Saturday, January 16, 2010

The Mixtress is In...

It's henna time! I always get excited when it's time to put henna in my hair. I've done this quite a few times now with different mixes. I've done a henna and indigo combo, a henna mixed with lemon juice, henna mixed with green tea, and tonight I'm going to try a new mix. I've always noticed that when I rinse my hair from henna and do a deep conditioning my hair feels stiff and crunchy. Well since lemon juice can be very drying (it's highly acidic) I decided to try adding a little something to add moisture. So I've decided to mix the henna with lemon juice (until it looks like pudding) and then add 1/4 cup of safflower oil and mixed extra well. I'm going to let it sit over night and apply when I wake in the morning. I have already co washed my hair in prep for the treatment.

So why safflower oil? Because, safflower oil is an emollient. What is an emollient? An emollient is wax like, lubricating, thickening ingredient that can prevent water loss and have a softening and smoothing effect on skin and hair. So if lemon juice is drying on the hair then the emollient will help prevent the water loss and help soften and smooth the hair. Now why am I mixing the henna with lemon juice? The acidity level of the lemon juice helps release the dye of the henna which gives the coppery red coloring when applied to the skin. The mixture needs to set over night or for about 4-5 hours to get proper dye release. The dye from the henna adds a unique coloring quality to the hair. The greatest thing about it is that it's all natural, hypoallergenic, and the best part of two heads will look the same after a henna treatment. For women with black hair sometimes the hair will look darker and in some it will impart a red/auburn tint to it (sort of like taking a red crayon and coloring on black construction paper). For some the henna dye is clearly visible, where as others you'll only be able to see it in certain lighting (like the sun).

So why use henna in the first place? Henna actually thickens the hair strand and helps to strengthen the hair. So with repeated use the hair becomes thicker and stronger. Henna can also help with hair growth. Because the hair is stronger there is less breakage. In natural African American kinky curly hair henna can also help loosen the curl pattern which I love. Henna is one of my favorite things to use on my hair as I absolutely love it. My hair has changed dramatically due to it.

So tomorrow after leaving henna on for about 4 hours I will do a 1 hour deep conditioning treatment with Jessicurl's Weekly Deep Treatment, which is rich in yummy ingredients for hair. I am super excited to see how this will turn out. Oh and by the way, my hair is still in twists and I will be applying the henna with the twists in my hair. I may have to re twist after but we'll see. I will post my results tomorrow night!