Sunnah method of washing the limbs in wudhu

Answered according to Hanafi Fiqh by

Q: During wudhu, is it necessary that when I wash my limbs, I should wash them from above downwards (i.e. if I am washing my face I should wash it from forehead to chin, and if I am washing my hands, I should wash it from my hands to the elbow)? There have been occasions where, for example, I started washing my hands from the elbow downwards towards my hand (or I washed my face in a manner that the chin was washed first and the forehead was washed later), and now I am concerned that my wudhu was void since I didn’t maintain the order of ‘top to


A: The wudhu is valid. However the Sunnah method of washing the hands is that one commences from the palms going up to the elbows and when washing the face once commences from the forehead going down to the chin.

And Allah Ta’ala (الله تعالى) knows best.

يَا أَيُّهَا الَّذِينَ آمَنُوا إِذَا قُمْتُمْ إِلَى الصَّلَاةِ فَاغْسِلُوا وُجُوهَكُمْ وَأَيْدِيَكُمْ إِلَى الْمَرَافِقِ وَامْسَحُوا بِرُءُوسِكُمْ وَأَرْجُلَكُمْ إِلَى الْكَعْبَيْنِ ﴿المائدة: ٦﴾

ومن السنن البداءة من رءوس الأصابع في اليدين والرجلين كذا في فتح القدير وهكذا في المحيط (الفتاوى الهندية 1/ 8)

ويبدأ في غسل الوجه من أعلاه كذا في النهر الفائق (الفتاوى الهندية 1/ 9)

Answered by:

Mufti Zakaria Makada

Checked & Approved:

Mufti Ebrahim Salejee (Isipingo Beach)

This answer was collected from, where the questions have been answered by Mufti Zakaria Makada (Hafizahullah), who is currently a senior lecturer in the science of Hadith and Fiqh at Madrasah Ta’leemuddeen, Isipingo Beach, South Africa.

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