Females who tie their hair up high

Question and Answer:

Q. Is it mentioned in any Hadith that females who tie their hair high up beneath their scarves will be the dwellers of jahanam since their heads resemble a camel’s hump?  Is this reference to a bun?


A. The Hadith in question is recorded in Sahih Muslim

Sayyiduna Abu Hurayrah (Radiyallahu Anhu) narrates that Rasulullah (Sallallahu Alaihi Wasallam) said: “There are two groups of people who will be entrants of Hell (Jahannum) but I have not seen them: One group of people will be those who carry whips that resemble the tails of cows and lash others with them. The other group will be those women who are clothed but yet are naked, they encourage others to violate the commands of Allah (by their provocative appearance), and they themselves violate the commands of Allah (by dressing in a shameless manner). Their heads are shaped like the humps of camels (by means of doing up their hair and gathering all the hair on the head). They will not enter Jannah nor will they smell its fragrance whereas the fragrance of Jannah can be smelt from a great distance”

The words of the Hadith “women who are clothed but yet naked” refer to those women who wear clothing that does not fulfill the requirements of “covering” in the Shari’ah. Either the clothing they wear is revealing due to the fabric being too thin, or the garment is tight-fitting, thus revealing the shape of the body. If the dress, pants or even cloak is tight to the extent that the contours and shape of the body is revealed, such a woman will be included in the warning sounded in this hadith. Likewise if the garment is thick but does not fully cover the body, as is the case in V-necks, slits, short-sleeves or sleeves that do not cover up to the wrists, etc., such garments will also fall within the warning of the hadith.

As for the hair, the prohibition is to gather the hair on top of the head. This makes the head look bigger and resembles the shape of the camel’s hump. A bun is generally tied at the nape. This is not referred to in the hadith. Instead, if a woman ties her hair in a bun at the back of her head in order to ensure that the hair does not become exposed beneath their scarf, this is preferable.

Some commentators have said that the hadith also refers to women who keep their head raised in the presence of non-mahram males, i.e. they do not lower their gazes. Such women will not smell the fragrance of Jannah.

(Sahih Muslim, Hadith #: 2128, & Sharh Muslim by Nawawi, Vol: 17, Pg: 190, Ihya’at Turath)

And Allah Knows Best

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