In desperation, to cover the greys, I decided to colour my hair with an ammonia free colour in a shade closest to my natural hair colour. Once the roots started to grow, I noticed that the number of greys had multiplied! So it was back to colouring and each time the number of greys just seemed to increase. Quite a vicious cycle. (I know a lot of hair colours, regular and ammonia-free, claim that colouring doesn't turn your hair grey, but it happened with me. Perhaps mine is an exceptional case and it might not happen with you. Just thought I'd inform you all).
So, I was on a quest to find something natural that would help me colour my hair but without harmful chemicals. I tried the Lush Caca Noir but it had absolutely not effect on greys. Recently though, my sister-in-law found the perfect solution when she visited her sister in Chennai, Kaca Natural Hair Darkener. (She too has experienced this "hair colour leading to grey hair" phenomenon.)
It is basically a two step process in which you apply the henna first and then the darkener the same day or the next day. The darkener turns the red hennaed hair to a dark brown/black.
I checked the ingredient list and was very pleasantly surprised to see absolutely natural ingredients. I googled them and here's what I found.
Acacia Catechu - Kattha, it is generally used in paan to give the red colour and flavour.
Eclipta Alba - Bhringraj. It has been used since centuries in India in hair oil to maintain lustrous black hair.
Hibiscus Rosa Sinensis - Hibiscus or shoe flower. This too is commonly used in hair care.
Emblica Officinalis - Amla......need I say more?
Indigo - Indigo. This explains the dark brown/black colour.
Lawsonia - Henna
Murraya Koenigii - Neem leaves. Help in retaining natural hair pigmentation and stimulating hair growth.
Terminalia Chebula - Haritaki or Harad. Very effective in controlling hair fall. Triphala is a product made from this.
You too can google these terms. There's a ton of information available on each ingredient.
I know the pictures aren't that great. The package had got a bit squashed in her bags and I thought it would be better if I took the pics with the cellophane on. Hmmmm...wasn't a very good idea.
One pack costs Rs. 276 and contains 4 single application packets, two of the henna (brown base) and two of the indigo (darkener) along with a pair of gloves and a small tub of hair conditioner. The ingredients of the conditioner aren't mentioned.
The biggest problem with this is that it is extremely time consuming and extremely messy. If you have ever applied henna to your hair, you will know how long you have to keep the henna on your hair, how uncomfortable it is and what a pain it is to rinse it all off! Now multiply that by two because once you do it with the henna, you have to repeat with the indigo!!! And let me not even get started on the smell. Yes, there are some who love the smell of henna, but I doubt anyone will like the smell of indigo.
So, using this to colour your hair requires major planning of your schedule and keeping time aside for the application and washing. And of course you can't run any errands with that goop on your head. I call a lady home who is super fast at applying henna on the hair and does a very good job of it coz I honestly can't do it on my own.
I used this on my hair a fortnight ago and I did the indigo the same evening. So basically, I was walking around the house with this goop on my hair the whole day!!! Personally, I feel this trouble and inconvenience is worth it coz of the lovely natural dark colour I got, not to mention that it made my rough hair smoother and shinier. (Actually, that could also be due to the new shampoo and conditioner that I've started using...will review those soon.) I am so glad that I have found a natural, chemical free solution to cover my greys.
The conditioner that comes with this was quite useless (my opinion...you might like it) so I used this new one that I mentioned. Also, I didn't shampoo my hair the same day, so for two days, I had flakes of this coming off the scalp into my comb and hair brush. The third day, I oiled my hair and washed the next morning. I admit the whole process is very tedious and cumbersome but I don't mind it. I really don't want to damage my hair with further colouring and I like my hair to be lustrous black. (Can't help it, have grown up on a steady diet of Indian mythology where all princesses or even the daughters of Rishis had jet black shiny hair.) In face of these time constraints, I know the chemical hair colour will seem more appealing to many of you. But if at all you want a natural solution to greys, get this.
My hair is not styled in this pic. You can see the colour as well as the natural texture of my hair without any serums etc. The roots are beginning to show though.
Availability is a major, MAJOR issue with this. As far as I know, it is available only at Health n Glow stores in Chennai. I searched for it online but couldn't find an online retailer, just came across it on indiamart.com which is a wholeseller. If you have relatives or friends who can send it to you, then you're lucky. Or you could try to email them your order. Their website too isn't opening on my ipad (my laptop has gone to tech heaven so have to get a new one soon).
Have any of you or your relatives tried this? I'm quite happy with this after just one round of colouring. Would you like to go for this time consuming hair colour method?
PS-I've changed the image resolution to medium and yet the pics are being published x large. What to do???