We know there's a lot of stories about what makes the most beautiful, most dramatic henna design. We reached out to our experts to set us straight.
Myth: After the bridal mehndi application is completed, wrap the design in plastic bags or plastic wrap.
Fact: Wrapping the mehndi design (with paste on) in plastic is not a good idea because the skin will not be able to breathe and plastic causes sweating, which smudges the design. The best way to preserve an extensive application of mehndi is to tightly wrap the areas in toilet paper and secure with scotch tape. The bride can then sleep peacefully and the mehndi design stays intact.
Myth: Even if the mehndi falls off a few minutes after application, it will still produce a decent stain if you do not wash your hands.
Fact: Every effort should be made to keep the mehndi in contact with the skin for as long as possible. To help with this process, the henna artist should apply a solution of lemon juice and sugar on the mehndi design as soon as it is dry. If the mehndi is good quality and if the weather is hot, a decent stain can be produced by just keeping the paste on for two hours. If not, the paste should remain on the skin for at least four to six hours.
Myth: When the mehndi is dry, you can drive or do other work.
Fact: When the mehndi is dry, it is not a good idea to use the hands or feet while the mehndi paste is still on the skin. Constant movement will cause the mehndi to fall off, producing a lighter stain.
Myth: Lemon sugar application after the mehndi is dry will produce dark color.
Fact: Lemon sugar solution by itself does not darken the color. The solution helps the mehndi stay in contact with the skin for a longer period and hence a darker color becomes possible.
Myth: If the mehndi produces a dark color, the deeper the bond between the bride and her husband or mother-inlaw.
Fact: Just a superstition! If the mehndi paste is made properly with fresh mehndi powder and essential oils, and if the person getting the mehndi follows all the instructions, you will get a beautiful result.
Being well prepared for your bridal henna day, being aware of the facts concerning henna and knowing what to expect, will allow you to have a peaceful and enjoyable experience.
Henna images courtesy of Hiral Henna.