When Hilal Ibrahim found out that hijabi healthcare workers were so concerned about possible CoronaVirus infection that they were tossing out their hijabs after their shifts, she went to work designing a sanitary hijab that could easily be washed and safely reused. To date, over 700 of these sanitary hijabs have been donated to COVID-19 doctors and nurses.
“Women need to be confident that what they’re placing on their heads is clean and doesn’t need to be rationed or reused in the same way a masks or a face shield is,” says Ms. Ibrahim. “More importantly they shouldn’t have to bring their hijabs back and forth to their homes, which could potentially expose their families or others to anything they came into contact with at the hospital.”
Ms. Ibrahim is no stranger to the unique needs of the hijab wearing woman in the medical fields. Last year, she set up the company Henna & Hijabs, a boutique specializing in organic henna hijabs, specifically geared to women in the health care professions.
The fashion designer and activist makes the point that sanitary hijabs are important for infection control though it is unfortunately often considered unessential by those who are not familiar with the religious and cultural significance. “I hope we can move toward a better understanding and breakdown some of the barriers non-Muslim folks have around hijabs.”