Mehndi Designs

Mehndi designs in India vary depending on the social locale of people. The most acclaimed Mehndi styles include Arabic, Indian native, Pakistani and Africa. One can easily distinguish the styles as each style has unique details. The application tools majorly used for these designs are henna cones.

A typical Indian design is identified with a dot that is centered on the palm surrounded by 4 or 6 equally shaped small dots in a spherical path. All the fingertips are also capped with henna. This is a basic design and even novices can practice it easily and the whole process of application gets over in few minutes.
The designs of Indian native vary from simple to intricate. The brides usually wear the intricate designs during their weddings. These complex designs carry more details and almost cover 3/4th of the hand and take long time to complete. The designs for the feet vary according to the contours.
When using Indian native designs, it is better to leave the Mehndi to dry overnight. As the traditional dot design attracts more henna, it needs more time to dry. If you can add some natural color boosters like lemon juice and eucalyptus oil, the color comes out well. It is also suggested that you apply a little bit of coconut oil as soon as you remove the dried henna instead of washing it away with water. This makes your Mehndi shine and stay for longer time.

Mehndi Designs – Arabic

They are the simplest forms of Mehndi designs. They do not carry much detail and usually designed with leaves, flowers and vines all over the palms and feet. The Arabic designs are identified with unique curves that form different shapes. In these designs, specifically the shapes are not filled with henna and the skin is exposed in between Mehndi lines. So, these designs look very attractive on people with fair complexion. Since the shapes are not filled with henna, the concentration of henna on hands is less and the Mehndi design dries up quickly. Even the designing work does not take much time as it involves simple curves.
Arabic Mehndi designs are ideal for wearing on small festive occasions and at times even for simple family occasions. To make the Arabic Mehndi look even more attractive you can add some glitters over the design. The glitters should be added after the henna dries up otherwise they may mix up with henna and would give a shabbily look. But glitters only offer instant beauty and do not stay for long hours. If you wash your hands, they might get washed away with water, as they are not water resistant. So adding glitters is ideal for parties and small occasions.

Mehndi Designs – African

African Mehndi styles almost resemble Arabic styles but they use geometric figures such as dots, squares, semi circles etc. Like in the Arabic designs, even the shapes in the African designs are left unfilled. They generally look like a fine net or mesh covering your skin and the Mehndi lines are closely packed without leaving much space in between.

The application time for this style is quiet long as the designs usually cover 3/4th of the arms and legs. Obviously it takes more quantity of henna for heavy designs. However, people of India less prefer the African styles.

Mehndi Designs – Pakistani

Muslim women in India usually wear Pakistani Mehndi designs for occasions like Eid. Pakistani style uses details of both Arabic and Indian native styles. These designs are also suggested for bridal functions like Mehndi and women oriented functions like baby shower, karva chauth, bhaidooj etc.


Though the Mehndi designs differ according to the cultural background of people in India, it is considered as a sign of prosperity and happiness. The usage of both the age-old herbs like turmeric and henna has been mentioned in Vedic books. Earlier people use to grind henna leaves with color boosting natural ingredients to prepare the paste. Today Henna cones are available, which are easy to use and especially they don’t smudge on the applier’s hands.