Strand test fail?

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Katarzena
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Strand test fail?

I don't know if I have done anything wrong, but my strand test failed, I guess. I was going for black color, did a 2 step process. My strand test (hair ball) is kind of greyish, dark greyish with a little bit of green tint in a day light. It's been a day now, it didn't change at all. Tomorrow at the same time it will be 2 days after the hennaing but I don't feel like it is going to get any darker. In the inside it looks black but when I come closer to the window I freak out. That's definitely not what I want my hair to look like!

 

So what I did?

I have put a piece of henna to release dye over night (12 hours).

I have mixed that little piece of henna with water and apple juice (1:1) and put it on on the hair ball (after it stayed covered in  a cup 12 hours)

I left that for 4 and a half hours.

 

 Then I mixed indigo with just water and put it on the same hair ball to stay for about 2 hours.

 

And this is what I got.

Any suggestions?

:)

ACWN
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Re: Strand test fail?

1. 12 hours is WAY too long for a 50/50 mix of water/apple juice. Apple juice dye releases in 7 - 9 hours, water dye releases almost instantly. Letting it sit for 12 hours means when you used it the dye had demised. Next time do just juice, its gentle enough that it wont hurt your hair any.

 

2. Did you cover the hair? This is EXTREMELY important. The hair needs to be put in a ziplock bag with all the air pressed out, for both henna and indigo. If either are exposed to air and dry out, they wont dye.

Carrie
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Re: Strand test fail?

What kind of henna and what kind of indigo did you use?

You say you put the henna to dye release overnight, and THEN added water and apple juice ... what was the liquid you added initially before you let it sit for dye release?

When you had the hair in the paste, was it covered airtight, so no air could get to it? Was it kept as warm as body temperature?

What was the temperature of the room where the test was?

Katarzena
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Re: Strand test fail?

It might be the problem that I let it sit for too long (12 hours), what ACWN said. I'll try again with only water is that okay? Or do I need some acid put in? I don't want to waste any juice lol if I don't have to.

 

No, I didn't put any extra liquid in it. I have mixed the powder of henna with wwater and juice and THEN put it to release dye over nigh, It was closed in a cup.

 

I have put hair ball in a plastic wrap. It might have had some air still in, I did put it in but I didn't think about getting all the air out, I didnt know it was neccessary.

 

I'll do this again and we'll see.

I would just like to get an advice on what liquid to use and how long to leave henna to release dye, cause I'm confused now.

 

 

EDIT- henna and indigo I use are pure. The hair was in my room, in a plastic wrap, temperature is around 26 °C ..

 

Thanks for being so helpful!

Carrie
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Re: Strand test fail?

For the henna, mix with room temperature water or tea, let it sit for 2-4 hours until you get an orange stain on your palm in 1 minute. Be sure you see the orange stain on your palm before you apply it to the hair.

(If you are covering gray, add a little extra acidic ingredient like a splash of vinegar, wine, juice, instead of plain water or tea)

After rinsing off the henna, mix indigo with warm water and apply immediately.

The application times you used are fine. You could do as little as 2 hours of henna followed by 1 hour of indigo, if you are keeping the test as warm as body temperature (around 100'F).

ACWN
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Re: Strand test fail?

Acid is kinda needed. With water the dye release happens fairly quickly, but so does dye demise. Because acid makes it take longer, the dye lasts longer. The dye has to bind to your hair in order to dye properly and permanently and with water it doesnt have a chance to do that and the color tends to come out a little lame.

 

What liquid you use is up to you and how sensitive you are. If you're okay with a strong acid, use lemon juice and let it sit for 12 hours. Lemon juice is the only one that you should let sit for that long.

Orange juice dye releases in about 8 - 10 hours, apple releases in 7 - 9, tea releases 1 - 4.

 

You will get dye release in an hour with tea at 26 C but know that is actually bordering on risky temps to keep henna. Prime dye release temp is about 21.1 C, anything over 26.6 isnt recommended as it will also speed up dye demise (you actually run the risk of missing dye release entirely). Anything lower than 21.1 C will take longer, how long depends on how much lower the temp is.

 

Remember that absolutely no air can touch the henna while it dye releases so even if you put a lid on the cup, you're still trapping air in with the henna. Best policy is to press plastic wrap to the surface of the henna.

 

Also, never assume henna is ready. You must always test for dye release by smearing some on your palm and letting it sit for a minute. When you wipe it off, you want a noticable orange stain, like this. If its lighter, let it sit another half hour and retest. If you have no color, let it sit another hour.

 

 

EDIT: Okay, I know Carrie said 2 - 4 hours for tea, but I personally have gotten solid dye release within an hour with my strong brewed tea (3 packets to 1 cup of water). My house is warm, even with the AC on. If I had to guess, I'd say its probably bordering on 26 C. I've only ever had to wait 2 hours when it was in the middle of the winter and blistering cold. *shrug* So you may want to start testing for dye release in an hour if you use tea, just to be safe.

Katarzena
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Re: Strand test fail?

Okay. I've decided to mix henna with not too cold/not too warm water with a little splash of a apple juice. (I used really cold water last time, maybe that was one of the problems too.) I'm covering natural ash blonde hair.

Let it sit for dye release (2 hours) and then check it out. (Not put it just in a cup but cover it with plastic wrap AND cover the cup).

(I would use only apple juice and leave it for 7 hours but I'm not sure I have it anymore)

what about water and a splash of juice? Still leave it for only 2-4 hours?

 

We'll see. I'm excited. :)

ACWN
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Re: Strand test fail?

It only matters if the liquid is too hot. If its really cold its just going to take a little while longer, but its not going to hurt anything.

 

Tea is 2 - 4 hours. I dont know what mostly water and a splash of apple juice would be. Depends on how much juice you mix into the water. No more than a tablespoon could give you dye release in maybe 2 hours, if you keep it at around 75 degrees Fahrenheit. Half water half juice would probably be closer to 4 - 5 hours. This also all depends on the temp you keep the henna at. Remember, do not let it get above 80 degrees Fahrenheit.

 

You'll just need to keep a really close eye on it. Couple things you can do to know whether or not you need to test for dye release on your palm...

1. Put a plain white paper napkin over the plastic wrap thats covering the henna and check it often. IF you see a very pale orange stain on the napkin, test. This is not a sure fire way and may not happen, but sometimes the dye will bleed through a little and stain the napkin.

2. Keep a close eye on the color of the paste. It should start out a funky colored green. When it turns to a sortve chocolate brown, check for dye release. The brown comes from the red/orange dye mixing with the green color of the crushed leaves.

 

Again, these are not methods that you should trust to tell you that you have dye release, but methods that may help you determine if you should check.

Katarzena
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Re: Strand test fail?
Ah, I am so sad that I have to say that my strand test failed again! I really have no idea what went wrong again.. Ill leave it over night to see if it will darken, it turned blondish; dark green :/
ACWN
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Re: Strand test fail?

Green suggests that you got indigo dye uptake, but not much henna uptake. Either you used too much indigo or there was something wrong with the henna's dye. Give it a week, not just overnight. It will take longer than 12 hours for it to oxidize fully.

Katarzena
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Re: Strand test fail?

The last strand test didn't change at all.

I took the strand test that I did night before the last one (half water, half apple juice, 4 hour dye release, indigo half water, half juice too, not waiting for dye release) and I've put indigo once again on it for an hour. It turned darker, still not completely black, has a little green tint to it. It might get darker over time, but I'm definitely not satisfied with it.. I'm too afraid to put it on my whole head now after all these ''green'' experiences.

I guess I'll turn to chemical dye if the last strand test fails (mixed with apple juice only)

So we'll see.

Wish me luck :)

ACWN
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Re: Strand test fail?

*sigh* Again... if you're getting mostly green its because there is something wrong with the henna's dye. Either its not dye released or is demising, its not covered enough with the paste, its not covered by a ziplock to keep air off it, its not being kept warm, or its not being left on long enough.

 

 

Also, dont mix indigo with ANY acid directly. Indigo does not like acids and apple juice is acidic.

Katarzena
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Re: Strand test fail?

What a jouney, huh :D

 

I've been keeping my eye on this strand test that had been put in indigo twice, it is getting darker which is a good thing. Now, in the inside it looks dark brown, but on the outside it looks blondish. Maybe some hairs weren't soaked enough in dye?

I won't give up yet. lol. I have one more strand test going on :D henna is releasing dye, mixed with apple juice completely, I covered it with saranwrap so no air comes to it. After 7 hours I'll put hair strand in it. Keep it like that for 6 hours this time. After that I'll mix indigo with water and put it on for 2 hours. If it doesn't come dark enough I'll apply indigo once again.

I believe something is wrong with henna too.

How warm do I have to keep it? It is in my kitchen, covered. I guess a normal room temperature maybe a little colder.

ACWN
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Re: Strand test fail?

Keep henna paste no warmer than 75 degrees while its dye releasing. 70 degrees is the sweet spot for safe henna release. Any warmer than 80 is too risky as you could miss the dye release. 60 - 65 degrees will take a while longer, but its a fine temp range.

 

Please remember to not assume you have dye release, always check. Do not just wait 7 hours and throw it in. Test on your palm. Once you have it and you have put the sample in, put it in a ziplock, suck out the air, seal it and put it in your pocket.

 

6 hours is fine, but so you know you wont get much more dye uptake after 4 hours. An hour is typically long enough for indigo if you're shooting for black.

 

What henna are you using? Is it mehandi.com henna? If so, sorry.. its probably user error, not the henna itself.

Katarzena
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Re: Strand test fail?

No it's not mehandi henna. I'm from Europe.

It is Muller henna and indigo which are known over here as clean henna and indigo.

 

If this doesn't work out, I was thinking about Color Erbe hair color. Do you know if that dye contains ppd? That's what I'm mainly trying to avoid. I know it contains chemicals but ppd is what worries me the most even tho I never had any reaction to it.

Thanks aga8in for being so helpful. :)

ACWN
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Re: Strand test fail?

Ah, hmm.. It may be the henna and indigo then. I recommend trying stuff from hennaboy. They're reputable and have quality stuff - they're a UK based site.

 

Try them before you try box dye again.

Katarzena
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Re: Strand test fail?

Ok. I'll see tomorrow in the morning and let you know what happend. If the strand test turns at least dark brown I'll go for it and put it on my head.

I'll apply indigo twice in a row later today on strand test.

Is there anywhere in the forum topic where someone dyed their hair black? It might be useful to see how they prepared it.

Jen
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Re: Strand test fail?

Did you ever let us know what kind/brand of henna you're using? That could have a tremendous impact on the situation. How do you know its pure? Assuming that it is, are you sure its not stale?

Katarzena
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Re: Strand test fail?

I've stated before that I'm using Muller henna, it is a company from Germany, I've done a lot of researching before buying it and talked with people that have been using it. On the boxes of henna it says lawsonia infermis on indigo it says indigofera tinctoria. The colour of the both powders resembels those on this site. And on the box there is some kind of an ''eko award'' for 100% natural product.

I don't know, I'm pretty sure it's clean. :)

I would buy henna and indigo from this site if I had a chance.

ACWN
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Re: Strand test fail?

It might very well be stale, Katarzena. That will have a huge impact on the color - especially the indigo. People here dye their hair black all the time with a two step of henna then indigo for an hour. If you arent getting black with in an hour from the indigo, its probably stale.

 

Try hennaboy. You CAN order from mehandi.com, its just probably going to be kinda expensive with shipping and customs.

Carrie
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Re: Strand test fail?

This shows how to do a 2-step for black:

http://www.mehandi.com/shop/hairindigo/black.pdf

Katarzena
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Re: Strand test fail?

Thank you Carrie for your link.

ACWN, the price is the main problem. I can't order form America, it is just too expensive.

The other strand test is getting darker and darker. It's been more then 16 hours now, it looks completely black. Yay! (but it's evening over here so I'll see in the morning what it looks like outside).

 

Henna is still releasing dye (this is for the strand test with henna and indigo mixed with apple juice only).

I don't know how many strand test I have already done! Hee-hee. I have a few of them. Each is on a piece of paper that says what I've done. lol

 

What I've wanted to show you is this. I've found this picture on Google, this is what my strand tests look like:

On my last strand test (the most successful one) color is black in the middle (where are most of the hairs) but more blondish on the outside, I hope you understand what I mean. I guess that's normal?

http://www.google.hr/imgres?imgurl=http://www.windswept-hair.co.uk/wp-co...

ACWN
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Re: Strand test fail?

Again, try hennaboy. Its a UK based site, meaning you wont be paying shipping from America.

 

Multiple colors are normal if thats what you started out with. However, if you're shooting for black you should not be getting multiple colors. It probably means that you didnt have even coverage on the whole test. But I have no idea how you're getting blond with a henna/indigo two step... you shouldnt.

Carrie
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Re: Strand test fail?

There is another EU seller mentioned in another post this week; I have no direct experience with them but their site makes them appear knowledgeable at least. Perhaps shipping from there is cheaper for you?

http://forums.hennapage.com/node/882

Carrie
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Re: Strand test fail?

If the indigo paste isn't penetrating all the hair in your sample, perhaps you are mixing it too thick. Indigo didn't work well for me until I learned to add enough liquid that the liquid can spread around easily on the hair.

Katarzena
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Re: Strand test fail?

I guess some hairs weren't soaked in well. The middle is now completely black. I'm excited about the last strand test that has to happen hope it will work the best.

Katarzena
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Re: Strand test fail?

FINALLY!

My last strand test was successful. It is completely black, has a little bit of a green tint to it, that is now after an hour already less visibile.

As I've read the green tint goes away within day or two so I'll wash my hair tonight, and put on the whole 2 step process in the morning. (well my sister ill do it for me).

 

Wish me luck :)

Carrie
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Re: Strand test fail?

That's great, congratulations! What did you do differently for the last strand test, anything?

Katarzena
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Re: Strand test fail?

It took me five strand tests to realize that it's not the same amount of time that has to pass with different acids, how important it is to zip the strand test and henna itself while releasing dye and stuff like that.

What works for me is:

Mix henna with apple juice, let it sit for 7 hours. Put it on hair for 5 and a half hours, wash out, mix indigo with water (not to cold not to warm), leave it on for 2 hours. Wash it all, and apply indigo once again for 1 hour.

 

:)

 

The strand test is now completely black, or very very dark brown. There's a little bi tof green tint left, only visible on the outsides.

Is the green tint going to go away completely? Are you sure?

(:

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