Anyone out there get TRUE brown and no red

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joe
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Anyone out there get TRUE brown and no red

I have used henna five times and have never had a good result.  I first tried half henna and half indigo, then added amla, then tried 1/3 henna and 2/3 indigo and amla, next mostly indigo with little henna, and last I did two step process with henna  and amla first, then dyed with indigo.  I havenot gotten the result I wanted - natural brown color.  The last straw was when a stranger said to me what a crazy color you have. 

Has anyone had success getting a real brown color, not reddish brown.  If so, let me know how you did it.   Thanks.

ACWN
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Re: Anyone out there get TRUE brown and no red

I can only think of one real suggestion... Apply a very high dye content henna, like the current batch of Yemen (Lady C said she has a new one coming in and hasnt tested it yet) or Celebration.

 

Apply for several hours (at least 3), then once your hair dries from washing it out, hit it with a flat iron. If you dont have one, borrow one. If you need help with it, ask for it.

 

The super high heat of a flat or curling iron will super oxidize the henna and make it more brown. A blow dryer does not get hot enough in most cases.

 

Once you get it to an even color all around, mix and apply the indigo for a short period of time. That should give you a more natural brown.

 

 

You may wish to strand test this, if you can.

 

 

You could also try a two step of a 50/50 hennigo, then a fairly short application of just indigo.

 

 

Remember that every one's hair is different and what works from them may not wont work for you - perfect example is of ravinder's mix of 80% indigo to 20% henna, it worked fine for her but for the majority of people that isnt enough henna for the indigo to bind properly to the hair. And plant dyes may not be for you at all, unfortunately.

Old_Sue
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Re: Anyone out there get TRUE brown and no red

Yes.  I have also done the all henna, henna plus indigo, henna plus amla plus indigo, henna plus coffee plus indigo, henna plus walnut plus cloves, henna in an iron pot, etc.  I totally disagree with ACWN about using a flat iron to brown it out.  That just makes it oxidize to burgundy. Increasing the amount of indigo produces a funky dark color that doesn't occur in nature.   True brown without red is a challenge but it can be done.  It requires the right mix, and more importantly the right timing, which is very individual

 

My hair is fairly gray. The rest is a mediocre average neutral brown.   What  I have settled on that works is a mixture of henna and buxus.  However, if you use any acid to dye release your henna, the buxus portion doesn't work.  I am currently using 50/50 henna and buxus, cut with non-dye released cassia to dilute the intensity.  I am only using room temperature black tea or warm water as my liquid.  My experience is that buxus mixed with acid equals no color.  I aslo am not using a high dye content henna. I am quite happy with the henna for African hair because it produces plenty of dye and it rinses easily. 

 

The only drawback is this....the color fades overall .  It does not fade to red  only however.   I have read for some that the buxus fades, but in my experience without acid in the henna, the henna fades too. For me, when mixed only with tea or water, the color fades evenly. On my grays, it fades to blond.   So, it means doing pretty regular treatments, but I don't mind.  It never fades completely, so over time, you can get there to brown without red because there is always some build up .

Carrie
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Re: Anyone out there get TRUE brown and no red

Hi Sue, I'd love to see pictures!! and could we hear more about how long you let it sit (if you do) for dye release, do you mix them separately, and how long do you apply?  It would be fantastic to learn more about how to help people get brown without red, even if it does fade.

ACWN
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Re: Anyone out there get TRUE brown and no red

I totally disagree with ACWN about using a flat iron to brown it out.  That just makes it oxidize to burgundy.

 

That isnt always true. A lot of reports I recall say it becomes darker and usually more brown because it almost seems to burn the henna (which is why I mentioned it in the first place, and not literally burns, just seems so), but getting burgundy doesnt surprise me either - which is why I said to strand test.

spring water
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Re: Anyone out there get TRUE brown and no red

"However, if you use any acid to dye release your henna, the buxus portion doesn't work. ... My experience is that buxus mixed with acid equals no color."

I've been thinking the same about indigo and just wanted to ask the following:

If indigo needs neutral liquid (water), then how can it work perfectly after we mix the indigo paste with the acidic henna paste? Maybe this is why the henna-indigo mix colors our hair quite reddish brown (even when using indigo heavy mixes) instead of the simple/pure brown many of us would like to get? Because henna can work better than indigo?

I also wonder why is it good to use lemon juice for the henna if someone wants dark brown results using a hendigo mix? Lemon is for blonds, isn't it? Isn't black tea better? As I know it's acidic too.

ACWN
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Re: Anyone out there get TRUE brown and no red

The theory is is that henna itself acts as a middle man to the acid. If you mix indigo directly with acid, it wont work at all. But if you mix henna with acid, then indigo with the dye released henna, its okay.

 

However, what we knew a year ago to be the right thing for henna or indigo isnt what we now know to be the right thing. A year ago it was suggested you wait 15 minutes or so for the indigo to dye release before you apply it. We now know that thats a BAD thing to do.

 

In a few months or even a few days we may discover that for better brown results its best to use as little acid as possible with henna (such as mostly distilled water with just a teaspoon of lemon juice). Acid is a big part of what helps henna bind to the hair permanently and properly, which is what helps the indigo bind. Its all a matter of people testing and seeing.

 

Lemon isnt "for blondes", the lemon has absolutely nothing to do with the color beyond inducing a strong, stable, long lasting dye release. Its not going to make the henna more blond or lighter or anything like that. It infact reduces the orange stage somewhat in the first 24 - 48 hours, it also causes infinite, subtle darkening/browning of henna over time.

 

Tea will not have a long lasting result on the color, so far that we have found. Teas and spices do not permanently dye, they stain. Spices last only a few days, teas probably only last a few washes. Black tea, or coffee for that matter, is not going to make the outcome more brown. It simply just doesnt work that way.

spring water
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Re: Anyone out there get TRUE brown and no red

Thank you for telling these experiences!

"But if you mix henna with acid, then indigo with the dye released henna, its okay." - This is what I thought of too but I wasn't sure. Chemistry is a mystery for me :-)

Next time I will use just a very little lemon juice for the henna, less than I used last time. (Enough for the dye release but the leas as possible). Maybe it helps :-)

ACWN
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Re: Anyone out there get TRUE brown and no red

Please let us know how it goes and how much lemon to water you used, that would be a HUGE help.

spring water
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Re: Anyone out there get TRUE brown and no red

Okay :-)

joe
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Re: Anyone out there get TRUE brown and no red

Thanks for the replies.  I think I will try the buxus after I learn some more about it.  And I will not use much acid with the henna.

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