The Obligations In Ablution (Wuzu)
The following four (4) acts are obligatory in ablution:
Washing the entire face: that is from the top of the forehead to the bottom of the chin and from ear to ear. Water must flow over the entire skin area at least once. If the mustache or eyebrows have thick hair, it is obligatory only to wash the hair. If the hair is sparse, the skin must also be washed. Similarly, if the hair in the beard is not thick, the inner skin must be washed. The area around the lips which remains exposed in the natural state when the mouth is closed must also be washed.
Washing both hands, up to and including the elbows. Washing any body part means that at least two drops of water must have flowed over each and every spot of it (not leaving out any spot equal to the breadth of a hair). Simply wetting the body part or spreading water over it like oil, or the flowing of just a drop is not classified as “washing” – and will not complete the ablution or bath. All types of ornaments which are tight to the skin must be removed and the skin below it washed, as described above. If nail polish has been applied, ablution or bath cannot be complete without removing it. However, ablution or bath will be complete in cases where the thing remaining on the skin is such that it is continuously or sometimes required and to remove it causes a burden – whether such a thing is above or below the nails or on any other part of the body – or whether such a thing is hard and water does not reach the skin below it – such as dough on the hands of kneaders, paint on the hands of a painter, henna for women, ink for the writer, sand or mud for the laborer and kohl under the eyelids or ordinary dirt for the common man.
“Masah” (Stroking with wet hands) of one-fourth of the head: Hands should be wet for performing the “Masah” whether due to water remaining from washing the hands, or by wetting them with fresh water. If the hands remain wet after “Masah”, it will not suffice for “Masah” of any other body part.
Washing both feet: It is necessary to wash both feet fully – i.e. all sides of toes, inner parts of the toes, the top part of the toes, heels, soles, and the entire ankles. If water does not reach between the toes naturally, it is necessary to do “Khilaal”, i.e. pass the little finger between them to make the water reach there.