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Third time’s a charm

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Okay, so this is my third before-and-after of my henna-head. I think my hair has reached maximum henna saturation, because this application blended in my roots but didn’t seriously affect the overall color!

Today’s recipe:

  • 100g henna
  • 1.5c double-strength chamomile
  • 2T olive oil (…garlic flavored, yuck! I didn’t have anything else on hand)
  • 2T Herbal Essences Intensive Blends conditioner

I left it in for only about 3 or 3.5 hours this time (instead of a full 4). I also slopped it on right after mixing it (with lukewarm chamomile), without waiting for dye release. I did this because I’ve heard that hair takes henna so much more easily than skin that you could use water, mix, and apply immediately with good results.

I applied it to my roots first, using a condiment dispenser I got for 85 cents at a kitchen store down the street:


I always had problems before with getting the henna near my scalp, though obviously it didn’t harm the final outcome. If you just goop it on, it doesn’t really saturate your entire head — it just sits on the clump of hair you lathered it over. So, with this dispenser I could part my hair in segments all over my head and just squeeze a big line of henna into the part. Then I glopped the rest on over that and massaged it into my scalp. I so love the cooling effect the henna has on my scalp!

I used the olive oil and conditioner in this batch because I had problems with a larger-than-usual amount of hair falling out when I rinsed the henna out. Others have reported alleviating this symptom by adding olive oil, which is really good for your hair anyway. This batch worked just as advertised — I only washed out the normal amount of hair I shed in the shower every day.

I hadn’t added olive oil before because I heard somewhere that it kept the henna from staining as well as it should. But others reported use of a moderate amount of olive oil with no problems. I guess it’s the same with terps — a little is fine, too much ruins stain. On a side-note, I used vegetable oil around my hairline, applied with a cotton ball, to deflect the orange halo you can end up with if you don’t apply the henna very carefully. Worked like a charm!

I didn’t add any essential oils this time around, either. But come on, I already have a mixture of chamomile, garlic olive oil, and Herbel Essences on my head — adding another scent to the mix would probably have been nauseating!

And so, there you have it! Here is my hair before the most recent application (which is the shade of two mellowed-out applications of henna over the past two months):


My hair immediately after combing it out with conditioner, rinsing it really well, and blowdrying:


As you can see, there’s really not much difference in color. The red might be just a little bit redder. My roots are nicely blended in. And my hair is wonderfully soft and strong! The reason it doesn’t look so shiny in the second photo is because a) I didn’t use the flash on my camera or have direct lighting, and b) I didn’t shampoo my hair before applying henna this time around, so it’s all greasy and nasty. 🙂 Sorry.

Since I seem to have reached the conclusion of this experiment, I’ll put all my findings on one easy-to-reference page — hopefully sometime in the next few weeks. I’ll blog on any other interesting developments I might have, but otherwise, I won’t bore you with my now monthly henna-head routine!

Suffice to say, I think I’ll be hennaing my hair for a long, long time to come.


  1. megan says:

    …wooow. you could like, totally go professional. haha! like totally! didn’t mean to sound like a valley girl but the redness is bee-YU-tee-full.

  2. green_fairy says:

    I sooo love the color of your hair…I will hopefully be using henna soon…hope I get results like yours. Red is the best. 🙂