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Interview with henna expert, Maureen Jones of EveryDay Mehndi

November 15 2003 at 3:33 AM

Fox  (Premier Login pictures)

Notice: May 13, 2006 - Until further notice, we do NOT suggest you order anything from Everyday Mehndi. There have been many reports of orders being charged, but not being filled for long periods of time. I tried to contact Maureen to see what is going on, but was never able to reach her. Hopefully, she will be able to resove the issue creating these problems. If and when that happens, we will remove this notice. Until then, enjoy the interview. It is full of fabulous tips for using henna!

Maureen Jones considers herself to be in Pre-retirement. She certainly deserves it! She studied Fine Arts, Education, Art History, Public Administration, and Therapy in her formal education. She worked as an artist, administrator in the public sector, social worker, and therapist. She currently owns and operates two business... this is her "pre-retirement!"

While this article is about henna, Maureen also owns the Multicultural Arts and Recreational Times also known as M'ART. They do private contract work throughout Western Pennsylvania with non-profit and governmental agencies and organizations providing expressive arts workshops. Designing and facilitating workshops for women, men, children, adults, individuals, families and groups who have experienced trauma and continue to deal with the resulting effects of the traumatic experience is what M'ART is all about. The purpose of M'ART Workshops is to provide opportunities for individuals to experience and use the arts in ways that promotes health and wellness.

Maureen came to my attention because of her other business, EveryDay Mehndi. EveryDay Mehndi is an online store related to natural products that are utilized for body art, hair and skin care. Maureen has been gracious enough to grant the Loom a very
informative interview!

Maureen, can you tell me what your plan was and is
with EveryDay Mehndi?

The focus is on providing organic products and ingredients that we develop, that may be used safely on the body for the purpose of obtaining and maintaining beautiful, healthy hair and skin. We also want to source out and make available such products that are used on the hair and skin. At EveryDay Mehndi, I have sought to offer natural, organic and safe product alternatives to harmful and harsh chemicals. Many of the products we develop and sell at EveryDay Mehndi are an outgrowth and natural extension to my fascination with, and research into natural alternatives that began around 1970. It was around that time that I first discovered how much can be done with an egg and chamomile tea� In addition to the website store, I also own and manage online forums.
The Henna and Mehndi World Community Forum
is a community where we discuss all things henna.

So educating people is also important to you! Well,
I'm ready to be educated! Can you tell me exactly what
henna is?

There are a lot of things that are referred to as
"henna." Some actually have nothing whatsoever to do
with henna. In fact, many actually have nothing
whatsoever to do with henna.

Typically, "henna" refers to the leaves or powder from
the leaves of the henna bush. Henna (Lawsonia Inermis)
is one of many natural dyes. The pigment found in the
leaves of the henna bush release as a dye when added
to a liquid such water or something acidic, such as
lemon juice. What separates henna from many other
natural dyes, is its ability to stain the skin and
hair more effectively, and for longer periods of time
than most natural dyes are capable of doing.

While the term "henna" is added to lots of products
and ingredients used on hair and skin, it is important
to seek henna that is 100% henna�That is 100% Lawsonia

How is henna processed? Are there any chemicals used
in it prior to marketing?

All things contain some sort of chemical or another.
What we seek with henna and our other natural products
is that the product item or ingredient be 100%
natural; meaning that it contains no synthetics.

Natural henna, 100% henna, 100% natural henna,
Lawsonia Inermis are the ways that "henna" will be
referred to when it contains no additives of any kind.
For hair and skin, that is what most people want.

There are "henna" products sold that contain
synthetics and additives. Most of these products
provide clues that they are not 100% natural henna.
Some may have label warnings related to allergies, and
these should be avoided. There are also "henna"
products sold that contain metallic salts; these are
called "henna compounds." This type of product should also be avoided.

There are also "henna" products sold that contain
additives that are not synthetic. On these products
the label often indicates that they are 100% herbal
rather than 100% henna, natural henna, or Lawsonia
Inermis. These products are safe to use and the
additive is typically there to provide color or
increase conditioning properties of the henna.

Add to this, that there are products sold with "henna"
tacked on to the name that most often do not contain
any henna at all, or so little henna that its effect
would be negligible. These are typically commercial
products that have hopped onto the "natural" products
bandwagon and hope that the customer does not notice
that 95% of the product ingredients are synthetic.
Most of the products in your drug store or beauty
supply store that bear the name "henna something or
other," or list henna as an ingredient tend to fall
into this category.

Henna is processed by manufacturers who purchase huge
quantities of henna grown on henna plantations/farms.
The leaves are harvested from the henna bushes. These
leaves are then taken to factories where machines
grind them into powder. Most often, henna powder is
created by blending a number of types of henna leaves
from different areas of a country, or from different
countries and different types of henna plants, in
order to produce the henna powder the manufacturer
desires. After grinding, the henna is then sifted. The
sift of henna that can be obtained can range from
poorly sifted to ultra finely sifted. Poorly sifted
henna will contain visible pieces of leaf and stem.
Ultra finely sifted henna powder is talc-like and
contains no leaf and stem pieces. The sift is often
more important to people who use henna for body art.
However, more and more, people using henna for hair
are enjoying the benefit of using finely sifted henna
powder for their hair. The finely sifted henna powder
used for hair creates a much smoother paste and leaves
no leaf and stem parts in the hair that become a
problem to remove. When the henna powder has been
sifted, it is then packaged for the market.

What makes henna beneficial to hair?

Henna provides two types of benefit to the hair
simultaneously. Henna will condition and color the
hair. As a conditioner, henna strengthens the hair.
It is an anti-fungal, and reduces the occurrence of
dandruff. It conditions the scalp, slightly loosens
the curl pattern, and helps to detangle as well as
make hair more manageable. As a natural source of
color, henna colors the hair red. Not a bright cherry
red, but rather a beautiful and natural red for hair.

How does henna color the hair?

Henna does not color hair like synthetic dyes. Henna
coats the hair shaft with a transparent red coloring.
As applications of henna are repeated, the color
deepens. Henna does not and cannot lighten hair.
However, it can provide on dark hair, red and reddish
highlights. Henna on black and dark brown hair will
eventually become dark auburn to burgundy/black with
red highlights in sunlight. Henna on blonde hair can
shift to a natural red. Henna on red hair will make
the hair a deeper richer red. Henna on brown hair can
range from a natural red to auburn, to dark auburn
depending upon the shade of brown. Henna on white hair
will make the hair a natural red to deep red. A
benefit to using henna is that it will both condition
and color your hair in a way that is both natural and

Some people have said that they experience dryness
with repeated henna use; why is that?

There could be a number of reasons for this. Most
often it is an issue with their application process.
Often people do not rinse the henna from their hair
and scalp sufficiently. The henna paste must be rinsed
thoroughly from the hair. Even beyond the point when
the water runs clear, you must rinse the hair a few
more times. To not do so will result in a feeling of
dryness to the hair. When people are not accustomed to
using henna, they often underestimate the amount of
rinsing that is required and often think they have
sufficiently rinsed the hair when they have not. There
are often tell-tale signs when the hair has not been
rinsed sufficiently: Orange stains on hands,
pillow-cases, collars that come into contact with the
hair; itchy scalp; dryness and brittleness of the hair.

People with hair that leans to the dry side of normal
should be aware that henna does not make the hair less
dry or subject to dryness. If a person with typically
normal to dry hair does not thoroughly rinse the henna
paste from their hair, a dryness problem can become

Another cause is that often people using henna do not
know that they should also use a conditioning
moisturizer or oils, to moisturize and seal in
moisture to their hair. I see henna and a good
moisturizer as a one-two punch the hair needs. Henna,
the hair, rinse thoroughly, then moisturize the hair
when the hair is still wet or moist. The conditioning
henna provides to the hair is different from the
conditioning a moisturizer provides to the hair. Your
hair needs both. It is often when people do not have a
moisturizer in their hair care regimen that they state
that they experience henna as "drying" to the hair. My
guess is that because they are not using a
moisturizer, that whatever they use, they would
eventually find drying. The hair will require both
sorts of conditioning in order to get into and remain
in balance.

And second to not effectively rinsing the hair, the
reason most often for the experience of dryness when
using henna has been the addition of henna to a hair
regimen without eliminating other products. When using
henna, I suggest carefully looking at what other
products one is using and eliminating the protein
products and cholesterol.

Another culprit to the experience of dryness and
brittleness can be the water in your area. If you have
hard water, it will effect your hair when you rinse
it. Often, just using distilled water as the final
rinse can make all of the difference in the world.
Some people have also found that having water filters
installed have resulted in better hair results with
whatever shampoos and conditioners they use.

One of the lovely things about using henna is that you
can create your paste recipe specifically for your
hair. Many people who may have concerns about dryness
add carrier and essential oils to their paste. Many
who do not like the smell add essential oils and
floral waters to their paste. Many who want to shift
the coloring add other natural dyes to their paste.

Is henna so sealing that it locks out moisture and
makes conditioning treatments worthless?

No, that is one of the myths about henna. Henna
provides a transparent coating to the hair that seals
in the hair's natural moisture. However, this effect
does not coat the hair shaft such that it locks out
other sources of moisture. So other conditioning
treatments will be quite effective with henna. And as
stated above, the combination of henna and a
moisturizing conditioning is an excellent and healthy
combo for your hair.

I've heard that henna should be used no more often
than every 3 months in order to let the previous henna
wear off. How often should henna be applied?

Most people use henna once a month�once every 4 weeks.
Henna can be used safely more often. However, it is
not necessary to use it more frequently for the
coloring and conditioning benefits.

Can henna be applied on top of previously
color-treated hair, hair that has had chemical
services, perms, thermal reconditioning or relaxers?

Yes and No...

Yes�if you are using 100% natural henna powder
(Lawsonia Inermis) or a 100% natural herbal/henna
powder. If you know who you are purchasing your henna
from and trust the information they provide about the
henna powder they sell, ask them if their henna is
100% natural henna powder or a 100% natural
herbal/henna powder. The person you purchase your
henna powder from should know what they are selling.
If you think they do not know what they are selling
intimately�intimately means that they import it
directly�then pass on purchasing from them. Because�
this is where the no part of the answer comes in...

No� you can't use "henna" over previously chemically
treated hair if what you have is a henna compound or a
henna product with ingredients you don't know about or
can't pronounce.

The one exception to the use of henna with these
products would be using henna with any of the
semi-permanent hair colorants that contains metallic
salts or metallic dyes. It is again these metallic
salts and metallic dyes that are of concern. The
metallic salts and metallic dyes are used in many
semi-permanent hair colorants and should not be used
with henna or with previously color-treated hair, hair
that has had chemical services, perms, thermal
reconditioning or relaxers. The reason is that the
metallic dyes and metallic salts react with the
neutralizers used with perms and relaxers and also
with peroxide used with many hair dyes. This reaction
can cause damage to both the hair and scalp due to the
intense heat that can be created during the chemical
reaction. These same metallic dyes will alter the
color results of most synthetic or natural dyes and
can produce quite strange hair colors as a
result�typically dark brown, black or green!!!

Once you apply henna, will it always be on your hair
strands, or will it eventually wear off?

Henna eventually fades out of the hair and off the
hair strands. Its effect is temporary. This is why in
order to maintain the effects of the henna,
applications must continue. Without repeat
application, henna coloring can be entirely gone in
3-9 months. Its various conditioning effects wear off
at different rates. For example, henna loosens the
curl pattern of the hair. However, as soon as you wash
your hair, the curl pattern reverts to your normal
curl pattern. You need and want repeat applications of
henna monthly to maintain the strengthening effect on
your hair. Bottom-line, whatever the effect of henna
on your hair, it is temporary rather than permanent.

Would it be safe to go back to using hair dyes and
bleaches after using henna, even if you only used
clear henna?

You can use bleaches and hair dyes on hair that has
been previously hennaed. Is it safe? I would say "No!"
But that is because I do not consider the use of
synthetic hair dyes and bleach to be safe to use ever.
But if you mean will your hair fall out or turn colors
etc., the answer is that none of that would happen as
a result of using 100% natural henna. I can't speak
for what damage a specific hair dye or bleach might
have on the hair. But one should not expect a negative
reaction between the henna on the hair and the dyes
and bleach. Again, the only exception would be those
semi-permanent hair colors that may contain metallic
salts or dyes.

What is "clear" henna?

By clear henna I imagine you mean "neutral henna." The
same as above. Anticipate there to be no negative
effect or reaction. Though, "neutral henna" is not
henna (Lawsonia Inermis) at all really. It is
typically one of a number of other herbs and
botanicals that are used to condition the hair
similarly to henna but which does not effect the hair

Can henna be used over bleached hair in place of a
toner, to get a different color result, or will the
results be "green hair"?

This one is a bit more tricky. My concern would be
what other "toners" were used on the hair. The hair
history would have to be absolutely known. If there is
a chance that the person has used one of the
semi-permanent hair colorants or something like
Grecian Formula, or got a source of metallic salt on
their hair from another source, the answer would be
that the metallic salts still in the hair could result
in green hair. It could result in green hair with
henna and a lot of other hair dyes as well. It is not
about the pigment source. It is about what the
metallic salt will do when coming into contact with a
source of pigment. So the history of the hair is
critical. If there is absolutely no change that there
has been a metallic salt in the hair, then you are
good to go with henna. If the bleached hair turns
green when a dye has been place on it, a metallic salt
has been introduced to that hair somewhere down the
line and is still present in the hair.

What is the most effective way to cover gray hair?
Can gray haired ladies use a color other than red to
cover their gray?

To color your gray hair with henna, there are two
effective ways, and it will depend upon the color
result you wish to obtain. If you wish for the gray
hair to be red, then using excellent and fresh henna
powder will do the job. If you desire a color other
than red, a two step process is recommended. First
color the gray hair red with natural henna powder.
Then color the gray hair that has been turned red
either brown, dark brown or black with an herbal/henna
powder. For black hair, indigo can be substituted in
the second step for the herbal/henna powder in black.
These two processes can safely be done back to
back�meaning within a 24 hour period. You may stretch
the time frame out longer if desired.

What you need to remember is that neither henna nor
herbal/henna can lighten your hair color. So if red is
used in the two step process to take the gray hair to
red, you cannot then use a color like "golden" as the
second step to turn the now red hair to blonde. It can
not lighten the hair. It is a transparent/translucent
coloring and the color beneath the henna helps to
determine the resulting color.

However, you could use herbal/henna in a color like
"golden" to turn your gray hair blonde by using just a
one step process by applying the herbal/henna in
"golden" to your hair. There would be no second step.
Just remember that if your natural hair color is
brown, the herbal/henna powder in "golden" will not
lighten any part of your brown hair. The brown will
show through the transparent/translucent layer of the
henna. You would therefore have hair that is blonde
and brown. With the previously gray hair becoming
blonde and the rest of your hair remaining brown.

People with dark brown and black hair find the two
step process effective in achieving the color results
they want. People with light hair tend to find the one
step process more to their liking. People with
mid-range brown hair often struggle to create a
balance between the red hair and the original color of
their brown hair when maintaining the specific brown
is important to them. In either the one or two step
process, the light to mid range brown hair will change
and is hard to match because there exists such a range
of browns. However, when a specific brown is not as
important, the herbal/henna in brown, dark brown,
chestnut, auburn etc., are typically found satisfying
and can be obtained with either the one or two step

Can you touch up your roots with henna without leaving
an obvious color line?

When you have previously colored your hair with henna,
touching up the roots without coloring and
conditioning the rest of the hair is possible. This is
because of the gradual way henna colors. However, if
you have not previously colored your hair with henna
and want to cover the gray, unless you have red hair,
there will be a dramatic difference between the color
of the hair receiving the henna and the hair that has
not received the henna.

Because henna conditions the hair as well as colors
it�and because henna is typically applied once a
month�why not just henna the new growth as well as the
rest of your hair so that all of your hair benefits
from the conditioning properties of the henna applied.

What is the best way to apply henna for even color
and conditioning?

When and if you can, it is wonderful to have someone
else apply your henna paste to your hair. They can see
the back of your head and you can not. They can see
the missed spots and you can't; they will apply it
more evenly than you. But, that is a luxury most of
us do not have, and that is all right. Because henna
is a paste�and because it remains on your hair longer
than your typical hair colorant, it tends to work its
way through the hair. The plastic cap aids in this

However, making your paste thin enough to work through
your hair thorough with your fingers is the best way
to assure good and even coverage. Divide your hair in
small sections and apply the henna paste to each
section�making sure to get the henna on ever section
of the hair shafts. Then work the henna in with your
fingers to make sure that all of the hair is covered.
The larger sections you attempt to work at one time,
the more likely you will miss places. Some people
have difficulty getting the henna paste to hold to the
hair and experience it falling off sections. There are
two things you can do to help with this. One is to
thin your paste a bit more. The other is to apply your
henna to moist hair.

For those of us with longer hair, what method
or precautions can we take to prevent tangling
of hair length while applying and rinsing out henna?

Sometimes, nothing beats another pair of hands. When
you have the luxury of a friend who henna's her/his
hair, or a sister or cousin or neighbor, buddy-up and
help each other out. Apply the henna to their hair in
exchange for them applying it to your hair. Often we
can get tangles and have problems simply because we
are working blind on our own hair. To buddy-up
provides you with another set of hands as well as

Other suggestions that might help: Section the hair
into small sections prior to putting the paste on your
hair. Twist and pin each section. Apply paste to small
sections at a time. Work from the back of the hair to
the front, unpinning each section and applying paste
to each section one at a time.

While wearing a plastic cap helps to provide the warm
moist environment that henna loves. It is not totally
necessary in order to get the coloring and
conditioning effect from the henna. Sometimes the hair
becomes more tangled when piled up on the head and
forced under the plastic cap. You can allow your hair
to air dry with the paste on it and still get
excellent coloring.

Braiding or plaiting the hair prior to applying henna
also helps to prevent the hair from tangling. It also
provides an interesting and beautiful coloring effect
to the hair.

Be sure to rinse the paste from the hair while
standing in the shower. Let the water run on the hair
so that the hair is not falling down and forward over
the face. Instead, let the water run on the hair so
your hair is falling backward and down the back.
Work the paste out of the hair with your fingers (with
gloves on) while water runs on the hair in the rinsing
stage. Use your fingers to work the paste from the
hair and at the same time, use the fingers to comb
through the hair.

When the hair has been thoroughly rinsed and all henna
paste is removed, AND while the hair is still moist,
apply a moisturizing conditioner or oils to seal in
the moisture. Work the moisturizer or oils through the
hair and comb through the hair with your fingers.
While the hair is still wet and detangled, comb
through your hair with a large tooth comb.

Henna is very effective at detangling hair. So when
tangling is experienced after your henna application,
typically the problem is with how we handle our hair
while removing the paste and rinsing the hair.

Are there things that can cause your henna color
results to fade faster than normal, like the use of
oils and deep conditioners?

When your henna color is set, oils and deep
conditioning will not effect the color. However, oils
and deep conditioning prior to your henna application
or the use of oils in your paste can interfere with
the henna coloring adhering to the hair by creating a
resist on the hair shaft. This is typically observed
rather quickly if oils on the hair or in your paste
has created this resistance or barrier to coloring.
The conditioning effect of the henna will be present,
but the coloring effect will be absent. People adding
oils to there henna paste will need to find the balance
that allows the oils to be used, but not in quantity to
provide resistance or barrier to color.

There are other things that do effect color. Sun fades
the color of henna. Henna is a natural dye and has the
same weakness that is inherent in most natural dyes.
The sun will make the color fade. While henna coloring
is more resilient than most natural dyes, it still
will fade out in the sun. This won't be dramatic. It
won't be a now you see it now you don't experience.
But without repeat applications, normal sun exposure
will eventually fade henna coloring from the hair.
Lots and lots of sun exposure speeds the process up.

Chlorine and salt water will also cause the color to
fade faster. So if you are an avid swimmer, you may
want to protect your hair with a cap, and even apply
some oils to the hair under the cap to reduce the
effect of the chlorine and salt water on the color.

Does using a vinegar rinse help to seal the hair and
color in after a henna treatment? I've heard from some
henna users that they've experienced less "color
residue" onto their hair towels when doing this.

If there is color residue on the hair towels, then the
henna has not been sufficiently rinsed from the hair.
What the vinegar has done is simply helped to rinse
more henna from the hair...and for some people,
increase shine or sheen. The vinegar can have the
effect of aiding to rinse the henna from the hair.
However, more rinsing with water or using a mild
diluted shampoo as the step prior to applying a
moisturizer will do the same thing.

The color residue on the towel is an alert that the
hair and scalp have not been rinsed sufficiently. That
can create the problems we spoke about above with the
experience of dry and brittle hair. Such residue will
also make the hair look dull rather than shiny, the
way henna and your moisturizer should leave your hair.

Do you need to take precautions for your skin?
What if you do stain your skin, can you remove that color?

Henna stains the hair and skin a bit differently. It
takes less dye release to color hair than is required
to stain the skin. Henna will stain the hair more
quickly than it will stain the skin and also will last
on the hair longer than it lasts on skin. The good
news is that henna does not stain the skin on our
face, scalp, neck and ears, as well as it stains skin
on other body parts. The skin in these areas is far to
thin for henna's liking. So while there may be some
staining, it is a stain that won't develop as stains
on other body parts tend to. So if your henna stains
your face, neck or ears, the stain is typically a
light orange for a day or few hours and then
disappears. Also it can usually be washed away with a
bit of scrubbing on the face, neck and ears where the
stain has occurred.

To avoid this, you can use a grease that repels water
on the neck, hair edges and ears to create a barrier
to stains, and also put tissue at the edge of your
plastic cap in order to prevent the henna paste from
running from beneath the cap.

So the good news is that there are things henna does
not like that can both remedy and help you get rid of
stains on the face, neck and ears. Henna's dye does
not penetrate oils and grease well. Henna stains thick
skin excellently and thin skin not well or at all.
That is why henna does not work to stain the lips or
provide designs to the face. And henna stains on skin
needs to be kept away from water for 24 hours in order
for the stain to develop. The grease when well placed
and washing the area immediately, combined with the
nature of skin on the area of the face, ears and neck
will help prevent the henna from staining and prevent
any stains from developing.

Do additions to your henna mixture, like oils,
conditioner, tea, coffee or lemon juice make your mix
more of less effective? Can they do both? For
instance, if you used lemon juice, could it increase
your color benefit, but lessen your conditioning
benefit by being overly acidic?

It totally depends upon what you use what results you
wish to obtain. Tea and coffee can provide very short
term browning/darkening of your color results
depending upon what tea or coffee you use and how
strong the brew you make. However, the dyeing ability
of these as natural dyes is very short term and the
difference they make are rarely worth the effort of
mixing them. However, they can make your paste smell

Lemon provides an acid that helps to break down the
pigment in the henna which helps the dye to release
more quickly and efficiently. So lemon juice is very
effective for this purpose. Much more so than water.
The 50/50 mixture of the lemon juice concentrate and
distilled water tends to be a good balance that does
not make its use counter-productive.

Oils can be useful or create barriers. Carrier/fixed
oils like olive oil, jojoba oil, sunflower seed oil,
etc., can be helpful in your paste for people with
very dry hair. People with oily hair will find these
oils problematic in their paste. Essential oils can
each provide some nourishing and helpful properties
that can make them desirous. However, using the wrong
essential oil or the essential oil in the wrong
quantity can create all sorts of problems. Examples
would be like rosemary essential oil that can be used
to stimulate the scalp, provide shine to the hair and
serve to make the henna stain a deeper red. However,
it should not be used by women who are expecting a
child or on children. Too much can also be irritating
to the scalp. Lavender is a better choice. Tea tree is
also healthy for the hair and scalp. But in the wrong
quantity can be irritating to the skin and the fumes
can irritate the eyes of some people�and other people
find the smell too overwhelming. The same with
cinnamon which has to be used in lesser quantities
than the rosemary, tea tree or lavender. Understanding
essential oils and how they should be used and what
they do is important when selecting to use essential

In fact, understanding each and every ingredient that
you may add to your paste is important. You want to
know that neem oil is healthy for your hair and scalp.
But also that it can be redundant when used with tea
tree. And also that it smells pretty awful. So if
smell is important�pass on the neem. You want to use
what does the job that you want to have done�and
nothing else. You also want to understand that adding
something to your paste may mean that you can
eliminate another product or process in your regimen.
You will probably want to choose between a deep
conditioning with your oils prior to your henna
application and adding oils to your paste. Too much
will alter your expected results. Do you really need
three essential oils that do the same thing? Is the
carrier/fixed oil that you select the right one for
your hair? Is it too heavy�too light�or just right?

We all know strand testing is important, so would you
mix your strand test mixture in the same way you're
going to mix your main batch, only with smaller

Yes. What you want to learn from the strand test is
what outcome to expect. So always mix your paste just
as you would mix it for your regular use, only in a
smaller amount.

Now that we know what henna is, and how it works,
what is the best way to mix your henna?

Henna is a conditioner and colorant for your hair. But
one of the things I love most about henna is that it
is also a raw material. It is the base from which you
can mix a paste to meet your own needs, wants and

The basic way to mix your henna paste would be to use
the following recipe and process:

A Basic Henna Paste for Hair Recipe

Ingredients :

Henna powder (100 grams per every 12 inches of hair)

Liquid (50/50 distilled water and lemon juice

Supplies -

Plastic gloves

Plastic cap (optional)

Designated "henna bowl"

Designated "henna towel" and other "henna clothes"

Plastic wrap (the type used to cover food)



Process :

Mix your henna powder in a plastic, ceramic or glass
bowl with sufficient lemon juice/water mix to create a
paste the consistency of thick yogurt. You want your
paste typically to be thick enough to be scooped up
with your fingers and applied to your hair. However,
you can make it a bit more thin to be applied using a
plastic bottle with tip (like the ones used by
beauticians to apply color). Stir the paste to make
sure that all of the powder is mixed with the liquid.
Cover your paste such that no light or air gets into
the container. Covering with plastic wrap and then
foil will do the job if your container does not have a
cover. Designate this as your "henna bowl." Allow your
henna paste to sit for dye release by placing it in a
place with temps at 75 to 85 degrees for between 8 and
24 hours. The length of time depends upon the amount
of henna you have mixed. Eight to 12 hours is
sufficient for 100 grams. Since most homes are not
kept at temperatures between 75 to 85 degrees, you may
want to place your paste on a warm spot in the house.
On top of the refrigerator, on a heat register, or on
a warm spot on a TV that is kept on will work. Just
know that it is the combination of warmth and time
that causes the dye to release sufficient for your

After the allotted time, uncover your paste and check
it for dye release. The released dye will appear as a
liquid or film on top of your paste. Stirring the
paste slightly will allow you to observe the
difference in color of the paste on top and the rest
of the paste in the bowl. Stir the released dye back
into the paste. You want your paste thoroughly
saturated with the dye.

When your paste is ready, apply your paste to your
hair�wearing your plastic gloves and henna gear. Once
your henna paste has been applied to hair, cover your
hair with a plastic cap. The plastic cap is optional,
but it does provide a nice warm and cozy environment
that henna loves.

In order to prevent the henna from staining your face
and ears and neck, apply some sort of grease or oil
based barrier. In order to prevent the henna paste
from running from under the plastic cap, use some
tissue at the edges of the cap.

Cover your plastic cap with a towel to provide more

Leave the paste on your hair from 2 to 8 hours. How
long it takes the henna to color your hair is
dependent upon your particular hair and the color
results you desire. How long you leave the paste on
also depends upon your personal preference. Some
people like to apply the henna at night and wash it
out in the morning. Others apply the henna during the
day. Your schedule and your particular hair needs will
dictate the length of time you leave the henna on your

When it is time to rinse the henna from your hair,
determine the easiest way and place for you to do so.
Most people find the shower easy and convenient. Rinse
thoroughly. And when you are sure that you have all of
the henna out of your hair, rinse and rinse again.

When your hair is thoroughly rinsed and the henna
paste is removed from your hair, apply your
moisturizing conditioner or oils to seal in the
moisture while your hair is still moist. Comb through
your hair with your fingers. Then proceed as usual to
style or set your hair.
Henna on your towels and clothing will leave stains
that will not come out. Henna on ceramic tiles and
sinks and showers will wash off readily and will not
stain them permanently.

Because you can make your henna experience specific
for your needs, you can choose to create your own
recipe by adding some of the following to the basic
recipe above.

Add In's:

You may choose to add essential oils that are
beneficial to your hair and scalp to your paste. Some
favorites are rosemary, lavender, tea tree, cinnamon,
patchouli, ylang ylang, jasmine or rose. Understanding
essential oils and the amount that is recommended for
use based upon the quantity of your paste is
important. So please use essential oils wisely.

You may also wish to add herbal brews to your henna
experience. To do so, make a tea brew with your
favorite herb and substitute the herbal brew for the
distilled water. Make your herbal brew with the
distilled water. Then strain the brew. You don't want
the herbs in your paste. They will just be bothersome
to pick out of your hair. Some favorite herbal brews
are made with rosemary, stinging nettle, lavender,
patchouli, chamomile, calendula, green tea, or

You may wish to substitute the distilled water with
your favorite floral water or add essential oil in, in
order to shift the smell of the henna on your hair.
Some people love the natural herby smell of henna.
Some people do not. The choice is yours. I personally
love to use rose water as my final rinse or to put a
few drops of rose essential oil in my paste.

Henna is a personal and intimate experience. Your
final results are dependent not just on the henna, but
also on your own personal chemistry. So each person's
experience is somewhat unique. Making your henna paste
unique and specific to you in ways described above
helps you to meet the specific needs of your own hair,
while making the experience pleasing by adding
fragrances that are meaningful to you.

Does using heat enhance the color and conditioning

Henna loves warmth maintained for required time in
order to stain effectively. Too much heat during the
dye release stage of the paste can kill the dye and
cook the paste and result in paste that does not

Too much heat applied while the paste is on the hair
can cause the hair to dry too quickly and therefore
stop the coloring process.

However, the right amount of heat/warmth at the right
time enhances the coloring and conditioning benefits.
To release the dye, hold the paste at 75 to 85 degrees
for 8 to 24 hours. When your paste is on your hair,
sufficient warmth is provided by your body temperature
when the plastic cap is used. If you do not use a
plastic cap, sitting in the sun, in a sauna, or warm
room will provide sufficient warmth without drying the
henna paste too quickly.

You can get the conditioning benefits with henna in 1
to 2 hours. It is the coloring that takes time.

How long should your henna stay on? Does leaving it on
overnight give any additional benefits?

The main benefit of leaving your henna on overnight
will be how the color is effected. Your hair will
obtain the conditioning benefits of henna in 1 to 2
hours. You will find out through a strand or
"harvested hair" test how long it will take for the
henna to provide desired coloring to your hair. The
time element can be different for different people.
Location and environment can also be a factor. In a
very cold place, the paste may require more time on
the hair than in a warm place. If your hair takes to
coloring fast, it will take less time for the henna to
color your hair. If your hair is resistant to
coloring, it will take more time for the henna to
color your hair. Taking red hair or light brown hair
to the desired color will take less time than taking
black or blonde hair to the desired color. So leaving
the henna on the hair overnight will indeed have
benefits for some people and not be necessary at all
for others. What you want to learn from your strand or
"harvest hair" test is what is the optimal length of
time the henna needs to remain on your hair. There is
no set time that will work for all people. But the
range is between 2 and 8 hours.

What is the best way to get the deepest, richest red

The best way to get the deepest, richest red color is
to obtain the best quality of henna powder. Henna
powder is not henna powder is not henna powder. The
quality of henna powder that you obtain is going to be
the greatest determinant of positive outcome when you
have a good recipe and process.

The best henna powder will have two important
qualities. It will be fresh and it will be well
sifted. Most henna powder that you purchase off the
shelves of stores is much older than henna powder
obtained from a supplier who imports it directly.
There can be typically as much as a 2 year difference
in the age of henna powder off the shelves from henna
powder suppliers import. Henna deteriorates with age.
Henna powder that is a year or more in age will color
your hair. But it will not provide the rich color of
henna powder that is a few months old. Suppliers who
import henna typically make sure to import henna from
the latest crop and they time their purchases to
correspond to these crops. So their henna will be
packaged a few weeks to a month prior to their
receiving it and having it available to sell.
Shipments are air transported and are in transit for a
few days.

Henna powder on store shelves, are transported by ship
and are in transit for months and months. On the
ships, they are kept in conditions that hasten henna
demise. Once they are taken from ships, they are
typically stored in warehouses for years until all of
the stock has been distributed and sold. When the
powder arrives in stores and are placed on the
shelves, they are most often already old. Will you get
some color? Yes! Will the color be the best that can
be obtained from henna? No! And unfortunately, many
people determine what henna is and what it can do by
henna powder bought off the shelves.

The other problem with off the shelf powder is also an
important one. And that is that often the person
purchasing it does not know what is actually in the
package. Because it says "henna" on the package does
not mean that what is in the package is 100% natural
henna powder�Lawsonia Inermis. Packages are
mislabeled, content misrepresented or often does not
exist. The danger of this is that some of these
products are the "henna compounds" discussed above.
Others contain synthetic dyes and are therefore
counter to the purpose of the purchase when the
purchaser is seeking a natural conditioner and dye.
And to add mystery and confusion to the mix, many
brand names sell totally different quality henna
powders in identical boxes. So how does one have a
chance of knowing what they are getting off the shelf.
The people in the stores will not have the answer for
you. They simply sell henna as one of their many items
and will not have the information the purchaser will

The short of it is, obtain the highest quality and
freshest henna powder and you will be rewarded with
deep rich color.

Once you have obtained your quality henna powder, you
need to know a few other things:

The color result you obtain when you first rinse the
henna from your hair will darken and deepen in color
over the next few days; Henna coloring darkens and deepens in color and
richness with repeat applications. The color darkens
and deepens until you obtain the peak color capacity
of the particular henna powder.
Some henna powders manufactured in different countries
are known for their color results. Persian henna
powder (Iran) is known to provide the deepest and
richest reds. Moroccan henna powder also provides deep
and rich stains that are typically a bit more
red/brown than Persian henna powders. Indian henna
powders tend to be third in deep, dark richness in
colors. However, when any of these powders are fresh,
you obtain excellent coloring. And,
The final color results obtained are dependent upon
the color of hair the henna has been applied to.

There are also other natural dyes that may be added to
enhance the color of your henna paste. Two of these
that are used for reds are hibiscus and beets root
powder. These natural dyes that can be obtained in
powder form and added to your paste, tend to shift the
color to more of a bright red rather than the more
natural coloring of red hair that natural henna

Are colored hennas as beneficial as pure red henna? If
so, which brands are best and worse?

It depends upon which one you are using. Some are
better than others in terms of color results. Some are
"colored" by dyes other than natural dyes and can
therefore be a source of synthetic dyes to the hair
and system. Some color poorly but condition well and
others condition poorly but color well. Some color and
condition excellently.

The only herbal/henna powder that I use for the
purpose of coloring my hair and the one that I have
found to be effective is the one I sell. I can only
comment on other brands based purely on feedback that
I have received from people who have used other brands
or no-brand name "colored" powders. The feedback I
have is limited to comments of others who have been
dissatisfied with other brands and used my
herbal/henna powders with satisfactory results. I
certainly have done no research to speak to brand
effectiveness�just anecdotes from people who have used
one thing or another and are still in search of
something effective.

Rather than "best" or "worse," I can only speak to
reports of effectiveness that people have shared with
me. I can only say that people have found most loose
no-brand name powders purchased from natural food or
health food stores to be probably the least effective.
Feedback on Light Mountain has been that it conditions
well but the color does not last long enough. The same
with Lush. Great conditioning but dissatisfaction with
color results. Hennalucent feedback has been mixed.
Some people loving it and others getting surprise
color results. Typically, the surprise was due to the
color indicated on the box was quite different than
the color results on the hair. But that could and
probably is a problem with color printing. The
original Hennalucent contained metallic salts that
could provide problems. So being sure which
Hennalucent one obtains would be important.
Hennalucent is also a product that is not all natural.
The other feedback has been purchasers inability to
use some of these products to color their white hair
effectively. And some products do specifically
indicate that they are not effective in coloring white

I do know that Light Mountain, Hennalucent and Lush
have a loyal customer base and therefore have to
conclude that for some people these products work
excellently. The important thing is always to find the
product that works best for you based upon what you
desire from a product.

My herbal/henna powders are a combination of 100%
natural henna powder (that provides conditioning and
coloring) or "neutral" henna powder (that provides
conditioning) and another natural dye (that provides
coloring). They are all natural and condition and
color effectively. So I would consider my own to be
the "best" for my purpose of offering an all natural
product and effective product in a range of colors
that people desire that will also provide excellent

What I would suggest for people seeking alternative
colors through a natural product, is that you read the
ingredients list and ask questions regarding anything
on the ingredients list that you do not understand.
Herbal/henna powders are sold by a number of different
companies. If one is seeking a natural way to color
and condition their hair, I recommend the herbal/henna
powders. They are uncomplicated and easy to
understand. If the package indicates "herbal/henna"
yet contains a long list of ingredients, then you are
typically dealing with something other than your
typical "herbal/henna" powder. The most complicated
ingredient list that I have ever seen for a true
herbal/henna powder contained 3 ingredients. The henna
conditions and colors and the other one or two natural
dye provides the defining color.

What if you already have red or auburn hair can a
colored henna turn your hair into a darker shade, like

The darkening of hair from a red or auburn can be
obtained with an herbal/henna powder. A natural henna
powder can only make red hair a deeper red or shift
the color of the red�and make the auburn more reddish.

Is black henna safe to use?

This takes us to the complication and confusion of the
terminology used when speaking of henna. There really
is no black henna or colored henna. Henna�natural 100%
natural henna (Lawsonia Inermis) will only color the
hair red. On the body, the range of colors include
orange, tan, burgundy, red, and dark colors like black
cherry, eggplant, burgundy/black, and a full range of
browns. But on hair, the color results will be red or
red highlights. With ineffective recipes and processes
and even old henna powder, one may get orange on light
hair. But this can be remedied with an effective
recipe, process, quality henna and a repeat

What is often referred to as "colored" henna is
typically henna with something added to it�or
something that is not henna at all. Even "neutral"
henna is not henna�but another botanical entirely.

What is referred to as "black henna" is typically one
of three things:

Henna powder that black hair dye has been added to.
This is used on the hair and unfortunately, also used
by people to provide designs on skin. The hair dye
included typically contains PPD. Sometimes it is Bigen
hair dye�which is almost purely PPD. This is not good
to use on the hair or the skin due to the allergic
reactions that are possible and also due the
sensitivity to dyes that can develop over time with
constant and prolonged use. If one is seeking a
natural product, then the synthetic dyes in these
products makes this not desirable. The health
consequences should also be a major concern.

Pure synthetic hair dye�PPD. The concerns are the same
as for henna powder to which black hair die has been

Indigo has been referred to as "black henna" in many
countries and cultures long before people in the West
began to use anything referred to as henna. Indigo is
a natural dye. However, it is not henna�Lawsonia
Inermis. It is another natural dye and botanical

Products used for the hair to provide coloring and/or
conditioning have long been referred to as some type
of "henna" in many societies simply as a way to
differentiate between the effect the item would have
on the hair. Neutral henna referred to the
plants/powder used to provide conditioning but not
color to the hair. Natural or "Red" henna was the term
used to refer to the plant/powder that would color the
hair red while conditioning the hair. Black henna was
used as the term to refer to the plant/powder that
would color the hair black but had no conditioning
properties. This plant/powder was typically indigo.
Indigo does not contain PPD�is safe to use on the
hair�is typically used with natural henna or neutral
henna to make herbal/henna powder in the color black.
So "black henna" is safe to use on hair only when it
is referring to Indigo.

What makes the various dyes "safe" or "not safe" has a
lot to do with how intrusive the dye can be to the
system on which it is applied. How intrusive is
determined by how effectively the dye can saturate the
skin. Does it pretty much sit on top of the skin and
not penetrate beyond the top layer such as Indigo? If
so, it washes off readily and does not leave deep
coloring. Does it saturate the top two layers but go
no further into the system�as safe dyes like henna?
Does it saturate the top layers and penetrate deeper
into the system and find it's way into the blood
stream such as PPD? And if it can reach the blood
system, what effect does it have on the body? These
are the considerations.

What is known is that PPD can and does enter the
system and can cause problems that minimally are
development of varying degrees of sensitivity to
specific dyes or to all dyes. A common reaction to PPD
is contact dermatitis. A raising of bumps and
blistering of the skin that itches severely and burns
such that scarring of the area of contact is possible.
Such bumps, blistering, and itching reactions are
indication that the individual has a sensitivity to
PPD. It is also an indication that the individual may
now be sensitive to all dyes, and may experience other
health issues. Contact dermatitis has been directly
linked to PPD. It is speculated that other severe
health issues may also be connected to the use of PPD.
Obvious reactions to PPD may not and most often will
not occur with the first application. The reaction and
sensitivity can develop over time. Not everyone will
have a reaction. But the problem is that you don't
know how many applications it takes�one or many, many
hundreds. Nor do you know if you are one of the ones
who will have a reaction.

Sometimes the reactions are confused with the results
of other hair procedures. Sometimes bumps, pimples and
blistering on the scalp are attributed to other
products or procedures. Sometimes hair loss is
attributed to other products or procedures. Sometimes
sudden rashes and skin and health problems are never
connected to allergies to dyes or other possible
effects of the PPD. Too many doctors are unaware of
the effects of PPD. Far more are totally in the dark
concerning how to diagnose or treat patients who have
been effected by the use of PPD. Most often you will
need to know the potential dangers and the signs and
symptoms so you can take information to your doctor to
help them provide appropriate treatment.

There has been speculation on the ill effects of the
use of PPD long before PPD was used in henna paste for
body art. But the visibility of the reactions when PPD
is used in paste for body art has brought more
attention to the issue. Such connections have long
been made regarding the use of PPD in hair dyes.
Despite the connections, such hair dyes containing PPD
remain on the shelves of grocery stores, drug stores
and beauty supply stores. A warning on labels
regarding possible allergic reactions and
recommendations for testing and discontinued use if an
allergic reaction occurs is the consumers strongest
indication that PPD is in the hair dye product. Take

If you see a "henna" product for hair with such a
warning on the label, it contains PPD. If it is
referred to as "black henna" and does not indicate on
the label or elsewhere that it is indigo, then it is
most probably PPD. PPD is not safe to use.

Unfortunately, so much of the debate concerning "black
henna" has been replete with scare tactics, denial, or
over reaching, that the most important point gets lost
and confused. And that point is that the culprit that
you want to look out for is PPD. No matter how it is
labeled or packaged or where it is sold or how long it
has been sold or how many beauticians are willing to
put on their plastic gloves and apply it to our
heads�the culprit to avoid is PPD. PPD is not safe to

For those who may have some henna plants, can you use
the fresh ground leaves for henna hair applications?
If so, should you soak it just as you would dried
henna powder? How much of the fresh ground leaves
should you use?

You can use fresh ground leaves just as you would
dried henna leaves or henna powder. Leaves from your
plant is about as fresh as you can get. Fresh henna is
always a good thing� You don't want to soak either
your fresh leaves or your henna powder. You do want to
make a paste that you would apply to your hair. One
thing that you will experience using your own fresh
leaves is the difficulty rinsing out the pieces of the
leaves in your paste. Unless you let your leaves
dry�crush and grind them�then sift them extremely well
to obtain ultra sifted powder, then you will have to
deal with the pieces left in your hair after rinsing.
Most people do not want to deal with this.

In order to do your hair, you would need far more
henna leaves than you will obtain at one time from
your plant. I am assuming that like most people you
have one to three henna plants that are growing slowly
indoors. If this is what you have, you could strip
your plant(s) and still not have enough paste for a
typical head of hair. And when you strip your plant of
all its leaves, your plant will die. I see henna
plants sort of like pets, rather than like a reliable
source of sufficient henna leaves/powder to do your

Consider a coffee mug to represent 100 grams of henna
powder. Then consider how many leaves it would take to
fill that mug once you have dried them, crushed them
and then sifted adequately. If you purchased your
henna plant(s), you will find that to be a pretty
expensive endeavor that will leave you without the
money spent for the plant(s), the plant�as well as
plants to get more henna from.

However, if you are fortunate enough to live in an
environment where henna grows or can grow outdoors and
henna plants are plentiful, then you can indeed
harvest sufficient leaves to do your hair without
damaging your plants/bushes.

People from all over the world visit our boards, can
you tell me if there are any hair types that should
not use henna, or do you find it to work on all the
various hair types?

This one is easy� Henna works on all hair types. It
will condition and color all hair types.

If someone didn't want to change their natural hair
color, but did want the benefits of henna, what do you
suggest they use? Are neutral hennas effective?

Yes, neutral henna�while not henna�is effective to
condition the hair. There are many many natural herbs
and botanicals that are sold as powder that are
beneficial for conditioning the hair in one way or the
other. I like to combine varieties of herbs and
botanicals based upon their conditioning properties to
obtain a product that provides the best results for
the hair. I would suggest products like Lotus Powder
Plus that I sell, and neutral henna that I sell, and
is also easily obtained from many other sources.
Cedarvale and From Nature with Love each carry neutral

For those who find the process of traditional powdered
henna too messy to apply, are there any other henna
options for them?

For both the coloring and conditioning benefits of
henna, there is no way to avoid the paste and its
nature. Using henna requires preparation and time. It
doesn't fit well in to a busy hurried life style. And
the faster one tries to use their henna and apply
their paste and rinse out their paste, the messier it
becomes�the more frustrating the process�and the less
satisfying the results.

Using henna requires a "change of mind." It requires
the same sort of change of mind and provides similar
satisfaction to switching from instant coffee to
brewing your own coffee from freshly ground coffee
beans that you selected in order to have the
experience you desired. There is something about
smelling coffee brewing and permeating your home that
reminds you that somethings are to be savored and
sipped and not rushed.

Henna is so messy. So I put newspaper on the bathroom
floor as I apply it�wear my henna clothing�give
myself a facial�do my nails�relax and enjoy the fact
for this time I have allotted to the henna
application, I belong to me and not to the world. When
I am rinsing the henna from my hair, I also remove the
hair from my legs and such. When I have rinsed my hair
thoroughly, I apply my oils to my moist hair�shower
and apply my favorite blend of oils to my body. I
integrate the henna application into my "me" time. In
a busy world and busy life, I sometimes need the
excuse to take such time out for me. So the messiness
is for me, henna's gift and invitation to stay longer
and feel the warm water�take in aromas that I love and
use oils that I know are beneficial. It slows me down
and makes me take a day for myself. The world has to
wait that day. And when I am finished, I love my hair
and my skin and my relaxed self�

What a wonderful mindset! It reminds me of what my
baby sister says... "It's a woman's duty to be a
beauty." And of course this doesn't mean we have to
look any certain way, rather to simply take time to
take care of ourselves! I've never really thought of
"henna time" as a part of this, but now I will!

Maureen, I have one last question before we wrap
things up. If you are a first time user and you don't
like your henna color results, what is the safest way
to remove henna color? I've heard of people saying to
use mineral oil or deep conditioners mixed with
Crystal Light or baking soda. Are any of these safe
and effective?

I strongly recommend the strand test or harvest hair
test so that there are not great surprises from the
use of henna. Typically, the color results that people
do not like are hair that is too orange or brassy
looking. Those colors can be altered easily. Too
orange or light orange typically happen on light or
gray hair on which old henna or henna paste made with
an incorrect recipe or process are used. Obtaining
fresh and quality henna powder will deepen the color
and take it to red. Sometimes it requires a repeat
application to get the color results desired. Brassy
hair color is often remedied with time. The color of
the hair at paste removal is not the color the hair
will remain. The hair will darken in color. Waiting a
couple of days has often made people who were
initially dissatisfied with their hair coloring either
more satisfied or happy with their results.

If the color result is red when you wanted a more
reddish/brown, brown, dark brown or black, then what
you required was the two step process discussed above.
You simply need to obtain the correct color to make
the color correction.

If however, you just decide that the color is not for
you, you can try the above mentioned items. But none
of them have been known to strip the henna from the
hair for most people. Henna needs to fade out and that
takes time. Exposure to the sun, swimming in chlorine
or salt water, and applying lemon juice will lighten
the henna some. But it does not take all of the color

So, I recommend that anyone not sure of what effect
they will get with henna and not sure if they will
like the results�please perform a strand test or
harvested hair test on strands of the hair that is not
readily visible or hair that you harvest from your
comb or brush.

Using henna or deciding to switch to henna is a
commitment. It is a commitment to the process and the
time it takes, and yep�the messiness. But is also
rewarding. Henna provides a natural and safe
alternative to harsh chemicals. With henna, as with
anything to which you are about to commit, do your
investigation�get clear on what you can and should
expect, as well as what you cannot and should not
expect�seek out people who have good experiences with
henna and find out how they make henna work for them.
Henna users will usually be all too glad to share
their experience with you.

I am also always willing to talk henna with you. Email
me: Reneeskiln@aol.com with any questions or just to
have a henna chat.

Maureen, it's been a real pleasure getting to know you, and learning so much about henna! Thank you for taking the time to share with us!

To place an order with Maureen, or simply to just look around, visit Everyday Mehndi


17/33.50/35+ Type 2CMii (3B underneath layer) Somewhat fine, slightly wavy (with curls on the underneath layer), Hennaed Auburn. To see more pictures, click on the gallery collection link found here:
Forever Fox

"Watch your thoughts, for they become words. Choose your words, for they become actions. Understand your actions, for they become habits. Study your habits, they will become your character. Develop your character for it becomes your destiny." -John MacArthur

Products Used:
Aubrey Organics S&C
Nature's Gate Conditioners (As well as Forest Pure, another brand made by the makers of Nature's Gate)
Vinegar/herbal rinses

Oils: Jojoba, Sweet Almond, Virgin Oil de Coco Creme, Monoi, Castor, Meadowfoam Seed & essential oils

Shea Butter (from which I make my own leave-in)
MP Popular Mix Brush
Wood and Horn combs
Vitamins/Minerals/Herbal supplements

This message has been edited by pictures on May 13, 2006 1:41 AM

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