Photographer's Note

I took this photo at the bus station in Tangier. I hope I was not being rude, but I thought the artwork on this woman's hands and feet was beautiful, so I took a photo of her hands.

"Henna body art is made by applying henna paste to the skin: the lawsone in the paste migrates into the outermost layer of the skin and makes a red-brown stain.Once applied to the skin, lawsone molecules gradually migrate from the henna paste into the outer layer of the skin. Though henna's lawsone will stain the skin within minutes, the longer the paste is left on the skin, the more lawsone will migrate. Henna paste will yield as much dye as the skin can easily absorb in less than eight hours. Henna tends to crack and fall off the skin during these hours, so it is often sealed down by dabbing a sugar/lemon mix over the dried paste, or simply adding some form of sugar to the paste. This also adds to the colour of the end result, increasing the intensity of the shade.Morocco, Mauritania[19], Yemen, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, as well as India and many other countries have thriving women’s henna businesses." from

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