suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

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Teeka78
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suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

Hi everyone,

I am looking for suggestions on what type/mixture of henna to use to dye over a synthetic red dye. My natural hair color is a warm, dark brown, but I dyed it to more of a reddish brown a few months ago. Now I have about 2-3 inches of new growth. I would like to maintain a nice, rich, reddish brown color. Also, is there anything I could add to enhance the strengthening effects of the henna for my dry, damaged hair?  I would appreciate any suggestions. If this kind of question is already answered somewhere on the site, could someone tell me how to access it?

thanks!

Carrie
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

Your previously dyed hair is lighter (it sounds like) and more porous due to chemical damage than the virgin roots, so it's likely to come out a redder shade than the roots at first. Still, I'd suggest you start by using just henna at first and then you can decide if you want to add some indigo to the mix on the previously dyed length. Possibly a few applications of henna will even things up to your liking. I'd go for Celebration since it has a high dye content and will give you more color buildup faster than the other hennas Catherine has right now.

I don't know of anything you would add to henna to increase the strengthening effect since henna is primo at that all on its own. If your hair feels dry afterwards, you can oil it or do a deep conditioning treatment. Adding such things to the henna itself isn't necessarily as good since they may interfere to some degree with henna uptake. Some people do it, but if people have trouble getting good dye uptake we advise they separate the henna from oil-containing treatments and do them one after the other.

Teeka78
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

Thanks for your input, Carrie. In your comments, did you mean that I should just dye the roots with henna or dye my whole head until I get the desired shade? Or did you mean that I should dye my whole head with just henna and then later, depending on the results, use a mixture just on the pre-dyed part? Hope I am not confusing you; just want to make sure I understand.

 

thanks

Carrie
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

You can try using just henna (no indigo) all over several times - if you like - to see if that will even things up. Then, at any point if you feel it is still 2-toned, you can use a mix including some indigo on the length. Starting with henna-only is worth doing, in my opinion, as usually several applications of henna will help your hair's overall condition and also blend out the color differences to a degree that you may feel you can live with.

If you prefer, you don't have to do multiple applications of henna before you try to correct the length to match the roots. But be cautious with your use of indigo on the damaged length because it will likely take up indigo quite strongly; mildly to moderately damaged hair will do this, while very damaged hair may have trouble holding onto dye sometimes.

Teeka78
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

Okay, that sounds do-able...so what's the difference between Celebration and the henna for African hair? And how much would I need to get for about 6 inches of hair (roughly chin length).  Thank you!

Carrie
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

Celebration has a higher dye content, but the Henna for African Hair (so named because of its very fine sift for easy rinsing) is pretty decent on that score as well. For chin length hair I think 100 gm would be plenty.

Teeka78
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

Thanks for all this great information.

One last question (I think): if I wanted to use Cassia at some point. Could I mix that in with the henna or should I just do Cassia treatments separately? If I did that, would the Cassia, affect the color of the henna?

Carrie
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

You can use cassia either together with henna or separately. If you use it with henna, it dilutes the henna color. A 50/50 mix will give more of a coppery color simply because you're using less of the orange/red dye of henna.

Teeka78
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

I tried some Godrej Nupur henna and it appears to have made my previously dyed hair bright red while having almost no effect on the virgin roots. Perhaps it just looks this way because the previously dyed hair is so bright; and I know it will darken as it oxidizes, but my hair is still two-toned, even more so than before. What can I do to get closer to a warm, dark brown color? Carrie, does your previous advice still apply? Should I mix henna with indigo only on the previously dyed part? I am looking for something relatively quick and easy, ie. I don't want to do multiple henna applications. I think I would try one or two more applications before I give up.

And by the way, would it be possible to use a synthetic dye over this henna? It does not have any metallic compounds listed in the ingredients, although I realize this doesn't mean that they are not there.

thanks,

 

Fatin

Carrie
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

You can apply a mixture of henna and indigo over all of your hair. For warm dark brown I'd use something like 50/50 henna/indigo or 40/60 henna/indigo.

You should do a strand test with the synthetic dye before you do your whole head with it, since you don't really know if this henna contains metallic salts or not.

Be aware, though, that when you use a regular commercial dye containing peroxide over hennaed hair, color results can be unpredictable. I used an ash blonde dye over my hennaed hair and got dark brown. This happens because henna color won't lift the way regular hair pigment will. Then the dye faded completely within 2-3 weeks. So while you can use it *safely* it won't perform normally.

Teeka78
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

Carrie, do you still think Celebration mixed with indigo would be better to get my hair closer to one color? Or would the Henna for African Hair work just as well?

Carrie
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

I think that either one, the Celebration or the henna for African Hair, will give more dye than the henna you used previously, and help to even out the color of your two-toned hair. Multiple applications will blend your 2 color zones more and more each time, but you will likely see some 2-tonedness after your first application.

I know you want to avoid multiple applications but the nature of henna dictates that you may not be able to achieve a very particular color on your very first try on 2-toned hair. You may luck out and get exactly the right color your first time, let's hope so!  :)

Unlike chemical dyes, henna doesn't wipe the slate clean by lifting your existing color and then depositing new color. It add translucent color over whatever you've got going on currently, and it reacts in an individual way to your particular hair so your results will not look just like everyone elses.

If you were to use henna/indigo right away, it will still likely look different on your virgin hair than on your previously dyed and hennaed length. My original advice is still my preference for you: Start with a good quality henna, see how much you can even the color up with that, and only resort to indigo if you need to.

If you prefer, you can start with henna/indigo but just be aware that it may not give you an even color all over. Applying it just to the previously dyed length is an option. It's very wise to do a strand test first to see how this will look on your synthetically dyed length ... more porous hair can pick up indigo very strongly. You may need to adjust the ratio or the timing to correct for that.

Teeka78
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

Thanks so much for this advice. I just ordered some Celebration and some indigo just in case.

 

So, I'm curious, what is it about the nature of Henna that makes you think it will even out my color (or make it less two-toned) eventually? Does Henna get darker with multiple applications? I'm sort of envisioning (hoping) that multiple hennas will make my virgin hair lighter/redder and my dyed hair darker. At the same time, I don't want to end up with bright red hair. I guess it's the trade off for using a natural, healthier alternative to synthetic dyes. You don't know exactly what you're going to get.

Carrie
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

You're right, it is a trade off. If you study the Mixes page and look at before and after pics, and see what ratio of henna/indigo/cassia and/or amla they used, you'll have a fairly accurate idea of what to expect but it is hard if you have a *very* specific color in mind, to achieve that on your first try, or in some cases people want a color that henna isn't likely to be able to give them (like an ash blonde).

Mixes page here:

http://www.hennaforhair.com/mixes/index.html

If you henna light hair, it will get darker with multiple apps. If you henna dark hair multiple times, it gets redder and thus more reflective of red light and can *appear* lighter in some kinds of lighting. If you have both lighter and darker hair, hennaing multiple times can help bring the two colors closer together because you're building up very rich red translucent color over all of it. Dark hair will never become bright red hair but it will have rich red highlights.

To truly get *bright* red from henna you have to start with hair no darker than medium blonde, and then don't keep hennaing it over and over until the color reaches full saturation, which on blonde hair is a coolish burgundy.

To see what full-saturation henna (when you've hennaed enough that it won't get any darker) looks like on different people, go the Images page on Google and type in something like "third henna" or "fourth henna."

Teeka78
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

So why do you think trying the henna a few times would be better than just using henna/indigo straight away?

Either way, I think I will do one full henna treatment. And then if I don't like the way that looks, I will try henna/indigo.

Carrie
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Re: suggestions for using henna over synthetic dye

I think doing one full henna is a good way to go, then assess from there.

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