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Brides want to put their best face forward

With the wedding season approaching in northern parts of India, the beauticians are set to make a tidy business.

india Updated: Oct 15, 2009 16:36 IST

With the wedding season approaching in northern parts of India, the beauticians are set to make a tidy business

As most of the Hindu marriages are scheduled to have the nuptials converging with an opportune astral moment, there is always a mad rush around this time of the year.

About 30,000 weddings will take place on November 27th in New Delhi alone. A relatively less number are scheduled for 23rd November, as per reports. And this creates a heavy rush on beauty parlours too.

"The 1st of every September we open bookings for the next year. Come December and we have already committed for up to the November and December next. That's how glued in everybody is these days and how much in advance one gets ready for their bridals. There are certain days, which are really heavy "Saya days" (or, auspicious dates) which completely get booked eight months in advance. There is not a single slot free for anybody else with a late booking to come in and take a chance," says Ambika Pillai, a popular Beautician in New Delhi.

A typical Hindu marriage is a long drawn out affair and families of the bride and the groom come together in a number of religio-social ceremonies.

The weddings are viewed as the biggest occasion for any girl. And nobody wants to compromise with her appearance on her wedding day. As traditional Indian bridal make-up is an intricate affair, a professional beautician's services are mandatory.

The make up is a vital factor in a bride's itinerary. With a heavily 'in demand' date and only a few favourite 'in vogue' designers, the beauticians get a deluge of offers to help these brides 'put their best face forward'.

The brides to be have everything chalked out, a far cry from the demure, withdrawn brides of yesteryears. "When it (the marriage) was fixed up in June, I had to really be after my Beautician, trace her out and give her a lot of references as 23rd and 27th are the busiest of wedding dates," says Neha, a bride-to-be.

Besides no Indian bridal make up is complete without a henna-sketch that leaves beautiful dyed imprints on the hands and feet of the bride. There is even a wedding rite, Mehndi Ki Raat, a day before the wedding day, reserved exclusively for it. Henna is a reddish-orange dyestuff prepared from the dried and ground leaves of a plant grown especially for the purpose in the Indian subcontinent.

With this confluence of stars on 27th, the henna artists are tempted to hike their rates. "It normally starts from rupees 5,000 onwards and upto 15,000. Our bookings happen six to seven months in advance. There are people who want instant bookings and at time even try to 'bribe' to take on their booking for double(near rupees 30,000), of the normal price,"says Geetanjali, a specialist in the Henna works.

"The offers are attractive, but we cannot refuse earlier bookings to leave them at the last moment," says Geetanjali.

First Published: Nov 24, 2005 12:16 IST