A ‘breathable’ nail polish, which allows water vapors to pass through to the nail, is causing a stir among devout Muslim women who are unable to wear regular polish because of the washing involved in daily prayers.
Muslims’ pre-prayer ritual includes washing the arms and face completely, where water must touch every surface – an impossible feat if a layer of paint is covering the nails.
But Inglot Cosmetics, a company from Poland which is available in the U.S. at Macy’s, has released a new line of permeable polish called O2M which will allow Muslim women the freedom to wear polish as they please.
Freedom to wear nail polish: A ‘breathable’ nail polish, which allows water vapors to pass through to the nail, is causing a stir among devout Muslim women who are unable to wear regular polish because of daily prayers
Muslim professor Mustafa Umar explained on his blog The Evolution of Ideas that there is ‘nothing intrinsically wrong with wearing nail polish,’ the real issue is that this substance forms an impermeable barrier over the nails preventing water from getting underneath.
For years, women have been required to either remove and reapply polish for prayers every day, or wait to wear it during the week they have their period – when they’re not allowed to pray.
But, Mr Umar said, ‘this usually indicates to another person that a sister is undergoing her period, which can be very embarrassing for others to know.’
The urge to wear nail polish on a regular basis has become so strong, however, that some women have taken to to wearing stick-on nail polish that can be easily peeled off.
The O2M polish uses a polymer used in some contact lenses, which allows oxygen and moisture to penetrate to the nail.
A student of Mr Umar’s actually tested the product’s validity by painting one swatch of regular polish and another of O2M’s enamel onto a coffee filter, placing a clean coffee filter underneath.
When the polish dried, she squeezed drops of water onto each swatch, and waited ten seconds.
New formula: Inglot Cosmetics, a company from Poland, has released a line of permeable polish called O2M which will allow Muslim women the freedom to wear polish as they please
The filter beneath the standard polish was dry, as was the backside of the filter it was painted on. But it easily soaked beneath the O2M polish, and even wet the second filter – proving it is in fact, breathable.
Whether a manicure meets the Muslim standards for modesty, however, concerning whether or not nail polish should be used by Muslim women in public, is a separate issue many Islamic woman must face.
In May last year, a woman confronted the Saudi police in the Hayat Mall in Riyadh after they took offense to her freshly manicured nails.
According to the Saudi Gazette, the woman’s actions, which she reordered and uploaded to YouTube, led to the launch of an official Commission fro the Promotion of Virtue and Prevention of Vice (HAIA) conduct review.
The member of the HAIA is seen in the video harrasing the woman, saying: ‘You don’t see a strand of hair from other girls while you are showing off your manicure in a public venue… this is my duty to tell you this.’
The girl replied: ‘Why are you chasing me? The government said no more chasing! Your duty is to advise people… why are you looking at my manicure? I will never leave the mall!’
Source: Mail Online