How to Achieve Beautiful Hair Color with Henna and Indigo

How to Achieve Beautiful Hair Color with Henna and Indigo
  • PublishedJune 8, 2024


Looking to achieve a stunning hair color naturally? Henna and indigo might just be your new best friends. These natural dyes have been used for centuries and are known for their vibrant and long-lasting colors. Plus, they come with the added bonus of being gentle on your hair and scalp. Let’s dive into the world of henna and indigo to discover how you can achieve beautiful, natural hair color.

Understanding Henna

What is Henna?

Henna is a natural dye made from the leaves of the Lawsonia inermis plant. When dried and ground into a powder, it releases a red-orange dye molecule called lawsone. This molecule binds to the keratin in your hair, resulting in a vibrant, lasting color.

Historical Significance of Henna

Henna has been used for thousands of years across various cultures, from ancient Egypt to India and the Middle East. It’s not just for hair—henna is also famous for creating intricate body art, particularly in bridal ceremonies and festivals.

Benefits of Henna for Hair

Henna is not only a natural dye but also a great conditioner. It strengthens hair, adds shine, and can even help with dandruff and scalp conditions. Unlike chemical dyes, henna coats the hair shaft rather than penetrating it, which means it doesn’t damage the hair’s internal structure.

Understanding Indigo

What is Indigo?

Indigo is a natural dye obtained from the leaves of the Indigofera tinctoria plant. When the leaves are processed, they produce a deep blue dye. For hair dyeing purposes, indigo is often used after henna to create darker shades.

Historical Significance of Indigo

Indigo has a rich history, especially in textile dyeing. It was a highly prized dye in ancient times, used by civilizations across Asia, Africa, and the Americas. In the context of hair dye, indigo has been traditionally used in combination with henna to achieve a range of darker hair colors.

Benefits of Indigo for Hair

Indigo helps in achieving beautiful dark tones and provides a natural alternative to synthetic hair dyes. It is also known for its cooling properties and can help soothe the scalp.

Henna and Indigo: The Perfect Combination

Why Use Henna and Indigo Together?

Using henna and indigo together allows for a wide range of hair colors, from rich auburns to deep blacks. Henna alone will give you a reddish-orange color, but when followed by indigo, you can achieve browns and blacks. This two-step process ensures that your hair color is vibrant and long-lasting.

Differences Between Henna and Indigo

While henna provides reddish tones, indigo adds blue-black hues. When combined, they create a spectrum of natural colors, depending on the proportions and the method of application.

Preparing for the Process

Choosing Quality Henna and Indigo

To get the best results, it’s crucial to choose high-quality, natural henna and indigo powders. Look for products that are free from additives and chemicals. Organic and body art quality (BAQ) henna is often the best choice.

Tools and Materials Needed

  • Henna and indigo powder
  • Mixing bowls and spoons
  • Gloves
  • Application brush
  • Plastic wrap or shower cap
  • Old towels
  • Essential oils (optional)

Step-by-Step Guide to Dyeing Hair with Henna

Preparing the Henna Paste

  1. Mix the Henna: In a non-metallic bowl, mix the henna powder with lukewarm water until you get a smooth, yogurt-like consistency.
  2. Add Extras: You can add a few drops of essential oils like lavender or tea tree for a pleasant scent and added benefits.
  3. Let it Rest: Cover the bowl and let the mixture sit for 6-12 hours. This allows the dye to release properly.

Application Process

  1. Protect Your Skin: Apply a layer of petroleum jelly around your hairline to prevent staining.
  2. Apply Henna: Section your hair and start applying the henna paste from the roots to the tips using an application brush.
  3. Cover Your Hair: Once all your hair is covered, wrap it in plastic wrap or a shower cap to keep the henna moist and warm.

Waiting Time and Rinsing

  1. Wait: Leave the henna on your hair for 2-4 hours.
  2. Rinse: Rinse your hair thoroughly with water until the water runs clear. Avoid using shampoo immediately after rinsing.

Step-by-Step Guide to Dyeing Hair with Indigo

Preparing the Indigo Paste

  1. Mix the Indigo: Mix the indigo powder with lukewarm water until you achieve a smooth paste.
  2. Immediate Use: Unlike henna, indigo paste should be used immediately after mixing as it loses its dyeing power quickly.

Application Process

  1. Section Your Hair: Divide your hair into sections for easier application.
  2. Apply Indigo: Apply the indigo paste to your hair, covering all the hennaed areas.
  3. Cover Your Hair: Wrap your hair in plastic wrap or a shower cap again.

Waiting Time and Rinsing

  1. Wait: Leave the indigo paste on your hair for 1-2 hours.
  2. Rinse: Rinse your hair thoroughly with water until it runs clear. Again, avoid using shampoo immediately after rinsing.

Achieving Different Shades

How to Get Reddish Tones

To enhance the reddish tones, you can mix henna with acidic liquids like lemon juice or vinegar. The acidity helps in releasing the dye better.

How to Achieve Brown Tones

For brown tones, apply henna first and then indigo. The proportion of henna to indigo will determine the depth of the brown.

Getting a Rich Black Color

To achieve a deep black color, ensure that the henna is thoroughly applied and followed by a generous application of indigo. The longer you leave the indigo on, the darker the color will be.

Maintaining Your Henna and Indigo Hair Color

Tips for Long-Lasting Color

  • Use sulfate-free shampoos and conditioners.
  • Avoid excessive sun exposure.
  • Rinse your hair with cool water to lock in the color.

Best Hair Care Practices

  • Regularly oil your hair with natural oils like coconut or argan oil.
  • Use a deep conditioner to keep your hair hydrated.

Recommended Products

  • Sulfate-free shampoo
  • Moisturizing conditioner
  • Natural hair oils

Potential Side Effects and How to Avoid Them

Common Issues

  • Dryness
  • Potential allergic reactions
  • Unintended color results

Preventative Measures

  • Do a patch test before full application.
  • Condition your hair regularly to prevent dryness.
  • Follow the mixing and application instructions carefully.


Natural hair dyes like henna and indigo offer a beautiful and chemical-free way to color your hair. They not only provide vibrant, long-lasting color but also nourish and strengthen your hair. Whether you’re looking to cover grays or simply want a change, henna and indigo are worth a try. Embrace the natural beauty of your hair with these timeless dyes!

Kirpal Export Overseas is a leading private label henna powder manufacturer in India, specializing in premium quality natural henna powder, Rajasthani henna powder, and henna hair dyes. Sourced from Sojat, Rajasthan, our henna is derived from the finest Lawsonia Inermis leaves. Our natural henna powders offer long-lasting and chemical-free hair coloring, providing herbal reddish-brown hues and conditioning benefits. Trust our expertise for the best mehndi hair dye solutions, catering to the herbal needs of our valued customers. Visit our website to know more.

FAQs After the Conclusion

Can You Use Henna and Indigo on Chemically Treated Hair?

Yes, you can use henna and indigo on chemically treated hair. However, it’s advisable to wait a few weeks after chemical treatments to allow your hair to recover.

Does Henna and Indigo Hair Dye Last as Long as Chemical Dyes?

Henna and indigo can last as long as chemical dyes, but the duration depends on your hair type and how well you maintain it.

Are There Any Special Aftercare Products Needed for Henna and Indigo-Dyed Hair?

Using sulfate-free shampoos and conditioners is recommended. Natural oils and deep conditioners can also help maintain the color and health of your hair.

How Soon Can You Reapply Henna and Indigo?

You can reapply henna and indigo every 4-6 weeks to maintain the color.

Can Henna and Indigo Cause Allergic Reactions?

While rare, allergic reactions can occur. Always perform a patch test before applying henna and indigo to your entire scalp.

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