Women appearing in television programs will not be allowed to wear make-up because it is against Islamic law, or sharia, media on Wednesday quoted the head of Iran’s state television as saying.
"Make-up by women during television programs is illegal and against Islamic sharia law ... There should not be a single case of a woman wearing make-up during a program," Ezatollah Zarghami was quoted as saying by the reformist Etemad newspaper.
Zarghami, a former member of the elite Revolutionary Guards who has been re-appointed by supreme leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, also ordered that women guests should "preferably" be hosted by women.
Speaking at a conference of network directors, he also called for cutting down on music during programs and urged his staff to take a cue from Western action movies, which have "excellent and calm music."
"I do not mean that we should become like them, but we should use positive points. Therefore we (should) put on the agenda the reduction and refining of music," he said.
"As of today, you in the production department should launch new supervisory methods ... I do not want to tell you to filter, but you should be vigilant that nothing inappropriate happens," Zarghami said.
Zarghami told directors they should also prohibit "repulsive jokes" between men and women on television or radio, Etemad and Fars news agency quoted him as saying.
When he reappointed Zarghami to a second term last month, Khamenei reportedly told him it was essential to make an "outstanding representation of morality, religion, hopefulness and awareness" in state media programs.
The Islamic republic's state television has eight TV channels and 15 radio stations.
It has seen different periods of strict or relaxed dress and make-up codes.
Women on television do not expose their hair, but have been indulging in heavy make-up in recent years.
Television is under close scrutiny and observes strict guidelines to an extent that even some local movies have been censored before being aired.