The original tint for hair is undoubtedly henna. It comes from a plant native to the middle east and popularised in India. The people there dried the leaves, crushed it into a powder, added a bit of water to make it into a paste and put it on skin and hair. Let the paste sit there for a while, and when you wipe it off, the skin and hair was left with a reddish-brown stain that would last on the skin and hair for several weeks. It also has a bunch of uses in medicine, and is really good for the hair and skin. These days, they take the plant, do some science on it, and remove the active chemical in the plant. Think of it like squeezing the oil from olives.
Next, a hair dye was made using a chemical called paraphenylenediamine (PPD). This works really well when used with hydrogen peroxide. It works a lot quicker than henna, and is naturally a lot darker than henna. In fact, PPD is added to some henna colours to make it darker or black. A major concern with PPD is that it can cause skin reactions in people. Nearly every country on Earth has limits on how much PPD can be added to beauty products. There are substitutes for PPD that are less likely to cause reactions in people. A common one is Diaminotoluene (DAT). PPD and DAT both require hydrogen peroxide in order for them to work.
Some clever person asked a cool question; “What would happen if we used both?” We’ve got cars that run on batteries and petrol, why not henna and regular tint? It was then invented with great results. We called it hybrid tint. A small amount of henna is combined with regular tint (DAT) and put in a gel. When this is applied, we get the best of both worlds: the staying power of henna, and the colour and speed of regular tint. This gave us a problem in the real world; the colours when applied, tended to run on the edges and give a watermark effect. Another problem is the way we humans tend to overcomplicate some things. This led manufacturers to make 20+ shades to cover every conceivable colour a client may want.
This is where Locks Lash stepped in, as usual, to make things easier and better (I know, shameless plug). We put the hybrid tint in a creme base. Doing it this way, we could get sharp lines and make cleaning up a lot easier. This also means we can put other beneficial things in it to make the skin and hair healthier. We simplified it by making 4 colours: light and dark, cool and warm. By mixing them in different ratios, we can get 16+ colours shades out of it. Add in a couple toners, and we can make 100+ different colours/shades. This limits the amount of product each provider needs to buy, and frees up her creativity. Quality control is easier too.
Lastly, there is STAIN. Some people like to be extra, and I can’t blame them. There’s something special about being dramatic and making a statement. Take the staying power of henna, the speed of regular tint, concentrate it and put it in a liquid. That’s the stain. It is more bold and darker than hybrid.