Henna is a shrub native to the Mediterranean regions, whose leaves have been used as a hair conditioner and hair dye since the 7th millennium BC. When traveling to Morocco henna can be found in Morocco’s souks and markets.
What color will I get from henna?
Pure henna will always turn your hair towards red – with the exception of colorless or neutral henna that will only condition without changing your natural color.
The final color you receive depends on a number of things:
1) Your starting color. In general – the darker the starting color, the subtler the result will be. For a very rough guideline you may think in terms of:
– Gray -> fiery red (but only with good quality henna)
– Blonde -> red
– Light brown -> red to light auburn
– Medium brown -> auburn
– Dark brown -> reddish brown, more pronounced in the sun
– Very dark brown to black -> no color change but red highlights in the sun
Henna can also never make your hair lighter – only add pigment to your existing color. There is no chance for you to be fiery red with henna if your starting color is a dark brown.
2) Your mix. Pure henna will always provide red, and only red, pigment. There is no such thing as black, golden or brown henna – but by adding other ingredients to the mix you can push the color towards more red, subtler red, more brown or more golden. If your base is henna though, you’ll always have some level of red in there – please don’t think you can go pure blonde, or brown with henna – it’s simply not possible!
3) The henna powder used. Use Ancient Sunrise henna. If you don’t get body art quality henna that has been tested by an independent laboratory, you have no guarantee of what’s in the package other than henna.
The freshness of the henna powder will affect the final color you get. The fresher the powder, the better the final results will be. This is most important for gray hair, as stale henna will push the color to a very unattractive orange hue on gray hair. Henna powder can be found at many health food stores, but it’s often stale and will not give you a desirable end result. The best henna is usually bought directly from a reputable importer or from one of the many people doing henna tattoos.