Sunday, September 28, 2014

Pregnant Belly Henna Art!

During my first pregnancy, I was kind of self-conscious about my belly. I don't know if it was the season of infertility or the fact I had never been big before, but I wasn't really into exposed pregnant bellies. I only have a few photos of my belly uncovered from that pregnancy and only one of my big belly at the very end. 

This time around, I'm more relaxed about my change in size. I have a better understanding of how fast pregnancy goes by. I'm very fortunate to get to do it again. 

Part of the relaxed mindset about my body included the desire to have a little fun with my belly! I found a henna artist nearby in Plant City, Starlight Mehndi, who does pregnant belly henna art. 

(By the way, this blog post ONLY features photos of my uncovered belly.) 

Friday morning, Zane, Daisy, and I went to Darla's house and got my belly painted. It was a really fun experience. I brought some inspiration photos from my maternity pinterest board. She looked them over and came up with her own cool design. Here are a few progression photos that Zane took:  

The final design included Amy's initials! The whole thing took about two hours. Daisy even got a little flower painted on her hand.

After she finished painting, she dabbed the henna with a sugar and lemon juice mix and covered my belly in unrolled cotton balls. From there, she wrapped self-adhesive bandage around my belly to keep the cotton balls in place. I had to keep that on all day and not mess with it or get it wet for 24-36 hours so the henna could set and stain really well. By the end of the night it was pretty itchy.

I slept in the bandage, which was kind of hot and itchy. The next morning, the henna was flaking off on its own, so I stood in the shower and brushed/picked all of it off. Zane helped with the lower belly, because I can only see the top.

It continued to itch throughout the day. I texted Darla about the itchiness, and she said to put coconut oil or olive oil on it. I slathered it on and walked around the house with my shirt up. As the day when on, it darkened from light amber to a dark orange.

Car selfie! 

That night, the itchiness started to concern me. I googled it (wrong decision) and found all these gross allergic reactions to henna. Darla made her henna from scratch using natural henna powder, lemon juice, sugar, and eucalyptus oil, so I know there were no toxins in the henna. I think that maybe my tummy doesn't like the lemon juice or eucalyptus oil.

I wasn't supposed to wash it yet, but I ended up using soap and water with a wash cloth to get the coconut oil off my belly. Then I put regular Jergens lotion on it and went to bed. That helped decrease the itchiness.

I think washing it probably caused it to be lighter than it would have been on Sunday had I not washed it. Oh well.

Sunday we took a family beach day to Fort Desoto, and I wore a bikini, mainly because I had this cool henna tattoo. This photo angle makes my belly look ridiculously ginormous and somewhat fake:

I'm happy I got my belly painted with henna, but if I ever do it again, I'll probably specify that it was super itchy and request that the henna paint be made without lemon juice. If I don't touch it too much, then it doesn't itch, but any kind of touch, including clothes, starts to irritate my belly. Kind of a bummer, but that's okay. 

Getting a cool henna tattoo makes the last weeks of pregnancy a little more fun as I wait.

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