Sindoor is an essential part of the wed life. Basically the vermilion constitutes of Turmeric and limestone. According to the Indian culture, once a woman gets married she has to apply Vermilion that is Sindoor or Kumkum. It is the basic symbol of the wedlock and the major element of the ‘solah sringar’. Wiping of Vermilion is considered inauspicious and symbolises a widow. The origin of Sindoor is from the times of great epic Ramayana, Sita ji used to put it for the long life of her husband Lord Rama. Some holy scripts say that Parvati ji also applied it before she went in front of her husband Lord Shiva. The other epic Mahabharata too mentions Vermilion, when Draupati got insulted she wiped her sindoor to express her outrage.
‘Ek chutki Sindoor ki keemat’ we all know by now but do you know about the importance of different shades of Sindoor? Yes, the Vermilion comes in different colours and each colour has its own significance. In fact the orange colour Vermilion is known as sindoor whereas the red one is called Kumkum, though these terms are simultaneously used. When talking about the shades, here is some interesting piece of information you would love to read about:
Thick Yellow Vermilion
This type of sindoor is very famous in Bihar. There is a well known annual prayer service, Chhat Pooja, held in this particular region. In this 3 day ritual, the married ladies worship ‘Chhati Mata’ and ‘Surya Dev’ by offering them certain sweets and ‘Pakwaans’. The thick yellow Vermilion is an essential part of it. Women put this yellow vermilion straight from nose to head. It is because they believe that longer the vermillion one puts the longer will be the life of their spouse. The yellow colour also represents the sun. It is believed that if ‘Surya Dev’ is pleased then he will protect every woman’s ‘Suhag’ i.e Husband.
This type of vermilion is also referred as ‘Kesari’ due to the presence of saffron, kesar, in it. Have you ever wondered why in almost every other temple, the statue of Lord Hanuman is of orange colour? The orange coloured vermilion is significant for the same reason. It is because one day Hanuman ji saw Sita ji putting an orange dot in the centre of her forehead; out of curiosity he asked the reason. Sita ji told him that applying sindoor would increase the life span of her husband Lord Rama. Being an ardent Rama Bhakt he immediately applied oil and kesari sindoor all over his body. So, the people especially in UP and Bihar consider orange sindoor very auspicious.
Red is the most common type of vermilion applied by the ladies across India. Mainly in West Bengal, there is belief that Kumkum protects a person from any kind of bad omen. It is said that putting red colour would please Goddess Parvati who would in turn protect your husband from all sorts of danger. Red basically depicts power and strength. This also has an astrological significance which says that kumkum is applied on the forehead and the Rashi present on the forehead is Aries, Mesh, the rashi lord that is directly associated with Mesh lord is Mars. And Mars is Red in colour.
Not only these, now-a-days people use many other shades as well. The designer Masaba Gupta is famous for using different types of sindoor like Pink, maroon, majenta, while styling her models. And thus her designs are highly appreciated by the traditional lovers.
There are many myths and folklores related to the application of Sindoor, one of the interesting fact states that the amount of sindoor which falls on the bride’s nose while her husband applies it on her for the first time during the wedlock ceremony represents how much he will love her throughout the life. Sindoor not only depicts the blissful married life but in the current period it is actually turning out to be a fashion statement for the newlyweds.
Many new age brides like Priyanka Chopra, Anushka Sharma, Sonam Kapoor and Deepika Padukone are often seen flaunting their sindoor at various religious ocassions. Not only hindus but other religions are opting it as well. Many muslim women apply sindoor under their burkha. So, after knowing all this, which colour are you into? Do let us know in the comment section. No matter what colour you choose Vermilion will definitely keep your marriage blessed and will brush up your styling sense as well.