Plenty of chemical treatments, highlighter kits and professional tints to change the color of your hair are available. However, if you want a natural, gentle lightening agent, look no further than your tea cabinet. The golden color of chamomile, a medicinal plant used for centuries for stomach ailments and salves, along with the flavonoids present in the compound, may brighten and lighten hair shafts gently and slowly over time.

A basic chamomile tea rinse makes it easy to incorporate this plant into your beauty routine. Steep five tea bags in a couple cups of hot water and allow the mixture to steep until cool. Remove the tea bags and rinse your damp, shampooed and conditioned strands with the mixture. Do not rinse the tea out. Let your hair air dry. The chamomile will keep working as it dries.

This process has a brightening effect, especially if you have light tresses. Brunettes benefit as well with a subtle brightening, rather than a total change of color. It also works to gently lighten salon highlights without damaging professional jobs. Continue to rinse with this mixture every couple of days to slowly change your hair and keep the golden highlights coming.

Steep four or five chamomile tea bags in a cup of hot water and let it brew for 20 minutes, then cool. Mix the strong brewed tea with a cup of natural, plain yogurt and apply to your clean, damp strands. Pin your hair up on your head and allow the hair mask to sit in place for 30 to 60 minutes.

Blondes may see hair lighten about half a shade, while brunettes might see a subtle brightening of their natural highlights. The yogurt works to give your strands a deep moisturizing treatment that leaves tresses soft.

Tips

Try the hair mask on a small section of hair before applying all over to ensure you like the final result.

Chamomile works well with a number of other natural hair lightening ingredients. Mix together a cup of strong chamomile tea with the juice of a couple lemons and a teaspoon of almond or coconut oil. Pour the mixture into a clean spray bottle.

Spritz this mixture onto your strands before you head out into the sun. Focus this particular mixture on areas you want to lighten much more substantially. Unlike the gentle rinse, the combo of lemon and chamomile may produce very noticeable results, even on brunettes, in a single day.