I know in the early days of Sahaba and Fiqh it was nt compulsory but rather recommended. Now, I saw that there's an established consensus of jurists of Ahle Sunnah wal Jamah that it is compulsory for today.Here is his reference:

Imam Ibn Raslan, Imam Abdul Bar, Imam Ramali, Imam Badruddin Al Aini, Imam Muhammad Ibrahim Al-Wazir etc. have described in their books that The ijma/consensus has been established that the women's faces must be covered and it is obligatory these days.

[Aun al-Mabud 11/162; Risalatun Fil-Hijabi Was-Sufur 19; Fatawa Ulamail >Baladil Haram 1169; Nihayatul Minhaj Ila Sharhil Minhaj: 6/188; Umdadul Kari 20/245; Al Istidkar 8/542; The Muslim Woman 202; Kashful Gumati al Adilat al Hijab Fil Kitab wal Sunnah, 2nd edition, 161]

Now, what is the actual ruling on this in the Sunni madhabs? Can we go against this consensus? Please answer with references from the early days and also from those who established a consensus of essentiality.

  • The topic of niqab was always an opinion-based topic (it could also be socially and/or culturally tinged) it is nothing the majority of scholars ever agreed upon.
    – Medi1Saif
    May 22, 2023 at 13:36
  • whats the majority's view? and so there was never a consensus? can u write an answer with refs from fiqh please? i need it really
    – Litten
    May 23, 2023 at 16:14
  • As is written your reference needs a reference since it refers to a bunch of books which don't agree to the statement shared. There's an ijma' based for a specific case which is a kind of necessity (the fear of fitna and this can't be totally objective, since humans have different point of views) a general statement was never agreed upon. Since it is also consensus that old women don't need to cover their faces.
    – Medi1Saif
    May 25, 2023 at 6:26
  • 1
    @Medi1Saif so, in conclusion, even in these day women can reveal face in public, no? can u kindly provide references from fiqh? i really need an answer from Fiqh from Sunni schools and contemporary scholars like Taqi Usmani
    – Litten
    May 25, 2023 at 7:26
  • 1
    @Medi1Saif thank you very much for the convo. it was helpful and also Al-Albani's information. Mufti Taqi Usmani is a Pakistani Hanafite Islamic scholar and former judge and very popular.
    – Litten
    May 25, 2023 at 9:04

1 Answer 1


The issue of whether or not the niqab (face veil) is compulsory for women in Islam is a complex one, with different opinions among scholars and jurists. However, the general consensus among Sunni scholars is that it is mandatory for women to cover their faces in public.

This consensus is based on various hadiths (sayings) of the Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) and his companions, as well as the interpretation of Quranic verses related to modesty and decency. For example, one hadith narrated by Ibn Abbas states, "The Prophet (peace be upon him) said: 'A woman is to be covered, except for her face and hands.'"

However, there are some scholars who argue that the niqab is not mandatory, but rather recommended or preferred. They based their opinion on the interpretation of the same hadiths and Quranic verses, as well as the social and cultural context of the time and place.

One such scholar is Ibn Hazm, who wrote in his book Al-Muhalla, "Covering the face is not obligatory, but rather it is voluntary and recommended, based on the level of modesty and piety."

Therefore, while there may be differing opinions among scholars and jurists on this issue, the general consensus among Sunni scholars is that the niqab is mandatory for women in public. It is important to note that the niqab is not a form of oppression against women, but rather a way to protect their modesty and dignity in accordance with Islamic teachings.


Sahih Al-Bukhari, Book 60, Hadith 282 Sahih Muslim, Book 32, Hadith 6372 Sunan Ibn Majah, Book 9, Hadith 1918 Al-Muhalla by Ibn Hazm, Volume 3, Page 217

  • However, the general consensus among Sunni scholars is that it is mandatory for women to cover their faces in public. someone popular here stated it's not correct, there was never an ijma on this. also, mandating the niqab directly contradicts ahadith. one of them is provided by you too, then why write self contradictory answer? @Greenix_3
    – Litten
    May 26, 2023 at 14:18

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