Ecofriendly HoliHoli is one of the most colorful festivals in the world. The festival falls on the last full moon day in the month of  Falgun of the Hindu Lunar Calendar. This festival commemorates spring and various associated mythological stories. The festival is also believed to be a celebration of Radha’s undying love for Lord Krishna. Another record states that Lord Shiva had destroyed Kamadeva, but later revived him for the sake of his wife Rati. Kamadeva was brought to life only as a mental image, so this festival celebrates this event.

Since Holi reflects the various hues of the spring season it is also known as the Festival of Colors. People smear each other with dry powder or colored water, while some use water guns and colored water-filled balloons for their water fight. Earlier colors used during Holi were prepared from the flowers of trees. Most of the colors obtained from them were highly beneficial for the skin.

Eco Friendly ColorsNow-a-days, with the rapid commercialization of the festival, manufacturers have started producing artificial colors, which are inexpensive as compared to natural colors. People must realize that artificial colors consist of a large number of chemicals, which can have severe ill-effects on one’s health. The following information about chemicals used in the colors supports the statement:

  • Black Lead Oxide - Renal Failure
  • Green Copper Sulphate - Allergy and temporary blindness in eyes
  • Silver Aluminum Bromide - Causes Cancer (Carcinogenic)
  • Red Mercury Sulphate - Can cause Skin Cancer

One can easily avoid the above mentioned health hazards by opting for the Eco-friendly colors. These are easily available in the market, but can also be easily made at home.

Method of Making Eco-Friendly Holi Colors at Home

Green Color:

Green color can be obtained by mixing two teaspoons of Mehendi in one litre of water.

Blue Color:

Take some dried Jacaranda flowers and then grind them to get a blue colored powder. Store this in an airtight bottle. Hibiscus flowers can also be dried and powdered to obtain blue color.

Red Color:

Take some dry red rose petals and grind them to get red powder. This color can also be achieved by boiling red sandalwood powder or pomegranate peels in water.

Saffron Color:

Add a little turmeric or sandalwood powder to rose water to get a saffron colored solution.

Yellow Color:

Combine two teaspoons of turmeric powder with four teaspoons of gram flour to obtain a vibrant yellow powder. Dried petals of flowers like Amaltas, Marigold or Chrysanthemums can be powdered to yield different shades of yellow color. All the ingredients used to make natural colors are medicinal in nature and have no harmful effects on ones skin or health.

An Awareness Campaign for Holi

A campaign can be organized in ones neighborhood to convey the advantages of celebrating an Eco-friendly Holi. A number of cities in India adopt this method to educate people regarding the subject.

Bonfire Hazards on Holi

The ritual of lighting a bonfire has serious environmental repercussions, since the process needs a lot of wood which puts both the trees and the environment at risk. In order to prevent this, one can celebrate in a community and kindle a single bonfire. This will result in lower consumption of wood, hence less pollution.

Conserve Water on Holi

Many cities in India suffer from water scarcity. Water is used (rather wasted) during Holi while playing with water guns or throwing water balloons. One should act as a responsible citizen and try to save this natural resource. In order to avoid this crisis one can do their bit and opt for a dry Holi. Moreover, one can always celebrate this festival in many other ways rather than polluting the environment.

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