A mum was shocked when her four year old daughter returned from childcare with a temporary henna tattoo on her arm.

Sharing on Mumsnet, the mother asked other parents what they thought.

“When my husband picked up our daughter (4) from nursery, one of the staff said she had drawn her  initials in Henna on our daughters hand because she insisted,” wrote the mum, identified only by her username Pencilcase123.

“Hubby did not complain. I am baffled as to why the nursery would have Henna out in the first place.

“It is brown Henna and I don’t think it is particularly dangerous but I am quite miffed that nursery staff thought it was ok to give my 4 year old a temporary tattoo. Would you complain about this?”


Other parents on the forum agreed with the concerned mum, saying the nursery should have sought consent.

We do know that numerous children have reacted to henna in the past resulting in some nasty chemical burns.

Would you be shocked if your child returned from childcare or school with a henna tattoo?

Share your comments below

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  • It’s an unusual practice to do this without approval and I would probably suggest this to the staff.


  • Definitely approval first, and perhaps a test patch if parent gave the ok


  • I wouldnt be happy if they didnt seek approval first.


  • Normally they seek permission for something like this however I don’t think it’s that big of a deal.


  • Considering they usually inform you of all manner of happenings this is such an odd thing to do without prior consent. I wouldn’t be happy if it happened.

    • It is indeed an odd thing to do without consent.


  • I probably would have been ok with this. It can be dangerous, yes, but if the child had shown the slightest discomfort I’m sure they would have cleaned it off and seeked medical advice. Sometimes you just get caught up in the moment and don’t think things through. I do wonder if she would have complained so much if it was one of those other temporary tattoos that kids get at birthday parties?


  • Given that henna can be dangerous, I’d be pretty unhappy.


  • A peculiar activity for a childcare centre and permission should be requested for such activities.
    The possibility of a reaction is a terrible thought too.


  • I would be furious. My children would have an allergic reaction which I would then have to take care of because some silly ninny thought it necessary to put something entirely unnecessary on my child’s skin!


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