I read recently in "Drawn Together by Modesty" that there had been a panel discussion about this topic, specifically dwelling on women who are religious who cover their heads or hair. A review can be found at The Daily Free Press: "Women dissect headscarves in religion", by Crystal Rim. It seems according to this article that the panel was made up of Jewish and Muslim women, but I do hope to find more information. Part of the review:
“I do like that there’s a piece of my beauty that is reserved only for my husband and my family,” Heller said. “They see me one way, and the public can’t look at me in the same way.”
Heller, Rabbi Avi Heller’s wife, said Orthodox Jewish women traditionally wear a headscarf after they are married. Similarly, the Quran states that women have to cover their faces, though it does so ambiguously.
The speakers said they found that most women who cover their hair choose to do so out of a sacred and individual conviction rather than a male-driven demand.
I also came across this short blog article, "Hijabies are misinterpreted", by "hijabgirl18":
. . . People don’t know a lot about who we really are and I think it’s up to us to educate these people about who we are and why we behave this way. You can do your part too. When anyone asks you why you wear a hijab don’t just say it’s religious headcovering, tell them why we wear it. I remember my friend asking me that question and here’s what I decided to tell her…..~~~~~~~~~~~~~
” I wear it because it symbolizes me as a muslim, and protect me from the evil eyes of certain people around me. I wear it because I want people to like me for who I am and what I am capable of. Not what I dress like and look like.”
A lot of my non-muslim friends encourage me not to wear it and that I look prettier without it but I always tell them who I am and what I believe. I also tell them it’s my choice and that I believe in modest dressing.
Another good, interesting article, explaining why one woman chose to cover her head and hair, and her experiences along with a few others:
Scarf exposes Norman woman’s beliefs
Religion: Covering gives testimony to Muslim faith
BY CARLA HINTON, NewsOK.com (Oklahoma)