The Prophet (SAW) used to wash his head with khitmi

CategoriesHadith Answers [125]

Fatwa ID: 02355

Answered by: Maulana Mujahid Hussain


A’isha (RA) narrated that the Prophet (SAW) used to wash his head with khatami (marshmallows) and he was in the state of janabah and he did not pour water over it.

(ch Ghusl, Hadith 409 MaktabahRahmania)

What modern day ruling can be deduced from this Hadith.


بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Perhaps the hadith you are referring to is

قال الإمام أبو داود حَدَّثَنَا مُحَمَّدُ بْنُ جَعْفَرِ بْنِ زِيَادٍ، حَدَّثَنَا شَرِيكٌ، عَنْ قَيْسِ بْنِ وَهْبٍ، عَنْ رَجُلٍ، مِنْ بَنِي سُوَاءَةَ بْنِ عَامِرٍ عَنْ عَائِشَةَ، عَنِ النَّبِيِّ صلى الله عليه وسلم أَنَّهُ كَانَ يَغْسِلُ رَأْسَهُ بِالْخِطْمِيِّ وَهُوَ جُنُبٌ يَجْتَزِئُ بِذَلِكَ وَلاَ يَصُبُّ عَلَيْهِ الْمَاءَ

Aishah ( رضي الله عنها )said:

The Messenger of Allah (May peace be upon him) used to wash his head with marsh-mallow while he was in the state of Janabah. It was sufficient for him and he did not pour water upon it.[1]

Firstly what is meant is the powder from the marsh mellow plant known as Althaea officinalis

Secondly what is meant is the Prophet (May peace be upon Him) would mix the Khatmi with water and then wash with it. Then afterwards he would not use water.

This is what Al Khattabi mentions in his commentary of sunan Abu dawood

(Ma’aalim Sunan Volume 1 page 169 print Darul Maarifah)

Likewise this is what Sheikh Khaleel Ahmad Sahanpoori mentioned in his Bazlul Majhood

( بذل المجهود  page 185 volume 2 print Qadimi Kutub Khana)

This is also what Allama Ain’nee mentions in his commentary of Sunan Abi Dawood

(Sharh Sunan Abi Dawood volume 2 page 14 print Maktabtur Rasheed) here is the Arabic text

This is also what Imam Muhammad Khatab As Subkee mentions in his commentary of Sunan Abu Dawood

Here is the Arabic text

قوله كان يغسل رأسه الخ) أى كان صلى الله تعالى عليه وعلى آله وسلم يغسل رأسه بالماء مصاحبا للخطمىّ لإزالة ما علق برأسه من عرق ونحوه تعليما للأمة ويكتفى بذلك ولا يستعمل بعده ماء غير مختلط يخص به الغسل

What we learn is the following

1. The permissibility of using soap in water to have a shower or bath. It is a custom now to have a bath with the bathtub full whilst water is mixed with soap. So this would be permissible.

2. When we wash our hand using hand wash or soap  and we mix water with it , it is not necessary to wash the hands a second time with separate water.

3. Having a bath using only pure water in not necessary. If the water is mixed with a cleansing agent that would be sufficent.

Only Allah Knows Best.

Written by Maulana Mujahid Hussain

Checked and approved by Mufti MohammedTosir Miah 

Darul Hadith Birmingham

[1]Sunan Abi dawood Hadith number 256 Darussalam print.


About the author