I heard that Muslims are not allowed permanent tattoos on the body because it hinders water from reaching the skin. Hence making the Wudhu and Ghusl never valid.

Please quote some references in your answers.

  • Well done, you asked indeed an interesting question which unfortunately many of youth are doing that without paying attention to its Islamic problem. Actually I assume it could be considered as quite a constructive and beneficial question. Consequently hopefully youth pay attention to it carefully. Commented May 30, 2015 at 5:55

2 Answers 2


There is no need of reference from hadith or Quran for this issue.

If one's wudu/ghusl will be invalid , then his/her prayers will be invalid.

So, not-only tatto any other things like nail polish which hinder water from reaching the skin would never be allowed in Islam.

Most of the scholars said that tattoo is not allowed since it is a way of changing the creation of Allah.

References regarding tatoos are not allowed in Islam:

  • From the hadiths that you mentioned, it seems like this tatooing is forbidden for women only. Is it so?
    – goto
    Commented Jul 11, 2013 at 10:58
  • 1
    With something like a plaster cast covering skin, wudu/ghusl are valid by wiping water over the cast. So logically, you might be able to take wudu with a tattoo as well. However, the given hadiths do a good job of pointing out that tattoos are forbidden, at least for women.
    – Muz
    Commented Jul 11, 2013 at 12:49
  • 2
    but tatoo is ink under skin, it does not hinder skin being cleaned.
    – user2350
    Commented Jul 12, 2013 at 1:37
  • 4
    "Most of the scholars said that tattoo is not allowed since it is a way of changing the creation of Allah." -- isn't the circumcision even more of "a way of changing the creation of Allah." ??
    – amphibient
    Commented Dec 21, 2013 at 15:14
  • 1
    @amphibient, if an action that changes the creation of Allah is an order from Allah, that should be done. Commented Dec 23, 2013 at 4:43

Having tattoos is not haram in Islam (from a shiite perspective, afaik).

As for ghusl and wudu being invalid because water does not reach the part of skin having tattoo is a misconception.

From Wikipedia article on tattoo (emphasis mine):

... inserting indelible ink into the dermis layer of the skin ...

dermis (part of the skin) is below the surface not on top of the skin.enter image description here (Source: Skin)

Therefore water does reach the part of the skin having tattoo.,

On the other hand, temporary tattoo (henna/mehndi, Decal-style, etc) could be problematic because, if I'm not wrong, it inhibits water from reaching the skin and therefore would be advisable to not have. Even then it's not that it's not allowed to have, just that you'll have to remove it in case you want to do wudu and/or ghusl.

Now, to back-up the above with a ruling (although indirect):

If a verse of the holy Qur'an or Name of the Almighty Allah is written or tattooed on the body of a person then such a person while doing Wudhu or Ghusl, will be required to pour water on that part without touching the writing.

Fatwa of Ayatollah al-Sayyid 'Ali al-Husayni al-Sistani

This fatwa proves the fact the Wudu can be performed when one has a tattoo.

I am unsure about henna/mehndi (temporary tattoo) because it is widely practiced among the Muslim population of the Subcontinent and Middle-East, so I am guessing there would be a different ruling for it due mehndi's material properties. Same could be the case for pen ink because the above stated fatwa also mentions written.

  • so tattoos which do not have images of animals are allowed ryt? like some design which are not of living things... ryt? Commented Apr 4, 2015 at 7:51
  • @servantofWiser cannot say for sure. (I think it is permissible irrespective of it being living thing or not) Commented Apr 4, 2015 at 15:10
  • well I think we must think twice before drawing living things :) Commented Apr 4, 2015 at 16:03
  • Tatoo not allowed because it changing the creation of Allah.
    – AzizSM
    Commented Apr 30, 2015 at 17:33

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