Sophia asked if my No-poo Shampoo Tea have a combination of herbs that darken hair or alter/affect the color?
It is a great question and I had to do a little research to answer it.
If you are using my No-poo shampoo herbal combination to darken your hair quickly, you’ll probably be disappointed. However, there is a chance that your hair will start growing in darker or with less grey.
However, if your goal is to have 100% certainty that you will see absolutely no color change on your light, very blonde or white hair, read on.
Testing for Herbs that Darken Hair
First, to really really know if the herbs darken hair, we’d need to test it on a variety of hair types over an extended period of time. I have not done this. However, while I’m not a scientist, I doubt it would impact any natural hair color or any dye. Additionally, its gentleness means it will protect hair color and preserve natural or dyed hair color.
Want to Avoid Potential of Color Change?
That said, if your hair is very white or blonde and you want to keep it very white or blonde, then there’s a possibility – but unlikely – it could darken hair. This would be especially true if your hair is extremely porous, like recently bleached.
A color change is most likely if you use the “paste method” to wash your hair (meaning you make a thick paste, put it on your hair and leave for 20 minutes). To be 100% safe, you might want to stick with a professional hair shampoo for maintaining white or very blonde hair.
Slow Working Herbs that Darken Hair and Reduces Grey
There is slightly better chance that your hair might slowly grow out less grey than it was due to healthier hair but this is based on traditional expectations. Many of the herbs I include are traditionally used to wash hair, prevent hair fall, condition hair and “prevent greying”. But what does this mean? It’s hard to know because there’s almost no research that tests topical herbal application on hair color. The best I could find was some evidence that the herbs helps hair growth which results in hair growing in darker.
Does Amla Change Hair Color?
An example of this is Amla (Indian gooseberry). It is traditionally believed to help hair growth and hair pigment. Times of India says Amla will help prevent greying hair.
I found one study of herbal hair dyes that stated: “The sufficient amount of vitamin C in amla helps to halt pre-mature greying.” And in “Study of Coluring Effect of Herbal Hair Formulations on Graying Hair” they found that a combination of “gudhal, jatamansi, kuth, kattha, amla, coffee and henna” did darken hair. However this is not surprising because the mix included Henna. Henna is a known natural hair dye. In fact, all studies but one that mentioned herbal hair darkening always included henna in the mix.
Shikakai, according to one paper is said to help prevent grey hair due to keeping hair healthy; “Shikakai is packed with vitamins A, C, D and K, which together form a powerful antioxidant. This antioxidant is probably the only thing your hair needs to cleanse the scalp of the sebum buildup, unclog pores, kill infection-causing bacteria and stimulate hair growth. “
Yucca, Soap Wort, Soap Nut Powder and Brahmi aren’t known for having an impact on hair color. Flax Seed, Horsetail, Bladderwrack and Ginger root aren’t known to dye or color hair. (Horsetail might prevent greying if taken internally).
These Herbs Darken Hair
The only two herbs in my No-Poo Shampoo that might impact hair color is Hibiscus (6% of my mix) and Cat Nip (3% of my mix).
To get a red color from Hibiscus, you’d actually want to mix it with other things, specifically an acid. But, if your hair is very light and porous, it is possible that it could pick up color I imagine. I found this is one paper ” Regular using of hibiscus flower juice can easily restrict hair fall control, dandruff and graying of hair even when you are touching 50 years of age. This is an age-old remedy for all those people who have been struggling for healthy hair that is free from grey hair. It also contains essential fatty acids, which strengthen hair follicles and provides shine and new life.”
Cat Nip actually offsets red and is said to give blondish highlights to light hair with no red but you’d want to use this full strength to have any impact. Cat Nip won’t impact dark hair.
Other Herbs that (may) Darken Hair?
- Henna this stuff absolutely proven to darken and color hair
- Coffee & Tea
- Black Walnut Shells