Dazzling Arabic Mehndi Designs
Henna is a form of temporary tattoo that usually lightens and comes off within a week or two. Word ‘Henna’ gains its origin from Arabic language where it refers to a plant from which Mehndi/Henna is prepared.
The leaves are grinded and mixed with some synthetic elements that give it a long lasting colour and a fresh fragrance. Mehndi is packed in cone shaped bags that allow only a thin stream of paste to flow out smoothly from the nozzle. Mehndi experts use this cone to form attractive and mesmerizing patterns.
Application of mehndi
Mehndi is considered to be a natural herb and its application in dying hair, nails, palms, feet, back of shoulders, protecting skin, healing wounds, preventing oneself from the glare of sun, dying fabric and painting ornaments is widely accepted and practiced. Mehndi is believed to soften skin, nurture hair and keep off the lines and wrinkles.
Mehndi designs in Arabic culture
Mehndi or Henna is an integral part of Arabic culture. In Arab world, applying mehndi has been a ritual since millions of years. It is a primary component of their festivals. Arabic mehndi designs are particularly the most popular ones because of their simple yet captivating motifs. The theme behind Arabic mehndi designs is to express triumph, bliss and love.
They portray peace, beauty and inner joy, especially among brides, who actively use mehndi on ‘Henna Night’ which is a custom in Arabic weddings. Bridal make-up is never complete until bride’s arms, hands and feet are covered with fascinating and intriguing mehndi designs.
Mehndi pattern on hands and feet
Mehndi designs have a wide range from plain and simple to interwoven and complex. Some patterns cover entire hand while some extend from lateral or medial margins to the tip of index or little finger, forming a titled lined motif and leaving the rest of the palm. With feet, tips of toes along with lateral and medial edges of dorsal surface are covered with a proper design while the ventral surface is either dyed completely with Mehndi or totally left off.
Typical Arabic mehndi designs
Arabic mehndi designs comprise of flowers and leaves that are drawn and shaped in a manner that is interwoven and merged to such an extent that it is hard to tell a petal of flower from a leaf. Flowers and leaves are then filled with filling lines, shades, glitter, dots or smaller flowers and leaves, which again merge into one another forming intricate beautiful patterns.
Edges are kept round and smooth in most countries except in Egypt where triangular patterns with sharp corners are preferred. In Lebanon, Kuwait and Iraq, mehndi designs are kept bold and with thick outlines and complete filling. In Syria, the most practiced Mehndi design is the one that appears to be a blooming flower emerging from the centre of palm and radiating to the sides. This central flower is then decorated with additional leaves and fine touches to make it more charismatic.
Mehndi is the pride of Arabic brides and a growing form of body art in western countries. With its magnetic designs and natural harmless ingredients, this body art is flourishing incessantly.