Henna Hair Dye
Henna Hair Color originates from a plant called "Lawsonia Intermis" which grows mostly in Northafrica, India or Egypt.
Their leaves will be harvested around fall, they will be dried and processed into a green powder, the Henna Powder".
For years, this green powder has been used as a benefit for a healthy alternative to color hair, or quality (and all natural) body art, like temporary tattoos.
Henna is also used as a method of natural healing, for example skin problems, or even burns. There is a henna tee for throat irritations.
Compound Henna No NO
The natural henna, or Body Art Quality Henna will usually give your hair a red, or reddish brown color. It contains no toxins or harsh chemicals.
But there is also something called a Compound Henna, with ingredients like Metallic Salts and Synthetic Dyes. These are harmful to your hair!
Please make sure to buy quality henna, look at labels or do some research on-line!
My Henna Story
I started to use Henna Hair Color about a year ago. I used to get highlights in my natural dark blond hair. Highlights are very costly to keep up with, they require a lot of treatments and trips to the salon, and to my horror, my hair started to break off terribly. I have fine hair and I did condition as good as I could, with "quality" products. Still, my hair was getting fried!
What now? My mom told me to get Henna and have a total make over. OK mom, I know you love red hair and even freckles, but red hair on me ? I was desperate, I bought a jar of "Rainbow Henna" (available at the Whole Foods Market) in Persian Medium Brown. It cost just a little under $7, so it was worth a try. At that time, I did not do any research, and things could have definitely gone even more wrong.
Henna is not to be used on chemically treated or permed hair, it could possibly turn your hair green and do even more damage! Only Body Art Quality Henna should be tried in this situation! Always, always test the color on a strand of your hair first!
I was lucky, it turned out beautiful and much fuller, even nice and shiny! Rainbow Henna is considered a compound henna, but is also 100% Botanical and NO Chemicals! The ingredients are Lawsonia Intermis and Indigofereae (which is a different plant). I am still using it now, after a year has gone by.
I guess, you have to be careful with other colors like black, or even blond Henna. A lot of times these claimed "henna colors" do not even have the ingredient "Lawsonia Inermis", but consist of other plant dyes. Henna will always have a red-tone to it.
The Henna Color will turn out according to your natural hair color. Blonds will usually turn strawberry blond, brown hair will look auburn, black hair will have a red tone in it.
Not too many people are allergic to henna ( make a skin test).
Henna Instructions, Step by Step
Get all your utensils ready:
You will need 2 old towels, vinyl gloves, Vaseline, (put it around your ears and hairline, so your skin will not get stained. If it does get stained, it will wash off after about 1-2 days. Be careful not to actually get Vaseline on the hair, the color will not stick there!) a wooden, or otherwise "non-metal" spoon, distilled or at least filtered water (amount, according to directions), plastic or glass bowl, (non-metal) shower cap.
Wear old clothing ( I usually strip down to my underwear while application. It is a messy job!)
Mix up your henna per instructions:
I usually ad an egg and 2 tsp. of olive oil for more conditioning.
The henna will turn into a green, a little strange smelling paste. Don't make it too runny, you will want it to stick. But not too thick, about the consistency of Greek yogurt.
Put one towel around your shoulders, put on your gloves and apply the mixture to clean hair, (you can wash ahead of time with a mild shampoo) section by section. This is especially important if you have some gray hair! I know, it is messy, but you will get the hang of it!
Make sure that the mixture is applied evenly, then put on shower cap. Cover it with the second towel!
I put on the blow dryer on high for about a minute or so, the heat helps the henna to develop.
A lot of people will say, that they wash off the henna after 1 hour, I leave it on for 2!
Take some time to remove your henna. I figured out that the bathtub faucet was doing a much better job in removing the henna, then my regular shower. It was much less messy also.
Try not to use any Shampoo for at least on day, the color will be more vibrant!
You can use Henna about once a month, and don't forget! Once you "Henna", you basically have to wait for the color to grow out!
Some people say, that Mineral Oil will help the removal of Henna Color. I have never tried it!
There are some other Henna Products that you can get at your health store or Whole Foods Market like Shampoo and Conditioners!
All in all I am very happy with the Henna Results, my hair is finally in great shape and healthy!
3 Year Henna Update
I am still using the Rainbow Henna, and I am very happy with it.
My super fine hair has gotten so much thicker, it is amazing!
I can not wait to Henna again after that one month has gone by.
I do mix just a little bit of light brown rainbow henna with the medium brown, it will end up as a pretty chestnut.
Henna Hair Color Tutorial
Great Stuff on Amazon
iayane on July 27, 2013:
The color you get from hannah is nice.
Loretta Livingstone from Chilterns, UK. on February 21, 2013:
I adore henna, but I HATE rinsong it out, it's like sand mixed with glue. However the colour is gorgeous and lasts so well that it is worth it. I just got my hairdresser to retouch my roots. She is going to teach herself to use henna so I sent her a link to your lens so she could learn more. I added a little beetroot juice to my last henna (I always use red henna to be sure of getting the good stuff with no nasty additives) Your hair looks amazingly beautiful by the way.
Shana rios Chavez on January 10, 2012:
i want to use this now!!great lens
howudoing on January 05, 2012:
I've been using Rainbow Henna Persian Sherry for 25 years and I've gotten perms on top of it many, many times with no problem whatsoever. Hair stylists have voiced concerns, but the only issue is if you color first then perm, the perm chemicals will strip out some of the color. It's better to color a week or so after the perm.
laurenrose lm on November 18, 2011:
Great lens, ive alo have a lens about the dangers of hair dye, and a henna alternative, maybe you would find this interesting? Take a look if your not busy.
Again great lens, well done
ErHawkns7100 on November 03, 2011:
I have never tried it but I want to.