Empowering Healing through Henna: How Alyssa Corbin uses body art to help others heal, grieve, and remember


In Waynesboro, Virginia, there resides a remarkable henna and body artist named Alyssa Corbin, the owner of Glitter Bee Art Co., whose art transcends beyond mere aesthetics. With an unwavering passion for helping people heal from life’s most challenging experiences, Alyssa has transformed her grandmother’s artistic legacy into a source of comfort and solace for those in need.

Alyssa’s journey as a henna and body artist has been deeply influenced by the cherished memories of her artistic grandmother. As a child, Alyssa spent countless hours by her side, watching her inspire others. “She’s the reason that almost anytime you see my work and business, there’s a sunflower in it because she used to grow the big Russian kind that were bigger than her house. She encouraged us to be artistic and to try new things. She would make playdough with us. She would write messages to us in Ivory soap on the mirror in the room we were staying in. She was an all the way around awesome, awesome lady. She taught me a lot about what it means to love people and what it means to be kind and courteous and compassionate,” Alyssa explains.

“Henna starts out very dark, much like grief and then gradually fades over time. Realizing that was really profound for me especially knowing that it can impact people on that level. It’s one of those things where you just kind of don’t feel worthy of holding that kind of space.”

alyssa corbin

To honor her beloved grandmother’s artistic legacy, Alyssa chose the sunflower as the emblem of her own henna and body art business. Through this symbol, she carries forth her grandmother’s spirit, using her artistic skills to touch lives and bring positivity to those who need it most.

Alyssa has taken the traditional art of henna, often associated with festive celebrations, and elevated it to a powerful tool for healing emotional wounds. Her unique approach involves designing henna patterns that convey stories of resilience, renewal, and hope.


“It’s the henna lawsonia plant. It’s kind of a shrubby bush that grows in arid climates. That’s why it’s found so much in the Middle East and in West Africa, and in Southeast Asia. And it was first recorded as body art in ancient Egypt. Cleopatra wore it. At that point, it was probably just a big blob in the middle of the hand but it was very common. They used it to do the tips of mummies fingertips as it was part of the mummification process. Ancient Egyptians were so advanced so I don’t know if they just knew that it was an anti-fungal. Henna has a lot of really interesting qualities. When it is used for body art, it is just the crushed up leaves of the plant. For my own recipe, I use the plant, brown sugar, water, and lavender essential oil.”

One touching story that captures Alyssa’s impact involves a woman who experienced the heartbreak of a miscarriage. Struggling to cope with their grief, the woman and her husband sought solace in Alyssa’s art. With profound empathy and sensitivity, Alyssa crafted a delicate henna design on the woman’s stomach, symbolizing growth, strength, and the promise of new beginnings. As the henna dried and the pattern began to reveal itself, the couple found comfort and healing in the process, fostering a sense of closure and connection as they embarked on the journey of healing together.

Driven by her belief in the therapeutic power of art, Alyssa has embarked on a noble initiative known as “The Randi Project.” The project is named after her close friend that passed away from cancer.

Alyssa offers no-cost henna flower crown sessions to individuals battling cancer. The henna flower crowns, delicately adorned with sunflowers and other blossoms, symbolize resilience, beauty, and hope in the face of adversity. Through these sessions, Alyssa aims to uplift the spirits of cancer warriors, helping them find strength, courage, and joy amid the challenges of their journey. Alyssa’s henna and body artistry go beyond just creating beautiful designs. They serve as a powerful medium to help individuals navigate the darkest moments in their lives. Through her compassionate approach and her deep-rooted connection to her grandmother’s artistic legacy, Alyssa touches hearts and facilitates healing, one henna design at a time.

Waynesboro is undoubtedly blessed to have such a talented and empathetic artist in its midst. Alyssa’s work stands as a testament to the transformative power of art, uniting people in their struggles, healing wounds, and inspiring hope in the face of adversity. As Alyssa continues her artistic journey, she will undoubtedly leave an indelible mark on the lives of those she touches, reminding us all that beauty and strength can blossom even in the most challenging of circumstances.

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