Ramadan is the ninth month of the Islamic calendar and is celebrated by Muslims worldwide as a month of reflection, prayer and fasting. This year, the holy month of Ramadan came during lockdown. We figured it would be the perfect time to discuss Halal Beauty and reflect on how those who celebrate Ramadan are coping during lockdown. Today we’ll be discussing Halal Beauty and Ramadan with the lovely Nusi, also known as, Barefeacednusi, a scientist and skincare enthusiast. Keep reading to learn more about Halal Beauty and Nusis’ Ramadan Skincare routine.
What is Muslim skincare and Halal beauty?
In order to understand what Halal or Muslim cosmetics are, one must understand the definition of “halal”. According to The Islamic Council of Victoria, halal is, “a term designating any object or an action which is permissible to use or engage in, according to Islamic law”. Most people would recognise this term, since it’s used in the food industry across the United Kingdom. However, as Amara Cosmetics put it, “Halal isn’t limited to what is limited to what is consumed as food but also applied to what is put on our skin”.
In cosmetics, in order to be certified halal, products cannot contain certain ingredients. The Cosmetics Design Asia, states that Halal cosmetics cannot include the following:
- Any parts of forbidden animals, such as collagen and glycerine.
- Any ingredient that could cause harm to the consumer. An example of this would be hydroquinone, which is known to lighten dark patches on the skin.
- Any human parts or ingredients derived from the human body. For example, stem cells, which are a recent trend. It should be noted that plant derived alternatives are accepted.
According to the ICV, all foods are considered halal, except for a few which are considered haram. Here is the list provided by the ICV.
- All alcoholic drinks and intoxicants
- Non-Halal Animal Fat
- Enzymes* (Microbial Enzymes are permissible)
- Gelatine* – from non-Halal source (fish gelatine is Halal)
- L-cysteine (if from human hair)
- Non-Halal Animal Shortening
- Pork, Bacon / Ham and anything from pigs
- Unspecified Meat Broth
- Carnivorous animals, birds of prey and certain other animals
- Foods contaminated with any of the above products
Only skincare products without any trace of the ingredients above must be avoided in order to be considered Halal.
ATRUE Pure Balancing Cleansing Oil
Remove your makeup and sun cream with this cleansing oil which is formulated with only 8 botanical oils, it gets rid of all the dirt and impurities without the need to scrub your face as it breaks down the makeup when applied.
ACWELL Bubble Free pH Balancing Cleanser
A non-foaming gel cleanser which gently cleanses the skin without damaging the skins natural protective barrier.
KLAIRS Supple Preparation Unscented Toner
A beauty brand catered towards those with sensitive skin. This toner is formulated to add hydration back into the skin which would be removed after cleansing. This toner is suitable for those with extra sensitive skin as it is formulated without the fragrance and essential oils found in Klairs' fan favourite, Supple Preparation Facial Toner.
KEEP COOL Ocean Deep Blue Oil
A hydrating facial oil which can be mixed with your skincare products like your serum or facial lotion. It can also be applied to your nails and hair to keep your skin hydrated.
AXIS-Y Dark Spot Correcting Glow Serum
A lightweight serum, perfect for the warmer months which targets dark spots and hyper-pigmentation. AXIS-Y is a brand which focuses on the use of natural plant ingredients to formulate its skincare solution so rest assured that it does not contain any animal-derived ingredients.
GLOSOME All Day Glow Solution Tencel Mask
This biodegradable sheet mask is formulated without harmful ingredients and is drenched in an essence formulated with 8 different types of hyaluronic acid made to hydrate the skin. Take some time to relax and have a little me-time with this sheet mask, just sit back and put your feet up. That dewy glow is just a sheet away!
COSRX Oil-Free Ultra Moisturising Lotion (with birch sap)
As the weather gets warmer and your skin may gets more oily than usual, swap out your thick moisturiser with this lightweight moisturiser to seal in all the moisture. The glycerin found in the lotion is plant-derived so it is suitable for those in pursuit of halal skincare.
This year, Ramadan came around during lockdown. During these strange times, a lot of our routines and everyday schedules are barely manageable or non-existent. These weird times mean, some people’s routines may be completely thrown off. Read Nusi’s Q&A below to see how she managed Ramadan during lockdown and her thoughts on Halal Beauty.
How different is Ramadan this year and how are you coping? (because of lockdown)
This year is different for me because for the past 3 years I have spent Ramadan at university, and I was expecting to spend this Ramadan alone as I live quite far from my family. And just before lockdown started in the UK I moved back home to work from here. So, I guess there has been a silver lining during all this chaos.
What’s your everyday skincare regimen?
I have been focusing on hydration this Ramadan. My most used products this year have been the Cosrx snail mucin essence, Cerave moisturising cream and The Inkey List rosehip oil.
Do you have a signature beauty look during Ramadan?
This Ramadan I have worn no makeup at all. I have been focusing on improving my skin barrier while we are in quarantine and I have the chance to focus on it.
What is considered as Muslim-friendly skincare and halal skincare?
For me, halal skincare and the principles are in line with cruelty-free skincare. ones that do not include things like gelatine, pork, alcohol etc. Which personally I have never had a problem with.
What are your thoughts on Halal Skincare?
Halal skincare has never been something I actively look for in a brand, but more so understanding the background of a brand, their ethics and the brand's values.
Many people are speaking out about their “lockdown skin” and its changes. Some people say they have the best skin they’ve ever had; while, others say their skin hasn’t stopped acting up. How’s your skin treating you?
I've been on an acne recovery journey for a while now, I wouldn't say my skin has been good at all but wouldn't say it has been worse than usual either, I think it is just doing its thing and getting by.
What’s your morning routine?
I splash my face with water, use my Laneige skin refiner toner, the inkey list 15% Vitamin C +. EGF, Cosrx Snail mucin, Cerave moisturising lotion and then finally Avene SPF 50.
What does a typical day in your life look like?
Typically I wake up around 7 am, and I do my morning routine, start working and then I finish around 5:30. After work, I usually go for a walk (prior to Ramadan I would go for a run), bake or shoot some content for my Instagram page. Whereas, my weekends are more focused on gardening, more baking, spending time with my family and trying to get some workouts in there.
What do you do for self-care?
Do you have any holy grail skincare items?
I'm obsessed with Sheet masks , rosehip oil, Cosrx snail mucin Essence, Laneige skin refiner, Cerave moisturiser and let's not forget my all-time favourite cleansing balm by Clinique. These are just some products I will forever purchase.
Dressed down or up during lockdown?
Definitely dressed down.
Skincare or makeup?
100% skincare, if you don't look after your skin, your makeup on top won't look good either.
What makes you feel confident?
I think it's all about mindset and surrounding yourself with people that don't contribute to low self-esteem and poor confidence. I try to surround myself with positive energy and positive people. I try to focus on the good most of the time, rather than the bad. That's just what works best for me.
What is the meaning behind your Instagram name?
So I chose bareface because I opened this account as a way for me to share my love for skincare and my journey to getting to a place where I am confident in my skin without makeup. Getting to a stage where I can go into public with a “bare face” and still be confident.
What tips do you have for those who are also fasting but want to maintain a healthy glow?
Some people ask about vitamins and supplements, I try to still take mine when I break my fast and I try not to neglect my skin even though I am not going out and doing anything, I think that applies to this lockdown situation too.
Does your skincare routine change during Ramadan? If so, how?
No, I don't, but I would say hydration this Ramadan has become a big thing for me, especially because I am eczema-prone, using Differin gel and also fasting.
Do you have a go-to ingredient which you look for in skincare products to use during Ramadan?
Again not so much, but this Ramadan I have been reaching for Rosehip, snail mucin and Vit C a lot more - I would say this is the first Ramadan I am really focusing on skincare, because it has become a bigger part of my life.
It’s very interesting to read about Nusis’ thoughts on Halal Beauty and her Ramadan journey during lockdown. For those of you celebrating Ramadan, how has lockdown affected you? Also, what are your thoughts on Halal Beauty? If you’ve tried it, what are some of your favourite brands? Let us know below!
- Selena A (@lunabeautyuk)