LIFESTYLE

Artist Helps Breast Cancer Patient 'Feel Beautiful' By Painting Intricate Henna Crown On Her Head

20/10/2014 11:43 BST | Updated 20/10/2014 11:59 BST

For many people, hair loss due to cancer treatment can be traumatic. But one artist has found a way to help cancer patients feel beautiful.

World famous henna artist Ash Kumar, 35, spent over an hour giving a cranial makeover to Dipika Patel - who lost her hair in due to treatment for breast cancer.

The crown was created by Ash for Breast Cancer Awareness Month in partnership with the Henna Heals project.

The project works with women who have lost their hair to promote empowerment, confidence and beauty.

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Henna Heals for Breast Cancer Awareness Month

Dipika Patel, from Uxbridge, London, was diagnosed with breast cancer in May 2014.

The 43-year-old decided to shave her head completely after her first treatment left her hair falling out in clumps.

"I think the main reason I agreed to the henna crown was to raise awareness for breast cancer in the Asian community in particular," Dipika said.

“It is brushed under the carpet and it isn’t talked about a lot – you think its not going to happen to you.”

Dipika has been supported throughout her treatment by her husband, family and four-year-old son – but often wears a scarf out on the street to cover her shaved head.

“When I was diagnosed I was very shocked and upset," she said. “People still think ‘she’s got cancer she’s going to die’ and it’s still a lot of fear factor.

“When I started losing my hair it did upset me because it was coming out in clumps. All I was seeing was hair everywhere. I asked my husband to shave the rest of it off – I cried through the whole thing.

“I wanted to control the crisis, I didn’t wanted it to control me so I chose to get rid of it in only one cut.”

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Ash used natural henna, crystals and body glitter to create the stunning crown, which will last around 12 days.

He used Dipika’s eye colour and skin tone as inspiration for the royal design. Dipika was transformed by a web of brown gold and copper henna lines highlighted with crystals.

Ash said: “I don’t really choose a pattern but I’m inspired more by the personality. I look at the colour and shade of their skin, which gives me kind of a palette to create a mood from it.

“Today I’m working on a project with Henna Heals, which is a wonderful movement. I created a henna crown for a wonderful lady to bring empowerment, confidence and beauty.”

Dipika said the makeover had brought her some happiness in this difficult time.

Dipika said: “It was amazing, I couldn’t believe how beautiful it is, it is beyond all expectations - I can’t take the smile off my face.

“I think the henna crown is very empowering and I’m going to be walking out of here without a hat on because I want everyone to see it.

“After everything you have to go through with cancer treatment something like this makes you feel beautiful.”