Dye a beard black

Q: My question is one that is frequently asked by many people, it is: What is permissible and Haram (prohibited) in relation to dyeing the beard black?


A: All praise be to Allah Alone, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger, and his family and Companions. It is permissible to dye the hair with henna (a plant that produces a reddish-orange dye) or any other substance that will give it a reddish or yellowish color, because of the Hadith that says, The Prophet (peace be upon him) used to dye (his hair) with Sufra (saffron). It is also related by Muslim that Abu Bakr applied henna and Katam (a plant from Yemen that produces a reddish-black dye) and that `Umar used henna. Additionally, the Prophet (peace be upon him) said, “The best things you can change this gray hair with are henna and Katam.” (Related by Imam Ahmad, Abu Dawud, Al-Nasa'y and Al-Tirmidhy, who classed it as Sahih [authentic]). The Prophet (peace be upon him) also said, “The Jews and the Christians do not dye (their gray hair), so do the opposite of what they do.” (Related by Al-Bukhari, Muslim, and the compilers of the Sunan (Abu Dawud, Ibn Majah, Al-Tirmidhy and Al-Nasa’y). It is not permissible to dye gray hair black, because when Abu Bakr came (Part No. 5; Page No. 168) to the Prophet (peace be upon him) with his father, Abu Quhafah, whose hair and beard looked as white as Thaghamah (a plant whose leaves and flowers are intensely white), the Messenger of Allah (peace be upon him) said to Abu Bakr, “Change this (gray hair) with something, but avoid black.” (Related by Muslim) May Allah grant us success. May peace and blessings be upon our Prophet Muhammad, his family, and Companions.

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