Traditional Mehndi - Henna
Unlike real tattoos, henna tattoos are definitely temporary and when applied, you will feel no pain at all. The result you will get is similar to a real, permanent and painful tattoo, but it will fade as time goes by.
Henna tattoos are also popular not only during summer to show off, but also in parties. Some parties have henna art booths where an artist creates skin art for guests. Henna tattoo artists at parties or events have an album of sample designs you can browse. These artists are very talented and the process is safe and fun. There are a lot of designs for henna tattoos you can find online, or if you have an artistic friend, request for a personalized design to make the tattoo fit your personality.
Henna is considered an herb, and has long been known to have healing qualities. It is used topically and usually not ingested or inhaled. In ancient times it was applied to the skin surface for such ailments as headaches, stomach pains, burns (including sunburns), open wounds, as a fever reducer, athlete's foot and even the prevention of hair loss. It is also a sunblock and has been used on the noses of animals to prevent sunburn. Another use of henna would be to apply it to goat skin bags, after they have been salt-cured. It "insect-proofs" or "moth-proofs" the bags by making the skin poisoned or inedible.
Henna is traditionally used for special occasions like holidays, birthdays and weddings in Africa, Pakistan, India, and the Middle East. The most popular of the traditions is the Mehndi (henna) Night where the bride, her family, relatives and friends get together to celebrate the wedding to come. The night is filled with games, music and dance performances that may have been rehearsed for months prior to the event by those closest to the bride while the bride gets extensive henna patterns done on her hands and feet that go to her elbows and sometimes, knees. The bridal patterns can take hours and are often done by multiple henna artists. The guests will usually receive small designs (tattoos) on the backs of their hands as well.
Today, brides prefer to have their henna done prior to the mehndi night so that they can enjoy the festivities and also have a deeper stain by the wedding day.
Tradition holds that for as long as the henna stain appears on the bride, she doesn't have to do any housework! Also, the darker the stain the better the marriage and the better the mother-in-law will be! So you can imagine why the bride would want the stain to come our dark and last as long as possible!
Henna is an ancient form of blessings and good will which makes it a perfect way to bless a child to come. It's also a wonderful treat to be pampered a few weeks before the delivery with gorgeous belly designs! Meditative for the mom-to-be and fun and entertaining for the guests!
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