Alhuda Henna Fashions

Superior Quality Natural Henna Body Art
Proudly Serving the Philadelphia Area 


Frequently asked questions about henna and the henna process.


About Henna

  1. What is henna?

    Henna or mehndi are the common names for Lawsonia Inermis; a small, shrub-like tree that is native to the tropical, semi-arid regions of Asia, North Africa, and Northern Australia. The leaves of the Lawsonia Inermis plant produce a red dye. The leaves are ground into a fine powder and mixed into a paste that is used as a colorant for skin, hair, fingernails, leather, silk, and wool.

  2. Where does henna come from?

    Henna is native to the tropical, semi-arid regions of Asia, North Africa, and Northern Australia.

  3. What colors does henna come in?

    The henna paste generally looks dark brown or black upon application. Once the henna paste is removed, a yellowish-orange stain will remain which will oxidize and gradually darken over the next 24-48 hour period. The stain of natural henna will always be a variant of orange/red/brown. The shade of the stain does vary. Depth and darkness of color varies due to body chemistry, skin tone, area of the body, length of time left on the body, and aftercare.

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  1. What are the uses of henna?

    Henna is used for industrial, medicinal, and beautification purposes. In industry, henna is used widely in the production of leather goods. It is used for general dyeing and coloration of fabrics as well as the decoration of drum skins.


    Henna has been used for centuries for medical purposes. Henna is used to treat burns, scrapes, heat exhaustion, fever, rashes, athlete’s foot, ringworm, itching, head lice, and is also used as a sun blocking agent and an anti-fungal treatment.


    Henna is the oldest cosmetic in history. It is used in many beauty rituals and traditions throughout Far Eastern and Middle Eastern countries; however, it has become very popular in modern, western society as well. For beautification, Henna is used as a hair and skin colorant.


  2. Who uses henna?

    Henna is used by many people of different religious and cultural backgrounds all over the world. Henna is used in some religious practices; however, henna is not sacred or religious in nature. Even in religious practices, henna is used as a celebratory way to beautify one’s body. Henna may be used in any celebration and is often the reason for gatherings. Henna is a timeless adaptation to any cultural tradition.

  3. When and how is henna used?

    The indulgence of adorning one’s body is often found at celebrations, such as weddings, baby showers, bar mitzvahs, quinceañeras, birthday parties, corporate events, fundraisers, festivals, slumber parties, and more.

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  1. Is it safe?

    Yes. When used on the skin, henna rarely causes adverse reactions or side effects. If you are concerned, you should do a small patch test first. Natural Henna does not contain any harsh additives or dangerous chemicals. It is safe for use on children over 3 and during pregnancy.



  2. What is "black henna?"

    There is no such thing as “black henna.” For henna to produce a black color, a dangerous chemical hair dye called PPD is added. PPD is not approved by the FDA for use on the skin. It can cause internal injury, such as liver and kidney damage and often causes open sores and permanent scarring on the skin. You should be aware, ask questions, and always avoid black henna.

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Application and Aftercare

  1. Does it hurt?

    No. The skin is not broken when the henna is applied. The paste is applied topically, feels much like lotion, and generally has a cooling effect. Due to the addition of pure essential oils such as Eucalyptus, the henna paste can sometimes feel tickling or tingling, but it is absolutely pain-free. The henna actually feels very relaxing or soothing, especially in summer months when the skin endures more exposure to heat and sun.

  2. How long does henna stay on the skin?

    The longer the paste is left on the skin, the darker the stain will be and the longer it will remain on the skin. On thicker skin like hands and feet, the henna usually lasts 1-2 weeks. The henna stain usually lasts about 3-10 days on thinner skinned areas like chest and arms. The henna disappears as the skin exfoliates and regenerates. In order to obtain the best possible stain, the henna design should be covered and kept warm. It is a good practice to cover the design with a breathable paper medical tape then cover the area with cloth, like a glove or sock. Paste should be left on the skin a minimum of 4 to 6 hours, but I recommend leaving the paste on for 8 hours to develop a deeply rich and lasting design.

  3. What should I do when the henna is removed?

    Do not use water to remove henna. Allow the henna to flake off naturally. If you have covered the henna with cloth or paper tape, the henna should come off when the covering is removed. If there is any remaining henna, it can be removed by gently scratching with a fingernail or removed by applying olive oil to a cotton ball and gently wiping the henna away. 

    Try to avoid water as much as possible for the first 24-48 hours. I understand that this may be difficult, especially for designs that are done on the hands; however, you should try to limit your contact with water in that initial period. To keep your henna stain dark and long lasting, apply oil or lotion reguarly.

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