Henndigo NEEDED

Okay, so last night I was trying to figure out what to do with my twist out, so I started playing with it, and I basically effed it up. Oh well…I wanted to try my new DevaCare One Condition anyway, so what did I do? Retwisted my whole head with it. It took about an hour. What can I say, I’m a glutton for punishment. Anyway, I took them out this morning, and took a pic – and my hair looked like this:

I wasn’t going anywhere, and it’s raining, so I didn’t half the twists. I love the definition and shine, but babyyyyy, that red hair has GOT to go. I’m going to prep a henndigo mix before bed, ’cause I’m not having that. My nickname may be WildChild, but no need to be on fire.

xoxo

My New Obsession: Henna

I guess PJism is a gateway drug…because I really felt as if I have tried a plethora of products and have a pretty good idea of what I like for my Izzy…so I was like, well now what do I buy? After a bit of research, I decided that ayurvedic herbs sounded interesting for conditioners – and I mean, who doesn’t like mud in their hair? I wrote a bit ago about my cassia treatment, and LOVED it, but then read that the conditioning effects do not last as long as henna. However, henna also dyes your hair red, which turns some people off. But me, I’ve had just about every color of hair in the spectrum (I started dying my hair when I was 13, and have even had blue hair), so it’s no biggie to me. Now, the true conditioning effects of henna have been thoroughly debated; I am not a chemist, so I cannot analyze how beneficial it is to hair. However, I can say that when I dyed my hair when I had a relaxer,  it always felt thicker, but also stripped (which was that bad part) – dye coats the strands of your hair, which is why it feels thicker. So, if I can thicken my strands without damaging my hair, why wouldn’t I?

Furthermore, my main problem with my hair is I have these two very fine textured spots by my temples that frizz like no other – so, I wanted to attempt to weigh them down. I highly recommend visiting Curly Nikki’s section on henna – there is a ton of info and she gives more recipes.

Important Note: If you have previously chemically treated hair (color or relaxer), you must make sure you are using BODY ART QUALITY henna. Some hennas that come in different colors are not pure and contain metallic dyes and such. If you use these on your hair, it will turn your hair green or do something uncool to it! Both of the brands I used are pure henna, and my color treated hair was fine with them.

My recipe

My recipe consisted of henna (the first time I used amla too) – either Reshma or Jamila – mixed with green tea and about 2 tablespoons of honey to make the mixture smoother and to counteract dryness (frequent use of henna can dry out hair). You can also mix in other ayurvedic herbs in, or coconut/olive oil. Some people also mix in lemon juice or apple cider vinegar to increase dye release.

Did I Let My Mix Sit?

Some suggest letting the henna paste sit for HOURS in order to ensure the dye is released. The first two times I henna’ed with Reshma, I did not let my mixture sit, and saw no difference from when I let it sit for about 9 hrs with Jamila. Each time, I left the henna in my hair for 9-12 hours, so I would think that the dye would release while it’s in my hair.

Application

Basically, I applied the henna to my hair in the same way as I used to apply relaxer; I parted my hair in four sections, then applied at the roots then smoothed the mix down my hair. However, I will say I was not as thorough with my application, because I figured the dye would sink into my hair while I let it sit. If you are new to henna or dye application, I definitely recommend putting some kind of paper down in your bathroom so you don’t get henna all over the place. But, like I said, I’ve been dying my hair for YEARS so I didn’t put anything down. When I was finished, I wrapped my head in saran wrap and went about my business (sleeping, working, cleaning, etc). I left my dye on for 9-12 hours.

Rinsing it Out

Some people fill their tubs with water to loosen the henna before getting in the shower…I’m lazy, so that’s too much work for me! I hopped right in the shower and began rinsing. It’s definitely like rinsing mud out of your hair, but I found this MUCH easier than rinsing out the cassia because I didn’t have all the twiggies and such. I cowashed my hair about 3 times while I rinsed, and it ended up taking about 20 minutes for me to be satisfied with getting all of the henna out of my hair. I looked at my drain to ensure the water was rinsing clear. I hopped out of the shower and got ready to deep condition.

Deep Conditioning

Henna mimics a protein treatment, so it is very important to do a moisturizing deep condition afterwards. I used EVOO/honey, Tresemme Naturals (which has a bit of protein but not much), and Trader Joe’s Nourish Spa (also has a little protein). I thought all three did a pretty good job. I left them on for a few hours.

Did it Loosen My Hair?

Many people say that they have experienced loosening of their curl while using henna. Honestly, I haven’t seen any difference, which is fine, because that wasn’t my purpose anyway.

Benefits

The biggest benefit I have seen since I started doing ayurvedic treatments is that it seems like Izzy is SO much easier to detangle! Often, I feel like my hair gets matted at the roots, which makes detangling suck, and my hair is only 5 inches long! I feared for what would happen as my hair grew. The first time I used henna, using my Denman was a BREEZE! It was awesome. Also, my hair is very shiny – which may also be a result of the brighter color – but I mean, whatever works! I’d like to wait for the color to fully oxidize (a few days) before I post pics, so stay tuned. You can see my henna’ed hair in my latest vids though.

Conclusion

Overall, I am really loving this treatment!!! I think the main thing people need to monitor is the dryness of their hair and scalp to ensure they don’t overdo it. I bought a bunch of henna and mehndi powder from AyurNatural Beauty so I can do more treatments. I love that the treatment is fairly cheap ($5 for a box of henna) and easy to do. I love mud. Also, for my next order I am going to order some indigo to lessen the red a little bit and see how that looks. I’m definitely a henna head now!

Izzy Three Days Later - Final Color

xoxo

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.