Is Makeup Haram?

Is Makeup Haram? - Mersi Cosmetics


Makeup is a very significant part of most women's beauty routines. It plays a direct impact on how they feel and act. It is a quintessential part of their beauty routine and helps people feel beautiful and put together in a short time. This is why makeup has been a big part of every culture and wasn't just allocated to women in old times.

Nowadays, with advancements in every facet of life, we also see more research on makeup products and whether their use is suitable for our skin. In addition, Muslim consumers are a significant part of the fashion industry and want to know if makeup is haram or not. 

This article sums up everything you need to know to get the answer to this question. Let’s read below to get more valuable insights!

What Makes Makeup Haram?

Before answering the primary question, it is essential to understand what are the elements that can make makeup products haram. It will help you decide if makeup is haram or not.  The following are the elements that can make makeup products haram or prohibited for Muslims. 


Makeup used to contain high levels of lead during the 16th century. One of the most famous people of that time, Queen Elizabeth-I, used makeup containing lead to cover up her scars from smallpox.

The use of lead was contained and minimized in makeup, and now you can find only a non-toxic amount of lead in our makeup products today. However, there are several other toxic products widely used in makeup products nowadays. The toxicity of makeup makes it haram for Muslim consumers. 

Prohibited Ingredients

In Islam, certain substances, such as alcohol and products derived from pigs, are deemed haram, meaning not permissible for use by Muslims. If a makeup product contains these ingredients, it is considered haram. 

Permanent Impact

Any makeup product leading to a permanent alteration in your features, except for medical reasons, is prohibited. If a makeup product, such as lipstick, mascara, or liner, leads to a permanent impact on your body, you must avoid it as it is haram. 

Tattooing is an example of permanent alteration in your skin for cosmetic reasons. It includes lip tattooing and micro-needling also.  Makeup products with temporary impact are allowed and not considered haram as long as they meet other conditions as well.

Harmful for Skin

Harming yourself or your skin is not allowed in Islam. If a makeup product or procedure involves something that can harm your skin, it is haram. For instance, using makeup products with toxic chemicals and risking your skin’s health for cosmetic reasons. 

Commonly Found Haram Ingredients in Makeup

The traditional makeup products are filled with tons of toxic and harsh chemicals and ingredients. It makes them haram. The following are some of those ingredients. 


One of the most common ingredients in cosmetics is Carmine. It is represented as E-120, cochineal, and crimson lake. It is a red pigment obtained from crushed beetles (cochineal). You can find it in most lipsticks and nail paints. 


If you look at the composition of fairness creams, you may find collagen written there. Avoid it since it is obtained from pork which is prohibited in Islam. 


An important component of cosmetics is glycerin. It is usually obtained from animals, whereas plant-based options are also available. Animal-based glycerin is prohibited, and plant-based alternatives are fine to use. 

Oleic Acid

Some oils, such as oleic acid, stearic acid, and linoleic acid, are used in makeup. If they are sourced from animals, they are haram. Plant-based oleic acid is permissible as long as it is not harming your skin.  

Some other toxic ingredients include chemicals like formaldehyde, paraben, mercury, phthalates, triclosan, and hydroquinone. 

The Alternatives

The makeup found nowadays has one or the other element that makes it haram or at least puts it in the gray area. Thankfully, there are a number of alternatives to deal with the issues in traditional makeup products. 

Have a look at this list. 

Clean Beauty

Clean beauty is a term used to describe toxic-free makeup. It refers to cosmetics and skin care products that are free from harmful chemicals. Clean beauty products are very open and honest about the ingredients that go into their products. 

Knowing the ingredients in your makeup products is necessary as there are many harmful chemicals found in some makeup products, some of which are known carcinogens that can cause cancer. The clean beauty movement is about being aware of the ingredients of makeup products you use daily.

It encourages people to ask questions about the need for carcinogenic chemicals in makeup products. Navigating the world of clean makeup can be difficult since the FDA doesn't have a criterion that deems a brand its clean beauty title, due to which many brands have tried to jump on the clean beauty bandwagon without truly using cleaner ingredients. 

Consumers of today have to be more vigilant than ever and never buy something based on its packaging and always take a look at the ingredient list.

Cruelty-Free Makeup

Cruelty-free makeup means that your makeup wasn't tested on animals before being sold to you to check if it was toxic for humans. The term always makes us do a double take and think hard about what kind of toxins are present in non-cruelty-free makeup that they have to test its toxicity before giving it to humans.

This is alarming not just because it is animal cruelty but also raises questions about the quality of the makeup we wear on our faces for upwards of 12 hours daily. Cruelty-free makeup is usually free of many sulfates and synthetic dyes, leading you to be less prone to breakouts or inflammation.

Vegan Makeup

Being vegan is a lifestyle where people stop using any animal-based products in their lives, ranging from food to makeup to toiletries. Vegan makeup products, in turn, only contain plant-based products which are not only beneficial for the individual but also better for the environment.

Vegan products mostly use natural ingredients, which means they help limit the potentially toxic chemicals to reach the water and soil of the earth through our drains. Makeup is washed off at the end of the day, and we don't pay mind to what it does to our planet. Vegan products help combat that since they have fewer synthetic chemicals than standard makeup products.

Whether or not you’re vegan, choosing vegan cosmetics is better for the environment and likely better for your skin, in addition to being better for animals.

Your skin also benefits from vegan makeup products since they have a simpler ingredient list and aren't filled with toxic carcinogens, which you apply daily to your skin to make yourself look better. 

This gets you stuck in a never-ending cycle where you can't stop using makeup as your skin is never in its optimal state, and maybe that's what makeup companies want to retain customers.

Halal Makeup Products

Halal makeup products are manufactured abiding by Islamic law. ISWA Halal Certification Department describes halal makeup products as; “Products that are free of alcohol, animals that are forbidden to Muslims and/or are not slaughtered according to Shariah law, and anything that is defined as "najis" (which means "filth" or "unclean," and includes things like pork and blood).”

To get the Halal Certification, the manufacturing process of every beauty item is analyzed to measure if it abides by Islamic Law. There are many halal makeup brands on the market today, which can be used by anyone, and they guarantee an uncontaminated manufacturing process as well as being ethically sourced.

Using makeup which isn't permissible in Islam, means you cannot pray in it, and many women in the past had to take off their makeup before they prayed, which becomes cumbersome as Muslims have to pray 5 times daily.

Nowadays, you can easily find halal alternatives to almost all makeup products. It includes halal nail polish, lipstick, eye shadow, mascara, foundation, blush, and a wide range of other makeup products. 

Mineral Makeup

A common type of halal makeup is mineral makeup. It is made from naturally sourced and crushed minerals. They are free from animal products, toxic chemicals, and harsh ingredients. There are no ingredients that may damage your skin. 

The minerals in the makeup work like skin-care products and help you get flawless skin. 

Is Halal and Vegan Makeup the Same?

No, they are not the same. Many people usually use the terms vegan and halal makeup interchangeably, but it is not right. Vegan makeup is makeup that is sourced purely from plants. It may contain alcohol or may be tested on animals and, therefore, not cruelty-free. 

Halal makeup, on the other hand, is vegan, cruelty-free, as well as alcohol-free. In other words, all vegan makeup products are not halal, but all halal makeup is vegan. 

Tips to Choose Halal Beauty Products

Halal beauty products are abundant in the market, and it makes it challenging to choose the right one for yourself. Here are some practical tips for choosing clean and safe halal makeup. 

  • Always opt for vegan and cruelty-free makeup products. 
  • Check the ingredients by yourself, even if the packaging says that it is halal. 
  • Do not trust verbal claims and go for halal-certified products only. 
  • The most effective tip is to buy from a reliable halal-certified brand. A brand gets halal certification when the relevant authority ensures that its products are halal. 

Once you get your favorite halal makeup products, you can use them as you like. Make sure to prepare your skin before applying makeup and cleansing it afterwards. This protects your skin from common skin problems and early aging. 

Include halal skincare products in your skincare routine for better results. They offer additional benefits by keeping your skin healthy and preparing it well for flawless makeup. 

So, Is Makeup Haram?

The question then becomes, is makeup haram or not permissible in Islam? Islam promotes self-grooming and encourages women to dress up and embrace their femininity, be it by using henna, doing their hair, or using makeup.

Using beauty products is appreciated in Islam. However, it is considered haram if you intend to attract someone with your makeup. Primarily, women wear makeup for personal reasons, as it helps them feel more confident and put together. It is considered halal if makeup is free from any haram ingredients and is not used to attract a non-mahram. 

It is not considered haram if the cosmetic application is temporary, as permanently altering your body is not permissible in Islam. All in all, makeup is allowed for Muslim women if their intentions are pure and it doesn't contain any haram products.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is makeup halal?

Yes, makeup can be halal if it is sourced and manufactured the right way. This means that it does not contain any forbidden or haram ingredients. Many halal makeup items are available in the market, including halal nail polish, lipstick, deodorant, mascara, and primer. 

Is nail polish halal?

Not all nail polishes are halal. Only vegan, cruelty-free, and breathable nail polishes are halal. Halal nail polish is free from prohibited ingredients and is wudu-friendly. 

Can I do wudu with makeup on?

Yes, you can do wudu with makeup on if your makeup does not have any film-forming ingredients. However, the idea behind ablution is to cleanse your body, and when you wash your face, your makeup is removed. So it is better to remove the makeup first and then perform ablution or wudu. 

How to check if a makeup product is a haram?

You must check the ingredients of a product to verify if it is haram or not. It must not contain any prohibited or toxic ingredients. In addition, it must be cruelty-free and manufactured according to Islamic principles. 

Is it ok to use alcohol-based makeup?

No, alcohol is prohibited in Islam and therefore, it is not ok to use alcohol-based makeup. However, if the alcohol is synthetic and sourced from alternative sources other than the prohibited ones, it is permissible. 

Is halal makeup skin-friendly?

Yes, halal makeup is skin-friendly because it is free from toxic ingredients. Halal makeup only contains ingredients that are nourishing and useful for the skin and prevent damaging it. 

Can I sleep with halal makeup on?

Whether you apply halal or traditional makeup, it is vital to remove it before going to bed. You must cleanse your face to remove any residual makeup in your skin pores. Moisturize your face, and then go to bed with no makeup on. 

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