itchy scalp from henna - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 15 Old 01-06-2006, 11:59 PM - Thread Starter
 
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i have been using henna for several months, so why is it not nourishing like all of the information i read says? has anyone else experienced itchy scalp from henna? am i correct in thinking apple cider vinegar will help?
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#2 of 15 Old 01-07-2006, 03:18 AM
 
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Hair is dead, therefor does not absorb "nourishment".

What vinegar will probably do is to fade the henna more quickly. According to a henna site a friend found for me (I used to henna my hair), putting some vinegar into the henna mixture will help it to be more deeply absorbed into the hair shaft.

What I've noticed since going the no-poo route (baking soda and honey, rinse, follow with diluted vinegar or lemon juice rinse, rinse again) is that while my scalp does sometimes itch, but I don't have dandruff the way I use to. FWIW.

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#3 of 15 Old 01-07-2006, 03:21 AM
 
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I should also add, it is possible to be allergic to henna or to something else in the mixture you're using. I remember itching quite a bit after I started adding egg to my henna mix, for conditioning. I think the egg became an irritant. I am not otherwise allergic to them.

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#4 of 15 Old 01-08-2006, 05:43 PM
 
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I add honey or glycerin to my mix, usually about a tablespoon and that helps moisturize my hair. Sometimes if you have too much acid in your mix it can make your head itch. If you post your brand of henna and your recipe, maybe we can help you figure out the problem.
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#5 of 15 Old 01-10-2006, 12:46 AM - Thread Starter
 
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okay, here's my recipe:

100 grams body art quality henna for hair from catherine cartwright-jones

then i add 2 of those concentrated lemons (hmm... could that be the problem?)

and maybe a smidge of water

after oxidation i add 1/2 cup coffee, and 1/2 cup - 1 cup very strongly brewed red rasberry tea

powdered cloves and essential lavender oil

my hair is getting dark so i may start skipping the coffee

i never thought about being sensitive to the henna itself...

okay, don't know if this means a diggity thing, but i am having some yeast issues too
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#6 of 15 Old 01-10-2006, 05:16 PM
 
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Yeast will cause itchy scalp. You can actually put yogurt on your hair and see if it helps. If it's yeasties, it probably will help.

I'm not quite sure I understand the OP: how often are you using the henna? (Daily/ weekly/ monthly?) I'd say monthly would be the optimal timing, if you have really fast growing hair. Otherwise, less often. I personally only henna my hair once every six months (but I let my roots grow out, cause I'm lazy).

You could also be sensitive to the cloves in your mixture. Or the lemons. Experiment to find out...
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#7 of 15 Old 01-11-2006, 03:58 AM
 
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Any number of those things could cause itch. You could do the henna version of an elimination diet, then add in one ingredient at a time as you find yourself not itching from plain henna.

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#8 of 15 Old 01-12-2006, 10:55 PM - Thread Starter
 
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i really appreciate everyone's input! i am a lazy henna gal too and do it about every 2 months, maybe 3. i am getting ready to deal with the yeast issue which was really bad about 1 week ago, which unfortunately coincided with when i chose to henna!

i will try to make a few changes my next henna time, and in the meantime will be working on my yeast issue!
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#9 of 15 Old 01-13-2006, 04:36 PM
 
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OK, I think the problem is all the lemon juice in your mix. I've heard a number of people who used lots of lemon say that it made their heads itch. You actually need very little acid to make your mix acidic. I use one or two teaspoons of vinigar in my mix and the rest of the liquid is water. You could try that or try just using one or two teaspoons of lemon juice. I've been using henna over a year and get great dye release without all that acid.

I normally have an itchy scalp but the antifungal properties of henna really calm it down.

If you cut the acid back and still have problems, eliminate the cloves as many people are sensitive to cloves. Could be the henna, but I doubt it.
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#10 of 15 Old 01-15-2006, 11:34 AM - Thread Starter
 
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thanks prairiechild, it makes sense for a good place to start, i will try reducing my lemon next time... and maybe adding a little bit of honey or glycerin.
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#11 of 15 Old 01-17-2006, 10:04 PM
 
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In the past I've used both lemon juice and apple cider vinegar, but since then I've found that amla by itself provides enough acidity to make the dye release.

I add 2 teaspoons to my 50g of henna powder. I really like how my hair feels afterward.
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#12 of 15 Old 01-18-2006, 02:23 PM - Thread Starter
 
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well, had a gyn appt. yesterday, yeast is ruled out now.... i have bacteria.... nice.


anotherKatrina, what is amla?
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#13 of 15 Old 01-18-2006, 07:38 PM
 
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Amla...

I took this right off Catherine's website, (www.hennaforhair.com)

"Emblica officinalis, also called Amla, is the powdered fruit (and sometimes leaves and twigs) of the "Indian Gooseberry". It is an excellent scalp and hair conditioner and facial scrub. Use it with indigo when dying hair black to improve gloss and curl."

Elsewhere on the site it talks about amla having a high amount of ascorbic acid. Some people report that it slightly makes the henna less red and more brown, while others notice no color change at all.

Another note about cloves...I do remember that the last time I used them in my mix it was quite the tingly experience. You could be sensitive, also.
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#14 of 15 Old 03-24-2006, 01:03 AM - Thread Starter
 
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i just hennaed again, only using the juice of 1 lemon with the henna to oxidize. then added the cloves and lavender before applying, and i am happy to say the reduction worked! no itchies, i even slept in it which meant about 9 hours of having it on my head (i have 2 kiddies!) thanks again for all of your advice!!
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#15 of 15 Old 03-24-2006, 05:50 PM
 
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Two cents - adding tea to the henna mixture makes it stay longer on skin or probably hair too. Check out any Indian sites on henna.

Spazzy (who happens to be Indian!)
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