(1) What is the ruling concerning shortening extra eyebrow hairs?
(2) What is the ruling concerning letting fingernails grow long and putting on finger nail polish, given that I make ablution before putting them on and it stays for twenty-four hours and then remove it?
(3) Is it allowed for a woman to wear hijab without covering her face when she travels abroad?
(1) It is not allowed to remove or shorten eyebrow hairs. It is confirmed that the Prophet (peace be upon him) cursed the one who has them removed and the one who removed them. The scholars have stated that the hadith is in reference to those who remove eyebrow hairs.
(2) Letting the fingernails grow is something that goes against the sunnah of the Prophet (peace be upon him). He said,
“From the acts of nature are five: circumcision, removing pubic hairs, trimming the mustache, cutting the nails and plucking the hair from under the armpits.”1
It is not allowed to leave them for more than forty nights. This is based on the Hadith of Anas who said, “The Messenger of Allah set a time limit for us for trimming the mustache, trimming nails, removing armpit hairs and removing pubic hairs. They cannot be left for more than forty nights.”2 Letting them grow long resembles animals and some of the disbelievers.
As for nail polish, it is better to avoid it. One must remove it when making ablution since it prevents water from reaching the nails.
(3) It is obligatory for women to wear hijab in front of non mahram men both inside and outside of the country. Allah has said,
“And when you ask them, ask them from behind a screen, that is proper for your hearts and for their hearts” (al-Ahzab 53).
This verse refers to the face and the rest of the body. In fact, the face is the distinguishing part of the woman and it is her most alluring aspect. Allah also says,
“O Prophet! Tell your wives and your daughters and the women of the believers to draw their cloaks (veils) all over their bodies. That will be better, that they should be known (as free respectable women) so as not to be annoyed. And Allah is Ever Oft-Forgiving, Most Merciful” (al-Ahzab 59).
Another verse states,
“[Tell the believing women] not to reveal their adornments except to their husbands, their fathers, their husband’s fathers,” (al-Nur 31).
This verse indicates that hijab is obligatory upon a woman both inside and outside of the country, in front of the Muslims and the non-Muslims. It is not allowed for any woman who believes in Allah and the Hereafter to be lax in this matter as such is an act of disobedience to Allah and His Messengers. Furthermore, it leads temptation regardless if it be in or outside the country.