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Topic: Full Tutorial To Dying Your Hair With Henna  (Read 32819 times)
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« Reply #80 on: June 11, 2006 05:43:24 PM »

As a dye junkie I feel compelled to respond:
L'Oreal Preference or Excellence are good, as is Clairol Hydrience. They both have a range of reds. Never really liked Feria that much since it's staying power leaves a little to be desired. Feria's 'Chocolate Cherry' is an all out wicked color though.
If you don't happen to want lead and carcinogenic crap on your head on a regular basis, Henna and indigo are a fabulous alternative to chemical dyes. (If you want to go darker - with henna you get variations of red, and with indigo+henna, variations of black) As a recent convert, I cannot be happier with the condition and color of my hair (Very soft, and a deep red-brown that absolutely gleams fire-red in the sunlight)

Careful though about 'natural' hair dyes and products claiming to be henna - they may contain other allergenic or harmful stuff that isn't listed. There may even be no henna at all. A lot of reported allergic reactions to henna are due to the other additives and not the henna itself. Allergy testing is the same as for normal hair dye - it's good to do just to make sure, since some people probably are allergic to the actual henna plant..
Check out:
for various mixes and preparation methods. And definitely check out the PPD link at the top of the page. I found this site to be very informative.

My hair was recently natural mousy light brown/dark blonde with faded clairol-dyed black tips. The first time I used henna I was amazed at how it blended the two colors into a harmonized deep red. I use MDH Body Art henna, because it's locally available and I don't have to import, which is ok (for Canadians, they have it at RC Superstore usually, for $2 or less) - I'd recommend getting some from the website above if you really want super quality with absolutely no filler. It's more expensive, but very good. Either way, you want body art grade, not the lesser quality leftovers they package up and sell for use on hair. I love Lush products, but I can't say anything good about their hair color and I've used it a few times. It was always disappointing. With henna, you MUST have dye release before application. (Depending on your prep method, this can take 1-2 hours or overnight.) Otherwise, the color will be much less than optimal.

I find that I use henna just as much as a hair and scalp treatment as for color. The color builds a bit with every use, which may be a good thing... or not. If not, just do the roots as with normal hair dye. The only thing that I find annoying is that the prep and dyeing process is a bit time consuming. It's not like "I feel like dyeing my hair, so I'll go to the drugstore and do it within a 1/2 hour." It's more like "Mix the henna and other stuff, let it sit at room temp for like 8 hours until dye release, slop it on my head, put on a showercap and wait for 2-3 hours while smelling like hay and looking like I'm covered in some kind of guano." Other than that it's all good.

You SHOULD be able to apply henna over chemical dye IF it's good quality henna with no other bad stuff in it. I'd suggest a strand test. Once your hair is henna'ed, you MAY be able to go darker over the henna with synthetic dye, depending on the product and results of a strand test. But bleaching henna out is SCARY. Scarier in fact than bleaching out bright red Punky dye stripes and newly dyed Feria Black Leather to go platinum, which I once did successfully by myself. But when I tried to remove henna, my hair wound up looking like a clown wig - frizzy and dry, and the most awful shade of orange. My only recourse was to cut it all off and start anew. I later learned that bleaching henna actually pushes the color molecule further into the hair shaft. Oops.

Anyway, maybe this will be helpful to aspiring redheads and brunettes. Smiley
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« Reply #81 on: June 11, 2006 06:48:50 PM »

Wow violet, flashing...talk about a wealth of information  Smiley 

That link is great, as is the personal experience.  My biggest hurdle towards using henna is tracking down some that's good quality.  I live in a town with rather, shall I say, crappy shopping, and I lack a credit card which a lot of places on-line require.

I will get my red hair.  At some point...

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« Reply #82 on: June 11, 2006 06:56:06 PM »

Henna is horribly BAD for your hair. Just ask any hairstylist. I'm not making this up. Also, you will never be able to dye over it, you have to wait for it to grow out. Just something to think about before taking the leap.

Many hairstylists do not recommend henna for a variety of reasons:
1 - Lack of knowledge: They may not know nearly as much about the dyeing process with henna as they do about synthetic color, and thus will not endorse its use.

2 - henna is largely unregulated: this means that what you buy as pure henna may contain other additives which are VERY harmful to some people. You've probably heard of really nasty reactions that land people in the hospital. This can also happen with commercial dyes though. One must be sure that they are buying pure body grade henna, with no other filler or additives. There are relatively easy ways to test for purity.

3 - Henna is time consuming to prepare and to apply: no quick 20-45 minute dye job here. It is messier than synthetic dye and takes longer since it has to coat the hair shaft and bond with it. This would translate into higher labor costs, etc, which people might not want to pay, making offering the service not all that appealing to a colorist. A lot of people wouldn't want to learn a whole new method of coloring if not enough clients are going to want that service.

4 - Smaller range of color: with henna, you get red and shades thereof. With Indigo, you get black, blue-black, red-black, you get the idea. You can't go lighter with henna. Also, the colorist has much more control over outcome with synthetics, since this is what he/she has been trained in.

Here is a very interesting site about henna, indigo and other natural color methods - it dispels some myths about henna that are commonly believed, and there's a very enlightening page about PPD's and chemical dyes passed off as "natural". It tells you how to make sure what you're getting is not adulterated with toxic stuff. And there is mention about a very rare genetic disorder of the blood which can be triggered or exacerbated with the use of henna. It's an extremely rare disorder, but it's always reassuring to know if, for example, your mom used henna at some point with no issues, since it's a trait that both your parents have to have for you to be affected.


Henna in its pure form is actually good for the hair though, and has a cumulative strengthening and thickening effect. I've been using it for about 4 months. It's not for the fickle - people who plan on going blonde soon after or those who are unable to stick to a range of reds or blacks will have trouble getting it out. Bleaching actually causes henna to further adhere to the hair shaft. Not pretty. Think "frizzy orange clown head." I know from past experience.
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« Reply #83 on: June 11, 2006 07:09:46 PM »

My biggest hurdle towards using henna is tracking down some that's good quality.  I live in a town with rather, shall I say, crappy shopping, and I lack a credit card which a lot of places on-line require.

I have the same problem. That's why I use the stuff I do. It's WAY cheaper than the stuff thru the website, but I need to put it through a fine sieve because there's sand in it to fatten somebody's batch size. But for $1.49, and no chemicals, I am not about to complain.
Try indian markets and the like if you live near anywhere with a "little india" or something. I used to live in Vancouver, BC so maybe that's something I take for granted. Try the yellow pages for beauty spas and such to see if there are any mehndi artists that would sell you some product.
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« Reply #84 on: June 11, 2006 07:16:36 PM »

Hmm, around here the closest we get to Indian goods is faux half-saris for around 30 dollars.  I saw some henna at an occult-type shop a few years back, so I'll have to scope them out again.

Or maybe I'll go "harass" the bellydancers at one of our local restaurants  Wink

« Reply #85 on: June 12, 2006 10:44:34 AM »

i agree with sarchan about henna. its sooo nice. mine turned out like this http://i6.photobucket.com/albums/y228/onmytoez4life/P1010157.jpg
i henna it all the time and its so nice and soft. <3 for henna.
aw--your hair is beautiful!

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« Reply #86 on: June 12, 2006 12:50:14 PM »

 Grin Grin thank you!!
« Reply #87 on: June 13, 2006 11:59:18 AM »

I have to add that I have dyed my hair with henna after bleaching highlights into it first and it turned out really nice. Oh and anliastriona, check any health food places you may have nearby, they might sell henna there.
« Reply #88 on: June 16, 2006 06:09:27 AM »

Some one asked a while ago about not shampooing.  I'm a shampoo-free girl, and let me tell you, it changed my life!  That is not for everyone, though.  People with really curly or kinky hair or dreadlocks may benefit from going shampoo free.  The detergents in shampoo were drying out my super-curly extra-fine hair.   So now I just "clean" with very rich conditioner and good ole friction!  And yes, I go to smokey bars and sweat, and no, my hair doesn't smell (well, right after I leave the bar it does;-) 
Every two months or so I use a sugar scrub on my scalp, and when I get an itchy spot I use some tea-tree oil, but it's all conditioner all the time, and my hair has never been so soft, healthy, shiny or frizz-free!!!  With out frizz-free products.

I started using henna for the same reason: the chemicals from regular dyes were drying out my hair and making it frizzy (think Ronald McDonald on a really bad day!).  But henna makes it soft, shiny, and the perfect glowing red for me.  (hmm, I think I'm beginning to sound like an infomercial).
I've been using henna powder from the Middle Eastern grocery, but last time I used Lush's Cacas... I'm in love.  It takes a little more time to prepare, and is a bit harder to wash out of the tub, but it's totaly worth it!  It smells so good, and is extra conditioning for my hair.  I can't reccomend it enough!!!
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« Reply #89 on: June 16, 2006 06:46:33 AM »

Yay!  Thank you, cordeliasbs!  I had asked because shampoo dries out my hair really badly... I have to deep condition for at least ten minutes every day that I shampoo - it drives me nuts.  I have gone a few days just conditioning before - maybe I'll try it for longer.  Thanks so much for responding!

I'm thinking that I need to get rid of the black hair - I've been thinking for several months now that I just don't like it like I used to.  I think a lot of it is that I'm getting older (gasp!!!  lol )and it just doesn't look as good with older pale skin as it did with younger, clear skin.  I break out more now, at 28, than I did when I was a teenager.  Sigh...  but I think I'm going to go back to red.  I probably won't use the henna because I like changing my color too much, and my natural color is dark brown - I like my hair a lot lighter than that. 

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