2nd February 2015
السلام عليكم و رحمة الله و بركاته
Question: I have a pigmentation on my face due to having vitiligo as a child. At present I cover it with makeup but I perform Wudu without removing it. I have been wanting to have medical tattooing done on it so it would match the colour of my skin but I am unsure if this is possible. I would be grateful if this question can be answered for me so it is clear if it is possible for me to get done. Thank you
الجواب حامداً و مصلياً
In the name of Allāh, the Most Gracious, the Most Merciful
Medical tattooing is a process of inserting hypo-allergenic pigments cream over the skin. It involves colour tattooing to match the colour of the skin, commonly known as skin camouflaging. This process is used to treat skin disorder such as white patches on skin, like vitiligo and other impairments such as skin burns and grafts, scarring and so on. In applying skin camouflage creams (like pigment cream) on to the skin, it helps the white patches blend in with the rest of the skin. The creams used match the natural skin colour. If patches appear on any visible parts of the body such as face, pigment cream enhances the physical appearance by reducing the appearance of the patches, burns, scars and so on. However, according to reliable experts, the application of the cream is not permanent hence, the colour of the cream eventually fades away resurfacing the patches, scars and burns.
Depending on the extent of the patches on your face, I would advise you to consult your local GP whether they recommend it to you or not for medical reasons such as, psychological distress which is effecting your daily life due to its obvious exposure.
From an Islamic viewpoint, you must ensure that the substance applied to cover the patches allows water to penetrate through to the skin. It is essential for the water to reach the skin during wudhu and fardh ghusl, otherwise the Salāh performed in that state becomes invalid. If the substance is penetrable for water and the doctor advises you to undergo such treatment then Islamically there is no harm. If it is not penetrable (or contains impure ingredients) then you must avoid it altogether and use alternative penetrable substances to cover the patches on the face.
[Allãh Knows Best]
Written by (Mufti) Abdul Waheed
Answer Attested by Shaykh Mufti Saiful Islam
JKN Fatawa Department
Further information on vitiligo treatment and medical tattooing procedure can be obtained by clicking on to the following links. When contacting the clinic on the following links, it is worth inquiring whether the substance contains impure ingredients or not. In the case it does then it should be avoided altogether and use pure and penetrable alternative substance.
 Fatawa Hindiyyah, Book of Taharat, chapter on Wudhu, vol 1, p.6
فِي فَتَاوَى مَا وَرَاءَ النَّهْرِ إنْ بَقِيَ مِنْ مَوْضِعِ الْوُضُوءِ قَدْرُ رَأْسِ إبْرَةٍ أَوْ لَزِقَ بِأَصْلِ ظُفْرِهِ طِينٌ يَابِسٌ أَوْ رَطْبٌ لَمْ يَجُزْ وَإِنْ تَلَطَّخَ يَدُهُ بِخَمِيرٍ أَوْ حِنَّاءٍ جَازَ