If you are trying to incorporate more environmentally friendly ways into your routines, you may think having your hair colored might not be an option.
There are, however, natural ways to subtly color or brighten your hair at home using things that may already be in the pantry.
If you want to change the looks of your locks but aren’t up for chemical treatments try the following tips for naturally tinted hair.
Red and auburn shades can use the juice from vegetables like carrots and beets, or crimson fruits like pomegranates to saturate the hair strands.
Brunette hair can be enriched with a mixture of boiled, cooled sage leaves or tag alder bark and used weekly as a rinse to deepen hair color. For darker tresses, the extracts of ground walnut shells or coffee beans can be steeped in boiled water. Once cooled, hair can be soaked in the liquid to create a stain.
Lighter shades or blondes can benefit from herbal or floral rinses. Brewed, cooled blends of organic chamomile tea leaves, rhubarb, calendula, saffron or turmeric can all bring out blonde highlights. Pour the mixture over clean, wet or dry hair and let it remain for at least an hour or overnight. Also, the juice from lemons can be diluted with water and spritzed on hair before going outdoors to lighten up strands with some help from the sun.
The blends may stain clothing so have a towel handy to catch any spills, and clean countertops, tubs or sinks immediately. Even though it is not permanent be sure to do a test with a strand of hair before pouring mixtures over the whole head. Depending on the strength of the rinse it may wash out with the first shampoo or last a little longer.
Experiment with organically grown, botanically based ingredients, maybe even blending together different items to find a suitable shade. Tea leaves, which come in endless varieties that make infusions resulting in an assortment of hues, can be used on most shades to complement existing color and to add dimension.
A few drops of essential oils, like coconut oil, can be added to mixtures before rinsing through hair for an added conditioning scent. Hair can also be rinsed with apple cider vinegar and cool water to add shine and neutralize tone. Herbs like mint and rosemary can be soaked in boiling water, cooled and poured over hair for an invigorating scalp treatment which will also give strands a healthy texture.
Using natural ingredients to stain hair allows the flexibility to change your look without a permanent color commitment. As chemicals are not part of the process, your hair, scalp and skin will not be exposed to damaging compounds. After an organically based rinse, hair will likely be shinier and feel more manageable, too.
Shepard, R. March-April, 1982. For Natural Hair Color, Color Your Hair with Natural Dyes. Retrieved from: MotherEarthNews
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