The day of Karwa Chauth is one of the major occasions when an Indian married lady aims to look absolutely beautiful in front of her husband. When a girl is young, she may try to look like her mom or sister and also sometimes dresses like a bride for fun. Wearing her mother’s saree and jewellery is sometimes a little girl’s favourite game. Once grown up and married to her Prince Charming, a traditional Indian woman does the Solah Shringar or Singar – especially on Karwa Chauth. (Read: Karwa Chauth 2015: Know the Puja Muhurat, Puja Vidhi & auspicious timings of Chandrodaya)
What is Solah Shringar?
Solah Shringar is linked with Goddess Lakshmi and symbolises femininity and fertility. Lakshmi signifies beauty and prosperity in the Hindu culture. Solah Shringar consists of 16 adornments – starting from head to toe – that help a woman in Indian attire look even more stunning. For Karwa Chauth, married women go through a complete makeover and dress like a bride yet again!
On this auspicious day, we share a list of 16 Solah Shringar items. Here’s a secret that you can try and make your man fall for you all over again!
Bindi is the very first shringar item, symbolising a strong religious implication on a married Hindu woman. Applying bindi also keeps the area in the middle of the forehead active. Nowadays women try decorating their plain bindis to get the most attractive look.
Sindoor is the most complete shringar of a married woman. In Hindu culture, it symbolises suhaag – that you are maintaining your marriage and also that your husband is alive. Red-coloured sindoor or vermilion is applied on the central parting of the hair.
3. Nose Ring
The nose ring or nath gives a lady an elegant, beautiful and ethnic look on her face. A nath is made up of silver or gold and embedded with diamonds and is usually worn or clipped on the left nostril. During marriage, a woman wears a nose ring with an attached chain that extends just behind the left ear.
Mehendi, also known as Henna, has its own charm and significance. Applying the mehendi tattoo signifies the essence and depth of love a husband has for his wife. Married women apply mehendi on their hands and feet with decorative designs and also sometimes write their husband’s name or initials on their hand. In India, mehendi is applied on many festive occasions. Mehendi is usually green, which forms into orange or deep orange once the gel ink is removed. Another form of mehendi is the Alta, which is red or pink in colour and in liquid form.
There might not be a single traditional female in India who doesn’t like bangles. Worn on both wrists, colourful bangles increase the beauty of a suhagan (married woman). On Karwa Chauth, a woman wears red-coloured bangles.
6. Hair Decoration
Also known as Keshapasharachana, Gajara and Jooda Mani, hair decoration or hairstyling plays an important role in a lady’s makeover. There’s a unique decoration done with hair accessories and flowers that goes absolutely well with the bridal or rather Karwa Chauth look.
7. Perfumes or Itar
Itar is a special fragrance that emits a unique aroma, and makes a woman more attractive for her man. A perfume helps a woman stay fresh for a longer period and brings her husband back into the romantic mood, as it triggers all the senses of the body.
A pair of Payals or Bichuas are an accessory that a girl likes and wears as anklets since childhood in India. Payals come in pairs and in all sizes. They consist of tiny bells, and make an enticing sound, announcing the arrival of a woman. Once a female gets married, she has to compulsorily wear the Payal and toe-rings for fertility. Karwa Chauth is a time to wear new Payals!
A Kamarband or Cummerbund is a band tied on the waist line of the bride or married woman. This band is beautifully designed to bring out the best in her look on her most desired day.
10. Hand ornaments
Brides wear beautiful rings on Karwa Chauth on their fingers, along with the Haath Phool, which is a set of rings attached with a chains that goes up to the wrist like a bracelet. Aarsi is the thumb ring and has a mirror embedded on it so that the bride can have a glimpse of herself.
Baajuband or armlet is worn on the upper arm of the bride. It is said that a baajuband helps to ward off the evil eye.
12. Karn Phool
These are earrings that adorn the ear of the bride, but these are more difficult to wear than normal earrings, as they are heavy. And hence, they are mostly worn with the help of a chain and clip attached to the hair for support.
13. Maang Tikka
Maang tikka is a very elegant hair accessory that is worn in the hair parting where the Sindoor is. The concept of maang tikka is said to have come from the Mughals and from Rajasthan in India. It looks very ethnic.
This is one of the most precious jewellery items and a blessing a married women could get. It enhances the beauty of the neck. A Mangalsutra consists of black and golden beads. It is something gifted by a groom at the time of marriage to his bride. It is said that practice of wearing Mangalsutra enhances the well-being of a husband and it protects the marriage from evil eye.
15. Anjana or Kajal
Kajal is basically applied on the edges of the upper and lower eyelids, which enhances the bride’s eyes. It not only makes her look traditional but also attractive and appealing.
16. Red Saree or Bridal Trousseau
Last, but not the least, a perfect and beautiful bridal saree or trousseau or something similar on Karwa Chauth that would truly bring out the eternal beauty of a woman! Especially bright colours like red are used in a bridal dress, but other saree colours could be maroon, green or golden, or anyone that you like!
Edited by Shweta Parande | Image credit: Pinterest