DIY hair colouring: brightening blonde and grey hair

June 30, 2015

Whether you want to transform your blonde or grey hue or simply brighten up dull locks, these home hair remedies will do wonders for your look.

DIY hair colouring: brightening blonde and grey hair

Women have been using nature's bounty to colour their hair since the Bronze Age. As concerns grow over the safety of harsh chemical hair dyes, substances like henna have enjoyed renewed popularity.

Not only are they easy on your hair and scalp, they can provide a great variety of silky, shimmering shades. Dealing with natural hair dyes will require a bit of trial and error. It is a good idea to first colour a lock of your hair to check the colour before applying to your entire mane. To ensure that your shade is neither too light nor too intense, stick with the specified exposure time.

Brighten and touch up blonde hair

  • To make a lemon-based wash that will lighten and add shine to blonde hair, mix 150 millilitres (2/3 cup) boiling water with the juice and grated peel of a lemon and steep for 30 minutes. Strain and stir in five millilitres (one teaspoon) of cider vinegar. Slather evenly on your freshly washed hair and rinse with warm water after 10–15 minutes. Repeat once a week.
  • Mix together a spreadable paste that will turn blonde hair shiny. Pour a little boiling water over about 150 grams (five ounces) of chamomile blooms and steep for 30 minutes. Then strain and put the flowers into a bowl with 100 grams (3 1/2 ounces) of dried, finely-ground rhubarb. Add 15 millilitres (one tablespoon) of olive oil and an equal amount of hot water and mix. Apply with a brush and cover hair with plastic wrap for 30 minutes. Rinse out and wash your hair.

Colouring and darkening grey hair

  • Grey hair can also be coloured, producing highlighting effects — the white hairs take on colour differently from those that are not yet grey.
  • To darken grey hair, mix 100 millilitres (3 1/2 ounces) of boiling water with 60 millilitres (four tablespoons) of dried sage and five millilitres (one teaspoon) of black tea. Let steep for 30 minutes, then strain. Moisten your hair with the lukewarm solution and rinse after 30 minutes.

Quick colour rinse

You can make a quick colour rinse by using tea, coffee or herbal mixtures before your final rinse. Add 90 millilitres (six tablespoons) of herbs to 500 millilitres (two cups) of water and steep for 30 minutes over low heat, then strain. For light hair, use chamomile or pot marigold flowers, turmeric, rhubarb root and lemon peels. For dark hair, try sage, rosemary, walnut leaves or shells, coffee and black tea. Grey hair will get good results from rinsing with cornflower or holly-hock flowers.

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