Does Stearic Acid Go Through Chemical Transformation?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Mawlana Ilyas Patel


I’ve heard a lot of different opinions regarding whether stearic acid is permissible – including one on this site – and I just wanted to confirm that stearic acid derived from animals is halal.

Has a reliable source confirmed that it undergoes Istihala? Many medicines contain stearic acid, and I’m unsure how to use it since the source isn’t listed.

Also, some sources say other materials, such as Crayola crayons, fabric softeners, plastic bags, etc., may contain stearic acid, and I’m not sure how to navigate this.


In the Name of Allah, the Most Merciful and Compassionate

Leading contemporary Hanafi scholars have said any product that contains stearic acid and its derivatives, such as sodium stearate, magnesium stearate, etc., will be permissible to use due to going through chemical transformation (istihalat al-‘ayn) and widespread affliction (‘umum al-balwa).

However, if you can find an alternative, then you may use that to avoid misgivings. [Ibn ‘Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]

Check these links:
Is It Permissible to Use Cosmetics and Body Care Products That Contain Animal Ingredients? – SeekersGuidance
Is It Permissible To Use Products That Contain Stearic Acid? – SeekersGuidance
The Islamic Workbook for Religious OCD : A Guide for Overcoming Intrusive Thoughts and Compulsions eBook : Keshavarzi, Hooman, Harfi, Samar , Elzamzamy, Khalid, Khan, Fahad, Kaban, Enes: Kindle Store

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I pray this helps with your question.

[Mawlana] Ilyas Patel
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Mawlana Ilyas Patel is a traditionally-trained scholar who has studied in the UK, India, Pakistan, Syria, Jordan, and Turkey.

He started his early education in the UK. He went on to complete hifz of the Quran in India, then enrolled into an Islamic seminary in the UK, where he studied the secular and Alimiyyah sciences. He then traveled to Karachi, Pakistan.

He has been an Imam in Rep of Ireland for a number of years. He has taught hifz of the Qur’an, Tajwid, Fiqh, and many other Islamic sciences to both children and adults onsite and online extensively in UK and Ireland. He was teaching at a local Islamic seminary for 12 years in the UK, where he was a librarian and a teacher of Islamic sciences.

He currently resides in the UK with his wife. His personal interest is the love of books and gardening.