Henna body art is not just some hippie body decoration that looks cool (even though is does!) Historically, henna body art, also known as henna “tattoos”, have been around since the times of papyrus paper and scribes; used in traditional ceremonies ranging from Hindu weddings to Muslim feasts and African circumcision rituals. Henna was the first “cosmetic” used to dye everything from hair to nails; a natural dye used for fabrics like leather, silk, and wool. Henna even has medicinal properties, like most plants, still used as an anti-fungal remedy to this day.
Thanks to globalization, henna “tattooing” has almost become mainstream, with people like Madonna and Gwen Stefani modeling elaborate temporary body art, from head to foot. Depending on the quality (purity) of the henna and the potency of your body soap, a henna “tattoo” can last up to 3 months (sometimes more.) In preparation, fresh henna leaves are usually dried, crushed and then mixed with strong acidic tea or lemon juice, and have to sit for at least 6 hours, before the lawsone from the leaf matter (the stuff that makes color) is ready. (And no, application is more like painting; there are no needles or pain involved!)
And depending on the design you select, it can taken hours, days, for some Hindu brides to get a full body tattoo. This Wednesday, July 6, you have a rare opportunity not only to watch a henna artist, Sabreena Haque, work, but to receive a small henna tattoo yourself at Om Shan Tea.
So spoil yourself, your body and your soul, with some organic teas and food while you learn, watch and experience a traditional Indian Mendhi style henna tattoo.
A Night of Henna Body Art
Wednesday, July 6th, 6pm-Midnight
233 14th st (between Mission & South Van Ness
3 blocks from 16th/Mission BART)
San Francisco, California
$5 minimum for food or tea.
$10 minimum suggested donation for small henna design.
$20 suggested donation or more, for large, full arm/hand designs.