How Long Should I Wait to Dye My Hair With Henna After Using a Chemical Dye?

by Stephanie Hancock ; Updated September 28, 2017

Natural henna produces a red-orange color.

angel hair image by Randy McKown from

You Can Use Natural Henna

Natural henna, which is a reddish-orange tone, is safe for use over colored, bleached or permed hair. You must first do a strand test to ensure that your hair won't turn an awful green or black color first.

Natural henna only comes in the natural red-orange color, and any other color contains other ingredients, including possible chemicals, to get a different non-red color.

Don't Use Compound Henna

Compound henna is henna that has chemicals or metallic salts added to it to give it a different color. Compound henna should not be used over recently chemically dyed hair for at least 12 months, and then only with a strand test to ensure proper coloring and that your hair won't "fry."

Compound henna put over chemical hair coloring can completely ruin your hair.

Most "black" henna products contain PPD (Para-Phenylenediamine), which can cause skin irritation and allergic reactions.

Bottom Line

Only use natural henna and do a strand test. Clip strands of hair from your head and apply the henna to the strand, leave it for two hours and wash it off. Dry it to see the coloring.

Ensure you've read the ingredients on the box. Purchase your henna from a reputable dealer.

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About the Author

Stephanie Hancock is a seasoned freelance writer who began her career in 2003. She has been a weekly newspaper reporter at the "Vulcan Advocate" and a freelance writer on the Web. Freelancing became her full-time career after leaving the newspaper in 2006. Hancock has her hospital unit clerk certificate from Bow Valley College.