Islam is a complete code of life with guidelines for every aspect, including dressing; both men and women are commanded to protect their modesty. Islam has legislated a dress code to conceal one’s awrah (i.e. private parts). Society often focuses on how Muslim women are required to dress yet they neglect that men have some instructions when it comes to clothing as well.
Some colors are impermissible for men. These are red, maroon and orange, or clothes dyed in saffron, because these colors are worn by non-Muslims. For instance, Buddhist monks and Hindu pandits wear saffron-colored clothes while Christian Cardinals wear red robes etc. While these colors are forbidden, clothes with patterns of such colors are allowed; only solid-colored are prohibited. The colors recommended for all Muslims are white, black and green (Al-Munajjid, 1998).
Fabrics such as pure silk, velvet (Muslim, 5129), and such are prohibited for men;
Narrated ‘Uqba bin ‘Amir: A silken Farruj was presented to Allah’s Apostle and he put it on and offered the prayer in it. When he finished the prayer, he took it off violently as if he disliked it and said, ‘This (garment) does not befit those who fear Allah!’ (Bukhari, 693).
However, silk is permitted in cases necessitating wearing it; Anas ibn Malik reported that ‘Abd al-Rahman ibn Awf and Zu’bair. ibn ‘Awwam complained to Allah’s Messenger ? about lice and were granted concession to wear shirts of silk, (Muslim, 5172). Also, “Muslim combatants in war who are allowed to wear silk in order to show off and annoy the enemy, which is a kind of psychological warfare.” (Dress code for men in Islam, 2011). Muawiya ibn Suwaid reported that among the things Prophet Mohammad ? forbade the Muslim men are wearing gold rings, drinking in silver vessels, using red silk, wearing garments from Qassi material, silk, brocade and velvet (Muslim, 5129).
Furthermore, Islam prohibits men imitating women and vice versa. This means men should not wear feminine clothing. In fact, Prophet Mohammad ? cursed men who purposely imitate women (Bukhari, 773). Also, it should not be so wrapped around too tight,
Jabir reported Allah’s Messenger ? as saying: When the thong of the shoe of any one of you is cut off. he should not walk with one sandal until he has got the thong repaired, and he should not walk with one shoe and he should not eat with his left hand and should not wrap his cloth round his knees or wrap himself completely leaving no room for the arms [to draw out]. (Muslim, 5235).
Islam discourages pride and therefore prohibits one to trail garments out of pride, “Ibn ‘Umar reported Allah’s Messenger ? having said: Allah will not look upon him who trails his garment out of pride.” (Muslim, 5191). This relates to young men nowadays wearing their trousers low, dragging around them on ground. This represent pride and gives a messy outlook of the individual.
Sports clothing should not have impermissible colors. Having said that, it can have traces of those colors (Al-Munajjid, 1998). As for symbols and signs on the clothing, it is permissible to wear such clothes. However, if those symbols represent a religious group or allegiance or reverence to certain individuals, or represent hatred towards Islam, it is forbidden to wear them (Question 105416, 2009).
Usually men wear shorts and such while playing sports that tend to be too tight and short, compromising modesty. Sports clothing should be loose enough to not reveal one’s shape and form. Therefore, such clothing is impermissible to wear. “With regard to playing sport wearing only shorts which show the thighs or most of them, this is not permissible. The correct view is that young men must cover their thighs…” (Fatwa Of Shaykh Ibn ‘Uthaymeen From Fataawa Islamiyyah, 2003).
Clothing material should not be thin to the degree of becoming transparent. This is because it would not properly conceal one’s private parts and thus, compromise one’s modesty. To add, clothes become virtually transparent when too tight. In short, any sports apparel that is not of the prohibited colors and/or fabrics and conceals one’s awrah is permissible.
One should take the utmost care when preparing for prayers, and that care should extend to one’s clothes as well. One must wear clean clothes, free from impurities. Hence, men whose clothes are dirty and foul-smelling from working and such should be careful and wear clean ones.
Apparel for prayer should not be tight, restricting movements during prayer. Tight clothes also contradict general Islamic etiquettes for dressing oneself and therefore should be avoided even in prayers. In other words, clothing for prayers should be loose and modest, concealing awrah.
Clothing for prayer should not be transparent because one of the prerequisites for valid salah is covering private parts. Wearing garments distracting one from full concentration during prayers should be avoided. Having said that, one should wear clothes pleasing to Allah because prayer is when we present ourselves to our Lord.
Islam has instructions and guidelines for everything, and there are sound reasons behind them; some we know and some we do not but, we trust Allah and His Messenger’s ? wisdom. We should take care of our clothing, whether male or female, because Islam has stressed it. Our apparel is a part of our outlook and appearance. One of the reasons Islam emphasizes instructions about clothing is because as Muslims, people judge us and our religion by how we look and dress ourselves.
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