(NaturalNews) Dark hair ranges in color from light brown to lustrous black. Dark hair can easily be stripped of its color and become dull and faded if not looked after carefully. Try natural, herbal treatments such as henna to enhance color and natural rinses to improve hair condition.
Herbs such as rosemary, lavender and cloves are known to promote healthy hair growth. They make the hair smell wonderful and bring out natural highlights in dark hair. Other herbs are useful in bringing out the natural color of brunettes: sage, black walnut hulls, burdock root and elderberries.
Natural shampoo for dark hair
Boil 2 cups of water with 2 teaspoons each of dried lavender and dried rosemary. Add 5 whole cloves to the mix. Turn off the heat and allow the herbs to steep for an hour. Strain into a glass bottle and add 2 to 3 tablespoons of natural shampoo. Shake well before use.
Hair rinse for brunettes
Try rinsing hair with clove tea or rose-hip tea to bring out chestnut highlights. Cloves will bring out warm tones and enhance any red in the hair. Strong black coffee can be used to darken hair.
When the tea or coffee is cool, pour over the hair, using a bowl to catch the mixture. Rinse through hair at least 5 times, re-using the liquid each time. Wrap hair in an old towel and leave hair for 15 - 20 minutes. Wash hair, using a good quality, natural shampoo.
Henna dye for dark hair
Henna can be used to dye hair a color that is equal to or darker than the hair's natural color. Brown, black or red hair can be dyed successfully with henna.
Be careful when buying henna powder, as some henna products contain toxic ingredients. Always buy fresh, good quality henna from a reputable source.
1 cup henna powder (less may be used for short hair) 2 teaspoons freshly ground cloves 1 tablespoon olive oil Hot water
1) Make sure henna is not placed in a metal container or touched with a metal spoon.
2) Boil approximately 250ml (1 cup) water and add the cloves. Allow tea to stand for 10 minutes, then mix into the henna to make a paste.
3) Mix in the olive oil, apply to hair and leave on for at least two hours or longer, depending on hair shade desired. The longer the henna is left on the hair, the darker the color will become.
Avocado Hair Mask
Dark hair will benefit from a hair mask, which acts as a rich moisturizer for dry hair.
Mash one small, ripe avocado with a tablespoon of soy yogurt and a teaspoon of honey. Apply to hair, massage into scalp. This is messy, so cover hair with a shower cap and leave for 20 minutes prior to washing and rinsing.
When experimenting with natural dyes for dark hair, be patient, since obtaining the desired shade can be a trial and error process.
Fleur Hupston is a professional freelance writer. She is passionate about natural, healthy living and is currently studying to be a naturopath. She divides her time between writing for Natural News and various other sites, home schooling her children and studying part time.