Ok so this post is WAY over due…like WAY over due like way back in April over due lol! I figured it’s better late than never! lol Alright so this post is about Reshma FemmeHenna in Toffee. I actually just starting using henna for the first time in February this year. I was so scared to try it for some reason (you can read more about my craziness in that older post lol), but I was sent a HUGE box full of Reshma Femme henna packs so I figured it was time to give it a shot. This marks my 3rd henna application ever :o) I also tried cassia earlier this year which is considered a “neutral henna” because it does not “dye” your hair like henna but gives you the same conditioning benefits. Be sure to read my first post about henna for more info on the Reshma Femme brand :o)
So my first 2 hennas were just plain, strait up henna (not mixed with any other ayurvedic powders) so it gave my hair reddish highlights which are really pretty. Although I liked it, I was not and am not using henna for the color benefits. This is why a lot of naturals prefer to use cassia (does not color your hair but will brighten blond or gray hair). Another thing about the plain henna, is it known to loosen your curl pattern and I felt that is what happened with me. My curl pattern is like non-existent these days, I know amlahelps enhance your curl pattern (as well as tone down the red in henna) and I have to admit, I have been slacking on my ayurvedic treatments so I haven’t done many amla treatments since I’ve used henna, I really need to get back on that because my curls are disappearing! :o(((
BUT, I say all that to say, the Reshma Femme henna in Toffee contains amla and a bunch of other ayurvedic ingredients to help achieve more of a toffee color (isn’t nature amazing?)! It contains a mixture of Henna, Amla, Shikakai, Bhilwa, Hibiscus, Ratan Jot. So because it isn’t just isn’t strait up henna, I felt a bit more comfortable about the curl loosening thing.
Alright, so this go round, I decided to use just tea. I have used just water, and I have also used coconut milk– which I LOVE and actually prefer to use as the base mixture because it gives it a creamier texture for easier application and also the conditioning benefits of coconut. I opted to go with catnip, hibiscus and lemongrass because tea apparently gives henna better dye release and I wanted to get as much as possible this round for demonstration purposes to show how well the Toffee variation of this henna worked as far as color goes.
Here is the henna after I let it sit overnight. I keep the henna covered with saran wrap and place it in a warm place i.e. right next to my boyfriends Xbox 360 lmao!!! ((I’m dead serious though lol)) The warmth helps the dye release, you can see it kind of swirled in the middle. Henna looks so nasty to me but whatever! lol Before I apply it, I mix in a little bit of oil (most likely grapeseed or sweet almond) and some essentials oils because henna doesn’t have the most pleasant smell either lol
Here’s the henna applied to my hair. I made sure to cover my sink and wear gloves since it stains (I didn’t go to war with my bathroom like I did the last time LMAO!!). The gloves that come with the Reshma Femme henna are very thin and break so I used some latex gloves I snatched up from my job lol ((shhh don’t tell nobody hehe)). I separate my hair in about 6 sections and secure each section with a clip to keep it out of the way until I finish. Then once I am done applying, I will release all the sections and pile my hair on top of my head, wrap my hair with saran wrap (see my first henna post for pics of this craziness lol). Then I let it sit in my hair for at least 4-5 hours. I have also put an old beanie over the saran wrap to help “heat up” my head and perhaps get a little greenhouse effectgoing :o)
Ok so for the color results….let me just say, pretty much every post since April shows the color results in case you wanted to see more pics, I don’t think anyone even noticed a difference really to be honest lol my hair actually still has a bit of a reddish hue. I can definitely say my hair is a bit darker, which I had anticipated, but not so much a brown, toffee color. I am thinking I’d have to use the color several times to really get good color pay off and to deepen the tones. Of course with henna, it takes a few days for the color to oxidize and really set in. The first set of pics below are the next day so the color wasn’t that different than it was before. My hair was very shiny and felt stronger and thicker which is why I like henna (not in love though).
The pics below are I want to say the 2nd or 3rd day?? I can’t remember since I took these a couple months ago lol (I know I know, I told you I was slacking!) I can definitely see a difference. Overall, it looks darker, especially the ends where my hair is the lightest. It has more plumish undertones rather than a toffee color. I also didn’t really experience much of the curl pattern loosening which is good, I still think I need to get back on my regular amla treatments to help with the curl definition. I also plan to start doing my twists smaller to help with that as well ((*SIGH* that means MORE time twisting each week lol))
So yea, if you are trying to drastically change up your hair color, henna is probably not the way to go, most “henna-heads” don’t use it for the color anyways but its fun to have a slight change which I certainly do not mind :o) If anything, I am hoping that the henna will help even all the crazy tones I have going on in my hair. I have one more box of Toffee that I will use before I try the next color which is Playful Plum :o) I will be sure to post a review!
Hello! Awhile back I made a post announcing my unofficial campaign for hair growth (check out this post if you missed it) and I listed a few things I planned on trying out this year to see how much length I could gain. Although health should ALWAYS trump length goals, I feel that I am at the point where my hair is very healthy and I can focus on length. Length and health go hand in hand, if your hair and SCALP are healthy, your hair WILL grow!
So I wanted to use this post to introduce the next topical growth remedy as well as give an update to the last one. I started using Bee Mine’s Mango Sulfur Serum in the beginning of March and applied the serum to my scalp, focusing on my edges, about twice a week (any more frequent it would have been too oily for me). I can honestly say this stuff works! I didn’t do an extensive length check photo shoot like I did when I did my Viviscal update (end of February) too much work lol BUT I do have something I can show you hehe…ok don’t laugh…
I found this random grey hair in my edges lol that shows where the color from my last henna treatment ends lmao!! Hey whatever works! I have only done 2 henna treatments, I posted about my first one mid-february and I did the second treatment that following week which would make it around the last week of February. So the place where the henna color ends and the grey starts is the new growth from the end of February (which was around the start of me using the Mango serum…hopefully you followed all of that and I didn’t confuse you lol).
So I say all that to say, I gained about an INCH of growth in my edges since the end of February! I was actually extremely surprised because I wasn’t even sure if my edges would even continue to grow! I sort of wrote them off in the same category as the hair in my eyebrows—they just stop growing when they reach a certain length lol but I guess I was wrong! They grew! Are are still growing! Check out the EXTREME close-up shots of my grey hair! lmao! I think I am going to keep my grey hair so I can continue to see if my edges are still growing hehe
The Mango serum not only worked on my edges but it definitely worked on the rest of my scalp as well. I noticed I have a new layer of fine baby hairs all over my head, similar to the ones I posted about back in June 2012. That means, the serum stimulated the follicles where I may have had hair fallen out of or where “inactive” for lack of a better word. Either way, it’s doing something making something grow! I also noticed that my new growth is very soft and my curls seem a bit looser! I even noticed growth in my kitchen in the back i.e. the hairs at the nap of my neck lol THIS is amazing because now when I brush my hair up into a bun, I don’t have these random curls wanting to fall back down. They actually stay up and in place.
I will DEFINITELY keep this in my hair growth arsenal BUT I am going to put it down for a little while because…..I will be trying the non-oil version of Bee Mine’s growth serum! (yes, I know, the obsession with Bee Mine continues…)
It’s called the Bee Sensitive Oil Free Hair Serum which is basically and oil-free alternative to their original serum. I am extremely excited about this because it is difficult for me to use oils on my scalp during the warmer summer months because my scalp is naturally oily and I get a lot of build-up so this is PERFECT for me or anyone with similar issues. It was actually created for people with dermatitis, eczema and psoriasis It retails on Bee Mine’s site at $15 for 8 oz. and only comes in the mango scent (which is yummy and juicy smelling). The ingredients are amazing and are what’s most attractive to me but then again ALL Bee Mine’s ingredients are amazing, they are 99% All natural AND organic!! I also love that it is in a spray bottle which means easy application. Oh and read the reviews on the Bee Mine site, 5 star product, AGAIN!
Product Description Bee-Sensitive ~ Oil Free serum comes to you by popular request for our family members with scalp conditions that prevents the use of oils. We’ve formulated this oil-free hair serum with love to help soothe the scalp and promote a healthy environment for optimal growth. The soothing and healing properties of organic aloe vera juice paired with select herbs can assist in alleviating the discomfort of many scalp conditions. Feel the calming and stimulating and effect of this oil-free serum and keep your hair looking beautiful and healthy. Specially created for those with dermatitis, psoriasis, eczema and other sensitive skin conditions. Also great for those wanting growth without the buildup of oil while in wigs, half wigs, braids, lace fronts, kinky twists, etc. Directions: Use daily or every other day for best results.
Like all the other hair growth remedies I have tried so far, I am going to try this for one month without using anything else on my scalp so I can see how well this product works on it’s own. The main ingredient in the oil-free serum is aloe vera juice which is known to promote hair growth as it is a natural astringent. This also means it is perfect for oily scalps. It also contains my beloved ayurvedic herbs, I don’t know exactly which ones but they are all amazing either way. And last, it contains MSM which natural sulfur, the same thing in the other Mango serum. Sooooo it’s basically a bomb combination of hair growth greatness lol
I plan on using this each time I twist my hair, probably 2-3x a week and I will check back in with you all on this in about a month!!
So a month or so ago I used henna for the first time after being afraid of it for so long lol and I LOVED how it made my hair feel and how SHINY and strong my hair felt. I think part of my self-imposed fear of henna was the color commitment because I have a dream of lightening my hair one day (like Beyonce light lol #dontjudgeme) so I have been trying to really nurture my hair to be able to do something to drastic (if I build up enough courage do something SO drastic like that) but anywho, I say that to say that I was introduced to an alternative to henna….cassia obovata!!
It’s basically henna without the color. It gives you all the conditioning benefits of henna and is sometimes referred to as neutral henna. It doesn’t give off any color but if you have blonde hair, it will accentuate your natural highlights. If you are grey, it will make your hair blonde. For dark hair, it just conditions and makes it shiny :o)
Since I was sent some packets of cassia by a very special dear friend of mine (thank you love!), I don’t have any information on where it came from, the brand, cost, etc. What I do know is the kind I used is USDA organic and of super high quality :o)
When I used henna, I mixed it with just water and a little bit of oil but THIS time, I mixed the cassia with COCONUT MILK!!! OMG!!! The moment I applied it to my hair I was like forget water! I’m using coconut milk for ALL my ayurvedic treatments from now on!! lol It makes the paste SO much creamier and easier to apply. It’s super smooth and just makes it better, for lack of better words lol. I think I also mixed in some oil (I think avacado oil or grapeseed, can’t remember which one)
I mixed the coconut oil and cassia and let it sit overnight. I guess I only did that because I did it for the henna BUT then again, I am not trying to get a dye release so I probably didn’t need to do it lol it just seemed like a nice gesture haha
Here’s the paste, I use the entire can of Foco brand coconut milk and it was thick and creamy :o) If you decide to use coconut milk, BE SURE to check the ingredients to ensure it doesn’t have sugars and added stuff in it (the ingredient listed as a preservative is fine though, you just don’t want the sweetened sugar kinds).
I applied the paste in sections and it was a BREEZE to apply. I didn’t have to tape newspaper all over my walls, floor and sink lol. It wasn’t messy to apply because of the texture, it stayed where I put it. It just felt so smooth and creamy. I know,I know, it’s weird that I’m really excited about the applying part lol Here’s how the paste looked in my hair. It’s green like henna is.
After I was done applying the paste, I sectioned my hair off, pinned the sections down and put on a plastic cap and then wrapped with with my Christmas edition saran wrap lol this time I didn’t wrap my head as tight as the last time lol I had a headache like a mug because I OD’d on the saran wrap! Good thing is that using the coconut prevented the paste from dripping, which I sometimes get when I use water/teas and oils with my ayurvedic treatments. I left the paste in for about 8 hours (applied in the afternoon and went about my day at home, rinsed out at night. I probably didn’t need to leave it in for that long but oh well).
Here’s me lookin crazy with my saran helmet!OK so here’s the thing, I didn’t take any pics of my hair after I rinsed out the cassia paste because, well, it just looked really, really bad. I now see why some naturals don’t like to use henna/cassia often because it really does loosen your curl pattern. I guess I was naive and was thinking looser curl pattern = elongated curls lol welp, I was wrong! Looser curl pattern (for me) means undefined curls that just look like a hot mess! I was sadly disappointed because I LOVE the conditioning results from the cassia and henna but after using henna 2x and cassia 1x, I really see a difference in the curl pattern.
Yes, I still use amla and I know amla kind of “reverses” henna by defining your curls but its almost like a cat and mouse situation where I feel the henna and amla just counter each other. So I need to figure out the frequency that I would continue to use cassia and henna because I don’t want to lose my curl pattern, I like when they are springy and bouncy! But then again I can’t get over the shine and cassia and henna gives me.
I haven’t really been one to mix different ayurvedic powders with eachother but I think I may start doing that, meaning, I can still use cassia/henna in small amounts AND mix it with amla, brahmi, neem, etc. and still get the conditioning benefits from the cassia/henna. I still have several boxes of the Reshma Femme henna in the different color variations which contain amla already mixed in so I plan to continue using them for the rest of the year and see if cassia/henna are something I want to continue for the long run! (Of course I will share the findings with you :o) )
What have been your experiences with cassia and henna?! What have you done about the curl loosening? TIPS PLEASE!
Ok so I just want to apologize to all the English and grammar teachers out there lol I know some of my posts may be a little painful to read because there are sometimes typos and grammatical errors. I know I should proof read more but ain’t nobody got time fa dat I try to knock these posts out a quick as possible, plus I tend to type as if I am speaking sooooo….sorry!!! lol Can’t say they will get any better but just letting you know that a) yes, I am educated lol Howard University educated in fact, I know how to spell and all dat lol :o) and b) I am aware of my typos and try to go back and fix them when I can, if I care happen to re-read a post and come across them! What it really comes down to is, you know what I am trying to say either way!!!! :oP hehe
Had to get that off my chest lol moving along….
So I tried a new ayurvedic powder! This time it is the Holy Basil also known as Tulsi! I was at my local Indian market re-upping and came across this one and figured I would give it a go. I only got one box because I wasn’t sure how well I would like it. It was my usual Hesh brand and only $1.99 so what the heck. I have seen it sold on other ayurvedic powder retailers and I have found that tulsi is one of the more inexpensive powders, I guess it’s more common I suppose.
Tulsi is a type of basil plant (it’s not the same as sweet basil which is common in italian cuisine) and is part of the mint family. It has antiseptic and antibacterial properties and is considered an anti-pollutant. It helps alleviate skin and scalp issues like dandruff, itchy scalp, ringworm, scabies, eczema. It protects and moisturizes your scalpYou can also use it on your face to treat blemishes and acne. It acts as a deep cleanser, I have seen it listed in many ayurvedic facial soaps as well :o)
It appears as more of a green color in its powder form but when I mixed it with herbal teas, it turned into more of a brown. For this mix, I used an herbal tea mixture of nettle, burdock, lemongrass and catnip (<—thanks Aja!). Also, this is one of the BEST smelling ayurvedic pastes I have ever used! It is a sweet, minty kind of scent that was very pleasant I can’t say the same for other pastes lol so that made it much easier to tolerate :o)
I applied the paste on freshly washed, damp hair this time (I normally skip the wash part and let the pastes do the washing, I think may start washing first just because lol EXCEPT with shikakai….O_O ). I section my hair in half down the middle and then section each half into 3 smaller sections.
I found this this paste was a bit difficult to apply because it was a bit gritty and didn’t distribute well. It’s definitely a thicker paste. I had to keep adding more and more water and even a conditioner (used my Trader Joe’s Tea Tree Tingle) with a lot of slip to try to make the process go a bit smoother and it still didn’t make much of a difference. I also spritzed each section to dampen it even more as I went along. Luckily, Hesh gives you a good amount of powder in each box that I had enough to cover my whole head.
After I applied it, I pinned up each section and sat under a plastic cap for about 30 mins. I couldn’t let it sit much longer because it started to run down my face and neck. Had to keep a towel around my neck lol These pics look kinda nasty but whatever, ya’ll know you look the same when you do these treatments too lol
So, as much as I love ayurveda, I am not sure I will incorporate tulsi into my regular regimen (brahmi and amla are still my favs…henna is creeping up in there but i have a few other new ones I plan on trying and sharing with you VERY soon hehehehe). Applying the pastes are a feat in itself and dealing with the tulsi just made it even more difficult, perhaps it was the crop, the brand or other factors. I know Hesh is not THE best brand but I never have any problems with any of their other powders. Maybe I will try it again from a different brand and see if it’s easier to deal with. It also did not rinse out very well either. I had to shampoo again and “wash” with conditioner several times to really get it out. A good thing is It definitely got rid of a little itchiness I had going on and helped a LOT with hair fall. Hair fall is one of the main reasons I do these treatments so maybe that is enough to give tulsi a try again…but I’m in no hurry *sigh* oh well! At least it smelled really good and I had some benefits from the teas!
Has anyone tried tulsi paste?! It’s on my “To Try” tea list lol
It’s been a long time coming. I knew I would eventually give in and FINALLY try HENNA!!! I don’t know why I hadn’t tried it yet. It seemed only natural for me to since I love ayurvedic treatments and this is like the prestige of them all lol. So, I decided to just get over my fear and DO it finally. I mean, I’ve heard about it and seen it EVERY where for years. The results I’ve seen on other people are usually amazing and no one really has anything bad to say about it (as far as the effectiveness it has for hair).
I was (am still a bit!) so intimidated by henna, I guess because it’s such a particular process, there’s so many kinds, brands, mixtures, steps, etc. etc. etc. I just got overwhelmed by it! It seemed like every person who does henna has their own process and recipe. When I get overwhelmed I just shut down and say forget it lol BUT to my luck, a PR firm sent me a package FULL of henna treatments by Reshma Femme!! I was like, this MUST be the sign to just go ahead and take that leap of faith lol It’s really silly that I am intimidated by this simple green powder lol So thanks to Reshma Femme, my fears have now been conquered! You can find this brand of henna in beauty supply stores and Sally stores nation wide which is super convenient! ***UPDATE —many people have told me that Reshma Femme Henna appeared in a recent CurlBox! If you have it, try it out!! :o)
The package from Reshma Femme had 4 varieties of their henna and 2 facial masks :o) I was so grateful! The 4 varieties are Toffee, Dark Chocolate, Playful Plum and Natural highlights. When I say varieties, I mean the henna is pre-mixed with other natural herbs like amla and indigo, to create the various colors. Lots of people mix their own herbs to create their own colors but Reshma Femme takes the guess work out and makes it easier to get a perfect proportions for color blends. Here’s the breakdown:
Natural highlights is just pure henna, strait up
Playful Plum is henna and Indigo for blackish, plum tones
Toffee is Henna, Amla, Shikakai, Bhilwa, Hibiscus, Ratan Jot
Dark Chocolate <—- I know, I still need to get the ingredients on this one!
All of the variations are 100% pure and natural and don’t contain any additive ingredients. Sadly, there are lots of henna brands out there that are not 100% natural and contain fillers but Reshma Femme is completely pure and natural so that made me feel good :o)
So what’s the hype about henna? Well, besides is being a natural way to color your hair (henna will NOT lighten your hair, only give you red highlights in its pure form and browns and blacks mixed with other herbs), it provides serious conditioning, makes your hair super shiny and thickens your strands thus making your hair stronger and healthier. It also helps cure head lice, dandruff and ring worm which is cool. Oh it also loosens your curl pattern. Some people either love or hate that part. I don’t mind it since I have SEVERE shrinkage (my hair is about 50-60% longer than it looks!) If you don’t want to loose the curl pattern, you can always reverse it by using amla which enhances curl pattern and tones down the red from the henna. The more you use henna, the deeper the color and the more the conditioning, it’s like wine, it gets better with age lol. Some people use it every week and some maybe once a month. Not sure how often I will use it though. I gotta see how I feel lol but I guess to really reap the benefits you have to use if consistently often.
OK so Moving along…I will kind of give you a play by play of my process using the pics below so you can see what everything looked like at each step :o) This is a really long kind of a long post so bear with me. Hopefully it’s informative though!
I decided to start with the plain henna, Natural Highlights HK 6A, to see how henna worked out in its purest form with no other ayurvedic herbs mixed in. I will probably try the browns next and then the plum since that will be the darkest.
Each Reshma Femme box of henna comes with a pair of gloves, a packet of oil and instructions (and of course the henna!). I wish the gloves were a bit stronger because mine definitely tore in the crevice of my fingers but luckily it was towards the end of my application so the henna wasn’t sitting on my skin long enough for it to stain them. Next time I’m going to get a hold of some latex gloves that are a bit more durable.
Here’s the henna powder. I learned that the finer it is sifted, usually means it’s of higher quality and and the most dye content. Henna used as body art is finely sifted so lots of brands that market their henna as “Body Art Quality” are typically better to use. Reshma Femme is of this quality :o)
There are a million things people use to mix their henna but I wanted to just start out simple and stick with plain ole water. I did add a few squirts of lemon juice because lemon juice helps the henna produce a better dye release if you are aiming to get more color. I also added a few drops of a mixture of essential oils just because. I read on Minimalist Beauty (who btw, has become one of my fav bloggers because she has AWESOME DIY recipes and is very thorough with her posts!) that she uses coconut milk as her base. I think I may try that next time:o) I have also seen others use tea so I may try that another time as well. Oh and I guess you’re supposed to use warm or hot water/tea and let it sit somewhere warm. I didn’t. oops…
So here’s what the henna looks like just mixed with water. It’s naturally a green color and was a bit slimy in consistency. It had a few chunks but I found that after it sat the moisture absorbed and the chunks went away. I would not recommend using a plastic container because the henna will stain it (if you care) since they are usually porous. I just used a ceramic bowl and covered it with saran wrap while it was sitting.
So I let the mixed henna sit overnight because I don’t mind the color that henna gives (the longer it sits, the more dye release). I figured hey, why not get the color while I’m at it. You don’t have to let it sit for that long (the package says for 1-3 hours). Either way, after you let it sit, you will see the red dye released as a liquidy red layer on top of the paste.***SIDEBAR— I am always AMAZED by God’s creation. How in the world did He think, “OK I’m going to make a plant that is all GREEN but when you dry it out and mill it into powder, add water to it, it will create a RED dye…oh and it conditions and colors hair!!!” How can anyone NOT be amazed by our creator and his genius ways….im just saying! :o)
Ok, so once I was ready to go, I prepped my bathroom….ok don’t laugh at me, I kinda OD’ed on the prep. I literally covered every part of my bathroom with paper i.e.the counter top, the walls, the floor, the toilet, lol I just know I am not the neatest when it comes to hair treatments so I prepared for a henna war lol And needless to say, I really only needed to cover the counter top! Go figure lol better safe than sorry cause henna stains! Oh, I was also paranoid that I would dye my forehead, ears and neck so I slapped on gobs of Vaseline as if I were about to get a relaxer lol yea, didn’t really need to do that either. And ANOTHER thing, I made sure I wore an old t-shirt so that I wouldn’t stain my shoulders…probably didn’t have to that either since the henna just wiped off easily without dying my skin lol I’m a beginner ok! :o) I was looking all kinds of crazy!! I just can’t thank my boyfriend enough for being so understanding and non-judgmental with my hair adventures lolOnce I was ready to start the application, I mixed the red dye back into the henna paste, added the EO’s and sectioned my hair into about 6 sections. Since I had no idea what I was doing, I applied the henna to dry, dirty hair. I think I was supposed to do it on clean, damp hair (the total opposite) next time lol…..see these are those particular things I was talking about with henna. I don’t know what’s right or wrong, better or worse lol I still got good results either way so maybe it’s just whatever works for you (as with all things!).
OK so I applied the paste to my hair, normally I would leave my hair in the sections but I left it out so I could take pics and show you guys. Take a looksie. It’s nice to see my hair with some length lol you can really see the layers I’m always complaining about:
peep the paper taped to my walls lol
I may need to cut the lower layers to be a bit more uniform with the bulk of my hair. It looks so sad just dangling like that lol but it’s so long, down to my bra strap…. :o(
So I sectioned my hair back up and pinned it on the crown of my head. Ok here’s where I OD’d again lol I put a plastic cap on and proceeded to wrap saran wrap around my head like 6 times lol I was paranoid the henna would drop or crumble out and get on stuff!! Needless to say, I wrapped my Christmas edition Saran wrap way too tight lol my head started to hurt a little lol I probably only needed to wrap it around once or twice but yea since I had the henna in all day (about 7 hours, the package said leave it for 1-3), I wanted to make sure I didn’t get it all over the place. Lots of people just sleep with it overnight. Given my track record, I am a wild sleeper so I am not sure how well that would work out for me lol Here’s me looking crazy in my plastic wrap turban lol The hair at my nape and my daggone sideburns are ALWAYS hard to cover with plastic caps/wraps and scarves, guess I’ll just let them be… *sigh*
When it was time to rinse, (ok don’t laugh at me again lol) I hopped in my bath tub on my hands and knees facing down and let the water from the faucet loosen up the henna and rinse most of it out. I did this because I didn’t want the water and henna splashing all over the shower and staining my shower curtain lol although this method isn’t the most comfortable, it worked! After the water was running somewhat clear, I turned the shower on and continued to rinse.
I then used a combo of my inexpensive conditioners (Trader Joe’s Tea Tree Tingle and Nature’s Gate) and sort of lathered any remaining bits of the henna out. I did this 2 times. After I rinsed the conditioner out, I followed up with Bee Mine Deep Conditioner to make sure I replenished the moisture back in my hair since henna can be drying. I let my hair dry and I noticed my scalp was kind of itchy so I jumped online and saw that Reshma Femme has a community board where people can comment and I saw that the itchiness was because I probably didn’t rinse the henna all from my scalp. Jumped BACK in the shower and washed with a shampoo bar (used my Bobeam Rhassoul Clay bar this time hehe). So I know from now on to shampoo in the rinsing out process.
Now since this is my first henna treatment, the color didn’t turn out very vibrant BUT I’ve read that it takes a few days for the color to oxidize and deepen which in fact it did.
Here’s my hair freshly rinsed. My hair was sooooooo shiny!! I didn’t notice much curl loosening but I guess that would happen over time, using henna often. I also noticed that frizziness was drastically decreased which made my twist-outs appear more defined. The henna REALLY smoothed my hair cuticle and made my hair feel thicker all after just one application. I know it’s really hard to visually see what I am talking about in the pics but I definitely could see and feel a difference. Hopefully over the course of the year as I continue to use henna (not sure how frequent) you will be able to see the color deepen in my pics.
Here’s a couple bonus pics of my hair a few days after the treatment. I could really start to see more of the red tones in certain lighting. The color reminds me of the auburn color I had about a year ago. Mostly on the tips of my hair since they are lighter. But check out the SHINE!!!! I am blown away by it! I used Oyin Handmade Whipped Pudding for the twist out below by the way….oh and if you click that link, you will see the auburn color I was referring to. I used a boxed permanent color to achieve that but it would be cool to get close to that again naturally using henna.
You can see hints of the red in the flick below :o)
I’ll keep you posted on my henna adventures! PLEASE give me your tips if you’re a henna head!
So the other week on wash day (that’s usually Saturday or Sunday for me), I used yet another ayurvedic powder, Shikakai! I used the one by Hesh and bought it from my local Indian Market for just a few bucks a box. Be sure to always check the expiration dates if you buy from a local grocer. I have seen expired products still on the shelves! You always want the freshest powders.
Shikakai is an Indian herb, originating from in the Himalayas, that is ground into a fine powder. You mix with water or tea and used to wash your hair, so it’s an alternative to shampoo. It doesn’t lather or anything though so don’t expect any of that. It is applied like any other conditioning treatment. It is awesome because it promotes growth, strengthens your roots (yes!) and since it is astringent and anti-fungal, it removes dandruff and helps stop scalp issues. It also makes your hair shiny and bouncy! It’s also great because it is pH balanced and helps detangle your hair. It also says it cools your scalp. I guess this may be handy in the summer and warm climates. I know my head gets hot often with all this hair!
Yes the paste looks like mud and yes it can get messy. BUT that’s the fun part!! :o)
Now let me tell you, this was my first time using this kind of powder and I made a HUGE mistake. So I normally don’t wash my hair prior to using ayurvedic treatments since they typically do the washing themselves. But for some reason, my genius self decided to wash AND use the Shikakai back to back! OMG!!! When I tell you that my scalp was on FIRE, I mean, it was burning!!! And to add to it…I used a shampoo bar that had peppermint!! And you know peppermint already makes your scalp tingly….WTF was I thinking!? I swear it felt like I had left a perm on my hair, it was that bad. I had to rinse it out right away! Omg….
I also didn’t realize how abrasive Shikakai is and I was rubbing it into my scalp (I normally rub the other pastes into my scalp i.e. amla, brahmi, neem). Definitely not going to do any rubbing next time lol I was like my hair better not fall out! (it didn’t thankfully lol) Moral of the story, do not wash my hair before using Shikakai (duh!). I also read that some people will pre-poo with coconut oil on their scalp and then wash with Shikakai. I also love that you can mix ayuvedic powders together to get added benefits :o)
All in all, regardless of my dummy experience, I did get great results lol with this ayurvedic paste! My hair was definitely clean, super soft and my twist-outs the following week were super bouncy and springy! It was like it refreshed my hair. It also helped reduce the shed I’d been having. I’ll admit, I slacked off on the ayurvedic treatments for a while and I definitely felt the affects of it. My hair sheds a LOT when I don’t use them. That’s why I call them miracles in a box! lol So I need to continue to do these treatments regularly, at least 2x a month. Just be sure to always rinse really, really well. I have had little flakes of grain from the powders left in my hair a few days after I wash lol It also helps to gently detangle with a comb to help dislodge any particles stuck in your kinks.
I love ayurveda. All glory to God for these gifts of the earth :o)
Ahhh…..wash days got even better lol. We all know wash days can be a looooong, tedious process BUT incorporating shampoo bars into my weekly regimen has made wash days actually fun and something I look forward too lol ok maybe I’m just weird but I love washing my hair with shampoo bars! The process, the different kinds of soaps, the suds, I dunno, it’s just fun to me lol I wish I could wash my hair more often just so I can use the bars more haha
So my latest bar I went ahead and indulged in is from my beloved folks over at Henna Sooq. I bought the full sized (4.25 oz) Soapnut Shampoo Bar for $7 and it is by far my fav shampoo bar to date! Check this post and this post for other bars I have tried recently.
First of all, the bar looks like a giant cookies and cream bar lol and smells like yummy peppermint! In addition to my love of coconut, I reeeeeeallly love anything with peppermint. I don’t know why I don’t have more products with peppermint in it :o( The peppermint does wonders for the scalp and leaves that signature clean, tingly feeling. Nice and cool and soothing. That was actually the main reason why I bought this bar hehe
Our Soapnut Shampoo bar is extra deep cleansing, and clarifies your hair. You’ll hair will feel refreshed, and ready for your ayurvedic hair treatments. You’ll love our shampoo bars because:
they’re extra rich, and moisturizing
100% pure essential oils are used
No artificial, or synthetic scents
These body bars will not strip the natural oils from your body
This particular shampoo bar cleanses REALLY well because of the soapnut which is also known as aritha or reetha, which is most often used in ayurvedic regimens. It’s a natural deep cleanser and helps balance the oil level in your hair. My thing is making sure my scalp is squeaky clean so the soapnut mixed with the peppermint EO works wonders on my scalp. My hair is soft, never dried out and my scalp is happy. It’s definitely a cleanser I could use weekly because it is not stripping and contains castor oil. So really, I am not losing any oils in my hair, rather replenishing and balancing it with clean oils. I also looooove that is contains rosemary EO because that is another phenomenal ingredient for a healthy scalp. It helps with hair growth (check out this post on Essential Oils for more info on my love for EO’s).
Another reason I really love this particular bar is because it is not the usual dark brown (due to the color of whatever ingredients are in the bar) so it rinses out clearer a lot faster than other bars. This means less time in the shower which is always good.
This bar is literally the PERFECT blend of ingredients. I am in LOVE!! Henna Sooq does it yet again! Oh and I also bought the Sweet Honey bar from Henna Sooq so I will review that one when I give it a whirl :o)
— Although I am forever a Henna Sooq and Bobeam fan, I want to start trying other shampoo bars so if you know of any other companies that have really good bars, leave a comment and let me know! I think I am going to try Chagrin Valley bars next! Which one should I try??