Music, Colors, and Festive Traditions: Why Mehndi Ceremony is an Integral Part of Indian Culture

Those amazing henna designs, bright ethnic dresses, and wedding music –the festive aura in full swing! Who doesn’t love it? If you happen to adore the mehndi but aren’t too sure about the basic concept behind it, there’s some great news for you.

In Indian culture, big fat weddings are an absolute norm. No matter which district or religion you may belong to, there’s one thing for sure. You’ve probably attended or been a part of a mehndi ceremony.

Termed as the most absolute essence for an Indian bride’s look, the concept behind a true mehndi celebration is more than meets the eye.

And that’s exactly why it deserves a special mention. Below, we’re breaking down the quintessential mehndi function while glancing over its significance in Indian culture. So let’s get right into it.

Mehndi Celebrations: Let the Wedding Festivities Began!

Unraveling the ancient history behind the Mehndi term

Did you know that the art of mehndi dates back to centuries ago?

Yes, it’s considered to be the most ancient form of body art today. Some predict its arrival to be as early as the Vedic age or before, while traces of its incorporation in mummification has also been noted.

Mehndi is commonly referred to as Henna Ceremony in some Muslim cultures while others such as the Bengals term it as Gaye Holud.

The term Mehndi arises from the Sanskrit word ‘mendhika’ that pertains to the henna plant. It is also believed that the Princess Cleopatra painted her body with mehndi, owing to its natural benefits.

Today, the mehndi celebration is widely implemented as a tradition of festivity, commonly applied on the bride, her friends and family members. At the same time, it is a grand ceremony that is prevalent amongst Indian Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, and Christians too.

Today, the mehndi celebration is widely implemented as a tradition of festivity, commonly applied on the bride, her friends and family members. At the same time, it is a grand ceremony that is prevalent amongst Indian Muslims, Hindus, Sikhs, and Christians too.

Traditional Mehndi rituals in Indian culture

Today, it is common to have mehndi applied on the bride’s and groom’s hands before the engagement or wedding day. The ceremony symbolizes intricate application of simple mehndi designs over the bride’s hands as well as on feet.

The art of mehndi symbolizes an aura of positivity and good omen for the bride and groom in Indian culture, as they enter a new journey in their life. This beautiful ceremony or pre-wedding ritual can be seen in the entire Indian subcontinent including a number of neighboring nations too.

Understanding the importance of Mehndi in India

In India, mehndi stands for the bond of holy matrimony. Therefore, Indians term it as shagun or plain good luck. Mehndi also represents love, care and affection that the couple and their families hold for one another. Some cultural facts about mehndi include:

  • the darker the color, the deeper the love
  • the color also depicts the degree of understanding between a bride and her mother in law
  • it is termed auspicious for mehndi to retain upon the hands of the bride for as long as possible
  • some may view it as a symbol of fertility
  • the medicinal properties of mehndi can’t be denied including benefits to hair, nail and general health

The Mehndi ceremony- an amalgamation of color, life and music


Cassette Mehendi Invites
Cassette Mehendi Invites

Couples go the extra mile to have their mehndi invitations printed. This is usually done using breathtaking mehndi invitation card templates.

Mehndi functions, held one day prior to the wedding, can be seen as an amalgamation of color and liveliness and musical celebrations. Often, the sangeet ceremony is combined with the mehndi for an added dose of festivity.

Both the groom and bride’s families actively exchange cheer and glad tidings, amongst an aura of fireworks, dance and delicious Indian culinary delights.

It is not uncommon for the bride to sport her groom’s initials in her mehndi design. On the other hand, ice breaking games comprising of the groom searching for his initials in his bride’s hands is also observed for some post wedding fun.

The great significance that mehndi holds in Indian culture can never be denied. Today, it continues to be honored and cherished for obvious reasons by Indians across the globe.