When you put on the headscarf, or niqab, or burqa, you become a symbol. In the context of rising Islamophobia across Europe and America, visible Muslim women are reduced to a canvas onto which we project a set of conflicting, insidious stories. Every day, unspoken hostility slips over into outright aggression. In the week following the 2015 Paris attacks, there was a 300 per cent rise in the number of hate crimes perpetrated against Muslims in the UK – the overwhelming majority of the victims were women and girls dressed in traditional Islamic dress. This is a pattern repeated across Europe and the USA after every major terrorist attack, and every bogus poll purporting to reveal ‘What Muslims Really Think’. What does it feel like to bear this burden of representation? And what motivates women to wear the veil today? For Ladybeard's Mind Issue, we spoke to three Muslim women to find out. Here, we share Amani's testimony.