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Ihram For Women During Umrah: Attire, Rituals And Restrictions


While planning Umrah, one must understand its cultural values and virtues. In the Islamic culture, Ihram is one of the most important and initial stages of Umrah. Ihram for Umrah for women has been addressed in Islam in quite detail. The rituals are different for men and women but the purpose remains the same – to avoid attention and be same in front of the Almighty. Wearing Ihram reminds the pilgrim to be humble. Neither the trip nor the prayers are complete without Ihram.

Umrah requires the pilgrim to give up all the worldly pleasures and surrender to Allah. It is the first step towards the journey of purifying the soul of the sins committed in the past. Umrah means visiting the sacred Kabba, the holy house of Allah, to pray in the glory of God. Before entering the second boundary of Makkah, pilgrims have to adopt the state of Ihram. It combines with Niyyah and Talbiyah to complete the Umrah. Niyyah refers to ‘the pure intention to worship Allah’, whereas Talbiyah is a prayer recited repeatedly to extoll the glory of god. However, nothing starts without entering Ihram.

Why Is Ihram Important?

The line/boundary that separates an ordinary Muslim from a pilgrim is called Miqat. As one wears an Ihram, they cross the line of Miqat. Its aim is to avoid attracting attention from the surroundings. It makes everyone equal in the eyes of the almighty. There are no differences in front of God, no one is richer than God and no one is bigger than God. Ihram unites the people who believe in Allah and worship God.

It is an item of clothing that has restrictions for both men and women. The Ihram for ladies during Umrah is different from men. Before entering the state of Ihram, pilgrims bathe, perform a cleansing ritual, and pronounce their intention to start the Umrah or Hajj. After attaining Ihram, the devotee is called a Muhrim. During this state, one cannot kill a living being, hunt an animal, cut nails or hair, wear perfume, put on makeup or perform the physical act of love with anyone.

Rules Of Ihram For Women

Female pilgrims in Ihram attire

Ihram for Umrah for women has no mention of specific garments. There is no guide on how to wear Ihram for Umrah for women. Also, there are no restrictions on women regarding unstitched or stitched clothing. During the worship, a pilgrim must devote herself to Allah without attracting eyes from the surroundings. This is an important Ihram rule for women.

Dos and Don’ts in Ihram for Women

Ihram clothing for ladies & other rules

Generally, women follow the basic dressing code that Islamic culture prefers, which include:

  1. Women must wear light coloured clothes that keep them comfortable.
  2. The Ihram for women must be thick and plain, so none of the body parts is revealed during the prayer.
  3. If women wear white Abayas (a full-length outer garment worn by some Muslim women), then the underclothing must also be white as coloured underclothes may shine from beneath.
  4. Women can also wear black clothes. There is no compulsion for them to wear white, however, many prefer to wear it. It makes everyone appear the same in front of Allah. Also, white helps to keep the body cool when one is praying under the scorching sun.
  5. Women are also advised to wear a Hijab, which is large enough to cover their entire body. It is a sign that they have respect in the world of men, and it keeps them secure from the evil eyes of lust.
  6. After completion of Umrah, there is a ritual called Taqsir, where women cut an inch of their hair.

Ihram For Women During Umrah: Restrictions

  1. There are restrictions from wearing a face veil or gloves to receiving blessings from the almighty.
  2. Once in the state of Ihram, women must not comb or clip their hair to avoid hair fall.
  3. They must not wear any jewelry or glittery clothes, and should refrain from using cosmetics, scented oils, and perfumes. This is to ensure that one connects with God directly without creating interruptions for other people or attracting attention to them. Also, they are restricted from chanting the Talbiyah loudly. They must recite the prayer softly such that people beside her (except her family member or mahram) cannot hear the voice and get distracted.
  4. They must plan the visit according to their menstruation cycles. Menstruating women or bleeding ladies after childbirth are forbidden to perform the ritual or wear Ihram.
  5. When in Ihram, women must maintain a safe distance from other men and must stay with their group or mahram. There is a separate space for women to perform the rituals. It keeps them away from unwanted interactions with men who are not their mahram.

In case a women violate any of the mentioned rules for Ihram during Umrah she must pay obligatory Fidya as Ihram penalties.

The sacred state of Ihram brings one a step closer to God and ensures that the pilgrim performs Umrah or Hajj successfully. The primary aim for an Ihram attire for women is to ensure they all appear the same and do not attract any attention. It helps them to feel humble and devoted to the pilgrimage and surrender themselves in front of Allah. To complete the journey peacefully and safely, women should dress accordingly and attain the sacred state of Ihram. Further, they should adhere to the strict guidelines provided by the authorities and religious teachers to avoid negative gazes in the public. There are many other rules that one must be aware of before taking on the pilgrimage of Hajj and Umrah.

Ihram For Women FAQs

Why is Ihram for women important?

Women should wear Ihram properly to come in a sacred state and avoid unwanted gazes.

Can women comb in Ihram?

No, women can’t comb or clip their hair in the state of Ihram.

What is forbidden in Ihram?

To avoid hair fall, ladies must not brush or tie their hair while in Ihram. They are not permitted to wear any jewelry or sparkling clothing, and they are not permitted to use makeup, or fragrances. Women who are menstruating or who are bleeding after childbirth are not allowed to complete the rite or wear Ihram. Women must stay far away from other males when in Ihram and remain with their mahram. Violation of any rules will result in Ihram penalties

What is Ihram clothing for women?

Women wear light-colored clothes. No body part should be visible, the ihram should be thick and plain. They can also wear black clothes if they wish. However, white is preferable as it helps to keep the body cool. They are also required to wear Hijab.

What is Ihram for ladies?

There are no specifications mentioned regarding the ihram for ladies. Also, there are no guidelines for how to wear 7 Ihram during Umrah. It is important for the pilgrim to devote herself to Allah without getting distracted from the surroundings.

Dr Omar Ayoub

Dr. Omar Ayoub is a tech enthusiast and a part time researcher and accounts authorship of several international publications. He holds a PhD in Computer Science from USA and has an experience of more than 10 years in Saudi Arabia working in tourism, hospitality, education, technology and retail sector. His interests include traveling, writing, and exploring trending technologies.

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