ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Art of Mehndi - Henna Body Art and Temporary Tattoo Designs

Updated on August 8, 2015
lady rain profile image

Lady Rain works as a daytime stock trader and writes about crafts and hobbies. She likes travelling and making papercraft models.

Henna Art
Henna Art | Source
Lawsonia Inermia, the henna plant.
Lawsonia Inermia, the henna plant. | Source

What is Henna

Henna is a natural dye that comes from a plant called Lawsonia Inermis. When the leaves of the plant are dried, they are called henna. Henna plants grow in warm countries like India, Pakistan, the Middle East and Africa.

If you are after a temporary tattoo on the body, henna is quick and easy to apply on the skin. The henna dye is natural and safe to use. It has a reddish brown colour and it can be used on the skin, hair and for colouring fabrics. Henna is also known as Mehndi in India and Pakistan.

Henna design on the palm.
Henna design on the palm. | Source

Henna Art

Mehndi is a traditional body art of temporary designs and tattoos. This form of art is found in cultures in South Asia, the Mediterranean, the Middle East, and Northern Africa.

The decoration of body art can be seen in weddings and other social ceremonies. It is a symbol of beauty, joy and luck when used on these special occasions.

Henna tattoos and designs have become a fashion trend in the western countries, where people wear henna decorations on their skin for fun and look beautiful.

Intricate designs on a bride's hands before her wedding.
Intricate designs on a bride's hands before her wedding. | Source

The Dangers of p-Phenylenediamine (PPD)

PPD is used in the manufacture of hair dye and it is a banned substance in many countries. It is a dangerous man-made chemical dye that stains the skin black. It will cause a severe allergic reaction and permanent scarring for people with sensitive skin.

PPD sensitivity is lifelong. Once you are sensitized with PPD, you will have sensitive reactions to many other chemicals. The allergy will worsen every time you come in contact with the chemicals.

How Safe is Henna

Always use natural henna powder. Henna painting is safe if all the ingredients used are natural. The colour of natural henna varies from coffee brown to brownish red colour on the skin. There is no such thing as a natural black henna!

If the henna stain turns out to be black, then the henna dye has been mixed with a dangerous chemical called p-Phenylenediamine (PPD).

Just be cautious if you are buying ready-made henna ink. Always insist on natural henna products.

Henna powder for sale in the Middle East.
Henna powder for sale in the Middle East. | Source

Making the Henna Paste

Natural henna powder has to be mixed into a dark coloured paste before it can be used for making temporary tattoos on the skin. Essential oils, citrus juice, tea or water is added to make a thick henna paste.

Henna powder can be stored in a cool, dark place for a couple of years. After the henna powder has been mixed into a paste, it can be kept chilled in the refrigerator for about four weeks.

Decorations on Hands

Henna Art
Henna Art | Source
The Art of Mehndi
The Art of Mehndi | Source

How to Create Henna Tattoos

Henna stains the upper layer of the skin when it is applied to the skin. The temporary tattoo designs can be drawn with a mylar cone filled with henna paste. A squeeze bottle with a small nozzle, a paint brush or a toothpick can also be used.

To make a tattoo design, apply henna paste to the skin by drawing a nice pattern and let the paste remain on the skin for as long as possible. Do not wash the paste off with water. Peel off or gently scrape off the dried paste.

It can take somewhere between 30 minutes to 2 hours to dry depending on the body temperature and surrounding temperature. The size and complexity of the tattoo design also affects the drying process.

When the dried paste is removed, a brownish stain is left on the skin. This colour will darken over the next couple of days, but will eventually fade off after a week of wash.


Freshly applied dark coloured henna paste on the skin. The paste is removed when it is dry, to reveal a brownish red stain on the skin.
Freshly applied dark coloured henna paste on the skin. The paste is removed when it is dry, to reveal a brownish red stain on the skin. | Source

What do you think of henna tattoos?

See results

How Long Does A Henna Tattoo Last

Most henna tattoos last about a week but a good quality henna tattoo can up to three weeks. It also depends on the skin of the person and body temperature. The longer the paste is left on to dry, the better the henna stain will stay on the skin.

The temporary tattoo will wash off more quickly if it is subjected to frequent washing, soaking and scrubbing. The stain will fade gradually as you wash with soap and water. To prolong the stain, apply lip balm over the tattoo.

How To Make Your Own Henna Dye

First of all you must have some henna powder to make the henna paste. If you can't get henna powder from the shops, natural henna powder is available online from eBay and Amazon.com.

The following video shows how to make henna paste and then fill a cone with the paste.

How to make your own henna cones

Sample Tattoo Design

Source

Tattoo Designing for Beginners

Before you start applying the henna paste on your skin, practice tracing some tattoo designs on a sheet of paper. After you have created the design you like, copy and draw the design directly on the skin with a Stabilo Aquarellable pencil (or any washable marker or even an eyebrow pencil). Finally, just apply henna over the design, it should be quick and easy.

With a bit of practice, you should be able to draw your henna designs directly on the skin without using the marker.

Henna Tattoos for Beginners

Source

© 2014 lady rain

Comments

Submit a Comment

  • Glimmer Twin Fan profile image

    Claudia Mitchell 

    3 years ago

    Oh these are lovely. I've always wanted to get a henna tattoo.

  • profile image

    tylenethorne 

    4 years ago

    the art of Henna is so unique and beautiful,

  • sujaya venkatesh profile image

    sujaya venkatesh 

    4 years ago

    cute

working

This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

Show Details
Necessary
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Features
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Marketing
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Statistics
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)