In more recent years, we have seen body piercing and modification becoming more mainstream as one of the most common attractive trends when it comes to altering our bodies.
This is why, it has become ever more important for those who practice Islam to know and understand their rights to their body.
This is when we turn to the Quran. The Quran teaches us that the human body is a gift we are given by Allan (Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala).
While it is a gift, we must make use of this body within the guidelines of its true owner, which, of course, is Allah.
Allah has made many guidelines about what is Halal and permissible regarding the uses of our bodies, and what is Haram, and is therefore forbidden for Muslims.
While there are many guidelines about many things for our bodies, among them are guidelines to protect your body from any unnecessary alterations, which does include any punctures that are made in your body, including piercings.
There are only a few exceptions to this rule of body altercation. One of these exceptions would be if you needed to have surgery for a medical reason.
Although this does and can lead to body alterations, it is permissible as it is necessary for survival.
Therefore, with all this reasoning in place, bodily piercings, especially in these modern times, as piercings become more commonplace, has become a hot topic for debate, and discussions on whether this bodily alteration is a necessity in Islam has become something of a debate among Muslims.
Piercings That Are Allowed In Islam
There are some unique rulings on piercings in Islam, and different piercings are considered haram and halal.
There are a lot of things to consider in this topic, so let us look over the different body areas that could be pierced and find out whether or not they are halal or haram.
Scholars have researched much on this topic, and they have come to the conclusion that when it comes to ear piercings they are allowed for women, and women only.
This has been found as truth through the studies of Sunnah and Shariah, which described women from the time of the Prophet (salAllahu Alayhi wa salaam) as having their nose and their ears pierced.
In fact, they would often wear the jewelry which is common among most women today.
Allah describes these women in the Qur’an as being a creature naturally brought up on adornment. In the Qur’an, the Almighty states.
“A creature who is brought up in adornments (wearing silk and gold ornaments, i.e. women), and in dispute cannot make herself clear?” [Qur’an 43: 18].
Scholars have gone back to this quote, and together unanimously agreed that it is permissible for women to use all kinds of gold and silver adornments such as necklaces, rings, bracelets, amulets, anklets, and all that they like to wear, so long as it does not reach a degree of extravagance, or in a way that would intimidate men.
Allah granted this privilege to women, as jewelry is seen as being a customary form of adornment for women. Allah says that women are allowed the privilege of beautification, of which men are not.
Thus, with this permission that is granted from Allah that grants women, and women only, the privilege of beautification, scholars have concluded that despite how piercings are altering the body, and do cause pain, which is considered to be Haram, earrings are permissible.
Although they would typically be haram, they are allowed due to the beautification factor, and the reference to adornments in the Qur’an.
Also, it is said that it is best to give piercings to baby girls, as this is the age at which they will have the speediest recovery and the least pain.
Although, piercers tend to advise away from the piercings of a baby’s ears, and so it is best decided oneself should ear piercings be something you are considering.
Of course, you can also avoid the real pain of piercings by using alternatives.
Magnetic piercings and clip-on piercings are available, and both of these alternatives are permitted for women to use in Islam.
Another type of piercing that is up for debate in Islam is nose piercings.
The nose is more heavily debated than the ears, however, a majority of Islamic scholars agree that not nose and ears are permissible in Islam.
Studies show that women from the time of the Prophet did indeed actually wear nose rings, as this was custom for women in this time.
This is a tradition that has continued on, particularly in the Middle East and the South Asian regions.
Scholars also state that if the nose ring is something which women adorn themselves, as is the case in some countries, then it is much like piercing the ears in the way that it is permissible.
What this means is, that if this is the cultural look for women in your region, then it is also permissible for you as well.
Aside from traditional nose and ear piercings, it has been discovered by some scholar in Islam that some body piercings are haram. They concluded that some piercings are indeed forbidden in Islam.
To back up this, we note that Allah Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala states in the Holy Qur’an: “And Satan made their actions appear to them as beautiful and attractive.
Thus, he prevented them from the (right) path, hence they are not receiving guidance.”
In this, we are seeing the description of how Shaytaan will typically guide people off of the right path by making them believe that it is attractive to alter one’s body.
This reflects in our modern society, in which many Muslims have body piercings that are false desires and are against Allah’s will.
There are many other body parts that have become fashionable to pierce in mainstream society, these include but are not restricted to; nose, belly button, tongue, lips, eyebrows, clitoris, penis, and vaginal lips.
Belly Button Piercings And Piercings On The Privates
Since we mentioned it, we need to cover this. We should note that if having a piercing does involve uncovering the ‘awrah and having a stranger or non-mahram, male or female, look at it, which let’s be honest, is bound to happen, as all piercings need to be done by a professional, then this is without a doubt a haram action.
The act of uncovering in this way is evil. And, the evil of uncovering the ‘awrah is greater than any benefit in wearing adornments, because uncovering the ‘awrah is one of the things that is completely forbidden in the Islamic faith.
Therefore, uncovering in front of a stranger leads to the transgression of human dignity, and this temptation to commit sin is much more serious than achieving the purpose of adornment, which can be achieved by simply wearing earrings.
This means that getting any of your ‘private parts’ pierced (this includes, nipples, any of the vaginal region, or the penis), and getting your stomach pierced is forbidden for the reason that you are never supposed to reveal your private areas to non-mahrams, or to strangers.
Even more so, this rule goes beyond just this reasoning. Wearing an adornment in such a place can also be seen as an imitation of a kuffar or an immoral, or evil person.
An example of this would be that if wearing an adornment in the belly button, or in the private parts is only known among immoral women, evildoers, and kuffar in your region, then it is simply not permissible to adopt this custom, as it is imitation then, and intimidating evildoers which is simply not allowed.
Tongue/ Lip Piercings
Another piercing that is forbidden in Islam is the lips and the tongue. This, however, is not for the same reasons as the aforementioned haram piercings.
Piercings on the tongue are forbidden due to the harmful effects they cause to the human body, remember your body is a gift from Allah.
Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala) ruled that if the piercing will have any adverse effect on one’s health, be it immediately or in the future, then this potential for harm makes it haram, and it is not permissible to have this piercing on any body part.
With these piercings, this applies. Studies show that tongue piercings can cause the spread of cancer in the tongue, gum disease, and can also cause a loss of teeth among women, and therefore, in Islam it is not permissible to do it.
Lip piercing also has negative health effects too, the most common one being an infection.
All of the previously stated piercings are also immoral as they imitate that of a kafir, or an immoral woman.
But for lips and tongue piercings, the potential for adverse health problems are also in play here and make it unacceptable.
Which Side Of The Nose Should Women Pierce In Islam?
It is not a secret that many people associate Muslim women with having nose piercings. However, the practice of having nose piercings is not one that is religious, instead, it is actually a cultural practice.
Nose piercings are accompanied by a long cultural history, one which spans several thousand years.
This is especially true in and around the Indian Subcontinent, which includes India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and so on.
In these mentioned countries’ customary cultural practices, a nose piercing actually symbolizes female fertility and sexual health.
Therefore, although there are a plethora of interpretations of culture and tradition, the most prominent and influential of cultures often practice piercing the left side of the nose.
This came to be as scientists discovered that the roof of the nasal cavity has many nerve endings, and the outside left part of the nose is associated with the female reproductive organs.
This means that in these cultures, piercing the left side of the nose is believed to strengthen a woman’s womb and suppress the pains associated with menstruation and childbirth.
Are Piercings Haram For Men?
In Islam, there are many things that are permissible for women, but for men are instead forbidden, one of these things is piercings.
For boys and men of all ages, it is Haram to get any type of piercing unless it is somehow for a medical reason.
This is only so, as women are given permission to do so from Allah (Subhanahu Wa Ta’ala) for ornament and beautification, something of which he has not offered to males.
Another thing that is allowed for women but not men is silks. While women are allowed to wear silks, gold, and silver jewelry, the only form of jewelry that men are allowed to wear is a silver ring.
The reason for this is that men are not allowed to adorn themselves with jewelry as it is seen as an imitation of women, and this is not permissible in the eyes of Allah.
This was narrated from the Ibn ‘Abbas (may Allah be pleased with him) that the Prophet (blessings and peace of Allah be upon him) cursed effeminate men as well as women who imitate men.
This is true, as he actually states to “expel them from your houses”. Allah has told us that it is vital to remember that in Islam, men and women have different roles, and therefore, men are not given the same right as women to pierce their bodies.
Are Helix Piercings Haram?
You might wonder if Helix piercings are Haram. A Helix piercing is a piercing in the cartilage of the ear, rather than the lobes. As this piercing is in the ear, yes, it is permissible to have a Helix piercing.
This includes any piercing made to the upper cartilage of the ear. One must keep in mind, however, that a woman can not display her beauty except to her mahram.
Is It Permissible To Have Multiple Piercings On A Female’s Ear?
Some women may wonder if it is okay to have multiple piercings on their ears. Such as a standard set of lobe piercings and perhaps helix or cartilage piercings, even though the Sahabiyaat did not have these.
Multiple piercings are okay, as long as they do not entail bodily or medical harm, they do not entail any specific emulation with nonbelievers, and they are not done because of custom or belief against the dictates of Shariah.
A female can pierce her ear on the lobe, helix, tragus, or cartilage.
Are Septum Piercings Haram?
Septum piercing comes under the same ruling as nose piercings, however, like earrings and nose piercings in general, should the septum piercing be done as an emulation of fussaq, it is impermissible.