Henna has been used for thousands of years in South Asia, the Middle East, and Africa for its cooling properties, and also for decorative purposes. Henna is used to adorn the hands and feet of women and girls, especially during celebrations like weddings and holidays. For weddings, the bride's hands and feet are covered in intricate designs. It is said in South Asia that the deeper the color of the bride's henna, the deeper her husband's love for her. The night before the wedding is generally celebrated as the 'Mehendi/Henna night'- when the family and friends get together and sing and dance as the bride gets her henna applied. It's a night of fun and enjoyment for the family.
This tradition has now become ’trendy’ and has been adopted by the west. Henna “tattoos” are all the rage and many celebrities are seen adorning their bodies with them. They make for a great temporary tattoo when you don't want to ink your bodies permanently. It is also not just restricted to hands and feet anymore. People can be seen getting henna applied all over their bodies.
For me, Henna is forever reminiscent of the night before Eid, when we would, after the dusk prayer, rush to the market where the mehendiwalas (henna artists) would be ready for the Eid rush, or arrange for someone to come over to apply henna for us. Eid would be incomplete without henna. But henna is not just for special occasions. Dressing up our hands makes us happy on any day!
Living in the west, it is not always easy to find someone to apply henna for us. While pre-made henna cones are available in eastern markets, and many online stores too, the application itself mostly falls on us, and not all of us are artists! I am always on the lookout for easy henna designs to try on myself and my daughters. There are so many kinds of henna designs that originate from different parts of the East. Every region has its own style of henna, and the intricacy and basic motifs vary.
Luckily, a simple google search can yield a lot of easy henna designs and make it easier to beautify our hands and feet. To save you the time and energy needed to search and sift through the many pictures on the internet, here are some easy henna designs for you to try out today.
Vines, flowers, and leaves:
Most henna designs are built around vines, flowers, and leaves. Whether on their own, or part of a larger design, vines, flowers, and leaves look beautiful and are actually pretty easy to make.
Mandala designs are simple and can be built to look either simplistic or full, whatever you prefer. If you're new to henna art, this is a great easy henna design to start with.
For your feet:
Minimalistic or full, henna can dress up your feet like nothing else. Flowers, vines, leaves, mandalas, anything can be modified to look good on your feet!
Don't forget to check our Instagram page for more nail-polish inspiration!