Now Playing: Skinny Love by Birdy (skinny love, just last the year, pour a little salt, we were never here)
So a lot of people have been asking me why my hair is so different to what it has been since forever and whether I'm still washing it with my kitchen pantry.
Firstly, I broke the first cardinal rule of no-poo; I used shampoo. Well, I used more conditioner than shampoo because I had my shampoo bar for most of the trip, but in Korea it was just easier to use what everyone else was using and I was tired and very cold and sick for a lot of the trip and my hair was kind of the last thing on my mind and also using straight vinegar on your hair gets you told off by your hairdresser and...
Secondly, I broke another cardinal rule of no-poo: I got a perm. Well, I got two perms but the perm I got in Korea was so weak I had to redo it. Ever since I was about eleven I have had, no joke, the exact same hairstyle - Jennifer Aniston layers. The only exception is that I once had a really bad fringe and when I was thirteen I had red streaks, but still the same haircut. The thing I hate about straight hair, especially black straight hair, is that it was very noticable when my hair was thinning in year twelve and it's very flat and it looks greasy reaaally easy. Also...I love curly hair. I curl my hair every chance I get, and my hair got very fried in the process, not to mention I am properly terrified of the curling iron.
I lurve ma perm.
Aside from those two naughty rule breaks I have been very good to my hair. I still love my shampoo bar and it's the best thing ever for your hair. I bought a natural hair conditioner that is carried just by the regular supermarket called Australian Organics and it's...okay. It's not much more expensive than other brands and, yah know, it does the job. But I like silky soft hair. Which means I end up using half a bottle of this silicone-free stuff to get the same effect that silicone conditioners give.
Which is, yah know, bad.
I tried making my own hair conditioner and it sucked the big one - so if you've seen me with very greasy or straw dry hair, it's because of an experiment gone wrong ;). But I wanted to make something to bulk up my conditioner to make it more effective and stretch it out a bit more.
I hope somebody understands me when I say that black hair is really boring. Sure it's striking and catches the light and blah blah, but the thing I've always loved about blonde and brown hair is that it has lowlights, highlights, changes with age...black hair is just black. Black in the shade, black in the sun, black when its wet, black when you're a baby, black until you go grey. Having red streaks was probably not one of my most fashion forward moments but at least it was interesting.
I must admit the first time I used henna I wasn't that impressed. It was really messy and time consuming and didn't do all that much, although I did like that it was a pretty amazing hair treatment. A couple of years and a bit of research later I found out that henna can be mixed with pretty much anything, the colour can be altered with coffee and spices and 'activated' by acid, salt and essential oils.
Cue my unsatiated love of making hair potions.
I've made a looooot of hair potions and never really stuck with any, but I seriously love this one. It sounds complicated but it's really easy to make and I almost always have all the ingredients on hand, and it works even if a lot of the things are missing. I used to mix my conditioner into it and use it after shampoo but after I increased how much henna I used it made my hair a bit greasy and using conditioner by itself helps all the little bits slip out of your hair easier. I use a small batch and concentrate it on the lengths and ends for about 5-30 minutes before shampooing (I wash my hair every other day) and then once a week I'll make a double batch and leave it in for at least an hour. In between washes (or if an experiment goes bad and I look like Snape) I use an all natural dry shampoo by Klorane, but a bit of cinnamon or cornstarch works in a pinch.
The henna I use is from Lush and I use Caca Rouge - the red henna with no indigo or coffee in it. It's made into a solid block using cocoa butter so it's super nourishing, but a tad heavy if you don't wash it out with shampoo. I grate it up and one block lasts a little while.
WARNING: don't use this unless you have very dark hair because henna is very potent on fair hair.
Daily Henna Treatment:
- Mix one teaspoon of rolled oats or oat bran with one tablespoon of boiling water until mushy. Add another tablespoon of hot water and then add a teaspoon of each of the following: coffee (grounds or powder), green tea, black tea, salt, apple cider vinegar, balsamic vinegar, salt, grapefruit juice, plain Greek yoghurt, honey, cinnamon, ginger powder
- Add a few drops of essential oils (I like lavender, eucalyptus and tea tree)
- Add oil to suit your hair type (olive, argan or coconut). I use about half a teaspoon.
- Add two teaspoons of grated up Caca Rouge.
- Apply to hair, focusing on ends and lengths. Leave in for 5-30 minutes, then shampoo and condition as normal
If you ask a bloke my hair is still black, but it is actually more of a chocolate brown with pretty red highlights and a deep red glow in the sun. If you have permed hair, towel dry and then use a few drops of argan oil to set your curls (this works. Seriously.) Once a week double the quantities and use as a one hour hair mask.
EDIT: Everyone does henna differently I will probably be lynched for doing it 'wrong' but so far my head hasn't exploded so apparently it's all okay. And yes I know Caca Rouge is kind of cheating but...I don't care.