Lush Henna Hair Color Walk Through

First let me say that this isn't my review of Lush's Caca Rouge Henna, that will come next time I dye my hair. This is just a sort of walk through or tutorial on how I use this hair color. Henna can be intimidating to use, I know I've read walk throughs that make preparing and applying henna sound like a total nightmare. Yes, henna isn't anywhere near as easy or convenient as boxed dye, but it isn't as hard as some make it seem and it gets easier with each use. I hope this tutorial is helpful and doesn't sound too scary. :3
 Here's what you need:
Lush Henna in color of your choice. I'm using Caca Rouge
Plenty of newspaper
A sturdy bowl you don't mind ruining. 
A knife and cutting board
A wooden spoon
Hot water
Latex gloves
Baby Wipes
Garbage Bags
An Old Shirt
Shower cap or cling film. 
Hair Brush
Leave in Treatment
(if you have very long hair, or just want some company)
 Step 1: Prep your area; put down plenty of newspaper. On the floor, in the sink, on the counter tops, wherever you don't want to get stained by henna.

Step 2 Prep yourself. Take off anything you don't want stained, put on an old shirt. Brush your dry hair, taking care to eliminate any knots and tangles you may have. Spread vaseline or a similar product along your hairline, down the sides of your face, on and behind your ears, and down your neck. Henna stains skin very easily, you're probably already aware of this if you're familiar with Mehndi. Henna can stain the skin for a couple of weeks so the vaseline step is very crucial.
 Step 3: A; Prep your henna. Cut squares from your henna brick. I use 3 squares, but I could probably get away with using 2 1/2, but it's better to make extra just in case. Cut each square into 4th's or smaller. Place the cubes of henna into the bowl.
            B: Bring some water to a near boil. Pour over the henna, just enough water to cover the henna cubes.

            C: Let the henna melt a bit on it's own for a couple minutes, just to let the the water cool a bit, for safety purposes. As a cook, I'm very cautious about stirring things in truly boiling hot water. After about 3 minutes, mash and stir the henna into a thick, slightly lumpy paste. Some say it should be a smooth, thick yogurt like consistency, but I kinda like it a little chunky, it helps me concentrate the color in the roots. 
 [newspaper everywhere]
Step 4: Put on your gloves. Begin applying the henna paste to your hair. Don't merely coat your hair, saturate it. Mash the paste in at the roots, then pull it down through the hair gently. I start at the bangs and work backwards. Be thorough, make sure the undersides, roots, tips, and everywhere in between . Your hair should look kinda like dreadlocks. If you have very long hair, have a friend help you (make sure they wear gloves and an old shirt as well). Dean helps me with mine, he's a hair coloring pro now. Actually he just likes playing with the paste :3 Cutie.
Step 5: Put on a shower cap or wrap your hair with plastic wrap/cling film. I opt for the shower cap. This helps prevent mess, and it holds in the heat of the henna, helping the color develop. Another option is to split a plastic bag and wear it kinda like a hat. My mum does this. Pure style, Mum. 
 Step 6: Clean up. Take your gloves off, wipe your face and arms off. Wipe down any surface the henna has landed on (it will splatter about). I use a baby wipe, it removes henna with ease. Recycle the newspapers and discard any extra henna.

Step 7: Wait. The amount of time you leave the henna in is up to you. It depends on your natural hair color, the color of the henna, how intense you want the color to turn out, etc. There's a lot of variables, and I can't really advise you on how long to leave it in. Henna can be left in for up to 24 hours. I leave it in for 6-8 hours. It can be very annoying, heavy, and uncomfortable, at least for me. 
 Step 8: Take a shower. Rinse your hair til the water runs clear. Towel dry partially. Get back in and rinse some more til the water runs clear again. Towel dry partially, apply a spray in, leave in treatment like Aveeno's and let your hair air dry. Your hair will probably feel a little waxy after it dries.

Step 9: Wash your hair again the next day. Expect for more dye to come out the next few times you wash. Also some grainy bits.
[end results]

  • The color will change the next 2-3 days while the color develops in your hair. 
  • Your hair will smell strongly of henna for at least a week. If you aren't familiar, henna smells like a strong, herbal tea. 
  • Though henna is natural it can still dry and damage your hair, like any hair color. Personally my hair stays quite healthy, no matter what. 
  • Henna tends to fade evenly, so roots and other fading issues can be avoided with henna dye.
  • I actually find red henna quite long lasting. I have natural red hair, but it's a dull strawberry blonde, so I use this to enhance my red, and don't feel like I need to re-color for at least 6, if not 8 weeks. 
  • This stuff does not transfer onto pillowcases/clothing etc once it's dry, at least for me
  • Henna colors can be mixed to create new colors
  • You shouldn't dye over henna with boxed dye, it's very damaging and the color will not turn out as expected.
Let me know if you have any questions, or if you have your own henna method. 


  1. I've heard of some people using coffee instead of hot water to mix up the brown and black hennas to get more colour - not sure if it works though.

    1. I've heard that too but I can't confirm it, since I've only used red. I would assume it would work at least a bit. I've also heard of people mixing teas in, or cinnamon to enhance the red one. Can anyone confirm that this works?

  2. Oh Lordy. Sometimes I wish I DIDN'T know naughty words in Spanish because that name translates into something quite icky...
    Regardless of the icky name the color is quite pretty! It's not something I would expect out of a green block dubbed "poop red". X)

  3. ahh! this was really helpful and i really do want to try out some henna now! i think when i goto lush in october i'll pick up a brick and try it out :3

    and it kinda looks like curry when its all dissolved in the bowl lol

    1. it kinda smells like curry too. glad you thought it was helpful. what color do you think you'll go for?

  4. I want to dye my hair red aka; Caca Rouge from lush but my hair is brown so I'm a tad skeptical about it because its first time and I don't want my hair to get wrecked , and are you allowed to use straightners one the dye has fully developed? ?

    1. I don't think that the henna will wreck your hair unless it's already unhealthy. Caca Rouge will probably turn your brown hair auburn-ish, unless you leave it in for quite a while. I don't see any problem in using heat tools on your hair after the color is developed.

  5. I used beet juice with mine to make it more red! I literally just washed all the henna out of my hair after I let it sit for 6 hours, anxious to see the final results in a couple days! Also, red wine can be used to make the hair more red :)

    1. Thanks for the tips! I wonder if the beet juice or wine would give it a richer color. I've actually been putting chili powder in mine the last two times I've used this henna, and I think it gives it a little bit of an orangier hue. I hope you love your new hair!