Have you ever wanted to try Henna and had no idea where to start?
Here is a post on my first time using Henna and this is what I learnt.
Feel free to request anything for Try-It-Tuesday in the comments below.
What is Henna?
Henna is the powdered leaves of a tropical plant. It has been used for centuries as body art for rituals. Henna stains the skin and sometimes can be used as a natural hair dye. The intensity of the henna colour will vary depending various factors, such as the brand, quality of the Henna, how long you leave it to dry for… etc.
Where do you buy it? Which one should I look for?
You can buy it from your local Indian grocer. Make sure you buy cosmetic-grade henna, which usually is ‘pure’ henna. Due to lack of regulation other types of Henna, especially Henna labelled for hair is sometimes diluted with nasty mystery chemicals. Always check the ingredients, it should read Lawsonia inermis.
Before you Begin…
- Do not use metal implements to mix or contain the henna as the metal may chemically interfere with the dye.
- If you’re that messy, try to do it outside or else cover everything in newspaper.
- Clean Spills up immediately or it will stain.
- If you’re unsure, always do an allergy test. Test a small amount of henna behind your ear on the hair line. Wait 24 hours for a reaction.
- You can roughly test the colour result by doing a ‘Strand’ test. To do this, take some hair from your hair brush and add it to the Henna. Longer you leave it in, the more intense the colour will be.
- Do not use Henna if you have already chemically coloured hair, it may react badly. Please consult a hairdresser first or wait for your chemical colour to grow out.
- If in doubt, do more research!! Google is your friend.
So you want to Henna your hair ….
Henna- Lawsonia inermis
Lemon Juice- This ‘activates’ the Henna.I used half a lemon. I’ve seen it mixed with Apple Cider Vinegar as well.
Water or Black Tea. I used Black tea to tone down the ‘red’
Non-metal utensil & Bowl
Cling Wrap/Plastic bag
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Prepare the Henna
- You will have to prepare the Henna 6-8 hour before hand this allows for the colour to develop. Preparing the night before is ideal.
- The measurements of the Henna & Water/Tea will vary due to how long your hair is so just eyeball it.
- Add Hot Tea/ Water, Lemon Juice (I used half a lemon) and to the Henna powder and mix with a non metal utensil.
- It’s better to start with smallish amount and mixing in more. If it is too watery, add more powder, if it is too thick, add more water/tea. You’re going to want to do this until the consistency of yogurt/paste/mud.
- Set aside overnight for the colour to develop.
- Make MORE than you will need. (I’m just speaking from experience…)
Now, let’s get Jiggy with it…
1. Use a Cotton ball soaked in olive oil to coat around the hairline and ears. This is so you don’t end up staining your hairline/forehead/face.
2. Use gloves to apply the Henna to your hair. Apply in small sections. You can just ‘glob’ it on but make sure you coat every strand. Once the section is completely coated, twirl the section into a ‘mini bun’ on top of your head and gradually add to it as you go.
3. Wrap in cling wrap your hair and wait for it to set 3-6 hours. The longer you leave it in the more intense the colour will be. The idea is that you want to keep heat and moisture in the hair as the Henna dries.
4. You can blow dry your hair every now and again to speed up the process a little.
5. Once time is up, rinse out your hair with warm water, until the water runs clearish. Shampoo and condition was usual.
Before and After: Here are the results. No significant difference in colour (however, a few days later I did notice subtle colour change in certain lights). I did notice my hair looks slightly less dry in the picture in the far right. Please excuse the flannel ……… or embrace it (like a
(Sidenote: I just added the middle picture so that you guys don’t think I’m Samara from ‘The Ring’ and get freaked out….lols jkz …………………..7 days…. )
It’s a great Hair Mask, my hair feels stronger and smoother. I did notice a subtle colour under different lights ( looks like a million bucks in sunlight. I only noticed a week after I tried this….I don’t get out much). Next time, I might try it with water instead of black tea next time to see if I can get a richer colour. I have to warn you, it is time consuming and a messy, but I think the end result worth it. Think of it as a natural spa treatment. And it really does make your hair healthy and strong. I do plan on doing this treatment more often.
It’s natural, no chemicals
It strengthens hair
The colour looks natural
It fades out, no need to fret about regrowth
You can’t exactly control the colour
Strains random things
Smells like confused dirt..(you know when dirt has an identity crisis.)
I hope this was helpful to you and please leave a comment on your experiences with Henna below…
Let me know if you have any requests for Try-It-Tuesday!
Enjoy your day! And don’t get into any fights that you cannot win :D