I’m sharing some secrets this week…
The first one being: I’m a natural
ginger redhead. Okay, maybe you already knew that. And, surprisingly (or unsurprisingly, I’m not sure) I LOVE my unique colouring. I love being different and making heads turn in a crowd of brunettes and blondes (sorry guys), and in a twisted sort of way embracing the ‘power’ of being different. Any other redheads out there feel the same? Please say yes so that I don’t feel so awful and vain for being alone in this.
Before I go on to share my next ‘secret’, allow me to digress a bit. I grew up as the only ginger in my family. It wasn’t until mid-teen years that I learned about my redheaded cousin, and suffice it to say, I was delighted to know I wasn’t alone. Sure, I have a great grandfather with that fiery carrot top, but by the time I knew him it had faded to a handsome, fluffy white… So, I was mostly alone in being that nerdy, awkward, freckly redhead until teenagerdom. In fact, there was a season in my early teens where I hated my copper tones so much, I wanted to dye it all and do anything to hide my rustic features to fit in with the crowd.
My mum, bless her, was so strict in my hair-dying process, “Nothing to permanently damage your hair!!”, she’d tell me. She had lost her red locks as a girl, so she knew how precious it was for me to still have mine. It wasn’t until several years later, on a trip to Ireland, when I began to share her sentiment and understand what it means to be a redhead. I saw so many beautiful, redheaded Irish people, I saw how well they carried themselves, and I wanted to be more like them. I wanted to embrace my uniqueness, show it off to the world and declare my differences. Thank God for the Irish…
Sadly, fast forward several years, and I face what I’ve been fearing since that blessed visit in Ireland: my hair is starting to fade. 🙁 Indeed, my deep copper tones are fading to a strawberry blonde, and it makes me so sad. In fact, I feel I’m losing a part of me as it fades; sure, my annoying freckles stick around, but my red locks decide it’s time for a change. Damn you, age…. Ugh.
Anyway, this brings me to present day, and the secret I have to share. I must give my sister credit for this, as she is the one that discovered its wonders: that is, henna hair dye.
She has gorgeous, long blonde hair and wanted to make a change to red. Like me, she doesn’t like damaging her hair and thus preferred to stay away from store-bought hair dyes … all those chemicals, yikes. Anyway, somehow she learnt about henna hair dye and after a visit to Jeremy’s, walked away a beautiful, natural-looking redhead. Seriously, check her out !!
Ah, I was inspired! I wanted to test henna on my hair, see if I could deepen my natural red tones again without absolutely damaging my hair. After a bunch of research, I decided to test Lush’s Caca line of hennas, since there seemed to be so many reviews about the simple application process and healthy ingredients such as cocoa butter and essential oils for the hair. As I’m very protective of my hair, I tried to research other naturals redheads that have used Lush’s Caca hennas, but to no avail. It seems everyone wants to go from brunette or blonde to red, and not many redheads wanting to alter their own colour (go figure). I felt like I needed to see at least one other redhead’s experience with this henna before I could step out and do it myself. Nevertheless, I was encouraged by my sister’s outcome; so I went straight to Lush for advice and came away with tons of helpful tips and even free samples to assist with the application. Before I visited the store, I couldn’t decide between the Caca Marron and Caca Rouge; I obviously didn’t want orange hair, but I didn’t want to go too brown. The girl helping me suggested starting with the Caca Rouge, explaining I could always deepen it to a warm Auburn by adding the Caca Marron on top later.
So, I followed all of the instructions from the girl at Lush as well as some of their online tutorials; I applied the Caca Rouge all over my head, wrapped it in plastic wrap and a towel and let it sit for about 2 hours. Washing it out took two shampoos and nearly 45 minutes of scrubbing and honestly? When I first got out of the shower I was horrified, my hair was this awful, bright orange-red. I wanted to cry… Peter was much more supportive when I showed him, he told me my hair still looked beautiful (such a good boyfriend) and let me have a little cry on his shoulder.
A few days after dyeing…
However (thank God!), after about a week, the henna dye started darkening and ‘settling’ in to my hair, becoming more of a deep copper/red. It’s been about a month now and I’m so happy to share that my hair looks almost the same as it did about 5 years ago, with deep, rich red tones and I swear it’s even thickened up since I applied the Caca Rouge, too. I’m not one to believe every ad about hair thickening products, but I can truthfully say from my own experience that this henna dye has done wonders on my hair; it feels healthier and looks shinier.
My only complaint, if I had to have one, is the way it’s growing out. Part of what sold me on Lush’s Caca line is how the hair grows without an obvious demarcation line, fading gently over time and blending with the natural hair colour. However I haven’t experienced this, as I can definitely see where my hair has grown in the last month. It’s not extremely obvious yet, but I imagine another month and it’ll be rather visible to everyone. This doesn’t really prevent me from using the Caca Rouge henna in the future, though, since my hair might grow more quickly than most or maybe it just holds onto colour more strongly than others.
The only thing I would do differently next time would be to let the henna dry on my hair without wrapping it in plastic wrap. The heat made it too orangey-red for my liking. And I might only leave it on for an hour. Just my own advice to other natural redheads out there looking for suggestions on Lush’s Caca Rouge. Learn from my experience; unless you actually want orange hair, that is. I’ve heard mixing Caca Rouge and Caca Marron creates a softer red colour? I’ve yet to try it.
Needless to say, I’m very happy with my hair, I feel it looks natural, and I’m not embarrassed by being a ‘fake’ redhead at the moment. Technically, I’m still a redhead through and through, I’ve just enhanced my natural features. 😉 If you’re not sure about changing your hair colour, be cautious with henna dyes, they are permanent and you can’t wash it out. Additionally, be careful about dyeing over bleached hair; I would suggest asking in-store or online at Lush before using the Caca hennas on chemically altered hair.
So, to wrap this up, I’m happy I’ve found a way to maintain my redheaded ways, I feel that I’m being true to myself and still embracing who I am and how I was created. Plus, I don’t have to completely change my wardrobe and makeup to suit a strawberry blonde; at least not as long as I keep this up… 🙂
Questions? Leave a comment below or send me an email. I love hearing from you all!
**This article was not endorsed in any way, all products mentioned are of my own personal review and were not monetarily sponsored by any company