Bindis have roots in Asia as a symbolic decoration, as well as an aid in spiritual guidance. In India, a woman may wear a red bindi to show that she is married, while in China, the red bindi is a symbol of good fortune. Practicing Hindus and Buddhists use a bindi on the forehead to draw energy to and from the 6th chakra. Though it’s been around for centuries, the bindi is hotter than ever right now.
Bindi’s and Cultural Appropriation
The act of stripping a cultural symbol, whether it be food, clothing or social behaviour, from its original culture and applying it to the practices of a different cultural group. Critics of non-South Asian women wearing the bindi say it is generally seen as edgy and fashion forward. Fans and media praise celebrities for their bold “fashion” choices. But when South Asians wear bindis in public, it is a symbol of their failure to assimilate. On celebrities it is cool, but on South Asians it is another thing that makes them different than other girls.