Skip navigation

Art comes in many forms. One that is intriguing to me is the art of Mehndi (pronounced May-hen-Dee). Mehndi is the application of henna  as a temporary form of skin decoration in countries such as India, Pakistan, and Morrocco. Henna is usually applied for special occasions such as weddings and celebrations. It is usually drawn on the palms and feet, where the color will be darkest because the skin contains higher levels of keratin which binds temporarily to lawsone, the colorant of henna. 

Henna is procured from a shrub, Lawsonia inermis. The leaves are gathered green from the tree and placed in the shade to dry. They are then pounded and sifted to obtain a very fine powder. The compound is kneaded with water to make a paste. 

The henna paste, or mud, is sold in cones. The henna can be applied in beautiful patterns using this small plastic bag (cone) with a small hole pricked into one corner. This bag acts as a mini pastry-decorating tube. When the henna mud is applied, one is directed to keep it on the skin overnight, or for several hours. The longer the mud remains, the longer the color will last. It helps to keep the mud a little moist with a mixture of lemon juice and sugar. The reddish-brown color of henna begins to fade within two days.  It usually last about 7 days. 

I have the opportunity to be ‘hennaed” twice by a very talented artist. I included a couple of photographs taken by my nephew, Lucas. 

A good reference for all things henna is




"Our opinions do not really blossom into fruition until we have expressed them to someone else.” Mark Twain

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: