Answered by: Mufti Naieem Mohammad
There is a hadith that says Muhammad Sallallahu Alayhi Wasallam cursed women and men who imitate each other by wearing the opp. gender’s clothes. Is it haram for me, a Muslim girl to wear men’s apparel for the sake of modesty as men’s clothes are baggy?
In the name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
This is a very intelligent question; may Allah keep guiding you.
The hadeeth that you have mentioned is found in more than one source, a few variations are quoted below:
عن أبي هريرة -رضي الله عنه- قال: لعن رسول الله -صلى الله عليه وسلم- الرجل يلبس لِبْسَةَ المرأة، والمرأة تلبس لِبْسَةَ الرجل. .
Abu Hurayrah (may Allah be pleased with him) reported: The Messenger of Allah (s.a.w.) cursed the man who wears women’s clothes and the woman who wears men’s clothes.
Another Hadeeth mentions:
حَدَّثَنَا مَحْمُودُ بْنُ غَيْلاَنَ، حَدَّثَنَا أَبُو دَاوُدَ الطَّيَالِسِيُّ، حَدَّثَنَا شُعْبَةُ، وَهَمَّامٌ، عَنْ قَتَادَةَ، عَنْ عِكْرِمَةَ، عَنِ ابْنِ عَبَّاسٍ، قَالَ لَعَنَ رَسُولُ اللَّهِ صلى الله عليه وسلم الْمُتَشَبِّهَاتِ بِالرِّجَالِ مِنَ النِّسَاءِ وَالْمُتَشَبِّهِينَ بِالنِّسَاءِ مِنَ الرِّجَالِ .
قَالَ أَبُو عِيسَى هَذَا حَدِيثٌ حَسَنٌ صَحِيحٌ
Narrated Ibn ‘Abbas r.a.:
“The Messenger of Allah s.a.w. cursed the women who imitate men and the men who imitate women.
Allah has created men and women with individual traits and qualities and characteristics that identify each gender. There are many similarities between genders but there are also many distinctions such as physical make-up, beauty traits, the capability of childbirth, even the voices of women are different from that of men most of the time.
The above Ahadeeth tell us that Allah curses the people who imitate the opposite gender by either way of dress, habits, etc. because this shows a great disregard for the decree of Allah and it is a bold opposition against the decision of Allah to place a person into one of the gender categories. Such a curse falls upon the person who shows displeasure with their birth-assigned gender and tries to be identified as the other gender.
If however, a woman uses men’s clothing such as baggy pants or loose shirts with the intention of properly covering their awrah this will be permissible but with certain conditions.
- That she is not mistaken as a man because of her dressing
- The majority of women in that area also dress like that (urf/custom of the area)
- The dressing has to be modest and not revealing or attract the attention of strange men
- Feminine alternatives such as Abaayas are hard to come by or they are difficult to wear in that society
If the above conditions are met, then it will be permissible for you to wear the style of men’s clothing.
Only Allah knows best
Written by Mufti Naieem Mohammad
Checked and approved by Mufti Mohammed Tosir Miah
Darul Ifta Birmingham
[صحيح] – رواه النسائي في الكبرى، وابن ماجه بمعناه، وأحمد
Qawaaid Fiqhiyya pg 12
Qawaaid Fiqhiyya pg 46