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  1. #1
    Iron Maiden fidelia's Avatar
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    Default Natural hair dye

    I've been exploring ways to cover my bit of grey. I don't want to use chemical dye, there aren't a lot of great natural options that come in a box, and I don't want to commit to henna just yet.

    Last night I tried paprika and coffee. I should have included apple cider vinegar to help with covering the greys, but think I will try it again tonight. Have any of you tried using natural options (sage, paprika, cinnamon, coffee, tea, walnut shells) and if so, do you have any particular feedback or advice? I was pleased with the result, although it was kind of messy and the liquid was more runny than I would have liked. Online it just suggests dipping your hair and rinsing it in coffee, but I chose to put honey and conditioner with the coffee (but it was still pretty runny, even with a bag over my hair and towels to catch the drips).

  2. #2
    As Long As It Takes.... Redbone's Avatar
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    Have you tried henna?

    I used to use a "clear" one because it has a mild relaxing/straightening affect on curly hair. Unfortunately, it can be a problem for those with sensitive skin. I eventually developed a contact dermatitis from it. But I still think it's less likely to cause a problem then chemical dyes (?).

    I can give you a name of a good vendor if you want to try it.

  3. #3
    Temporal Mechanic. Lexicon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Redbone View Post
    Have you tried henna?

    I used to use a "clear" one because it has a mild relaxing/straightening affect on curly hair. Unfortunately, it can be a problem for those with sensitive skin. I eventually developed a contact dermatitis from it. But I still think it's less likely to cause a problem then chemical dyes (?).

    I can give you a name of a good vendor if you want to try it.
    I read somewhere that people who use henna can't go in MRI machines..

    *imagines [exaggeratedly] horrific results*
    03/23 06:06:58 EcK: lex
    03/23 06:06:59 EcK: lex
    03/23 06:21:34 Nancynobullets: LEXXX *sacrifices a first born*
    03/23 06:21:53 Nancynobullets: We summon yooouuu
    03/23 06:29:07 Lexicon: I was sleeping!



    04/25 04:20:35 Patches: Don't listen to lex. She wants to birth a litter of kittens. She doesnt get to decide whats creepy

    02/16 23:49:38 ygolo: Lex is afk
    02/16 23:49:45 Cimarron: she's doing drugs with Jack

    03/05 19:27:41 Time: You can't make chat morbid. Lex does it naturally.

  4. #4
    Emperor/Dictator kyuuei's Avatar
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    Essential oil of grapefruit and lemon mixed with some emulisfier and apple cider vinegar will lighten hair.. Though, I don't know how much gray can be covered with natural solutions. Honestly, gray is pretty prominent in the hair.. coffee tricks may work if used continuously, but it might be more of a pain in the ass than you're looking for.

    May I suggest a semi-permanent dye? They sell them for around $5 at beauty shops, and those have come with amazing results. I use this on my mother's hair, and her gray gets covered and (best of all) when it does fade it fades out of ALL of the hair, not just at the roots when hair is growing, so it is a more even fade.. so if you're too lazy to keep up with it, it isn't going to look like slices of the grand canyon. I know it isn't the most natural, but it isn't as harsh as chemicals, it's cheaper than chemicals, and if you don't wash your hair frequently it can last quite a while for the money... and it's way easier to apply than henna and natural solutions.

    Spoiler contains my history with henna so far.



    Oh. I also went in an MRI machine just fine.
    Kantgirl: Just say "I'm feminine and I'll punch anyone who says otherwise!"
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  5. #5
    Temporal Mechanic. Lexicon's Avatar
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    I know you've expressed you're reluctant to use chemical dyes, but if you ever go that route.. Revlon Colorsilk is pretty gentle/consistent. That's what I use. My hair feels healthier after I've used it. Which I suppose isn't truly accurate. Hair is dead, no matter what. But the feel and quality of my hair was improved. It's ammonia-free which is a plus on the smell-factor of other chemical dyes, and it also makes the coloring process itself gentler on the scalp/hair.
    03/23 06:06:58 EcK: lex
    03/23 06:06:59 EcK: lex
    03/23 06:21:34 Nancynobullets: LEXXX *sacrifices a first born*
    03/23 06:21:53 Nancynobullets: We summon yooouuu
    03/23 06:29:07 Lexicon: I was sleeping!



    04/25 04:20:35 Patches: Don't listen to lex. She wants to birth a litter of kittens. She doesnt get to decide whats creepy

    02/16 23:49:38 ygolo: Lex is afk
    02/16 23:49:45 Cimarron: she's doing drugs with Jack

    03/05 19:27:41 Time: You can't make chat morbid. Lex does it naturally.

  6. #6
    Iron Maiden fidelia's Avatar
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    My sister has used henna and it looked really good on her at first, but now that she has more grey, it looks a little artificial. I looked into henna and even went so far as to buy Lush's Caca Brun (she just uses the straight red henna powder). However, after looking at some results on the internet, I felt like a lot of people's hair had a slight purpleish tinge, which I definitely don't want (is this because it contains indigo and they just didn't leave it on long enough?)! I like my natural hair colour, but I also am getting enough grey that I can't pull it out anymore. The other problem with henna is that the results are unpredictable. Even if it turns out fabulously once, it doesn't seem to be consistent. Plus if you don't like it, you can't dye over it. The other concern I have with henna is its straightening effect. I have wavy/curly hair and I find it is a lot easier to deal with the curlier it is. (If I remember right Redbone, you have super curly hair, so my guess is that it just would make it more manageable, no?) I like being able to just scrunch it and go. If it was straighter, it would just be a slight bit bendy (enough to look messy), without being straight or curly. I never knew there was such a thing as clear henna!

    I have considered semi permanent, but it seems all but impossible to find it on drug store shelves and mostly hair salons do not sell boxed dyes. Would somewhere like Sally's Beauty Supply have it? We don't have one in my town, but there is one I could check out a couple of hours away when I go into town next. I like the idea of it as it is gentle with less chemicals, and it doesn't require the same kind of commitment should you decide to grow it out. kyuuei, you have the most gorgeous kind of red hair colour. Why are you colouring it???

    Good to know about the Revlon Coloursilk. There are such a lot of different choices, and it's kind of hard to know where to start. I haven't dyed my hair in the past either. I tend to have sensitive skin. I know that you're supposed to do a strand test every time and yet I can't imagine taking the time to do that! Maybe it's non-negotiable though...Lexicon, did you feel like the results look pretty natural? Your hair sure looks nice in your pictures!

    I don't really want anything that is going to darken my hair a whole ton, as I kind of tend towards Morticia Adamsness anyway! I like the colour that the coffee and paprika gave and would be willing to do something like that weekly if I thought that it would be effective. I don't know. Maybe I'll try it again with ACV and if that doesn't work, start in on some of the options that you guys have suggested.

  7. #7
    likes this gromit's Avatar
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    Someone on here, can't recall who, posted before about adjusting the ratio of straight-up henna (reddish orange) with indigo (dark purplish blue) to get the proper shade to match your hair color, ordering the two pure ingredients and then mixing the ratio yourself. I was intrigued but then I heard about the curl relaxing thing and wasn't so sure, as my hair is probably similar to yours in terms of texture @fidelia
    Your kisses, sweeter than honey. But guess what, so is my money.

  8. #8
    Temporal Mechanic. Lexicon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fidelia View Post
    My sister has used henna and it looked really good on her at first, but now that she has more grey, it looks a little artificial. I looked into henna and even went so far as to buy Lush's Caca Brun (she just uses the straight red henna powder). However, after looking at some results on the internet, I felt like a lot of people's hair had a slight purpleish tinge, which I definitely don't want (is this because it contains indigo and they just didn't leave it on long enough?)! I like my natural hair colour, but I also am getting enough grey that I can't pull it out anymore. The other problem with henna is that the results are unpredictable. Even if it turns out fabulously once, it doesn't seem to be consistent. Plus if you don't like it, you can't dye over it. The other concern I have with henna is its straightening effect. I have wavy/curly hair and I find it is a lot easier to deal with the curlier it is. (If I remember right Redbone, you have super curly hair, so my guess is that it just would make it more manageable, no?) I like being able to just scrunch it and go. If it was straighter, it would just be a slight bit bendy (enough to look messy), without being straight or curly. I never knew there was such a thing as clear henna!

    I have considered semi permanent, but it seems all but impossible to find it on drug store shelves and mostly hair salons do not sell boxed dyes. Would somewhere like Sally's Beauty Supply have it? We don't have one in my town, but there is one I could check out a couple of hours away when I go into town next. I like the idea of it as it is gentle with less chemicals, and it doesn't require the same kind of commitment should you decide to grow it out. kyuuei, you have the most gorgeous kind of red hair colour. Why are you colouring it???

    Good to know about the Revlon Coloursilk. There are such a lot of different choices, and it's kind of hard to know where to start. I haven't dyed my hair in the past either. I tend to have sensitive skin. I know that you're supposed to do a strand test every time and yet I can't imagine taking the time to do that! Maybe it's non-negotiable though...Lexicon, did you feel like the results look pretty natural? Your hair sure looks nice in your pictures!

    I don't really want anything that is going to darken my hair a whole ton, as I kind of tend towards Morticia Adamsness anyway! I like the colour that the coffee and paprika gave and would be willing to do something like that weekly if I thought that it would be effective. I don't know. Maybe I'll try it again with ACV and if that doesn't work, start in on some of the options that you guys have suggested.

    Mine came out really natural looking with Revlon compared to other dyes I've tried; I used brown-black(#20), which is the darkest before straight black, as that's fairly close to my natural hair color. I'm somewhere between very dark brown, and brown-black. I'm scaling back to the dark brown shade(#30), just to distance myself from any potential typecasting [with regard to acting stuff] - pale chicks with the black/near-black hair always seem to get mashed into the Morticia Adams/alternative roles.
    Anyway, the transition's been going fine. The dark brown shade is very rich/natural looking, without there being any confusion on the tone, in different lighting (with the darker shade, my hair only appeared 'brown' to most people in bright sunlight).

    I have extremely sensitive skin, & never broke out into any rashes/had irritation. I've never done the strand tests. I pretty much go over my whole head with a box of the stuff about every 4-6 weeks, and that keeps the gray away. Never had issues with the color distributing unevenly or highlighting red tones too much [which creates what people call a 'brassy' effect, I believe].

    I've had a lot of experience with hair color in the past (I was electric blue with black tips at one point, long ago)- but I'm still an amateur. I do feel like I've had some experiences with harsher products, though- and so I base my comparison for how gentle the Revlon dye is on that contrast.

    Thing to remember with dye is that you can always go darker, but it's a pain to go lighter. So for you, I'd probably recommend the #30 dye to see how it suits you, or whatever brown tone seems closest to your natural one but lightest on the spectrum they offer. Their site may have a color guide test, that may be useful. I forget. A few brands do that, & they're fairly accurate. But yeah, when in doubt, go lighter, cuz if it's too light, you can always go back over it in a couple weeks with a shade deeper. Some people re-color right away, but I tend to feel like that's a lot of stress on the hair, scalp, etc.. even with a gentle formula. Also, drugstores tend to have little hair strand swatches on the shelves below each shade, and for this brand, I've found them very accurate.

    Kyuuei mentions a useful thing- putting a bit of vaseline around your hairline [& I do it on my ears] will save you from staining your skin.
    Sometimes I substitute the vaseline for just applying a green clay mud mask to my face, it blocks the dye just the same. I rinse it off in the shower with the dye.. and in the interim, I terrify anyone in my proximity.
    03/23 06:06:58 EcK: lex
    03/23 06:06:59 EcK: lex
    03/23 06:21:34 Nancynobullets: LEXXX *sacrifices a first born*
    03/23 06:21:53 Nancynobullets: We summon yooouuu
    03/23 06:29:07 Lexicon: I was sleeping!



    04/25 04:20:35 Patches: Don't listen to lex. She wants to birth a litter of kittens. She doesnt get to decide whats creepy

    02/16 23:49:38 ygolo: Lex is afk
    02/16 23:49:45 Cimarron: she's doing drugs with Jack

    03/05 19:27:41 Time: You can't make chat morbid. Lex does it naturally.

  9. #9
    Iron Maiden fidelia's Avatar
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    Lol! I never thought of doing a face mask. I also wanted to ask, when you dye your hair, does it stain your scalp? If so, how do you get that off?

  10. #10
    As Long As It Takes.... Redbone's Avatar
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    Not just super curly, it grows in literal coils so it was nice to have those loosened up a bit for a little more length (hair shrinkage thing).

    It's not really henna. It's sold under "clear henna" but it's actually cassia that I used on my hair. I can't imagine what my hair would look like if I used real henna on it.

    It is hard to get consistent results using a natural product. I have the same problems cropping up with the herbs and the eo's I use. And as kyuuei said, it is a real mess to use. Like what you described in your op but magnified by a factor of 10...especially when you go to try and rinse it out. It seems like using a semi-permanent dye would give you what you're looking for with better results and less hassle.

    You guys make me want to go out and experiment with coloring my hair. I've never done it.

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