Fatwa: # 30109
Category: Misc. Fiqh
Country: Pakistan
Date: 5th December 2018


Query regarding alcohols found in creams and lotions



Can you please give a list of alcohols which are permissible and those that are not? For instance cetyl alchohol, stearly alcohol etc. are found in creams/lotions. Do these come under najis?

JazakAllah Khayr


In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

Dear Brother,

In principle, alcohol derived from grapes and dates are not permissible and are considered impure. Alcohol derived from other sources that do not intoxicate is permissible. Therefore, cetyl and stearyl alcohols are not intoxicants. They will not be considered impure.

For more information you may refer to #15222 and 16699.

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Tareque Ahmed

Student Darul Iftaa
New York, USA

Checked and Approved by,
Mufti Ebrahim Desai.



Cetyl alcohol: a waxy substance obtained from sperm whale oil, with caustic potash (potassium hydroxide). Modern production is based around the reduction of palmitic acid, which is obtained from palm oil.

Cetyl alcohol is used in the cosmetic industry as an opacifier in shampoos, or as an emollient, emulsifier or thickening agent in the manufacture of skin creams and lotions.


Stearyl alcohol is prepared from stearic acid or some fats by the process of catalytic hydrogenation. It has low toxicity.  It has a wide range of uses as an ingredient in lubricants, resins, perfumes, and cosmetics.

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