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Beauty Tips from Imam Ibn Taymiyyah


Millions of pounds are spent every year by people on beauty products throughout the world with the hope to enhance their beauty or erase some of the unwanted features the may have on their face and other parts of the body. The pressure to spend on beauty products in this age is higher than ever. Traditionally it was the women folks who spend hours looking for that ‘right’ life changing beauty product (but in reality none of them really does the job), however, now, the idea of the “metrosexual” male has gained global approval, with the majority of consumers worldwide agreeing that it is acceptable for men to spend time and money to enhance their appearance. Around 78% of consumers worldwide agree that it is “ok” for men to spend time and money on their appearance. This is quite visible even in the East end of London.

Although purchasing beauty products is allowed, as Muslims we are taught that beauty comes from within, literally! Our scholars have mentioned in their writings that when a person commits a sin against Allāh and that person is persistent and adamant upon sin his/her face darkens. The opposite is also true, when a person observes the Taqwa of Allāh and perseveres in Allāh’s path his/her face is illuminated with the light of īmān (faith). So although the Maybelline may try and make people believe that they are pretty etc while they commit sins, in reality, those who are upon the truth and observe the Taqwa of Allāh their face is radiant with the light of īmān. It is only the believers who appreciate and discern this light.

See below a comment by Shaykh Ibn Taymiyyah on this issue. He رحمه الله may not be giving direct beauty tips to people, especially our young brothers and sisters, however, I believe this is the best and most healthy beauty advice one can give.

Imām Ibn Taymiyyah رحمه الله wrote:

“The person who is righteous and honest, his honesty is manifest from the radiance on his face, and his honesty can be known from the glow that is on his face, likewise the (opposite for the) sinful one and the liar. The older a person gets, the more this sign becomes apparent. Thus a person as a child would have a bright face, however if he becomes a sinful person, adamant on committing sins, at the older stages in his life, an ugly face would manifest that which he used to internalize, and the opposite is also true.

It has been narrated that Ibn Abbas رضي الله عنه said,

`Indeed righteousness illuminates the heart, radiates the face, strengthens the body, increases provision, and produces a love in the hearts of the creation for that person. Whereas sinfulness darkens the heart, greys the face, weakens the body, and produces hatred in the hearts of the creation for that person.’

It is possible that a person may not intentionally lie; he may even be a person who makes great effort in ibadah (worship) and has zuhd (abstains from pleasures of this life that are lawful). However he has false, incorrect `aqidah regarding either Allāh, His deen or His Messenger ﷺ or His righteous servants. And what is on the inside affects what is on the outside. Thus, this false, incorrect `aqidah (belief and incorrect practices) that he thought was true and correct reflects on his face, and his face would be dark in accordance with the level of falsehood he possesses.

As it has been narrated that `Uthman ibn Affan رضي الله عنه said,

`No one ever hides evil within themselves except that Allāh makes it manifest from his facial outlook and the statements his tongues utters.’

Hence some of the salaf used to say,

`If a person of innovation were to dye his beard every day, the dye of innovation would remain on his face.’

On the Day of Judgment this would be very clear as Allāh says,

“And on the Day of Resurrection you will see those who lied against Allāh their faces will be black. Is there not in Hell an abode for the arrogant ones?” (Surah Zumar, 39:60)

He also said:

“On the Day when some faces will become white and some faces will become black; as for those whose faces will become dark (to them will be said): “Did you reject Faith after accepting it? Then taste the torment for rejecting Faith.” (Surah ‘Ali Imran, 3:106)

Ibn Abbas and others have said regarding this verse,

`The bright faces will be ahlus-sunnah, and dark faces will be the people of bid’ah and division.’`Al-Jawab As-Sahih’ (Vol.4, pg. 306-307)

So you want to get that look or develop those biceps and triceps? Try and visit the Taqwa shop more often than the Body Shop!

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