Hands up who wants gorgeous mehndi colour for their Big Day? Follow our advice for the deepest, richest stain you’ve ever seen.
As the body’s largest organ, we shed skin and regenerate new cells every single day, so if you want to ensure your mehndi sticks around, your first step is to get rid of the dead cells.
There are some superb scrubs available, such as Rituals Express Your Soul Scrub (£19.50, www.Rituals.com) with petitgrain and verbena. Just apply in the shower before your mehndi night to reveal silky smooth skin.
Origins Incredible Spreadable Ginger (£25, www.Origins.co.uk) works wonders and smells delightful too.
Be kind to your skin
Splurge on a luxe moisturiser to ensure you’re wearing your best possible skin. Healthy skin will hold henna colour more effectively than parched cells. We’re wild for the addictive rose scent in By Terry’s Baume de Rose Hand Cream (£32, www.CultBeauty.co.uk), and the dual action of Clarins Hand and Nail Treatment Cream (£21, www.Clarins.co.uk).
Both formulas are nourishing yet non-greasy, but Clarins helps to strengthen your nails to boot! Smooth on in the days leading to the party, but ensure skin is completely free of lotion immediately before mehndi application.
Patience is a virtue
Watching mehndi being applied is mesmerising, but once your artist has finished her masterpiece, leave it alone. One of the most foolproof ways to achieve dark colour is by leaving the paste on for as long as possible and allowing it to flake off naturally. Trust us, you’ll be rewarded with dark hues within hours.
Turn up the heat!
Raised body heat plays a massive role in colour development, so look for ways to turn up the temperature on your hands and feet. One tip is applying heat-generating clove oil over the mehndi or dabbing on a sugar-lemon juice mixture with cotton wool.
No to H2O
Above all, avoid all contact with water, as it will prevent the colour from activating properly. Either eat before your artist begins her work or have your ‘maids feed you to avoid having to wash your hands afterwards. Once mehndi has dried, steer clear of H2O – we’d even go as far as to say try not to shower for 12 hours afterwards.
As seen in Khush Wedding Autumn 2017 KW16. Buy this issue here
Main image from Duke Photography