Yes Karin ,,,, I am a member of CS 50+ travellers group ,,, many of our friends in this group travel & meet other members and host each other ,,, I`ve many women friends from India ,,, they`ve visited me and stayed at my Summer house,,, they do wear T-shirt & blue jeans in every day life but the wear Sari ,,, clothes only in certain occasions. and celebrating days.
It is a Hindu ritual. On a woman it is usually a Bindi dot and a man generally uses lines or other marks. It usually is paste of ashes, Sandalwood, etc.. Up to a few years back they had me teaching a course in non-western religions and whenever I would see Christians on Ashe Wednesday with their ashes in that Bindi spot I would make a bad joke on Twitter and elsewhere saying, "The whole country looks Hindu today." No one ever understood. :-) However, in modern times even non-Hindus have begun to wear it as a fashion accessory. Before modern knowledge of biology, evolution, etc. some traditions believed there was a third eye in that area and by marking it it enhances concentration or awareness. Some people do put there hand or fingers there when thinking or at least mimicking thinking hard. Don't know if that can be related.
I heard it was for when she gets married, her husband scratches it off to see if he won a gas station or a liquor store...LOL!
Rose: Yes, traditionally it was mainly worn by married women. And Kim, yes, men always want a liquor store out of the relationship. ;-)
Most of the gas stations around here are run or owned by people of India . The women have that dot and wear it while working . So getting a gas station must come with it . Liquor stores owned by them . Not around here . They all state own ...