Halacha » Tevila – Immersion in a Mikvah

Tevila – Immersion in a Mikvah

After completing the chafifa, a woman must immerse herself in the mikvah. To properly immerse in the mikvah, a woman must be completely under the water, in a way that the water touches all her skin and hair at once. To best achieve this, a woman should stand with her legs spread slightly, arms extended, and fingers relaxed and slightly separated. Water does not have to enter the mouth, nor does she have to open her eyes. However, it is important not to clench the eyelids or lips when immersing.

After immersing one time in the mikvah, the woman makes a bracha. Some Sefardim have a custom to make the bracha while still in a robe, prior to immersing the first time. The bracha is ברוך אתה ה’ אלהינו מלך העולם אשר קדשנו במצותיו וצונו על הטבילה. (Baruch ata adonai eloheinu melech ha’olam asher kideshanu bemitzvotav vetzivanu al ha’tevilah) There are different customs regarding if, and how many additional times a woman should immerse after reciting the bracha.

When making the bracha a woman should be in water that is chest height. The woman should cross her arms to separate the upper body from the lower body. One should avoid looking into the water while saying the bracha. Some have a custom to cover their hair while making the bracha.