Protected against what?
Against staring eyes or against bird poo?
And what exactly is protected?
Is it beauty that needs to be protected?
In some countries a protection in itself is a comfortable way to not get sunburned. A way to stay unnoticed in the masse or to show the rest of us that you are part of a specific group. Also the protection is believed as conserving the beauty of the wearer and therefor symbolically decorated with beautifying elements.
In any case, it won’t fully protect from the bigger disasters in life, like bush fires or diseases.