About Bess
I have always been artistically curious and interested in the ancient art of henna. The earthy beauty of the plant, the blissful meditation of the paste creation and application, and the lovely radiance of the individual all come together for me into a magical moment when crafting a gorgeous design for someone. The interaction between a person and an ephemeral expression of elegance, guided by an artist’s hand, is a concept that resonates well with me. I strive for this special interaction with each design I create. Although I’ve dabbled in henna throughout my life, my interest in creating professional henna art took shape while living in Nepal and learning about henna’s intricate and intimate connections. I have been creating beautiful henna designs for others since 2005. I draw my inspiration from my whimsical imagination, the natural world, and cultures around the globe, creating body art of many styles, all highly unique and exquisitely sketched.

About Henna
Henna is a plant, crushed into a paste and applied as a temporary form of skin decoration. The crushed plant leaves release a compound called lawsone, which binds to keratin and stains our hair and skin. Mehndi is a name for the painted henna designs. Henna applications have a rich history throughout cultures of South Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa for thousands of years. In particular, henna is applied for special occasions, such as weddings and births. In most traditional forms, mehndi is particularly applied to women as a personal expression and bonding experience and as a representation of beauty and femininity. Over time, intricate designs have been created, many with symbolic meaning and all with artistic flair. Nowadays, mehndi has spread to worldwide, with different people equally enjoying the beautiful art form. Contemporary designs can be of any subject, although the traditional designs are still heavily popular. I enjoy creating both traditional and modern designs and am always happy to hear what you envision for your beautiful body art.

About the Application Process
My henna is homemade and patiently drawn, meaning that your personalized artistic creation is entirely natural and completely beautiful. I make the henna paste from scratch, using all natural/organic ingredients such as lemon, sugar, and essential oils. The paste is applied like frosting on top of clean, dry skin in intricate patterns. The application process time depends on the detail of the work and the size of the design. I work freehand, guided by images and imagination. After the henna dries, I set it further with a citrus mixture. Once at least a few hours have passed, gently rub the dried paste off. Wrapping the area, to seal in body heat, helps create an even deeper stain. Ideally, the wrap and paste should be left on overnight, for the deepest stain. Over the first day, the orangey-red color will deepen to reddish brown as the henna stains the layers of skin. Typically, mehndi lasts from a few days to a few weeks, depending on factors such as the location on the body, how quickly the skin exfoliates, and how often the area is scrubbed/washed/lotioned.

My Work

Check out my full gallery on


Types of Appointments

Wanting an elegant mehndi design to compliment your look?
Planning a special party and would like a henna artist there?
Thinking of the perfect relaxing gift for someone special?
I am thrilled to help with all your henna ideas and events!

I cater to individual applications, weddings and bridal showers, birthday parties, ladies' night outs, proms, grad parties, baby showers and pregnancy henna, adornment during chemotherapy, performances and productions, library and community center events, school groups, fairs, and festivals! I also teach mehndi workshops, where you will learn and practice this ancient art. I will work with you to make your mehndi design perfectly suited to your personality or event. Mystical Mehndi has many different beautiful designs for you to choose from, or bring in an idea of your own to work with! No project is too big or too small to be given detailed attention. For whatever occasion you envision, please contact me for further information on how I can make your henna art a special experience.

Price List

Individual Designs: Small: $5-15, Medium: $15-30, Large: $30+

Double Designs: $40 for a medium design on both hands, both feet, or a hand and foot.

Bridal Mehndi: $100+ for high complexity designs. Includes consultation and test session with a medium design.

Pregnancy Mehndi: $60+ for a belly design. Includes a small matching hand design.

Party Packages: Generally $100/hour or $100 minimum for by-design pricing. Travel rates may apply if more than 30 minutes outside of the Burlington area. Please contact me with details for a price quote.

Gift Certificates: Available in any amount...a perfect gift!

Don't see what you're looking for? I am happy to create henna body art that suits your needs. Please feel free to contact me for discussions and quotes regarding other applications not described above, complex requests, workshops, locations outside of the Burlington area, or whatever you have in mind!

Henna done by appointment at my residence in Colchester or at a location of your choosing

I do individual and small group appointments in my home henna lounge. For other appointments and larger groups, I am happy to travel to your preferred location. Mehndi is meant to be a bonding experience; I cherish this part of the process and will work with you to create a beautiful design in the setting of your choice.


Mehndi designs are temporary, lasting anywhere from a few days to a few weeks. The length of time that the henna stays on your skin depends on your skin type and moisture, temperature, the quality of the paste, and area of the body. As your skin exfoliates, the design lightens and disappears. To keep your mehndi design as long as possible, moisturize frequently after application and avoid harsh scrubbing.
Everyone may wear mehndi; it isn’t specific to a certain religion, culture, or people. Some mehndi designs have specific meanings. Mehndi is also applied for certain events in some parts of the world. If you would like to know more about this topic, I’d be happy to talk with you! I offer many different designs and will be glad to work with you to find a beautiful and meaningful one for you.
Sure! While mehndi is more common on women, there are traditional events where men apply henna as well. Also, there are many modern, tribal, and traditional designs that are very masculine. See my photo gallery for images of male mehndi.
The price of a design depends on the level of detail and size of the design. I am glad to work with you to make your henna experience a memorable and affordable one. Please check out my Services page for some general prices and feel free to contact me for an individualized quote.
Application may take anywhere from 5 minutes to a couple hours, depending on the complexity of the design. Most designs take 5-30 minutes. Plan to also spend time letting it dry, plus at least a couple hours of limited mobility in the area where it has been applied, to have it set properly.
First, decide on a design – bring one in, peruse my books, think one up, or allow me artistic license! I use handmade cones to draw with the henna paste on your skin (much like frosting a cake). It may feel cold and a bit tingly, just like mint. After the paste dries, I will re-wet it with a citrus mixture, to help it stain better. The paste should be left on for at least an hour before being gently brushed off. The area should not touched by soap or water until (ideally) the next day. The design will be orange and will darken over the next two days until fully red-brown. Using oils/lotions and avoiding harsh scrubbing will help prolong the color.
Henna is safe and rarely (if ever) causes a reaction in healthy adults. I only use natural ingredients to make my henna paste. By hand-making my henna, I am able to control the quality of the batch and know exactly what goes in. The paste consists of the leaves of the henna plant, essential oils and spices, and citrus juices. Henna should never be applied to skin that is broken, already irritated, or otherwise compromised. If you have sensitive skin, or are wary of trying henna, I would be happy to do a small test patch on your skin and/or provide you with a detailed list of my ingredients.
Black henna is not real henna! Real henna comes from the leaves, twigs, and buds of the henna plant. These all contain lawsone, the natural staining agent that leaves the color on your skin. Black henna can refer to indigo, which was once used to dye hair. Other products labeled black henna could be a dangerous mix of chemicals, not meant for the skin. These could cause serious skin reactions and should be avoided. I only use 100% natural henna, NOT black henna.
Henna may be applied anywhere on the body. In most cultures and traditional designs, it is applied mainly to the hands and feet. The staining agent in henna, lawsone, binds to keratin. Because the skin on our hands and feet contain higher levels of keratin than elsewhere on the body, henna tends to stain darkest in these areas. However, henna will stain the skin anywhere on the body. I use quality, fresh ingredients in my henna paste to ensure a dark stain on all areas and skin types/colors.

Get in Touch

Please call or email me to discuss your beautiful mehndi application! Feel free to visit my Facebook site for more information and pictures.

References available upon request.

phone: 541-941-1311

Email: bess@mysticalmehndi.com