Are Muslim Men Permitted to Remove Back and Chest Hair?

05 June, 2022
Q As-salamu `alaykum. Is it permissible for a man to remove hair from the chest, back, and between the eyebrows?


Wa `alaykum As-Salamu wa Rahmatullahi wa Barakatuh

In the Name of Allah, Most Gracious, Most Merciful. 

All praise and thanks are due to Allah, and peace and blessings be upon His Messenger.

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In this fatwa:

  1. It is allowed for men to remove the hair on their chests and backs. However, it is advisable for them not to do it as it may fall under imitating women, which is forbidden in Islam.
  2. As for the hair between eyebrows, it is allowed for men, as well as women, to remove it as long as they don’t pluck the eyebrows themselves.

As for your question, Dr. Rifat Fawzi, Professor of Shari`ah at Cairo University, states:

There is no evidence from the Quran or the Sunnah for forbidding cutting short the hair from the chest and back. But the removal of hair from these parts may be considered a form of imitating women, which is forbidden according to the Hadith, “May Allah’s curse be inflicted on women imitating men and vice versa.” (Al-Bukhari)

As for women, it is permissible for them to remove hair from these parts because it causes them harm.

As for removing the hair from between the eyebrows, it is lawful, because it is not part of the eyebrows. But as for plucking the eyebrows, it is forbidden and not permissible in Islam according to the Hadith in which the Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) says, “May Allah’s curse be inflicted upon women who pluck their eyebrows, and women hired to do this.” (Muslim)

So, what is prohibited is an-nams, which denotes removing the hair of the eyebrows by plucking in order to make it thin. The Prophet (peace and blessings be upon him) is reported to have cursed both women who do the plucking and those who seek to have it done. (Abu Dawud)

 Almighty Allah knows best.

Editor’s note: This fatwa is from Ask the Scholar’s archive and was originally published at an earlier date.