Can you store extra henna paste?
Freeze "terped" henna paste and it will stay fresh!

If you want to store leftover henna paste, protect it from light, heat, and air!  Freeze your henna paste in a glass jar, heavy plastic, or wrapped with aluminum foil. If you freeze your paste right after you "terp" it, it will last for months with no demise at all!  Thaw it out, and use it just as if you'd made it fresh.

You can refrigerate henna paste to slow down demise.

If you refrigerate henna paste, it will demise, but more slowly than if you left it at room temperature.  The numbers here represent the number of days since the henna paste was "terped", packaged, and saved in the refrigerator.  You can see that for 3 or 4 days the paste still stains well, and after that, the dye gradually demises.  That means you can make a batch on Thursday, terp it Friday, and use it through a 3 day weekend if you keep your paste in the refrigerator.  If you make too much, freeze the extra, and it will be good for months!

How do Henna Page Artists Store their henna paste?

Jen in Colorado: "I henna a lot of prego ladies so I only use lavender any more.  I mix up a big batch and transfer it to these very small bags from Hobby Lobby and squish them flat (they freeze and thaw faster that way).  Then I put the small bags into a quart freezer bag labeled with the powders & EOs I used.  The small bags are supposed to be for charms or small jewelry: they hold enough henna to fill 2 of my homemade cones.  I like little bags so I can defrost just a small amount if that's all I need.

Willowhawk:"I mix 200 grams of powder at a time which yields around 600 grams of paste.  When the dye has released I put the paste in a dozen cones, put those in a ziplock freezer bag,  and freeze it. I usually take 3-6 cones with me to an event.  This is a lot of paste to take, but I would rather have too much than not enough.  If I don't sell the leftover paste at the end of an event I bring it back home and freeze it to use later.  When I need to thaw a cone, I put it in a baggie, in a  cup of hot water.  It's ready in 15 minutes!"

Angela Diller: "I just put the fresh made paste into a carrot bag and use that to squeeze into a plastic squeeze bottle with a long capped tip, a "yorker bottle". The plastic bottles are more protective for freezing, watertight for quick thawing with hot water, and it's much easier to fill a j-bottle with the hard nozzle than with the wiggly end of a carrot bag. Also, the plastic bottles don't seep dye or "terp" odor, as carrot bags sometimes do."

Alissa : "In the summer, I make larger batches (about 2-4 ozs.) and freeze what goes left unused until I need it. This is handy for keeping henna around any time you need some. In the winter, I mix less, usually just enough for a half ounce Jacquard bottle, plus a little extra for keeping it filled for a while. Any extra henna that I want to get rid of, I collect in a spare plastic bottle and freeze, until I mix it into my latest batch of henna for my hair.  When keeping henna ready for use that day, I always refrigerate my paste until it's time to leave the house."

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Catherine Cartwright-Jones
The Henna Page

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