Tattoos are for life, but for those who want a less permanent piece of body art, henna tattoos are a great option. While some may see it as nothing more than a fad, henna tattoos have been prevalent since the time of the ancient Egyptians. These temporary pieces of body art have enjoyed a rich history that is alive today in plenty of amazing henna tattoo designs.
But what exactly is henna? The namesake of this traditional form of art comes simply from the henna plant from which the ink is produced. Henna is a multi-branched shrub or tree that can grow 6 to 25 feet tall. The plant is native to northern Africa, western and southern Asia, and northern Australia.
The ink is sourced from the leaves of the plant. On their own they won’t stain human skin, but once the right molecules (lawsone molecules for all you junior scientists) are released the ink can last for weeks. Traditional preparation involves milling the leaves of the henna plant into a powder which is then mixed with any number of liquids such as water or lemon juice. But first the powder must sit for up to 48 hours in order to allow the staining molecules to fully be released from the plant material.
The mixed paste is then applied to human skin with one of many possible tools depending on which part of the world you’re in. The skin will lightly stain within minutes and the longer the paste is left in contact with the skin, the darker the stain. Sometimes, essential oils such as tea tree oil or lavender can be added to the mix to improve staining.
We’ve gather up a nice collection of really unique and interesting henna tattoo designs. They just make us want to run to the the henna tattoo/eyebrow threading kiosk at the mall and see what all the fuss is about.
Weren’t those henna tattoo designs cool? You don’t need to make a commitment to a tattoo needle to enjoy rad body art. There’s nothing wrong with just dipping your toes in that pool by staining your skin with henna ink.