Henna for the Win! 2013 Edition

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Hey y'all,

Just wanted to fill you in with a quick post on my recent henna application. Can you believe I hadn't put in any henna on my hair for over 8 months! With no other reason than pure and unadulterated laziness.  

My hair sans henna. (Well, semi sans, you can still see the end bits with trace henna)

After application. Close up.... Have I ever told you how much I detest the feel of henna against my skin? Truly and insanely so.

Henna does NOTHING to my curl pattern... Zilch! Nada! Absolutely nothing! I got that strong curl *Awww yeah* 

Annnnd... After henna!

So, why the sudden rebirth of zeal for henna you might ask? Well, I want to come up with a new regimen and as I do that, I will go back to the drawing board with products and routines as well as new stuff that I come across. Henna is the first product up.

If you are interested in my mix it was super simple:
  1. Boil three tea bags in water until the tea is black and super strong - about a litre if you want to get specific. I like teabags because they are easier to work with moreover tea leaves.
  2. Mix the strong brew with henna in a bowl, adding the tea and henna in small portions to prevent lumps. (I use a whole packet of Nurpur Mehendi Henna) Whip it to a fine lump-free thick paste (not runny). 
  3. Add Extra Virgin Olive Oil - about three tablespoons worth.
  4. And if you want that added colour (I did this time around) add about a teaspoonful of citric acid! I tell you this works like a charm in releasing the henna dye!
  5. Let the mixture sit for as long as you like, the more time the better. I made my mix the night before my morning application.
I have the henna paste on my hair for about a whole day. Thereafter I rinse it out and do a simple moisture rich conditioner DC. This DC can sit on my head for up to an hour.

Et voila! 

Are any of you on the Henna Train or thinking about hopping on board? If so let me know. Also feel free to ask me any questions should you have any.

Speak in a bit. x
gathoni said...

A whole day?! Ugh! I can't stand it for more than a few hours. Henna is great since it won't damage my hair like most chemical dyes, but with my locks, it's a pain. The bits and pieces get stuck in my hair and won't wash out even after repeated rinses. I shed grass-looking flakes for many days afterwards. Not so nice.

tess said...

Oh my Heavens!!is that your hair??Gorgeous!!!I want to henna my hair so bad...but i keep on hearing it will dry my hair....few questions:which moisture based treatment did you use?and then what of the previous burgundry colour you had??jamani! i need to be more out there with my mane-to-be......Thanks:))

Nimo said...

Hey Mary, first of all your hair looks amazing! your curls are so pretty :)... Second, never really been much of a henna fan; the amount of time and work the whole process takes(washing it off is usually a nightmare) and the fact that the color of the end result isn't intense... but that's just me... are there any benefits of including henna in your regimen apart from color?

Shannon said...

I used Henna bi-monthly. Now, I'm over it. I haven't applied it in over a year and I'm loving my hair just the same. When I realized how much energy natural hair takes in and of itself, I tried to eliminate as many things from my regimine as possible. Henna was one of those things that got tossed. Although I'll admit, if I had more patience still be doing it!

Anonymous said...

Hi Mary, first of all i love this blog! Good job ladies :) Your before and after hair looks so Beautiful! I also henna though i haven't done it in about 6 months. Planning to do it in a month. Wow, a whole day? I keep mine for 3hrs and the process is pretty smooth for me, save for the rinsing out part (hair feels like straw). My hair is relaxed and i henna to strengthen it.

Mary said...

Hi Gathoni! The grains are the absolute worst... I can't imagine what it must be like on locs! I wish some scientist would find a way to safely and naturally isolate the dye... oh well. What do you do for colour? Or is that on hold for now?

Mary said...

Yes Ma'am! Grew it myself lol! JK. Thanks tess! I will recap on the burgundy temp colour tonight so you can see my feedback and the product I used. Sorry for the delay, I totally moved on! lol!

After my henna I just used regular old Alberto's conditioner! It worked pretty well too. Now I have my own theories on hardening of the hair after henna; let me start by saying that most naturals site that its because of the protein build up on your strands... This may very well be the case... NOW I THINK, (as the journalism major that I am lol) that the hardness is as a result of remnants of henna particles on your hair. In the course of the week, you will notice your hair getting softer and the dye showing up a little better.. I think its the particles washing off! So don't fret it, it will pass... But stay away from protein based conditioners/ treatments just in case!

Hope this helps :)

Mary said...

Hola Nimo, I feel you... I had my henna days when I absolutely loved it, but I am so lazy I began to cut it out of my regimen. I do like henna though for the following reasons;

- It fortifies my hair, (protein treatment) making it somewhat more resilient and stronger
- It adds this amazing shine to it (after week one that is)
- I like the subtle colour. Especially on a sunny day!

Now other naturals claim the following;
- It loosens the curl pattern. Apparently henna is meant to add weight to your strands (g back to my particle theory) and in doing so causes the curl to loosen and elongate. Rubbish if you ask me
- Henna adds volume and body to the hair. Henna dye sits on the strand making it thicker (again refer to my theory on the particles) Rubbish again if you ask me.

In the end, henna is one of those things you can happily do without if you so wish... But then again this is just me...

Thanks for popping by!

Mary said...

Hey hairjunkie, thank you for the shout out! :D

Girl I'm with you! Henna is something I can happily do without! What henna do you use for relaxed hair? Do share!

Mary said...

You just read the pages of my soul! haha!

But I will try and give it one more go Q1 2013, I'll see how it goes!

Sue said...

I have yet to try Henna because of the time consuming process. But now I'm thinking of doing a "Henna Gloss" where you mix it with conditioner, there are lots of recipes for this online. For the graininess, I wonder if crushing them a little before you make your mix would work? I hope one doesn't have to stand under the shower forever....

The citric acid idea is really great. I've also seen a mention of coconut milk instead of conditioner. Tried a clay mask once and used coconut milk and it worked beautifully! Checked the "Natural Haven" blog which has great info on Henna. Fact check:
The dye in Henna,"Lawsone" is NOT a protein. However it is attracted to the keratin in hair, which is a protein. The loosening of curls people talk of may be for those with looser curls, not very tight ones. And the thickening some people report might be because of the dye depositing on the hair surface. Actually this is the reason I want to try Henna because of the so-called conditioning properties. There doesn't seem to be a good explanation for the dryness though, I guess the antidote is just a good conditioning treatment afterwards.

Vanessa said...

Love it! The only thing I don't like about henna and clay treatments is the rinsing it out/clean up. I hope I can find a way that will make it easier for me because I really want to be a dedicated henna user, lol. Love your blog. :-)

Anonymous said...

You're welcome :)I use 'Resham herbal hair henna'. Its a mixture of Henna, Brahmi, Amla, Shikakai, Katha, Coffee and Bhringraj...all natural. A year ago my hair was natural and i used to use that same henna.

I buy it at 'super cosmetics'. I could use 'Nupur' but this is a cheaper alternative for me. 200g for KSh.225 and i only use half for APL hair.

I actually do a henna gloss...I make a paste with just water, let it sit for 3hrs, then i add some conditioner and coconut oil and apply it to my hair. After rinsing it out i deep condition overnight. ~ Joyce

Deepak said...

Just i read it and i am feeling no where

SugarPuss said...

Everytime i want to henna, i think of the whole process, then the pool of mud to clean from the bathroom, stained fingers n all...hey it's a new year, al try it soon for the shine....gorgeous hair as usual :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Mary... I totally love kurly kichana... Just a quick question, do you know of any store in Kenya selling flexi rods or curl formers?? Using them produces amazing results. Thanx a lot!

gathoni said...

No colour for me, although I get the occasional urge to dye. I once dyed my hair and in two years all the coloured bits broke off. My locks would be much longer now as I've had them for 9 years. :(

joepauls said...

thanks for sharing this wonderful post

ludhiana said...

nice post

Diana Murage said...

Hi Anonymous.Did you get the flexi rods or curlformers?strange tat you asked this question on this day and me being a Jan 22 born would give you the solution.try Super Cosmetics karibu Imax or 20th Century.just bought them a few days ago @350 a pack of 10 or six depending on the length.good luck

Anonymous said...

i also appreciate the question on curlformers thanks yall

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