Ancient Sunrise® Fruit Acid Powder Facial

Fruit acid powder facial for skin brightening, tightening, and fewer blackheads.

Do you have leftover fruit acid that you’re not planning on using in future henna or cassia mixes? You may want to try a homemade fruit acid powder facial!  Here is a simple recipe that was made from Ancient Sunrise® citric acid, Ancient Sunrise® amla, and Ancient Sunrise® Nightfall Rose.  If you have sensitive skin, this mask may not be for you.

Facial Mix

1/8 teaspoon Citric Acid
1/4  teaspoon Amla
1/4 teaspoon Nightfall rose
1/2 teaspoon of warm distilled water




Facial Paste

First, mix up all three powders with warm distilled water and let it sit for a few minutes.
Secondly, apply the paste to freshly cleaned skin with a brush on the face, avoiding the eyes, nostrils, mouth, and any open wounds.
Then leave the mix on for 15 minutes (or until firm).
Finally, use a washcloth and warm water while gently massage the paste off of the skin.

Immediately after rinsing the paste off, my face was RED.  Part of this can be attributed to the anthocyanins of Nightfall Rose, the other part is due to my sensitive skin.  The redness went away within a few hours.  Though subtle, my skin was tighter, brighter, softer, and I had fewer blackheads.  Within 24 hours, I noticed my rosacea was less red than before the mask. To see more drastic results, I would need to do this weekly.

Before and After

I would do this mask again, as well as recommend it to my friends and family, because I liked that my skin felt tighter and that my cheeks were less red after 24 hours.  Expect a little tingling and tightening sensation while it’s on the skin.  It was simple to mix, apply, and rinse off.  Like most facials, avoid doing this on a day of an important event, as it does cause temporary redness.  If you’re unsure of how your skin will react, mix up a small amount and test first!


Left: Before; Right: After

*Note* It is not advisable to throw random ingredients together without thoroughly researching the pros and cons specific products may have on human skin and consulting an esthetician or dermatologist.

Citric Acid Powder

Benefits of Citric Acid on the Skin:

  • Brightens skin1
  • Minimizes fine lines1
  • Anti-bacterial1

Citric acid is used in countless beauty products and food products. It’s a great preservative, but there are more benefits that you may not have known, such as its positive effect on acne and wrinkly skin. Citric acid is an alpha hydroxyl acid which results in helping to increase the rate at which skin renews as well as help skin that has sun damage.2

Amla Powder

Benefits of Amla (Emblica Officionalis) on the skin:

  • Anti-bacterial3
  • High in polyphenols4
  • Anti-aging5

Like citric acid, amla has multiple purposes.  Ancient Sunrise® Amla powder is used for henna mixes and can be used on the skin by itself.3  High levels of antioxidants in amla mean it’s procollagen. Procollagen is what can help the skin look youthful.

Nightfall Rose

Benefits of Nightfall Rose (Aronia Prunifolia) on the skin:

  • Anti-microbial6
  • Anti-inflammatory6
  • High in polyphenols such as Hydroxycinnamic acid7

Aronia prunifolia seems to be a beauty secret the world should know about.  The purple chokeberry has high levels of anthocyanins consequently helping with UV protection8.  The hydroxycinnamic acid present in this powder can help with anti-aging.  Hydroxycinnamic has anti collagenase properties which prevent enzymes from breaking down the collagen in our skin6.

To learn more about Amla as a mask, read here: Ancient Sunrise® Amla Powder and Its Many Uses


  1. “Citric Acid.” org, American Chemistry Council, 27 Aug. 2019,
  2. Tang, Sheau-Chung, and Jen-Hung Yang. “Dual Effects of Alpha-Hydroxy Acids on the Skin.” Molecules (Basel, Switzerland), MDPI, 10 Apr. 2018,
  3. Cartwright-Jones, Catherine. “Chapter 6: Henna and Acidic Mixes.” Ancient Sunrise Henna for Hair, TapDancing LizardÒ, Copyright © 2015, pp. 7-8.
  4. Variya, Bhavesh C, et al. “Emblica Officinalis (Amla): A Review for Its Phytochemistry, Ethnomedicinal Uses and Medicinal Potentials with Respect to Molecular Mechanisms.” Pharmacological Research, U.S. National Library of Medicine, Sept. 2016,
  5. Binic, Ivana, et al. “Skin Ageing: Natural Weapons and Strategies.” Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine : ECAM, Hindawi Publishing Corporation, 2013,
  6. Taofiq, Oludemi, et al. “Hydroxycinnamic Acids and Their Derivatives: Cosmeceutical Significance, Challenges and Future Perspectives, a Review.” Molecules (Basel, Switzerland), MDPI, 13 Feb. 2017,
  7. Taheri, Rod, et al. “Underutilized Chokeberry (Aronia Melanocarpa, Aronia Arbutifolia, Aronia Prunifolia) Accessions Are Rich Sources of Anthocyanins, Flavonoids, Hydroxycinnamic Acids, and Proanthocyanidins.” ACS Publications, Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, 13 Aug. 2013,
  8. Morse, Nancy L. “Anthocyanins and Skin Protection.” Bend Beauty, 17 Jan. 2019,


MariaAncient Sunrise® Specialist• LPC

Methods for Touching Up Roots: Part 1 – Color Brush and Hands

Henna Paste and Color Brush

When it comes to methods for touching up roots, it can be tough to know where to start. It’s a struggle to make sure to cover only the regrowth and definitely harder to get it perfect in the back. Even when you’re a licensed stylist, touch-ups on yourself don’t come easy.

In this article, I’m going to go over a couple of methods for touching up roots using your hands and a color brush. For my demonstration, I’m using Ancient Sunrise® cassia mixed with water and applied immediately. I did my application on a mannequin head to show a better view of how you can part your hair and apply the paste on the back section of your head since that is where people have the most trouble.

Utensils used:

  • gloves
  • comb
  • clips (2 different kinds)
  • color brush

You want to make ¼ inch sections when applying your paste. I’m using bigger sections for demonstration purposes.  I start by parting the hair into 4 sections and clipping the hair.

[table id=3 /]

Method: color brush

With a brush, you can be a little bit more precise on placement than applying the paste with your hands. If you use 2 mirrors, one in front and one behind you, it’s easier to see your sections in the back of the head.  It’s no harm if you apply freely and go by feel since the roots on the back of the head aren’t as visible. Usually, bristles on a color brush are about an inch or 2 in length, the same length as the average regrowth, so that can be your guide.

[table id=2 /]

Method: Hands

Using your hand(s) to apply paste can be a bit messy, so if you’re okay with that, this method may be for you. For this demonstration, I’m not using a comb as it’s not needed.  For some people starting at the top may be a better choice, which is where I’m starting for this method.

[table id=4 /]

Hopefully, my methods of touching up roots can help you when you’re ready to do your next root touch up. Everyone will find a way that can work best for them. Don’t worry if it will take some time for you to find your way. You got this!  If all else fails, friends and family can always come in handy, if they don’t mind a little chatting and playing in some paste.

If you’re looking for assistance with applying Ancient Sunrise® henna to your whole head, check out this article:

I look forward to seeing another article in the future on more techniques to use for root touch-ups. Happy Hennaing!

  Damaris • Ancient Surnise® Specialist • LPC

Looking Back and Looking Forward

In the summer of 2017, we began The Ancient Sunrise® Blog and The Becoming Moonlight® Blog. The idea started out with a simple question: How could we educate more people about the science and art of henna? Catherine Cartwright Jones’ work was freely available online, we had active Facebook groups and pages, and Mehandi customer service could be reached via phone, email, chat, and social media platforms. Yet there was still more we could do to provide clear, accurate information to more people across the world.

The internet was already flooded with various videos, articles, and “recipes” for henna. Most of them provided inaccurate, strange, or downright bad information. Myths about henna were also perpetuated through word of mouth via salon stylists and cosmetology schools whose texts had outdated information about (compound) henna. Every day, customer service answered the same questions, dispelled the same myths, and reassured customers over and over that henna was a safe and easy process. People believed that henna made one’s hair fall out. Many were told that once they use henna, they can never dye or perm their hair again.

Others were ready to jump into using henna, but have been given incorrect information about how to mix and apply the paste. What should they add to the henna? Boiling water? Coffee? Yogurt? How do they get brunette results instead of red? What is indigo? How do you use it?

At the time, I had been working for Mehandi as a customer service representative and at the brick and mortar store, Empire, in downtown Kent. I was preparing to leave Kent, Ohio for Montreal, Quebec where my partner was pursuing his doctorate degree. I realized that one thing Mehandi did not yet have was a blog presence. Blogs and vlogs were growing again in popularity, especially for niche interests such as hair care and natural beauty. I mentioned the idea of trying to connect with bloggers.

Catherine thought about it and then one day asked me, “Why don’t you write a blog?” It made sense; I loved working for the company and my background was in writing and in academic research. This way, I could continue doing what I loved even while living abroad. Although blogging was something I had never done before, I was excited to try it. We decided to create one site for each brand: The Ancient Sunrise® Blog for all things related to henna for hair, and The Becoming Moonlight® Blog for body art.

That summer, we brainstormed topics and collected materials. We discussed our vision for the blogs. We agreed that we wanted the writing to be thorough and well-researched, yet accessible to the everyday reader. With so much misinformation surrounding henna, a crucial goal for the blogs was to provide the truth and dispel myths. Many blogs on henna for hair already existed but spouted inaccurate claims and bad mixing/application processes. We wanted this to be different. We wanted to set it straight. The articles would be based on research and science. They would be easy to read, but not “fluff.” There was already too much fluff.

Catherine and I joked about “fixing the internet.” With the thousands of articles and videos about henna already in existence, how could we make a difference and set the truth straight? I felt like an ant faced with the task of dismantling a sandcastle one grain at a time. Catherine took a couple of thumb drives and filled them with the hundreds of academic articles she had collected during her time in graduate school. It was a virtual library. Armed with the thumb drives and Google Scholar, I was ready.

Funny how the internet works. Search engines have complex algorithms that decide which pages are listed first. In a snowball effect, sites with more readership gain more readership. Good articles are shared across platforms like Facebook, and this gains the article more readership, which bumps the site up in searches. Someone better-versed in technology could explain it better than I. All I know is what began as a slow trickle of page views grew over the months and years, then rapidly spiked to an average of 750 page views per day. Oftentimes as I researched and wrote new articles, I’d run a quick search on Google to find a piece of information I needed and I’d be stunned to find links to my own articles in the search results.

I wanted to be a writer from the time I could read. I couldn’t believe that, through such an unexpected turn of events, I wound up writing about henna with readers across the world. I had people in Finland and Egypt and Japan reading my words! Things that I wrote! It was both thrilling and rather terrifying. I once posted on my own social media that the Ancient Sunrise® blog was now read on every continent except Antarctica. A friend who saw my post just happened to know someone working on research in Antarctica at the time. He sent that friend a link, that friend opened it, and it became official: The blog had been accessed on every continent.

Since the launch in August 2017, there are now nearly sixty articles and/or videos in the two blogs combined. Out of the two, the Ancient Sunrise Blog contains the larger body of work and has the higher readership. The Becoming Moonlight® Blog was always more creative and experimental in nature, but still had a very special place in my heart.

In the Ancient Sunrise® Blog, the Henna for Hair 101 series helps those who are new to the process of coloring their hair with henna and other plant dye powders. This series contains some of the most frequently-read articles such as “How to Dye-Release Henna” and “Don’t Put Food On Your Head.”

Other articles were written with the more experienced “henna-head” in mind. Full-Coverage articles are focused on troubleshooting specific issues such as resistant gray roots and discusses advanced techniques to ensure the best results. Highlights articles feature specific products and discuss topics related to henna for hair. One of the most popular Highlights articles is “Should You Be Using Lemon Juice In Your Henna Mix?” It clarifies many misconceptions about whether or not lemon juice is the “best” acidic liquid for mixing henna.

Some of my favorite articles to write were those which explored henna, body art, and hair in historical and cultural contexts. In “Oscar Wilde’s Hair and Skin: Investigations into His PPD Sensitization and Use of Henna,” I speculated on the famous writer’s use of PPD hair dye and henna hair dye based on portraits of Wilde and historical references. In “Gender, Race, and Class in Hair Styling Spaces: Constructing Individual and Group Identities,” I summarized many researchers’ sociological studies of interactions between clients and stylists in hair salons and barber shops in a variety of socioeconomic settings. The research showed how the hair styling spaces served a purpose in forming and performing one’s identity.

Some very important work was done in educating readers about PPD in articles such as “What You Need to Know about Para-Phenylenediamine (PPD)”. The article remains one of the most read articles of the Ancient Sunrise® Blog. One important goal of Mehandi has always been to help in the fight against the PPD sensitization epidemic in our own small way by offering safer alternatives to conventional hair dyes. I am so glad that this article and others in the PPD series has reached so many.

The Becoming Moonlight® Blog was home to body art, poetry, videos, and explorations into the traditions of natural cosmetics across time and cultures. It offered tutorials on Becoming Moonlight® Gilding Paste for “white henna” designs, as well as advice for body artists who wanted to incorporate gilding paste into their businesses. It also discussed the uses of henna on skin. One of my favorite articles to write and research was “Playing Exotic: Interactions Between Omo Valley People and Western Tourists” which investigated the ways in which the people of the Omo Valley in Ethiopia used body paint, piercings, and costuming to negotiate their identities under the gaze of outsiders.

It has been an honor to create content that educates and entertains those who love henna and body art and who want to learn more. My hope is that slowly but surely, the strength of these blogs will overcome the mountain of misinformation so that one day accurate knowledge about henna will be as commonplace as how to fry an egg (it’s only complicated at first).

Beginning January 2019, I will be handing the blogs over to the Mehandi customer service staff so I can become a different kind of educator. Whether it be writing about henna or teaching English, I have always been drawn to opportunities to connect with others and to expand their knowledge.

I want to thank all those who have read and shared my articles. It is your enthusiasm for henna and science that led the blogs’ success. Thank you also to the Mehandi family for your support, suggestions, and edits. Thank you to Catherine Cartwright-Jones and Roy Jones for your belief in me, for your wisdom, and for your encouragement. This has been an incredible opportunity. Looking back, I am always blown away by how much has happened in two years’ time. I am excited to see how the blogs continue to grow under the care of the brilliant and creative customer service staff. I know that things can only get bigger and better.

With all of my heart: Thank you, I love you, and I wish you all the best.