Gray Hair Dye Recipe

Gray hair is not actually white or grey but is due to a lack of pigmentation and melanin.  Cells that are located in the base of the hair's follicles slow, and eventually stop producing pigment. This causes the hair to lose color and appear gray or white because of the way light is reflected. To color your hair you don't always need to use harsh chemicals. Below are some of the tried and true natural ways to color your hair.

I make a strong 'tea' of Sage and a bit of Rosemary, strain it and refrigerate it, and before I wash my hair, I spray it on the base of the grey patches of hair, even have massaged it in. leave it for 5 - ten minutes and then wash as usual, and care for my hair as I normally do.

After a few weeks of this (I do this almost daily), the grey is disappearing.

After using the sage the normal coloring returns to the hair. It is not a 'color-change' shocker, and it softens and allows me to control the curls, and the amount of grey. I have used this through the years and it has never damaged my hair. I stop using it and the grey gradually returns and it is even prettier than the time before.

My sister was totally grey headed and after a month of daily using this solution, she had her normal light brown hair. which she had not seen for over ten years, and she dabs it on once or twice a week now to keep her normal color, and she is 40. I am 48 and do not want to be grey just yet.


Rosemary & Sage Tea Colorant

To make a strong rosemary & sage tea use equal amounts of rosemary & sage to 1 cup of water, combine ingredients and steep for 10 minutes, strain and use liquid for the colorant.

NOTE: These processes must be repeated daily for a few weeks before you notice any changes.

Purdue University

Photo  Credit: Serge Bertasius Photography

45 Responses

  1. Please, dear ladies,
    If chemicals didn’t damage your hair “to death”
    the most wonderful herbs like sage and rosemary can’t make it worse.
    Quite contrary – it will restore it naturally and very gently.
    Enjoy the wisdom of Mother Nature …

    Good Luck ?

  2. Does it actually color your hair permanently? Or does it wash out the next wash and you have to repeat in a daily basis?

  3. maria victoria roberto

    can we use hot water to steep rosemary and sage, so that result will be stronger tea?

  4. Lenore Bavota

    I’m willing to try this. I don’t want to use chemicals anymore. My hair is just about all gray, with dark underneath. I’ll let you know how it works. thanks

  5. B Taylor

    What are the amounts of sage and rosemary used?

  6. Mary B Stirrett

    My hair is all gray in the front and very fine. I make strong chamomile tea and spray it on my freshly washed hair (no conditioner) then blow dry it. Not only does it give me a very natural color, it also adds incredible volume and texture

  7. Nomad

    Will this hurt dyed hair?

  8. Samantha

    I’m African Caribbean and have naturally thick tight curly hair. Therefore washing my hairs daily is not an option. Will it still work if I don’t wash it out?
    Many thanks

  9. Maria

    Hello – I can’t find a response which confirms whether you used fresh or dried herbs? Thanks

  10. You use 1 cup. Do you pour it over your head several times?
    Thank you

  11. Carrie Burns

    I can not use rosemary because I have high blood pressure what else can I use with the sage.Thank You

  12. DebraLee

    I would not just make a tea but make an infusion. An infusion means to let the tea steep overnight or for 8 hours. I woul use fresh herbs, they are more potent and you can get them at the grocery store. Better yet go to Home Depot and get the fresh plants that way you can have as much as you want eveytime you need it. There was never an answer about the amount so I would just use one cup of water to about 1 tablespoon each of the herbs finely chopped. Strain it well and use it in a smal spray bottle. If you decide to make it stronger it would not hurt anything so play around. I am going to try this.

  13. I would like to know if i use dry or fresh herbs and how much to use
    Thank you

  14. shobha

    so u wash your hair daily for weeks? do u use shampoo?

  15. mary

    It does not make sense to use this as a pre-wash. And why strain it if it’s a pre-wash, just pour it on with all the herbs included, since it would be rinsed. Maybe it gives a poor texture to the hair so must be shampooed out. Harsh shampoos strip color though. I’m very gray. Should be an interesting experiment.

  16. sara

    Dear, I am 30 years old, half my hairs are grey I am using dye but it made my hairs very bad and very thin and alot of hair fall out. kindly guide me if you have any natural hair dye you told us that remedies plz guide me on.

  17. Nilam

    Hi. Thanks for your article. You never answered the query whether to use dried or fresh herbs?

  18. Susan Di Santo

    Are dried herbs just as good as fresh? yes?
    ive used semi perm colour for a few years… wanto try this on my next badger stripe outgrowth… dont want to wash/rinse long hair EVERY day… waht about sprayning onto roots and leaving in?
    does it discolour scalp or skin?

  19. navdeep

    will grey hair return. if i stop using this method.. please tell me?

  20. mamoni

    in what ratio should the sage tea,rosemary tea be added to water for boiling?say for example to one cup of water how many tablespoons of sage and rosemary has to be added?????Plz advise.

    • Mary Krigbaum


      Did you ever get a response to your question of how much to use of each? I’m doing this today or tomorrow and I want to know.

      • Suryaprabha

        My husband got hair gray below 30 years. He used to color like 15 years. He lost lot of hail on front and top. So if he use sage and rose ever he will hair back and get color black . Please guide us. We need fresh leaves or powder. I will get both .leaves and powder too. If leaves how much quantity we need.thank you.

  21. Deyanira

    I dont know how long it Take , im doing it for three and i dont see any change on my grey hair maybe i need moré time?

    • Deyanira

      For three weeks every day

  22. Penny

    If my hair has got colour in it will this treatment affect the colour? Will it make it go a funny colour?

  23. Veronica


    Thank you for the information. I have seen many other recipes for the sage/rosemary rinse on the internet but the other sites recommend pouring the rinse over the hair after washing the hair. You put the herbal solution on BEFORE washing your hair. What makes the difference for you to put it on before the wash?

  24. syed shakeeb Sohail

    I am living in Riyadh KSA. I reach your post and read it all. I like the people comments and found myself near to the solution for reversing grey hair. My top of the head is completely white and it is increasing in every part of my head except backside. I am male and 32 right know and working as marketeer. I have no idea how to take it from the local market. Please suggest me how much i should use to get the quick results. If you have any remedy for curing my hair permanently naturally from Grey hair to black please step forward and help me. I be waiting for your quick & positive reply

  25. Daria

    Not sure if you’re still monitoring this post. When you say you use sage and rosemary, are they fresh or dried? How much of each per cup of water?
    Thank you

  26. FRA


  27. Darla

    Will dried herbs work, or do they need to be fresh. I am eager to use this recipe on my hair! Thanks!

  28. shebahaleem

    What is sage and rosemarry where I get al dis. .

    • HELEN

      They are herbs and can be found in most markets.

  29. Maria

    Can a big batch be made and stored for daily use before showering?

    • HELEN

      Better to make in small batches. Since it has no preservatives it can go bad after awhile.

      • Coskination

        I don’t like all the work so I made a huge batch of it and froze it in my muffin tins. Then I stored the muffin shaped tea cubs in a gallon bag in the freezer. So then I thaw out one each week to use.

      • What a wonderful idea! 🙂

      • sheila

        How much sage and rosemary do you use (example 3 tablespoons of each or what to 1 cup of water, also is that 8 ounces of water ). Please tell me the exact amounts.

  30. Janet

    I have been using this method, for several years, to cover an almost full head of grey hair. My childhood hair color was very blonde and now I am a champagne blonde. My hairdresser loves the color and I get tons of comments on how nice the color is. Am now age 68.
    I used it daily for 30 days and now once a month–works great, try it.

    • Janice Smith

      Hi do you rinse it out after you apply it? How long do you leave it on for? Thanks

      • You leave it in for 5-10 minutes then wash your hair as usual. You have to use it daily for a few weeks before you will see results.

    • Janet i see in your commemt you tried the sage and rosemary hair colour. Can you please let me know if you use dried or fresh herbs and how much of each. Hope you can answer. Thank you

    • Holly

      Janet which
      do you use fresh herbs or dried and what ratio do you use?

  31. Jacquelyn

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts about grey hair. Regards

  32. Ethlyn Weekes

    I intend to use this hair dye recipe.

    • Lauren

      I love the idea of this recipe and I am going to try it out the only problem is in your recipe to do not state the amount of sage and rosemary. I see the part about 1 cups of water and equal parts sage and rosemary but how many tablespoons or what of the sage and rosemary. thanks so much 🙂

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