Okay I have to admit, even after deciding to go cruelty-free and vegetarian, I didn’t give much thought to the sorts of products I was using to dye my hair. I still continued to dye my hair either at the salon or by buying a box of dye from the supermarket, when my funds were low. If you have read my post on the evolution of my hair you will know I have had many different hair colours and never once did I use a natural or cruelty-free hair dye.
It wasn’t until a few months ago that I actually considered using henna to dye my hair. As you know I visit my local Lush store almost weekly. Normally I stick to bath products but over the last couple of I have branched out and tried out new products like the American Cream conditioner, the Trichomania Solid shampoo and the Breath of Fresh Air Toner. As I had spent a bit of time in the hair care section deciding which shampoo and conditioner to purchase I happened to notice the range of henna hair dyes Lush has to offer. Most of the henna dyes have a reddy base so I was a bit apprehensive in using it to dye my hair as I have never gone redder than a chocolate-brown. Another thing that made me really cautious when deciding whether to buy it or not was the fact that henna leaves a kind of permanent stain on your hair and cannot be dyed over easily. I don’t know what finally printed me to buy it, maybe it was the phone call to say that it was back in stock. It’s a really popular product and sells out almost as fast as it comes into store. I bought one block of the Caca Marron Henna dye for $31.90 when it came into stock and kept it in my Lush shelf until a rainy day when I worked up the guts to just use it.
A few weeks ago I finally decided to go for it and use the Caca Marron hair dye. I gave the henna some time to completely develop so I could show you the true colour on my new hair. These photos are taken approximately 48 hours apart. I actually am loving the colour vibrancy and how shiny my hair looks. I just have to make sure I do my eyebrows every day or I’ll look sick!
Now I know one of the main things you really want to hear about is the process. I have to say up front that this is one messy process and is best accomplished in the bathroom with newspaper everywhere. And I mean everywhere. Seriously you need to cover your whole floor which at least a double layer of newspaper. (I guess it didn’t help me that my bathroom doesn’t have a tiled floor but a carpeted one.) it also helps to have a mirror handy so you can see what you are doing, a hot water kettle, a Pyrex jug, an old wooden spoon, some thick gloves (and a spare pair for back up), a ton of shampoo and conditioner, some clips,some cream like Vaseline or Ultrabalm to put around your hairline and some cling wrap to cover your hair. Below you can see the instructions Lush provide when you buy your henna block. I personally used 4 pieces for my hair length but almost could have gotten away with using 3.
I kept the jug of hot water handy with me in the bathroom to keep the henna hot and at an easy consistency to work with. It took me a good 30 minutes to apply the henna and unkept it on for the full 4 hours keeping the cling wrap on for 2 hours to keep some of the redness coming through, and then left it unwrapped for the last 2 hours to bring out the browns. This is the point where I mention the smell.. If you know any Spanish you may have realised by now that Caca Marron translate to brown poo… And unfortunately you will have put up with quite a similarly unpleasant smell. Washing out the henna was also s bit of a mission. I went through half a bottle each of cheap shampoo and conditioner just trying to wash it out, plus at least 15 minutes in the shower! In the end my hair did end up super soft and shiny.
BUT in the end it is all worth it! I really love the new colour! It has faded a quite a bit since I dyed it and I think I am probably due to dye it again. This time I might even try to dye it twice as the Lush instructions say this will help the colour last longer and make it more vibrant.
So what do you think? Have you ever used henna before on your hair? How did your experience go?