In the Hindu faith, Kumkuma and turmeric are renowned as the holiest of materials. For centuries the visible symbols, known as “kunkuma,” “Sindoor,” or “the bindi” were applied with various colors of Kumkuma. The sacred Kumkuma powder comes in a variety of different hues, tones and shades. Each color represents a symbolic meaning incorporated into every aspect of Indian life. Red symbolizes protection, commitment and purity. Numerous rituals and traditions, notably wedding ceremonies include the color red. Yellow represents peace, wisdom and spirituality. As the color fire and reflection of the Supreme Being, many wear yellow to celebrate the Festival of Spring. Blue signifies infinity, humanity, healing and associated with Lord Krishna. Traditionally only the working class wore blue colored garments. The associated meanings of vitality, mysticism and creativity are integral of purple. Green symbolizes fertility and prosperity and in the past exclusive to the merchant class.


The application of Kumkuma to the forehead in the form of a bindi symbolizes the strong desire a wife possesses for the success and longevity of her marriage. An integral part of most wedding ceremonies is the incorporation of turmeric and its purifying properties. Through the purification process, all sins are removed from the bride, allowing her to prepare for the marriage ceremonies. The application of Kumkuma also stands for good luck. According to Hindu astrology, the center of the forehead represents the place of the Mesha Rashi and Lord of Mesha.