How to Get Natural Red Hair with Henna

19th Jul 2014 / By Guest Contributor


You’ve probably seen henna tattoos before, but did you know you can dye your hair with henna, too? Using this all-natural dye will give your hair a summery red glow without frying your hair. Summer is the perfect time to make a bold change. From fire red to deep chestnut, you can use henna to dye your hair a variety of natural-looking reds. Even if you have dark brown or black hair, henna can give your locks a pretty reddish hue.

Henna comes from a plant that leaves a reddish brown stain on skin or hair, and using henna as a natural dye is a tradition that goes back more than 5,000 years. Henna tattoos are still a huge part of Indian and Pakistani weddings.

Why you should use henna:

  • Henna is all natural.
  • Henna is cheap—the kind I use is $5 a box! Much better than $80-$100 at the salon.
  • It fades slowly over time, so you won’t have jarring root grow out.
  • Instead of frying your hair (like chemical dyes) henna conditions it, leaving it soft and healthy.
  • It covers gray hair.
  • It’s safe to use while pregnant.
  • The color always looks natural. With chemical dyes, the red can turn out too purple or too orange, but Henna gives you a “natural redhead” look.
  • Henna preserves your natural highlights.
  • You can do henna dye at home with a friend.

How to dye your hair with henna:

I have been dying my hair with henna for about six months, and the easiest way to do it is to pick up a box of henna hair dye. You can usually get these at natural foods stores like Whole Foods or Sprout. You can also buy boxed henna dye online.

Most henna dyes will come as a powder that you mix with boiling water yourself. Follow the instructions in the box carefully. The henna powder will become thick and muddy, so you may need a friend to help you apply it. Work the dye evenly through your hair, wrap your hair up in plastic wrap and let it sit for about an hour, depending on how strong you want the color to be. Rinse your hair and use conditioner (no shampoo for at least 24 hours) to remove any grit left behind. Voila! You now have stunning, natural-looking red hair.

If you’ve always wondered what it would be like to be a redhead, henna really is the cheapest, most risk-free way to test it out. Plus it will leave your hair silky smooth and glowing. For the perfect summer hair treatment, go red with henna!

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