Indian Bindi Meanings and Uses

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Indian bindi body stickers have a rich history and can be used in many different ways. There are both traditional bindi uses and modern bindi meaning, but bindi is significant in many ways.

Bindi as Tilaka

Tilaka (or tilak/tika/tikii) is a mark on the body with religious significance. This is one of the traditional uses of bindi.

  • Many Hindu women wear the traditional red dot (normally sindoor powder rather than a sticker style bindi) to signify marriage, and single Hindu women wear a black tilak to signify that they are single.
  • Hindu, Jani, and Buddist women sometimes wear bindi, specifically the simple red dot form of bindi as a chakra focus for the third eye. This focus point is said to bring energy and concentration to the wearer and help focus internal sight. This why you often see yogis wearing bindi, to complement the sixth chakra.
  • In some cultures both men and women wear bindi as a symbol of respecting one’s intellect.
  • Bindi is also a traditional gift for many holidays, both religious and secular. Weddings, Diwali, and Karwa Chuth celebrations are bindi-giving occasions.

Within these traditions are a huge variety of variations and meanings and this is by no means an exhaustive list of religious symbolism for bindi.

Bindi is just one form of tilak. Other forms of tilak are marks on the feet, horizontal or vertical line on the face, certain tattoos in some cultures, and such.

 

Bindi as Fashion

In addition to religious significance, bindi has a long history as a purely decorative jewelry fashion accessory. Chinese women have worn bindi as fashion accessory since the Tang dynasty in the second century. Many non-religious women in both Asia, South Asia, and Southeast Asia also were bindi for purely decorative purposes.

In more recent times, Bollywood has made wearing bindi a fashion statement for those with traditional ties to bindi and those without. Bindi as a fashion accessory includes Western women in the Americas and in Europe, but we have a our Indian and Chinese sisters to thank for paving the way as using bindi for decorative jewelry.

 

Bindi and Henna

Bindi is a popular way to decorate henna tattoos. bindi is used both to decorate henna while the paste is still on the skin and applied to henna stains after the paste is removed.

 

Bindi and Crafts

Bindi can be used for any craft you like! Decorate scrapbook pages, picture frames, dollhouse furniture, or your cell phone.