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Why has black hair dye been singled out? I find it confusing because I read in a fatwa that people should not dye their gray hair black to deceive people.

That is really confusing because it is possible for a blonde person to deceive others by dyeing his/her gray hair blonde, it is possible for a brunette to deceive people by dyeing his/her gray hair brunette, and it is possible for a black haired person to deceive people by dyeing his/her gray hair black, blonde, brunette, blue, yellow, red etc etc.

So my question is, why has black been singled out as the only dye not to be used? Before people start saying that you shouldn't use any dye to deceive people of your age, yes I understand that, but that doesn't explain why black has been singled out.

And before people ask, no I don't have black hair.

Here are a few fatwas about black hair dye:
http://islamqa.info/en/ref/82103
http://islamqa.info/en/ref/83639
I can post many many many more links, but I will leave it at 2 for now.

And here is a fatwa extract which includes a hadith:

Secondly: changing grey hair by dyeing it black is haraam. This is the opinion of the majority of scholars, who forbid it completely, because of the hadeeth of the Messenger (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him), when he saw Abu Quhaafah. Jaabir said: the Messenger of Allaah (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him_ said, when he saw his head looking as white as the thaghaamah plant, “Change this…” (Narrated by Muslim, 2102).

And the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allaah be upon him) said: There are people who dye their hair black like the crops of pigeons; they will never smell the fragrance of Paradise.” (Narrated by Abu Dawood, 4212; al-Nasaa’i, 5075).

Source of extract: http://islamqa.info/en/ref/7227

  • Please edit your question and add some references (the told fatwa for example) – cyberhicham Feb 1 '13 at 14:13
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    It might just be forbidden with intent to deceive. Most people during the Prophet's time were likely black-haired, hence the prohibition on black dye despite the reasoning given. The fatwas you've linked also mentions conflicting opinions on the matter. – Muz Aug 27 '13 at 7:12
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I do not know about the part of deceiving people by dying your hair, but it is ok to dye your hair because the Prophet (Peace and Blessings be upon him) said:

إن اليهود والنصارى لا يصبغون، فخالفوهم

Jews and Christians do not dye their hair, so act differently from them

Also:

Abu Qubafa was led (to the andience of the Holy Prophet) on the day of the Conquest of Mecca and his head and beard were white like hyssop, whereupon Allah's Messenger (may peace be upon him) said: Change it with something but avoid black

Furthermore scholars have differed as to it's ruling, It has been said it is haram, others like the Malikiyah said it is Makrooh. But Annawawi said that the ruling as to it being Haram is the correct ruling. For the Prophet said:

يَكُونُ قَوْمٌ يَخْضِبُونَ فِي آخِرِ الزَّمَانِ بِالسَّوَادِ كَحَوَاصِلِ الْحَمَامِ لاَ يَرِيحُونَ رَائِحَةَ الْجَنَّةِ

At the end of time there will be people who will use this black dye like the crops of doves who will not experience the fragrance of Paradise

Furthermore it is ok to dye the hair with dark, close to black but not really black, like dark red. Some scholars have said that the reason for avoiding dying hair in black is so that those who have white hair (شيب) avoid jealousy and arrogance. Also the reason is to not be like the disbelievers, Source.

  • As Christian and Jews now dye their hair, "act differently from them", don't do it (?) – Quidam Aug 5 '16 at 19:56
  • This answer doesn't touch the point of blond and other hair colors. It shouldn't have received the upvotes that it received, which I am guessing is based on the hadits that it quotes, etc... – Ameer Jul 16 '17 at 17:22
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The comment of @Muz should be the answer to your question. During day-to-day conversation the sentences are spoken keeping in mind the direct addressees. It is not expected from the speaker to formulate a statement that handles all cases. It is expected from the audience to understand such sentences according to the rules of language not those of formal logic.

It implies that whosoever dyes his/her hair with the intention of deceiving others is doing wrong no matter what the colour is. Furthermore, if your intention is not to deceive then you can also dye it black.

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While I can understand why a majority of 'ulama (Islamic scholars) considered black hair dye to be haram, it still seems overly simplistic to take that position. Having read the ahadith (Prophetic Statements) on the matter, one would definitely conclude that it would be safer and more scrupulous to avoid black. But to call something haram requires absolute proof, and I feel that the ahadith on the subject fall short of providing absolute proof. The most oft-quoted hadith on the subject involves a man named Abu Quhaafa, whose hair was fully white. The Prophet, peace be upon him, directed his Companions to change the color of his hair by dyeing it, but to avoid black. This may have been intended to clarify a general ruling that the Prophet wanted to establish, namely, that dyeing hair black color is forbidden. But it is also possible that this injunction was a special case applying to this man for some particular reason. We can't really tell with absolute certainty, based on the limited information available. A second hadith states that there would be people near the end of time who dye their hair black like the color of crows or doves, and that these people will not smell the scent of Paradise. Again, this is a description of a certain specific group of people, which doesn't prove that the Prophet intended to establish a general ruling. These types of hadith ought to be enough to establish a ruling of Makruh, or disliked. Yes, a very scrupulous person would not want to go near something that was spoken of by the Prophet in such terms, showing that he may disapprove of it. Nonetheless, I haven't seen any source texts that would indicate the absolute proof needed to declare something haram as a general ruling for all society. It also bothers me a little to say that coloring one's hair to look younger is 'deceiving people'. Why else would someone color their hair? The typical reason is to look younger, but that is a pretty normal human desire. It seems rather harsh and perhaps unfair to characterize that as deceit. It's possible that the Prophet would characterize it is as that, but I think we would need to have more clear proof if we want to make that leap.

  • You make a good point here about absolute certainty for something being haram. – Ameer Jul 16 '17 at 17:23
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If the intention of the Prophet( pbuh) was to have no problem with dyeing the hair black then he would have never said to AVOID it....Let us not forget that he also encouraged us to let the gray or white hairs remain grey or white as it will be a light for us in the hereafter!

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