First Henna Paste and Application Results

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Last seen: 7 years 5 months ago
Joined: 2011-09-05 08:14
First Henna Paste and Application Results

Thank you everyone for your input. For my first attempt my henna came out really well! I did a freehand henna design on my calf with rather fine lines yesterday morning and sealed it and left it on all day and overnight. Last night I decided to do a foot as well since I had a lot of paste left over in my cone (I had thrown it in the fridge). For the foot design I did another clip of my cone for a bit wider line. I did a pattern along the side near the sole of my foot, little swirlies on my toes which went into a viney flower on the top of my foot. I sealed and then put on a loose cotton sock for bedtime.

This morning the calf pattern had mostly flaked off overnight (was not covered and left on much longer). The foot pattern stayed intact with no flaking at all until I put on flip-flops this morning. It is now starting to flake and I can tell it came out well and is much darker than the calf design. I'm thinking...because the part of the body, better heat retention, heavier lines, plus the sock on the foot? Maybe a bit of all of these things! Both designs look good!

The only issues I had were in application. I didn't pre-sift my powder since I used a good quality and it didn't seem to have any chunks. I did; however, squish my paste through a knee-high when I filled my carrot bag. I used a carrot bag to fill mylar cones.

In application, here is what I noticed: Sometimes I could make neat straight lines. Other times the cone would push a gloppy thick spot in my line. Also, sometimes, my lines would lay down perfectly and other times it would break and leave "skips" that I would have to go back over. I tried on plain paper with same results. I don't think my paste was too thick. Would pre-sifting the powder prior to mixing have helped this? Or did I not use enough sugar? I did not use table sugar. I had ordered a sample of dextrose and used about 1/4 of the sample with the 25g of henna powder that I mixed, but I didn't have any idea about what ratio to use as it came without instructions. I also don't know anyone else that does henna outside this forum. All my education has come from The Henna Page, books, this forum and my Henna School kit. So any tips on application and mix are greatly appreciated!

All in all...I'm happy with my "first attempt" results. But I would like to refine my recipe and application issues for my next batch. Also, if anyone knows, I wonder if I could scoop out the rest of my next batch from my frozen leftover cones and add more sugar for future applications..if that would help...or am I stuck with using this paste "as is"?

Thanks again for your input!

Last seen: 5 years 2 months ago
Joined: 2010-04-26 06:47
Re: First Henna Paste and Application Results

 It could be either paste that's too stiff or doesn't have enough sugar if you're getting skips in the line. It could also just be the amount of presure you put on the cone. Drawing more slowly and/or putting more pressure on the cone may fix it right up! I'm afraid as a beginner, you'll have to play with adjusting all three in order to really figure out what's causing the problem for you. Paste thickiness and the amount of sugar in your recipe are very personal things and everyone prefers them just a bit different.

Yes, you can empty your cones, readjust the mix, and recone, however since it was your first try you may just want to stick it out, keep using the paste as it is a bit longer and see if you don't improve your line quality just from practice.

There really isn't a 'correct' amount of sugar to add to paste. This depends on weather, your taste, and a particular batch of henna. Less stringy hennas tend to need more sugar. Dry weather needs more sugar. Some people prefer the feel of the paste with more sugar. I know artists that use anywhere from a couple teaspoons to a half cup per 100 g henna powder! And all will absolutely SWEAR by thier own way.

Keep going! It sounds like you've got a great start!

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