Are you considering using Henna to promote hair growth? Well, before you jump on this trend read this article to understand the disadvantages of applying henna on hair. Here is the summary;
Disadvantages of applying Henna on hair
- Application process results in a huge mess as it stains everything
- May result in uneven coloring
- Preparation and application can be time consuming
- Some people report drying of the hair after application
- Difficult to apply evenly on hair
- Color correcting tends to be very difficult
- May darken hair over time
Read on for more disadvantages of applying henna on your hair including tips on how to manage the negative effects of Henna on hair.
Also, to be fair, we will do another article on benefits of henna on hair so you have a balanced view. Look out for the article in the coming weeks!
10 Disadvantages of applying Henna on hair
1. Application process results in a huge mess as it stains everything
Henna is a natural dye and therefore colors anything that comes in contact with it. When applying henna, it may drip onto the floor, on the clothes you are wearing and if you are using your bare hands, they will get stained too.
Here are some tips to counter this challenge
- Apply henna outside on natural ground or you can cover your floor with newspaper, plastic paper, or rags that you do not mind getting stained. You can also wear a t-shirt that you don’t value very much.
- To avoid coloring your neck and your scalp, apply petroleum jelly to act as a barrier between your skin and the henna.
- Protect your hands by wearing gloves or use a hair dye brush to apply on your hair.
2. May result in uneven coloring
The uneven coloring of henna on your hair depends on the following factors:
- How you apply it on your hair
- How much time you leave it on your hair
- How you mixed the henna
(i) How you apply it on your hair
Applying henna on your own without any help may result to uneven coloring. This is because you may not cover all your hair strands.
To avoid this, ensure you section your hair into small manageable sections that will allow you to get the henna on each and every strand. Better still, you can have a friend help you out or go to a hair salon.
(ii) How much time you leave it on your hair
During the application process, one part of your head may have henna on for a longer period than another part of your head.
(iii) How you mixed the Henna
When mixing henna, it gets a mud-like consistency and therefore can have lumps. Therefore, if you apply it, you may not cover all your hair strands as you had hoped to.
To avoid this, you can mix your henna with apple cider vinegar to have a smooth and fluid consistency.
3. Preparation and application can be time consuming
During the mixing process, you should leave the mixture covered for at least 8-12 hours so that the henna can be effective.
In addition, during henna application, you have to leave the paste on the hair for at least 4-6 hours in order to get their desired results.
Lastly, the process of washing it off is also time consuming as you need to wash off the henna carefully without rushing the process to ensure no henna is left in the hair.
Henna in its powder form cannot color anything. It contains hennocides, lawsone precursors that can only be activated when henna is mixed into a paste. For these precursors to be released, they need time as they are the ones that bond with your hair to color it. 
4. Some people report drying of the hair after application
This is a temporary effect and goes after a while. The feeling of dryness is contributed by how you wash your hair and how the cuticles behave on henna application.
The outer layer of your hair is made up of keratin. The lawsone precursors of henna move to the keratin layer therefore strengthening your hair and making your hair cuticles plump. This leaves a dry feeling after henna application.
If you do not wash your hair well, the henna clings itself onto your hair and therefore your hair will feel drier and grittier. To completely wash off all the henna from your hair you can:
- Fill a basin, sink or your bathtub with water.
- Dip your hair into the water and run your fingers through your hair until it feels smooth, or your hands can run through your hair freely.
- Drain the water.
- Use a shampoo and conditioner on hair then rinse off.
To reverse the dry effect, you can put a hydrating mask on your hair, such as honey.
Read this article to learn about home remedies for dry and frizzy hair for more options.
5. Difficult to apply evenly on hair
When henna is mixed into a paste, it has a mud-like consistency. As a result, some lumps may form while mixing the paste. This makes it difficult to distribute the henna evenly on your hair and thus making the application process difficult.
To avoid the lumps, you can add some apple cider vinegar to the mixture. This will help you achieve a smooth and fluid consistency of your henna paste.
6. Color correcting tends to be very difficult
Some henna brands are not pure and may contain metallic salts that cause irreversible changes to your hair.
Supposing you hate the results of the henna color change, unfortunately reserving or color correctly is not easy or immediate because of the following reasons:
- You have to wait a while before using conventional hair dyes to avoid damaging your hair
- Henna completely covers the hair strands making it difficult for commercial dyes to penetrate the hair
7. May darken hair over time
During the application of henna, henna oxidizes to color your hair. The longer you let it oxidize, the darker the shade will be.
Also, continuous use of henna on your hair makes it darker and darker. As a result, putting a lighter shade of dye afterwards can be a challenge.
8. The smell of Henna may linger in your hair for a while
Henna naturally has a grassy and earthy smell. This smell will linger on your hair for a while.
To alleviate the henna smell, you can add scented essential oils such as rosemary or jasmine into the mixture.
9. After Henna application, you have to wait a while before using conventional hair dyes
Henna generally coats all your hair strands during application. This makes it difficult for other conventional dyes to penetrate to your hair. As a result, you have to wait a while before transitioning to conventional hair dyes.
10. May result in loss/reduction of curls
Henna generally strengthens your hair strands after application. The henna molecules bind to your hair keratin and therefore hair is strengthened and reinforced. As a result, your hair losses its curls. To avoid the loss of curls, you can use Amla before or after henna application on your hair.
On Loss of curls, hear it directly from Lfe Ife360TV Naturally:
She stopped using henna because her hair started to wear out and get frizzy. Aside from that, she lost her curls. She used to apply henna every once in a month, then she spread out to every 6 weeks, then 8 weeks until she completely stopped.
Here is her video:
There you have it guys, have you tried henna before? What was your experience like? Let us know in the comments below.
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