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Alta or Rose Bengal is a deep red dye made from lac and used to grace the feet and hands of women and dancers in the North East regions of India. I’ve always seen the dye in glass bottles that stain red even after using it once, making it difficult to store and handle, especially after one is dressed up. Glass bottles also make it scary to hold because if this breaks and falls you’ll have very deep red dye stains all over the place, forever.

So it was nice to find a plastic bottle shaped to be held comfortably. Found this one right outside a durga temple in Calcutta. Love the kitschness and joba-ness of the cover and love the shape of the bottle and the chauka depiction on the front. The chauka is the basic position in Odissi and symbolic of Lord Jagannath.

Not too sure how well that stopper will work once open, but will definitely be more seal-proof than the screw-type cap.

 

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