Those who follow my LookBooks may be a bit confused, who is this strange girl without eccentric clothing and bold lipstick? It is I, Saba, in full Pakistani getup. The traditional outfit of Pakistan is called a Salwar Kameez, pronounced [shawl-var k-ah-meez]. It consists of a loose fitting top that tends to be from where your bum ends to your feet depending on what you prefer. The bottoms are basically giant harem pants with a big drawstring so you can gather the excess material in to whatever size you’d like. Men and women both wear them, but women’s tend to have fancier patterns and ornamentation while men’s are one color with perhaps a small bit of embroidery.
Things I would like to clarify about the salwar kameez are as follows:
- It is a lot of material, but it is still very breathable in the hot weather. The material is lighter or heavier based on the seasons, and the looseness of the bottoms allows for your legs to breath without exposing them to direction sunlight, making it a safe option for your skin.
- The only people to wear traditional salwar kameez are older women, men, and those living in small villages. Most younger people in large cities wear American clothing, such as jeans and t-shirts, and women wear leggings along with long tops or fitted slacks.
- The shawl worn by women around the neck is called a dupatta, and many choose not to wear them anymore. I only wore my hijab while in Makhad because it is a small village, but in Islamabad or Lahore I didn’t have to wear one.
So overall, salwar kameez are the comfiest clothing known to humans. It is super loose so you can eat all the food you want and never feel uncomfortable. It’s breathable and light in the summer and keeps you from getting burnt. It comes in beautiful variety so it’ll never go out of style. And, they keep you from getting skin cancer, so really, what are you waiting for?