This Article is From May 17, 2023

Lupita Nyong'o Was "Excited And Terrified" About Mehendi On Her Bald Head

Lupita Nyong’o used Jagua, a natural skin dye from South America as henna 

Lupita Nyong'o Was 'Excited And Terrified' About Mehendi On Her Bald Head

Image was shared by Lupita.(courtesy: urvashirautela)

Lupita Nyong'o was one among the many celebrities who attended the opening night of Mira Nair's stage adaptation of Monsoon Wedding, the musical at St. Ann's Warehouse in New York City. The Academy Award-winning actress attended the special event in a saree, gold earrings, and an exquisite henna tattoo on her bald head. Explaining the thought behind the tattoo on her head, she wrote: “THE STORY OF MY HEAD: I met @hennabysabeen last year at a wedding in Pakistan. She did the #HennaDesign for the bride, and I was ASTOUNDED by the INTRICACY and BEAUTY of her work. There was something unique about the way she expressed herself in henna art. And I promised myself, ‘One day I will have a reason to work with Sabeen.'”

The Mira Nair event came as the perfect opportunity for collaboration, the caption further explains. She continued, “1.5 years later, when I got the invitation to attend the opening night of my dear friend, Mira Nair's @monsoonmusical, I was scrambling at the last minute to find something to wear. I borrowed a sari and jewellery from @mishajapanwala, the bride from Pakistan, but the look didn't feel complete… And then, in the middle of the night, an image SHOT into my mind of a henna design covering my bald head. I could do something special and different, to celebrate the culture using the canvas readily available to me! I was so excited by the idea that I could not go back to sleep. Misha connected me to Sabeen, and we were ON OUR WAY…”

Offering more details, Lupita Nyong'o said, “Sabeen had NEVER designed for a head before; I had never done such a thing before either. My only prompt to her was that I wanted a widow's peak (homage to the bindhi, borla / maang tikka), the rest was ALL HER INNOVATION. She suggested #Jagua, a natural dye from the Jagua fruit of South America that would be dark enough to give [a] good contrast to my dark skin.”

The actress said that they were excited but worried that it would not turn out as they envisioned. “We were both excited and terrified. What if it went wrong or looked funny? Well, I thought, I can always wear a head wrap. But Sabeen BROUGHT IT! We stopped now and again so that I could give her feedback because she was DETERMINED to leave me a happy client. And Sabeen was METICULOUS. She did not stop until it was perfect. When we looked at the finished head... we were both GRINNING!” 

Speaking about the process, the Wakanda Forever star said, “It takes about 24 hours for the dye to really show up. And when it came in, in FULL CONTRAST the next day, I was simply MOVED. It was beautiful. It was bold and elegant; it had a point of view. We had not played it safe, and it had paid off. And I had found a new way to express myself without hair! So, the moral of this story is: DARE YOURSELF TO SEEK OUT BEAUTY IN NEW WAYS. And, Sabeen, thank you for bestowing on me the beauty of your hand and history!”

Check out the images here:

Preceding this, Lupita Nyong'o also shared her inspiration for the look. Sharing various photos of the look, the star said, “When we are invited to an Indian wedding, we use what we got to honour and celebrate. #BaldieBrigade. Congratulations to the incomparable Mira Nair on the opening of her musical adaptation of the beloved story #monsoonwedding (@monsoonmusical). Now playing at St. Ann's Warehouse.”

Lupita Nyong'o and Mira Nair have collaborated in the film Queen of Katwe. Additionally, Lupita Nyong'o had the opportunity to intern under Mira Nair while working on The Namesake.