My Henna Tattoo

Walking with Cake: Henna tattoo

(My freshly applied henna tattoo.)

Since she moved to Austin, my friend Lindsay and I have discovered just how much we have in common.  Our wedding anniversaries are the exact same day, and it turns out our birthdays are two days apart.  I wanted to celebrate turning 35, since it seems like a milestone, so we decided to get henna tattoos!  We’ve both had them in the past and knew what to expect, so after a lot of schedule juggling, we made an appointment and went last week.  It was fun to celebrate our birthdays with a little “girl time,” and we had so much fun getting to know the artist, too.

Nisha Agrawal is the talented owner of Henna Arts, located in Round Rock, Texas, and she is truly an artist in every way.  Besides henna, a technique she began learning as a young girl, Nisha also paints and designs jewelry.  All of her pieces are beautiful and ornate, inspired by her native India.  As she worked, Nisha kept us entertained with her own tales of motherhood and assured me that raising two boys does not get easier with time.  Thanks, Nisha!

Walking with Cake: Nisha working

(Nisha making me laugh as she works.)

Henna has become more common in the U.S., and is a natural, plant-based paste applied to the skin and allowed to dry.  The process is relaxing and painless, and it’s a great way to get the look of a tattoo without the pain or commitment, since it gradually fades over time.  I wore my dry paste overnight, covered with a tissue and medical tape, and then gently rubbed it off the next morning, using a touch of cooking oil.  The paste leaves behind a beautiful stain on your skin that lasts for several weeks.  In India, henna is generally applied to the hands and feet of brides, as well as to women before parties or holidays.

Walking with Cake: Lindsay's pattern

(Nisha beginning to work on Lindsay’s pattern.)

In college, I had several henna tattoos applied, always choosing a conservative bracelet style on my arm.  This time, I chose a larger design, and Lindsay had her entire arm covered.  Nisha is incredibly talented and works quickly, making beautiful designs as she goes.  I’m thoroughly impressed with the details involved in her work, and this is, by far, the best henna tattoo I’ve ever had.

Walking with Cake: Lindsay's hand

(Lindsay’s finished design.)

Lindsay and I are planning to visit Nisha again in the next few months, and I’m already imagining my next design.  I love the look so much, and I’m thinking of doing it regularly, just for fun.

Walking with Cake: Henna stain

(My henna tattoo now.)

My design is slowly beginning to fade, since it’s near my hands, which get washed a lot during the day.  But it should last a few more weeks, and I’m so thrilled with the result.  It was such a fun way to celebrate my birthday, and I can’t wait to do it again!

If you’re in the Austin area, I can definitely recommend Nisha of Henna Arts!

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