wear vest like tops in public.

Lower Body
Long and cropped trousers are accessible. No shorts above the knees.

As per above, just make sure your comfortable 🙂 nothing else to say here!

Find out what other Iran travelers choose to wear in Iran: