I have the four-est of C-est (it’s a thing) hair. My tresses are thick, coily and super delicate. They don’t align with global beauty standards, contrasting values set on the straightness and length of women’s hair. I’m fine with that, because I was blessed to love my hair texture the way Allah (S) made it grow out of my scalp with its versatility.
A person has to be born with enough thickness and texture to make their hair span out to the world in a powerful afro or release it into a bouncy twist out. Braids are easy peasy, and locs are always an option. We can even make straight with a few passes of a flat iron. Yeah, natural Black hair is pretty cool, but it does require special and complex care and products that will strengthen and enhance its beauty, not damage it.
People caring for their natural hair must constantly search for products and accessories that they can use on their precious hair without causing dryness or breakage. For Muslim women who wear hijab, that includes scrutinizing any fabric they will drape over their heads. Wearing hijabs and underscarves made from the wrong material can do some serious harm to nurtured tresses, making it a challenge to wear.
It can be hard for someone who wants to obey Allah (S) by covering to see their hair, that they work so hard to take care of, damaged through breakage or thinning. Many Muslim women must take measures to safeguard their hair and akhirah (afterlife) by adding a satin or silk barrier, like a headwrap or underscarf, to protect it from unfriendly fabrics that may look great but are not so great for their hair.
Unfortunately, the Muslim hijab market does not offer many headwraps, hijabs or underscarves that help reduce damage the damage to 4C hair, which is why I was so excited when I learned about Haute Hijab’s new Silk-Blend Satin Underscarves
. I eyed their classic underscarves for years, salty that I could not wear them because although they’re beautiful and soft, the classic weave would dry out my hair. Your girl needs to retain all of the moisture. So, I waited, and whined (full disclosure) and waited a little more.
I didn't know that the whole time I was pouting, the awesome HH team was hard at work making a product that women like me could wear. What was even cooler was that I was asked to try the new underscarves.
Silk-Blend Satin Underscarf
The sustainably processed silk-blend satin lining protects textured hair while keeping it moisturized. Hidden beneath the fabric is a silicone band that lines the front to keep your underscarf comfortably in place. The ruched back panel expands up to 12" and back-elastic expands by 6.5" to effortlessly accommodate varying hair volumes. A wide-cut band and ties at the nape create a custom fit for all-day comfort.
I was excited but had some reservations. Full disclosure: I love writing for the Haute Take (HH’s blog) and have been a regular contributor for two years. HH has also worked to represent Black Muslims in their marketing, and almost every hijab-wearing woman and girl is addicted to one or more of their products. But, I was unsure if they could create something that considered the needs of Black Muslim women with a range of hair types.
Well, I didn’t need to worry! They were like, we got y'all!
As usual, the material is like butter – soft and beautiful. But unlike the classic underscarf, this one had a silk-blend satin lining that just made me want to sing. Satin is a type of weave that produces a fabric that helps maintain natural oils in hair and reduces friction when used as a barrier between hair and other fabrics. So, the fabulous new lining in HH’s Silk-blend Satin Underscarf protects natural hair, allowing the wearer the chance to choose whatever hijab they want to wear over it, which is important to hijabi life.
Layla models HH's silk-lined underscarf.
Putting the Under in Underscarf
Like most Black Muslim women, I need an underscarf to protect my hair, but it is not always easy to find one that lays flat enough for me to conceal it under my hijab or that can hold all of my hair when I let my coils puff out in the back.
I love the wide band and ties of the satin-lined underscarf from HH. The band lays flat, so I have the choice to show the underscarf or conceal it under my hijab without it peeking through. The edge doesn’t roll like the ones on my other head wraps do, and the ties are a good length, giving me enough to get the fit I want. My hair is rarely one style, so I need a product that is adjustable for those “hump” days.
Speaking of which, you know those humps that some scholars complain about? Well, they are not always mounds of fabric to attain a certain look. For a lot of Black Muslim women, the “hump” is a natural occurrence, and most mainstream head scarves and head wraps can not contain them.
I was thrilled to discover that HH integrated its signature ruching in the back of their satin-lined underscarf that expands even further to accommodate more hair. So, I don’t have to worry about not having enough fabric to cover my ‘fro or braid bun. The back stretches up to 12 inches, so it should be able to hold locs as well. Because the fabric gathers, I don’t have to worry about a big bunch at the back of my head on those days when I have my hair in cornrows or flat ironed and don’t have as much volume. It fits me just right!
My Fellow Hijabis
I was so delighted with the new HH Silk-blend Satin Underscarf that I couldn’t stop talking about it with family and friends. My daughters are already asking for their own. I also hit social media, where I interacted with the social influencer @4c_hijabi
. I couldn’t wait to see what she thought
She provides so much beneficial advice
about caring for natural hair and hijab. And, she is just as pleased as I am and mentions gives a great review, listing the benefits of the new underscarf for Muslim women rocking their natural hair.
In our conversation, the 4c_Hijabi pointed out to me the way the underscarf does a good job with retaining precious moisture. I gushed over the comfortable fit.
So far, the underscarf has fulfilled product expectations.
I’ve gone over the benefits I found with the Silk-Blend Satin Underscarves
, but there are
a few cons. First, the $50 price can be cost prohibitive for some women, especially those like me with multiple daughters or who may want more than one.
It’s one thing to indulge in some HH goodness and buy one of the company’s many classy products, but if the new underscarf is going to become a staple of my wardrobe, then I need more than one. I also need one for bed because it is so dang comfortable! I know the price comes from the quality of the underscarf, it’s tech, fabric and sustainability aspects. But yeah, it’s still kind of steep.
I also am looking at a fat total in my HH cart, because my girls are not trying to hear that they can’t have one, at least not my oldest. And, I already have a missing cap!!!
I am also frustrated with the limited color options. Black and Mink? That’s it? Some more colors will be great.
So these are my criticisms. But, over all Haute Hijab knocked it out of the park for me with the new underscarf. The final product demonstrates that they dug in and did some serious research to fulfill the needs of Muslim women with natural hair. Not many Muslim companies owned by non-Black Muslims take the time and energy to consider the unique ways Black Muslim women navigate the deen enough to create something that makes our lives a little easier.