Henna tattoo is one way to make an image on the skin so that it looks more attractive. Although often claimed to be natural, additional coloring i
Henna tattoo is one way to make an image on the skin so that it looks more attractive. Although often claimed to be natural, additional coloring ingredients in henna tattoos can cause allergic reactions on the skin.
Henna (Lawsonia inermic) is a plant that grows in tropical and subtropical areas, such as Asia and Africa. The leaves are often dried and processed into natural hair and nail dyes or temporary tattoo inks.
In Indonesia itself, henna is better known by the name inna or girlfriend. Not only as a hair and nail dye, henna is also often used as a skin decoration in wedding processions in several regions in Indonesia.
Harmful Ingredients in Henna Tattoos and Their Effects on the Skin
The original color produced by henna leaves is a combination of orange, brown, and red. Meanwhile, temporary tattoo inks marketed under claims to be henna-based are often black.
To get a black henna tattoo color, it takes a mixture of other dyes. One of the chemicals that is often added to black henna tattoos is coal tar, also known as PPD (p-phenylenediamine).
In some people, the use of PPD on the skin causes an allergic reaction that can appear from the first day to three weeks after using a henna tattoo.
Skin allergic reactions that may occur can include inflammation, itching, red rashes, fading skin color, to increased skin sensitivity to sunlight. Not only that, this inflammation can also blister and leave scars that are quite deep on the skin.
In addition to causing allergic reactions on the skin, the use of henna tattoos in patients with G6PD deficiency can accelerate the destruction of red blood cells. This condition can develop into serious and endanger the life of the sufferer.
Tips to Avoid the Dangers of Henna Tattoos
To avoid the risk of skin allergies, there are several tips that you can apply in using a henna tattoo, including:
- Choose a henna tattoo that is orange, red, or brown. If the color is too dark, there is a possibility that the henna tattoo has been added with other coloring agents.
- Read the label on the packaging that contains information about the ingredients in the henna tattoo before using it. Additional dyes are usually written with the name phenylenediamines or toluenediamines.
- If the henna tattoo does not have an ingredient list label or you are in doubt, you should not use the henna tattoo.
- Perform an allergic reaction test first by applying a henna tattoo on a small area of the skin.
- Avoid using henna tattoo ink on sensitive skin parts of the body.
In addition to the several methods above, you are also advised to avoid using henna tattoos that promise long-lasting results, because most likely the henna tattoo has been added to other chemicals.
Henna tattoos can last up to 14 days before the color starts to fade. To help remove it, you can use several methods, such as soaking the henna tattoo in a solution of water and salt or rubbing it with antibacterial soap.
However, if the henna tattoo does not go away or you experience certain allergic reactions after using a henna tattoo, such as itching, burning, and blisters appear on the skin, immediately visit a doctor for treatment.