Sheikh M. S. Al-Munajjid, a prominent Saudi Muslim lecturer and author, states: According to the Sunnah of the Prophet (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him), if you want to make ablution you have to do the following:
1-You must have the intention of purifying yourself and removing impurity. The intention should not be spoken out loudly, for its place is in the heart. This applies to all acts of worship.
2-You should say Bismillaah.
3-Then you should wash your hands three times
4-Then you should rinse your mouth three times, which means to swirl the water around inside your mouth, and rinse your nose three times, which means to blow the water out and to use the left hand to remove the water from your nose.
5-You should wash you face three times, from the hairline to the jawbone and chin, and from ear to ear. A man should wash the hair of his beard because it is part of the face. If his beard is thin he has to wash it inside and out, and if it is thick and covers the skin, he should wash the surface of it only and run his wet fingers through it.
6-Then you should wash your arms up to the elbows three times. The arm extends from the fingertips, including the nails, to the lower part of the upper arm. It is essential to remove anything stuck to the hands before washing them, such as dough, mud, paint, etc, that could prevent the water from reaching the skin.
7-Then after that you should wipe you head and ears once with fresh water, not the water left over from washing your arms. The way in which the head is to be wiped is that you put your wet hands at the front of your head and bring them to the back of your head, then bring them back to the place where you started. Then put your index fingers in your ears and wipe the back of the ears with your thumbs. With regard to a woman’s hair, she should wipe it, whether it is loose or braided from the front of her head to the roots of the hair at the nape of her neck, but she does not have to wipe the entire length of her hair.
8-Then you should wash your feet three times up to the ankles, namely the bones at the bottom of the leg.
The evidence for that is the hadith related by Humran, the freed slave of ‘Uthmaan, who said that ‘Uthmaan ibn ‘Affaan (may Allaah be pleased with him) called for water to do wudu’. He washed his hands three times, then he rinsed his mouth and nose, then he washed his face three times, then he washed his right arm up to the elbow three times, then he washed his left arm likewise. Then he wiped his head, then he washed his right foot up to the ankle three times, then he washed his left foot likewise. Then he said, “I saw the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) doing wudoo’ as I have done it, then the Messenger of Allah (peace and blessings of Allah be upon him) said, “Whoever does wudoo’ as I have done it, then prays two rak’ahs in which he focuses completely on his prayer, his previous sins will be forgiven.” (Narrated by Muslim)”
Regarding how to perform ghusl, Sheikh Ahmad Kutty, a senior lecturer and Islamic scholar at the Islamic Institute of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, states:
“The proper method of ghusl (ritual bath) involves the following steps:
1. Make the niyyah (intention) to perform ghusl for purification.
2. Wash your private parts thoroughly with water.
3. Perform wudu’ (ablution) except for washing of your feet, which you can do later while bathing the body.
4. Wash the entire body, starting with your head and the right side, followed by the left.
5. It is preferred that the whole body be washed three times. The minimum is once.”