Saturday, November 13, 2010

Henna hair versus Chemical Dye

Alrighty, I have done both and can now give you the proper lowdown.

I have the attention span of a gnat and so does my hair. I get bored with it easily and luckily my tresses can take plenty of punishment.

I go from this

To this

To somehow finding the patience to grow it all out again.

So after this do was looking a bit tired I thought I might try Henna instead of chemicals. Henna is a natural plant derived dye used for centuries and comes in varying colours. I bought some Brown Henna from the health food shop and after crusing Henna Forums, decided to make my own concoction based on that information.

I mixed the henna with black tea, paprika and some lavender water I made up myself (steep lavender in hot water) for conditioning purposes. I heard it was very very messy and was also warned about the smell. I mixed it up to a fairly thick paste but had to thin it out to get it through my hair - which is quite long now.

I didn't find it any messier than a home dye but it was certainly harder to apply on your own. It has a very grainy texture and it felt a little heavy on my head. I just slapped it on and wandered around the house smelling like HORSE POO for a few hours. I recommend doing this in the backyard with a friend.

It took many, many rinses to get it all out in the shower, lots of conditioner and grumbling on my behalf. The next morning I couldn't be sure if it made much difference but WHOA did my hair feel great! Thick, healthy and heavy. I've never had such glossy hair in my life.

This pic was taken about 5 weeks after. The colour seemed to darken over a couple of days so I was very pleased with the result. The colour fades gradually - you don't end up with obvious roots, just an all over softening of the colour. My hair felt great the entire time.

Last night I used a home chemical dye. I couldn't get to the health shop and the box was on sale at the supermarket so I grabbed it. At the very least I thought to myself it will be a quicker process and easier to wash out. And it was on sale.

Yes it was a bit easier but I was very put off by the wastage of a single use foam pump! I didn't take much notice of anything other than the colour and price of the box. I certainly wouldn't have bought it otherwise.

So I like the colour and my hair feels nice

But I'm never using the chemicals again. I forgot how much it damages my scalp and leaves it sore. Whilst it does feel silky it also feels fragile and thin, not full and lustrous like it did with the henna. The packaging and waste is totally ridiculous with home hair dyes so it does more than damage to my skin and hair.

Henna all the way from now. I urge you all to give it a go! Yes it's messy and smells but it's worth it!



Vicki said...

Babe just be very careful after using Henna - DO NOT BLEACH YOUR HAIR AT ALL!!

If you bleach ur hair after a henna dye it will turn ur hair into this jelly substance and it will break and fall out!

(been there done that!)

You have to let the henna grow out before u can bleach again!

Yeah I totally agree with the smell factor... I thought it was more a cow dung smell mixed with some naughty green smoking grass!

katiegirl said...

I actually like the grass-y smell of henna... (But I'm not normal...).

I'm glad to hear you wont go back to chemicals. They are incredibly toxic, and despite what many people think, the chemicals DO absorb through the skin and into the bloodstream.

Not to mention wreck your hair. I'm still regretting the time I got my hair bleached over two years ago!! I'm still trying to grow it out.

angelaartsstudent from BB said...

I have been henna-ing for about 3 years and LOVE it. But ja, it's bloody permanent and almost impossible to get you're stuck with it if you don't like it (unless you dye black over the top).

I love the smell too!

Annie Monie said...

Another factor to consider is your desired outcome. Henna, even though it is obviously is a powerful sticking dye, is not capable of actually lightening your hair. Also, if you have lighter colored hair, the highlights in certain shades may be more intense. Sometimes it takes a few tries of different types of henna and herbal additives to achieve the exact shades you're looking for.

hair dye for black hair

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