Henna, Indigo, Amla - allergy patch test result - advice appreciated!

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Last seen: 3 years 9 months ago
Joined: 2015-02-05 06:05
Henna, Indigo, Amla - allergy patch test result - advice appreciated!
Hi everyone,
I'm new both to dying my hair with henna/indigo and this forum, although I've been lurking here for some time and am loving all the tips and advice!
So my story seems quite typical - I've been dying my hair black for many years and was becoming increasingly allergic to permanent chemical dyes. The last time I dyed my hair (3-4 months ago) it was so bad I swore I would never go anywhere near the stuff again - I felt awful, my eyelids were swollen and my head was covered with blistered, weeping eczema that was agony for over a month before it started to clear up (I get contact eczema from nickel too, along with occasional flare ups for apparently no reason).
Since I'm in my early thirties, going pretty grey and LOVE my black hair, I wanted to find a natural alternative. So I researched online, found Mehandi.com, and ordered some henna, indigo and amla. I plan on doing a two step process and using amla in the henna to get as cool a blue-black tone as possible out of the indigo (customer service were super helpful and advised me to do this).
Last night I was extremely nervous to do a patch test, especially since I had read some reports of people being allergic to indigo. I mixed a bit of henna, amla and indigo separately with water and blobbed the pastes on the skin of my forearm for two hours, then washed them off. The henna tingled a bit and the amla itched slightly, but nothing drastic. When I washed off the tests my skin was pink in the shape of the spot where the amla had been, no redness under the henna or indigo, just some pretty stains :-). This morning I got up - no red mark where the amla had been, no raised eczema-like bumps, all smooth and good. I could not believe it.
So, since the amla-induced redness went away overnight and wasn't drastic, I'm guessing that this could just be because the amla is acidic and I have sensitive skin? I just wanted to see if anyone else has had any terrible reactions after such a patch test - I'm super nervous about covering my whole head with anything after what happened to me the last time I used a dye!
I still have two small patches of eczema behind my ears where my glasses are irritating the skin - the skin isn't broken anymore, just a bit red and itchy, and almost but not quite gone. As long as I avoid these areas, will I be ok? The rest of my scalp is back to normal but quite dry and still a bit itchy on occasion - I have read that henna will actually help with this? Is that true?
Also, I was just wondering - since my skin is so sensitive, should I wash my hair with shampoo after rinsing out the henna and then again after rinsing out the indigo? I've read conflicting advice regarding this and I don't want to immediately pull all the dye out of my hair, but I certainly want to make sure all the residue is gone since my skin is so sensitive. I'm planning on leaving the henna/amla mix on for four hours and the indigo for two - hope this will be enough to get a true black.
Sorry for the long first post, but any advice on how best to proceed would be much appreciated! I'm so excited to have found what is looking like a viable alternative to dye my hair - thanks so much mehandi for all the online information! It really does look like this is going to be a life saver for me!
Last seen: 2 weeks 11 hours ago
Joined: 2014-05-20 10:39
I would recommend checking

I would recommend checking with your doctor if you are not too sure if you were having reactions or not.

Henna can help with dry scalp, this is true!  We also have a shampoo bar: nettle/comfrey/pepperment shampoo bar that is great for dry scalps as well!

I would recommend shampooing inbetween, then after, condition, shampoo, condition.  It won't pull out any dye, just any extra molecules that were not able to bind with the keratin in the hair.

That should be plenty of timing!

Let us know if you need any more assistance =]

Last seen: 3 weeks 4 days ago
Joined: 2011-08-21 05:34

I can't advise about the other stuff, but as for the amla reaction - yes, it was probably just because amla is acidic and you have sensitive skin! If I do an amla face mask I get redness very soon (so usually only leave it for 1 minute or so), but I have used amla in henna mixes without any problems. 

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