(redirected from mehndis)


1. The application of henna paste in intricate designs to decorate the body, often for wedding celebrations and other festive occasions in South Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa.
2. Decoration on the body made by mehndi.

[Hindi meṃhdī and Urdu menhdī, henna; akin to late Sanskrit mendhī, mendhīkā, of unknown origin.]


1. (Art Terms) (esp in India) the practice of painting designs on the hands, feet, etc using henna
2. (Hairdressing & Grooming) (esp in India) the practice of painting designs on the hands, feet, etc using henna
[C20: from Hindi]


(ˈmɛn di)
1. the art or practice of painting elaborate patterns on the skin with henna.
2. a design or designs so made.
[1995–2000; < Hindi < Skt mendī the henna plant]
References in periodicals archive ?
The very latest of these to be explored by the beaumond e is the Eastern art of body painting, or mehndi as it is traditionally known.
Along with bindis (the jewelled dot Asian women wear on their foreheads), mehndi is this summer's most happening fashion statement.
She has been practising mehndi for years, painting Asian brides for their big day, which is part of their custom and eventually she was approached to put together her own book and mehndi kit for all of the western convert s.
It has the mystical angle; Hindu goddesses are often represented with mehndi tattoos on their hands and feet, and Muslims have usedmehn di since the early days of Islam and it is even said that the prophet Mohammed used it to colour his hair and beard.
It was only when mehndi reached India that it gained real cultural importance,' explains Zaynab.
Now you can try your hand, foot or belly button at this sacred form of body tattooing with Zaynab's mehndi kit which comes with a detailed booklet of recipes and designs, a set of peel off transfers for you to work on as well as the henna and eucalyptus crystals and cone for you to create your own designs.
You can refrigerate or freeze the mehndi solution when you've made it up and once you've applied it it will take 30 minutes or so to dry," she says.
The mehndi ceremony is considered so sacred in some religions that unless the mother-in-law has applied the first dot to the bride's hand the painting cannot go ahead," says Zaynab.
In Asian cultures Zaynab says that women gather and have mehndi parties, like hen parties, and paint each other's hands and feet and sing traditional mehndi songs which tell of good luck and the blessings the mehndi will bring and its significance with d ifferent in-laws.
Many brides believe that the deeper the colour of the mehndi, the deeper the love they will receive from their in-laws, in particular the mother-in-law, whose blessing is particularly important to an Asian bride," explains Zaynab.
Done correctly, mehndi, with it's soft reddish brown tones, can look more alluring and mysterious than any permanent tattoo and the mystery of the art is not without eroticism as Zaynab explains.
Traditionally the groom's name is incorporated into the bride's mehndi tattoos, and it is his task to find it - which may take up to two hours