Vol. 130, No. 7 | September 2015 Cosmetics & Toiletries® | 29
kumkum, other shades, particularly of liquid kumkum, have become a daily part of makeup routines.
Powder and paste kumkum are typically available in
shades of red, whereas liquid kumkum is available in
white, black, red, green, yellow, purple, blue, etc. It
is even available in multiple-shade packages of five,
seven or 11 shades.
The manufacture of powdered kumkum is similar
to sindoor, although it differs in base materials.
These include starch, talc, zinc stearate, magnesium
carbonates, etc. To manufacture liquid kumkum,
however, a viscous gum is prepared and the color is
Formulas for this product vary based on the form;
some examples are included here.
Liquid kumkum: Water (aqua), qs to 100%;
thicker—mostly natural gums, 1. 5-2.0%; sorbitol,
4-5%; sugar, 4-5%; preservative, qs; approved pigments, 10-15%; and fragrance (parfum), qs.
Kumkum paste: Castor oil, qs to 100%; beeswax,
9%; preservative, qs; approved pigments, qs; talc, 6%;
and fragrance (parfum), qs.
Kumkum powder: Starch, qs to 100%; magnesium
stearate, 1.5%; talc, 1%; preservative, qs; and fragrance (parfum), qs.
“Bindi” is Sanskrit for “dot” and refers to the dot
applied to a woman’s forehead between the eyebrows. 4
Besides the significance of its location at the sixth
chakra, noted previously, its value is aesthetic, to
adorn the forehead. Bindis traditionally are peel-off
products, available in different shapes and sizes—
from round, square, rectangular and oblong, to more
intricate tree, snake, arrow, flower, star, etc., designs.
This format is convenient to transport and re-apply.
The bindi could be considered an advancement in
liquid kumkum, as its development arose from the
need for improved convenience.
The base material of a bindi typically is velvet, the
back side of which is gummed. Apart from velvet,
silk, satin and plastic materials also are used. Today,
bindis are often embellished with sequins, gold dust,
pearls and even stones, both artificial and/or precious. They are packaged on release paper, which is
usually silicone coated.
Some traditionalists have expressed concern over
the influence of Western culture curtailing the use
of bindis, although in reality this is not the case. In
fact, since they have reached the West, bindis are
showcased by models as a fashion accessory. Manu-