What are the Must-Have Types of Salwar Suits for Your Wardrobe?

What are the Must-Have Types of Salwar Suits for Your Wardrobe?

Style Essentials: What are the Must-Have Types of Salwar Suits for Your Wardrobe?

The salwar kameez is a traditional Indian garment worn by women across south-east Asia. It is a three-part outfit that consists of a long tunic, called the kameez, a loose pair of pants, called the salwar and a flowing scarf, called the dupatta.

This garment came to India during the Mughal times and has since become a staple part of women’s fashion in India. It is much appreciated for its comfort and versatility and is worn in almost every part of the country in a slightly different form.

There are many types of salwar kameez in India. These regional variations are supplemented by the different types of salwar kameez created by designers that are more modern and innovative. Thus women shopping for salwar kameez are often astounded by the immense variety and wide range of options presented to them.

The types of salwar suits can be differentiated on the basis of many factors, including silhouette, fabric, color, designs, work and patterns. In terms of silhouette, for instance, women can choose between a lot of different types of salwar suits including the straight-cut suit, the Anarkali suit, the Punjabi suit, the abaya suit and the Pakistani suit


Of all these salwar kameez types, the Anarkali is currently the most popular and trendy style. Named after the famous Mughal dancer who wore these types of dresses, the Anarkali is one garment composed of two parts: the well-fitted corset-like top and the flowing umbrella-shaped lower half.

Pakistani Suits

A new variation of this is the Pakistani suit which combines the Anarkali cut with a floor-length design and long sleeves, creating a very regal, elegant silhouette. The Punjabi suit is widely worn across Punjab and is distinguished by the short kameez and the voluminous, pleated pants, also called Patiala.

Designers have also popularized many new types of silhouettes which are often vaguely inspired by the kinds of clothes worn by royal women in ancient times. For instance, the coat-type salwar kameez is very similar to the men’s sherwani in its look and closely resembles the heavy and richly patterned attire worn by Mughal queens. It fits beautifully and is usually made of thick Banarasi brocades woven and embroidered with beautiful gold and silver thread designs.

Additional Reads: Why are Salwar Suits a Go-To Choice for Comfort-Seekers?

Jacket Style Suits

The jacket-type designer salwar suits are also similar to these but often have the jacket as a separate component designed to be worn over the kameez. The jacket is often made of translucent materials to create a beautiful layering effect; alternatively, two rich fabrics may be chosen to bring out the beauty of both.

Another designer garment that has become immensely popular, especially as wedding wear, is the frock-type salwar kameez. These are usually much heavier and more voluminous than the normal salwar suit and come with a more flowing, designer frock suit like cut that reaches to the calves or beyond.

There are also many different types of salwar kameez designs to choose from in terms of designs and patterns. One of the most popular types of salwar suits for casual, every day or office wear is the printed variety. These vibrant and eye-catching printed suits come in a multitude of bright colors and often utilize soft, absorbent materials like cotton and silk.

The prints can be exquisite and traditional hand-block prints like Batik, Dabu, or Sanganeri or they can be machine-made ethnic prints like Warli and Madhubani. Nowadays the more Western types of salwar suits come printed with abstract modern designs including geometric shapes, funky lines, waves and stylized depictions of animals.

Many different types of salwar suit designs are also made using traditional Indian crafts. From resham embroidery to zari work, zardosi embroidery to ek taar work, and crystal designs to bead patterns, women will find a plethora of dazzling options to choose from for formal and party occasions.

Style Tips

Currently, the trendiest type of bridal salwar kameez would probably be the Anarkali suit. From the daringly cut v-neck salwar suits to the deep back, full-sleeve Pakistani suits, Anarkalis have made their presence felt on the red carpet and are very popular with women for formal occasions.

An Anarkali is also very simple to style as the rule of thumb here is that less is more. Instead of opting for heavy jewelry that might overwhelm the outfit, women can go for a pair of dazzling crystal earrings, a Kundan pendant, a pearl nose ring or a pearl earrings and necklace set.

With the more casual straight-cut salwar kameez for daily wear, women should opt for light and breezy jewelry that accentuates the fun element of the outfit. This includes unique ethnic jewelry like wooden bangles, beads necklaces, terracotta sets and tribal earrings. A pretty embroidered jute bag will be a useful and beautiful addition to the outfit.