White henna is a modern take on an old tradition. Henna artist Sarah Hussain explains why this trend is worth trying.
Weddings are the perfect time to remember the traditions of our ancestors and an opportunity to merge current trends with past customs. Lately the pattern work done on my mother’s hands during her wedding has been on my mind. While looking through her wedding photographs, I could not find a perfect image of the mehndi on her hands, dyed with a deep paste in scarlet and ruby. I remember my heart yearning for that colour, but times are changing.
Today, as I plan my own wedding, the time has come for me to paint them red. As a bridal henna artist myself, I always wanted an intricate and lavish design adorning my arms till my elbows and my feet till my calves. The sensation of rosewater along the soles of my feet, pressed together as I danced in my Henna…this was my dream.
Henna is a beautiful rendition of a story passed down through our cultures from Iran to India and Pakistan to Morocco, covering the hands of brides of many faiths. But the tradition is shifting from red henna to white.
Fashion is always chasing fine art and a generous adaptation to the world of henna has accepted a new calling. Those who do not enjoy the scent or lush colour of natural henna can use what is now called “white henna”. White Henna (more examples here) is a cosmetic application, which stays above the skin for up to four days after it dries. Swarovski crystals can be added for extra sparkle or to match a bride’s gown. A white gown with lace overlay can be enhanced with white henna to create the illusion of lace gloves or sleeves. Garters can also be painted on for your intimate moments.
Every part of your wedding is a memoir for eternity. So cherish these intimate details. The art of Henna has changed immensely since the Bedouins first festooned their wives with the henna paste using only their fingers. Adorn yourselves in henna and usher in a new generation of cultural fusion.
“Allow the light in that moment to kiss your skin.
Allow the abundance of colour to soak into the mix of your pigment.
Allow movement to penetrate deep within your soul.
As you celebrate the shapes of the shadows that dance around you
Remember they are all of your own.
Allow the scent to take you back.
Allow tradition to merge with faith.”
— Sarah Hussain
About Breath of Henna:
Brides are provided a complimentary consultation where they can have their diaries rendered to those of their dreams. Brides are encouraged to meet in person or set up an online consultation. You may select your design or even create a custom diary exactly as your natural henna would be rendered. Have a look at our portfolio. Most of all enjoy this process, as it’s important for you to feel your best.