Why is Kajal Used to Ward Off The Evil Eye?

What is the "Evil Eye?"

It is a curse transmitted through an evil glare, usually one inspired by envy. The envy in turn manifests itself as a curse that will undo their good fortune.

A Greek philosopher suggested a scientific explanation: 

The human eye had the power of releasing invisible rays of energy that were, in some cases, potent enough to kill children or small animals. 

Is Kajal harmful... or harmless?

Although kajal has been found to contain lead and thus harmful for babies, an analysis of various samples found in Egyptian tombs proved otherwise.

By recreating ancient recipes, reported by Greco-Roman authors, scientists were able to test the effects of lead compounds on skin cells. The study showed that the lead compounds found in kohl did in fact serve a significant medical function.

Alternative Methods for warding off Evil Eye for Newborns:

  • Tie a black thread around the left ankle
  • Tie a black beaded amulet around the wrist/ankle
  • Keep the milk bottle covered
  • Nurse the baby in private

In addition to newborns, kajal is also shown on:

  • South Indian bride's cheek
  • Bharatnatyam Dancers
  • Goddess Kali
  • Kathakali Dancers


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Modi Toys is a children's brand of toys and books inspired by ancient Hindu culture. We exist to spread joy and to spark curiosity in the next generation through our innovative soft plush toys, illustrated children's books and free learning resources. Our weekly Theology Thursday series covers a wide range of topics rooted in Hinduism to help us better understand the origins of traditions, the symbolic meaning of rituals, and the stories behind Hindu holidays and festivals. The more we can understand "the why" behind this 4,000 year ancient religion, and make sense of it in this modern age, the greater we can appreciate and preserve our rich Hindu culture. While we take great care in thoroughly researching the information presented, we may occasionally get some things wrong. We encourage a healthy and open dialogue so we can learn together. Please leave a comment below or email us directly at support@moditoys.com to address any concerns. 


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