Performing Masah on leather socks

Assalaamu alaykum. a) Can you explain the Sunnah method of performing Masah on Leather Socks.

b) A person on journey performs Wudhu with all its requisites and then puts on a pair of Leather Socks with intention for Masah. At the Airport Security check point he is asked to take off the Leather Socks. He takes off his Leather Socks and then puts them on again after passing the Security check point. Is his Wudhu valid or does he have to make a new Wudhu again? Jaza kallah.

Answer:

In the Name of Allah, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful.

As-salāmu ‘alaykum wa-rahmatullāhi wa-barakātuh.

 

In making Masah on leather socks, it is Fardh to wet the area equal to three fingers on the top of each leather sock. Masah will not be complete with less than this. The Sunnah method of making Masah is that it should be made with the palm-side of the hands and on the top of the leather sock. After wetting the hands with clean unused water, place them flat on the socks with the fingers slightly apart, draw the fingers of the right hand on the upper surface of the socks starting from the toes and ending at the foreleg (just above the ankle). The Masah should be done once only on each sock. The right hand should be used for the right foot and the left hand for the left foot.[1]

Whatever breaks Wudhu also breaks masah of the leather socks. In addition to this, removing the leather socks also breaks masah. If a person is in a state of Wudhu and he removes his leather socks, masah will break. He will have to wash both his feet again and there is no need to repeat the entire Wudhu. If the leather sock of only one foot was removed, it will be necessary to remove the other foot as well and to wash both feet. If however, the individual’s original (first) Wudhu remains intact until the sock is removed then there is no need to redo Wudhu nor is there any need to rewash the feet. 

Masah also breaks with the expiry of the period of masah. If the person is still in a state of Wudhu after the expiry of the period, then only the feet will have to be washed. There is no need to repeat the entire Wudhu. But if Wudhu has also broken, then after removing the leather socks, the entire Wudhu will have to be repeated[2].

 

Hence, in the enquired scenario, if you were in the state of Wudhu, you would only have to wash your feet, not redo entire Wudhu. If it was your original Wudhu upon which you wore the leather socks, then the socks may be worn again without requiring washing the feet.

Note: To make Masah on ordinary socks alone is not permissible. Conditions for validity of making Masah on socks are;
  • It must be possible to walk in them (without shoes) for more than three miles without them tearing.
  • They must be non-porous preventing water seeping through.
  • They must remain firm on the foreleg without being tied with laces, elastic, etc. They should not slip down while walking as ordinary socks do.

 

 

And Allah Ta’āla Knows Best

Mufti Arshad Ali

Darul Iftaa, Jaamia Madinatul Uloom (Trinidad)

www.fatwa-tt.com /www.jaamia.net

[1] بدائع الصنائع في ترتيب الشرائع (1/ 12)

وَأَمَّا مِقْدَارُ الْمَسْحِ، فَالْمِقْدَارُ الْمَفْرُوضُ هُوَ مِقْدَارُ ثَلَاثِ أَصَابِعَ طُولًا، وَعَرْضًا، مَمْدُودًا، أَوْ مَوْضُوعًا، وَعِنْدَ الشَّافِعِيِّ، الْمَفْرُوضُ هُوَ أَدْنَى مَا يَنْطَلِقُ عَلَيْهِ اسْمُ الْمَسْحِ، كَمَا قَالَ فِي مَسْحِ الرَّأْسِ، وَلَوْ مَسَحَ بِأُصْبُعٍ أَوْ أُصْبُعَيْنِ، وَمَدَّهُمَا حَتَّى بَلَغَ مِقْدَارَ ثَلَاثِ أَصَابِعَ، لَا يَجُوزُ عِنْدَنَا، خِلَافًا لِزُفَرَ كَمَا فِي مَسْحِ الرَّأْسِ، وَلَوْ مَسَحَ بِثَلَاثِ أَصَابِعَ مَنْصُوبَةٍ غَيْرِ مَوْضُوعَةٍ، وَلَا مَمْدُودَةٍ، لَا يَجُوزُ بِلَا خِلَافٍ بَيْنَ أَصْحَابِنَا، وَلَوْ مَسَحَ بِأُصْبُعٍ وَاحِدَةٍ ثَلَاثَ مَرَّاتٍ، وَأَعَادَهَا فِي كُلِّ مَرَّةٍ إلَى الْمَاءِ يَجُوزُ كَمَا فِي مَسْحِ الرَّأْسِ

Bahishti Zehwar

 

 

[2] بدائع الصنائع في ترتيب الشرائع (1/ 12)

(وَمِنْهَا) نَزْعُ الْخُفَّيْنِ، لِأَنَّهُ إذَا نَزَعَهُمَا فَقَدْ سَرَى الْحَدَثُ السَّابِقُ إلَى الْقَدَمَيْنِ، ثُمَّ إنْ كَانَ مُحْدِثًا، يَتَوَضَّأُ بِكَمَالِهِ، وَيُصَلِّي، وَإِنْ لَمْ يَكُنْ مُحْدِثًا يَغْسِلُ قَدَمَيْهِ لَا غَيْرُ، وَلَا يَسْتَقْبِلُ الْوُضُوءَ