The Bindi/Pottu/Teep is worn on the forehead just above the eyebrows. It sits on the sixth chakra or the third eye of the woman and has significant religious importance. Derived from the Sanskrit word “Bindu”, meaning a Dot. Originally worn by just South-Asian women, this accessory is now used on the International Fashion Ramps.
Pottu in Tamil/Kannada/Malayalam, Bottu in Telugu, Teep in Bengali, Chandlo in Gujarati, Tikli in Marathi, Phot in Assamese.
When is it used?
Worn by young girls and women of all ages practically everyday. Fancier ones are used for special occasions such as a wedding or any other festivity. Brides tend to wear elaborate Bindi sets that cover the arch area over the eyebrows. It is called the “Peer”. The Peer could be made of just red and white or ornate ones made of shiny rhinestones. The earliest and the simplest way this is by making a round dot with red kumkum powder.On an external or more cosmetic usage point of view, it is used to enhance the lady’s features. However, this would be just scratching the surface.
Image Courtesy: Wedding Bells
What are they made from?
The traditional ones are just made of vermillion powder applied with the fingers. However, the more popular ones are the stick-on ones that are widely available in the markets. Plain ones to the fancier ones made with shiny stones, these make for great fashion statements.
Where would you find them?
Usually available in Novelty Shops or Fancy Stores.
- As is the case with the other aspects of Solah Shringar, the usage of Bindi dates back to pre-historic times with references to the sacred Hindu texts.
- Used as Tikka to adorn the forehead, by both men and women from the Vedic times.
- The Bindi rests on the forehead chakra which is said to be the exit point for the Kundalini energy.
- By using the Bindi, it is said to help retain energy and improve concentration.
- Depending on the region that the bride belongs to, the style of wearing the bindi would vary.
- For instance, the Bengali bride would wear a large round red one.
- In the South, brides generally wear smaller ones.
- There is a superstition that a married woman should never leave her forehead bare without the bindi.