Why Do People Wear Turbans?

Why do people wear turbans? Turbans are a common sight, and in many cultures people wear turbans solely for functional purposes, but others wear them due to their religious beliefs. Nobody actually knows the exact origin of the turban, yet this form of headware has been around for more than 3,000 years. Assyrian carvings from that era depict kings wearing the headdresses.

But what are turbans? Turbans are head coverings which consist of a long piece of cloth that is wrapped around the top of the head. The turban material is up to 12 feet long. One of the major reasons why people wear this piece of cloth is for protection, particularly in a desert climate. The sun is so hot that people have to wear something on the top of their head to protect them. They lessen occurrences of headaches, hair loss, and protection from the suns ultra violet rays and other harmful affects. Aside from this, turbans keep the wearer’s hair clean, neat and held in place. Moreover, the turbans keep the desert dust from their faces.

Turbans also add a protective coating against relentless desert sun and wind. A number of nomadic tribes have worn these in order to hide their true identities. They are hardly recognized because of their turbans. Some cultures wear them for other reasons. For example, men who practice the Sikh religion that originated in Pakistan and India never cut their hair, since this is an indication of respect not only for God but His creation as well. Thus, the reason why do people wear turbans in this religion is to protect their lengthy locks and at times even their beards. Also, other men from India wear turbans to broadcast their class or caste or indicate their religion. In turkey however, turbans are often used to showcase the wealth or status of a man. But the styles of turban differ from religion to religion. For instance, the turbans of Sikh are simple cloths being wound around the head, and some have a front fold over the forehead.

It must be understood, however, that this is not a reliable sign that somebody belongs to a definite cultural group or that every member of a certain group always wear turbans. Sometimes it is also believed that those who wear turbans could be terrorists. The reason for this misconception is that several Islamic extremists have worn turbans as part of their ‘uniform’. With this article, it is expected that one will have clearer idea as to why people wear turbans and that at times what is believed to be a valid reason for wearing a turban could be nothing more than a misconception.

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