How Should a Woman Clean Herself after Relieving Herself?

Hanafi Fiqh

Answered by Ustadh Sufyan Qufi


I have read online that cleaning yourself from impurities can be done with tissues only, even if the impurity is not only in the private part. Is this true?

Because as a woman, when I urinate, the urine spreads to my inner thigh sometimes or to my back passage, and I clean it with toilet paper, but then I have to get in the shower and wash. But if using tissues is enough, that would really help me.


In the name of Allah, Most Compassionate, Most Merciful,

I pray this finds you in the best of states.

Short Answer

In summary, to answer your question straightforwardly, you don’t have to use toilet paper after urinating if the urine doesn’t spread beyond the point of exit.

If urine spreads over your inner thighs, you must wash it with water.

If urine spreads over the rear part, it is sunna to remove it. Toilet paper, in this case, is enough, but water is better. [Shurunbulali, Maraqi al-Falah]


The process of ensuring that there are no traces of urine at the point of exit is called “istibra’.”

The duty to perform istibra’ is only incumbent upon men. Women don’t have to perform istibra’ to be able to pray a valid prayer afterward. A woman simply needs to wait for a little after urinating, and that’s it. [Ibn Abidin, Radd al-Muhtar]

As for “istinja’,” which is cleaning the rear point of exit by using water or stones (in our time, toilet paper), there are no differences between men and women. The duty is the same. It is sunna to remove the filth at the exit point as long as the area covered by filth is less than a circle with a diameter of 5 cm. Toilet paper is enough for this, but water is better. If the filth crosses this circle, then it is obligatory to remove it with water.  [Ibid]

If urine crosses the point of exit and spreads on your skin (such as the inner thighs), then it is obligatory to remove it with water if the area covered by the urine is more than a circle with a diameter of 5 cm. The prayer in this state will be invalid.

If it is less than that, it will be prohibitively disliked, and thus sinful, to pray without removing it with water. Nonetheless, the prayer will be valid.

There is one exception to the ruling above. If the urine spreads over the rear point of the exit then it is sunna to remove this urine. Praying while not removing the urine from this area is valid.

And Allah knows best.


[Ustadh] Sufyan Qufi
Checked and Approved by Shaykh Faraz Rabbani

Ustadh Sufyan Qufi is an advanced seeker of knowledge, originally from Algeria, who grew up in France. He began searching far and wide for answers to the fundamental questions of life and was disappointed at the answers he found.

Then he connected with various traditional teachers and gradually connected with SeekersGuidance. He embarked on his journey of learning through the various teachers at SeekersGuidance, including his mentor Shaykh Faraz Rabbani.

He studied numerous texts in Islamic Law, Theology, Hadith, and other areas with Shaykh Faraz Rabbani and other teachers, including Shaykh Abdurrahman al-Sha‘ar, Shaykh Ali Hani, and others.

He is an active instructor at SeekersGuidance and answers questions through the SeekersGuidance Answers Service.