Let’s start with the basics shall we – what is Henna?
Henna is a dye that comes from the Lawsonia Inermis plant. The Lawsonia Inermis is also known as the henna tree which I have to say, is much easier to say 🙂
The dye itself actually comes from the leaves of the plant. Whole dry and unbroken leaves will not dye or stain the skin.
Henna trees are actually native to Northern Australia, Northern Africa and Western & Southern Asia. They thrive and produce the most dye in warmer sunnier climes.
The colour of henna is naturally reddish tones and this is the only colour that the plant produces. The reddish brown tones make for a wonderful colour to dye your hair! Depending on the colour that your hair already is depends on the effect on your hair.
There are many people out there, not just us hippy’s, that love to dye their hair but don’t particularly like using chemicals and prefer au natural. This is why henna is fantastic. You of course need to love having red hair too.
If you decide you use Henna then we can tell you how but please bear in mind that 1) Henna requires patience and 2) Henna is very permanent and so you need to be sure that you want the colour before you commit as the only way to get rid of it is to cut your hair or make do and let it grow out 🙂 Perhaps a section test first.
So now the how to:
What you will need
100-500g Body Quality Henna
Medium sized mixing bowl
Old Towels (use ones that you don’t mind crapping up)
With regards to what you need, the amount of Henna that you will need to use depends on the length of your hair. I would say as a general rule use 100g for short hair, 300g for shoulder length hair, and 500g for waist length hair. You may have to adjust the quantity based on the thickness of your hair but it is all trial as the Henna never works the same for 2 different people.
Before you get started I would suggest that you lay newspaper of something similar on the ground and surfaces where you are planning on using the dye as Henna stains and is a pig to clean, which is not always possible so be warned. Also I would suggest that you run the Vaseline over your ears and around your hairline as if you get any on your skin it will take days to come off and you don’t want to look like an Oompa Loompa .
Day before dye
You will need to mix your henna and then leave for 12 hours.
For 300g, mix 8oz water with the henna powder and add a splash of lemon juice.
Cover with cling film and leave to develop at room temp for 12 hours.
Note – Henna hair dye is thicker than your conventional dye and so requires more for total coverage.
Step 1) You will need to ensure that you have clean and dry hair before you apply the dye so off you go and give your hair an nice scrub. Do not use conditioner however, just use shampoo only as otherwise the oils and chemicals in the conditioner can affect the vibrancy and how well it sticks to your hair.
Step 2) Preparation – remember to protect your ears and skin with Vaseline and to put newspaper down.
Step 3) Check your Henna – now that it has developed you need to check the consistency to see if you need to add more water. It should be the consistency of thick yoghurt. Add more water if required.
Step 4) It’s dye time! – Everyone has their own way of dying their hair however, I would suggest that you dye it section by section starting from the top. Apply the dye and then once you have the whole section covered twist that piece of hair onto the top of your head. The henna paste is thick enough so that you won’t have to pin it in place.
Keep applying the paste until the area that you are dying is covered.
Step 5) Now you need to set your hair. Keeping your ears uncovered, wrap your hair in Clingfilm ensuring that you wrap all around your hairline and the top of your head.
The wrapping of your hair keeps the henna warm and moist allowing it to set.
You will need to leave your hair wrapped for a minimum of 2 hours and a max of 6 hours. The longer that you leave it the better as it allows for maximum vibrancy.
Step 6) Now that your hair is set you need to rinse all of the henna from it. Pop your gloves back on, remove the wrap and wash. Rinse with warm water to start with and then add some conditioner rubbing it in well. The conditioner helps to loosen the henna paste. When there is no paste left and the colour runs clear, dry as you usually would.
When you first dye your hair it will be quite bright (again depending on your start colour). It will take a few days for the colour to fully develop. After around 48 hours the tines will deepen.
Henna does not fade and so you will not need to keep topping up the colour. You can of course add more colour if you want to change the look or the vibrancy or top up your roots 🙂
Henna really is fab so my hippy lovelies, enjoy the results.
Works great for those hippy gentlemen too!
Natural and looks great. What more could a hippy want?!