Wednesday, April 08, 2015

White Henna Tattoo - Is not Henna Tattoo - It is Gilding.

I had a phone call today from someone asking me if I did "white" henna tattoo. I appreciate that many people do not understand what henna tattoo is, and so they can be misled.

Henna tattoo is made from the crushed leaves of the henna plant - you can refer to the Wikipedia notes on henna for a deeper understanding. True henna tattoo will always be a shade of reddish brown, red, brown, perhaps a pale orange if the powder is very old.
By definition, you cannot have "white henna." However you can have "gilding." Gilding is a process that uses a henna cone, usually a hair gel of some kind, and a glitter powder. The gilding can be any number of colors - white, blue, green, basically any color of body glitter can be used to make the paste. Again, here is a link to buy the ingredients you need to make a white tattoo.

The gel paste may be applied using a cone - which is a similar method to henna tattoo - however it is not henna tattoo, it is white gilding and will last as long as you do not wash the gilding off. Perhaps people are using a fixative to keep that gilding on a bit longer, or mixing some new ingredient into the paste to make it last longer.

It is traditional to gild a finished henna tattoo so that the bride can have her authentic henna tattoo embellished to match her outfits. There are photos of gilded henna  in a variety of colors, including white on my website. Just click the link above to see examples.

As a gilded design is a short lived design in general, and as there has not been much demand for gilding, I no longer offer it on a regular basis. If you would like white guiding, in a traditional henna pattern, I am happy to oblige.