If you’ve never had henna done before, or you’re unsure what to do for best results, here’s a list of 7 things to keep in mind when planning your henna appointment:
- Your design is customizable. Do you have a favourite flower, shape, or design style? Is there a name or element that is meaningful to you that I can work into the piece? I love it when clients share their inspirations so that I can create something you’ll love before our appointment.
- Book your appointment for 2 days before any photo shoots or events. Your stain will not be it’s deepest until around 48 hours after it was applied. When the henna paste is first removed, it may appear not to have left much of a mark, bearing a light to bright orange stain. Over the next day or two, though you should notice the hue change from that orange to a nice noticeable brown or even burgundy colour as it oxidizes. That’ll be when you want to show it off!
- Wear comfortable clothing that can be kept out of the paste area. Keep in mind that the skin you have the paste applied to will need to be exposed likely until the paste comes off in 6-12 hours, but for sure until the paste is solidly dry in 30-40 mins. For shoulders, that may mean wearing a sleeveless shirt or tube top. For feet, remember to wear flip flops or sandals that allow the area to be uncovered.
- Avoid any kinds of lotions the day of your appointment. Sun screen, moisturizers, and creams can leave a layer of oils that can interfere with the ability of the henna paste to reach your skin in order to stain at all. Freshly cleaned skin is the best for applying henna.
- Do not schedule highly active, sweaty, sunny or any water-based activities for the next 24 hours. When paste gets bumped, sweat, or washed off of your skin before it has had a chance to get into your skin you prevent it from being able to leave a mark. This means that even showering should be done before your appointment and avoided for 24 hours after. Even if the paste has mostly come off, the residue will continue to deepen the stain throughout the full 24 hours if it isn’t washed off. To protect your stain if you must shower before the 24 hours, put a thin layer of olive or vegetable oil on top to prevent the water from washing the residue off of your skin.
- Remember not to put barriers like plastic or petroleum jelly on your developing stain or it won’t be able to deepen while it oxidizes because in order to allow your stain to oxidize, you’ll need… you guessed it: oxygen.
- Avoid chlorine and skin drying chemicals or exfoliation for as long as you have the stain. Ultimately, it’s the sloughing off of stained skin that will mark the eventual end of your stain. As the henna stained skin cells flake off and new, unstained skin is exposed you will notice your stain begin to fade. Extra exfoliation will speed this process, reducing the length of time your stain can last on your skin.