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View Full Version : Neutral Henna - bleh?


Lois
December 28th, 2005, 02:37 PM
I tried some neutral Henna and didn't get very good results. I wet my hair after shampooing, did the boiling water with no metal thing with the henna, and applied it to my hair. I didn't leave it on as long as the box said to, but it left my hair dry, gritty (from all the henna particles) and my bathtub green and gritty. My hair has a bit more shine, but no body and feels rather icky.

Has anyone else had this? Does henna not go along well with curly hair?

MariaAZ
December 28th, 2005, 02:55 PM
From what I've read, some people get along well with henna and/or neutral henna, and others don't. I've not used neutral henna, but have similar experiences with regular henna. It takes an awful lot of rinsing to get it out of one's hair. In fact, I've not yet been able to get it all out in one rinsing; it usually takes a couple shampooings to get it all out. However, I have found that by soaking my hair in a tub after hosing the bulk of it off (I just can't stand the thought of sitting in a tub of orange water) and following with a good CO washing I'm able to get most of the henna out of my hair. I don't know about neutral henna though.

Rini
December 28th, 2005, 03:11 PM
By "neutral henna"...you mean Cassia Obovata right? I think as with henna, that the quality of cassia that you buy makes a big difference. The first time I used Cassia on my hair, I didn't like the result at all. The second time I used it, I loved the result! I used the same batch of cassia, and the only difference was that I had used henna on my hair a couple of times in between the cassia applications. My hair was in overall better condition when I used cassia the second time. Maybe that made a difference? Also, try mixing the cassia/warm water with some yoghurt. It will apply easier and rinse out MUCH easier. I also think it gives much better shine and conditioning. An indian lady suggested doing that, and I've found it works well with Cassia. I also used to use yoghurt with henna, but found that it inhibited the dye uptake slightly and my greys weren't covering as well.

If you have curly hair, you might also want to try Amla. Mix it with warm water and apply to your hair for an hour or so. Amla is GREAT for enhancing curl and adding shine.

Keep experimenting, you will find something that works for your hair eventually :)

spunkymonki87
December 28th, 2005, 03:50 PM
As Rini alluded, cassia should be applied twice (but not on the same day) in order for it to have the desired effect.

Flaxen
December 28th, 2005, 04:17 PM
Yes, believe it or not, the answer to a disappointing cassia treatment is to do it again.

Just a few tips:
Make sure you are getting cassia. If you don't know what's in your neutral henna, that could be a problem. It won't be anything that will hurt you, but it might also be a waste of money. Mehandi.com is where a lot of people get their cassia.

Boiling water is not necessary, and it may even cook your cassia. That's probably not as much of a problem as with henna because you don't want to color, but hot tap water is more than warm enough.

After you have rinsed away as much of the herbs as you can with water, coat your hair thoroughly with a nice slippy conditioner. Leave it on for a few minutes, and then rinse well. It will help to remove the last bits of herbs and add lots of moisture to your hair.

Give it another try, and you should be much happier with the results.:smile:

Lois
December 28th, 2005, 04:54 PM
Thanks for the suggestions...I may try it again, this time ordering it from the internet.

Thanks for the hot water/boiling water thing, I figured my problem was that the water wasn't hot enough to avtivate the henna, whatever is 'activated' means in regards to henna.

I will probably try it with yogurt or some other medium to apply it to my hair.

I did do a good shampoo and conditioner (don't worry - natural shampoo!) and my hair is back to normal, I think the dryness was from little bits of dry herb in my hair. MY hair actually feels pretty nice now, but not terribly different than before.

A question: If henna 'coats' or 'shields' the hair, does that mean that all of my oiling/conditioning will go to waste?

Thanks for all of your help!

Rini
December 28th, 2005, 05:06 PM
Well, henna (lawsonia inermis) does not coat the hair. That is a popular misconception. The dye molecules (lawsone) in henna migrate into the hair shaft and bind with the keratin there.

Oiling and conditioning will not go to waste, but you may find that after using henna you may not need to do as much conditioning.

Carolyn
December 28th, 2005, 05:42 PM
I've used Rainbow Neutral henna twice with bad results. My hair was greenish. :nono: Yuck! It perhaps had a little more body. I don't think it had more shine. I did it twice maybe 4 to 6 weeks apart. I'll never do it again.

Rini
December 28th, 2005, 11:42 PM
Carolyn, I have heard really bad reviews about Rainbow products on the hennaforhair site. Apparently they are full of additives and cause all sorts of strange reactions. Pure Cassia should not colour your hair. That green result is suspect. If you do ever decide to try cassia again, then purchase it from a reputable supplier...there are plenty on the web.

Carolyn
December 29th, 2005, 03:47 AM
Carolyn, I have heard really bad reviews about Rainbow products on the hennaforhair site. Apparently they are full of additives and cause all sorts of strange reactions. Pure Cassia should not colour your hair. That green result is suspect. If you do ever decide to try cassia again, then purchase it from a reputable supplier...there are plenty on the web.

Hi Rini, thanks for your reply. At the time I did that ( spring 2001) Rainbow was the only kind of henna I'd ever heard of. The whole experience really put me off the henna thing. I've read that you shouldn't use henna if you are coloring your hair. I'm using Natural Instincts. So I'm afraid to try neutral henna again.

Josephine
December 29th, 2005, 05:20 AM
I've read that you shouldn't use henna if you are coloring your hair. I'm using Natural Instincts.

I use 100% Henna made for using on your body to color my hair, not the kind that you get in an American supermarket or a beauty supply shop (ie no metallic salts or anything else but henna). I had been coloring my hair for a year with Clairol semi and permanent color, and the henna worked fine. I did a test strand first, of course. The pics below and in my avatar are of henna over the Clairol.

Rini
December 29th, 2005, 06:14 PM
Josephine is spot on. Pure body art quality henna is a different beast to the stuff you buy commercially. The first time I ever used it was just 2 weeks after a permanent chemical dye job and my hair turned out FANTASTIC. I have also heard that not only can you use BAQ henna over chemically dyed hair, but you can use chemicals on BAQ henna'ed hair.

As for neutral henna (cassia), you should be able to use that over virgin or chemically treated hair with no problems. I was alluding to the Rainbow "neutral henna" as not being pure cassia. There were probably additives in there that caused your undesirable result.

zaftig2k
December 29th, 2005, 07:01 PM
I use Cassia (neutral henna) once a month and love it. Several things, though. I use Cassia from Catherine (Mehandi.com), which is very high quality cassia. It is very fine and easy to mix and apply, as well as to remove. Cassia from a box, may have other ingredients, and there is no way to tell it's quality.

I mix my cassia with plain yogurt and water, and it helps in the rinsing stage. When rising, I also use a fair amount of Vo5 conditioner to aid in getting out all the cassia. But you must rinse a VERY long time to be sure that you get it all out. If you do not it will leave your hair dry and gritty.

Cassia (somewhat like henna) is a bit of an art, and does take some trial and error, however for many of us, it really is wonderful. I would also ad, that it seems that the people here that have the best results are those with medium to fine hair, and straight to wavy. Thicker and curlier haired folks don't seem to have the best results. However this is a YMMV thing.

Artista
December 29th, 2005, 07:37 PM
Morrocco Method is what I use. Very very easy with little mixing and no fuss of dye release and such (for henna), only on the head for 2 hours, and rinses out faster than any other kind I've tried. His stuff is quality too, and the colors you can choose from rock spot on! Also no shampooing or conditioning needed afterwards either. Hair is soft once dry. :rockerdud

Roberta
December 29th, 2005, 07:39 PM
I've used the Cassia twice now and I think I love it. My hair is fine and the ends are in bad condition, but it feels easily twice as strong with Cassia on it. The stuff smells funny and is expensive but I think the benefits are worth it. My hair appears slightly darker to me, the way wax or oil darkens dry wood. (no one else notices, maybe I'm imagining it) I should cut about six inches off to get all beautiful healthy hair, but I won't, will just work with it as is and see what I can do. There's hope!