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How to Remove Henna from Hair: 5 Ways That Work

How to Remove Henna from Hair: 5 Ways That Work

If you want to take henna of your hair, you might need to learn some useful tips and tricks that will ease your job. Henna is not easy to remove but it is not impossible either, as long as you know ways to do it.

First of all, it is important to know that henna is the best alternative when it comes to coloring your hair.

This hair die is a Lawsonia inermis shrub extract and it is the most natural hair dye you will find on the market. It is very famous and commonly used in Asian countries as it can add interesting tones to the hair color without damaging it with chemicals.

There are also different types of henna on the market, based on different recipes.

Some are made of Indigofera tinctoria extract with an additional vegetal pigment added to it. All of them are natural and healthy to use on your hair. However, not all types of henna will be as easy to strip out.

Some might need more effort than others so this is something you need to be prepared for. Here is a complete guide to help you get henna off your hair with no chemicals!

Efficient Ways to Remove Henna from Your Hair

If you want to take henna off your hair, the good news is that you don’t need to go to the salon.

You don’t need to use unhealthy chemicals either. You can do that at home with your own ingredients. Here are the best ways that will help you remove henna from your hair with no hassle!

Use different types of oil

You might be amazed to discover how efficient oil can be when you want to remove henna from your hair.

It might take several attempts until you completely get rid of the layers of henna but you should see results from the first time you try this method. The more henna you used on your hair, the harder it will be to take it off.

To do this by using oil you will need to follow the next steps!

  • Gather the ingredients that you need. These are Argan oil, olive oil, and coconut oil but also a clarifying or micellar shampoo and a conditioner that works for your type of hair. You will also need a shower cap handy.
  • Wash your hair like you would normally do in order to take any hair product layers of it. You should do that to make sure that the oil has direct access to the layers of henna that are covering your hair and can remove them easier.
  • Mix the three different oils in a bowl in equal parts. No oil should be in a bigger quantity than another oil.
  • Apply the oil mix on your wet hair and soak it well. Your hair should be entirely covered by this oil treatment. Make sure no part of your hair is left uncovered and the oil is in abundance.
  • Use the shower cap to cover your hair once you soaked it in the oil treatment. You should wear the cap for several hours and if you want the best results, use it overnight. In order to accelerate the effect of this treatment, you can use your hairdryer to apply heat on your hair. This trick helps the oil take action faster and remove your henna layers more efficiently.
  • Once the time passed, removed the shower cap and wash your hair again. Make sure you wash it until there is no oil residue on it. Use your conditioner and let it dry or dry it with your hairdryer. If you applied henna for a long time, you might need to do this again until your hair is completely clean of it.

Try alcohol

You might be surprised but alcohol can actually have the benefit of removing henna off your hair successfully.

This is because alcohol can neutralize different metal salts that might be present in some henna hair dyes. Here is how you can do that!

  • The ingredients you need are clarifying shampoo and a hard water shampoo as well as vodka. Or any other type of alcohol and a strong conditioner. Make sure you have all these ingredients before you start this process.
  • Wash your hair diligently before using the alcohol. This step is important in order to clear your hair off any residue or hair products that you might have on it. You might need to wash your hair more than once in a row in order to get it clean enough.
  • Apply the alcohol on your hair plain, by using a sponge. Make sure that your hair is entirely covered and soaked in alcohol. Be prepared for the strong alcohol smell that you will have to deal with during this process. Let the alcohol sit on your hair for 15 minutes so it has time to neutralize the metallic salts in the henna.
  • Once the time passed, use the hard water shampoo to clean your hair again. Remove all the alcohol during the first wash and wash your hair a second time to make sure it is well cleaned.
  • Use the conditioner to add the nutrition your hair needs. You might need to leave your conditioner in your hair more so that it gets moisturized well. Alcohol has the tendency to dry out your hair so this step is crucial.

If you want to try out henna, this is how to do it properly!

Lemon juice could really help

Using lemon juice to remove henna off your hair might be a surprise for you but it definitely works. This method is quite simple.

  • You need pure lemon juice, that is not altered with any other ingredients. You will also need shampoo and a hair mask to seal the process.
  • Wash your hair like you normally would. Apply the lemon juice all over it. You should apply enough lemon juice to cover your entire hair.
  • You can leave the lemon juice on for up to 3 hours. But don’t let it overnight. Because lemon juice can dry your hair quite drastically, you should make sure to respect the time frame and not overdo it.
  • Rinse your hair and wash it with your shampoo again when you are done with the lemon juice. You might need to wash it more than once to get it to be clean enough.
  • Apply a thick layer of hair mask to make sure that your hair gets the moisture it needs. You need to add the right nutrients to your hair after such a drying process.

Use baking soda a couple of times

Baking soda is very useful when it comes to different situations. You can try it to get rid of some layers of henna off your beautiful hair as well. But be patient because this method will not give you fast results.

  • First of all, get enough baking soda to cover your entire hair. Get ready to have your regular shampoo and conditioner too.
  • Get your hair humid by using plain water. You don’t need to wash it with shampoo when you first start this process. Baking soda will dry your hair and the little oils it might have naturally on top of it might protect this dryness from being extreme.
  • Apply the baking soda powder all over your hair from the roots to the edges. Pay attention to dot get it in your eye. If such an accident happens, rinse with water until it is all cleared off.
  • Give the baking soda between 30 minutes and one hour to settle into your hair. Once this time passed you can wash your hair with your regular shampoo.
  • Don’t forget to use a strong and nourishing conditioner to help your hair get smooth and full of life again. You can invest in a product intended for damaged and dry hair for best results.

Vinegar could be another option to remove henna off your hair

The last but not the least method to remove henna off your hair is the vinegar method.

This will not be different than the previous ones in terms of steps. But you will replace the active ingredients with vinegar rather than oil, lemon juice, baking soda or alcohol.

  • You will need a significant amount of vinegar according to the length of your hair, shampoo and conditioner or hair mask. Use a type of vinegar that has a high level of acidity in order to be more efficient.
  • Wash your hair with your regular shampoo. Skip the conditioner or hair mask for now. use the shampoo only once because you don’t want your hair to be completely clear of the natural oils it produces.
  • After you rinse your hair, use the vinegar to soak it entirely in it. To do that you can simply fill a bowl with vinegar and dip your hair in it until the vinegar reaches all its layers.
  • Let the vinegar between 15 and 30 minutes to settle into your hair. You don’t need to cover your hair during this time but you can use the hair drier to add some heat to it and speed up the effects.
  • Wash your hair again using both your shampoo and conditioner this time. You can use a hair mask if you feel that your hair needs more nutrients after this process.
  • You should consider doing this process several times until you see significant results. However, your hair will definitely get lighter from the first time you do it. It is also important to consider how many times you used henna on your hair because this will determine how many times you need to do this method.

How Long Does it Take for Henna to Fade from Hair?

The main thing you need to keep in mind when you are planning to use henna on your hair is the power that this dye can actually have.

Henna is a less harmful and even healthy way to color your hair but it can take a long time to fade out.

It is a hair dye with permanent qualities and it can take up to six weeks to fade out from your hair. However, even if the color loses its shine and intensity after six weeks, it might not go away completely.

If you want it out you can bleach your hair or use one of the methods presented in this guide.

Can You Strip Henna Out of Your Hair?

It is a difficult process to strip henna out of your hair. This becomes even more difficult if you used it for some months or longer because there will be more layers of henna to remove.

However, by using the five methods presented in this guide, you will definitely help your henna color fade out a lot faster.

If you want to take it all out you can also combine the previous methods. For instance, you can use the alcohol method and use the oil mix method right after that.

So, you can definitely strip henna off your hair if you know what to do and ultimately, you can bleach it out.

But keep in mind that bleaching your hair should be your last resort. This can damage your hair profoundly and you might waste a lot of time and money to regain the beauty and smooth texture of it.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, even if henna is a permanent hair dye, there are ways to remove it or at least fade it out.

You need to pay attention to the needs of your hair during such a process as well. Stick with natural methods like the ones above and don’t overdo it with chemicals just to change the color of your hair.

Sometimes, the best way to consider so you don’t damage your hair at all is by being patient and cutting the dyed hair as it grows.

But if you don’t want to do that, you can definitely rely on the methods in this guide and get the hair color that you want without harming it!


Friday 1st of January 2021

Amazing tips. I tried alcohol method and oil method. There is also a a vit C method combined with a stripping shampoo. I tried firstly an alcohol method which removed lots of sodium picramate from my auburn henna, "bleeding" dark red tones out. Then I tried oil pulling a few times. Then alcohol method again and a few oil pulling sessions. Then I applied vit C to my hair and used head&shoulder shampoo. The hair got significantly lighter from Auburn / burgundy to light copper with blonde highlights. My hair under several layers of henna was blonde initially. I am planning to continue with these methods until my hair is golden blonde again and I consider a bleach bath in the end - after I see no more progress with the other methods. Thank you for a helpful article.

OJ Roskruge

Sunday 9th of October 2022

@Ludwina, Thanks so much for the feedback.