Mixing and Applying Mendhi


2 tablespoons ground henna
2 tablespoons strong black tea
eucalyptus or other fragrant oil

2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon sugar

art bottle or paper cornet


Combine the powder with a teaspoonful of the dark tea and add a few drops of oil to create a thick, smooth paste. The mixture should drop slowly off a spoon held upside down. (Add the liquid sparingly; the mixture can quickly turn runny.)

Spoon the paste into an art bottle or paper cone with a hole about the size of a pencil point cut out of the tip.

Squeeze the henna paste onto clean, dry skin, free of any oils or lotions. (Sketch your design first on paper or on your skin with an eyebrow pencil.) If you make a mistake, just wipe off the paste with a fingertip or cotton swab.

Allow the paste design to dry. To speed drying and darken the final color, carefully apply heat from a blow dryer, candle flame, or light bulb held near the skin.

Gently swab the dry paste with a mixture of lemon juice and sugar, using cotton balls or tissue. (Be careful not to dislodge the paste.)

Leave the paste on for at least two hours or overnight. The longer it is on, the darker the finished design. If you wear it overnight, wrap the design in plastic or cotton to protect it and your sheets.

Rinse or flake off the paste to reveal the pattern you have created.

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