Long Term Puzzle - Looking For Some Advice. Catherine?

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The Pea
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Long Term Puzzle - Looking For Some Advice. Catherine?

Hello. I have been using henna from Mehandi.com for years. I never seem to get a colour anything like the photos i see on this site, so i am going to describe the process i use in case anyone can help me out.

Here's what i do.

Mix henna in glass or plastic container with a wooden spoon. I use enough apple cider vinegar in the water to make me pull a face if i taste it. I mix it to the consistency of mashed potato and leave it overnight. Then i add water till the consistency is like yoghurt. I stick my finger in the mix at this point to test if the dye has released, it shows a strong orange colour if i leave it for a minute then rinse it under the tap. I put it in at the roots, leave it for nearly 3 hours, then put it through the rest and wait about 15 minutes before rinsing. I use whatever cheap conditioner i have around to help get it out. I generally don't shampoo until the next day.

My hair is naturally a meduim blonde. I have used various batches of henna incliding Yemen, Pakistan, the silver packets and most recently Dark Of The Moon. I seem to have the same problem regardless. My hair goes a kind of dark, muddy, auburn colour with brownish orange highlights in the sun. It isn't a pretty colour at all. What i want is a vivid orange or red like i see in the pictures here and on a lot of people i meet around the place. Has anyone got any ideas about this puzzle? Is it possible that some mysterious property of my hair means i can't get the colour other people do?

Wistfully, Penny.

The Pea
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Re: Long Term Puzzle - Looking For Some Advice. Catherine?

I forgot to add that i often make a double batch and then freeze the second half, put it in the fridge overnight to defrost, then use it.

Danmara
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Re: Long Term Puzzle - Looking For Some Advice. Catherine?

 I can't be certain, but I suspect hard water may be the culprit. Either the water that you mix with, or buildup in your hair, or both (likely both).

Try a clarifying treatment, invest in a shower filter and use filtered or bottled water to mix your henna and see if that helps. :)

Carrie
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Re: Long Term Puzzle - Looking For Some Advice. Catherine?

Yep, I agree with Danmara's assessment and her advice. It totally sounds like a mineral issue with your water that you shower with, so those minerals have built up in your hair. When you add henna or cassia to that mineral buildup, you get an icky shade of dull brown (sometimes green or black).

Mehandi makes an inexpensive product called Rainwash that removes the mineral buildup from your hair: 

http://www.mehandi.com/shop/rainwash/index.html

There is a similar product available at Sally Beauty Supply called ION crystal clarifying treatment, also about $3.

CCartwrightJones
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Re: Long Term Puzzle - Looking For Some Advice. Catherine?

Heat can make the color go muddy ... do you use a blow dryer or presser?

Otherwise, I bet hard water is the problem.  Yes, try rainwash.

Jen
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Re: Long Term Puzzle - Looking For Some Advice. Catherine?

 And I'll give yet another vote for rainwash. I'm also curious about your natural color.

The Pea
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Re: Long Term Puzzle - Looking For Some Advice. Catherine?

Hello.

Thanks so much for your advice. I hope i am replying in the right place to you all, i wasn't sure whether to add another reply to my own post or reply to one of your replies..

My natural colour is Medium blonde.

I do use a hairdryer everyday! I didn't know that could cause trouble with henna. If this is the problem is it fixable?

The water here (South Australia) is famously bad but not i think for minerals.. more for being just really bad water which has been treated with a lot of chlorine and flouride. I do meet local people with lovely coloured hennaed hair though, perhaps i will start asking them if they use rainwater at home.

If i use Rainwash will it fix the dull brown colour, or just stop it from getting worse next time i dye it?

I wondered if it was possible that i am leaving it on for too long and it is just getting too dark? It does seem to be brown rather than red though and i would have thought too long would just result in a darker red.

I have always been a staunch henna fan but my hair is looking so bad i am on the verge of either dyeing it black or trying to bleach the brown out enough to use a chemical red...

Best Wishes, Penny.

 

Carrie
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Re: Long Term Puzzle - Looking For Some Advice. Catherine?

Rainwash should remove the minerals and fix the problem, leaving your color brighter. With henna on medium blonde hair, you should be able to see bright orange/red color in sunlight, though henna does look quite different in all different kinds of lighting. Mine would look oddly rusty-brown in fluorescent lighting but brilliant orange in sunlight, rich burgundy on a cloudy day, and nicely auburn with incandescent lights indoors.

Sometimes these weird discolorations happen when municipal water systems add things to the water at certain times of year (seems to happen a lot in winter and early spring, from what I can observe), so you can get this issue all of a sudden even if your results had been perfect on previous applications. Rainwash should fix that sort of problem, as well as naturally-occuring high mineral content in well or city water.

The Pea
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Re: Long Term Puzzle - Looking For Some Advice. Catherine?

Hello.

Thanks for your advice.

So i looked it up and apparently i do have hard water here. I will order some Rainwash but i really want to fix my hair quickly as i have some upcoming events, and don't want to wait for Rainwash to arrive in the post to South Australia. Does clarifying shampoo do the same thing? Or are there any things i can do that will have the same effect?

Best Wishes, P.

 

Carrie
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Re: Long Term Puzzle - Looking For Some Advice. Catherine?

Clarifying shampoo may help a bit with removing mineral buildup, or not; people's experience with it varies. It's not intended to remove mineral buildup the way Rainwash is - it's intended to remove styling product buildup.

Danmara
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Re: Long Term Puzzle - Looking For Some Advice. Catherine?

 It seems to have worked for me and is worth a shot. Can't hurt.

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