Khadija Stone is a medical student currently studying at Swansea University. Khadija is also a self-taught henna artist who uses her henna skills to partake in charity work. Read below to find out more about henna!
Henna (also known as mehndi or heena) is a plant grown in the Indian Subcontinent, Arabian Peninsula and parts of North Africa. The leaves are dried, crushed and turned into a paste. The paste is then used to make beautiful designs for parties, brides and religious festivals. It was also traditionally used to stain fabrics, dye hair and colour nails.
Over the last 3 months I’ve learnt how to make my own paste with essential oils, such as lavender, and make my own designs. The paste is vegan, using only henna, lavender oil, olive oil and water. It’s then left to set for 48 hours so the stain is “activated”, strained and coned up.
I’m then able to design hands, feet or really any part of the body with beautiful patterns. The paste dries and eventually flakes off; the longer this dried paste stays on, the longer the stain remains. The stain remains for 1-2 weeks, depending on how well it is cared for.
There have previously been press horror stories over how henna tattoos can damage the skin and cause nasty reactions. This is when manufactured henna is made with chemicals to give it a long shelf-life. There are other types of henna known as “black henna” and “white henna”. These are not from the henna plant and do not contain henna; they are chemical mixtures that can prove harmful to the skin.
So far, I have been practising henna to raise money for Maggie’s and The Old Mill Foundation. I’ll also be doing it for chemotherapy patients.
Having the chance to sit down, stay still and indulge in having your henna done promotes self-love and relaxation. I am interested in how this can become its own relaxation therapy. Henna is perfect for parties, holidays, special occasions, weddings and pampering yourself.
To learn more about henna, or to see more of Khadija’s designs and enquire about prices, you can contact her on the following social media pages:
By Khadija Stone.