Great ideas...I have some suggestions

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Posted by Kenzi on October 12, 2002 at 15:27:35:

In reply to: Henna Testing - a proposed method of working. posted by mark foster on October 12, 2002 at 07:39:23:

Something that is done by many product testers is a blind test,
where the tester doesn't know the brand of the item s/he is
testing, to eliminate any subjective judgment. No, I am not
accusing Catherine of being less than objective (I think the fact
that she does not sell henna herself makes her more objective)
but this method would show others who read the results that
she is guaranteeing the objectivity of the results.

I suppose we would need a disinterested objective person to
receive the samples, remove all evidence of their provenance
and brand, and label them with each with a number or letter,
keeping track of the brand that corresponds to the number or
letter. That person would then send the samples to Catherine
(and/or Mark) who would test them and send the results back to
the person with the list of brands and number/letter. Once the
results were tabulated and matched up with brand names this
information could be published.

I would also suggest a numerical rating system that would
further eliminate subjective judgment. For example:

3=a lot

Sand/Grit/Stems etc.:
2=some (explanation of what is in there)
3=alot (")

Fineness of grind/sift:
1=very fine (no sifting needed to go through a .5mm jacquard tip)
2= fine (no sifting needed to go through a .7 jacquard tip)
3=medium (sifting required to go through any tip)
4=coarse (for use as hair henna only)

Those are just ideas for classifying the results...suggestions

I think what Catherine has started is VERY useful and I applaud
all her hard work. We could also use testing of stain but that is a
huge can of worms because of all the different variables. At
least with the microscope test we can be sure of the purity of our
henna; this is an issue for suppliers and resellers who want to
know what in their henna and also for the person who buys
something and wants to be sure they are getting their money's
worth. Of course the suppliers and resellers have to be
concerned about stain, but because of all the variables it is
harder to guarantee. The supplier and reseller should be sure
that what they are selling is fresh and stains well, but whether
the color comes out red or black is dependent on so many
factors, many of them out of the control of the supplier/reseller
that it would be impossible to test for everything. Perhaps a test
will present itself that meets these needs as day!


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