How Not To Wear A Ghutra/Shemagh

Dear Readers,

This post is primarily aimed at readers outside of Saudi Arabia, and specifically those in Hollywood.You know how you are…you make those atrocious movies in which to depict an Arab you simply take any man with a swarthy complexion, and throw a random checked/plain piece of cloth on their head..and Ta da!  Lo and behold you have an Arab! The utter disregard to the quality of material, lack of starch and total haphazard way its done pains me. Don’t even get me started on the negative stereotypical roles portrayed by Arab characters in Hollywood.

In reality, the ghutra/shemagh as worn by men in the Gulf, adds to their charm, and can look anything from sophisticated to trendy to functional- but never ever do you see them wear it in the ridiculous fashion showed on T.V.

Anyway, as incorrectly worn headgear/ghutra.shemagh/keffiyeh/checkered cloth on T.V is really a pet peeve of mine, I decided I simply had to illuminate the unwashed masses about how not to wear the ghutra. I was having difficulty finding the screenshots of movies where they trash the image of the pristine and noble garment that is the ghutrah-I’ll update this post as and when I find them.

Until then here are a few examples of How NOT to Wear A Ghutra:

1) Dumb Dude: A I wanna dress up like a Arab/terrorist/ Lawrence of Arabia for Halloween, what do I wear, dude?
Dumber Dude: Oooh that’s scary! Okay dude, put on a checkered piece of cloth/tablecloth on your head, and you’re good, maybe wear a  white dress, haw haw haw. See result below-

:arab headgear, ghutra, american, idiot, saudi
The Halloween’ style

2) Next up is the “napkin wig’ style sported by Sadiq Hussain’s character in an old Van Damme movie called ”Bloodsport”, first of all he looks like a tan East Asian man, not Arab, and that has got be the shortest/smallest shemagh I’vee seen in my life. So here they took a red and white check napkin scrunched it on top of Asian guys head and secured with the ágaal, so that it looks bit like a wig. 

Arab, shemagh, wig style, asian man dressed as Arab, saudi
The napkin wig style

3) I’m torn on what to call the next style, the “I’m gay and I’m proud of it”- that’s why I’m wearing a green thobe and matching keffiyeh, if you have problem with that-talk to the hand.
“I’m really a Saudi girl, disugised as a guy coz I wanted drive/go to a football game” style, and so I decided to put on my matching olive green scarf to go with my olive green thobe/dishdasha, -white is just not my colour!.. I guess, ‘I’m really a girl style’ works  either way if you know what I mean?

green thobe, green ghutra, covering face
I’m really a girl style

4) Another style insisting on blurring gender boundaries is the “Audrey Hepburn” style, quite self explanatory, drape the ghotra gracefully around your face,  style your bangs, and flutter your eyelashes, and voila!

audrey hepburn, scarf

shemagh, scarf, american
An AmericanWannabe Saudi- Who’dve thought?!

Finally, I would like to leave you with a picture showing you how its really done. It depicts the many right ways of wearing the ghutra/shemagh, check out the Saudi Jeans post for details on each style.

ghutra, shemagh keffiyah, saudi, arabia, uae, kuwait
Caption this picture !

 Please caption the picture above in the comments section!

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8 thoughts on “How Not To Wear A Ghutra/Shemagh

  1. My sister and I are reading this and giggling.


    “Hey good lookin…you like mah ghutra? ;D”


  2. LoL, funny post-let's hope some one in Hollywood reads it:p
    caption: in Californication 😛


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