There may be several reasons why you will need to use a wig. You may have severe hair loss that you need to cover up. It could be that you suffer from a terminal illness like cancer and have lost your to chemotherapy or you just want a change of hair. There are wigs made of artificial hair and those that are made of real human hair. In the case of Jewish people however, an important factor to consider is that the hair used is kosher.

So where does this idea take form? What does it mean for hair to be kosher? One of the main sources of human hair in the world is from India. In this country it is common for men and women to shave their heads in temple based ceremonies. The actual shaving of the head is often in fulfilment of a vow or as an offering to the gods. The money that is received from this shaving is given to the temple for its upkeep.

According to Jewish customs, a person is not allowed to receive any benefit from acts that are part of idol worship or which aids idol worshippers. The Hindu religion is based on idol worship and therefore the hair that is offered to these idols is not really suitable for Jewish use. As an alternate many people choose kosher wigs of real human from Europe, where hair is often sold for various needs.

This debate first came to light in the last century and rabbis took it upon themselves to find out how exactly the hair is harvested. They found that the hair is cut not as part of religious ceremony but more as an offshoot of it. They therefore ruled that it was alright to use hair of Indian origin. However, a decade or so ago, a new set of rabbis, revisited the issue and found that it would be better to rule against the use of Indian hair because it could possibly give off the impression that it is dedicated to idol worship.

Today there are still a large number of Jewish centres that do make use of Indian hair. The main reason for this is a definitive understanding of Hindu rituals. There are still several Jews even in Israel who continue to use this hair while another faction follow the stricter interpretation of the rules which prohibits their use.