Friday, April 25, 2014

Henna & Amla

Okie dokie... Anyone have a light?

Seriously, HennaHut says they have fresh henna and based on the smell... Let's just say I feel like I should be rollin'  and firing it up man - woooahhhh that's a potently fresh and natural scent!! I added about 20 drops of tangerine EO and I could still smell the two distinctly Caribbean scents wafting into my nostrils!

If you haven't yet guessed, I'm a henna virgin and am attempting to apply henna by myself tonight.  HennaHut has videos and simple instructions, I'm pretty confident about going ahead on my own.

Here's the before pic. I originally had dark brown hair, added some ash blond highlights and my hair and highlights have lightened from using apple cider vinegar as a conditioning rinse to the point where my blond is WAY too blond.  That coupled with seven white hairs has led me to henna :)

Pretty obvious blonde highlights, I'm looking forward to seeing what the henna does to them!

So, here goes.  I shampooed twice using a sulphate & paraben free shampoo, then let my hair air dry for about an hour.

Update: I was told washing with low poo isn't necessary and doesn't change the outcome.  As a henna virgin, I wanted to do everything right though.  I also devoured the free eBook to the right of the pic here before starting my research.  It's really helped my application technique.  No need to repeat those instruction except a warning to use Vaseline on the skin of your hairline and ears and wear gloves!!

Applying henna is fun, much like playing in mud!  It feels heavy quickly though, but smooshy, so now that I'm sufficiently smooshed, I've got a French roll on top of my head and nothing holding it - lol. Not to worry, I've got an old black T-shirt on in case it falls out. No need for the TouchUp applicator, nor the shower cap!

Next time I think I should use 200g... I feel like although I used 50g of Amla and 100g of henna I could have used a 200g total so I didn't have to stretch it.  But smooshing pretty much took care of an even coverage.

I read that mixing Amla with henna creates a cool toned brown, because I wear cool colours in clothing and makeup, I thought I'd give it a try.

Here's my 7 hour old formerly blonde highlights - they're brown!! Already a success!  Let's see how the oxidization process continues in the next two days until the final colour settles.  Its like a present, its a surprise!!!

Note:  I slept with my sad sebum stripped unconditioned hair in a braid and when I woke up it was still wet so still smelled like herbs - more like mulch actually!  Once dried though, there was no smell.  Makes me think adding rosemary EO for hair growth, or tea tree may be OK even though I hate both scents.

Thirty hours later I'm deciding if I'm going to do a deep condition, then deciding how I'll style my hair for this week, curly or straight :). I'm tempted to go straight because I want to see all the colour though.
Update:  I finally mastered how to combat dryness with henna.

Here's my lovely cool-brown colour thanks to the Amla I added.  I obviously missed some grey at the hairline!

Despite my better judgment, I used coconut milk on the length and ends of my hair, carefully avoiding any contact with my scalp. I used coconut milk before and it was extremely moisturizing to the point it made my scalp (sweaty, hot and moist) too moisturized. I then put on a shower cap, and cleaned my bathroom.  So after however long that was, 20 minutes or so, I rinsed it out with water and did an ACV to water rinse (50%/50% equal parts) and plopped to dry curly.

Wow!  No blonde... Lookin good even though its still wet!  I gave it a coconut milk condition and ACV rinse and plopped to mostly dry, now it's air drying.  That's with sunlight from the window, true colour 36 hours in!!!

So Monday morning, I could still smell the coconut milk and although my hair was super hydrated, it was frizzy.  I caved.  I rinsed it yet again with warm water, no apple cider vinegar rinse, just water and my hair was super soft, full of light bouncy curly volume and great definition thanks to the opportunity to restyle it, no brushes used!

A thought: maybe my hair loves WO, but my scalp hates it!!!???

Update:  my hair looks shiny, feels soft and my sebum production seems to have slowed down.  Its day 9 and I just flat ironed my hair to truly see the colour. I've oiled my ends and I did headband curls for 4 hours and it didn't really take, I need to do them overnight!  Here's my finger combed hair.  I love the colour!  I'll definitely do henna again!

Update:  12 days later...

above is about 10am, below is about 7pm and I'm exhausted, haven't touched my hair in hours and ready for bed!! Notice, my hair is still full of body and shine  - unlike me - all day long!!

Nighty night :)

Update Aug 2014:  This first time I did a low poo to henna my virgin hair, the next time I washed with shikakai and henna'd the next day when my hair was dry - hated that process since I needed to rinse again the day after and my hair hates water (a personal thing I guess)

Last time I henna'd 20 day old sebum coated hair all over, not just roots like a touch-up, I like the conditioning so I do the whole head.   After rinsing day after, knew it was now a wash method for me.

Why: I find the first few days (3days) after henna, my hair feels a little dry, even straw like.  I've been caught 3 times doing a deep condition after henna and regretting it by day 5 when everything is back to normal.

For my hair, and infrequent washes as it is, it's a wash.  I have bra strap length, layered, curly, tending toward dry, high porosity hair.

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