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Think Karwa Chauth, and you immediately think of mehendi-decorated hands and dressed up women, don’t you? Women observe a day-long fast with much fervour on the festival, which falls on October 24 this year. Preps are in full swing and most ladies are heading out to get their hands and/or feet done up in mehendi. Mehndi surely looks exceptionally beautiful, but sooner or later it begins to fade, making your skin rough and dry.
Many women complain of itching, redness, and peeling off of the skin along with the henna from the hands. The ideal way that henna comes off is that the colour gradually fades over days, even weeks. However, the markets are full of people using adulterated henna, which can have certain reactions and side effects.
Dr Rinky Kapoor, consultant dermatologist, cosmetic dermatologist, and dermato-durgeon, The Esthetic Clinics, Delhi warns that some people can have allergies to Mehndi.
She says, “Avoid using chemical mehndi that contains ammonia and PPD chemicals and it will only damage the skin and hair. Henna is safe to use if you buy 100% natural henna. Check the manufacturing date on the pack, the fresher it is the better is the vibrance of colours. Chemical-ridden mehndi fades quickly, and may cause allergic reactions to skin and hair.”
Although most varieties of henna are perfectly safe and non-toxic, black henna does have some allergenic potential such as skin rashes and internal discomfort. So make sure to use natural mehndi and always perform a patch test before applying it on your hands.
“Nature has provided us with many ways to keep the skin and hair healthy and natural henna is one of them. It is such a wonderful and natural product. It smells heavenly and has no chemicals. In fact, it soothes the skin and softens the hands,” says Dr Kapoor.
Pure mehendi is also said to have a cooling effect on the body and it prevents heat and inflammation. Among the multitude of good that natural henna does, some of the benefits include:
You can also prepare henna at home to avoid any side effects. Here’s the recipe for it.
You can also add more lemon juice and honey to it to make the paste smooth.