Being a mother to two lovely young daughters, I truly value their natural curiosity in exploring new things, like the exquisite art of henna. Even at their tender age, they exhibit a strong eagerness to learn and a genuine fascination with the world around them. Nowadays, their curiosity has expanded beyond books and toys as they observe the cultural customs and traditions that surround them. Their young minds act like sponges, absorbing knowledge and yearning for experiences that broaden their horizons. I still remember when my daughters first saw henna designs adorning people's hands and feet at weddings. Their eyes sparkled with wonder and enchantment as they were captivated by the intricate patterns and vibrant colours. It was during that moment that I realised allowing them to experience henna would not only nurture their curiosity but also provide them with a means to express their artistic abilities. While some may question why I permit my girls to adorn themselves with henna, I genuinely believe it has numerous advantages. In this Mummy Shares column, I will delve into eight compelling reasons why I allow my daughters to apply henna. Cultural Appreciation and Connection Image credit: Canva Henna holds profound cultural significance in many parts of the world, including here in Malaysia. Growing up, I've noticed that wearing it not just reserved for weddings or special occasions; many people, including my grandmother, wear it daily. I remember my grandmother always has brightly red fingertips, even until today, and she\u2019s 85 years old! So, encouraging my daughters to explore henna traditions allow them to broaden their horizons. At the same time, they gain a deeper understanding of the tradition, and develop an appreciation for diverse cultures. That's why I gladly let my daughters wear henna. They can learn about and value the wonderful traditions that have been passed down through generations. This strengthens their sense of belonging and fills them with pride for our own roots. Expressing Individuality Image credit: Canva Henna is more than just a cultural tradition; it's a powerful way to express oneself. I let my daughters explore this art form to encourage their creativity and uniqueness to flourish. They can freely select designs, colours, and patterns that truly represent their personalities and preferences. Henna acts as a canvas for their imagination, helping them develop their own style and express themselves artistically. As my daughters experiment with different henna designs, they discover new ways to communicate their feelings, thoughts, and beliefs without saying a word. Each design they create or choose becomes a reflection of their inner selves, allowing them to confidently showcase their individuality to the world. Promoting Body Positivity Image credit: Canva In a world that often spreads unrealistic beauty standards, henna serves as a gentle reminder to embrace our natural beauty. Through henna, my daughters learn to appreciate the uniqueness of their bodies and celebrate their individuality. The intricate and delicate patterns that grace their skin highlight the beauty in imperfections and showcase the diversity of human bodies. Henna empowers my daughters to have a positive body image by shifting the focus from society's expectations to self-acceptance. They gain confidence and develop a deep appreciation for their skin. Encouraging Patience and Discipline Image credit: Canva The art of applying henna demands patience and discipline. My daughters learn the value of waiting for the desired outcome as they prepare the paste or choose the right ready-made ones, and patiently let it dry to achieve its vibrant colour. Creating the intricate designs requires careful attention to detail and a steady hand. This teaches them the importance of focus and precision. They recognise the importance of dedicating time and effort to their endeavours and discover the gratification that comes from nurturing their talents and skills patiently. Henna Bonding Session Image credit: Canva Applying henna is one way for shared experiences and bonding session. As a family, we often gather to apply henna together, sharing stories, laughter, and creating cherished memories. These precious moments strengthen our connection and cultivate a sense of unity and love among us. During our henna sessions, my daughters and I engage in heartfelt conversations. We listen to each other's stories, and I offer them support and encouragement. The act of applying henna becomes a shared ritual. A time when I escape the busyness of everyday life just to reconnect with them. This is one of many shared experiences that help my relationship with my girls grow stronger. Encouraging Cultural Diversity Image credit: Canva Henna is not limited to a specific culture; it is an art form that brings people together from diverse backgrounds. As my daughters explore the world of henna, they become global citizens, valuing the beauty and richness that comes from diverse cultures. They develop a genuine curiosity, breaking down barriers and promoting inclusivity. Henna becomes a gateway for them to celebrate and learn from different cultures, fostering a deep appreciation for the interconnectedness of our global community. Temporary and Versatile Nature's Art Image credit: Canva One of the advantages of henna is its temporary nature. Unlike permanent tattoos, henna designs fade away after a few weeks. This temporary quality allows my daughters to experiment with different patterns and designs without long-term commitment. They can continuously explore their creativity and discover what resonates with them the most. The versatility of henna provides my daughters with the freedom to reinvent themselves creatively. They can choose an intricate design for one occasion and opt for a bold and vibrant pattern for another. Celebrating Festivities and Milestones Image credit: Canva Henna plays an integral role in many celebrations and milestones. From weddings to religious festivals, it is often used to symbolise joy, love, and blessings. When I allow my daughters to wear the red on these special occasions, I involve them in the vibrant cultural celebrations. I also teach them about the significance of these events and the importance of preserving traditions. By participating in henna rituals during festivals and special gatherings, my daughters can connect with our community and feel the unity that comes from celebrating together. They learn about our cultural heritage and the rituals associated with these festivities, strengthening their connection to their roots. Through henna, they actively take part in these joyful moments, creating memories that will be cherished for a lifetime. Allow Kids to Embrace the Beauty of Henna Image credit: Canva Apart from the reasons mentioned earlier, henna has several benefits. It is a natural dye obtained from the henna plant, which means it is safe and gentle for my daughters\u2019 sensitive skin. It also has a cooling effect, providing a soothing sensation when applied. Additionally, it is believed to have properties that fight against fungus and bacteria, contributing to the overall health and wellbeing of their skin. Allowing my daughters to wear henna is not just about the beautiful designs on their skin. It is a deliberate decision to encourage cultural appreciation, creativity, and self-expression. It empowers them to embrace their heritage, celebrate their individuality, and develop important qualities like patience and discipline. Moreover, it encourages them to be open-minded, accepting of diversity, and appreciative of different cultures. As a mother, it brings me great joy to see the smiles on their faces as they proudly display their henna art. \u2764\ufe0f Happy International Daughter's Day to all daughters! For more insightful stories and fun recipes, stay tuned to Motherhood Story!