What are the reasons why a person may be able shave and/or haircut (two biiiits!- sorry, just had to) during the three weeks? Please use sources.

3 Answers 3


The Mishna Berura (OC 551 sk 32) rules that one may shave or take a haircut to look nice for Shabbat if one generally does that action at least once a week.

  • The Mishnah Berurah says it is asur. He doesn't say that if you do it every week it is mutar, just that we don't do it and therefore it is asur. At best, you could say he doesn't address a case where one usually does it every week (though I think he would say tough luck).
    – wfb
    Jul 17, 2015 at 14:36
  • @wfb He does address it by saying that laundry and hair-cutting have the same rule. That couldn't be clearer. Why would you think to distinguish the two? Why would he say tough luck (especially before Rosh Chodesh)? In the Beiur Halacha he says a) the Yerushalmi the OZ is based on is not our Girsa, b) even their Girsa is a צע"ג as it is unlcear and doesn't fit in context, c) the proposed reason for that doesn't apply, d) we probably don't paskin like it anyway.
    – Double AA
    Jul 17, 2015 at 15:01
  • OK, so you pasken le-kula. The Mishnah Berurah doesn't though. And where does he say laundry and hair cutting are the same? He says they are different, and in the Biur Halachah he has some questions about this
    – wfb
    Jul 17, 2015 at 16:14
  • @wfb I feel like we aren't reading the same texts...
    – Double AA
    Jul 17, 2015 at 16:32
  • 1
    @DoubleAA Assuming your interpretation (from your comments) is accurate, "The MB rules" suggests that he says so explicitly. Perhaps you might want to use "implies" instead.
    – Loewian
    Jul 17, 2015 at 20:02

Source: Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 122:

During the 3 week you can shave/haircut if:

  • You're a Mohel, Sandek or father a boy having a Bris
  • Until Rosh Chodesh, for somebody whose Shloshim ended on or after 18 Tamuz (KSA 122:14)

  • You can trim your mustache if it interferese with your eating (KSA 122:4)

  • Danny Schoemann, Welcome to mi.yodeya, and thanks very much for your well-documented answer! I look forward to seeing you around.
    – Isaac Moses
    Jul 15, 2010 at 11:54
  • 1
    Great answers. The 1st can be found in the commentaries to Rema 551:1. Most permit haircuts until the week of Tisha B'Av since that day is their Yom Tov. This extends to a Chasan/Kalla during Sheva Brachos. The Magen Avraham allows haircuts for Shabbos even during the week of T"B. The Chasam Sofer limits this to where mourning can still be detected (shaving for those who are clean-shaven). The 2nd is a case of Tokfo Aveilav. The Dagul Mervava permits even after R"Ch (until week of) if his Shloshim ended then. Any idea why not 17 Tamuz? The 3rd is an example of non-simcha cutting.
    – YDK
    Jul 15, 2010 at 15:42

Two more answers:

If your Safardi, until the week of Tisha b'Av

Clean-shavers who ascribe to R' YD Soloveichik's comparison to the format of yud bais chodesh may shave until Rosh Chodesh.

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