228 Responses to “The Fine Art of Dying Your Hair with Henna”


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  1. Hi does anyone know how can I dye my black hair dark borwn using Henna. I don’t want to use any chemical on my hair. My hair is already very dry. Do you think using Henna would make them any better??

    • Megan

      Henna does not lighten the hair BC it doesn’t have any chemicals in it. If you apply dark brown henna to the black the only thing it will do is condition your hair and make it look healthy and shiny.

    • Savanna Beavers

      You can use lemon juice, to slightly lighten your hair.

  2. I hv a few tips for henna application – always put a shower cap or plastic bag on the hair after applying henna. If U don’t the henna will dry on the hair making the hair dry. This will lead to hair breakage which means subsequent hair loss. The henna does not need to dry on the scalp.

  3. Claudia

    I have a question for all the red-head ladies. I am not a natural red-head, so I have to keep up with it every couple of weeks. The thing is, my natural hair color is very dark, almost black, so when my roots begin to show they really SHOW. I don’t want to have to re-bleach them before using the Pure Henna Hair Dye from Henna Color Lab, but I’m afraid the color will not stick, I will end up wasting my time, and be left with two completely different tones. All help is greatly appreciated!

  4. Eloiseish

    Hullo, tell me, crunchy ones, I of gray-silver hair at age fifty eight I love intensely, want to use Henna. Tell me what does Henna do for gray silver hair. Will it make it shiny and strong. Are there dangers. Tell me, tell me. Do not want color. Just gleam and strength and supergirlness.

  5. LMAO…! Dear Crunchy Betty, so glad that I had found your tips page about henna…and yes MaidMerawyn henna is like a “gateway drug” I just love the stuff. I was using a brand called Colora but have been unable to find it online recently, so I started to use the hennaking.com brand, and so far its been good. I really got a lot of useful tips here, before, I was making a right turn at wrong and only leaving on my hair for only an hour. This time I left it on for 4 and had great results! Next time I am going to brew up some coffee and try that out.

  6. Cat

    I have been flirting with the idea of henna and I’m so glad I came to you first, mainly because that story will likely end up as the highlight of my day (see what I did there?) I’m naturally a honey-reddish-but-more-honey blonde and I want a really light red to push me over into ginger territory and keep me there most of the time. I’ve seen “hennas” in that color range, but I’ve been a little scared. Hearing your description of its effect on texture I am now determined. Thank you so much for sharing this! I’m almost done laughing now.

  7. Lori J

    enjoyed reading your post. Very funny. I have used henna for several years and really like it.. : )) thank you for your story and aides in using henna. lol L

  8. Reading this was like a comic version of watching Intervention. I’m definitely going to try henna and do it PREPARED–and still screw something up. Thanks for the laughter and the information.

  9. Bunny Rabbit

    Am using henna with water for my hair every week since the past couple of years. My hair is short / curly and dry. Henna makes it thick and gives a reddish tint . Last time a few months back I used la Oreal hair colour which cost me a neat 20.00 Euros and half my hair was on the floor in a few days time . I have vowed never to use artificial colouring again. Back to my henna. I mix it with just water and apply it at 09 00 when the family goes out and wash it off with water at 15 00 when its T time . That night , oil it ( even if its half dry ) , wash it with a shampoo as normal the next day morning . This has been my rewarding routine for the past few years.

    • Arlene

      Several people I know who are hair stylists say that Henna has a metallic base to it that interacts with hair dye and will make your hair brittle and break. If you want to dye after long term henna use, they.recommend you grow hair out till you can cut.most of the henna hair off. I have been playing with henna from Lish. I bought a small crock pot to great henna coconut oil and a bit of lemon juice in. it seems to work really good. I also keep it fairly thick, like gloopy brownie batter. I have a peice of old towel I wrap around the outside of hair before saran wrapping, and covering with a bath cap. so far I love it. I also got smart and engaged a girlfriend to help. Its cleaner and more fun..

  10. I am looking forward to try this tips

  11. Laura

    Thank you for your article. I also thought if I followed the directions that came with my first henna, but panicked as I saw the black little spatters all over! Once I had the rug, counters and sink cleaned I thought I better go see if any ideas. So I second the tub idea, because this isn’t near as easy to apply as bottled dye.

  12. Karie

    I’m so sorry for your adventure. I like Jamila henna the best. I have used henna for more than 20 years with wonderful auburn results. For new users I suggest harvesting the hair from your brush to test the color. Have a friend help you the first time you apply it. And do lots of research before you take the plunge. I like the Henna for Hair website.

  13. mommabear

    I am dying laughing because I am reading this AFTER I did exactly like you did.

  14. Maggy

    Great article! I’ve dyed my hair myself for way too many years and am now covering gray. I use a medium brown color, permanent, Clairol dye with a #20 developer that I buy at Sally’s. Can I use henna over this or do I need to do something with the permanent color, like get rid of it somehow, first? I’d like to stay with a medium brown color that could have a touch of red in it so what color would you suggest? Thank you.

  15. “The first thing NOT to do while dying your hair with henna: Read only one brochure that accompanies the henna preparation.” This is WHY I found your article. Thank you for writing such valuable information!

  16. Cyberkrinn

    When I was in my 20s, long before I needed to, I used Henna to give my naturally Auburn hair some shine and to tame my curls. I loved it. It was messy, but nothing like what you describe. LOL I started going gray a few years ago and started coloring my hair. I’ve decided to stop using commercial hair color, even though my stylist uses a plant-based colorant by Schwartzkopft. I’ll be going back to using Henna as soon as I’m sure it won’t react poorly with what’s left of the professionally colored hair. Your post made me laugh, though. My boyfriend used to apply the Henna for me. He really was pretty awesome like that. :-)

  17. You’re kind of dim, aren’t you?

  18. BIRDEE14

    My natural hair color WAS Black.
    Now at age over 50 I am graying [naturally]
    Maybe a better word is ‘WHITE’. They skip
    gray first.
    I decided to embrace the gray but Problem
    is the GRAYS mostly comes in just above my
    my temples. Giving me a Grandpa Monsters
    look.My Grays have become very resistant to
    coloring. The last commercial hair coloring
    I bought on sale washed out with the shampoo.
    I just want to give the rest of my head of
    hair TIME to catch up to the stubborn
    patches of Gray Framing my face.
    I WISH they would make something to
    make Gray silver white hairs turn the colors
    of Autumn, that is GOLD-Copper-Bronze
    I think HENNA would be my best bet. I have
    used Henna before. I stopped because it is
    difficult to rise HENNA out as it is a
    My last hope may be Henna.

    a darker tone

  19. First of all, I love your posts. I think if you and I ever met, we’d be the best of friends. (I’m not a crazy stalker-type. I swear.)

    OK…I have been toying with the idea of hennaing my hair for a while now. I have been slowly but surely weeding out the chemicals in my life and replacing them with home-made natural remedies. Since doing so, that meant store-bought hair dye was out of the question, which I used to do somewhat often. So, I recently purchased red henna from Mountain Rose Herbs, knowing that it’s going to be amazing quality, and have none of the hidden chemicals a lot of store bought “henna” has. My natural color is a medium auburn, and when I’ve dyed my hair before it was always just to punch up the red a bit.

    Cut to two weeks ago when I was getting my hair cut (a super fun asymmetrical pixie, the handy-work of the amazing Mandi at Birds Barbershop). I mentioned that I just purchased henna. Her eyes grew to the size of saucers and she practically was on her knees begging me NOT to henna my hair! She explained it like this: “Think of henna like a sharpie and you just take that sharpie and are coloring your hair with it. Once it’s on there, you can’t get it off. There is no amount of work that can be done to remove it. Store-bought hair dyes and the dyes we use will eventually fade out with shampoos, but henna is just there. I see so many people come in here and spend hours and hundreds of dollars trying to fix henna. The reason other dye works is because the chemicals actually open up the hair shaft and deposit the color in, while henna just coats the outside of the hair strands.” I mean she went on and on saying, “please don’t do it!” I even gave her my spiel, “well, I’ve heard that a lot of henna isn’t really henna and that it’s very damaging, what I got is the good stuff that’s just real, pure henna.” She didn’t budge. And I know that she wasn’t just trying to lure me into dying my hair there with her, because she doesn’t even do color.

    So here’s my dilemma. Of course, after that, I’m slightly terrified of trying henna. On the other hand, I still really want to try it ’cause I’m a stubborn red-head! I felt like the reasons she was giving me were more about the permanency of henna, and not that it’s damaging. So, I mean, if I like the color…what’s to lose, right? Am I just rationalizing that to make myself feel OK going ahead with the henna? I would feel super foolish if I didn’t like it and went crawling in to see her listening to her ‘I told you so’s.

    I guess what I’m trying to say with this (long) comment is…any suggestions?

    • Arlene

      it’s not the henna after dyeing that’s the problem, in my understanding its going back to dyes after henna. Mine said to keep getting hair cut and wait at least a year before trying commercial dyes again.

  20. V Menon

    Hi, the best henna I’ve tried and am currently using is from etsy.com It is called Henna Color Lab. I have naturally black hair with a lot of gray roots. I use the auburn henna hair dye. This product is a blend so that your hair, when the henna fades doesn’t leave your hair a ghastly orange like natural Indian henna even the recommended body art quality brands. It tints my resistant grays completely. I take it to my hair salon lady to apply evenly(and not mess up my clothes and bathroom. I also take saran wrap to her to cover my hair afterwards. Make sure you put vaseline or something to your ears and hairline. This brand is finely sifted so you don’t have to mix for a long time. My salon lady uses a fork to mix and applies with a brush. I go home with my hair wrapped and leave the henna in for about two hours. Then I apply a lot of suave cherry blossom conditioner onto my wet hair in the shower(try to use lukewarm water and when you rinse out, use cool water) and leave in for a while. This conditioner will help get the henna out. I have read that coconut milk can be used instead of water to keep the hair in good condition as henna can be drying and make your hair tangle or get brittle. I’m going to try that next time. I have long hair and all I need is one pack of this brand of henna, it costs about $10. There are other colors, too and you can try combining. I’ve tried combining wine red and auburn. I’m not in any way affiliated with the company. Just passing along what works for me. I started using henna because regular hair dye was thinning and damaging my scalp and hair. My hairline was disappearing. My hair only started growing back in when I stopped regular hair dye and started taking vitamins and oiling once a week. Let me know if this helps!

  21. V Menon

    Btw, the coconut milk is for mixing with the henna before applying to hair instead of mixing with water. You can also add other hair treatments as well. The same company has treatment packs like detox and Indian gooseberry.

  22. Jill

    HAHA thanks for the laughs, but also for sharing your experience. I would like to switch to henna or henna-ish products from the chemical hair color, and have been researching the best way to do it, so I appreciate all the info you provided. Thanks!

  23. Thanks FOr Such and amazing article

  24. Aw, this was an exceptionally nice post. Taking a
    few minutes and actual effort to generate a top notch article…
    but what can I say… I hesitate a whole lot and never manage to get
    nearly anything done.

  25. It’s great to see the use of henna gain popularity as a natural way to add colour and personality to one’s hairstyle. Awesome post!


  1. […] The Fine Art of Dying Your Hair with Henna | Crunchy Betty – The sixth thing NOT to do while dying your hair with henna: Assume that you can, single-handed, in a bathtub covered with grass-smelling, soon-to-stain splatter …… […]

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