I am a henna artist working in Ottawa, Canada. My passion in life is art. I lived in India for 12 years, where I learned the “henna” body art. And, even though I’ve been doing this for more than ten years now, I still enjoy it as much as I did on my first day.
What is Henna:
At the simplest, Henna is a paste made out of crushed leaves and twigs of henna plant. The paste can also be made from dried leaves of the plant by mixing it with hot water. When this paste is applied on skin (just like writing from a marker) and left for few hours, it leaves orange to dark maroon stain in the skin which fades away in 5 to 14 days.
In more details, Henna is a plant (bionomial name – Lawsonia inermis) found and grown in South Asian and North African countries. It is used since ancient time to color skin, hair, fingernails, leather, and wool. The name Henna is also used for dye or paste derived from the leaves of the plant, and for the art of temporary tattooing from those paste.
What is Henna Art:
Henna art (or temporary tattoos), also called “mehndi”, are a type of temporary body decoration that are frequently used in Hindu and Arabic cultures, particularly on brides. Beautiful and intricate designs are painted on to the bride’s hands and feet which often extends up to the palms and legs. Frequently symbols of fertility and love such as peacocks and hearts are integrated into the elaborate designs. The groom’s initials are occasionally hidden within these designs.
This traditional art was not thought of as tattooing at all, until quite recently. In modern sense, Henna tattoos are more like cosmetics – a way of decorating the body for special occasions such as weddings, birthdays or any other similar events or celebrations. Henna art fades away in about a week or two. It is 100% natural and safe.