Nishmat's Women’s Health and HalachaIn memory of Chaya Mirel bat R' Avraham

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Permanent makeup

21 November, 2019


Can one do beauty tattoos? As in to fill one’s eyebrows, eyeliner? They are not totally permanent and fade over time. Every few years they have to be redone.


Since it is for purposes of beautification and has no independent substance, permanent makeup is not considered a chatzitzah (barrier) to mikveh immersion.

However, there is debate about the halachic status of permanent makeup such as microblading and whether it technically falls under the prohibition of tattooing.

Rav Yehuda Henkin z”l, the founding rabbinic supervisor of this site, permitted the use of permanent makeup specifically when it would restore a woman’s natural features. (For example, if a woman suffers from a medical condition that causes her eyebrows to fall out, permanent makeup would be allowed to restore the look of her eyebrows.)  This approach would be based on viewing the potential prohibition here as rabbinic, and a restorative process as a matter of kevod haberiyot (preserving dignity) and relieving real distress.

But in a case of enhancing or adding on to one’s natural look, Rav Henkin would not permit use of permanent makeup, which at least could give the impression of tattooing; that impression is itself a halachic concern.

Our current rabbinic supervisor, Rav Kenneth Auman, agrees.

If your situation is more in the latter category, then you might wish to explore alternatives that do not raise halachic questions of tattooing, like eyebrow tinting (which is also not considered a chatzitzah).

You should feel free to discuss this question with your rabbi, or to contact the answer service of Eretz Hemdah for their perspective.

This response was updated on 16 November 2023.

This internet service does not preclude, override or replace the psak of any rabbinical authority. It is the responsibility of the questioner to inform us of any previous consultation or ruling. As even slight variation in circumstances may have Halachic consequences, views expressed concerning one case may not be applied to other, seemingly similar cases. All health and health-related information contained within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is intended to be general in nature and should not be used as a substitute for consulting with your health care professional. The advice is intended to offer a basis for individuals to discuss their medical condition with their health care provider but not individual advice. Although every effort is made to ensure that the material within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is accurate and timely, it is provided for the convenience of the Web site user but should not be considered official. Advice for actual medical practice should be obtained from a licensed health care professional.

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