Are herbal hair dyes the cheaper, safer alternative to salons that our hair (and our wallets!) need?

Lush launches new and improved fan favourite henna formula

Left: Jelena in shade Brun, Right: Amelia in shade Vénitien

Is it time we started treating our hair like we do our skin? New report reveals over half of respondents think at-home hair colourants are too harsh.

Mintel’s 2023 UK hair colourants report asked consumers their feelings about at-home hair colourants – and they aren’t happy. The report found 58% of respondents think that hair colourants can be harsh on the skin and scalp, 46% want something which improves hair health at the same time as colouring it, and 31% fancy eco-friendly formulas. Could herbal hair colour be the solution?

Harvested from plants, henna is a completely natural, vegan herbal hair colourant which has been used by humans for thousands of years. 

Rather than breaking the cuticle like ammonia, or stripping away the hair’s natural colour like peroxide, henna coats the hair in a protective, translucent layer that boosts body and shine – so much so that some people use henna primarily as a treatment for hair health, with the sheer glossy colour being the bonus. Lush’s unique cocoa butter henna brick enables the product to slide through strands with ease, adding extra conditioning and softness. 

Wrapped in recycled paper packaging, Lush’s henna is vegan, self-preserving and 100% natural. By sourcing the best Iranian henna and fair trade, organic cocoa butter from Sierra Leone where farmers are helping to restore the Gola rainforest, our henna brick is not only good for hair, but also for the planet. 

Image above: (Left to right: Before and after using Lush Henna in Vénitien, Rouge and Brun shades)

Daisy Evans, Lush Hair Lead with a decade of hair colourist experience, explains: “I believe customers deserve more from their cosmetics – they are more aware than ever before of the negative effects of using instantly gratifying, appearance-changing products in the skincare world, and the same is true of synthetic hair dyes.

“We know from Mintel’s 2023 hair colourants report that customers are looking for dyes that double up as haircare, and herbal hair dyes offer exactly that. A beautiful blend of herbs, flora and masses of cocoa butter give both your scalp and hair a dose of real thirst-quenching moisture. It’s a wonderful product that I’d recommend as a colourist if you are looking to gently treat your hair and scalp whilst achieving a natural looking hair colour.”

Lush’s new and improved henna formula contains more cocoa butter than its predecessor for smooth application and soft hair, and is available in 5 shades:

  • Vénitien (strawberry blonde) – £17
  • Brun (cool brown) – £14
  • Rouge (copper red) – £14
  • Marron (warm chestnut brown) – £15
  • Noir (deep, coffee brown) – £15

Lush is also launching the second edition of its ‘hair dye bible’ – True Colours: Hair Colouring for the Curious and the Cautious (£27) by haircare expert Milly Ahlquist and Lush co-founder and trichologist Mark Constantine.

This next edition delves deeper into the often shady world of synthetic hair dyes, asking the questions every salon goer wants to know – Does hair dye have associated health risks? Can I dye my kids’ hair? Is it safe to dye your hair while pregnant? What does ‘safe’ even mean?

Milly Ahlquist, hair care expert and co-author of True Colours, said: “Dyes might target the hair, but they have extended contact with our scalp too which can lead to irritation and more serious health concerns – especially when we are applying ourselves without the help of a professional. 

“The aim of True Colours is to give people the information to make informed decisions about their hair care, tackle some of the health concerns the hair dye industry has been keeping under wraps, and help people use synthetic dyes more safely if they wish to do so. We also deep dive into henna as an alternative, a natural product that has been used to care for the scalp and hair for thousands of years.

“Alongside the serious stuff, there are plenty of juicy facts about the terrible things our ancestors have slathered their heads with over the centuries in the pursuit of perfect hair, the fascinating evolution of human hair and insider anecdotes from Lush co-founder Mark Constantine as he’s been navigating the colourful world of hairdressing and trichology for the last 50 years.”

Lush’s henna bricks and the second edition of True Colours: Hair Colouring for the Curious and the Cautious are both available in Lush stores and online at now.

Notes to editors

About Lush

Since establishing over 27 years ago, Lush has been driven by innovation and its ethics. Creators of pioneering beauty products, one of Lush’s most well known creations is the bath bomb. Invented in 1989 by Lush Co-Founder Mo Constantine in her garden shed, bath bombs have become a global sensation – all hand pressed in Lush’s own manufacturing sites across the world, Lush sold over 40.5 million last year.

A beauty company with a campaigning heart, Lush is on a mission to create a product for every need and a cosmetic revolution to save the planet. The ultimate goal is to leave the world Lusher than we found it. Lush operates a strict policy against animal testing and leads the cosmetics industry in combating over-packaging by developing products that can be sold ‘naked’ to the consumer. Lush Digital champions ethical hardware, ethical data, ethical design and open source technologies and we support and elevate communities who feel the same.

Today, Lush operates in 49 countries with over 900 shops, 38 websites shipping worldwide and a global network of native apps, broadcasting channels and digital communities in over 30 languages. 

For further information or interview requests please email [email protected] or call 0207 434 3948

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