Thanaka is a cream that Burmese women have been using for over 2000 years as a make-up. They apply the cream to their faces in a variety of ways, but common designs include circles or squares on the cheeks. The cream is not only used for cosmetic reasons but also to protect their skin from the sun and to provide a cooling effect.
Thanaka wood vendor waiting for buyers, Pyay
Thanaka wood comes from the Murraya tree. It is used to make thanaka cream.
Pre-prepared thanaka paste to which you just add water.
Thanaka paste balls ready to use.
Making thanaka cream by grinding the bark with a little water on a circular stone called kyauk pyin.
Girl with thanaka make-up
And here is a link for a video demonstration of applying thanaka paste on face
For more stories by Juan Gallardo visit http://www.myanmartravelessentials.com/Photo Essay: Thanaka, the Make-Up of Burma,