It is a Mitzvah upon a person to get a haircut on Erev Shavuos in honor of Yom Tov, in order so one does not enter into the holiday looking unrepresentable.



May one get a haircut during Shloshes Yimei Hagbala?

It is our custom to avoid getting haircuts until Erev Shavuos.[2]

On Erev Shavuos: It is permitted, and is a Mitzvah, to get a haircut on Erev Shavuos. One may do so even past midday.

Erev Shavuos that falls on Shabbos:[3] When Erev Shavuos coincides with Shabbos one may take a haircut on Erev Shabbos, which is the 48th day of the Omer.[4] [One may begin to take a haircut after sunrise of Erev Shabbos, although not the night before.[5]]


When may one get a haircut on Erev Shavuos?[6]

It is permitted to get a haircut throughout the entire Erev Shavuos, even past the time of Mincha. This applies even to a professional haircut that is being done by a Jew in exchange for payment.

Midday: Some Poskim[7] rule that [despite the above ruling] one is to beware to take a haircut prior to midday. Others[8] however rule that doing so is not required, and so is implied to be the opinion of Admur.[9] Furthermore some[10] rule one is to try to have a haircut specifically past midday so it be recognizable he is doing so in honor of Yom Tov. Even according to the above stringent opinion, if one did not take a haircut prior to midday he may do so afterwards[11], although there are some that are stringent in such a case not to take a haircut.[12]


[1] Admur 529/2 regarding every Erev Yom Tov

[2] Hayom Yom p. 53; Sefer Haminhagim p. 86 [English] “The Rebbe Rashab was uneasy with those which took haircuts during the Shloshes Yimei Hagbala”

[3] Minchas Elazar 3/65; Kaf Hachaim 493/13; Shevach Hamoadim p. 235 footnote 10 in name of Rav Shmuel Levitin that so was the custom in Lubavitch; Otzer Minhagei Chabad p. 290

[4] Although in general, based on the custom of the Arizal, we avoid haircuts until Erev Shavuos, this only applies when Erev Shavuos falls on a weekday, as one cannot enter into the festival with improper attire. Furthermore, it is recorded in Shaar Hakavanos that Rav Chaim Vital was always accustomed to get a haircut on the 48th day of Omer. Some learn this itself was due to Kabalistic reasons. Furthermore, even according to the Rashash which leaned to be stringent not to take a haircut on Erev Shabbos in such a coincidence, nevertheless he too forced himself to do so. Hence there is no room to be stringent on the above, and on the contrary one should do so. [See Minchas Elazar ibid]

[5] See next Q&A!

[6] Admur 251/4 regarding Erev Shabbos and Erev Yom Tov [see 251/1 that includes Erev Yom Tov in these laws]; Mateh Efraim 625/11 “One may take a haircut throughout the entire day”; See “The Laws and Customs of Erev Shabbos” Chapter 2 for the full details of this subject!

[7] Custom of the Arizal brought in M”A 251/5; Gr”a brought in Aruch Hashulchan 251/3; Kitzur Shulchan Aruch 128/15; Mateh Efraim 581/50; Mateh Efraim 625/11 “It is a Mitzvah Min Hamuvchar…”; Alef Lamagen 581/108 “Is a Mitzvah Min Hamuvchar”; Kaf Hachaim 260/13; 581/80 [proper to be stringent]

[8] Aruch Hashulchan 251/3; Alef Lamagen 581/108 rules that the above ruling to take a haircut prior to midday is a Mitzvah Min Hamuvchar and if one did not do so beforehand then he may do so until Mincha Ketana. [Vetzaruch Iyun Gadol on the wording “Mincha Ketana” as everyone agrees a haircut may be taken the entire day.

[9] 251/4


The Magen Avraham 251/5 records that the Arizal would not get a haircut past the time of Mincha Gedola [midday], based on Kabalistic reasons. Admur omitted this custom of the Arizal in 251. See Shaareiy Halacha Uminhag 1/130 that the Rebbe concludes regarding the time of cutting nails, which is similar to the time of the cutting of the hair, that he did not receive a directive in how to follow. The Aruch Hashulchan ibid states that the Gra is stringent against allowing haircuts past midday, although this is not the worldly custom.

[10] Based on Aruch Hashulchan 260/6; See also 251/3

[11] Mateh Efraim 625/11 “It is a Mitzvah Min Hamuvchar…”; Alef Lamagen 581/108

[12] Mateh Efraim ibid based on the Arizal who would refrain from cutting his hair after midday.

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