Is Makeup Haram? – All You Need to Know


Photo Courtesy: donireewalker

Wearing makeup is a form of beautification and expression of one’s character. As Muslims, it might pop into our mind whether applying makeup is in line with Islamic teaching.

In this article, we look into details on how Islam rules the application of makeup for men and women. We also share some tips on how to choose Halal makeup products.

Table of Content:
1. What Do the Quran and Hadith Say About Makeup?
2. Can Muslim women wear makeup in public?
3. Is it haram for Muslim men to wear makeup?
4.Is It Haram to Wear Makeup While Praying?
5. Is Semi-permanent makeup haram?
6. Is Wearing Makeup in Ramadan Haram?
7. Is Being a Makeup Artist Haram?
8. Is It Okay to Use Makeup Containing Alcohol?
9. Haram Ingredients in Makeup
10.Tips to Choose Halal & Safe Beauty Products
11. List of Halal Makeup & Cosmetic Brands
12. The Bottom Line

What Do the Quran and Hadith Say About Makeup?

It is natural for women to adorn and beautify themselves. In general, Muslim scholars from across major schools of thought in Islam agree that wearing makeup for women is permissible under certain conditions. (source)

  • Wear makeup only for husband and mahrams.
  • Makeup should only be temporary.

The first aspect is what Muslim scholars usually emphasize. Muslim women are allowed to wear makeup for their husbands. Wearing makeup should not be aimed to attract non-mahram individuals.

This fatwa is based on Quran Surah An-Nur verse 31.

“And tell the believing women to reduce [some] of their vision and guard their private parts and not expose their adornment except that which [necessarily] appears thereof and to wrap [a portion of] their headcovers over their chests and not expose their adornment [i.e., beauty] except to their husbands, their fathers, their husbands” fathers, their sons, their husbands’ sons, their brothers, their brothers’ sons, their sisters’ sons, their women, that which their right hands possess [i.e., slaves], or those male attendants having no physical desire,4 or children who are not yet aware of the private aspects of women. And let them not stamp their feet to make known what they conceal of their adornment. And turn to Allah in repentance, all of you, O believers, that you might succeed.”

Source: Quran 24:31

Speaking of husbands, check out our recent post 21 halal gift ideas for him if you’re looking to get him a gift!

The second aspect has to do with making wudu (ablution).

Making wudu is an important part of Muslim daily routines. To complete wudu, water must reach the skin surface.

Thus, it is forbidden if the makeup forms a waterproof resistance on the skin. It is also not allowed to get permanent makeup, such as lip and eyebrow tattoos (find out when it is halal to have tattoos and when it’s haram).

Permeability of makeup is the same area of concern as to why nail polish is not always considered halal. Check out our recent post to learn more about when nail polish is halal or haram.

Can Muslim Women Wear Makeup in Public?

Photo Credit: xtina5645

This topic is somewhat controversial.

Some strict Islamic scholars rule haram for Muslim women to apply makeup in public because such beautification should only be restricted to their husbands and mahrams.

Here is the fatwa cited from Islamweb.

“However, it is not permissible for a woman to put any makeup in her face when going out of the house since she intends to uncover her face in front of other non-Mahram men other than her husband and Mahram men because this is forbidden as this means revealing her beauty and causing temptation to other men. Indeed, we clarified this matter in Fataawa 126283 and 122891.”

Source: Islamweb.net

According to Mufti Siraj Desai from Darul-Uloom Abubakr, South Africa, women are allowed to put some makeup in front of non-mahram to cover up scars and marks, for example by applying foundation. (source)

On the other hand, some other scholars believe that women are allowed to put makeup in public to look good and presentable; however, it should be kept basic and simple. Most importantly, the makeup must not attract unnecessary attention, especially from non-mahram individuals.

Here is a Youtube video from Syaikh Abu Esa (FaithIQ) to what extent one can wear makeup in public.

Is It Haram for Muslim Men to Wear Makeup?

Muslim scholars agree that men are not allowed to put makeup on their face, because it is seen as imitating women and prohibited in Islam. (source)

Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) cursed men who imitate women and vice versa, as mentioned in the hadith below.

Narrated by Ibn Abbas: “The Messenger of Allah (PBUH) cursed the women who imitate men and the men who imitate women.”

Source: Sunnah.com

However, when the purpose of wearing makeup is to cover up defective parts on one’s body or face (for example, dark spots), this is considered permissible.

If the intention is to cover an unsightly defect on one’s body, it will be permissible as long this act is not done for the purposes of deception or imitation of the opposite gender (females).

source: Darul Ifta Birmingham via Islamqa.org

What About Wearing Kohl For Men?

Wearing kohl for men and women are permissible in Islam. In fact, it has been practiced since the time of the Prophet (PBUH) and is one of the sunnas.

”Wearing kohl is one of the sunnas of the Prophet, peace be upon him. It is allowed for both males and females. Unless you will bring undue attention to yourself, it is permissible for you to wear kohl.”

(source)

Is It Haram to Wear Makeup While Praying?

Making wudu is a prerequisite before performing daily prayers (salah). In that case, one has to wash face, arms, and feet thoroughly.

First, make sure the cosmetics are free from impure (najis) and haram ingredients. (source)

Ultimately, the makeup products do not prevent water from reaching the skin surface. In this case, the wudu performed while wearing makeup is considered valid. On the other hand, if the makeup forms a layer or barrier on the skin, the wudu is incomplete. (source)

The typical products that affect wudu or ghusl are nail polish, waterproof makeup (for example, waterproof lipstick, foundation, eyeshadow, etc.), and permanent makeup (such as lip and eyebrow tattoos).

For further reading about the ruling of wearing nail polish, read our article here.

Is Semi-Permanent Makeup Haram?

Semi- and permanent makeup (also known as cosmetic tattooing or micro-pigmentation) are highly preferred by many women for its ready look. With one procedure, the makeup can last for several months to years.

Examples of cosmetic tattooing are eyebrow tattoos, microblading, lip tattoos, etc.

The procedure is identical to tattooing by injecting inks or pigment into the skin layer. Thus, the ruling is also similar to tattooing.

According to Darul Iftaa, it is impermissible for women to get or perform cosmetic tattooing unless for medical purposes, such as disguising scars. (source)

Read our recent article, are tattoos halal or haram, to learn more about the rulings of tattoos.

Is Wearing Makeup in Ramadan Haram?

Wearing makeup doesn’t necessarily break the fast.  It is also okay to apply some lipstick or lip moisturizer during fasting as long as it is not ingested. (source)

There are some precautions to take before putting makeup on your skin:

– Ensure they don’t contain haram and harmful ingredients
– Wear non-waterproof makeup that allows water to reach your skin during wudu

Questioning what else is haram or halal during Ramadan? check out our recent post, Can you listen to music during Ramadan to learn more about what is accepted and what’s not according to Islamic experts

Is Being a Makeup Artist Haram?

Photo Courtesy: anomalous allure

Muslim scholars agree that being a makeup artist (professional or part-time) is permissible as long as it doesn’t contradict Islamic rulings.

Some of the prohibited beauty practices are:

– Plucking eyebrows
– Uncovering awrah (private part)
– Drawing tattoos

Darul Ifta Birmingham also addresses the same question about taking a job as a makeup artist. Here is the answer.

“Yes, it is permissible to be a makeup artist as it does not contradict any of the rulings of Islam, such that a woman beautifying herself for her husband is even an act of reward. However, as you mentioned you should not do anything that contradicts the rulings of Islam, like plucking eyebrows, drawing tattoos, or seeing the awrah (private area) of another woman.”

Source: Darul Ifta Birmingham

Check out our recent post to learn more about whether fashion designing is halal or haram.

Is It Okay to Use Makeup Containing Alcohol?

If the alcohol is from grapes and dates extract (khamr), it is not permissible. It is permitted if other sources are used, such as sugarcane molasses or other synthetic sources.

However, not every cosmetic brand mentions the source of the alcohol. Therefore, if we can’t obtain the information, the best choice is to stay on the safe side by using alcohol-free cosmetics. (source)

Haram Ingredients in Makeup

Cosmetics and makeup products often contain a long list of ingredients. As Muslims, we must ensure that they are produced only with pure and lawful substances.

It is crucial that makeup products must not contain unlawful substances. Here are typical haram and questionable ingredients in makeup products that should always be on your lookout. (source) (source)

1. Carmine (E-120)

Carmine is a bright red pigment extracted from crushed cochineal beetles (a type of insect). It is typically used in food and makeup products, such as lipstick, eyeshadow, and blushers.

On the label, carmine also goes by other names: carminic acid, E120, cochineal, natural red 4, and crimson lake.

According to Hanafi scholars, external application of products containing carmine is permissible because the insect itself is not impure (najis), such as in eyeshadow, blushers, or powders.

However, applying lipstick containing carmine must be avoided because there is a high risk of ingestion. (source)

Hanafi and Maliki scholars forbid eating food items containing carmine. Meanwhile, some other scholars consider carmine halal because it has transformed into a completely different substance.

2. Glycerin

Glycerin (or glycerol) can be sourced from plants and animals (pig). There are different opinions regarding the permissibility of glycerin from animal sources.

Some scholars rule that using animal-derived glycerin in non-food products is permissible because it has undergone complete transformation (istihalah).

Meanwhile, some scholars consider it haram because the metamorphosis doesn’t occur. (source) (source)

3. Gelatin and Collagen

Both gelatin and collagen are usually used in face creams and lotions. They are haram if obtained from pork (source).

Learn more about halal collagen supplements.

4. Linoleic Acid, Oleic Acid, Stearic Acid (oil)

These substances are typically sourced from both plants and animals. They are haram if porcine-derived.

Next to haram ingredients, it is also prohibited to use harmful components or chemical substances that will cause an adverse effect on the body immediately or in the future because Islam strictly forbids harming oneself.

The list of harmful substances in makeup products may vary among countries. Some of the common toxic chemicals to avoid are:

  • Mercury,
  • Paraben,
  • Hydroquinone,
  • Formaldehyde,
  • Phthalates,
  • Sodium lauryl sulfate,
  • Triclosan, etc. (source)

Tips to Choose Halal & Safe Beauty Products

We have some simple tips to help you pick halal beauty products.

  1. Choose a Halal-certified product.
  2. Opt for alcohol-free, vegan-friendly, and cruelty-free products.
  3. Buy from reliable brands and always check thoroughly for labeling and ingredients list. Make sure that the makeup product doesn’t contain questionable substances and toxic chemicals

The easiest option is to choose Halal-certified products. Nowadays, finding makeup brands with Halal certification is getting easier in Muslim-majority countries and Western countries, such as North America and Europe.

If you can’t find Halal-certified makeup, try option 2 and always read the label carefully. If you have some doubts about particular products, check the producers’ website or do not hesitate to contact them via email.

List of Halal Makeup & Cosmetic Brands

1- 786 Halal Nail Polish

Check out the 786 Halal Nail Polish in all Colors on Amazon (link to Amazon)

2- Karma Organic Halal Nail Polish

Check out the Karma Organic Halal Nail Polish in all Colors on Amazon (link to Amazon)

3- Ibn Halal Lipstick

The Bottom Line

Muslim scholars agree that Muslim women can apply makeup to beautify themselves for their husbands and families but not attract non-mahram individuals.

Men are strictly forbidden from wearing makeup, unless to cover up defects, such as scars, blemishes, or dark spots.

We believe that we have presented you with various reliable sources about makeup from the Islamic perspective, and the decision comes back to you. May Allah know the Best.

Rosa Safitri

Rosa is a freelance writer specializing in travel and food-related topics. Born and raised in Indonesia, she used to take halal foods for granted. During her study in the Netherlands, she realized that finding halal foods can be a challenge. She grew interested in this topic and wrote a thesis about Halal Certification in the Netherlands. Since then, she’s always been excited to write and share knowledge about halal foods.

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