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mellie
March 12th, 2008, 07:50 AM
Hi, I noticed in another posting that someone brought up non-henna alternatives to coloring gray, so I thought we should bring that topic back.

Here are some things I've tried:

Sage/Rosemary: I tried it every day for two months. No change for my grays. I have a theory that perhaps Purple Sage might do better?

Darjeeling tea: I used it every day, and it did stain my grays somewhat, so they blended in better with my dark brown.
Before:
http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=423&pictureid=9737

After:
http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=423&pictureid=9744

Red Raspberry Leaf: This also stained my grays so they blended better. I think it worked better than the Darjeeling for me. I had to use it every day. I was actually able to leave this in, without rinsing, it added some nice body and luster.

Hibiscus: Dyed my grays a reddish/burgundy. Definitely blended in my grays better, but I didn't like the red color.
Before:
http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=423&pictureid=9749

After
http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/picture.php?albumid=423&pictureid=9750

Please share your experiences!

Thank you!

khyricat
March 12th, 2008, 12:22 PM
I henna, but I also use a hibiscus leave in.. and I find I can go longer between hennaing because the greys are tinged red at the roots and thus less visible.. not the stark white.. now if I miss a section up front with the hibiscus and I am in need of Henna, its VERY visible.. instead of only slightly so when I get the hibiscus all over and leave it in!

BrianaFineHair
March 12th, 2008, 09:45 PM
Mellie, this is something I would be interested in doing. Seems much less complicated than henna, or at least, until I work up my nerve.

What exactly do you do? Just brew the tea and do a rinse leaving it in; not rinsing out? Do you do anything prior to or just shampoo and or condition then the tea rinse?

tiny_teesha
March 13th, 2008, 12:39 AM
My mother wants to find a less smelly way to get rid of her grays. I just started her on some henna and indigo. Turned a brassy orange. Not that bright OMG orange. lol.
She wants a more brown. Someone recommended amla. We will try it out. I want to henna her hair a few more times first to strengthen it though.
Is there something that stains but eventually rinses out. That way when she decides to go gray it will naturally fade and not have to grow it out?
Which is less messy way to do i think the red rasberry leaf, what colour did it change? red or brown? My mum wants a golden brown not so much reddish, but the henna is redding it and it doesnt look bad.

quidscribis
March 13th, 2008, 05:43 AM
Mellie, when you used the hibiscus, was it a permanent color or did it wash out?

khyricat
March 13th, 2008, 06:01 AM
Hibiscus is NOT permanent, and if rinsed washes right out, at least for me.. but I use it as a leave in anyway, so that works.. and I henna so its really only important to me on the roots that are exposed and would otherwise stand out white..

tiny_teesha
March 13th, 2008, 06:11 AM
How do you prepare the henna spray? Also Where can you get red rasberry leaf from and how do you reppare that?

mellie
March 13th, 2008, 06:11 AM
Hi everyone! In answer to your questions:

Briana - Yes, just brew up a strong tea, and rinse it through your hair as many times as possible, catching it in another bowl. With red raspberry leaf and hibiscus, you can leave it in. (I found a very easy way to do the hibiscus - just brew up the tea and put it in a spritzer, then you can just spritz the grays when you need to!). With Darjeeling, you have to rinse it out or your hair will feel really yucky. And yes, all you need to do is shampoo before (even the night before is fine).

Tiny Teesha - FYI, I posted my amla-only results in other posting (called "Talk to me about AMLA"). From my experience, you won't want to use it by itself, but in combination with henna and indigo. (Not to sabotage my own thread, but, you can get a really nice chocolate brown with just henna and indigo, you probably just need to use a little more indigo, or try a two-step method. In a two-step, you henna first, then indigo. That worked really beautifully for me.)

TT, cont - In answer to your question, "is there anything that stains that rinses out?", yes, all of these tea stains will shampoo out the next time you wash. That's one drawback of these tea rinses. Also the color won't hardly be as strong as henna. But, I think the red raspberry leaf would give you a nice light brown (not red at all). See above on how to apply it. It's not messy like henna.

Quidscribis - the hibiscus washed right out with the next shampoo.

Hope that helps! Let me know if you have any other questions! :-)

quidscribis
March 13th, 2008, 06:25 AM
I was hoping the hibiscus would be permanent. I'd like to add it to my henna to make it redder and less orange since I love flaming red hair. :D But I also like the idea of using hibiscus tea to temporarily cover the whites until the next time I henna. That sounds like a good option for me.

And now I'm thinking again of getting me a hibiscus plant... :)

mellie
March 13th, 2008, 07:03 AM
Hi quidscribis!

Yes, it will definitely work to cover the gray temporarily between hennaings, I used it for a while for that purpose till I got sick of the red. Be aware, some folks have reported that hibiscus made more of a blue/purple for them than red...guess it depends on the pH of your hair?

That would be awesome to grow your own hibiscus! I bet it smells lovely!

quidscribis
March 13th, 2008, 07:26 AM
Blue or purple wouldn't bother me soooo much... Back when I was younger, I used to do some pretty wild colours... :D

I grow my own henna (I've only had the plants a couple or so months, so they're still far too young to be used for dye - from what I've read, it takes about a year from cuttings), so why not add hibiscus to the mix? :D I've gotten some interesting looks here when I mentioned the hibiscus smell and such, so it's possible that a local variety of hibiscus doesn't smell at all and isn't the variety used for tisanes (I love hibiscus tisane!) So, I don't know, except that I'll have to research it a bit further.

mellie
March 13th, 2008, 07:34 AM
Then you'll love it! The spritzer method was really great for spot checks on grays.

That's cool that you grow your own henna! I've considered this too, of course it would have to be indoors since it gets so cold here.

quidscribis
March 13th, 2008, 07:39 AM
It's not really hot enough here for the quality of henna that you get from, say, Pakistan, but considering the difficulty of buying henna here without metallic salts or other unknown things added, it still makes sense for me. My mother in law (Sri Lankan and she hennas :D) has been my henna supplier thus far. She mostly gets hers from Dubai, but she's also found one brand here that I can use (I used to use chemical hair colorings, so must be careful about not having metallic salts in the henna). But supplies for everything here are never reliable, so...

Having done some more research, it looks like there are over 200 varieties of hibiscus (http://www.lankanewspapers.com/news/2007/2/12019_space.html), and quite a few grow here. But I did :) find a site that talks about the local variety that's made into tisanes. (http://www.asiafood.org/glossary_1.cfm?alpha=H&wordid=2679&startno=1&endno=25) It even mentions what it's called here, which will soooo help since using the latin name won't get me anywhere, nor is hibiscus itself specific enough. So, time to engage the mother in law in the search for my hibiscus. :D

khyricat
March 13th, 2008, 08:31 AM
I buy the red leaves for tea- dried flowers, then boil them to death in water, strain and use that as a rinse.. it colors the tub and any cloth I get it on purple until I rinse it, but my hair doesn't seem any more purple to me...

quidscribis
March 13th, 2008, 08:52 AM
At this site (http://www.stjohnusvi.com/hibiscus.html), it says this:
In India and Jamaica, they are often called shoe-flower, a reference to the use of the crushed flowers as a black shoe polish. Asian women reportedly also use this natural glossy black dye, in their case, as a hair coloring. The flowers are also edible, making a colorful addition to salads. (The hibiscus flowers used in herbal teas are from the related annual plant Hibiscus sabdariffa, usually called Jamaican Sorrel.)Which has me wondering if what's referred to here as hibiscus is not the same variety of hibiscus which you, mellie, use for spot-coloring the whites red.

My mother in law is supposed to be here tomorrow, so I think I'll ask her a bunch of questions and see what she knows.

wintersun99
March 13th, 2008, 07:23 PM
Hi, I noticed in another posting that someone brought up non-henna alternatives to coloring gray, so I thought we should bring that topic back. Hibiscus: Dyed my grays a reddish/burgundy. Definitely blended in my grays better, but I didn't like the red color. Please share your experiences!
Thank you!

Oh my goodness, I really love the highlights you rec'd with Hibiscus, I am going to try it tonight! Thank you, thank you for the pictures, it gave me some really neat ideas and perhaps contribute to this thread with more experiments.

For my part, I have tried a Sage/Nettle rinse, which did not appear to taint my gray hairs at the roots (the only place I notice them) and they are not too abundant, and I believe this seemed to dry out my hair.

I have also tried Black Tea and Coffee rinses (separately) and noticed no color change, but did notice dryness.

That's it so far....

Mahars
March 13th, 2008, 07:57 PM
My mother wants to find a less smelly way to get rid of her grays. I just started her on some henna and indigo. Turned a brassy orange. Not that bright OMG orange. lol.
She wants a more brown. Someone recommended amla. We will try it out. I want to henna her hair a few more times first to strengthen it though.
Is there something that stains but eventually rinses out. That way when she decides to go gray it will naturally fade and not have to grow it out?
Which is less messy way to do i think the red rasberry leaf, what colour did it change? red or brown? My mum wants a golden brown not so much reddish, but the henna is redding it and it doesnt look bad.

I'm very surprised the henna and indigo turned her hair orange. What ratio of henna to indigo did she use? You need about twice as much henna as indigo to make it brown. Adding a little amla to it takes out some redness and cools the color down. My hair came out almost black when I did this.

mellie
March 14th, 2008, 05:26 AM
Quidscribis - that certainly does sound like a different hibiscus! Although, I would be interested if it does make a glossy black dye as they say!

Wintersun- thanks! Please share your experiences if you do any other experiments! :-)

tiny_teesha
March 14th, 2008, 06:27 AM
Mahars - i mixed about, 50g henna with 20g indigo and 2 tbsp amla. Left the henna for many hours (over night and more) to develope and then mixed fresh indigo with it and out it on. I dunno how it worked out that way! But oh well... She doesn't mind. She wants to get a more golden brown. An indian lady told her just plain amla will do it. So let's see! I plan to henna first, then give her a conditioner and indigo mask- see if that works? Her hair is daaark brown now, virtually black, so with the white it is very stark, we aim to lighten her hair colour a bit and then let sections go grey. Then the transistion from coloured hair to grey won't be so painful!

wintersun99
March 14th, 2008, 11:30 AM
hmmm - the hibiscus rinse didn't seem to serve me well. I ended up with crunchy hair, was I supposed to rinse it out? I bought the hibiscus leaves at Nature's, put them into a bag designed to boil tea leaves, let them simmer for an hour or so, poured the mix into a spray bottle and them misted my roots. My hair is quite crunchy where I used this spray and this has been my experience with every mix I've ever tried. However, I did not rinse.... ???

mellie
March 14th, 2008, 11:41 AM
Sorry you had a problem! When I made mine, I actually didn't boil it at all, I just poured some boiling water over the hibiscus flowers (it was flowers not leaves) and let it steep till cool. I am bad about measuring, but I'd say I used about a cup of water and a tablespoon or so of the hibiscus flowers. I didn't have to rinse it out, it wasn't crunchy.

Hope that helps! :-)

k_hepburn
March 14th, 2008, 04:58 PM
What a brilliant idea for a thread, mellie!

I can't quite get my head around getting into the henna/indigo routine (worried about strange outcomes since my hair is currently dyed with chemical hair colours, thinking it will just be too time consuming in the long run) but something to help stretch out the times between dyes would indeed be phantastic. If I was able to do spot checks on the greys around my face / along the infamous "skunk stripe", that would definitely be of help.

I'll be checking for red raspberry leaf next time I'm in town. By the way, would that be the red leaves of the raspberry plant, or the (normal, green coloured) leaves of the red raspberry plant? Do you find them in the herbal tea section, or whould I be looking somewhere else (specialist cosmetic ingredients suppliers etc.).

Greetings

katharine

wintersun99
March 14th, 2008, 05:28 PM
Sorry you had a problem! When I made mine, I actually didn't boil it at all, I just poured some boiling water over the hibiscus flowers (it was flowers not leaves) and let it steep till cool. I am bad about measuring, but I'd say I used about a cup of water and a tablespoon or so of the hibiscus flowers. I didn't have to rinse it out, it wasn't crunchy. Hope that helps! :-)

oops, I mistyped. I didn't use leaves, I used the dried hibiscus flowers, sorry. I will try diluting slightly and only misting once instead of many times...maybe I got over excited :)

JennQ
March 14th, 2008, 06:32 PM
Do any of you have any suggestions for coloring grays to blend in with blond? My Mom has ash-blond hair, with grays coming in around her face. She doesn't want to color her hair, although she is thinking about using honey to lighten it a bit. Anything that will actually change the color is right out!
Thanks in advance for your expertise!

tiny_teesha
March 15th, 2008, 05:32 AM
i think cassia dies white hair a pale yellow? Mix of henna (very small amount) with loads of cassia will make it a darker gold.

mellie
March 15th, 2008, 07:26 AM
K_Hepburn: You want to get the dried green leaves of the red raspberry plant. You should be able to find it in your local herb store, if you have one, or perhaps in bulk teas. I used it like you are wanting to, to spot check between dyes. (Not to sabotage my own thread again, but it is OK to henna over chemically dyed hair, I've done it myself and had no weird outcomes :). Also, don't worry, it really isn't any more time consuming than going to the salon for a dye; it takes me just about 1 1/2 hrs, once a month, to keep those grays away!)

JennQ: Try the red raspberry leaf too, it should blend in nicely with blond. Ktani uses catnip for her blond hair, you could try that too! I haven't tried cassia or catnip yet. I'm not sure, but cassia may be permanent like henna?

Wintersun99: Keep me posted! I hope the hibiscus works as nicely for you as it did for me!

coppercurls
March 18th, 2008, 07:07 PM
Do any of you have any suggestions for coloring grays to blend in with blond? My Mom has ash-blond hair, with grays coming in around her face. She doesn't want to color her hair, although she is thinking about using honey to lighten it a bit. Anything that will actually change the color is right out!
Thanks in advance for your expertise!

Chamomile flowers made into a nice strong tea will create nice "blonde" colors. Maybe even some calendula for more of a warm blonde?

ktani
March 19th, 2008, 06:52 AM
I use catnip to cover my grey/white a light blonde - it works and conditions my hair as well. I have been usig it over 2 years now - with no plans to stop.

My routine and details are here (http://forums.longhaircommunity.com/showthread.php?t=476).

Nightshade
March 19th, 2008, 07:01 AM
Yay! The herbal hair coloring articles are back up. You'll find a lot of non-henna alternatives in the Herbal Hair Coloring link in my siggy :)

tiny_teesha
March 19th, 2008, 08:09 AM
I'm trying the hibiscus thing on my mum tommorow!
So you just shake the bottle and spray right? let's see how it works!

mellie
March 19th, 2008, 07:35 PM
Yes, that's all I do! Hope it works nicely for you! :-)

tiny_teesha
March 23rd, 2008, 04:16 AM
it did deepen her henna roots. Which is good! I will definetly use it as a touch up from now on!

paper
April 1st, 2008, 04:09 AM
This is an interesting thread. I'm thinking about trying the Red Raspberry Leaf, seeing how you had good luck with it Mellie, and we have same color hair. I live in a small town and doubt I could buy that here. They sell it on e-bay, would that be ok?

I just touched up my roots with hair dye. I was thinking about trying some of these recipies when my new growth comes in. Can't hurt to try.

I have a couple questions. Do you bring water to boil, then let the tea seep, cool, then apply? Also, you mentioned once about catching the tea. Do you reuse it?

Thanks

mellie
April 1st, 2008, 06:16 AM
For the red raspberry leaf, you could also get it through mountainroseherbs.com. I think that is where my herb store gets his from, and also many ladies on this forum too.

to use: I just boiled some water and then poured it over the tea and let it cool enough to rinse through my hair. I did this before work every day. I would pour it through my hair, catching it another bowl, and pour it through the gray hair as many times as possible. If there's any tea left over, just drain it away. If you have time, you could run water through your hair to rinse the tea out a little, but I never had time and just left the tea in. The first day my hair felt a little weird, but after that it actually gave my hair some nice body, kind of like mousse.

Hope it works nicely for you too!

paper
April 2nd, 2008, 04:46 AM
Thanks Mellie for all the info! I'll let you know when I try it.

Lexie
April 2nd, 2008, 11:36 AM
I've known hibiscus all my life, but not as a dye. As a drink. We would cut off the petals from the fresh flowers and boil them for a few hours to a fairly thick liquid with cinnamon sticks and cloves. Then let it cool overnight, add sugar, and store in the refrigerator. The color was a deep, somewhat dark pinkish red. I suppose if the petals were crushed, the concentrated dye may seem black. I had never heard of it being used as a dye of any sort though I do know it as Jamaican sorrel. It's a tradition in my family for us to drink sorrel for Christmas.

khyricat
April 2nd, 2008, 01:18 PM
I use the hibiscus by gently squeezing excess water from hair, pouring it over, repeat. After the second pour, I stay in the tub for a few for the drips to stop.

Amie

Rosepatrice
April 2nd, 2008, 01:22 PM
Chamomile flowers made into a nice strong tea will create nice "blonde" colors. Maybe even some calendula for more of a warm blonde?


I concur. The Chamomile does wonders. Brings out the natural highlights in blonde hair.