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Henna Preparation & Application Guide

(for home-made or ready-to-use paste tube)

What is Henna or (Mehndi)?

Henna (Lawsonia inermis)

Gorgeous tropical flowering bush whose leaves contain a yellow dye known as henna.

Uses: The dye has numerous cosmetic uses including as a temporary tattoo.

Plant Cultivation: Small, arid tropical bush, usually only several feet tall. Henna is native to hot tropical regions, so the plant will not tolerate any frost, but can tolerate very hot and dry conditions. It is fast growing, and can be kept as a container or semi-annual plant.

Propagation: By seed.

Origin & Distribution: Native to Asia, North Africa and the Middle East

Related Species: Lythraceae, Henna (Lawsonia inermis)

Products Available:

Henna powders, Henna Oil, Henna Kits, Ready Henna Pastes, Temporary Henna-style tattoos

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There are various methods used in preparing home-made henna pastes. For example, first "sieve" the powder through something like a "tea strainer" to make it really fine and smooth. Then add a little lime juice and water [some people also add normal black tea (without the tea leaves) instead of water]. The paste needs to be quite thick like a toothpaste or jam NOT thin or runny. And finally, leave the applied Henna on the skin for as long a period as possible - at least 3 or 4 hours BUT preferably overnight to get a darker colour ( use a poly bag or something to cover it up - overnight - to avoid staining other things - as Henna colours are rather permanent if they come into contact with other man-made materials.

How to Use:

Take powder as per your requirements, add water or black tea & some lemon juice to make paste (e.g. toothpaste consistency) at least one hour before applying. Apply boldly on arms, hands, feet, around navel or wherever wild you prefer - making your own intricate designs or patterns. Express yourself the way you want without fear - as it is not permanent. Use a thin plastic needle or a thin wooden needle-like stick e.g. match-stick to create your own designs & patterns. Use Henna Oil to pre-condition skin before applying Henna paste for better results. Use cotton wool or similar to apply a thin layer of Henna Oil to the body-part where Henna paste is to be applied. For home-made or ready-made henna paste tubes
Keep applied Henna paste for as long a period as possible to get a darker shade of colour - at least 4 hours or preferably overnight (use a poly bag or similar to cover up the applied paste - overnight - to avoid staining other things - as Henna colours are rather permanent if they come into contact with other man-made materials).
Wash off with cold water. Remember, Henna is NOT permanent and lasts anything upto 3 or 4 weeks only so GO AHEAD & EXPERIMENT. Practice Makes Perfect.

Some Designs & Patterns:


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