Izzy’s First Cassia Treatment

The other day I was out and about when it sort of hit that I had no desire to buy ANY products. Not one! So I decided to try this henna that I had seen in my store, called Avigal Henna. Now, I didn’t want to give Izzy reddish highlights, so I got the neutral color. BUT – we all know that henna doesn’t come in a neutral color, so I was a little confused. But I was like what the hey, as long as my hair doesn’t fall out I’m fine. The henna claims to make your hair shiny and full. I followed the directions on the box and added honey, ACV and coconut oil – I didn’t measure, I just added hot water last until the mixture was a pudding like consistency.

Then, I applied the mix to my hair kind of like I would a bootleg relaxer, but without gloves. Goodness, this stuff was HEAVY on Izzy! When it was in my hair my curls were stretched out so much that I looked like a skater boy with a curly bowl cut. Womp. After application, I wrapped my head in saran wrap a la cone head and let it sit for 4 hrs. My head got really hot, so it kept me nice and toasty as I napped and watched movies. Eventually, I felt like the plastic was too tight around my head, so I just decided I had had enough, and got in the shower to rinse.

Ummm…talk about washing a swamp out of my hair! Remind me to never join the army…I hear they have to do basic training and crawl in the mud. There were bits of twigs and grossness in my hair – and it was SO HARD to wash out!! I cowashed about 3 times, and also shampooed with my Plant Shampoo. I was rinsing for like, 20 minutes! I felt like there were still twigs in my hair, but the water was rinsing clear – I couldn’t take it anymore!

When I got out of the shower, Izzy had not changed in color at all, but she felt very soft and my frizzier sections in the front seemed smoother. I even wore her all fro’ed out today because my hair didn’t look frizzy and I didn’t want to ruin the softness. Therefore, I am definitely a fan! However, I was still confused about the henna part – this wasn’t henna, so what was it? So I went to my trusty friend, Google, and found this from mehandi.com:

If you have a box of green stuff that says “neutral henna”, that green powder is neither neutral nor henna.  There is no such plant as neutral henna!  Henna is Lawsonia inermis, and has a red-orange dye molecule.  The green “neutral henna” powder is most likely to be Cassia obovata leaf!

Cassia obovata powder looks very much like henna powder, but  generally does not stain hair or hands. It is an excellent conditioner which makes hair glossy and thick, with a healthy scalp.  When you mix this green leaf powder with warm water,  it has a strong smell similar to a heap of warm mowed grass.  If your powder stains your hair or hands yellow, it probably has some rhubarb root mixed into it.

Oh! Okay, so I guess it was cassia, lol. Meh, I’m still a fan. However, I also read that the results of cassia are fleeting while henna is more permanent…so…up next, henna! The only con to this treatment was that washing it out stinks, but I mean, that’s life.

4 comments

  1. Your experience with cassia sounds great. I haven’t tried it yet but I do henna which gives me color and conditioning. When you do try hennaing your hair, make sure you get stuff from a henna artist…ask for the stuff they use to make designs on people’s skin because it’s really fresh and will give you a good color, and best of all, the henna is really well-sifted so you don’t have to worry about washing out sticks. Check out the listings at http://www.hennatribe.com for a supplier.

    I usually mix it with water and leave it on for about 2 hours, all wrapped up like you did, and then I lie in the tub and soak for about 5-10, to loosen up the henna in my hair. Then I shower and rinse and comb it all out. Some people find henna drying (I don’t know if it’s the henna or all the rinsing after that does it). You can put an egg or olive oil into your paste to give you extra conditioning, or just condition it with some other product afterwards.

    Henna is a transparent reddish brown dye…your natural color will show through the red. So if you have blonde hair henna will make it clown orange, but if you have black hair, you won’t see much of a change except when the sun hits it. Brown hair will turn auburn. You can get a darker color by doing repeated applications to build up layers of color. Your hair comes out really shiny, thick and silky.

    1. Thanks, great tips! Me, being the impatient gal that I am, did a henna last night! My hair felt great from cassia so I wasn’t concerned about drying my hair out…I mixed it with amla, green tea, honey, and EVOO (so it might be considered a gloss) and left it on overnight. I actually found henna MUCH less messy than the cassia b/c it wasn’t grainy and twiggy. I used Reshma Henna that I got from my Indian grocery store. Because I used honey and EVOO, my hair was not dry AT ALL; in fact, I easily finger detangled as I rinsed out the henna.

      I am going to try it a few more times before I put up a post, but I am loving it – my color is different but it wasn’t too wild looking and my hair is SO much smoother! I keep hearing that the benefits get better as you continue treatments. Next time, I am going to skip the honey and amla, and only add EVOO, then follow-up with a honey/EVOO DC.

  2. There are several different treatments with the Cassia and Amla giving you the benefits of Henna without loosening the curl and the color. I have used henna several times and love the effects – it can leave hair a little dry so I do the gloss treatment which is adding conditioner to your henna mix.

    A tip for washing out that has worked well for me – adding coconut milk or conditioner with some slip like Tresemme naturals helps it rinse well. Also, I run water in the tub and bend over and dip my head in and use my hands to run it over and just let it soak in it for a little while and it is much less shampooing and manipulating. You can also pour water in a bucket and rinse it over the kitchen sink.

    Since your hair already has a red tint I don’t think the red in henna will be a strong for you. Also, for the color to show well, you let the mix sit overnight for dye release and then apply. I think it takes 2-3 treatments before the full effect starts to happen. If you want the effect to happen faster you can sit under the dryer – I believe 15-20 minutes equals one hour unheated. Make sure you wear gloves and yes it looks like pooh, smells like pooh, stains everything it comes in contact with but the smell goes away pretty quickly, especially if you use your dessert products.

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