What is the Difference Between An Abaya & A Maxi Dress?

Muslim women have numerous options for their clothing styles in modern times. These different types of womenswear combine elegance and modesty to provide you with an ideal get-up for your daily activities. 

Since each type of dress has its pros and cons, you can choose the best for yourself according to your needs. This post will help you make that choice! Gear up to revamp your wardrobe, because this article will reveal essential information about the two most popular womenswear across the Muslim world- an Abaya and a Maxi dress

So if you’re going back and forth between an Abaya and Maxi dress, it’s time to choose the one most convenient for you. 

Let’s dive into it!

What Is An Abaya?

An Abaya is a traditional Muslim womenswear that consists of a single garment to cover your entire body from shoulders to ankles. The main purpose of an Abaya is to practice modesty by concealing your whole body, which is highly encouraged in Islam. 

Abayas are arguably the most common Muslimah attire across the globe, since it can be worn everywhere from supermarkets to casual meetups with your friends. In fact, now you can design your ideal Abayas by mixing up your favorite colors with different styles. 

Now let’s go through a very similar option to Abayas for Muslim women.

What Are Maxi Dresses?

Like Abayas, Maxi dresses are made up of a single cloth that envelopes your body from shoulders to ankles. Maxi dresses are identical to Abayas, only that they are usually form-fitting at the top and free-flowing towards the lower part. Some types of Maxi dresses also have a belt that you can wrap around your waist.

For this reason, Maxi dresses are extremely comfortable around your legs and very stylish at the same time. Because of their versatile style, you can wear them on all special occasions like events, weddings, and family gatherings. 

What is the Difference Between An Abaya and A Maxi Dress?

While Abayas and Maxi dresses are the two faces of the same coin, there are still some key differences that distinguish them. 

Here are five key differences between Abayas and Maxi dresses:


Abayas are designed to cover the whole body, while the Maxi dresses are a bit more stylish. While Abayas can have a straight stitch from top to bottom, Maxi dresses are form-fitting on the upper part with their bottom free flowing, making them more suitable for parties and events.


There are few dresses for women that they can wear anywhere at any time; Abayas are one of them. Muslim women can take part in everyday activities like grocery shopping by wearing an Abaya while also wearing it at events and parties. On the flip side, Maxi dresses are not suitable for everyday activities as they are fancier than Abayas.

Public Familiarity

If we talk about Abayas, they are more common in the Muslim world because they are traditionally associated with “pardah”. Maxi dresses, on the contrary, are more commonly associated with fashion and are gradually becoming common among pious Muslimahs.


Prices for both attires can vary from person to person. However, if we look at the prices of basic maxi dresses and Abayas, we can see that maxi dresses are a little more expensive as they are fancier than Abayas.

Comfort Level

Maxi dresses add more glamor to your style than the Abayas, but the catch with them is they are a little difficult to carry. That’s why they are not recommended to wear during physically demanding tasks like cooking or while doing house chores. Abayas, on the other hand, are more comfortable to use for Muslim women.

Have A Look At The Best Abayas And Maxi Dresses In Pakistan

Abayas and Maxi dresses are the most common dresses for pious Muslimahs across the globe- especially in Pakistan. 

Looking to opt for the best in the market? Check out Malbus to choose from the most trendy and glamorous dresses for women!

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