Published: 12/04/2014 - Updated: 12/31/2017
Author: MSc. Miriam Reyes
Dying your hair is very common today, both in women and men. It’s stylish and showing off new hair cuts and colors every now and then has become the hot thing to do, which makes us think about just how much hair chemicals weaken, abuse, and the majority of times, not even the most expensive treatments can recover the hair’s natural beauty.
I know you won’t let me get away with lying, but the truth is, older people who have dyed their hair for several years have hair that doesn’t look beautiful, but rather it looks hopeless and difficult to brush or take care of.
Fortunately, there are natural options for dying mistreated dyed hair, and although the process isn’t as easy as applying a box of dye, you will be pleased by the color your hair turns out.
What is henna?
It is a plant that grows in countries like Asia or Africa and its leaves generally dry out and shrivel up until forming this magical powder that is used to color hair and even to make tattoos. It isn’t permanent and does not require needles nor painful methods.
Today, you can find henna in the stores to shade your hair different colors, be it black, blond, copper, but it also exists in its natural state, and you could add certain elements to dye your hair however you like.
How is henna used?
Whether you’ve chosen a certain color in particular, or natural, you should mix the powder with warm water until making a paste similar to mud, and then divide your hair into four sections and apply. I’ll warn you that our hair will not smell or look to good with this mixture on it, but the result is worth it. Once you’ve finished applying the mixture, even in the roots and the tips, you should cover your head with a shower cap or a plastic bag in order to keep it moist and warm, and so the henna works well. In the package it should say that you should let it set for half an hour, but you could leave it up to two or three hours, according to how intensely colored you would like your hair. There are even people that leave the mixture on their head all night, but I don’t do that. so if you decide to do so, do this at your own risk and let me know how it goes for you.
After this time you must rinse your hair with warm water and wash it habitually. I do believe this to be the longest and most difficult of all because it is a bit difficult to get rid of all the coloring mud from your hair, especially the smell, which will take a few days to wear off.
After finishing the wash your hair will have taken on a new color.
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The benefits of henna
- It is natural and therefore, it doesn’t matter how many times you want to dye your hair, it will never be exposed to unnecessary chemicals.
- The colors look more natural.
- When your hair grows the root isn’t as noticeable as with other dyes because the color disappears naturally.
- In order to achieve more intense colors, you could dye your hair several times until your hair is the color you want it. Even if you do it several times in one month, you will not be abusing your hair.
Disadvantages to henna
- I have proven that henna can last for several years when unused, but the fresher it is the better it will color your hair.
- If you want to achieve a red color, use concentrated hot Jamaica to make your henna mixture.
- For a black tone, you should boil walnut leaves to make the mixture with.
- If you want to lighten it more, add a bit of oxygenated water.
- Henna does not abuse hair, but if you have very dry hair or if you use it frequently, it could dry your ends out, which is why I recommend you use some sort of cream for the dry ends, or mayonnaise, 20 minutes before showering, for a few days.
Henna is not a very fashionable or common method, but I have used it for years and I truly prefer to dye my hair in this way. Being a slave to boxed dyes or beauty salons means you need to touch them up frequently and the colors don’t last very long, especially reds, which wash out quickly. In my experience, henna is a good and natural option, even for people who suffer from cancer and cannot be exposed to a lot of chemicals, or for pregnant women.
Try dying your hair this way and tell me how it goes.
Revised by: Dra. Loredana Lunadei on 12/31/2017
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