Friday, June 28, 2013

Truly Natural Henna Hair-dye versus the Conventional Toxic Chemical Crap

The Terressentials Team is often asked “Can I use the Pure Earth Hair Wash on my chemically-dyed hair?” or “If I start using the Hair Wash, can I keep using chemical relaxers and dyes on my hair?”

When people ask us these questions, we stress three things: (1) Yes, you can use our Hair Wash, it will not damage your hair or remove the color, (2) Your hair, since it has been damaged by the chemicals, may appear damaged after completing detox, and – especially – (3) Try henna! (If you haven't done so already, make sure you check out Step 1 of our extensive online Hair Wash Instructions and our the “hair dye” tag on our wonderful Hair Help Resource Guide to read more in-depth answers about our Hair Wash and our approved hair conditioning recommendations. We also have posts about how our Hair Wash interacts with chemical dyes and other hair treatments.)

When we broach the subject of henna with many Hair Wash users, they jump to a common conclusion: henna hair dye will turn your hair red. WRONG! Terressentials carries the Light Mountain Henna in both the Natural and the Color the Grey lines. Not only is Light Mountain USDA certified organic (yay for no nasty chemicals or processing!), but they also have perfected mixing different strains of henna (henna comes in different strains similar to how there are lots of different types of apples) along with other herbs (such as indigo and cassia) to achieve an array of lovely colors. They even have a “Neutral” in both the Natural and Color the Grey lines which just conditions your hair! To see a color chart of the Light Mountain Henna Natural line, click here, and to see a color chart of the Light Mountain Color the Grey line, click this link. You should note that the color on the outside of the box is not the color that your hair will be after dyeing it with the henna.

You can even take mixing the henna a step further. I've used the henna three times now (Bright Red is my color of choice, but, again, that's just me, not the limitation of the henna) and this time I mixed in three tablespoons of apple cider vinegar with the henna in order to achieve a more coppery color. Light Mountain includes on their instructions sheet a little section about other ways of enhancing or manipulating the color of the henna by adding different cooking liquids and spices to the henna. (Page 2 of this PDF file from Light Mountain has a section labeled “Special Effects” which lists some of these manipulations.) Also, we have known people to mix two different colors of the henna to achieve their very own custom color with great results! Though Light Mountain advertises their henna as lasting “four to six weeks,” if a friend or a family member hasn't seen me since I last dyed my hair with the henna, it can be eight or ten weeks later and they remark on the color of my hair and how much they like it (granted, these results are not promised, it's just what I've noticed in my personal life).

Now, you may have to leave the henna on longer than you would a chemical dye. In my experience, the longer that the henna is on your hair (making sure it is still moist!) the more the dye will set into your hair. Make sure you are extremely careful as you prepare the henna mixture that no metal is involved in boiling the water and in mixing the henna powder and the water (in the past I have simply warmed up the water in glass bowls and mugs in the microwave when I couldn't find a non-metal pot or kettle). As the instructions say, you want to do a strand test first to see how long you should leave the henna on your hair to get your ideal color. When I am dyeing my hair, I normally just hang out at my home, doing chores, goofing off on my laptop, or reading a book. FYI, the henna mixture will smell like herbs because it is made of herbs. The henna smells a lot better to me than chemical hair dyes and my eyes don't sting at all when I am around the henna.

Applying the henna to your hair can be a bit more tricky than when you use chemical dyes because the henna is more like a thin paste than a pure liquid. The first time you want to mix and apply the henna, it may be easier to have someone else help you. A henna experimentation project can be a great opportunity to try something new with a friend or a family member! Just think of how much fun you could have watching a movie with a friend while waiting for your henna to set. When it comes to washing out the henna from your hair, it does take a little longer than when you wash out a chemical dye due to the fact that the henna has a different consistency than the chemical dyes – so be patient! Also, here's a tip: it is much easier to rinse the henna out in a shower as opposed to trying to rinse it out in a sink or bathtub.

Another great part with the henna is that it ISN'T permanent. There are no awkward root lines from when your hair was last dyed. Also, if you want to change hair color, you don't have to wait months for your last color to grow out, or hope for the best as you put one dye on top of another.

If you want to order henna from us, please make a note in the comments box of the shopping cart on our website to “Please include (x amount) of boxes of the Light Mountain Natural (or Color the Grey) in this color.” Then your henna will be shipped with your package of your Terressentials products! NOTE: Ordering henna may cause a slight delay with processing and shipping your order. Also, the henna will neither be listed in the products section of your order confirmation email, nor will the henna's price be included in your dollar total in your order confirmation email. When your order is being processed, we will make a new receipt that includes the henna and will bill you accordingly. Your cost of shipping and handling may also change if the price of the henna bumps your final total product cost into the next shipping and handling category. To see the list of shipping and handling fees on contiguous US orders, see this link from our website.

We also have the henna at our Middletown location, so feel free to stop by during typical business hours. Come see the full array yourself to make your selection and purchase your henna. If you want to pick up henna at our Frederick store, please call us ahead of time (a day or two in advance) so we can bring the henna downtown and place it on hold for you. Again, to see a color chart of the Light Mountain Henna Natural line, click here, and to see a color chart of the Light Mountain Color the Grey line, click this link. You should note that the color on the outside of the box is not the color that your hair will be after dyeing it with the henna.

If you have any questions about how the henna mixes with chemical dyes or any other specifically henna related questions please contact Light Mountain. They are the henna experts.

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