Note: The following are some examples of beautification on the hands and that must be covered from non-Mahram men:
Ring (even if it is one’s wedding ring)
Long finger nails
Certain types of watches which are worn as a means of beautification
Certain types of gloves which are worn as a means of beautification
The following are considered as beautification for the face:
Shaping of the eyebrows
Applying artificial eyebrows
Using any kind of makeup
Having a nose-ring (as is the custom is some cultures)
Other than these, anything else that the general population (of that particular area) considers as beautification is also included and these must all be covered while in the presence of non-Mahram men.
131 – Question: Do plucking the eyebrows for women constitute beautification (zinat) or not? Also, if a woman has her eyebrows plucked, must she cover her face from the view of non-Mahram men?
Answer: If the general public considers it as a beautification, then it wajib to cover it from non-Mahram men. AL
Answer: Yes, it will be considered as zinat and it must be covered from non-Mahram men. G
Answer: If the beautification of the face is done in such a way that is common even among old women, then it is not wajib to cover it from non-Mahram men. T
132 – Rule: In the ruling concerning the covering of the face and hands while in the presence of non-Mahram men, in the event that one has any beautification on – there is no difference between the non-Mahram man being a family member or an outsider. ABGKLMT
Therefore: In gatherings, or when guests come to one’s house who are family members or otherwise, women must either refrain from applying any type of beautification on their face and hands, or else cover them in front of the non-Mahram men.
133 – Question: I am a woman who wears a wedding ring (that is very simple) and it is not for zinat, but rather for remembrance and loyalty to my husband. Is it wajib for me to cover this from non-Mahram men?
Answer: To wear any kind of ring is considered as zinat, and therefore it is wajib to cover it from the sight of non-Mahram men. AGK
Answer: If it is arousing or stimulating, then it must be covered and in other than this, according to Ihtiyat (it must be covered). B
Answer: It is not wajib to cover those rings that women usually wear on their hands, from the view of non-Mahram men. T
Answer: In the event that the general public consider it is a zinat, it is necessary to cover it. L
134 – Question: Is there any difference in the type of beautification? For example, if one applies a type of beautification that according to her own custom is considered as zinat, however, for another group of people, not only is it not considered as a zinat, rather it is taken as something repulsive or ugly, then must this type of zinat be concealed from non-Mahram men as well?
Answer: Beautifying one’s self is not related to beauty or ugliness, and anything that the general public considers as zinat must be covered from non-Mahram men. ABGKL
Answer: If the beautification on the face or hands is done in such a way that is common even among old women, such as shaping the eyebrows or applying surma, then it is not wajib for the woman to cover it from non-Mahram men. In other than this scenario, it is wajib to cover it (whether it is considered as beautiful or ugly). U
135 – Question: Is it allowed for men and women to put perfume on or make themselves smell nice by other means, in the event that the smell of it reaches non-Mahram?
Answer: There is no problem in applying perfume, but if the usage of it for the woman leads to corruption, arousal or stimulation of (non-Mahram men), then it is not allowed. AK
Question: If a woman applies perfume on herself for a non-Mahram man, is it necessary for her to perform a Ghusl?
Answer: In the event that putting the perfume on is to attract the attention of non-Mahram men, then it is a problem. G
Answer: In the above scenario, it is Mustahab for her to perform a Ghusl. L
136 – Rule: According to Ihtiyat Wajib, women must cover artificial or synthetic hair, whether it has been joined to one’s own hair or if it is a wig or hairpiece that has been placed on top of the head. Also it does not make a difference if this joined hair is that of a man or a woman. AGKL
Answer: It is wajib for a woman to cover (it) from non-Mahram men. B
Answer: If this action is considered as a beautification, then it is wajib for her to cover it from non-Mahram men. M
137 – Question: What is the ruling for a woman beautifying herself for other than her husband, in gatherings where there are only women present such as in weddings, or dinner invitations only for women?
Answer: In the event that non-Mahram men do not see her, it is not a problem. ABGKLMST
138 – Question: Is there a problem for women to wear shoes that make noise, such that when one walks, non-Mahram men can her the sound of them?
Answer: In the event that corruption can be associated with it, one must refrain from it. K
139 – Rule: If a woman knows that a non-Mahram man will look at her face or hands with the intention of lust, then even if she does not have any zinat on them, she must cover these parts from him. AGKLMS
Answer: In the event that is leads or helps to commit a sin, then it is wajib to cover (these two parts). B
140 – Rule: It is not allowed to keep the face and hands open with the intention of making others fall into sin. AGKLS
In the event that it helps to commit a sin, it is not allowed. B
141 – Rule: Old women who do not have the hope of marrying - in addition to their face and hands, can also keep a bit of their hair, hands up to the elbows, and the legs up to the knees open, in the front of non-Mahram men. S
142 – Rule: It is not allowed for a woman to go to a place where she knows that non-Mahram men will look at her with the intention of lust. AGK
In itself, going (to such a place) is not a problem, but she must observe the proper clothing so as to not make others fall into sin. B
Covering of a Woman in the Presence of Other Women
143 – Rule: A woman must cover her private parts from other women however it is not wajib to cover the rest of the body in front of them. ABGKLMS
144 – Rule: If a woman knows that other women will look at her body, face or hands with the intention of lust, then it is wajib for her to cover these parts from them. AGKLM
Therefore: In bathrooms, swimming pools, fitness or sports clubs, and beauty parlors, if a woman sees that other women are looking at her with the intention of lust, the she must immediately cover her body from them.
145 – Rule: It is haram for a woman to reveal her body with the intention of wanting other women to fall into sin. AGKLMS
That amount of the body that is wajib to cover is that (same) amount that is haram to keep uncovered, even if others will not fall into a haram act; butd those places that are not wajib to cover, if it leads or helps to commit a sin, then it becomes wajib to cover them. B
146 – Rule: It is wajib for a woman to cover her private parts from other women, even if they will not look at them with the intention of lust, except in the case of necessity. ABGKLMS
Therefore: Just as has been mentioned in the previous section on ‘looking’, women are not permitted to show their private parts to a doctor, unless it reaches to the stage of necessity. Even in the matter of birth control, it is not allowed to expose one’s private parts in front of a doctor, and one must refrain from this, except in the case of a necessity. Also in this ruling, it does not make a difference if the doctor is a woman either.
Note: Women must be cautious in places such as public showers that their private parts are covered, and it is also not allowed to wear thin, see-thru clothing in which one’s private parts are not covered properly. In addition, to have x-rays taken (of certain areas), or a sonograph of the womb, or have certain devices inserted into the womb or other related things, if it necessitates the exposing of one’s private parts in front of others, then it is not allowed and one must refrain from it (unless it is in the case of necessity).
Covering of a Woman in the Presence of Children (Those who have reached the age of Mumayyiz or not)
147 – Rule: It is not wajib to cover any part of the body, even so far as the private parts, from a child (a girl or a Mahram or non-Mahram boy) who has not yet reached the age of Mumayyiz. ABGKLMST
148 – Rule: A woman must cover her private parts from a girl child who is Mumayyiz. ABGKLMS
149 – Rule: It is wajib for a woman to cover her private parts from a boy who is a Mumayyiz child and her Mahram. ABGKLMS
150 – Rule: In the event that the Mumayyiz child is a boy and a non-Mahram, then not only is it wajib for the women to cover their private parts from him, but according to Ihtiyat Wajib, she must also cover her entire body from him, with the exception of the face and hands. BKGS
According to Ihtiyat Mustahab, a woman should cover her body and hair from non-Baligh children who understands good and bad – meaning that he has reached to such a stage that his look would be with lust (meaning that he is Mumayyiz). However, it is not necessary for her to cover the face and hands. M
Clothing that is haram for Men and Women
1. Notorious Clothing
151 – Rule: According to Ihtiyat Wajib, it is not allowed for men or women to wear notorious clothing. This means whether it be the type of clothing, type of stitching, its style, or its color or a combination of any of these. The same rule applies to the way of wearing the clothing as well. AKLM
Rather, it is haram to wear notorious clothing. BG
In the event that it leads to disgrace or degradation (of a person), then it is haram to wear it. ST
152 – Question: What is meant by notorious clothing?
Answer 1: That clothing whose material, color, the way it is sewn, or the way it is worn, is not common for that person to wear. BKL
Answer 2: That clothing that has certain qualities or characteristics that attract the attention of the general public, causing one to stand out in a crowd. K
Note: First of al, anything that is considered as clothing or a covering can be considered under this ruling, therefore it includes clothing such as shoes, a hat, a shirt, a skirt, a head scarf (for women), a Maqne, socks, pants, a Mantou, etc… If any of these are such that they could be classified as notorious clothing, then they are included in this ruling.
Secondly, it does not make a difference if the clothing is considered as notorious clothing due to the kind or type (of clothing) or the color of it, for example, those types of clothing whose color is loud or repulsive, or the style of clothing which is common among the Punks, or the manner in which it is worn.
Notorious clothing is that clothing which does not suit one’s appearance nor fits his status. A
Note: These explanations of notorious clothing are the same as those given by Ayatullah Khumayni in answer one above. The meaning of notorious clothing, is clothing that is not the usual type that a certain person wears. Thus, if an older person puts on clothing that is the style for children, or a person puts on clothing that is not fitting for his position or status, then that type of clothing would be referred to as notorious clothing. Therefore, even if wearing a chador in foreign countries, or wearing clothing (specific) to one area in another area draws the attention of others, but if these types of clothing signify the status of that person, then it is not a problem.
That clothing which is made of a certain kind of fabric or its color or it has been stitched in such a way that it is not common for that person to wear it and could lead to degradation or make him stand out, is referred to as notorious clothing. G
The meaning of notorious clothing is that clothing which may lead one to being proud or by wearing it, that person wants to be known as an ascetic or one who has renounced all worldly pleasures. Whether it is by means of the type of fabric, color, or the way it was stitched. However, if in actuality a person’s intention is to wear simple clothing and he does not have the intent of showing off, then not only is it permitted, but rather it is a worthy action. M
Notorious clothing is that clothing which is made of a type of fabric or color or the way in which it has been stitched is not common for that person to wear and it is degrading or a disgrace (to the one who wants to wear it). ST
2. Clothing which is Specific to One Gender
153 – Rule: According to Ihtiyat Wajib, it is not allowed for women to wear clothing that is specific to men, and similarly, it is not allowed for men to wear clothing that is specific to women. KL
For a woman to wear clothing that is specific for a man and vice-versa is problematic. A
If a man wears clothing that is specific for a woman or a woman wears clothing that is specific for a man, then in the event that that clothing would be classified as ‘Notorious’, then it is haram (to wear such clothing); and in other than this scenario, according to Ihtiyat Wajib, one must refrain from wearing such clothing. B
It is haram for women to wear clothing that is specifically for men, and similarly, it is haram for men to wear clothing that is specifically for women. G
(Makarim): It is not a problem for a man to wear the clothing of a woman or for a woman to wear the clothing of a man, except in the event that it necessitates a haram action, in which it becomes not permissible. However, according to Ihtiyat Mustahab it is better that men and women do not wear clothing that is specific to the other gender.
If a man wears women’s clothing, or a woman wears men’s clothing, then in the event that that clothing becomes customary for them (they become known as one who wears that type of clothing), then according to Ihtiyat Wajib, it is haram to wear such clothing. S
154 – Rule: The meaning of clothing that is specific only to men is that clothing which is normally only worn by men; and specific clothing for women means that which is normally only worn by women. ABGKLMS
155 – Rule: The meaning of specific clothing includes all those things which are classified as clothing – whether it be something that it is visible when worn, for example a chador, skirt, scarf, or long socks – (where are not allowed) for men; or a coat and pants (suit-type), men’s shoes, etc… - (which are not common) for women. This also includes clothing which may not be visible – such as men wearing women’s under clothing or women wearing men’s under clothing. K
156 – Question: Further to what has been stated that according to Ihtiyat Wajib, men must not wear women’s clothing, and women must not wear men’s clothing, relating to this rule are some questions below:
1. Is this covering (of specific clothing) limited to being in public or even in (one’s) privacy is it problematic?
2. In the event that it is problematic, then would it also be a problem for men to wear women’s slippers if it is just inside the house?
1. There is no difference between being in public or private. AK
2. According to Ihtiyat Wajib, if the clothing is considered as specific (for one sex), then it is not permitted. AK
1. In privacy, it’s being haram is an area of question. B
1. In privacy, the condition of it being haram is not known. G
1. There is no problem. G
157 – Rule: According to Ihtiyat Wajib, it is haram to wear specific clothing, whether it is in privacy and there is no one else to see the person, or it is in public. Also, it does not make a difference in it being haram if the one who sees the person wearing the clothing is a man or woman, a Mahram or a non-Mahram. AK
In privacy, it’s being haram is an area of question. B
In the event that there is no one to see the person (in privacy), the condition of it being haram is not known. G
158 – Rule: It is not a problem to wear non-specific clothing, for example that clothing which the common people would regard as not being specific to men or women (such as pants, certain types of shirts, etc…). BGKLMST
Note: Just by a clothing being labeled “for women” or “for men”, does not make that clothing specific, rather, the usage of the clothing being only for men or women makes clothing that is specific (to that sex). As an example, the wearing of slippers in the house that the common people acknowledge to be worn by both men and women is not a problem, and thus either one of them can wear those slippers, even if they are referred to as women’s slippers or men’s slippers. However, if there is a pair of slippers that the common people acknowledge as only for women (such as slippers that were asked about in the previous question), then it is not allowed for men to wear them, even if it is only for a moment (such as to get something from the kitchen).
159 – Rule: It is not allowed, according to Ihtiyat Wajib, to wear specific clothing no matter what the reason is – whether it is for simply trying it on, playing or acting in the theatre, cinema, showing off or anything else. KL
It is a problematic area for a woman to wear clothing that is specific to men. A
It is haram for a man to wear clothing that is specifically for women and similarly for a woman to wear clothing that is specifically for men, however until the point that this is not regarded as notorious clothing, this being haram is an area to ponder upon. B
Question: Is it permitted for a woman who is acting in the theatre or in a play and is playing the role of a man, to wear the clothing of a man if she is performing in front of women?
Answer: As long as non-Mahram Men will not see her, it is not a problem. G
160 – Question: Are men allowed to use things of zinat that women usually wear – such as a ring, watch, bangle, belt, necklace, etc… keeping in mind that the wearing of clothing specific to women is not allowed for men?
Answer: One must refrain from wearing anything that goes against one’s character. A
Answer: It is haram for men and women to beautify themselves with that which is used as a beautifier for the opposite sex. B
Answer: It is not allowed for men to use any kind of beautification or clothing that is specific to women. G
Answer: If the man is considered to resemble a woman or the woman is considered to resemble a man, then it is not permitted. L
161 – Question: What is the ruling for a woman who cuts her hair short such that she resembles a man, and also what is the ruling for a man to grow his hair long such that he resembles a woman?
Answer: If it considered that the man resembles the woman or the woman resembles the man then it is not allowed. L
3. Arousing or Stimulating Clothing
162 – Rule: It is haram for a woman or a man to wear any type of clothing that the common people would consider as arousing or stimulating, or one that attracts the attention of non-Mahrams. ABGKL
It is problematic to wear clothing that can lead to degradation, loss of one’s self-respect or corruption. M
163 – Rule: Arousing or stimulating clothing can be due to its color, style, type of cloth, or any other thing. Thus, it is possible that a woman’s headscarf, mantou, maqnah or shoes are such that they attract the attention of non-Mahram Men and are stimulating. In these instances, it is not permissible to wear them. ABGKLM
Note: The meaning of arousing or stimulating is related to the type of clothing and not the person wearing it. Thus if according to the common people a certain type of clothing is considered as arousing, then it is not allowed to wear it, even if one or a few people would not be aroused or stimulated by it.
Therefore: Clothing such as certain types of gloves with lace, chador, a thin scarf with lace, things that hand (around a person’s neck) such as flowers, and other things of beautification such as gold stitching or lace stitching on the headscarf, chador or mantou, etc… or placing buttons on a specific part of the clothing, keeping the buttons of the clothing open even if underneath there may be clothing, etc… - all of these kinds of clothing, if they are considered as stimulating or arousing, or they attract the attention of others, then it is haram and one must refrain from wearing these (types of clothing).
164 – Question: Are men allowed to beautify their faces with make-up that women use? Also, are men allowed to pluck the hair under their eyebrows?
Answer: It is haram for a man and woman to beautify themselves with those things that are used by the opposite sex. B
Answer: It is problematic. G
Answer: If the man is considered to resemble a woman or a woman is considered to resemble a man, then it is not allowed. L
4. Usurped Clothing
165 – Rule: It is not allowed to wear clothing that has been usurped, and according to Islamic law, it is haram; and the Salat recited with this clothing will also be void. ABGKST
It is haram to wear usurped clothing, and according to Ihtiyat Wajib, Salat recited with this clothing will also be void. LM
166 – Rule: If a type of clothing is made or purchased from money that was usurped, then it has the same ruling as usurped clothing and thus, the wearing of them is not allowed. ABGKLMS
167 – Rule: Even if a part of the clothing is usurped, then the wearing of it is not allowed either, even if it is just a single stitch, a button, a zipper or the lining of the material. ABGKLMS
168 – Rule: It is not allowed for a person who has Khums pending on him/her to buy any clothing from that money on which Khums has not yet been paid, since it will be considered as usurped, and the wearing of it is not allowed; also the Salat recited in it is void. (Except those who have received the permission of the Islamic Ruler, or his representative.) ABGKLMST
5. Clothing Specific to the Non-Muslims
169 – Rule: It is haram to wear that clothing which only the non-Muslims make use of. GKL
In the event that it endorses the non-Muslims or makes them powerful, then it is not allowed. A
According to Ihtiyat, one must refrain from imitating the non-Muslims. B
Therefore: It is not permitted for a Muslim man or woman to wear clothing that is commonly worn by Punks, clergymen of the Church, Rabbis, the Hindus, or other groups of non-Muslims.
170 – Rule: There is no problem in wearing that clothing which is common to both Muslims and non-Muslims. BGKLMST
171 – Question: What is the view of Islam on the necktie?
Answer 1: The necktie is the practice of the Christian religion, which has unfortunately become widespread amongst the Muslims. G
Answer 2: The necktie is one of the symbols of the Christians, and it is incumbent on the Muslims to refrain from using it. G
Answer: The necktie is related to and is one of the symbols of the Christians, thus, it is better that the Muslims refrain from wearing it, even though it is no longer prevalent among the Muslims as being a symbol for the Christians. L
 In the following rulings, the spouse is an exception.
 The Chador is the type of ‘hijab’ that is commonly worn by Iranian women and consists of a large, usually black cloth wrapped around the body.
 A long overcoat type covering for women that is commonly worn in Iran.
 It should be noted that the meaning of Z¢nat refers to those decorations and beautification that a woman applies to herself, and not that which is natural. (Translator)
 Please note that the term Lib¡s al-Shuhrah has been translated here as Notorious Clothing for lack of a better term in English. Please refer to the list of definitions at the end of this book for a detailed explanation.