Henna / Mehndi (Lawsonia inermis) is a very common phrase in any Indian household. For those who don’t know for sure what exactly henna is (or hearing it for the first time), allow us to introduce it to you.
What is Henna / Mehndi?
It’s a type of flowering plant often processed into powder or paste. When applied, henna colors the area in orangish-brown, maroon or sometimes black, depending on the initial quality of the henna leaves. Due to its coloring properties, henna is widely used for two mainstream purposes; to make a temporary art form on the body as well as using it as a natural hair dye.
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Applications of Henna/ Mehndi
1. Henna as art form : This practice goes back to olden times. Henna has always been applied on the hands and feet of the bride and the bridegroom during marriage. The sole purpose of applying henna was to cool down the body. Our body radiates heat through the palms and feet. So a coolant applied on these areas would do wonders. According to the Indian tradition, henna is also believed to contain blessing, making it another reason for it to be used during marriages or any special occasions and celebrations. The best part of all? Henna in an art form makes the hands and feet look pretty without causing any side effects to your skin!
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2. Henna as a cosmetic hair dye : The main reason why people go for henna as a cosmetic dye is because it is completely natural and chemical-free. In fact, the chances of it harming your hair is nullified. Some adults use henna to hide graying hair too! What’s more? Applying henna regularly on black hair will give it a natural shine and tint it in an intense maroon shade which will be usually visible under the sunlight.
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What are the things your should know before applying Henna to Hair?
- Make sure to wash your hair properly.
- Henna generates different results on different hair colors. For instance, when used on white hair, the initial color of henna, which is usually orangish-brown, will be attained.
- For dry hair, add some oil into the mixture before applying it to the hair. Alternative;y, you may oil your hair prior to the application of henna. But do not overdo it, as the henna will not be able to coat your hair wholly.
- Since henna is a non-cosmetic product, we suggest you to wash it off with plain water once it dries. In case of any oil mixture, then you may shampoo your hair and condition as usual.
- Some people do not fancy the smell that henna leaves behind. To rid the smell, mix some cinnamon, ginger or black seed powder to the henna mixture. Ensure that your hair is not allergic to any of these beforehand.
- It is suggested that you use a hair dyeing brush to apply the henna mixture. This will prevent your fingers from getting colored.
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Words from Writer
Personally, I have greasy hair. I have to shampoo it every alternate day to keep my hair grease-free. Recently I attempted a small experiment with my hair which outcome was great. Thus, I would like to share this remedy with all of you. But bear in mind that this remedy is exclusive for only greasy hair .
Here is what I did:
I mixed henna with plain water and applied it on my scalp ONLY. This remedy concentrates only on the scalp area, hence the length of your hair will not make any difference to it. Just ensure that the paste is enough to cover just your scalp area.
- Thoroughly washed hair.
- Damp hair (A slight moisture helps in soaking the ingredients better)
Also read: How to Get Rid of Dry Scalp?
Steps to Apply Henna on Hair
- Mix the henna well with water in a bowl.
- Use a brush/wear plastic gloves to apply the mixture.
- Part your hair to three sections.
- Starting from one part, apply only on the scalp.
- Then apply the mixture right till the end.
- Repeat the same process over and over again to the other parts till you have covered your entire scalp and hair.
- Leave it on for 3-4 hours.
- Wash off with plain water.
- If you have forgotten to use any of the hacks to get rid of the smell, do not worry. The smell will vanish within 24 hours on its own. However, do not use any external chemicals to mask the odor.
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It has been 15 days now since I experimented with this treatment. I do not have to shampoo my hair as frequently as I used to anymore. In fact, I have shampooed my hair only 3-4 times ever since the treatment. I can manage my hair pretty well up to five days without shampooing. It left my hair looking great too!
Should you have greasy hair, try out this remedy and share its results with us. Do not hesitate to drop a comment in case of queries or information sharing.
Note to Readers
As I were writing this article, I came across colored henna/mehndi in a lot of stores. Henna in its natural form is known to be used for the past 6,000 years. The commercialized ones however, or colored henna is no good at all, not for hair at least! Colored henna contain strong chemicals and dye. For instance, the color of black henna comes from a black dye know as para-phenylenediamine (PPD).
As good as the designs of colored henna look on your hand, it is most likely to cause harm to your skin when applied frequently. Likewise, it can also damage your hair. Dyed hennas could probably result in dryness or frizzy hair. In case of any side effects after application, immediately see a doctor.
Disclaimer : Please consult a expert before dyeing your hair with mehndi.