The Fatwa Center of Al-Azhar, the top institution in the world of Sunni Islam, said that tattoos may be permissible within Islamic law in only two cases:
The first is “If tattoos are prescribed as a treatment for adiseases, with an urgent need for tattooing so that the patient does not find a permissible alternative, and the tattoo’s intervention was for the purpose of restoring the creation to its nature, and its action was as much as removing the damage. The harm in Islamic Sharia may be removed by a similar harm if there is a necessity that calls for it, because necessities allow prohibitions.”
As for the second case, if the tattoo is temporary “on the surface of the outer skin, whether with henna, or with non-permanent markers, that is easy to remove, because this type of tattoo is not permanent and easy to remove,” according to the Fatwa Center.
Azhar explained the dangers of tattooing on the skin and its contribution to blood-borne diseases such as hepatitis, AIDS and other skin diseases.
And it stressed another reason for the prohibition of tattoos is that it distorts the human form.