Can nuns wear makeup? (Makeup and religious life)

As a theologian, I have always been intrigued by Catholic nuns and their beliefs in dressing and makeup. My curiosity drove me to the local Catholic Church as a volunteer, where I interacted with and observed the nuns and their affairs. My experience allowed me to have a close and in-depth look at how they conducted themselves and the principles they followed regarding their outward appearance. During a recent bible study, one of my group members had attended a Catholic mass for the first time and was curious to know more about the nuns and their lifestyle. The lady had observed the nuns’ simplicity and lack of makeup. She was curious to know if there were nuns who wore makeup. From my experience, I could share my knowledge regarding the issue. So, can nuns wear makeup?

Nuns are allowed to wear makeup. However, this will depend on the specific rules and regulations the nuns are subject to, which is dependent on the orderly they belong to. One of the main principles that nuns adhere to is that of modesty. Makeup, especially when used excessively, is considered immodest; therefore, nuns may choose to forgo it completely. In some places, they may be allowed to wear makeup as long as they use it minimally and keep it simple.

I invite you to continue reading this article to delve deeper and learn if there are restrictions against makeup for nuns if nuns can wear jewelry, and if they can straighten their hair.

Is there a restriction against makeup for nuns?

Yes, there is. Nuns are guided by principles such as poverty, modesty, obedience, and chastity. With this in mind, they may be restricted from wearing any makeup or a little amount of makeup.

Typically, makeup should be used to enhance one’s beauty. However, when used excessively, it could change one’s appearance completely. According to catholic nuns, applying excessive makeup would be drawing attention to themselves, thus, not adhering to the principle of modesty.

Also, unless the nuns have other jobs to supplement their income, they usually have enough to provide for their basic needs. They may be restricted in this way as they may not be able to afford makeup.

Can nuns use lip gloss?

Can nuns wear makeup? 
Can nuns use lip gloss? Image source: Pixabay

Yes, they can. However, they are likely not to.

Even though some orderlies may allow their nuns to wear makeup, they are required to keep it simple as a way to maintain their principles of modesty. Lip gloss is quite shiny and is likely to draw attention, which is something nuns are prohibited from doing.

Can nuns wear jewelry?

Yes, they can. Nuns are often seen wearing rosaries, crucifixes, and rings. Since they are called to a life of constant prayer, and one of the practices of the Catholic faith is praying the rosary, nuns are often seen wearing rosaries around their necks or their waist as belts.

They may also wear plain wedding bands to symbolize their marriage to the church. They may also wear rosary rings that they can use to pray, the same way they use rosary beads.

Can nuns wear nail polish?

Can nuns wear makeup?
Can nuns wear nail polish? Image source: Pixabay

Yes, they can. However, they are required to keep it simple. They may be allowed to wear clear or light-colored nail polish.

In adherence to their principle of modesty and to not draw attention to themselves, nuns may be allowed to wear nail polish as long as it is clear or light-colored.

Inasmuch as they are allowed to, since nuns adhere to the principle of poverty, nail polish may be considered a luxury and not a necessity. Most of them may choose to forgo this luxury and use their money for necessities or to help the poor.

Can nuns straighten their hair?

Yes, they can. Nuns are required to maintain neatness, and straightened hair is considered neater than curly hair.

Nuns are usually required to cover their heads with a veil. The veil represents the nuns’ vows of chastity and obedience to God and the church. With this in mind, practically, it is much easier to wear a veil with straightened hair.

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