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Staying Trendy with Mehndi

Mehndi Through The Ages

Mehndi is an ancient and beautiful body art that has evolved throughout the ages to always stay on trend. From as long ago as 3000 BCE, henna has been used as personal cooling agent, paints, hair dye, and in the gorgeous tradition of mehndi – creating intricate and meaningful stain patterns with henna paste. Today the use of henna has grown to include different colors, glitter, and accessibility for everyone to try.

Henna is created from the dried leaves of a desert plant called Lawsonia inermis. When crushed, these leaves unleash a compound called lawsone which can create a deep, brown stain on your skin. By combining the leaf powder with a liquid base, the compound can stay on your skin longer to darken the resulting stain. Different regions use different bases to concoct the paste – like water, tea, lemon juice, and essential oils.


Photo by Shalina Jaffer from Mihenna

The first people to discover henna leaves smeared it across their whole palm because this desert plant creates a cooling effect on the wearer, which is longed for in the heat of the desert. From entirely covering the palm, to a circle of henna in the center, to tracing out shapes with a stick, wearing henna evolved from just a cooling component to an art. Shapes became more intricate and began to take on meaning. Artists could represent the nature around them or the wishes in their heart with a swirl of henna paste on their hand. Along with beauty, mehndi came to represent good luck and hopes for the future, especially for new brides.

In modern fashion, henna paste has been dyed all colors of the rainbow and even combined with glitter to create a futuristic reimagining of an ancient art. One way that mehndi was truly evolved to stay current with today’s DIY trends is by creating henna designs with sticker stencils. Sticker stencils allow beginner henna artists to show off their very own mehndi creations without devoting hours to practicing and perfecting the art. This modern convenience opens up body art to become a shared experience throughout the world. As mehndi becomes more accessible to everyone, this historic tradition fixes itself as a staple of personal fashion with yet another generation.


Photo by Shalina Jaffer from Mihenna

Modern Henna Stencils

Mehndi is branching out from a bridal accessory to a bold fashion statement that can be worn for a variety of occasions. Henna tattoos are now seen at bachelorette parties, kids’ birthdays, and especially festival venues. Anyone who wants to express themselves with body art can turn to henna sticker stencils for professional-looking mehndi. Henna stencils come in a variety of designs from traditional floral motifs to cartoonish temporary tattoos – there’s something for everyone’s personal style.


Photo by Elain Yao from Pexels

Henna sticker stencils work by having a design already cut out onto material with an adhesive back, which keeps the stencil in place to avoid smearing or smudging the henna paste. After fixing the adhesive to your skin, henna paste can be applied over top without concern for precision. Once the henna paste has dried as prescribed, the sticker stencil can be peeled off to reveal the henna tattoo with a perfectly shaped design. Oftentimes, you can find sticker stencils available in a henna kit, which includes everything needed to create gorgeous mehndi.

Adapting to current trends has allow the art of mehndi to survive for centuries and spread worldwide as a honored tradition. Increasing accessibility to the art through the ease of henna sticker stencils will allow it to continue to thrive as a sought-after form of personal expression.

Photo by Qazi Ikram Ul Haq from Pexels 

Krista is an American freelance writer living in India and observing women's beauty and fashion trends around the world.

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