Thanaka on child close-up portrait – Yangon, Myanmar, 2005

Thanaka: what is it?

The thanaka is a tree growing in the drier areas of Myanmar. The eponymous paste, made by grinding the bark against a wet stone is used cosmetically by Burmese people.

The trees should mature at least 35 years before they become viable.

Young boy with thanaka on his face. Yangon, Myanmar (Burma), August 13, 2005 - Canon 300D, Canon 35mm f/2
Young boy with thanaka on his face. Yangon, Myanmar (Burma), August 13, 2005 – Canon 300D, Canon 35mm f/2

According to Burmese people, thanaka is not only a good protection from the sun but also lightens the skin (Asian people don’t want to be tanned like westerners but have their skin the whiter as possible). Thanaka is wearied by all women, children and also young men.

Is Yangon the capital of Burma?

Yangon or Rangoon is the former capital of Burma: the actual capital is Naypyidaw.

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