A Guide To Owning & Wearing The Kandora

A Guide To Owning & Wearing The Kandora

Dishdasha. Kandora. Thawb. Thobe. These are just a few of the many titles given to the traditional male robe in the Arabian Gulf region. And, like the number of names, they come in a variety of colors and designs.

So, suppose you live in the Arabian Peninsula and want to immerse yourself in the culture truly. In that case, this is your short guide to understand the variations between all the many kandoras in the Gulf.


Various GCC nations, as one could anticipate, have somewhat different clothing styles. Paying attention to the neckline and sleeves of someone's kandora is a vital clue for determining where they are from.

For example, the Emirati Kandora lacks a collar and is adorned with a long loose tassel and similar embroidery around the neck and sleeves. This is very similar to the Omani kandora, except that the tassel is shorter and more colorful. In Bahrain, however, the kandora is more loose-fitting and generally features a soft shirt collar. 

The kandoras available in Saudi Arabia, on the other side, are often more tightly knit than their Gulf counterparts. Modern variants often have a two-button band neckline and shirt sleeves designed to accommodate cufflinks. The Kuwaiti version is similar to this, except for a one-button band collar and a slim fit. The kandora in Qatar is shinier and features a lengthy band collar or even a shirt pocket.


The most frequently asked question is if the many colors of the kandora symbolize anything. They do not. It is just a matter of personal taste. White is the most popular color because it is the coolest color to wear in intense desert temperatures. Summer kandoras are often made of very light fabrics.

Some individuals may wear a variety of colors to show off their flair. The winter season sees an increase in multicolored kandoras, notably darker colored kandoras like black and brown. These colors are often manufactured from a considerably thicker material.

Another prevalent myth is that white is only worn in a formal setting, like weddings or mosque visits. This, once again, is not the case. Even though white kandoras are significantly more popular, wearing a new hue is usually an intelligent approach to grab attention.


Arab guys wear the traditional headgear known as ghutrah. It is a square fabric, generally made of cotton. This kind of headgear is often embroidered in red-and-white color. Just like kandora, this color combination also doesn't symbolize anything. It is entirely up to a man's stylistic taste whether he wears a white ghutrah or not.


You've probably seen many native Arabs wear a black cloak over their kandora. This is called the Bisht and is often black, brown, beige, cream, or grey in color. Because it is an extra layer, it is sometimes misinterpreted as 'winter clothing,' although this is not the situation. A bisht is worn for dignity by royalty or influential persons and on special events such as the groom's weddings or celebrations.

So, now that you know the basics of traditional Arab clothing, head on to Meemo to purchase a stylish and unique Arab kandora that is sure to make you the show stopper in any room!