Bindi Indian Forehead Decoration
A fascinating form of body decoration. Indian people attach great importance to this ornamental mark on the forehead between the two eyebrows, a spot considered a major nerve point in human body since ancient times.
What is most astonishing about bindis besides the limited amount of literature that exists on it, is the attitude of people towards it. The bindi, normally a vermilion mark, is adored by the young and old. This mark has a religious significance and is a visible sign of a person as belonging to the Hindu religion. The bindi is of many colours although normally it is vermilion. It also does not have any standard shape and form and is applied differently by members of different sects and sub-sects.
Nowadays, with changing fashion, women try out all sorts of shapes and designs. It is, at times a straight vertical line or an oval, a triangle or miniature artistry ('alpana') made with a fine-tipped stick, dusted with gold and silver powder, studded with beads and crusted with glittering stones. The advent of the "sticker-bindi", made of felt with glue on one side, has not only added colors, shapes and sizes to the bindi but is an ingenious easy-to-use alternative to the powder. Today, bindi is more of a fashion statement than anything else, and the number of young performers sporting bindis is overwhelming even in the West.