Shaving beard to get job
Fatwa No: 324175

  • Fatwa Date:12-5-2016 - Sha'baan 5, 1437
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Dear brother, I am an electrical engineer by profession, and I work for a consulting firm that provides engineering to oil and gas companies. In order to do that, we have to visit oil and gas sites and collect data. For oil and gas sites, the law orders to shave off the beard so that the gas mask can fit on the face without suffering any leaks (the beard hair provides gaps for H2S gas to enter the mask and kill the person). In April, 2014, I changed and became a practicing Muslim as I was non-practicing before. I stopped shaving off my beard in order to follow the Sunnah. In 2015, praise be to Allaah, I went to Hajj, the day I came back, I got an email informing me that I had lost my job. I took it as my test from Allaah, as Allaah said that He is going to test us with the loss in our assets, in our belongings, in our children and in our health. For the last three weeks, I started driving a taxi, but I did not like it at all. That business is at night, and we only carry drunk people and junky prostitutes maybe. When we do not like anything, it is very difficult to hide our feelings. So I lost my taxi licence because the company said that my clients do not rate me a good driver. Two weeks ago, I was interviewed by a consulting company for an engineering job, and they clearly mentioned that I have to shave off my beard and have to go to sites. I did not say yes, so they refused me and hired someone else. Last week, I was hired by another consulting firm, and today (Feb 10, 2016) was my first day. However, I was asked to shave off my beard and go to sites. One of my Muslim friends said that I am making it difficult for myself as the beard is Sunnah and not fard. If I do not shave, I may lose my new job. What is your advice in this situation according to our religion? Can I shave off my beard without losing my religion? I know that in normal situations one is not allowed to shave off the beard. Please advise me with the best possible solution so that I do not stray from the true path!


All perfect praise be to Allaah, The Lord of the worlds. I testify that there is none worthy of worship except Allaah and that Muhammad, sallallaahu ʻalayhi wa sallam, is His slave and Messenger. 

We would like to congratulate you for the blessing of becoming a practicing Muslim and your keenness to adhere to the sharee'ah provisions and earn the pleasure of Allaah. May Allaah generously reward you for that. We implore Him to guide you to what pleases Him and to bless you with happiness in this worldly life and the Hereafter.

The texts of the Prophetic Sunnah indicate the obligation of growing the beard and the prohibition of shaving it except in case of a necessity, as we previously explained in fataawa 84474 and 82143. Hence, it is impermissible for you to shave your beard merely to get a job. Verily, whoever fears Allaah and relies on Him as due, He will facilitate his affairs and suffice him; Allaah, The Exalted, says (what means): {...And whoever fears Allaah - He will make for him a way out and will provide for him from where he does not expect. And whoever relies upon Allaah - then He is sufficient for him...} [Quran 65:2-3] You should be confident that Allaah will compensate you with a better thing in the place of anything that you give up for His sake. The Prophet, sallallaahu ʻalayhi wa sallam, said, “You will not give up something for the sake of Allaah but that Allaah will substitute it with something better than it.” [Ahmad] The land of Allaah is vast. If you cannot find a job in one country, then look for work in another country. Needless to say, living in non-Muslim countries may cause the Muslim much difficulty, so if you can migrate to a Muslim country, then do so.

Lastly, we would like to emphasize that the scholars defined the 'necessity' that entails deeming lawful what is originally unlawful as 'what the person believes would most likely lead to his destruction or bring about hardship beyond his ability to endure'. Please, refer to fatwa 88254.

Allaah knows best.

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