Wiping over the socks

Wiping over the socks is permitted as a substitute in washing the feet when performing wudhu (ablution) for men and women alike, even if the socks are of a thick material other than leather and may have laces.








For wiping over the socks to be permissible some conditions must be met:




  • Donning them after washing the feet, even if it may be before the completion of wudhu, but before coming across anything which breaks the wudh.
  • They must cover the ankles.
  • There should be a possibility of walking continuously in them, so wiping over socks of glass, wood and metal is not permitted.
  • Each sock must be free of any rip which exceeds the amount equivalent to 3 times the smallest toe of the foot.
  • They should remain on the feet without having to tie them.
  • They must be impermeable.
  • The one who wishes to wipe over the socks must have at last the Fardh (compulsory) amount of his foot to wipe over, so if the foot has been chopped off, and less than the Fardh (compulsory) amount remains, it won’t be wiped, even if the heel is present.


A local (one who is not traveling) may wipe for a day and night (24 hours), and a traveller for 3 days and nights (72 hours). The start of the period is from the time of Hadath (breaking the Wudhu) after donning the socks.


If a local (non-traveller) wipes, then travels before the completion of his period, he will complete the period of a traveller. And if a traveller becomes a local after he has wiped for 24 hours, he will remove them, otherwise he will complete 24 hours.


The compulsory wiping is the amount of three fingers from the smallest finger of the hand upon the upper front side of each foot. And its Sunnah is stretching the fingers spread out from the tip of the toes to the shin.


4 things Will break the wiping of the socks:

  • Everything which breaks the wudhu.
  • Removing a sock, even if most of the foot comes out to the shin of the sock.
  • The reaching of water to most of one of the two feet inside the sock.
  • The expiry of the period, if one does not fear losing his foot due to cold.


After the last three he will wash his feet only.


And wiping is not permissible upon a turban, a hat, a scarf or gloves.



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Tayyib HMC FInder

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