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The Case for the Head Scarf

Nothing can add elegance to a woman’s cool-weather look like a well-worn head scarf. Head scarves are mostly out of vogue in the West. But they have several advantages over traditional winter scarves.

  • They’re much more versatile than traditional winter scarves. You can only throw a winter scarf around your neck so many ways. Square head scarves work as hats, scarves, and neckerchiefs while a longer, rectangular scarf (like a pashmina) can also work as a wrap or even a breast-feeding cover for new moms.
  • They’re better protection from the elements. Wear a light scarf to keep the wind out of your hair on a mild autumn day or a heavier scarf to keep your ears much warmer than just a hat or pair of earmuffs.
  • They’re gentler on your hairstyle than bulky winter hats. Because scarves fit loosely around your whole head, you won’t end up with any creases where the elastic from your hat pushes down your tresses.
  • Head scarves are just classy. They make a statement about your willingness to look beautiful and refined, even when the weather outside is frightful. They also add an elegant frame to your face for an extra touch of grace.

How to Wear a Headscarf

The Classic Headscarf. The classic headscarf is a great way to protect your hair from wind or rain, any time of year.

Audrey Hepburn sports a classic headscarf.

  1. First, take a square scarf—silk will look the most refined—and fold the scarf into a triangle. Drape the long end of the triangle just above your hairline or bangs.
  2. Cross the two corners under your chin.
  3. Tie the corners together behind your back in a square, over the trailing end of the scarf. Make sure at least a little of your hairline is showing if you don’t want to look sickly.

Unfortunately for me, this only works for women with small-to-average-sized heads, unless you want to make your own scarf.

The Pashmina Headscarf. You can keep your head wonderfully warm during the winter by using a long, rectangular wrap for a headscarf. It is also a great alternative for women like me with larger-than-normal noggins.

  1. First, find the middle of the scarf, lengthwise. Place it just above the center of your forehead, but leave a bit of hair alluringly visible. Of course, if it is exceptionally cold outside, you’ll want to cover up as much as you can.
  2. Cross the ends of your scarf under your chin.
  3. What you do with the ends then is up to you. You can throw both ends behind you for a particularly glamorous look. Or pull them all the way around your neck and tuck them into the front of your jacket for added warmth.

One response »

  1. On a similar peal, the “buff” is a branded, multifunctional accessory that can server all of these roles and more. Their list of “ways to wear” includes balaclava, cap, do-rag, face mask, foulard, hair tie, hairband, hat liner, headband, helmet liner, hood, gaiter, neckerchief, pirate, sahariane, sun guard, and wristband. The company’s got them in a variety of fabrics and styles to cover just about all outdoor activities, and plenty of prints and colors to boot. Worth a look in any case.


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