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Beard as-Sunnah for Muslims
According to Sunnah as Prophet Muhammad (peace be upon him) did, it is recommended for men to have beards. In Muslim countries, it is common to see men with beards in public such as on the train, in a shopping mall, and even workplace too.
However, unlike these countries, Japan is not a Muslim-majority country and non-Muslims account for the majority of Japan’s population. Accordingly, the reaction to beard is also different from those in Muslim countries.
Reaction to Bearded People in Japan in General
Conventionally, having a beard is often associated with negative images such as blowsy, filthiness, and so on. So, Japanese men are likely to shave their beards when they go out or are in public to look hygienic and neat. From the perspective of fashion, shaving/removing a beard is recently a part of a trend for young men. One unique survey* shows almost 85% of Japanese women between 20 years old and 39 years old do not like men with beards. Accordingly, more and more Japanese men have been removing their beards and taking care of facial treatment.
*Survey is conducted by Liberes KK company in 2020 (reference: https://www.atpress.ne.jp/news/207290).
Is it allowed to have a beard in the workplace in Japan?
Technically speaking, having a beard is not prohibited by the law so you can have it wherever in Japan. Yet, you need to know the regulation of the company to which you belong. As mentioned above, having a beard does not really give a good impression to Japanese people. To avoid this kind of concern to the customer/guest, some companies are really keen on this issue, especially in hospitality and service industries such as restaurants, hotels, and hospitals where you need to directly deal with the customers.
On the other hand, most IT companies allow employees to have a beard because they do not have to meet customers directly and this kind of industry is quite new, then they can flexibly manage the employees.
If you are worried about having a beard in your workplace, it is safer to confirm in advance with the employer or HR person.
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