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A beginner’s guide to hijabs

Muslim American women answer basic questions about the head covering — like whether you wear one during sex.

Layla Shaikley wants you to know that she doesn’t shower in her hijab. This may seem like an obvious fact to many, but it isn’t uncommon for Muslim American women to receive questions like this on a daily basis. With humor and tact — and probably more grace than many deserve — The Secret Life of Muslims cast don their best to answer all your hijab-related questions. Meanwhile, Reza Aslan makes an appearance to share a little sage advice on the subject to fellow Muslim men.

Draped or folded, sheer or thick, neutral or colorful, hijabs are as diverse as the women who wear them. Reporter Dena Takruri, who wears a hijab while she prays, says, “There’s this Western stereotype that a Muslim woman who wears it did not have the choice to do so. It is seen as a symbol of oppression rather than a symbol of devotion.”

But when asked about the headscarves, these Muslim American women spoke of them as a matter of pride and personal expression.

“Hey, peeps, I’m a Muslim!” Shaikley says. “What’s up?”

In the latest installment of The Secret Life of Muslims, everyone weighs in, from US Olympiad Ibtihaj Muhammad, who wears her hijab under her fencing mask, to Women’s March on Washington co-chair Linda Sarsour.