Reference: Fataawa wa Rasaa.il Mukhtaarah – Pages 560-561
Question: I live in a village where the women do not cover their faces [when infront of non-mahram men]; And [likewise] I want to uncover my face, so is there any sin upon me if I did that, since wearing the niqaab causes the men to turn and look?
Response: It is not permissible for a woman to go out infront of [non-mahram] men with her face uncovered – covering the face is obligatory. As for the others who criticise her about it, then [her being confronted with] this [behaviour] is from [the reasons] which Allaah multiplies her reward [for wearing the niqaab]. She is required to be patient upon her obedience to her Lord, and anticipate the reward [from Him]. So she should not let these things concern her, nor worry about [what] the people [say] whilst she is in obedience to Allaah (Subhaanahu wa Ta’aala).
And with Allaah lies all success.