The Office of the Supreme Leader

Practical Laws of Islam

  • Rules of Taqlīd
  • Rules on Purity
  • Prayer
  • Fasting
  • Khums
  • Jihad
  • Enjoining the Good and Forbidding Evil
  • Ḥarām Gains
  • Chess and Gambling Instruments
  • Music and Ghinā’
  • Dancing
  • Clapping
  • Non-maḥrams’ Pictures and Films
  • Satellite Television Equipment
  • Theatre and Cinema
  • Painting and Sculpture
  • Magic, Conjuring, and Evocation of Spirits and Jinn
  • Hypnosis
  • Lottery
  • Bribery
  • Medical Issues
  • Teaching, Learning and Their Proprieties
  • Copyrights
  • Dealing with non-Muslims
  • Working for Oppressive States
  • Rules on Clothing and Conspicuous ones
  • Treating the West
  • Smoking and Narcotics
  • Shaving the Beard
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    Shaving the Beard


    Q1400. What is meant by jaws on which growing a beard is obligatory? Do they include the cheeks?
    A: The criterion is that the common view recognizes it as a beard.
    Q1401. What should the minimum and maximum length of a beard be?
    A: There is no definite measure. However, the criterion is based on what the common view recognizes as a beard. That said, it is disliked to let it grow longer than one’s own grasp.
    Q1402. What is the view on lengthening one’s moustache and shortening the beard?
    A: There is no harm in doing so in itself.
    Q1403. Some men leave the hair around the chin grow, i.e., goatee, and shave the rest of the beard. What is the view on such practice?
    A: The ruling on shaving part of the beard is the same as that passed on shaving the entire beard.
    Q1404. Is shaving the beard considered as sin?
    A: According to obligatory caution, shaving the beard is ḥarām. Therefore, rulings and consequences of a sinful act are applied to it as a matter of caution.
    Q1405. What is the view on shaving one’s moustache? Is it permissible to let it grow long?
    A: There is no objection to shaving the moustache, nor is there any objection to leaving it to grow long. However, to let it grow long in such a way that the hair comes into contact with food and drink while one is eating or drinking is disliked.
    Q1406. What is the view on an actor, who, due to the nature of his work, is required to be clean-shaven either with a blade or a machine?
    A: If shaving fits the label of beard shaving, it is, as a matter of caution, ḥarām. However, if his artistic work is regarded necessary for the Islamic society, there is no objection to his shaving his beard in a measure proportionate to the necessity of the work.
    Q1407. As a public relations officer in one of the companies which belongs to the Islamic Republic, I have to buy and present shaving tools to the guests to shave their beards with. What should I do?
    A: As a matter of caution, it is ḥarām to buy and give to others tools to be used for shaving beards unless necessity requires it.
    Q1408. What is the ruling in the matter of shaving one’s beard if growing it would lead to denigration?
    A: For a devout Muslim, growing a beard should not be a cause for feeling inferior or lowly. It is not, as a matter of caution, permissible to shave it unless growing it leads to putting oneself in harm or causes unbearable hardship.
    Q1409. Is it permissible to shave one’s beard if it proves an obstacle to one’s achieving a legitimate goal?
    A: The mukallaf must obey Allah’s injunctions, except in circumstances of facing unbearable hardship or noticeable harm.
    Q1410. Is it permissible to buy, sell, and produce shaving cream, which is mainly used for shaving the beard although it is used for other shaving purposes?
    A: Should it be acknowledged that this cream is used for lawful purposes other than that of shaving the beard, there is no objection to produce and sell it for this purpose.
    Q1411. What is meant by the phrase “It is ḥarām to shave the beard”? Is it that when the hair is fully-grown and one shaves it, or is it true of shaving the facial hair grown in part?
    A: Generally speaking, it is ḥarām, on basis of caution, to shave any part of the beard which is universally recognized as shaving a beard. However, there is no objection to shaving some of the hair which does not fit the label of shaving a beard.
    Q1412. Is the money the barber charges for shaving a beard ḥarām? Assuming that it is so and that this money is mixed with ḥalāl money, is it incumbent on the person concerned to pay khums on it twice?
    A: As per caution, it is ḥarām to receive any money for shaving a beard. If the amount of illicit money is known, it should be returned to its original owner — if he is known — or a settlement should be reached with him. If the owner is not known — even as a person among a small group of people — it is incumbent on recipient to give it to the poor in charity. If the amount of ḥarām money is not known but the owner is, it is obligatory on the person to reach a settlement, in any way possible, with the original owner.
    Should neither the amount nor the owner be known, he has to purify his money from what is ḥarām by paying the khums. One should pay the khums of the left over money if it was an income and is not spent up to the end of the khums year for the yearly expenses.
    Q1413. Sometimes people come to me to fix their shaving machines. Since shaving the beard is ḥarām, is it permissible for me to repair such machines?
    A: Since this machine can be used for purposes other than shaving a beard, there is no harm in repairing it and getting paid for the work provided that it is not intended to be used for shaving the beard.
    Q1414. Is it ḥarām to shave the hair of the cheeks or remove it in any other way, i.e., by using a string or tweezers?
    A: It is not ḥarām to remove the hair growing on the cheeks, even by way of shaving.
  • Attending Gatherings of Debauchery
  • Writing Supplications and Istikhārah
  • Religious Events
  • Hoarding and Extravagance
  • Buying and Selling
  • Miscellaneous Issues in Business
  • Rules Concerning Ribā
  • Right of Pre-emption
  • Hiring, Renting, and Lease
  • Surety
  • Pawning and Mortgaging
  • Partnership
  • Presents and Gifts
  • Debt and Loan
  • Ṣulḥ
  • Power of Attorney
  • Mustaḥabb Alms
  • Deposits and Loaned Properties
  • Leaving a Will
  • Usurpation
  • Placement under Guardianship and Signs of Maturity
  • Silent Partnership
  • Banking
  • State Property
  • Endowments
  • Rules Concerning Graveyards
  • Glossary
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