Coming of age girls, women who are about to marry and women on various festivals have one thing in common, their craze for mehndi. No Hindu wedding is ever complete without a mehndi decorated bride hands. Mehndi is considered sacred in Hindu tradition. It is used for women’s palms and feet. Practiced mainly in India and Pakistan, mehndi or henna is the application of as a temporary form of skin decoration, popularized in the West by Indian cinema and entertainment industry. Many Indian songs can be found out about mehndi tradition glorifying its importance in wedding rituals. All the women of bride’s family decorate their hands with henna.
There are various designs of mehndi that are popular namely Arabic mehndi, Indian full hand mehndi and Pakistani mehndi design. Mehndi design has become a temporary tattoo and that makes beautiful looking hands and legs. The leaves of the henna plant contain a red-orange dye molecule, lawsone, which has an affinity for bonding with protein, and has been used to dye skin, hair, fingernails.
Henna leaves are usually dried and ground into a powder, which is mixed with water to make a paste and applied using a variety of techniques. The henna that is put on the skin is left for a few hours at least; after it is removed, the pattern continues to darken for approximately three days. According to folklore it is believed that when a bride has mehndi done for her wedding, the darker the color of the mehndi, the more her mother-in-law loves her. A good deeply-colored design is a sign of good luck for the couples that have a married life ahead of them. It is common for the names of the bride and groom to be hidden in the mehndi design; and the wedding-night cannot commence until the groom has found the names. Also a bride is not expected to perform too many household chores until her wedding mehndi has faded.
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