Besides lending color to the hands, mehndi is a very powerful medicinal herb. Weddings are stressful, and often, the stress causes headaches and fevers. As the wedding day approaches, the excitement mixed with nervous anticipation can take its toll on the bride and groom. Application of mehndi can prevent too much stress because it cools the body and keeps the nerves from becoming tense. This is the reason why mehndi is applied on the hands and feet, which house nerve endings in the body. Also, being a highly antiseptic agent, mehndi can protect the couple from viral diseases. Such diseases are totally undesirable just before the wedding and this medicinal herb can lend a strong shield. Any small cuts, burns or scratches that the couple might sustain during the course of so many rituals and customs can be healed easily with the application of mehndi. It improves blood circulation in the body and enhances general health. The initial practice of applying mehndi in ancient times began in order to protect the couple and keep them healthy.
Mehndi that is applied during Indian weddings is not just a plain paste of mehndi powder and water. Eucalyptus oil, a bit of clove oil and a few drops of lemon are added. These oils not only help in darkening the color of mehndi on the body but also enhance the benefits of mehndi and make the paste highly medicinal. The best part is that the smell, the beautiful rich color and the health benefits that mehndi lends act as a powerful aphrodisiac. Also, since the color and smell remain for days, it boosts the romance in the initial days of wedding.
Islamic belief is also very strong regarding mehndi and its application during weddings is a very significant part of Islamic weddings as well. According to holy Islamic scriptures, the Prophet always administered mehndi application and as a drink to people suffering from diseases. So, it corresponds to the Hindu ideology of using mehndi before weddings. Mehndikirasmis held a couple of days before the nikah ceremony and is celebrated with a lot of pomp and honor.