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Lexie
March 21st, 2008, 11:49 AM
These experiments were done between October and November of 2006 and were posted on H4H, but I decided I'd like to repost them here.


Click on thumbnails for bigger pictures.

Even if the results from an experiment look exactly like what you want to achieve, they were done on white hair. If covering gray/white is your concern, then you're probably in luck. But otherwise, your results could differ quite a bit using the same method. Plus we must cater for differences in climate, timing, and ingredients. So please remember to test before jumping in. It's easy to color. It's not as easy to go back.

For those who don't know, or those who want a refresher, this is what unadulterated mohair looks like.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006101901-mohair-thumb.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006101901-mohair.jpg)


First Experiment

So, this won't be over for a week really. But my goodness, the information I got from it so far is delicious. I wanted to see what would happen if hair was colored with henna and water only without much heat.

So, in a plastic bag, I mixed 1t. of henna with 1 1/2t. of cold, filtered water.

Then I grabbed some mohair, worked it into a fairly thick strand, washed it in cold, filtered water and baking soda, rinsed in more cold, filtered water, squeezed the excess water from it, and put it in the bag.

I sealed the bag, making sure there was no air in it, smooshed the paste into the strand as well as I could, then I placed the bag on a sheet of Bounty. Folded that so the bag was in the middle of about 6 layers of it. Then I searched for a place to keep it while it set. Unfortunately, one place was barely warm, and the other was too warm. So I opted for the barely warm place, which was on top of the PC's system unit. My hands were cold, and touching it, I didn't feel a whole lot of relief, but I didn't want too much heat in the experiment. So I just hoped for the best.

2 hours later, I opened up the Bounty sheet and found...dye release. I was completely shocked because the paste was lukewarm at best. I tried to get a glimpse of the strand through the bag and saw orange. Nice... I should have checked for dye release sooner. I just thought with no acid, no terp, and almost no heat at all...well, I just didn't expect much.

So I set it back on the system unit as I had done before and left it there for another 11 hours, for a total of 13 hours.

As I was rinsing the strand, I thought, holy crepe, that's intensely orange-red. The color is beautiful. I don't think the curl has been relaxed by much, but the hair is definitely less fluffy. Mohair is very soft to begin with, so not much of a change there.

Now I'm going to give it a week to fully oxidize. I did not use conditioner or shampoo on it. I don't plan to until the week is up, at which point I'll take before and after pictures in case of any change in the color.

So this is after rinsing, 3 days, and 7 days later.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006101902-henna-water-day01-thumb.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006101902-henna-water-day01.jpg) http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102201-henna-water-day03-thumb.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102201-henna-water-day03.jpg) http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102601-henna-water-day07-thumb.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102601-henna-water-day07.jpg)

Doesn't look to me like it's fading. It mellowed so it's no longer scary-intense, but it's basically the same color. I'm beginning to re-think my hennaing method.


Second Experiment

So I really wanted to try the henna+indigo gloss to see what one would get on gray/white hair with it.

I grabbed some more mohair. Quite a bit really. I ended up with a pretty, puffy strand of hair.

I mixed 1/8t. henna and 1/8t. indigo in 1 1/2t. conditioner in a plastic bag.

I washed the mohair in lukewarm, filtered water and baking soda. Then I rinsed it in more lukewarm, filtered water, squeezed out the excess water, and placed it in the plastic bag. Then I worked as much of the gloss mix into the hair as possible.

I rolled the bag all the way down so it wasn't keeping air in or out. I placed the bag on a sheet of Bounty which was only folded once. Then I put this on a hot plate that was created to keep drinks warm, but not hot. (I was trying to simulate the warmth from someone's head. The strand eventually got warm--warmer than lukewarm, but nowhere near hot.)

I counted 30 minutes from the moment I was sure the gloss was completely coating the hair. Then I rinsed immediately.

The strand is most definitely blond, though not the most golden one. It's also not the lightest blond. It far exceeded my expectations.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006101903-henna-indigo-gloss-thumb.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006101903-henna-indigo-gloss.jpg)


And I thought it might be interesting for everyone to see the contrast between the blond strand and my jet black hair.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006101904-black-blond-contrast-thu.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006101904-black-blond-contrast.jpg)


Third Experiment

So my goal is to see what happens with a 1:2 henna:indigo gloss. That's right. I'm going for brown, as the 1:2 ratio normally gives, but a lighter one. Preferably light brown. And preferably without red. If this ratio doesn't do it for me, I'll find one that does and report all results here.

I mixed 1/8t. henna and 1/4t. indigo with 1 1/2t. conditioner in a plastic bag.

I gathered mohair as usual, washed it with cold, filtered water and baking soda, then rinsed it again with lukewarm filtered water. (I didn't try to get any specific temperature. It just happened, and I didn't complain. Just thought I should mention every little factor in case anyone wonders or it's taken into consideration for some reason.)

Then I put the strand in the bag, sealed as much air out as possible, and smooshed the gloss mix into it as well as I could. Then I put the bag in a sheet of Bounty, and folded it so the bag was between 8 layers of it.

I placed it on the hot plate till it became fairly warm--more than lukewarm, but far from hot--and then I put it on the PC's system unit which is warmer than the night before though not very warm. It's also warmer than lukewarm, but just barely cooler than the bag.

I left it for 4 hours. I contemplated leaving it overnight, but I'm trying to think of what might be preferable to people who actually end up putting this on their head. Since I had such lovely timing on dye release with the water-only test, I think 4 hours should allow a pretty good henna stain and the best indigo stain possible through a gloss.

I rinsed the strand, and sadly, the color was blond. Well, not so sad really, but I didn't achieve my goal.

I did notice something though. In comparing the two blond strands, I noticed that they're not that much different in shade, but the strand from #3 is more golden than #2. It's also better conditioned and less frizzy. In fact, the waves are much better defined on #3. #2 looks as puffy as it did before the gloss.

So again, I draw the conclusion that the longer you henna, the better the conditioning effects. Any blonds out there who want to go for the full treatment without going red or beyond, this is your best bet.

So anyway, here's the pretty, blond strand.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102001-henna-indigo-gloss-02-th.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102001-henna-indigo-gloss-02.jpg)


And this is the comparison shot for experiment 2 and 3.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102002-gloss-comparisons-01-thu.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102002-gloss-comparisons-01.jpg)

Lexie
March 21st, 2008, 11:51 AM
Fourth Experiment

So though my current goal is light brown, I don't expect this experiment to give that color. What I'm basically doing is finding out what I'm working with. I'm using the same ratio of powder as I did in the last experiment--1:2 henna:indigo--but I'm not using anything to stretch it. Therefore, I'm using enough powders to cover the strand of mohair.

So I gathered, secured, then washed my mohair using cold, filtered water and baking soda. Then I rinsed it with cold, filtered water, and set it on a sheet of Bounty, out of my way.

Then I mixed 1/4t. henna and 1/2t. indigo in a plastic bag, added 1 1/2t. cold, filtered water and 1/8t. ACV.

Yes, I'm using acid. Why? I believe most of the people who used the 1:1 henna:indigo mix to get golden brown in 30 minutes mentioned that it faded. Maybe it was the fact that the water was boiling hot when added to the powders--thereby changing the structure of the dye or how it moves. Or maybe it was the lack of acid. Currently, I'm thinking it was the lack of acid, my husband thinks it could be both. So I want to put that to the test. This may not be the last of such testing.

Anyway, I put the still wet--not dripping wet--strand into the bag, sealed it, and smooshed the mix into it. Then I put it on a sheet of Bounty, which I folded so it was between 8 layers of it. I put this on the hot plate until it was fairly warm--more than lukewarm, nowhere near hot. Lastly, I put it on the PC's system unit, which is about the same temperature as the bag right now.

I left this for 4 hours, rinsed, and the strand is very...green. I was hoping I could have avoided having to wait for oxidization, but apparently not. There are some parts that aren't so green, and the brown seems lighter than I expected, so hopefully, this will turn out really well.

So here it is after rinsing and on the third day after.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102003-henna-indigo-ACV-day01-t.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102003-henna-indigo-ACV-day01.jpg) http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102301-henna-indigo-ACV-day03-t.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102301-henna-indigo-ACV-day03.jpg)

Though it's looking better, I don't think it turned out well. And I'm thinking indigo really does mute henna. At least it was still a learning experience. Please don't try this one, ever.


Fifth Experiment

So, since my last experiment was a failure, I'm going to try a new approach. The same ratio, but in a 2-step method. I was inspired by the ladies whose gray/white hair just refused to hold the color from the 1-step. And I figure the reason you get black with henna then indigo is because of the high dye saturation. And then someone mentioned using henna, then indigo+amla. I already feel amla strips henna, so I consider that to be using half as much henna (if so much), and then the indigo is diluted by amla. So I'm keeping the 1:2 henna:indigo ratio, but using cassia to help make it a 2-step method.

So I worked some mohair into a strand, secured it, and washed it in lukewarm, filtered water and baking soda. Then I rinsed it in cold, filtered water and set it on a sheet of Bounty.

Then I put 1/4t. henna and 1/2t. cassia in a plastic bag and added 1 1/2t. cold, filtered water to it. I mixed that well, then put the still wet strand into the bag, and sealed it.

I put the bag on a sheet of Bounty, then folded it so the bag was between 8 layers of it. I put that on the PC's system unit which was slightly warmer than lukewarm.

I checked it after 45 minutes. The bag was lukewarm, and I noticed dye release. so I left it for 3 more hours, for a total of 3 hours and 45 minutes. Then I rinsed it well in lukewarm, filtered water, and set it aside on a sheet of Bounty.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102301-henna-cassia-thumb.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102301-henna-cassia.jpg)


Then I put 1/2t. indigo and 1/4t. cassia in a plastic bag, added 1 1/2t. lukewarm, filtered water, and mixed it well. Then I put the still wet strand in the bag, sealed it, and put it back in the folded sheet of Bounty, back on the PC's system unit for 3 hours.

I rinsed the strand in lukewarm, filtered water. It had a little yellow-green cast at first, but it's oxidizing quickly. There's still some green, but I'm certain that will be gone within the first couple days.

So here it is.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102302-henna-cassia-indigo-thum.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102302-henna-cassia-indigo.jpg)

And here it's compared to the blond strand from experiment #3.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102303-brown-blond-contrast-thu.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102303-brown-blond-contrast.jpg)

And finally, here it is next to my jet black hair.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102304-brown-black-contrast-thu.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102304-brown-black-contrast.jpg)


Sixth Experiment

So, I realized that I'd forgotten two very important things I wanted to try. First, I wanted to test the addition of oil to the henna paste.

So I grabbed some mohair, worked it into a strand, secured it, and set it aside.

Then I got a plastic bag and mixed 1t. henna with 2t. cold, filtered water. Then I added 1/8t. coconut oil. I chose this amount because this is the ratio I use in my own hair--1/8 as much oil as henna powder. So anyway, I mixed it well again, and I must say the consistency of the henna was just lovely and silken at this point.

So I washed the strand with cold, filtered water and baking soda, rinsed it in cold, filtered water, squeezed out most of the excess water, and put it in the bag. I then sealed the bag and worked the paste into the strand.

I put the bag between 8 layers of a folded sheet of Bounty, and set it on the PC's system unit (which is still just barely warmer than lukewarm).

I left it for 6 hours, then rinsed it. The color looks like that of the strand from the first experiment. I see absolutely no difference.

So I conclude that coconut oil, at least in this ratio, has no effect on dye uptake.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102602-henna-coconutoil-day01-t.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102602-henna-coconutoil-day01.jpg)

Lexie
March 21st, 2008, 11:52 AM
Seventh Experiment

So the second thing that I realized I had to try was terping. Now, I know that it's been said that it has no effect on the resulting color, but I just have to see it for myself. I realized recently that I was finally able to get a stain on my skin (and scalp) by terping heavily. I've used tea tree EO for many months, and I've increased the amount that I use over this time. But it was only when I started adding about 1 drop per teaspoon of henna powder that I noticed my forehead, my legs, and other parts of my body were actually staining. So now for the test.

I worked some mohair into a strand, secured it, and set it aside.

Then I mixed 1t. henna and 2t. water in a plastic bag. I added 1 drop of tea tree EO, and mixed it in as well as I could.

Then I washed the strand with cold, filtered water and baking soda, rinsed it in cold, filtered water, squeezed most of the excess water out of it, and placed it in the bag. I then sealed the bag and smooshed the paste into it as well as I could.

I put the bag between 8 layers of a folded sheet of Bounty. Then I put it on the PC's system unit.

So I rinsed it after 6 hours, and this strand turned out exactly the color of the strand in the first experiment.

In conclusion, terping more than likely has no effect on the henna stain on hair.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102603-henna-teatreeEO-day01-th.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102603-henna-teatreeEO-day01.jpg)

And here's a comparison of experiments 1, 6, and 7.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102604-ex01-ex06-ex07-contrast-.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006102604-ex01-ex06-ex07-contrast.jpg)


Eighth Experiment

My goal is to achieve dark brown, definitely not black, using a 2-step method.

So I got 2 strands of mohair secured.

I mixed 1t. henna with 2t. cold, filtered water in a plastic bag.

I washed the mohair with cold, filtered water and baking soda. Rinsed with more cold, filtered water, squeezed out the excess, and put it in the bag. I then sealed the bag and placed it between 8 layers of a folded sheet of Bounty on the PC's system unit.

I let this sit for 4 1/2 hours. Both strands looked exactly like the one from experiment #1. One strand was a bit smaller than the other.

So I mixed 3/4t. indigo with 2t. lukewarm, filtered water in a plastic bag. I put the smaller of the 2 strands into this bag, and put it back into the folded sheet of Bounty for 20 minutes.

The resulting color as I was washing it looked light to medium reddish brown. I set it aside to dry, and it began to look greenish. I tried washing it again, and it was back to the reddish brown color, but as it began to dry, it was back to greenish, so it probably just needs to oxidize. I wasn't able to take pictures right away, but I got them the next morning--16-20 hours later.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006110301-henna-indigo-thumb.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006110301-henna-indigo.jpg)

Anyway, I mixed 1/2t. indigo and 1/2t. cassia with 2t. lukewarm, filtered water in a plastic bag. Then I added the second strand to it and placed it back into the folded sheet of Bounty on the system unit for 3 hours.

As I rinsed this strand, it seemed a little darker than the first, but also more green. Both strands are less green. And now they look very similar in color, though the second is just a bit darker.

http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006110302-henna-indigo-gloss-thumb.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006110302-henna-indigo-gloss.jpg) http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006110303-henna-indigo-contrast-th.jpg (http://i5.photobucket.com/albums/y185/larolsen/2006110303-henna-indigo-contrast.jpg)

So they're not as dark as I had hoped. Maybe 1:2 cassia:indigo would be better. Of course, I'm sure the results would be different if you have a buildup of henna. Also depending on your natural color. But if you have gray/white hair, you won't get dark brown from this. If your hair is blond, you might.

Lexie
March 21st, 2008, 11:55 AM
So anyway, I'm not currently experimenting and I can't make any definite plans to, but I would like to again someday when I have the time and money for it. I hope others will post their past and present experiments as well so they can offer even more insight into the plant dyes we use.

Elfling
March 21st, 2008, 12:52 PM
Yes! The Lexie experiments.

zift
March 21st, 2008, 01:28 PM
Wow amazing documentation Lexie,however I know my hair will look black where the white mohair turned green because it'd dark brown.

Nightshade
March 21st, 2008, 01:52 PM
Thanks for getting these up, Lexie! I'll try to get some of my stuff up, and I hope Iris gets hers up as well.

Once we come to come solid conclusions about things, I'd like to add a Henna Myths section to the henna article. Just before LHC crashed I had tested honey in henna and found that an increasing amount of honey really diminished the amount of dye release and dye uptake. There was some conjecture on if it was the viscosity of the honey, or the honey itself, so I'd like to repeat the experiment with molassas (which I have) to see how that shakes out.

Blueglass
March 21st, 2008, 02:31 PM
Lizzie your experiments are impressive.

Lexie
March 21st, 2008, 05:30 PM
Thank you, guys. :) Zift, I'm sure it would. My hair is too dark to bother with indigo and I like my few grays being orange. :D

Celebrian
March 21st, 2008, 06:55 PM
Thanks for getting these up, Lexie! I'll try to get some of my stuff up, and I hope Iris gets hers up as well.

Once we come to come solid conclusions about things, I'd like to add a Henna Myths section to the henna article. Just before LHC crashed I had tested honey in henna and found that an increasing amount of honey really diminished the amount of dye release and dye uptake. There was some conjecture on if it was the viscosity of the honey, or the honey itself, so I'd like to repeat the experiment with molassas (which I have) to see how that shakes out.

Didn't we already have one up and running before LHC went down? And we discussed Amla + Henna as well (among other things)... Can't remember now what conclusions were, but I think we decided that Amla compromised Henna uptake, rather than cooling or darkening it - producing an overall lightening effect. But that depended on the point at which the two were mixed (I think). :rolleyes:

iris
March 22nd, 2008, 04:31 AM
Cool that you got those up, Lexie, - I always found it hard to find your experiments on h4h, the search function in their software is just not very good.

I want to get my experiments back up, the only problem is, I don't have a back-up. So I'm praying for the old LHC stuff to be put up in the archives at some point. I do have the pictures for the experiments, but all the details are only stored in the old LHC material.

Iris

Lexie
March 22nd, 2008, 10:40 AM
Damn, that sucks. I'm lucky that I did have the link to it at H4H, otherwise I would have lost it. I did plan to email it to myself just in case. I'll probably do that today. It really was a pain to find initially.

Nightshade
March 26th, 2008, 12:58 PM
To answer the question of does henna from a different region/crop/etc dye a significantly different hue I set out to compare 8 different powders under circumstances as controlled as I could make them. I will try to be as clear a humanly possibly about my methodologies.


The Setup:
Much to my surprise setting all this up took me over an hour from “go” until all the test locks were safely tucked away in their respective cups. Some important notes on setup:
·Mohair locks were selected to be as close to equal thickness as I could make them. Each lock was washed, rinsed, and set aside.
·Each henna test cup was made from white ceramic. To each cup I added 3tsp of henna.
·Then 3 TB of liquid was added to each cup. The liquid was 2c of distilled water and ˝ c of bottled lemon juice. To encourage dye release I microwaved the distilled water, then added the lemon juice. The temperature of the liquid when it was added to the henna was 130◦ F.
·Henna was mixed with a spatula so no metal ever contacted any of the test batches.
·2 locks of mohair were immediately added to the cups, still damp, and then smooshed about with a spatula and covered with saran wrap. The temperature in the room they sat was 77◦ F. One lock was extracted after 2 hours, another at 4. This was just to examine a dye release rate. A final test lock was added into the mix at the 4.5 hour mark and left to sit for 10 hours.
·All locks were rinsed with only water, blotted, and left to air dry.


Supposed Ideal Dye Release Times
Jamila- Has the longest dye release time. After mixing, allow 12 hours for dye release. Final
Yemeni- Requires 8-12 hours for dye release. .
Moroccan- Has the fastest dye release. After being mixed it only need to sit for 2-4 hours for dye release.
Indian- Needs to sit for 8-10 hours for dye release. Mixed Batch- ?
50/50- ? The Powders & Test Batches
It was very interesting to see the differences in the color of the powders themselves The Indian powders (generally speaking) seemed quite green, the Yemen powders more brown, the Jamila powders more yellow-green hued, and the Moroccan henna was a green similar to that of the Indian hennas. Just for fun I took all the powders in the first photo and blended a batch with those. I also did a half henna, half alma mix for kicks. Here are the batches I made:
H4H Indian- Standard BAQ Henna for Hair sells. From Rajasthan, India. 2006 crop.
HS Indian 1- Henna Sooq Indian Henna, supplier one. From Rajasthan, India. 2006 crop.
HS Indian 2- Henna Sooq Indian Henna, supplier two. From Rajasthan, India. 2006 crop.
H4H Yemen- Henna for Hair Yemen. Originates from Yemen. Spring 2006 crop.
HS Yemeni- Henna Sooq Yemeni. Originates from Sana’a, Yemen. Summer 2006 crop.
HS Jamila- Henna Sooq Jamila. Originates from Pakistan. Summer 2006 crop.
HS Jamila Boxed- Sample from Henna Sooq. Box cover looks like this. Summer 2006 crop.
HS Moroccan- Henna Sooq Moroccan henna. Originates from the western Sahara of Morocco. Summer 2006 crop.
Mixed Batch- I took all the powders in the intial photo and dumped them together.
Half Henna & Half Amla- A combination of 50% of the mixed batch henna powders and 50% amla.http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=1142&pictureid=15388





1 Hour Investigation
After and hour of dye release I went and inspected the baths to see what I could see:
H4H Indian- Dark muddy brown top layer, green underneath, very slight reddish liquid film on top
HS Indian 1- Medium muddy brown top layer, green underneath, very slight reddish liquid film on top
HS Indian 2- Dark muddy brown top layer, green underneath, no orange liquid visible
H4H Yemen- Lighter muddy brown top layer, green underneath, very small puddles of orange liquid
HS Yemeni- Reddish brown top layer, many reddish orange puddles of liquid on top, though the under layer was more greenish it had a reddish brown cast to it as well
HS Jamila- Reddish brown top layer, many reddish orange puddles of liquid on top, though the under layer was more greenish it had a faint reddish brown cast to it as well
HS Jamila Boxed- Lighter muddy brown top layer, green underneath, very small puddles of orange liquid
HS Moroccan- Not a lot of color change, top layer a slightly darker brown color, underneath green, no visible puddles of orange.
Mixed Batch- Medium brown on top, visible orange puddles, green underneath. Sort of a blend of all the features above, as you’d expect.
Half Henna & Half Amla- Pale gray green. No signs of dye release 2 Hour Mark, first strands extracted.
Two hours after they were left to sit I pulled out the first lock of mohair, rinsed it with mohair, blotted it, and left it to dry. Despite the information stating that they all have very different dye release times, there was very little significant difference, save for the half and half mix, which was quite a bit lighter. Most of the other color variations seems to be from the changes in density in the different locks, the thinner ones appear lighter and the ones where the hairs stayed closer together look darker. At this point all the henna muds look a lot a like, though the yemen does seem a bit more orange than brown than the rest, but not by much.
http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=1142&pictureid=15390

4 Hour Mark, second strands extracted.
Four hours after they were left to sit I pulled out the remaining lock of mohair, rinsed it with mohair, blotted it, and left it to dry. Again there was very little difference save for the half and half mix. All the (slight) color variations seem to have more to do with the density of the mohair in various locks than anything. Having seen these in different types of lighting, I can honestly say that if you mixed these up the only one you’d be picking out with any certainty was the 50%/50% one. Add to the fact that henna works with your natural hair color, sort of as a transparent layer, and whatever minute differences are apparent so far I don’t think are going to mean much at all in application. All the henna muds look a lot like they did at the 2 hour mark. The last strands just got added (so after 4 hours of dye release) and are going to soak for 10 hours. I’ll have the results of that tomorrow :)
http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=1142&pictureid=15392


10 Hour Soak, final strands extracted.
Good morning :) The final strands are out and… there’s no real difference here either (except for the 50%/50% mix, obviously. Here’s the pic, and I’ll check in a few days to see if oxidization changes anything, but really, at this point I’m pretty doubtful it will. On a side note, there was no real difference in rinsing. All the powders I used were well sifted and came out easily.
http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=1142&pictureid=15391

Nightshade
March 26th, 2008, 12:59 PM
Oxidized
Here are the same strands after oxidizing. All the strands deepened to the same color, except for the half-henna, half alma. The HS Moroccan may have been a bit lighter, and more coppery, but the difference was almost indiscernible.

http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=1142&pictureid=15389




Final Conclusion
Factors such as what temperature the mix is mixed at, dye release time, dye release location temperature, how long the mix is left on the hair, and other mix components affect the color of henna to a much greater degree than which henna powder is used, assuming that the henna powder is BAQ and from a reputable supplier.

Elfling
March 26th, 2008, 09:40 PM
Wow, that was thorough. Nice work!

Nightshade
March 27th, 2008, 08:21 AM
Wow, that was thorough. Nice work!

Thanks! You should have seen my kitchen when it was done. Henna-spattered cups everywhere :o

Lexie
March 27th, 2008, 08:45 AM
I always loved that experiment. I personally went between unmarked BAQ (from Mehandi and Castle Art) and Jamila in my first year of hennaing and I never noticed any difference in color.

Nightshade
March 27th, 2008, 08:56 AM
I still want to do a "ghetto henna" test that's similar, with a bunch of the cheap health-food store brands like Light Mountain and Rainbow.

I've got the crystalized indigo stuff here too, so I'll try to get those up soon as well, along with some of the other strand tests :)

Velouria
March 27th, 2008, 11:33 AM
[quote=Nightshade;34848]Oxidized
Here are the same strands after oxidizing. All the strands deepened to the same color, except for the half-henna, half alma. The HS Moroccan may have been a bit lighter, and more coppery, but the difference was almost indiscernible.

http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HennaOxidized.jpg




*********************************************
I was wondering which test strand batch the above was.....2 hr., 4hr., or 10 hr.? Such a deep red for white mohair to achieve!!

Nightshade
March 27th, 2008, 11:44 AM
That's the 10 hour soak after 4.5 hours of dye release batch :) And that is an insanely dark color considering the mohair was white to start :bigeyes:

Nightshade
April 4th, 2008, 01:14 PM
Based on some anecdotal evidence, the idea that honey can either prevent the release of dye in henna, or the uptake of lawsone into the hair has been proposed. This experiment sets out to tackle that.

The Setup:
Not nearly so bad as the Henna/Crop Region Powder Comparison Tests…
Mohair locks were selected to be as close to equal thickness as I could make them. Each lock was washed, rinsed, and set aside.
Each henna test cup was made from white ceramic. To each cup I added 1.5TB of henna (2006 Spring Crop of Yemen from H4H if anyone cares and yes, it’s been kept in the freezer this whole time).
Then 4 TB of liquid was added to each cup. The distilled water was warmed to 120◦F.
Cup 1: 4 TB distilled water (100% distilled water)
Cup 2: 3TB distilled water, 1TB honey (75% distilled water, 25% honey)
Cup 3: 2TB distilled water, 2 TB honey (50% distilled water, 50% honey)
Cup 4: 1TB distilled water, 1TB honey (25% distilled water, 25% honey)
Cup 5: 4TB honey (100% honey)
Cup 6: 3TB distilled water, 1TB honey added after an hour of dye release
Cup 7: 3TB distilled water, 3TB honey added after an hour of dye release
Henna was mixed with a spatula so no metal ever contacted any of the test batches.
2 locks of mohair were immediately added to the cups, still damp, and then smooshed about with a spatula and covered with saran wrap. To accelerate things, I set them on a metal tray placed over my food dehydrator (house it cold, and dye release would be slow otherwise) Temperature on the metal tray was 100◦F.
One lock was extracted after 1 hour to gauge dye release impact, another at 3 hours to better gauge dye uptake. All locks were rinsed with only water, blotted, and left to air dry.Observations:
Visible Dye Release- At the one hour mark there was no visible difference in the batches except for the viscosity of the mud- the more honey the thicker the mud. At the time I extracted the final mohair locks, there was a red film of dye on top of the mud of Cup 1, and a few thin puddles of dye on the top of Cup 2. Cups 6 and 7 had some traces of red dye, but less than that seen in cup 2.


Rinsing- Cup 1 rinse out as muddy water. As I went up in honey content the henna came off in stringy clumps, growing in size with the honey content. It was easier to rinse those cups with more honey content, but was very slippery and I nearly lost a few locks down the drain because of it.


Results:
Here are the strands that were extracted from Cups 1-5 after an hour of soaking. As predicted the honey-free cup dyed the brightest, Cup 2 had good visible stain, Cup 3 had faint traces of staining, and Cups 4 and 5 had no staining at all.
http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HennaHoney1.jpg


It was at this point that I added the locks into cups 6 and 7, which had been mixed only with distilled water and left to release dye for an hour. To cup 6 I added 1TB of honey (so it was 75% distilled water, 25% honey, most comparable to Cup 2) and to Cup 7 I added three TB of honey (so it was 50% distilled water and 50% honey, most comparable to Cup 3).

After two hours of further soaking I pulled the second test strands from Cups 1-5 with very similar results to the first set. Here there is faint staining even on Cup 4, but still none on Cup 5, the 100% honey.
http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HennaHoney4.jpg

Here’s where it gets interesting. Here are the locks pulled out of cups 6 and 7 after their two hour soak:
http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HennaHoney3.jpg


In color Cup 6 was closest to Cup 1’s first lock, and Cup 7 was closes to Cup 2’s second lock. So it appears that honey both inhibits dye release, and dye uptake to the hair. I don’t think this is a chemical thing, so much as the honey forms a physical barrier that keeps the lawsone from exiting the ground henna, and then also keeps it from being absorbed into the hair.
http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HennaHoney2.jpg

http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=1142&pictureid=15385



I hope to redo this experiment with molasses to cross-test if it's something in the honey (such as peroxide production, which I don't think is strong enough to produce results this drastic in such a short time frame), or it it's just the viscosity factor (which is what I'm leaning towards).

ETA: Here was another test (for viscosity) that used honey, aloe, and chamomile tea with henna, each was soaked for two hours:
http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/Cassia.jpg

Rather supporting that a thicker fluid in the mix may inhibit dye uptake.

Nightshade
April 4th, 2008, 01:20 PM
While the henna crop experiment was going on I messed around with a small sample of crystalized indigo on mohair.

http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=1142&pictureid=15401
This is the mohair before dying on far left, after dying on far right.


http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=1288&pictureid=15404
This is the cup with distilled water that I accidentally put the blending spoon into, turned the water deep blue right away with only a tiny amount of crystallized indigo. This has nothing to do with the experiment, but it was neat-looking.


http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=1288&pictureid=15405
My hand after getting the aforepictured water on it. Took a lot of scrubbing and about a day to fade.


http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/WoadShotglass.jpg
Here's the actual shot glass in which I mixed the crystallized indigo and some warm distilled water. It had a purple-tinted film on the top.


http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=1288&pictureid=15406
Mohair lock after only a ten minute soak!


http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=1288&pictureid=15407
Same lock in the sun.

The mohair did feel a bit dry, but certainly NOT destroyed as Catherine claimed, and a bit of conditioner rubbed into it made it soft again, with only a little blue runoff.

Hopefully I can test this soon on real hair :)

Nightshade
April 4th, 2008, 01:30 PM
In this experiment I wanted to test the theory that boiling henna kills it.

To begin I made two batches, one of pure BAQ henna mixed with water, the second half henna, half-cassia mixed with water.

To each batch I added boiling water, then popped the cups in the microwave for 5 minutes (covered so they didn't dry out).

Here are the strands right after the batches were microwaved, soaked only ten minutes. Still LOTS of dye present:
http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HennaCassiaStrands1.jpg


I then waited a day and then soaked locks in the mixes for an hour (iirc), then rinsed.

48 hours later:
http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HennaEsperiments2.jpg


Compared to first strands:
http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HennaExperiments3.jpg


After 52 Hours:
http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HennaExperiment5.jpg


And then all three compared:
http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HennaExperiment4.jpg

I would have liked to continue this, but at this point I was nearly out of mix and what I did have was drying out despite my best efforts. So, in conclusion, even after having boiling water added, and microwaving it, these two mixes were still staining after 52 hours.

Nightshade
April 4th, 2008, 01:36 PM
For each of these strand tests I mixed the herb in question with warm distilled water and left the mohair to soak in it for two hours:

http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HerbalTestStrands1.jpg

http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HerbalTestStrands2.jpg


http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HerbalTestStrands3.jpg

http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HerbalTestStrands4.jpg

http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HerbalTestStrands5.jpg

http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/HerbalStrandTests6.jpg

http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/Coccaandmohair.jpg
Cocoa powder on the left, control on the right.

http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/Cassia.jpg
100g henna, 2B henna, 4TB honey (what I use for a gloss) on the left, control on the right.

Nightshade
April 4th, 2008, 01:39 PM
After seeing that walnut stained, I tried 4 batches

Walnut and warm distilled water
Walnut and amla w/ warm distilled water
Walnut simmered in distilled water on the stove for an hour
Walnut and amla simmered in distilled water on the stove for an hour.http://i45.photobucket.com/albums/f80/SaliceMalkin/WalnutTests.jpg

Amla has been theorized to help increase dye uptake, and by these results we can somewhat conclude that simmering increases the amount of dye released/uptaken, and so does the addition of alma (at least in the case of walnut).

Riot Crrl
April 4th, 2008, 03:09 PM
Wow!

Here's what I'm curious about: What if you left it in the crystallized indigo for an hour or more?

Elfling
April 4th, 2008, 04:25 PM
Wow!

Here's what I'm curious about: What if you left it in the crystallized indigo for an hour or more?
Not much more, I'd imagine; indigo has a fast demise time.

zift
April 4th, 2008, 04:36 PM
Wow awesome experiments Nightshade:bowtome:
Is crystallized indigo the same as the indigo powder we use?

Riot Crrl
April 4th, 2008, 04:56 PM
Not much more, I'd imagine; indigo has a fast demise time.

Yeah, I mean condition-wise. Nasty high pH might not have such a fast demise time.

Nightshade
April 4th, 2008, 05:14 PM
Wow awesome experiments Nightshade:bowtome:
Is crystallized indigo the same as the indigo powder we use?

Yes and no, it's indigo, but it's been stopped at max dye release time, (http://www.mehandi.com/shop/skinindigo/) and then crystalized, so there's no grit, just crystals that dissolve into blue water.

Javadandy
April 4th, 2008, 07:24 PM
Nightshade, this thread is amazing! Thank you for all of your work. That boiled henna at 52 hours looks like the henna from my hendingo. Too bad for me, it was old henna I used - caveat emptor - and now I repair it back from darkest brown. Sigh.

So I have bookmarked this page as a resource. :sun: -Your work and Lexie's give nearly the whole spectrum of colors with henna. Totally awesome.

Thanks for all of the information.

Marian

Lexie
April 4th, 2008, 10:16 PM
Awesome, Nightshade. I must say the crystalized stuff still scares me, but it's probably mostly because I've never handled it personally and really haven't read much of anything on it.

Nightshade
April 4th, 2008, 10:34 PM
Javadandy- You're very welcome :flowers:

Lexie- I know :) Figure it can't hurt to experiment more with, anyway. Wouldn't be the first time I've seen Catherine make claims that may not prove to be true, so I want to look into it more, yanno?

Lexie
April 5th, 2008, 11:07 AM
Agreed. If I may be so bold to make a request...would you try it for at least an hour just to see if that has an adverse effect? I really need to look up some stuff. I never really delved into pH and hair much. I know probably as much/little as the average person.

EvilPigeon
April 5th, 2008, 12:03 PM
Wow! I'm stunned by the use of henna+cassia+indigo for acheiving blonde hair on white...it looks like a very pretty natural color.

MeMyselfandI
April 5th, 2008, 12:28 PM
Very intresting experiments Nightshade.

Thank you for experimenting with so many variables.

I would like to see cardamom and cinnamon each added to some henna and see if they affect dye release and or colour of hair like honey does.


Nightshade did you do any experimenting with wet and dry wool to see if the uptake of henna was the same?

WritingPrincess
April 7th, 2008, 03:44 PM
Wow, this is very informitive. Thank you, Nightshade.

Rae~
April 7th, 2008, 07:18 PM
This is awesome that you've reposted this info, Nightshade - thank you!

I'm definitely going to do some experiments with killing henna dye. I love cassia, but I'd also love to add a little henna in and still not get (much) colour change. Being that my hair is quite dark, and looking at those 52hr swatches, I think it might be possible. Must look around for some henna locally.

Nightshade
April 8th, 2008, 08:26 AM
Nightshade did you do any experimenting with wet and dry wool to see if the uptake of henna was the same?

Herm. I haven't, but I'll hazard a guess that it has as much to do with wet and dry wool as it does with thick or thin henna mud. So thin mud on dry hair= thick mud on wet hair... Great idea for a test!



Agreed. If I may be so bold to make a request...would you try it for at least an hour just to see if that has an adverse effect? I really need to look up some stuff. I never really delved into pH and hair much. I know probably as much/little as the average person.

As soon as I get around to ordering some samples I will be sure to try that :)

Ohio Sky
June 20th, 2008, 11:16 AM
Well, Ive been experimenting a bit with the Ancient Blue indigo crystals mentioned in this thread.

My first go was mixing the crystals with CO (V05 Vanilla mint tea). Its really hard to work with and dyed my scalp blue till my next wash, but did little to the hair. I left it on for less than 10 minutes though because I am cautious with this stuff.

Last night I had the house all to myself unexpectedly so I decided to play around more. I did a henna gloss (er... something like that) and left a bit of my hair out for experimenting. Prior to applying this stuff, I hadnt washed in 5 days and was on the greasy side, so that may or may not have an affect on the outcome.

I mixed about 1 tbsp of the indigo crystals in with about 1/8 cup of the henna mix I was using in my hair, minus the condish. It contained coffee and cloves. I applied this mixture to one strand of hair, and to another I applied a mix of approx. 3/4 henna (no cloves or coffee) and 1/4 indigo. Both were really dark going on, a deep blue almost black color. I left them in for 30 minutes and rinsed. I didnt use anything but water to rinse, and didnt touch the strands until they were dry.

Now its quite a PITA for me to upload pictures because I dont have internet at home and cant upload pictures at work (mostly because my comp here sucks) but I did take pictures every step of the way and was going to put them up sometime. However, I got virtually nothing out of this experiment. I can tell no difference whatsoever between the strands that I put nothing on and the indigo strands, neither in texture nor in color. So it would really be a waste of quite a bit of time and effort.

But I will continue to experiment with this until I run out of the sample.

Other things to note:

1) As far as Catherines claims that this stuff is too alkaline for hair and will fry it, I havent noticed any such thing. I would be wary of applying it straight for long periods of time, but the tests I did mixed with henna show no change in the quality of the hair. This weekend I plan to test a strand using 50/50 and leaving in on for probably 2 hours, so that will be the real test!

2) As for her claims that it will smurf the bathroom... well, that I should have posted pictures of. DO NOT attempt this if you value the color of your bathroom. Cover everything in newspaper, then in towels, then another layer of newspaper, and dont bother to wash the towels. Just burn them. But dont touch them in the process. Anything you wear, and whatever you use to apply this stuff, should not be expected to be reused. And Im pretty sure this stuff stained my hands through the latex gloves I was wearing. But, Ive been vigilant and have kept a dark colored towel handy, and I havent noticed any actual stains after wiping up my messes quickly.

3) This stuff has an incredibly weird texture. Its very difficult to work with, and runny. It would be difficult to use large quantities of this stuff in your hair without something to thicken it. It pretty much completely dissolves in water.

4) This stuff REAKS. And not like henna or regular indigo. Like a power plant. It smells of raw chemical sewage. Its disgusting. But, it seems to only really smell when mixing, and both times Ive used it Ive noticed a distinct blueberry smell when rinsing. :confused: I dont smell anything but conditioner after rinsing and drying.

So Im not an expert on indigo at all and even less with this specific type. I have no idea whatsoever why this stuff isnt staining. Nightshade got intense results very quickly. And Im getting nothing. I dont know if something Im doing while mixing is inhibiting dye release or if Im not leaving it in long enough... I have no clue.

Nightshade, do you have any suggestions as to what I should try this weeked to try to get some kind of results?

iris
June 20th, 2008, 01:56 PM
According to this (http://www.indigopage.com/how/skin2.htm), stirring the crystal indigo brings it in contact with too much oxygen. Oxidized indigo doesn't dye - basically whatever is blue in your mix, is already wasted and will not dye. The only form of indigo that does dye, is colorless - it has to be in this colorless form to associate with the hair, and it gets its blue color later.

Indigopage is a very good source of information for indigo. I also like its chemistry page (http://www.indigopage.com/chemistry.htm).

Also I think that mixing it with henna may not be a good idea - it may throw off the pH too much. (Although that doesn't seem to be much of a problem with indigo leaves, but yeah).

Iris

Ohio Sky
June 20th, 2008, 02:12 PM
Hmmm... well, going from the information given on those pages, the only feasable way I can see to get this stuff into your hair without destroying the dye molecule would be to put warm water in a squirt bottle and add the indigo, then spray it in immediately. That doesnt give me much control over it, though...

Thanks for the info, Iris!

ladystar
June 20th, 2008, 02:42 PM
This is a great thread thanks lady's.

iris
June 20th, 2008, 05:12 PM
Hmmm... well, going from the information given on those pages, the only feasable way I can see to get this stuff into your hair without destroying the dye molecule would be to put warm water in a squirt bottle and add the indigo, then spray it in immediately. That doesnt give me much control over it, though...
Or you could stir it in a vacuum :p

Seriously though, indigo has been much better researched than henna (the stakes are higher because of the textile dyeing), really a lot is known about it and if you read up on methods to get the most dye out of indigo to dye textiles with it, it'll make your head spin.

I always think that, with all that is known about how to most effectively dye textile with indigo, that if those techniques would be useful on hair, they would have transferred long ago. Dyeing with indigo leaves is a rather inefficient process, but for hair, it just may be the best way to do it, everything considered :shrug:

Iris

Ohio Sky
June 20th, 2008, 05:52 PM
I wonder if my hair will take it no matter how its mixed, because regular old indigo didnt too much for me even after repeat applications. It darkened a little, but washed out quickly.

The original inspiration for this was because I dont (or didnt, really) have time to do a 2 step an wasnt getting dark enough results anyways. So, it looked like a possibe shortcut. May as well mess with it until the sample is gone, at least :shrug:

Nightshade
June 20th, 2008, 09:06 PM
Interesting experiment, OhioSky.

Iris already posted a lot of great information :D She rocks! :cheer:

Your results on human hair are similar to those with my mohair in the way that neither "fried" the hair. I couldn't tell a texture difference from the mohair strand that went totally black when compared to the other henna tests I was doing at the time.

The stuff IS really runny, so perhaps rather than conditioner it could be mixed with some sort of gel and no water? Aloe, perhaps, or some ThickIt?.

When I did the mohair test I just mixed the crystals into water and tossed in the lock, and that's not very efficient on real hair (short of filling up a bowl and plunking your head in it, which will get you blue ears for sure).

What confuses me is how I got the mohair to dye blue/black when it shouldn't have worked because of the colorless aspect Iris mentioned :ponder:

iris
June 21st, 2008, 05:14 AM
What confuses me is how I got the mohair to dye blue/black when it shouldn't have worked because of the colorless aspect Iris mentioned :ponder:
The mix/solution will always look dark, - part of the indigo will oxidize to uselessness, part of it will be in its useful light-colored form (or not, but you can't tell by looking at the mix).

All I was trying to say is that how dark the dye looks is not a good indication of how well it will dye. I mean, it just seems crazy right, you have this really dark stuff, it stains everything it touches, and then it doesn't stain your hair :confused:? I was just trying to explain that one of the possible reasons why it doesn't stain the hair, is that the darkness that looks so promising in the mix, is actually the useless part that won't do anything for you. But that doesn't mean that a dark-looking mix is useless. A dark mix can still have a fair portion of the useful colorless/yellow form present.

Ohiosky, indigo never took well on my hair either - the bulk of it would wash out in 2-3 days, and then the rest would wash out within a week. (One-step or two-step didn't make a difference for me). Following the logic on indigopage, hair needs to have a certain porosity to hold on well to indigo - big enough 'holes' to let the indigo in in its light form, and small enough to have the indigo trapped in its slightly bigger oxidized form. Indigo-resistant hair could be either too porous or not porous enough, I guess. (And mohair does of course have a different texture from human hair).

Have you tried using salt with your indigo?

Iris

Ohio Sky
June 23rd, 2008, 11:23 AM
Ok I tried this again yesterday. I put 1 oz of warm water in a spray bottle and put about 1 tsp of the indigo in that. I didnt shake it or anything. I sprayed the water into my bathroom sink until it came out blue, then sprayed it onto a few strands of hair.
First thing I noticed- forget about what I said about being diligent with a dar colored towel. This stuff, mixed this way, stained everything. IMMEDIATELY. My sink is still blue, I couldnt get it out with bleach. My hands are blue where the spray splashed up on me, and even though I tried to wipe it away immediately it didnt even smudge.

Sounds like it should dye everything, right? No... :confused:

I left it on my hair for 10 minutes, and then I washed. I used shampoo and conditioner this time, because I figured that this mix had more of a potential to wreck my hair. Didint look at it till my hair dried, and I see nothing still. My hair didnt change colors, in fact the blue on my scalp even washed off which is weird because my hands are still blue.

I guess maybe if I used a clarifying poo and added salt to the water first...

Nightshade
June 23rd, 2008, 12:57 PM
That makes sense Iris, thank you for explaining it to me :)

ROFL oh OS, your poor blue hands. Try a Magic Eraser thing for the sink. Your hands are stuck blue for a day or three, though.

THat's so strange that it seems to stick to anything BUT hair :rolleyes:

iris
June 23rd, 2008, 06:02 PM
Tsk, wth is going on here?

Could you try some on a bit of wool? Or on some shed hairs from someone else in your household? That might give an idea of whether it's your hair specifically that resists the indigo?

Iris

Nightshade
June 23rd, 2008, 08:43 PM
which also makes me think that perhaps it takes better on hennaed hair? I've got two full-length pieces of my hair that I'd love to test. I really need to order more of that stuff from Catherine. :rolleyes:

Nightshade
July 10th, 2008, 08:34 AM
I also wanted to make sure we had the link to the old henna mythbusters thread from the archives in here (http://archive.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=68998)!

Summary from there:(The links aren't going to work!)

Untested Henna Myths- Got something you've heard about henna, but haven't seen it substinated? Here's a listing of things that are "out there" but haven't been tested yet.
Indigo preferrs an alkaline PH, while henna prefers an acidic PH. (No, Physicschick, it isn't a hint ;))
Henna does not react with metal: Lawsone is actually a good chelator for metals, i.e. it traps metal ions in its rings. I'll have to go through some papers to retrace the exact conditions etc.
BAQ henna and indigo will NOT give you blue/green/black hair if you dye over them with coventional dyes: there's quite a bit of anecdotal evidence that this is not true. Should be properly tested.
Henna paste turning brown indicates dye release:
Evidence for this: an overdose (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showpost.php?p=1301259&postcount=5686) of citric acid will turn your brown paste green, and will kill its staining ability at the same time. Possibly against (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showpost.php?p=1292933&postcount=5596): a mix with cold water turns brown immediately. Should be very easy to test if it does indeed stain: just add some cold water, see it go brown, and test dye release (two minutes on skin should do it).Henna Myths in Progress- Things that are being worked on (link will go to the first post relavant to the topic).
Lemon Juice and Conditioner Remove Henna (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=68578)- Still in progress, so far the result seems to be that this works better on freshly hennaed hair than henna that has sat awhile. Thread also branches off into a discussion of removal methods.
Lemon juice gives better stain than tap water: True for Catherine's (http://www.hennaforhair.com/forum/index.php?module=phpwsbb&PHPWSBB_MAN_OP=view&PHPWS_MAN_ITEMS%5B%5D=2322) tap water. But false for Iris's (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showpost.php?p=1301259&postcount=5686) tap water, and also false for kenzi's (http://www.hennatribe.com/viewtopic.php?t=2270) tap water - quite the opposite, actually: water works better than lemon juice for us.
The addition of other herbs will "push" the henna mix towards other hues (referring here to herbs outside of amla/cassia/indigo). Because henna is such a potent herb there are very few that seem to be able to stand up to lawsone. Many colors/teas/herbs give a very weak stain, as shown by the Herbal Strand Test Thread (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=58582). Turmeric and rhubarb root (both of which contain the same type of dye molecule iirc) seem to be the only ones with a chance. Personal results (using 35g turmeric to 50g henna) did find that it was more golden in color, but the gold seemed to wash out over the course of a few weeks. The remaining stain was lighter, but that could also be attributed to the dilution of the henna powder.
You can cover up the smell of henna. Maybe not so much cover up so much as overwhelm. More testing/results as to what helps minimize the smell.
Honey inhibits henna dye release/dye uptake to the hair Another possibility is that the weak peroxide in the diluted honey lightens the hair, but other experiments have shown henna to be fairly unaffected to the honey lightening tests.
Busted Henna Myths- Things that have (to a reasonable degree), been tested. This section is subject to change as new information is found and our knowledge expounded upon.
Henna Crop/Region Powder Comparison Results (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=61434)- There's been some conjecture as to which henna is the "reddest" or the "orangest" and I set out to answer the question of does henna from a different region/crop/etc dye a significantly different hue? I compared 8 different powders (and two blends) under circumstances as controlled as I could make them. The short answer- if it's BAQ there's no real difference on hair, or skin according to these results on Henna Tribe (http://www.hennatribe.com/viewtopic.php?t=5695&sid=e2d96f1177ec1aaf97451d663b1c3a62).
Boiling Henna Kills the Lawsone Molecule- False. Check out posts 90 (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showpost.php?p=998635&postcount=90), 94 (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showpost.php?p=1000109&postcount=94), and 98 (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showpost.php?p=1001298&postcount=98)in the Cassia Thread. Even after boiling/baking the henna at high temperatures it still dyed for over 52 hours afterwards.
Oxidation is an irreversible process: The darkening of henna from orange to reddish brown (commonly referred to as oxidation) is not a one-way track, it's actually a completely reversible reaction - it's very easy to get henna back to orange. After which it will darken back up again over the course of a few days.

Experimental evidence: Results of conditioner-lemon juice mixture on hair here (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showpost.php?p=1292751&postcount=1) (scroll down for pics).
Literature: This paper (http://www.google.nl/url?sa=t&ct=res&cd=1&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.biochemj.org%2Fbj%2F028%2F018 0%2F0280180.pdf&ei=XEPDRqSdCJfuwwGJhtC4CA&usg=AFQjCNGK0bPfYiBE6zMi6_XOWdSJllUoYw&sig2=W8Zlqm2gaQDJcXBrD6oxTw) from 1938 says that lawsone is found in its oxidized form in henna leaves, and it can be very easily and reversibly reduced (unoxidized). The paper investigates cell 'breathing'. The reversible oxidation/reduction of lawsone is thought to play a role in the cell 'breathing' of certain plants.

The open question here is: what does this oxidation look like? Oxidation is a scarily broad term - I'd like to know what the exact reaction is. Working hypothesis: it's the lawsone (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lawsone) losing its H. (Any chemists in the room?)

wintersun99
July 10th, 2008, 09:29 AM
Nightshade, could you also post a link to your old thread with your henna experiments? I had that thread saved (at some point in the past) but it's gone now... I'd like to make sure I've got it subscribed to. Cheers :)

Nightshade
July 10th, 2008, 10:26 AM
Nightshade, could you also post a link to your old thread with your henna experiments? I had that thread saved (at some point in the past) but it's gone now... I'd like to make sure I've got it subscribed to. Cheers :)

I've reposted most of them at the beginning of this thread, but anything I missed will be in here (http://archive.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=58582&highlight=herbal):)

Huh, I forgot what a nice index that thread had. :ponder:

physicschick
July 10th, 2008, 08:27 PM
Indigo preferrs an alkaline PH, while henna prefers an acidic PH. (No, Physicschick, it isn't a hint ;))

That's good, because I don't know if I'll have time to do this until I quit my job (which is sounding more appealing by the day). :lol:

Riot Crrl
July 10th, 2008, 11:52 PM
I don't know which thread I should best put this in, but I got a pH tester and have been testing a few henna solutions. I don't have any indigo at the moment.

I didn't test these dying capacity, after I was done pH testing them I dumped them all together to freeze and use on my hair. I figured one, it's already been done; two, I lack a sufficient medium to dye test on; and three, where my hair is concerned I already know that my tapwater only works better than lemon juice.

So here's what I got. All henna used was Yemen from Mehandi. All water was my tapwater, which is 8.3. I used enough liquid to make a pudding like paste, which, by volume was about 1:2 henna:liquid. (Seems to soak it up.)

Tapwater only with henna: 4.7
Lemon juice (bottled, store brand): 2.7
Lemon juice only with henna: 3.0
1:3 tapwater:lemon juice with henna: 3.4
Strong green tea (didn't have chamomile) brewed with my tapwater: 5.6
Strong green tea with henna: 4.7

All of these except for the tea, I retested after one hour and again after two hours. They stayed the same.

Interesting that tea and water resulted in the same pH after mixed with henna, even though the water was 8.3 and the tea was 5.6.

caribou55313
January 12th, 2009, 12:00 PM
I'm in total awe of this thread ... the patience! Thanks to Nightshade and Lexie (hi Lexie!) for the hours of work!

Carrie

tabitie
March 6th, 2009, 11:22 PM
Dear Nightshade,

Thank you so much for your research. Boiling Henna for 52 hours and finding out it still dyes-- that makes you a real scientist.

Unlike a certain Ph.D. out there who isn't scientific at all. If I had followed her advice and not found this forum, my hair would now be ruined. Not to mention the cost which is, I think, excessive.

I've yet to try these natural products on my hair, so I'm no expert yet.

Thanks for being *you*. You're a treasure.

Nightshade
March 7th, 2009, 12:02 AM
Dear Nightshade,

Thank you so much for your research. Boiling Henna for 52 hours and finding out it still dyes-- that makes you a real scientist.

Unlike a certain Ph.D. out there who isn't scientific at all. If I had followed her advice and not found this forum, my hair would now be ruined. Not to mention the cost which is, I think, excessive.

I've yet to try these natural products on my hair, so I'm no expert yet.

Thanks for being *you*. You're a treasure.

Oh...wow... Thank you so much, that made me feel wonderful :blossom: :o

I know my methods aren't perfect, but I at least really try to stick to the scientific method.

PS- what did you think of the henna article? (linked in my siggy)

tabitie
March 7th, 2009, 02:02 AM
I've only had a chance to scan it. My favorite was Iris' pictures of her hair in many different lights. Gorgeous. You have the makings of a best-selling book on Amazon.com. Many nice photos and material off this website could be used to make the book(s).

Here's my takeaway: the mainstream media and the big pharma international corporations mostly produce toxic disinfo. Superslick Ph.D.'s with a 1000 articles on henna, professional photos, 5-6 websites-- all this could be false flag.

(Like ABC's 20/20 claiming some organic grocery store chain in Ohio had just as many pesticides as regular stores-- then having to apologize for this... they completely made it up!)

To make natural dyes and soaps appear so confusing and lead people to believe you can't predict the results (because you're using 100x too much with citrus juice/ph? or other materials that cancel them out to varying degrees per bogus instructions... then crossing your fingers and praying) all this would benefit big pharma and big cosmetic. To market it as orange cat / indigo cat and eliminate all the 30-somethings and 40-somethings who want natural (mousey) colors to cover gray... this would also benefit big pharma and big cosmetic. I would ask who is behind orange kat and where the money trail is going. A hippy persona can conceal a corporate shill.

Too bad there's less profit in things of real value. Fact is, these wonderful herbs are commodities from India. I'd rather vote with my wallet and give the profit to the farmers in India or wherever they may be, than to some slickster presenting themselves as an authority on this. This is folk ways and folk practice that needs to be revived. Commonsense stuff, not the eccentric things covered in thousands of articles by orange kat.

I would like to see you publish a book on this, Iris/Nightshade/Lexie/HoneyGeek/JaneDoe! One of you deserves to profit off this and get the real info out there. Folks should go to ebay or an Indian grocery store, buy this stuff and for $3/month you can get healthy scalp and gray coverage sans cancer and birth defects. There is so much here. So much of value. Good luck!!

Nightshade
March 7th, 2009, 12:15 PM
Oh wow, thank you :) I have considered a book on henna, and while I do sell a bit of henna and related stuff- there's just no way to compete with the larger suppliers that can buy direct and then tout their PHDs, so I don't :(

I figure if the best I can do is at least get the information out there, even if I don't profit from it, well, then that's where I'll start.

Thank you again! :flowers:

vkb247
October 3rd, 2009, 08:49 PM
I am sorry if I am asking too much, but can someone give me a summary of the results here. I see that many things inhibit henna uptake such as honey but it doesn't seem like these things are discouraged.

Are there threads where some of these ideas have been disproved?

Nightshade
October 3rd, 2009, 09:29 PM
Sadly a lot of the threads are in the archives, but there's a good collection of them here in the old Henna Mythbusters thread:

http://archive.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=68998

The links won't work unless you switch out the "forums" to "archives, as below:

http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showpost.php?p=1301259&postcount=5686

to

http://archives.longhaircommunity.com/showpost.php?p=1301259&postcount=5686



The thread I linked above, and the henna article in my siggy, probably have the best summaries :) Please ask if you have any questions!

curlychica702
May 8th, 2013, 11:44 PM
This is the most awesome thread i have EVER READ in like my whole life lol.

Nightshade
May 9th, 2013, 12:14 AM
:lol: This is the new version. you should have seen the monster on the old board!