Henna, every female’s favorite plant, is used to extract the popular dye known as Mehndi. Although the word Mehndi is also synonymous with a celebratory wedding event, here we intend to discuss amazing facts and historical beliefs regarding the dye, Mehndi.
1. Mehendi as a medicine!
Mehendi can be instrumental in relieving a person from mental stress, curing fevers and dissipating headaches. So now you know why we apply a generous amount of Mehendi to the bride!
2. Mehendi night
In South Asian weddings, usually preceding the wedding by a day or two at most, the Mehendi functions are held to celebrate the impending marriage. As is the case with Mehendi, the night is celebrated with colors, merrymaking, singing, dancing and yes of course, Mehendi!
3. Hindu and Muslim Mehendi patterns differ
Hindu Mehendi patterns feature a peacock, raja, ranis and names yet a typical Muslim Mehendi pattern does not feature any of this. Muslim Mehendi patterns are comprised mostly of negative spaces and floral designs.
4. Mehendi has been in use since ancient times!
Yes, long before many religions today existed, Mehendi was in used! More than 5,000 years ago when a Pharoah passed away, he was painted with Mehendi or Henna in order to have a blissful afterlife and be recognized in the realm beyond.
5. Mehendi as protection against the evil eye!
In Muslim and Jewish traditions, it is believed that Henna or Mehendi protects the bride against the evil eye! A complex Mehendi design protects the bride better, so goes the superstition. So if you’re suspicious of any jealous relative or person, get to designing some intricate Mehendi patterns!
6. The initials game!
The bride, as a romantic gesture practiced in South Asia, embed her groom-to-be’s name initials in the Mehendi patterns. The husband has to find his initials among the complex pattern, on the wedding night. If that isn’t bound to break the ice between the new couple, I don’t know what will!
7. Where does it come from?
Henna is made from dry leaves of the Henna plant (Mehendi Plant). It is also used in perfumes to give off a pleasant odour. So Mehendi can come in handy for men as well!
8. The advent of Mehendi in sub-continent!
You have the Mughal rulers to thank for, in bringing Mehendi to the subcontinent. According to historians, Mughal rulers brought Mehendi and introduced it to the local population in around 1200 A.D.
9. Mehendi, the disease healer!
Diseases such as colon cancer, small pox, leprosy and blood loss during the childbirth can be handled by using henna.
10. Mehendi for your dental health!
Till this day in rural North Africa, Henna twigs are still used by the local population as toothpicks to maintain healthy gums and clean teeth. Who would’ve thought Mehendi would serve as an alternative to expensive dental fee!