RED! (Part 2)


Why is it makrooh? You did not give a reason why men should avoid the color! Is the reason because of attraction the color may cause??? Reason Please      Date Posted: 2010 February 19

Could you explain the reason as of why? bint Hussein    Date Posted: 2010 February 19


There is a difference of opinion regarding the color red. Without going into detail, here are some hadith that I would like to share with you so as to contribute to our understanding as to its karahat (being makrooh-dislike) for men to wear it:

First read each of the following hadith (or atleast italicized portion for brevity), thereafter view my simple explanation below:

Narrated by Abdullah ibn Amr ibn ‘As: (Abu Dawood)

We came down with the Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) from a turning of a valley. He turned his attention to me and I was wearing a garment dyed with a reddish yellow dye. Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) asked: What is this garment upon you? I recognized what he disliked. I then came to my family who were burning their oven. I threw it in it and came to Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) the next day. Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) asked: Abdullah, what have you done with the garment? I informed him about it. He said: Why did you not give it to one of your family to wear, for there is no harm in it for women.

Narrated by Abdullah ibn Amr ibn al-‘As: (Abu Dawood)

The Rasool of Allah (Subhanahu Wata’Ala) saw me. Another version of AbuAli al-Lula’ states: I think I wore a garment dyed with a reddish yellow color. Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) asked: What is this? So I went and burnt it. Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) said: What have you done with your garment? I replied: I burnt it. Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) said: Why did you not give it to one of your women to wear?

Narrated by Abdullah ibn Amr ibn al-‘As (RA): (Abu Dawood)

A man wearing two red garments greeted Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) and gave him a greeting, but he (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) did not respond to (t)his greeting.

Narrated by Rafi’ ibn Khadij (RA): (Abu Dawood)

We went out with the Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) on a journey and we had on our saddles and camels garments consisting of red warp of wool. Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) said: Do I not see that red color has dominated you. We then got up quickly on account of this saying Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) and some of our camels ran away. We then took the garments and withdrew them.

Narrated By Baraa’ ibn ‘Aazib (RA):  (Bukari)

‘Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam) forbade us to use soft red mattresses and qasiy – garments with woven stripes of silk.’

Narrated by Ibn ‘Abbaas (RA): (Imam Nasai)

I was forbidden (to adorn) red garments and gold rings and to recite Qur’aan in ruku.’

Rulings are not usually passed on the basis of just one hadith!

Let us show you some simple steps of how a fatwa can be passed:

As you must have noted from the above: none of the  hadith make clear that red is totally (hurmiyat) prohibited for every individual, thus we too have not made such a claim. To get out of the contradiction (ithilaf), the serious and cautious scholars of the past have made mention of the following: Although red is not haram, but due to the following remarks and or actions of Rasulullah (Sallallaahu alayhi wasallam):

  • ‘Do I not see that red color has dominated you,’

Or due to the action of (for an action falls under sunnah-in this case, rebuke)

  • The lack of a possible vocal response to the person wearing red garments,

As well as the recommendation

  • ‘Why did you not give it to one of your women to wear?’

The following is thus made clear: it is best for red to be worn by woman, men must try to abstain from the dominant color of red upon themselves, a man can become unworthy of an audible response for wearing the color red!

To be fair, there are Ahadith that on the surface that give leeway for wearing red. When we have an outward dislike for a particular color garment and other hadith that give for its allowance, it is best to error on the side of safety. This is the general rule that scholars wanting to error on the side of caution use. This method also elevates ones taqwa.

Thus, we conclude, out of need, red can be worn, for it is not Haram!  Example of need would be inclusive of wearing it as part of a uniform, etc. In such a situation, the expression of its disapproval would be subverted.

Alternatively, if a male wishers to wear red, by all means they can do it with a line in its structure, for some Sahaba have implied that lines existed as part of the fabric eliminating its(perceived) reproach if worn as indicated by us.

Allah Certainly Knows Best.

You folks have posed a supremely in-depth and intelligent inquiry, I am glad to have been of service in clearing up any issues with Red!

For students, we have used different color font, italics, etc to show how our opinion has been formulated. There are other factors that also go into rulings, i have eliminated them for this simple practice in the interest of your time.


6 responses to “RED! (Part 2)

  1. The U of U color is red. :P

    • ‘Imam, the U sweater is red!!!’ (text)
      glad you thinking U
      I am thinking on how to make it religiously suitable without sacrificing our cherished principles.
      Solution: Wear it with the black writing or whatever other color writing they have on it in (if you must wear it at all)
      (i guess the U of U folks were making it acceptable for us. Watch them discontinue when someone hears this! or maybe not!)

      (#745 as dictated)

  2. Was the color red associated with other things which are negative at the time. For example, was the red dye expensive and therefore considered an unnecessary luxury?

  3. as-salamu ‘alaykom, if I may ask where in all the A’hadith presented did the Messenger of Allah (saas) actually prohibited the wearing of the colour red? Where are his (saas) words which clearly express the so called prohibition?

  4. Wa’alaykum Salaam,
    We don’t know where in the above ahaadith there is an explicit prohibition, and thus are unsure where you are coming from with your question. As you can read from the Imaam’s response, he repeatedly stated an interpretation that leans towards the karahat of the wearing of red for men. If a prohibition were to be seen, it would be interpreted from the fact that, when the Prophet Sallallaahu alayhi wa sallam expressed displeasure regarding the color red on men, the ashaab kareem RadiAllaahu anhum immediately took it as a “cease and desist” order.

    Please let us know if it is still unclear, and why/how it is unclear.