Is Nail Polish Haram or Halal?

Is Nail Polish Haram or Halal?

Halal and haram are the two most commonly used words in Islam, which are related to permissible and non-permissible acts respectively. Islam has divided different activities that we carry out in our everyday lives under these two categories, and one of the confusing topics is whether wearing nail polish is halal or haram in Islam. 

Wearing nail polish is not haram, but you cannot offer prayers with it. It ultimately means that if you offer prayers wearing nail polish, Allah won’t accept it, and it will eventually be haram. 

There is a logical reason why you can’t perform prayers wearing nail polish, and we’ll explain everything in this article. Let’s begin. 

Why Can’t Muslims Wear Nail Polish While Offering Prayers? 

Muslims follow the ritual of offering prayers five times a day. It is called Salah (Salat) in Arabic. But before offering prayer or reading the Namaz, all Muslims must perform Wudu (ablution). Wudu is a partial purification process before offering prayers. 

As per the Wudu ritual, all Muslim men and women must wash their faces, feet, and hands before they sit for Namaz. The idea is that the purifying water should reach these body parts to cleanse you before you pray to Allah. If the water does not reach your body, Wudu is considered incomplete. 

nail polish haram

We all know that nail polish creates a thick layer or coat on the nails that is waterproof. 

Nail polish won’t allow the wudu water to touch your nails. Therefore, the purification process will be incomplete. This is why Islam does not allow wearing nail polish while offering prayers. 

Hence, if anybody wears nail polish and sits for Namaz, it will be a haram practice. Instead, Islamic preachers suggest wearing henna instead of nail polish as it does not create any preventive coat on the nails. 

But Muslim people won’t be able to wear nail polish because removing it each time they offer prayer is quite impractical. 

Moreover, Islam does not promote using anything for personal adornment or beautification by men. Muslim scholars think that if men use any such products, they imitate women. But for women, wearing nail polish is permissible as long as: 

  • They remove it before performing Wudu (partial purification) and Ghusl (full body ritual purification, which is mandatory before the performance of some rituals and completion of the menstrual cycle) 
  • Applying nail polish isn’t intended to attract men outside marriage. 
  • Nail polish does not contain any haram ingredients. 

There is no clear mention of removing nail polish before Wudu or Ghusl in the Quran, but a Hadith clearly indicates water should touch each part of the body for the Wudu to be completed. 

Here is the Hadith that talks about the incomplete Wudu or purification- 

It was narrated that Umar bin Khattab said- “The messenger of Allah saw a man performing ablution, and he missed a spot the size of a fingernail on his foot. He commanded him to repeat the ablution and his prayer, so he did.”

حَدَّثَنَا حَرْمَلَةُ بْنُ يَحْيَى، حَدَّثَنَا ابْنُ وَهْبٍ، ح وَحَدَّثَنَا ابْنُ حُمَيْدٍ، حَدَّثَنَا زَيْدُ بْنُ الْحُبَابِ، قَالاَ حَدَّثَنَا ابْنُ لَهِيعَةَ، عَنْ أَبِي الزُّبَيْرِ، عَنْ جَابِرٍ، عَنْ عُمَرَ بْنِ الْخَطَّابِ، قَالَ رَأَى رَسُولُ اللَّهِ ـ صلى الله عليه وسلم ـ رَجُلاً تَوَضَّأَ فَتَرَكَ مَوْضِعَ الظُّفْرِ عَلَى قَدَمِهِ فَأَمَرَهُ أَنْ يُعِيدَ الْوُضُوءَ وَالصَّلاَةَ ‏.‏ قَالَ فَرَجَعَ ‏


Final Words 

As seen through the Hadith, Allah does not approve of the Wudu if you even miss a tiny spot, and nail polish completely covers all the nails. Hence, it will be haram to perform Wudu or Ghusl wearing nail paint.

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