Happy Sawan ka Mahina! The holy month of Shravan has begun when devotees of Lord Shiva fast and pray. Some even carry kawar and travel to the holy destination where Lord Bholenath is said to reside. However, married women fast for Lord Shiva as well and an important part of their devotion is considered to be solah shringar which is the 16-step beauty adornment ritual. Solah Shringar doesn't just make women look prettier but is also said to bring in good luck. The sixteen adornments are to bring happiness and prosperity to the house. The auspicious sixteen adornments ritual is also mentioned in the Rigveda and it is said to not only enhance beauty but bring in positivity.  Let us discuss in detail the components of these 16 step beauty ritual and their importance.

  1. Bindi: Bindi is placed between both your eyebrows with kumkum and is said to symbolise the third eye of Lord Shiva. One can use either kumkum or vermilion to apply bindi and it is said to bring in prosperity.
  2. Vermilion (Sindoor):  Sindoor is considered important and is applied during the marriage by the husband who pledges to accompany her throughout her life.
  3. Kajal: Along with making your eyes look more beautiful it is said to protect women from evil eyes around the world.
  4. Mehndi: Without mehndi, the solah shringar is considered incomplete.  Applying mehndi on the feet and hands is said to make your life prosperous and that it attracts happiness in the married life.  It is believed that the darker the henna leaves stains on the hands the more the woman receives love.
  5. Traditional saree or Shadin ka Joda: Women can wear a traditional saree, preferably in red during Sawan. Wedding dress is considered very special. This forms an important part of Solah Shringar.
  6. Gajra or flowers in the hair: A small garland of fragrant flowers that is used to decorate the hairstyles donned by the woman doesn't does beautify her look but also makes her smell good.  It is said to make your life sweet-smelling always away from hardships.
  7. Maang Tika: This jewellery worn in the middle of the forehead, along with vermilion is believed to show the right path in life.
  8. Nose ring: It is considered auspicious for married women to wear nose ornaments. Generally, women wear small nose pins or rings. It is said to bring in happiness.
  9. Earrings:  Wearing ear ornament is believed to keep evil at bay and only makes you hear good news in life.
  10. Mangal Sutra: Wearing mangalsutra is said to bring in harmony in the marriage. In India, the ritual of wearing a Mangal Sutra is considered as a symbol of love.
  11. Armlet: This ornament either in gold or silver is said to give women strength to protect the family against any bad things happening around them.
  12. Bangles: Bangles have been considered a symbol of euphoria. The colours of bangles hold special importance. Red coloured bangles symbolize happiness and satisfaction. The green colour symbolizes the prosperity of the family after marriage.
  13. Ring: The ring has been considered a symbol of mutual love and trust between husband and wife in the form of engagement. It has even been mentioned in the ancient scripture Ramayana.
  14. Waistband (Kamarbandh): The waistband is the ornament worn around the waist. The newlyweds hang a bunch of keys on that ornament too. The waistband is said to give power to the woman.
  15. Nettle(Bichua): The silver nettle is worn in the middle three fingers except for the toe and the little finger. It helps you guide to the right path.
  16. Payal: The jewellery worn on the feet is usually made of silver. Some cultures do not accept gold Payal or anklet because gold is considered a sacred metal, from which crowns made for the deities and it is believed that wearing gold on feet insults Goddess Lakshmi.

You don't have to do the solah shringar every day during Sawan. You can just do it on Mondays which is considered very important during the holy month of Shravan.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jul 09, 2020 03:24 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).